Food Prep: A Quick Lesson in Financial Wellness

As an undergrad (and perhaps almost all through grad school…) I lived off of Lean Cuisines. One of my roommates dubbed me the Lean Cuisine Queen. Ok, multiple roommates have dubbed me that. It wasn’t until I really got into reading labels (beyond calorie content) that I learned that Lean Cuisines (or any other TV dinner) are not good for you and not worth the money (even if they are on a 5 for $10 special!).

Enter my last semester of grad school. To the horror of my roommates one day, I brought home chicken. Raw chicken. To cook. I cooked it, didn’t set the house on fire and enjoyed it. I have always loved (er…or been addicted) to Food Network and watching cooking shows but I never ever cooked for myself beyond what I could make in a microwave (and I can make some food in a microwave!).

Since moving to Kansas, I have learned the value of a dollar and what all you can get. I could spend $10 on Lean Cuisines that would last me 5 meals and be loaded with salt and ingredients that I will never be able to pronounce. Or I can take that $10 and buy some fresh lettuce, find a good deal on chicken (and stock pile it in my freezer) and throw some other veggies in the mix and get meals to last me a bit longer or at the very least be healthier for me.

My food prep looks like this. Every Saturday night I go grocery shopping. That’s right. Saturday night. Why? Because the grocery stores aren’t as packed so if I want to take the time to compare produce or read labels, I don’t feel like someone is actually breathing down my neck. I like grocery shopping to be relaxing. I don’t see the need to stress myself out over getting food. Every Sunday night, I throw on some bad TV and start cooking. I bake my chicken breasts or cook up ground turkey breast with whatever seasoning I am feeling that night while I start cleaning my veggies and getting them cut up. By doing all of my meal prep at the beginning of the week, it makes it so much easier for me to stick with grabbing my salad in the morning and not spending $10 on buying lunch. (Aha! That’s where I was going with this!) By making it easier to grab my salad for lunch rather than going upstairs to buy lunch I’m not only feeding myself with good nutrition, but I’m saving myself a ton of money.


I finished my 50 days of running challenge yesterday. I clocked 150 miles!

I saw a lady yell at someone for not yielding to a pedestrian in a sidewalk. It was AWESOME!

2 thoughts on “Food Prep: A Quick Lesson in Financial Wellness

  1. I also love grocery shopping when it’s not busy! It is much easier to read the labels.

    This week I am making spaghetti. I bought a plain sauce (not quit up to making my own yet) and got fresh mushrooms, peppers, and zucchini to put in the sauce. I always try to add fresh veggies to all my recipes.

    • One of my favorite things about making my own food is getting to season and flavor it to make it my own! I love this idea of buying plain spaghetti sauce but then adding all these fresh veggies to amp up the nutrition and to make it your own! Reminds me of a show on Food Network where Sandra uses some store bought ingredients but then adds things to make it her own! Thanks for the idea and input! Love this!

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