How do I find cheap but healthy food easily?

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Posted by Siddhant Chawla (MONEY FORUMS: 2, Answers: 0)
Asked on March 17, 2017 9:47 pm
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Great question! Quite a few of our bloggers have explored this. When done right, using coupons and digital apps can help you cut down on costs without necessarily compromising on quality (Melanie Lockert explores a few such tools in “Coupon Clipping the Digital Way”: https://centsai.com/technology-blogs/coupon-clipping-the-digital-way/). Just be careful not to overuse them (Lance Cothern has some tips on that front: https://centsai.com/frugality-blogs/coupons-may-cost-you-more-than-you-save/).
Lance also gives some of my favorite advice for finding good/healthy food for cheap: keeping an eye out for generic/grocery store brands of the foods you like is super helpful. And generic brands sometimes come out to be even cheaper than if you used a coupon on a name-brand version of the same items, and they’re often just as good! In fact, for folks like me who live in cities like New York, there’s an even better way to do this: when you get produce, instead of going to a traditional grocery store, go to a nearby produce stand. The prices are often insanely cheap, and you can make yourself a delicious salad or some tasty hash browns with whatever they’re selling. (The last time I bought onions, I got a hefty bag for just $1.50 from my regular produce stand!)
Katie Simon also has some great tips for people with dietary restrictions, if that’s up your alley (https://centsai.com/health-and-beauty-blogs/6-grocery-store-hacks-for-those-on-special-diets/).
You can also cut back in other ways, like going on grocery freezes if/when you realize that you may have an over-stocked pantry (Pauline Paquin once did an extreme version of that – she went a full month without getting groceries, though I usually only do it for a week: https://centsai.com/cost-of-living-blogs/buying-groceries-food-budget/). And Jessica Ozar has a few other tips for both cutting back and cutting costs when it comes to buying food (https://centsai.com/health-and-beauty-blogs/why-i-prefer-wild-salmon-over-star-wars-or-prada/). While scaling back your budget (whether through a temporary grocery freeze or through reducing your budget in other areas) isn’t strictly along the lines of finding cheap food, it *will* free up a bit of your budget for making a few of the more expensive healthy food choices that you might want to make.

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Posted by Evan Sachs (MONEY FORUMS: 2, Answers: 3)
Answered: March 19, 2017 4:56 pm