How to Cut Food Costs as a Retiree

I have always had to make my food bills as small as possible, while keeping nutrition at the top of my list. There are a few differences in budgeting for a family, to someone whom lives alone, or as a retiree living on a small budget. Mind you, not all retiree’s live along, but for those of us that do, there are a few steps in which we can save a little on our weekly food budget, and those who don’t live alone, you can separate these dishes to accommodate the two of you.

One of the ways in which you can save is, if you are making a soup, stew, spaghetti sauce, make it in a larger quantity than you will need for just one meal. As everyone whom has cooked any of these items, you know that you can not make just enough stew, soup or spaghetti sauce, for only one meal, by the time you get all the ingredients that you want in these recipes, you end up with quite a large quantity.

Separate these dishes up into individual meal servings in a freezer bowl or a freezer bag and throw them into your freezer for further use. Another recipe I make that I divide into individual meals is lasagna, I make a large dish or lasagna, which you know yourself, you can’t just make one serving of lasagna, if you are making this dish and with all the work that comes with it, you are better off making a large quantity. I have my dinner, then put the dish into the bottom of my fridge until the next day, by doing this, the lasagna has set so that when you cut into it, it does not spread all over the dish, it cuts clean so you can wrap in plastic wrap and then in tin foil. Place all the individual meals into a larger freezer bag and throw it into your freezer. This not only cuts the cost of each meal, it tastes better after it has had a chance for all the ingredients to seep into the other, making the flavor stand out better.

If you are cooking a whole chicken or a turkey and you are by yourself, take enough off for just one meal and freeze these portions in separate servings in the freezer for future use. These dishes can contain all the vegetables and potatoes on the same plate and freeze them. This not only makes a quick meal, it is better for you than the frozen ones you buy in the stores. Does it not make more sense to make one large meal and make smaller portions that can be used at any time, than to make a whole new meal every single day? I find this not only economical, but time saving as well. One thing however, if you are going to use this method, try not to keep these dishes frozen for too long, they have a tendency to get freezer burn if left too long.