My family has always had to be very careful with money, but even more so since I had to go gluten free. Here are some tips for those of you who also have to watch the pennies!
- Opt for naturally gluten free meals as often as possible! Rice, potatoes, vegetables, dairy products etc. are all naturally gluten free and cheap compared to pre-made gluten free products.
- Cook and bake from scratch. Gluten free bread, crackers and cakes can be really expensive but anything you can make from scratch for yourself will work out a lot cheaper than paying £3 in store.
- Your freezer is your new best friend! Cooking in batches is often a lot cheaper than cooking every night and will encourage you to use and freeze food that is going out of date. If you have some potatoes that need using why not make a veggie shepherd’s pie and freeze it in portions? You can also blitz your stale/broken gluten free loaves and freeze the breadcrumbs to use at a later date.
- Grow your own fruit and vegetables. I have a slight bias on this one – my mother is a gardener by profession and so we’ve always had a small vegetable patch. It may take a little more work and planning than buying vegetables at the supermarket but it will save you a lot of money in the long run.
- Look out for deals. Often, newly introduced gluten free products will have a marked down price or sometimes existing products have special offers on them. It is very prudent to take advantage of this – buy products on special offer that you know you will use and already like and freeze them for later use. This is especially good for bread products. Always check that the product is not labelled “do not freeze” before doing this.
- Avoid buying lunch out. There are lots of gluten free lunch options in high street shops now, and whilst that’s fantastic for awareness and availability it can be tough for your bank balance. A pre-prepared sandwich or meal deal from Boots may look appealing at the time but those few pounds a day add up very quickly. Try to pack a lunch box and have snacks in your bag/pockets when out of the house for more than a few hours.
- Look out for coupons or giveaways. Lots of gluten free companies put money off coupons in gluten free magazines (sign up to Coeliac UK for a small annual fee and you will receive lots of benefits including coupons) and they do giveaways on their social media platforms.
- Learn to love supermarket own brand Free From products. Some of them are revolting, I know, but buying big brands like Genius and Schar every week soon adds up. Where possible try to stick to supermarket own brand Free From bread, pizza and snacks. Even if you only save 10p on each item, it will soon add up.
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Youtube: The Gluten Free Veggie – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC-b7T1VFTZqYq15aPvdlNwA
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