As a student, you spend the majority of your time studying, doing part-time work, and getting through your classes without going crazy!
In the midst of all this chaos, it can be difficult to make meals at home, and before you know it, you’re having another take-out from your already-scanty student budget.
In order to have better finances and save your student budget for more useful instances, here’s a guide to eating healthy with tight finances.
Plan Your Meals Ahead
Planning is critical if you want to save money on grocery trips.
Choose a day every week to plan your meals for the following week. Then write a shopping list for everything you’ll need to create those meals.
It is also necessary to check your refrigerator and cabinets to take inventory of what you have. For example, you might have goods hiding in the back that you can utilize, or you might want to schedule your meals around foods that are about to expire.
Only buy what you’re certain you’ll use. If you do it this way, you won’t wind up tossing away a lot of what you buy.
Tips For Grocery Shopping
Once you write that grocery list, stick to it when you go grocery shopping.
At the grocery shop, it’s all too easy to become sidetracked and buy things you don’t really need. After all, a jar of chocolate spread looks too tempting not to add to the cart!
As a general guideline, shop the outer edge of the store first. This is where all the whole foods are and have greater chances that you put them in your cart first.
The most processed items are frequently found in the middle of the supermarket. If you roam into one of these aisles, instead of looking straight ahead, look to the top or bottom of the shelves. The most valuable and expensive goods are frequently displayed at eye level.
Furthermore, you can also use a grocery shopping application that allows you to plan your budget and stick to it.
Cook Your Meals At Home
When you cook at home, it can be less expensive than going out to eat. In most cases, feeding four people costs the same as feeding one or two individuals at a restaurant.
Therefore, instead of deciding to go out at the last minute, make it a practice to cook at home.
As per your time and energy, you can plan to cook for the entire week on the weekends or cook each day.
When you prepare meals at home, you know what ingredients go into your meals and have better command over what you consume.
Speaking of which…
Cook More, Eat Later
As a student, you have to manage your time well. To save time in cooking, cook huge meals and eat later.
Lunches or other foods can be made with leftovers. Salads, burritos, stir-fries can all benefit from them.
When you’re on a budget, having leftovers can save you money by preventing you from eating out on the days when you don’t have time to prepare a meal from scratch.
You can also freeze leftovers in single portions for later use.
Shop During Sales
Another way to save on money as a student—shop during sales. Stock up on your favorite products when they’re on sale; this is especially great if you use them frequently.
If you’re sure that you will use the item, you might as well get it now and save some money later.
Simply ensure that it will survive a long period and will not expire in the interim. If you get something that you’ll likely throw away, you won’t save any money.
Buy Produce That’s In Season
In-season produce is far less expensive than out-of-season variations. It also has more flavors and nutrients.
Produce that is out of season is frequently carried from far away places to reach the store, which results in being bad for the environment as well as your wallet.
If possible, consider buying the bag. This is usually far less expensive than buying by the piece.
In case you’ve followed the previous tip and bought it in bulk from a sale, you can always freeze and store it for later use or incorporate it into your meal plans.
Purchase In Bulk
Purchasing certain foods in bulk can help you save on funds.
Rice, oats, barley, for example, are all available in bulk quantities.
If you store them in sealed containers, they will last a long time. Similarly, dried fruits, nuts, lentils, etc., can also be stored like this.
These are all inexpensive staple ingredients that may be utilized to make a variety of healthy meals.
Try Growing Your Own Vegetables & Fruits
Growing your own food or joining a communal garden is a terrific idea if you have the opportunity.
Seeds are inexpensive to purchase. You might be capable of growing your own herbs, seedlings, peppers, onion, and a variety of other wonderful crops with a little time and work.
Having a steady supply at home helps in saving money at the grocery.
Homegrown food may also taste superior to store-bought alternatives. You can also rest assured that it was gathered at its ripest.
Pack Your Lunch Or Snacks
Eating out is quite costly, especially when done on a regular basis. It is less expensive to bring your lunch, refreshments, beverages, and other meals than to eat out.
Furthermore, you can have full control over the items you consume and will be able to select selections that are high in helpful nutrients.
If you’ve gotten into the habit of making substantial food at home, you’ll always have a reliable lunch to take with you, with no extra effort or expense.
This will take some forethought, but it will save you a lot of money in the process.
A Final Word
Students have a limited budget in which they have to manage their studies, living, and other expenses. In this guide, we gave tips to eat healthy while being on a limited student budget.