How to Avoid Eating Fast Food: Things That Break the Budget and How to Avoid Them

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Last week I talked about making economical food choices if you’re eating fast food because it’s fast and not because you want the food. Perhaps it would have been logical to first write about how to avoid fast food altogether.  Regardless, here are some tips:

  • Have a weekly menu plan for dinner that covers every meal, whether with a new meal or left overs.
  • Have a backup plan like spaghetti or breakfast for dinner (and always have those foods on hand) for when you don’t have what you need to cook a meal on your plan or you just plain run out of time.
  • Get in the habit of cooking twice as much as your family will eat in one sitting.  Either save the rest to eat another night that week or freeze it immediately for an easy meal in a few weeks. Here are some meals that freeze well.
  • Save all leftovers.  Routinely clean out your fridge  for meals during the week (we usually only cook 5 meals so we eat leftovers the other 2 nights) or put those leftovers into personal serving sizes in a freezable and reheatable container sort of like a tv dinner. You can also save all your veggies in the freezer in a large ziplock.  When the bag is full cook vegetable soup.
  • Try some simple freezer cooking. Almost all of our meat is cooked in large batches when I buy it so that I can get a meal on the table in very little time, plus we only deal with raw meat once.
  • Organize a casserole swap to give you some variety as well as preparation free nights.  Just remember to move the dishes to your fridge the night before you want to cook them.

It’s not the end of the world if you need to eat fast food, but these tips will help you avoid it.


  1. Thanks for sharing those great sounding freezer recipes! Now that it’s just hubby and me at home, I am having to relearn how to cook! When I had three teenage boys and their friends to cook for, I made HUGE batches of food that disappeared immediately. Now “normal” sized recipes are usually too much, and we don’t want to eat the same dish for days at a time. Freezing is the answer, and I’m on the lookout for recipes.

  2. Glad you found it helpful Beth!

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