Nifty Thrifty Week: Day 3 with Kelly Hancock

Welcome to day three of our Nifty Thrifty week featuring ideas, stories, recipes and GIVEAWAYS from five frugal guests.

(And it all started with my devotion entitled The Boomerang of Blessing. You can click here to read it but be sure to come back!)

Up today is a woman whose book I was asked to endorse a while back. I’d never heard of her but I quickly put her at the tip-top of my “Favorite frugal authors” list. And I absolutely love her main reason for living frugally–so you can give more money away!

When Kelly left her job as a successful sales rep for a Fortune 500 company to stay home with her newborn, she learned quickly to live on less than half the family’s former income. With no special training (and an initial repulsion to budgeting of any kind!), she figured if she could do it, anyone could.

With Luke 12:24 as her cornerstone, she shares her lifestyle of a growing faith, her passion for healthy foods, and her desire to give back as much as possible on her daily cost-cutting blog, FaithfulProvisions.com, and in her book, Saving Savvy: Smart and Easy Ways to Cut Your Spending in Half and Raise Your Standard of Living…and Giving.

Today here as part of Nifty Thrifty Week, she is teaching us to eat healthy on a budget. She is also giving away three copies of her book, Saving Savvy: Smart and Easy Ways to Cut Your Spending in Half and Raise Your Standard of Living…and Giving. As with all the posts this week, you have until Sunday night at midnight EST to comment and be entered in the drawing. All the winners will be announced Monday.

Now, enjoy Kelly’s idea-packed post!

5 Strategies for Eating Healthy on a Budget

One of the most frequently asked questions I get from my readers is, How can my family eat healthy and stay on our budget? Unfortunately, it’s true that eating healthy foods can cause your grocery to bill to rise. Coupons are plentiful for processed foods along with unhealthy snacks and drinks, but how do you save money if you’re trying to avoid those items and striving to eat more healthy foods? There are several cost-cutting strategies that I always count on to help me save money on the healthy foods my family enjoys. These are things I incorporate regularly when I head to the grocery store.

Eat Seasonal Produce. Long before we had supermarkets and wholesale clubs, we had farms and farmers. My grandmother lived on a farm, and she taught me to understand that God has a reason for everything He does, including the order of the seasons and the harvest that is produced throughout the year. It is all part of His divine, orderly way of doing things. Even the fact that foods have different colors, representing different nutrients, indicates that there must be an order to God’s eating plan for us. If we eat what the land produces, when it produces it, we will not only achieve great benefits for our bodies, but we will save money too. When food is in season, it is at its lowest price.

*Download my FREE Seasonal Produce Guide HERE.

Use Your Freezer. With fresh foods comes the dilemma of how to store and preserve them, so you can enjoy and not waste them by having to throw out rotten or spoiled food. Flash-freezing fresh foods is an easy process that will save you lots of money and time. Use the process below to freeze items at their peak of freshness. This process eliminates clumps, so you can scoop out individual or family-size portions with ease. (Watch my How to Flash Freeze video HERE.)

  • Dice vegetables or fruit.
  • Place the small pieces on a cookie sheet lined with waxed paper.
  • Place the sheet in the freezer for one to two hours. Once the food is frozen, transfer to freezer bags (labeled with the name of the item and the date) and return to the freezer.

Another food preservation method, canning, is not really difficult, it just takes some time. Learn one of the easiest canning methods, Hot Water Bath Canning HERE.

Utilize Meal Planning.  It is critical to create a meal plan before you head to the grocery store. It can be as simple as knowing what meals you will be making, instead of just shopping for whatever your mood dictates. Meal planning answers the “What’s for dinner?” question, but it also answers the “What am I shopping for?” question that comes first. By having a meal plan, I have peace of mind, feel better about what I will be eating during the week, and save so much time. Check out my Recipe Box HERE for easy recipes your whole family will love.

*Download my FREE Meal Planning Template HERE.

Cook from Scratch. I love to cook, but I really love the savings I get when I make my own healthy recipes as an alternative to pre-packaged foods. Ease into cooking from scratch by starting with something simple, like my Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins or my Homemade Pizza Sauce. You’ll avoid extra costs along with the extra preservatives and higher sodium content.

Stock ahead. A paradigm shift occurs in your mind when you realize that if you only buy what’s on sale, and you buy enough to last you until the next sale, you will save money. Most grocery stores now offer weekly sale prices on organic produce and meat. Check the weekly sales flier for the featured organic deals, and buy enough of the item to last you until the next sale. Learn more about how to stock ahead HERE.

What are some of your favorite tips for eating healthy on a budget? Comment and you might win my book!

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  • I cook half again or up to double the meat for one meal and then repurpose into casserole and 5Ben into soup, adding only cheaper ingredients. That way we don’t feel like we are always eating casseroles.

  • Link exchange is nothing else but it is just placing the other person’s webpage link on your page at suitable place and other person will also do similar for you.

  • We shop at Aldi for produce that is very good. I only buy what we will eat in about 3 days and then go back mid week to restock!

  • I like to shop at aldi and then go to my local grocery store on a double coupon day, but I found that while I end up getting a couple good deals, I also end up buying things we don’t need. Thus, I found that by shopping at aldi almost exclusively I save so much, because I’m not tempted to try some new thing because it’s on sale or looks good. Aldi has most of what I need and keeps me on track. I will run into another store on occasion for the things aldi doesn’t offer.

  • Hi Kelly! Your recipes are sooo yummy!! Thanks for sharing these awesome tips. My favorite way to eat healthy right now is buying produce from a farm 2 miles from my home. He (farmer) has different veggies throughout the year. And they are organic & cheaper than grocery store! And taste way better since they are freshly picked. :)

  • Please enter me in the drawing! Living on a tight budget as a retired teacher so always looking for economical ideas!

  • planting seeds instead of buying the actual plant can be cheaper. shopping at a cheaper grocery store, with a list and a plan really helps. NOT eating out (even though it’s tempting)

  • Thanks for all the great tips. I save money by using coupons and shopping at stores that double up to .99 and who have their own store coupons, using their saving card.I usually get toothpaste free just by using coupons and hardly ever pay full price for items.

  • My biggest tip for eating healthy on a budget is pre-planning…don’t step foot in the grocery store without a list and {GULP} stick to it!! Sit down with the family-make up a week or two of menus and a coordinating grocery list and head out to Aldi’s..see the savings roll in and the pressure of 5 p.m. roll away :) Blessings y’all

  • Thanks for this great information! Trying to provide healthy meals on a budget is tricky. I’m starting to use my freezer more and prepare some meals in advance.

  • I shop a grocery store that has all marked down items, thrift bread stores & freeze extra bread Also I buy chicken breasts on sale & cook all of them on the grill & cook up rice & pasta & freeze Then when time is short WHALA I pull some chicken out do quesadillas or chicken & spaghetti or chicken noodle soup or chicken salad If you freeze your cooked spaghetti, drain pat really dry, spread on cookie sheet & spray with Pam & toss This way it won’t get freezer burned! Go get some chicken on sale, marinate cook on gill Bag it up & be sooo :) that you are conquering the meal crunch time & budget!!!

  • Because of Bountiful Baskets we are eating more fruits and vegetables and are able to buy items in large quanities and either freeze or can them.

  • Inspiring and exciting, looking forward to putting new ideas to work! Thank you for being part of this week of blessings!

  • Ladies, the 99 cent store is a great place to find fresh fruit and veggies. Just ask what day they restock and make sure you are there for the freshest produce.

  • We grow apples, strawberries, and hot peppers. We’re planning on growing some more items in containers. Hopefully that will help our food budget.