These days we are all looking for ways to save money. With most of our budgets tied up with non-negotiable bills, it seems that reducing grocery expenses is the most practical way to make our paychecks go the distance. Breakfast is an important meal nutritionally, and it is also the easiest meal to do on the cheap. Here are a few tips to help you provide a nutritious breakfast for your family for pennies a day.
1. Banish boxed cereals from your home. The same goes for all packaged, processed and ready-to-eat breakfast options. Though convenient, these nutrient-deficient, sugar-laden options are terrible for your health, and pack a real punch to your wallet. With a box of cereal running anywhere from $3-$5 a box, along with cereal bars and Pop-Tarts, the cost really adds up, especially if you are feeding kids. Though these are easy to depend upon for a quick, on-the-go breakfast, they are also a budget buster and must go if you are serious about saving money.
2. Go back to the farm. Eggs and milk, especially if obtained from good sources, are an extremely good breakfast option. Eggs are loaded with protein (6 grams per egg) and will give both you and your kids the energy and brainpower you need to get through the morning. With eggs around $2 a dozen, this is a much more affordable option than the boxed cereal route. Also, with orange juice running from $3-$4 per carton, and offering no more than fortified vitamins and concentrated fructose, drinking a glass of milk or eating an orange offers more nutritionally and also goes further financially.
3. Explore your oatmeal options. Oatmeal, especially steel cut or rolled oats instead of the quick variety, has greatly decreased in popularity since the advent of boxed cereal. Indeed, many people don’t even know how to make oatmeal unless it comes in little packets with microwaveable instructions. This is unfortunate. Oatmeal is loaded with fiber, vitamin E and protein. Oatmeal also contains important cancer-fighting components and consuming it is tied to reducing risk of heart attack and lowering cholesterol. Finally, oatmeal costs just pennies per serving. Transition into oatmeal gradually, as your family’s taste may not be inclined towards it at first. Serving oatmeal with some honey, maple syrup, cinnamon, or sliced fruit on top is a great way to introduce it to your family.
4. Go the smoothie route. Smoothies have really increased in popularity recently, and for good reason. Yogurt and kefir smoothies put much needed good bacteria into your gut, and adding fruit makes them delicious and loaded with vitamins and flavor. Making your own yogurt is much cheaper than buying it in the store and it is relatively easy. I like to buy frozen strawberries in bulk and freeze peeled bananas to blend up in smoothies for my kids. Add a little bit of maple syrup for a sweetener and you have a delicious breakfast that takes minutes to prepare. Cllick here to check out my raw milk yogurt recipe.
5. Enjoy homemade quick breads. Homemade is almost always cheaper than store-bought, and it is always better for you and your family. Find pancake and muffin recipes that you like and make them up in quantities that enable you to freeze them for later use. Keeping bulk flour on hand and blueberries in the freezer are great ways to guarantee you can make a warm, homemade breakfast that is a crowd as well as a budget pleaser. Check out this link to find healthful breakfast recipes.
Saving money take determination and forethought. Is boxed cereal easier than the suggestions I’ve given above? Absolutely. However, the financial and physical costs of depending on refined foods for your nutrition are not worth it. Make “homemade” your goal for breakfast and reap the benefits!