by Ed Firmin
Posted on Friday, August 28th, 2015 at 09:31
It’ll soon be time to pack up your belongings and head back to university. Some of you will be moving into your own house for the first time, renting with friends.
Money may be tight, ensuring you’ve got enough to cover the bills each month, so you’ll probably be trying to work out how to eat on a budget. But eating on a budget shouldn’t mean eating McDonald’s or frozen pizzas for seven days of the week, with a bit of careful planning, it is possible to eat healthily on a budget.
You want to ensure you are eating your 5 a day in terms of fruit of veg, as it helps you to operate better, keeps your energy levels up, keeps your skin fresh and clear and helps to ward off colds and other illnesses by giving you the essential vitamins and minerals you need.
So, how can you eat well on a budget?
You need to plan your shopping list, to get the cupboards stocked up. If you have essentials to hand, you’re less likely to reach for the takeaway menu or dip into the freezer for a ready meal.
You should purchase dry ingredients such as pasta, noodles, rice, tinned chopped tomatoes, baked beans, tinned tuna, tinned sweetcorn, mixed herbs and spices.
If you know you’re not great at keeping food fresh, then buy frozen versions to keep in the freezer. If you’ve got frozen chicken breasts, frozen veg, soy sauce and noodles, you’ve always got a quick and easy chicken stir fry for whenever you need it.
For the fridge, cheese is always good to have to flavour meals, eggs are perfect to make a cheeky omelette if you’re struggling for ideas, and yoghurt makes an alternative breakfast if you’ve run out of milk for your cereal.
It’s always a great idea to buy an extra loaf of bread to keep in the freezer, I know I always used to come down for breakfast in the morning and one of my flatmates had nicked the last slice of bread for their toast!
Now is a good time to start practicing some recipes, things like chilli con carne and lasagne are cheap and easy to make, and you can include lots of vegetables to ensure you are getting your full portion for the day. I would advise bulk cooking, always make twice as much as you need if you are cooking a big meal like this, as the leftovers can go straight into the freezer, and will be there if you haven’t got time to cook one evening. Just pop a portion in the microwave to defrost. A slow cooker is also a great way to batch cook food, you can easily pop some meat, veg and a packet sachet into the cooker in the morning, and when you come home at night, voila! a perfect stew.
While you are still at home, get your mum or dad to show you a few things.
They’ll have some tricks up their sleeve to pass on, I’ve no doubt. So get your pinny on, and get cooking!
If you have any other questions about your property before you move in for the new academic year, then I’m around to answer any queries, you can contact me here.