6 ways to save money on food this winter

Transform last night’s meatloaf into sandwiches. Picture: Pexels/Gonzalo Acuna

Transform last night’s meatloaf into sandwiches. Picture: Pexels/Gonzalo Acuna

Published May 7, 2024


From higher heating costs to the temptation of comfort food take-out meals, managing your finances when the weather is cooler can be challenging.

But with a bit of planning and smart decision-making, you can navigate winter without burning a hole in your pocket.

Here are a few ideas to make your rands go a bit further as temperatures decrease.

Love your leftovers

Transform last night’s meatloaf into sandwiches.

This can also be done by using roasted chicken in a risotto, adding leftover steak or shrimp to tacos or saving portions of casserole in the freezer to enjoy later.

Cook meals at home

This might seem like an obvious tip, but this is by far the best way to make your rands work for you, especially during winter.

By cooking at home, you can buy vegetables in bulk when they are on special and cook up big batches of stew or chilli.

Just pop the extra portions in the freezer for easy lunches.

Make hot drinks at home instead of buying them. Picture: Pexels

Make hot drinks at home instead of buying them

The lines at cafes during the winter are much longer in comparison to the summer.

This means that you are not only going to part with your money, but you will also be left in the cold, literally, as you wait in the queue for your drink.

Save yourself from this experience by purchasing a reusable coffee cup and brewing your drinks at home. The warm cup will also heat your hands warm as you make your way to work, school or anywhere else you are heading to.

Multi-task with your oven

If there is a problem with cooking meals over a long period of time, it is that it uses lots of electricity. Try and multi-task whilst your dinner is in the oven so you get the most out of the heat.

An example would be to whip up a batch of banana muffins for next week’s lunch boxes, oven roast some tomatoes to turn into pasta sauce, or brown some beef bones and make your own stock.

Make substitutions. Picture: Pexels/Mali

Make substitutions

Do not rush out to buy something you would not otherwise use (or do not have on hand) just because a recipe calls for it. You will often find a good alternative in your fridge or pantry.

Make freezer meals with leftovers

Winter meals are fantastic to freeze. If you have leftovers from dinner, pop the unserved portions into freezer bags and save them instead of throwing them away.

At the end of the week, you will be pleasantly surprised to see you have another night’s dinner ready to reheat and eat.