Of course steak costs more than pasta, but you don’t have to spend a fortune while on The New Atkins Made Easy. The first step is to plan your meals and recipes for the week.
Having meal makings at hand prevents you from having to make last-minute runs to the supermarket, hitting the drive-through, or ordering takeout for dinner. Here are more ways to start saving:
• Choose cheaper cuts. There’s no need to eat pricey beef tenderloin. Sirloin and chuck contain more fat, making them flavorful, tender, juicy, and well suited to slow-cooking dishes such as stews, soups, and roasts. Lamb shanks, ham steaks, rib and shoulder pork chops, and pork, chicken, or turkey sausages are other budget-friendly choices. Buy meat in bulk when certain cuts are on sale and freeze in single or family-size portions.
• Pass on chicken parts. Whole chickens are almost always less expensive per pound than packaged parts. Cut them up or roast a whole bird for several meals over the course of a week.
• Go fish. Don’t assume that salmon, flounder, shrimp, and scallops are the only way to go. Bluefish, catfish, tilapia, sardines, mackerel, and mussels are less pricey options.
• Think beyond fish, poultry, and meat. Eggs, legumes, and tofu and other soy foods can stand in for the usual protein sources. Ground turkey is another economical choice. Vegetarian protein crumbles or sausage can substitute for ground beef in chili and other recipes.
• Bag the bag. Washed, chopped, and bagged salad greens are a time saver but are always more expensive than head lettuce or other greens.
• Shop in bulk. If you don’t already belong to a warehouse club, consider joining. Some supermarkets also now have bulk food sections where you can save on nuts, seeds, legumes, and whole grains.
• Cheaper by the gallon. Instead of purchasing bottled or canned soft drinks, make big batches of low-carb lemonade, iced tea, and coffee drinks, using an acceptable sweetener. Or flavor water with a squeeze of lemon or lime or a few springs of mint. You’ll be helping the planet while pinching pennies.