Get Back in the Kitchen and Save

Learn to cook and learn to save! The Value Guru shares why cooking at home is more affordable and healthy.

pesto ingredients: basil leaves, Parmesan cheese, pine nuts

With many New Year’s resolutions centered on eating healthier and saving money, it’s easy to do both when you learn to cook or cook at home more often. Plus, you get the added benefit of sharing delicious meals with your family, cooked just the way you like them.Why is cooking at home more affordable and healthy?

  • Going out to eat costs both time and money. Whether you’re dining alone or with your family, it takes time to get to the restaurant, wait to be seated, order, wait for your meal to be served, eat and then drive home. In less time than it takes you to eat out, you can prepare a home-cooked meal.

  • It’s no secret that it costs more to dine out than to cook at home. How much more? Of course it depends on where you are dining out but a family of four can easily spend $25 + for one meal whereas recipes such as Ancient Grain Stuffed Red Bell Peppers opens in a new tab, featured in the latest issue of The Whole Deal costs approximately $3.86* per serving or less than $16 – and you don’t have to leave a tip!

  • When cooking at home, you are in charge! In many cases, restaurants use salt, sugar and oil to enhance the flavor of their dishes and the ingredients can be over used. If you’re cooking, you can control how much of these ingredients are used as well as being able to customize the recipes to your taste and dietary needs. Reducing the amount of salt, sugar and oil in your meals can be a healthier option.

  • Make more, eat less! When cooking at home, it’s easy to make additional quantities so you can have leftovers for lunch the next day or have dinner ready to go. And, you’re in charge of portion sizes so you don’t have to worry about eating that huge serving of fries that came with the burger you ordered. Most of us tend to eat what is served to us and what we pay for at a restaurant. By cooking for yourself, you control the portion sizes.

Ready to get started? These easy, healthy “Learn to Cook” recipes prove that cooking at home is a money-saver. Get these basics under your belt and you’ll be ready to take on any recipe that comes your way:

*We do our best to estimate the cost of ingredients used in each recipe but slight market variations are possible.

Hungry for more? Try these recipes, featured in the January/February issue of The Whole Deal opens in a new tab, that are easy to prepare and easy on your wallet.

*We do our best to estimate the cost of ingredients used in each recipe but slight market variations are possible.

So go ahead and save by learning to cook and cooking more often at home. And remember, we’re here to help! The Whole Deal opens in a new tab value guide is packed with tips and ideas to get 2011 off to a healthy and budget-happy start. In addition, check out our online Health Starts Here™ meal planning and cooking tips opens in a new tab and our great collection of budget-friendly recipes opens in a new tab that have been featured in past issues of The Whole Deal.

Ready, set, cook!

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