What Happened to Home Cooked Meals?

Encouragement and Tips

for Healthier Eating

In most developed nations fewer and fewer meals are prepared at home.

In 2014 less than 60% of meals eaten at home were actually prepared at home, according to a study by NPD, reported by the Washington Post.  Instead we:

Eat out  –  Call out  –  Take out

 Processed  –  Frozen

and

Pre-packaged meals

 

Why do we not eat home-cooked meals?

The main reason is time. Most of us are busier than we used to be. Both parents or partners work, families are involved in after-school and after-work activities, singles have an active social life. Generally, life just keeps us busy.

But is eating away from home good for us?

Most of us know the answer to that question. We know it isn’t good for us.

Eating out negatively affects our pocket book, waistline, health, as well as social interactions and family bonds.

Eating at home

Will save you money

Keep you healthier

Helps form closer bonds with loved ones

 

How can I cook at home, eat healthy and save $ when I have little time?

  1. Plan your meals, one week at a time.

    1. Look at weekly store flyers to see what’s on sale.
    2. Buy fresh food in season, whenever possible
    3. Create a meal-plan according to what is in season and on sale.
    4. See what’s on hand in your home
    5. Write a grocery list and stick to it
    6. Cut coupons or save coupons with store apps to save $
    7. If you like, shop online and pick groceries up at your favorite store. They will be packed and ready to go. The service is usually free and available at many stores.

*Notes: I use the app Cozi. It keeps all my notes, meal plans, shopping lists and more in one place, on the computer and syncs to my phone. This way I always have my list with me wherever I go.

I have a running list on Cozi and a board on the fridge. I write items down when I see I am getting low on pantry staples.

Many grocery stores have apps you can download that save time and money through store coupons when you are shopping online or in store.

 

  1. Go shopping once a week

    1. Plan your route
    2. Eat a snack or meal before you shop
    3. Pack ice packs and cooler into car
    4. Put food away as soon as you get home
    5. Divide meats into meal portions and freeze

 

  1. Do the prep work ahead of time

    1. Take a couple of hours to do the prep work for several days
    2. Cook in batches to have leftovers
    3. Make enough to freeze some

 

  1. Option: Create a food co-op with family or friends

    • Each family cooks one meal a week, enough for the group
    • Meals are exchanged
    • If you have 7 members in your group = 7 meals prepared

 

Read the next segment:

Plan your meals one week at a time Save time and money

A weekly planner of meals
Plan your meals for an entire week ahead of time. Save time and money.

Stay tuned for more tips!

I will discuss each point in more detail in the days to come.

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