Expensive Foods to Avoid While on Food Stamps

If you are a food stamps recipient, then you know that the high food cost of certain foods can cause you to go over your weekly or monthly meal budget. You need maximize the amount of healthy foods you provide  your family.

There are certain foods you will want to avoid purchasing with food stamps. By avoiding these food items, you will automatically be reducing the amount of money that you spend on groceries.

Although you can purchase expensive foods while being a recipient of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), also known as food stamps, items such as meats, seafood, and junk foods may eat up most of your budget, which can result in you scrapping together meals at the end of the month. Therefore, when using food stamps to purchase food for you and your family, you should try to avoid buying the food items below to maximize savings.

Steaks

When you are comparing food prices at your local grocery store, you will find that one of the most expensive protein foods is steaks. While you can often purchase ground beef or ground turkey on sale, steaks tend to be expense, even if your grocery store is running a special. Therefore, to increase savings, you should avoid purchasing steaks, unless for a special occasion or when your grocery store is running a promotion or special that offers significant savings.

Seafood

Though you can purchase lobster, shrimp, and crab legs on food stamps, they are additional expensive food items that you may want to avoid buying while on food stamps. Since these foods are seasonal, lobster, shrimp, and crab legs rarely go on sale. When they do, they are often still expensive and can eat up a chunk of your monthly budget.

Related Article: Tips for Using Food Stamps Wisely

However, if you or your family is craving seafood, you can buy these foods frozen, which is usually a lot more affordable than their fresh counterpart.

Soda

When putting together a grocery price list, you should also avoid purchasing soda. Not only do sodas tend to be pricey, but they are also high in sugars. High consumption of soda can also lead to obesity, heart disease, and diabetes. Therefore, next time that you pass the junk food aisle in your grocery store try to steer away from sodas. Instead, turn to water and juices, but be wary of drinking too much juice.

Juices

Juices, like sodas, are another expensive food item that you should avoid while on food stamps. While it is common for the heads of households on food stamps to purchase juices for the children in the family, it is important to monitor the amount of juice that they drink. Children who consume large quantities of juice are at risk of cavities, malnourishment, and obesity. By cutting back on the amount of juice you buy each month, your family will begin to eat healthier on a more affordable budget.

Junk Foods

In the United States, it is typical for the average cost of groceries to go towards purchasing junk food. However, there are many advantages to not allowing junk foods in the home. Not only is junk food expensive, but it is also unhealthy since it can lead to obesity and diabetes if overly consumed. In place of junk food, consider providing your family with snacks that offer nutrition and protein. That way, you are saving more money each month and also providing healthier foods that will provide more energy.

Energy Drinks

Like sodas, energy drinks are pricey drinks that if consumed often, can take up a large portion of your monthly food budget. While food stamps guidelines state that recipients can purchase energy drinks such as Red Bull, energy drinks, like sodas and juices, contain a large amount of sugar. Also, energy drinks tend to have as much caffeine as a cup of your daily morning coffee. Therefore, next time you are at the grocery store, you should avoid adding energy drinks to your cart to maximize your food savings.

Candy

When considering the cost of groceries, you may want to note the amount of money you spend on candy. Candy is a sugary food item that if consumed often and in large quantities can lead to obesity and diabetes. While everyone deserves a candy or chocolate bar now and then, purchasing them every time you step foot inside of your local grocery store can consume a large portion of your monthly food budget. To cut back on the amount of money you spend, try to limit your candy consumption to weekends or special occasions.

Bakery Items

If you are a food stamps recipient, then you know that you can purchase fresh bakery items like cakes, muffins, and cookies. Although these bakery items are made in the store, they are not any healthier or more nutritious than their processed counterparts, and they are often more expensive. Therefore, to save on your grocery tab, you should avoid bakery items except for special occasions, like birthdays.

Desserts

When comparing grocery food prices, it is easy to see that the cost of processed desserts is often expensive. Therefore, processed desserts are another food item to avoid while on food stamps. If you plan to provide your family with healthy foods to eat, you should avoid processed foods like desserts. Not only are they expensive, but they contain a high volume of sugar. Therefore, if you and your family have a sweet tooth, you may want to consider baking desserts. Not only will it be more affordable, but it can also be a fun family activity.

Ice Cream

Finally, when considering the price of grocery items, you may want to avoid buying ice cream with your food stamps. It is common knowledge that unhealthy snack items are more expansive than healthy alternatives. Therefore, if your family is craving ice cream, consider purchasing fresh or frozen fruits and topping them with artificial sweetener, which is zero calories. Not only will you be offering your family a healthy alternative, but one that is also more affordable.

Related Article: What can I buy with food stamps?

It might also interest you: