Meal subscription boxes sure are convenient, but you can easily make them yourself for less money. Check out these tips on How to Save Money by Making Your Own Meal Kits.
Subscription meal kits are all the rage now. It's easy to see why, too. They offer super convenience and allow you to make homemade meals from scratch instead of going out to eat. They are delivered to your door, so it seems that it couldn't be any easier, or could it?
If you are on a budget, you may be wondering if these meal kits are worth the money. Even if you aren't on a budget and simply enjoy the convenience of them, you really can save money by making your own without adding too much inconvenience to your life. Here are some tips on How to Save Money by Making Your Own Meal Kits.
How to Save Money by Making Your Own Meal Kits
Pick simple recipes. Most of these meal kits tout that they are gourmet, yet, they are pretty simple. This proves that gourmet doesn't have to be complicated. Pick simple recipes with very few ingredients and prep work and your meal kits will be easy to assemble and put together. Additionally, this is a money saver as well since they fewer the ingredients, the lower the cost. When you have your recipes, print them out so you can include them in your kits so anyone can pick a kit and cook it.
Get the right storage equipment. Using the right type of storage equipment is vital to any sort of meal prepping or batch cooking plan for the meal kits. I recommend using glass as it is very food safe and it is easy to clean. You can buy glass food storage containers in all kinds of sizes, too, so even the smallest ingredient amount will fit in them. Additionally, using glass containers cuts down on environmental waste, something many of the meal kit companies contribute to.
Cook all proteins at once and portion out vegetables. Cooking all of your proteins like beans and meats at once using slow cookers, rice cookers, and pressure cookers not only save you a ton of time because you can be doing something else while they cook, but it also saves you money. You can buy your proteins in bulk at much lower prices. You can start portioning out and chopping veggies as well, but keep in mind more water filled and pungent veggies like onions may need to be frozen before you get to them to avoid going bad.
Cook in season. One way that these companies save on their own costs for delivering meal kits to you is by making seasonal recipes. You can save money by doing so as well.
Set aside some time on your weekend to create your meal kits for the week. Most of us have some downtime at some point during the week. Putting together your meal kits is a great use of ‘extra' time. The good news is, it doesn't even mean you can relax while you do it. If you cook your proteins and portion out your vegetables, all that's left is just putting your meal kits together. I like to use refrigerator storage bins to separate meal kits. They are inexpensive and easy to label with the days of the week.
If you don't count the time it takes to cook the proteins (which can be done almost totally hands free with the use of appliances like slow cookers), you can assemble an entire week's worth of meal kits in less than an hour. When it comes time to cook them, they will be done in no time flat. This is just like the meal kits you would spend more money on by not putting them together yourself.
One more tip to keep in mind: Even cooked food like beans or chicken has a shelf life in the fridge. Make sure to place some of your meal kits in the freezer that will be eaten towards the end of the week. As you go through your days, pull one out to let it thaw overnight in the fridge.