Thursday, October 15, 2009

Food Budget During a Recession

By Jason Smathson

Well, the recession is technically over. It sure doesn't feel like it, however. Employers are still not hiring and you may have been lucky enough to keep your job, but you wouldn't mind saving money each month. Especially, on your monthly food budget. How can you do this? You'll need help from the internet.

You can do it the old fashion way and take a look into your pantry and refrigerator and jot down and make a list of what food you already have. Then, pull out your dusty cookbooks and take a look at what you can make with what you have. Write down the ingredients you need to buy and head off to the grocery store with your shopping list. That's not a bad method at all, but very time consuming. Why not use technology to make your life easier.

With all the different recipe websites now on the internet that will help you find awesome recipes, you shouldl use them. Here's how: Perform a google search on "recipes by ingredients" and google will return a list of recipe websites that you can select from.

You have now found the recipe website you like the best. Make sure to bookmark it in your web browser. Jump onto the recipe site, type in the ingredients you already have and the website should tell you what recipes you can make. A good recipe website will allow you to plan your meals for the week.

I like to do this routine each Sunday for the entire week. I add in all the ingredients I already have at home and then select 5 recipes for the week. This will generate a list of groceries I need to buy for these 5 recipes. Most sites will allow you to print out this list to take to the grocery store.

I usually spend around $50 for the both of us (my wife and I) for the week (Monday through Friday). We take our lunch every day to work (this is very important!!!). This means we spend around $200 per month and this saves us probably around $100 each month or $1,200 per year in savings. These sites are free, so give them a shot!

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