Everyone is feeling the pinch now with grocery items inflated. But you DON’T have to spend hundreds of dollars on your weekly shop to eat well, even if you have a big family.
Eating well can be considered expensive and sometimes not weight-loss-friendly.
The Healthy Mummy and the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge allows you to enjoy your food, without strict rules yet still be healthy and nutritious enough to kick your goals!
These mums from our Healthy Mummy community share their shopping, meal prep and budget tips.
Our mums share their incredible budget tips to help you save big bucks
Mum-of-four Manda lost 25kg in 2021 and has been maintaining it in 2022. She says she has been saving money by following the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge.
“I know The Healthy Mummy helps keep my grocery shop under $300 a fortnight (including nappies). Also, the past six months I’ve saved average $100/month on fuel by walking more.”
Manda’s top BUDGET tips for saving money
1. Swap similar ingredients
For instance, don’t by sour cream if you already have Greek yoghurt. Don’t buy ingredients that you know you don’t like just because it’s in the recipe, I leave the wine out of the spaghetti recipe, still tastes amazing.
2. Shop in your freezer first
This week I shopped in my freezer first, I had a bulk buy chicken breast so I saved $20 automatically, with my total shop under $200!
3. Repeat meals and freeze left overs
I cooked the butter chicken and sweet and salty mince, so dinners are set for the week. I also cook up snacks for the kids, cookie tart, choc chip banana bread, and sausage rolls- lunch box fillers and afternoon snacks to avoid the dreaded party raid!
Right now money is tight. So every penny I keep in my pocket is a blessing. It’s very comforting to know I can feed my family healthy food for less and that there is still money in my account for school activities or if the kids need new undies,” she says.
Now that I have a little spare money, I’m more comfortable taking the kids out for the day, even for a drive to a new park, I can afford the extra fuel. I don’t feel as guilty doing my beauty treatments, or my hair appointment either.
Elizabeth is a mum of two and has lost 30kg in 12 months.
“I can’t put a dollar amount on how much we’ve saved by me signing up to The Healthy Mummy, but I know we haven’t been buying lunches or snacks during the day (maybe a treat once a month) because we always have food here,” she says.
“Planning our lunches and dinners has made a huge impact to our takeaway expenses all for the better!
“I would estimate about $50 a week in savings.”
Elizabeth’s BUDGET tips for saving money
- Shop at home first
- Plan meals based on what everyone enjoys (that way there’s less waste)
- Stick to your planned food.
- Allow yourself a treat once a fortnight or month – having something to look forward to helps me stay on track and work harder.
“We are putting the money towards house renovations. Every dollar counts when renovating!
“Anything with mince is great – so versatile, San chow bow, chilli con carne, nourish bowls. Also, love meals that can be used multiple ways – the 3-pot chicken meal is amazing!”
Jasmine is a mum-of-three and has lost a total of 30kg and counting in the last 10 months.
“You definitely save money following The Healthy Mummy and it’s definitely not true what they say about eating healthier needs to cost more,” she says.
“I can’t tell you exactly how much I have saved in the 10 months but I have been able to bring my food shopping down to $330 a fortnight, including cleaning supplies and toiletries I used to spend $450.”
Jasmine’s top budgeting tips
1. Start with your meal plan
Look for meals that use the same ingredients like 3 sausage meals of 4 mince meals so that you can buy the meat in bulk and save money that way.
2. Make up one big batch of one thing
Divide it out for the whole week for your lunches having the same thing for lunch for 7 days will save you money.
3. Make your snacks
Get the kiddies involved and make muffins, loafs and cookies. Fill those lunch boxes with healthy homemade snacks.
4. Use the shopping list provided on The Healthy Mummy app
It will tell you how much you need to buy to avoid overbuying also look in your cupboard and see what you already have or even pick meals from things you already have in your cupboard.
5. Do your food shopping at more then one place
I found that I shop at Costco for my mince, eggs and other things that I can buy in bulk to save a bit of money. I also do veggie shopping at our local veggie shop, as it’s a lot cheaper and can buy in bigger quantities.
I then do the rest of my food shopping online it stops those unnecessary purchases that you see when you shop. I do click and collect so then you don’t get charged a delivery fee.
6. Use your leftovers
You can turn your leftovers into another meal for the next day or pop in a container for you or your family to take to work.
“I love the fact that i can have a low shopping budget and know I’m still feeding my family nutritious meals that everyone enjoys.”
Fi first lost 34kg in 14 months with The Healthy Mummy after her first baby was born and has lost 14kg after her second.
“We have worked out we are saving about $100 a week with The Healthy Mummy,” she says.
“We do this by meal planning, weekly shopping, shopping what is in season, bulk cooking, shopping at greengrocers and Aldi, and meal prepping.”
Fi’s tips for saving money on groceries
- Shop sales
- Buy food in season, as it lasts longer and in general is cheaper.
- Invest in fruit and veg keepers for your fridge. It’s a larger out lay but will save toy from throwing out fresh produce and having to go get more.
- Meal prep and meal plan. I hate waste, so if I already have the food and it’s planned I’m less likely to not use it.
- Weekly shopping. This is massive. You are more likely to work more money going daily to the shops. All the extra little things we add to our basket add up quickly.
- Write a shopping list. It’s a great way to keep you on track at the shops. The Healthy Mummy has one in the app.
Nicole has three girls and she signed up to The Healthy Mummy nine months ago and has lost 18kg in that time.
Nicole no longer buys junk food
“I have definitely saved money since signing up to The Healthy Mummy,” she says. “A lot of people think it costs more to eat healthy, which is not the case.
“I’d say we have saved at least $100 – $150 or so a week on groceries, we no longer by soft drink and blocks of chocolate and no longer have take away on a weekly basis.”
She no longer has takeaways – very rarely
We have takeaway maybe once or twice a month sometimes, but even then now I will order a small pizza instead of a large pizza saving money there straight away.
“We like to cook homemade pizza on Friday nights no which has saved heaps of money in takeaway pizzas! I cook meals that have similar ingredients or that we can spread over two nights.”
Nicole makes her snacks
In fact, Nicole says she has saved money buy making healthy snacks instead of buying packaged snacks.
Nicole shops online
“I have also save money by doing click-and-collect orders it really helps me to stay focused on what we really need and I’m less tempted to buy things that aren’t necessary.
“I can also see how much my shopping is before checking out. I was demoted to buy the $1 chocolate bars when I went to the supermarket. Im so proud to say that I don’t do that anymore.
“It feels great to know that we are eating healthier and saving money at the same time. We’re not saving the money for anything specific but living a fun family life. We have more family days out.”
Nicole top tips for saving money
- Cook meals with the ingredients/staples you have in your pantry
- Cook meals that you know you can get two nights out of
- Cook meals that utilise similar ingredients.