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cheap tricks: cut food costs, not quality

These days, everyone is trying to find ways to cut corners in the household budget. One place to do that is in the kitchen. Here are some cheap tricks to try that will lower costs yet not sacrifice the quality of the meals you serve your family:

  • Buy fewer packaged “convenience” foods, which usually contain unhealthy levels of fat, sugar, sodium and additives. Focus on whole foods, which are healthier— and cheaper, to boot.
  • Learn how to cook different cultural dishes, such as Asian stir-fry, which usually call for less expensive ingredients.
  • Make good use of seasonal produce (such as berries and corn), as it is
    generally dirt cheap when in full harvest. Choose frozen vegetables and fruit when fresh produce is out of season.
  • Reduce the portion sizes of the meals you plan to serve. When it comes
    to more expensive items, like meat and fish, smaller portions can reduce your weekly food costs and maybe even help you lose weight.
  • Cook several meals at one time, perhaps on a rainy weekend afternoon while you are stuck inside doing chores. Roast a whole chicken on a Sunday, and use the leftovers to make chicken tacos and chicken chili during the workweek.

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