Paleo on a Budget

Tips for ensuring affordable Paleo living 

Recap: Paleo living includes eating foods such as (most) vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, certain fats, meats, and fish. Adopting the diet also means getting rid of grains, beans, dairy products, and processed foods from the meal table. 

Even though the benefits of Paleo are clear, the concern for most people is that adopting such a diet is expensive. The good news is that there are ways of following a Paleo lifestyle on a budget. Here are a few tips to get you thinking:

Buy in bulk

It’s an obvious one but buying in bulk for certain non-perishable products (or get using that freezer, I’ve bought an extra one this year!) will save you money in the long term.

Don’t buy a small 500ml bottle of Olive Oil, get a 5kg keg and decant it down.
Don’t buy a leg of lamb, buy half a lamb and get it butchered then freeze what you’re not using straight away.
Buy fruits when they are in season (and therefore cheaper) in bulk and freeze what you don’t need. These make great ingredients for e.g. green smoothies and stews.
Buy your low toxin washing powder/washing-up liquid in 5kg kegs and store in the garage.

Buy direct from farmers

Buying meat and other Paleo produce directly from farmers and other producers normally equates to much better, fresher meat and buying direct means it should hurt your pocket less. 

The reason for the lower price is that first of all there are no intermediaries, meaning that the price of the products remains relatively low. 

You’ll also start eating more seasonably without realising which also brings cost savings. OIh and you get to feel good that you’re supporting a local business rather than a multinational corporate monster.

You can also buy exactly what you need rather than the pre-packaged plastic wrapped meat and products the supermarkets force you to buy.

Buy products that are in season

Different farm products, especially game, veggies and fruits, become available at different times of the year. During such periods, the prices of the farm products remain impressively low, resulting from the overwhelming supply. 

And remember, buy in bulk and freeze what you don’t need for future use.

Grow and pick your produce

A back-to-basics approach to ensuring a truly Paleo lifestyle is by growing the produce. This isn’t for everyone (including myself, not a green-fingered bone in my body) but it’s the best way to save a lot of money and eat seasonably.

Substitute expensive Paleo products for alternatives

Even though following a Paleo lifestyle can be costly, there are many more cost effective alternatives. For instance instead of buying steak or other costly protein sources, one could substitute with eggs, pork or chicken. 

Similarly instead of eating nuts to get fats, a person could go for the avocado, which offers cheaper and naturally nutritious fats. 

Also instead of buying pre-cut produce such as veggies a healthy conscience person on a budget could chop their veggies instead. 

As for meat, broaden your knowledge of cuts of meat – ignore the fillet steak and try skirt steak for example – get to know your butcher well and you’ll save a lot.

Don’t waste food

Many people are wasteful when it comes to food. For instance, they discard a lot of food parts into the trash can during preparation. Did you know the average household in Britain throws away in excess of £700 per year? Ouch!

A recent ongoing campaign by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Waste not want not, has done wonders in highlighting this issue, both at a consumer and supermarket level. Check out lots of money-saving tips at

Preserve and freeze for future usage

Even if the food stuff isn’t freezeable in its usual state, you can still get freezing and saving. For instance, you could preserve tomatoes by making a sauce and then freeze it for future usage. Veggies and fruits could be fermented and turned into sauerkraut. 

Reduce eating out and volume of take-away meals

Due to our busy lifestyles, many people struggle to find time to prepare meals. As a result, many prefer to eat out or order some take-aways. It’s become more of a norm than a treat these days and it’s worth addressing.

Anyone adapting to the Paleo lifestyle will find the eating-out habit very costly (and also harder, most restaurants still don’t ‘get’ Paleo or pander to it – yet!). So, the ideal solution is to stop eating out and instead prepare the food themselves. 

Alternatively you could commit to cut by half the number of times that you eat out and add it to eating home-made Paleo recipes. 

Hopefully the tips above have got you thinking. There is always a way to manage a food budget within a Paleo lifestyle, it tends to depend on how much work and organisation you’re willing to put into it!

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