How To Save Money When Cooking

Leticia Celentano Author: Leticia Celentano Time for reading: ~6 minutes Last Updated: December 01, 2022
How To Save Money When Cooking

Saving on food does not mean buying cheap products or limiting your diet. In previous articles, we looked at how to properly buy and store products so as not to throw money down the drain. It is equally important to know what and how to cook from products so that it turns out tasty, useful, and, of course, economical. It is enough to know a few basic and simple principles.

Saving on food does not mean buying cheap products or limiting your diet. In previous articles, we looked at how to properly buy and store products so as not to throw money down the drain. It is equally important to know what and how to cook from products so that it turns out to be tasty, useful, and, of course, economical . It is enough to know a few basic and simple principles.

 Economical ingredients for cooking
  • Pasta, rice, buckwheat, etc. are universal ingredients for preparing various dishes. The main thing is that porridge and pasta can be prepared both with sauces and with salads, goulash, and meat. Or make soup.

  • Legumes are tasty and nutritious. And quite affordable. In addition, their preparation does not require special skills.

  • Fish — of course, fish cannot completely replace meat, but it is worth replacing at least half of the meat menu with it. It contains many vitamins and useful trace elements, it can be prepared in various ways. And its cost is mostly lower than the cost of meat.

  • Buy seasonal vegetables and fruits. Their selection in the markets is very wide, and the prices are moderate. And you can also cook anything you want from them.

  • Buy offal. They are hearty and tasty, they can be used to prepare broths and dishes, and they are no less useful than meat.

  • If you want to prepare an economical dessert, pay attention to pies, pancakes, biscuits or casseroles. You can also bake apples, etc.



We cook economically

Prepare several dishes from one product

Another saving option is to cook several dishes from one product. Let's say, a leg of lamb is cheaper than a regular piece of meat, and you can cook both the first and the second from it at once. From the bone, make a broth for soup kharcho, and leave the meat for pilaf.

Do not forget about cereals. They are inexpensive, tasty and very useful. Instead of the usual rice, prepare something interesting from pearl barley or wheat groats. If you approach cooking with imagination, you can create real delicacies from inexpensive products.

Use leftovers

Learn to effectively use "waste" and products that have been stored for a long time. For example, you can make pancakes or pastries from expired dairy products (milk, kefir, sour cream) , crackers from stale bread, and cheese, meat, mushrooms, etc. can be used as pizza toppings.


Remember the interchangeability of ingredients

Do not experiment with new recipes from expensive products. Also, try to replace expensive ingredients in the recipe with their cheaper counterparts.

Buy seasonal and produce

Another convenient, tasty and useful way to save on food is to buy seasonal products. For example, zucchini or tomatoes are expensive in winter and spring, while in late summer and autumn these products can be bought for almost a penny.

Seasonal products are tasty and healthy (because they are mostly natural). For some reason, give preference to seasonal fruits, moreover, local ones. It is better to refrain from buying exotic and overseas fruits and vegetables, because firstly, they are always more expensive, and secondly, they lose most of their useful properties during transportation.

Do not forget about cereals

Various cereals are very profitable budget products. You can cook a lot of dishes from them. For example, wheat groats can be used to prepare young porridge, a side dish for meat or fish, soups, salads, and an independent hot dish.

Replace ready-made breakfast cereals with oatmeal with dried fruits. Also, give up instant cereals and buy cheaper cereals. Cereals can also be used as a side dish, in soup and filling for pies. It will also be cheaper than buying ready-made pastries. The most profitable dish in terms of cost and satiety is soup. It can be prepared both with meat and with lean meat, supplemented with various vegetables and cereals.

Cook from vegetables

Use mushrooms - you can prepare many tasty, hearty and healthy dishes from them. For example, potato pie with mushrooms is a great breakfast for the whole family, fried potatoes with mushrooms are a good option for lunch, and if you add a salad, you get a hearty dinner. Also, mushrooms can be added to salads, stewed together with cabbage, and roasted .

Potatoes, for example, are a universal product. Many dishes can be prepared from it - fried, boiled, baked. Potatoes can be used to make zrazy, cutlets, dumplings, pancakes, casserole, or even a pie (not only with filling, but with potato dough). So you will learn how to cook economically , but without compromising the quality of food.

Do not ignore the cabbage. Firstly, the choice of varieties is very rich, and the choice of dishes is even wider. Dumplings with and without meat, pies, dumplings, simply stewed cabbage or vegetable patties. Choose and cook.

Follow these principles when preparing any dishes. Vegetables are not only useful and tasty, but also economical .


Let's save on meat

Meat is almost the most expensive product from the entire diet. Let's look at some tips on how to reduce the cost of the most expensive part of our diet. The following principles should be followed for other products as well.

In order to save on meat, it is necessary

  • Serve the meat with a side dish.

  • Cook goulash with meat.

  • Cook smaller chops and cutlets.

We use offal instead of meat

By-products help a lot in terms of savings . Many dishes can be prepared from the liver . Fried liver in sour cream sauce, liver cake for the holiday table, pate, etc. From kidneys, wings, etc., you can make a delicious soup or broth. You can also make pie filling from any by-products.

We dilute the meat with vegetables

If you add vegetables to meat, you can not only make the dish more economical . And more useful. You can prepare a variety of stews, roasts, cutlets and meatballs from meat and vegetables. And, of course, pie fillings.

We use meat sparingly

A 1 kg piece of meat can be fried into chops and eaten all at once. Or you can prepare several dishes. For example, 300 g of meat will make a delicious pilaf, 300 g can be used in borscht, and another 400 g are not cutlets, to which you can add potatoes, onions and carrots. As a result, from the same 1 kg of meat, we will get 3 hearty dishes that the whole family will like.

Buy bones with meat

Bones with leftover meat are inexpensive, and you can also cook several dishes from them. Use the bones to make broth for soup or borscht. Remove the bones, cool, and remove the meat from them. In a frying pan, fry onions, grated carrots, add meat from bones, a few spoons of sour cream, salt, pepper, greens and get gravy for the side dish.

How to cook delicious food without meat

Beans, peas, chickpeas, lentils are healthy, filling, and will allow you to save on food. In terms of its nutritional and useful properties, beans are not far behind meat, and in some cases even prevail. If you don't want to give up meat altogether, you can mix it up - for example, minced meat for cutlets with boiled beans. And lentil soup is a very nutritious dish. Which can completely replace the entire lunch.


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