Stop buying into the myth that eating healthily is expensive - case in point...
A FAST FOOD CHICKEN SANDWICH COSTS $4.49
That's just for the sandwich. No fries or a drink - the meal would cost $6.59. Almost 7 dollars for very little nutrition that is full of sugar and other questionable ingredients.
OR, you could make a delicious, healthy Shepard's pie with ingredients from our local Hannaford right here in Sanford:
2 lb organic carrots is $2.99 (roughly 1/8 of this would be used, so $0.37)
1 lb ground buffalo $8.99 (I stocked up on these a couple months ago for $6.99!)
1 sweet onion at $0.99/lb (1 lb of onions is about 2-3 onions, so let's say $0.45)
5 lb bag of organic potatoes at $4.99 (roughly 4 potatoes would be used, so $0.28)
8 oz grass-fed butter $2.69 (1/4 of that used, so $0.67)
25.4oz organic olive oil for $16.99 (2 Tbsp used (1 oz), so $0.69)
10 oz organic celery at $2.99 (roughly 1/10 used, so $0.30)
2 organic red peppers $3.49 (1 used, so $1.74)
32 oz organic beef stock $3.99 (1 cup used for meat mix and 1/2c used for potatoes, so $1.50)
...that's a fairly plain Shepard's (really, cottage since it isn't lamb) pie, but it is just to give you an idea of a good base price.
THE COST OF THIS ENTIRE MEAL IS $12.99.
And WAY more nutritious than the hamburg/corn/potato classic Shepard's pie many people crave this time of year. This pie gives about 6 servings, so the price is:
$2.17 PER SERVING
Which leaves plenty of room to add more ingredients like mushrooms, kale, spices, etc.
THAT IS LESS THAN HALF THE PRICE OF THE CHICKEN SANDWICH ALONE AND ABOUT A THIRD OF THE PRICE OF THE MEAL.
And this is following the "Clean 15" for organic, so not necessarily everything is organic, but the important things are. Even with the buffalo at full price, it would be $2.50 per serving at most or $2.67 per serving for the $9.99/lb organic ground beef.
But the huge difference is, this is REAL food. Yes it takes some time to cook, but it makes several servings and freezes very well for real fast food later.
Plus, it can be even cheaper buying directly from our local farmers and keeping an eye on sales. So DON'T LET THE MARKETING AND HYPE FOOL YOU.
Fast food is easy because it's convenient, NOT because it is cheaper. And it's not only costing you your hard-earned money, but it's costing you your health.
Farmer's markets are accepting food stamps now and there are about eleventy billion amazing food bloggers out there helping us all with meal plans and budget hacks, so the availability is there. It's just the planning and prepping that can seem overwhelming.
But isn't your health worth a little planning and prep time? I think so.
PLEASE SHARE this to stomp out the myth that eating well is more expensive!!
And check out some more tips from The Kitchn on how to stick to a grocery budget!