8 ways you can afford 3 square meals in these hard times

In times of economic difficulty, securing three nutritious meals a day can be a challenge. With rising food prices and stagnant wages, many find it increasingly hard to maintain a balanced diet without breaking the bank.

Ways you can afford 3 square meals in these hard times

Here are practical strategies to help you afford three square meals daily, ensuring you and your family stay nourished and healthy even when times are tough.

Meal planning is a crucial step in budgeting your food expenses. Plan your meals weekly, focusing on utilizing ingredients across multiple meals to minimize waste. This approach not only helps in buying what is necessary but also in avoiding impulse purchases that can add up.


Purchasing staples like rice, beans, pasta, and canned goods in bulk can lead to significant savings. These items have long shelf lives and can be the backbone of many nutritious meals. Shop at wholesale stores or look for bulk deals in supermarkets to take advantage of lower prices.

Fruits and vegetables are less expensive when they are in season. Additionally, buying local produce not only often costs less but also supports local farmers and reduces transportation costs and spoilage.

Cooking meals at home is generally cheaper than eating out. Home-cooked meals can be nutritious and tailored to your dietary needs. Cooking in batches can save time and ensure that there are always affordable and healthy meals available at home.


If you have space, consider growing your own vegetables and herbs. Gardening can be a rewarding way to cut costs and ensure a supply of fresh produce. Items like tomatoes, peppers, leafy greens, and herbs are particularly cost-effective and easy to grow.

Meat can be expensive, so reducing its consumption can lower grocery bills significantly. Try incorporating more plant-based proteins like lentils, chickpeas, and beans into your diet. These are not only cheaper but also healthy alternatives to meat.


Minimize food waste by storing food properly and using leftovers creatively. Transform leftovers into new meals, and freeze excess food before it spoils to extend its life.

Opt for nutritious, filling snacks like oatmeal, yogurt, or homemade popcorn, which are cheaper and healthier than processed snacks. These can tide you over between meals without costing too much.

While economic hardships can make it challenging to afford three square meals a day, employing strategic planning, smart shopping, and a bit of creativity can significantly ease the burden.

By adopting these strategies, you can ensure that you and your family enjoy nutritious meals daily without straining your finances.


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