Lose weight on your low carb lifestyle while saving money.
After the excess of the holidays, you may feel that you have overextended yourself on carbs and your credit card balance. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to live a healthy and energizing low carb lifestyle while being smart about your finances. The so-called convenience of eating out, food-delivery apps or hitting the drive thru all have the potential to bust your budget, nor do they do any favors for your waistline. With some simple planning and smart shopping and cooking strategies, this year will be off to a great start:
Love the leftovers. Make dishes that can serve double-duty as lunch the next day or double recipes so that you have dinner for one or two extra nights.
Meat for less money. Beef tenderloin is a wonderfully tasty cut of meat (with a price tag to match), but cuts like chuck and sirloin contain more marbling (streaks of fat that run throughout the meat), which makes them super flavorful, tender and juicy. They’re best suited to slow cooking, so think stews, soups, roasts and braises. Buy whole chickens, which are almost always less expensive than prepackaged cuts of chicken. You can also roast a whole chicken and use it for multiple meals and snacks throughout the week. Inexpensive cuts of pork like tenderloin, rib chops, shoulder and butt are very tasty when properly prepared. With a little planning and a crockpot or slow cooker, you will have a delicious low carb meal, like Pork Stew with Hominy and Collard, ready to eat after a long day.
There’s more than meat. Prepare eggs in any number of ways: scrambled, poached, in an omelet or even a crust-less quiche. Tofu and other soy foods can stand in for chicken and turkey, while providing a variety of nutrients. Check your freezer section for vegetarian protein crumbles—they make a great foil for ground beef and transform into chili or Bolognese in no time.
Buy in season. Avoid buying fruit and veggies when they’re out of season—that’s when they’re the most expensive. When produce is flown in from other countries, it necessarily costs more.
Save on snacks. When it comes to low carb snacks like bars and shakes and other convenience items that fit your low carb lifestyle, look for store specials and shop in bulk. Visit Atkins for deals on products, plus easy snack recipes
Skip the salad-in-a-bag. Greens that have been washed, chopped and sealed in a bag will always be far more expensive than those that are sold as individual heads.
But… convenience can still be cost-conscious. If you’re faced with the choice of eating out or cooking at home, and a salad-in-the-bag, packaged spiralized zucchini or pre-riced cauliflower and pre-cooked rotisserie chicken will allow you to throw together a fast and easy low carb meal (plus leftovers), by all means go for it.
Keep a variety of oils. Buy the larger containers of less expensive oils—coconut oil, olive oil, peanut oil—to use for stir frying and sautéing, and keep smaller containers of flavorful, high-quality, cold-pressed oils, such as extra virgin olive oil, walnut or hazelnut oil, to drizzle on soups, salads and veggies.
Shop in the bulk food section. This is a great way to get nuts, seeds, beans and grains at lower prices, because you’re not paying any premium for fancy marketing or packaging.
With these tips, you may find you’re spending less money on food than ever before, while enjoying a variety of low carb snacks and meals.