Keto on a Budget: 10 Easy Ways to Save Money

Are you looking for easy ways to eat Keto on a budget? In this post, you’ll find ten suggestions that don’t take a lot of time that can save big bucks.

A collage of 10 ways to eat Keto on a Budget

10 Easy Ways to Eat Keto on a Budget

I’ve been following a keto diet, which has become a lifestyle, for almost three years. If you’ve done Keto for any time, you know it’s not always cheap.
As a family of 6, I’m always looking for simple ways to save money. Our grocery budget is one of our most significant monthly expenditures. As a busy mom, I don’t have time to cut coupons, shop around at multiple stores each week, or even price match. Finding ways to save without losing my mind or requiring a significant investment of my time is essential. In this post, I’m sharing simple ways to save money that can add substantial savings.

Tip: There are many great resources online. Don’t miss my comprehensive How to Get Started with the Keto Diet ebook, where all the resources to get started are compiled in a simple downloadable format without needing to read multiple blog posts.

Is it Expensive to Eat Keto?

It can be in the beginning if you jump full force and fully stock your pantry with all keto foods. I chose instead to stock my keto pantry along the way by making a meal plan each week and only buying the ingredients I needed to stick to our meal plan. As I did this, I slowly built my keto pantry over time, so I didn’t break the bank.

You may find yourself eating at home, which may initially increase your grocery budget. At the same time, you should find yourself spending much less eating out so that many often find themselves saving money overall.

How Much Does the Keto Plan Cost?

The great thing about following a ketogenic diet is that you can do it entirely for free. Check out my 2 week Keto Meal Plan ebook. It is a fantastic resource.

How do You do Keto Cheap?

When looking for ways to reduce our grocery budget, I’ve found several ways to save money. Even if you follow one or two, your savings can be significant over time.

1. Prepare Simple Cheap Keto Meals, Plan Leftovers, & Pantry Cooking  

  • Keep it Simple – You don’t have to make elaborate meals every night. One way to eat keto on a budget is to keep meals simple so that you don’t have to invest in many ingredients. Meat, veggie, and garden salad make a fantastic easy dinner idea. Another great option is a casserole or one-skillet recipe with meat and vegetables for a complete meal.
  • Leftovers are Smart – Make enough for leftovers. It’s often cheaper to buy ingredients to double a recipe instead of making something new at every meal. You can prepare one meal to enjoy now and another as a freezer meal later. Or, make one meal for dinner and rewarm the next day for lunch.
  • One Day a Week Declare a Smorgasboard – Typically, one day a week for lunch, we get out all the leftovers so everyone can pick and choose their favorites. Instead of throwing and wasting food, we purposely eat what we’ve made that week.
  • Pantry Cooking – Eat what you have instead of going to the grocery store to purchase ingredients for other recipes. There is a good chance we can all pull a meal out of what we have in our pantry, fridge, and freezer. It might not be what we are craving, but it is one way to stretch your budget further and reduce waste.

Cheap Keto Meals: 

Cheap Keto Lunch Ideas

2. Cheap Cuts of Meat, Shop Weekly Sales, and/or Buy Meat in Bulk

  • Buy Meat from a Meat Subscription Service – With the high cost of food and availability issues, a meat subscription service might be a great fit to keep your freezer stocked. ButcherBox is a meat subscription company that distributes high-quality meat you can trust; 100% grass-fed and pasture-raised beef, free-range organic chicken, heritage breed pork, and wild-caught Alaskan salmon directly to your door. They offer various promotions throughout the year, such as ground beef or bacon for life. ButcherBox’s website has all the details.
  • Choose Cheap Cuts of Meat – Some cuts of meat are generally cheaper such as a whole chicken, chicken thighs and drumsticks, flat steaks, ground beef, chuck roast, sirloin steak, and bone-in pork chops.
  • Shop Weekly Sales – Shopping weekly grocery store sales will save you money to eat keto on a budget. Grocery stores generally offer deals each week on different meats. It’s best to purchase what is on sale each week and either plan your menu around that particular offering or buy more and freeze for later. In the long run, your savings can be significant.
  • Buy Meat in Bulk -Buying meat in bulk can be a budget saver if you have a large freezer. You may be able to find someone local who is selling 1/2 to 1/4 of a cow.

3. Save on Fruits & Veggies 

  • Buy Produce in Season – In addition to the grocery store offering weekly sales on meats, you’ll also find the same for produce. Shopping for fruits and veggies on sale and in season will garner the most savings. You can also take advantage of deals by stocking up and then freeze items that can be frozen for later. Here is a guide on how to freeze fruits and veggies.
  • Shop Farmer’s Markets – I shop at Farmer’s Markets, a local Amish farm, and roadside produce stands in the summer months. I’ve found that I can often get excellent deals at the end of the day.
  • Plant a Small Garden – If it is an option, a garden can be a huge money saver, especially for veggies you eat often. We eat a lot of cucumbers and green peppers at our house. We’ve planted a small garden several times, and it helped tremendously.

4. Meal Plan, Pick Five, & Meal Prep

  • Meal Plan – I create a very lazy meal keto plan each week and only buy the items I need. By planning, I buy what we need and then am intentional in cooking the foods we purchased and eating leftovers. You could even go a step further and plan around what is on sale that week by using the grocery store circulars to plan your meals.
  • Five Favorite Meals – Pick five meals that are easy to make and keep the ingredients for these recipes on hand at all times. That way, when you are tempted to go out to eat and spend money, you know you have everything on hand to make an easy meal without much effort.
  • Meal Prep – Doing a little bit of meal prep in advance, like keeping ground beef already browned in the freezer or doubling recipes, will save time in the kitchen. I call this working smarter, not harder, so that you don’t get too of cooking, especially now when we are home for an extended period. This post, 5 easy steps to keto meal prep, outlines easy tips for meal prep.

5. Buy in Bulk at Wholesale Clubs like Costco, Sam’s Club, or BJ’s Warehouse

  • As part of the Keto lifestyle, you’ll most likely use a lot of butter, cheese, heavy whipping cream, cream cheese, salad dressing, etc. By purchasing these items at a wholesale club, you’ll be able to take advantage of bulk pricing. With so many other grocery stores limiting the amounts of foods you can buy, buying bulk at a wholesale club is helpful.

6. Grocery Shop Online

  • Grocery shopping online can be a huge time saver and a way to stay on budget as it reduces impulse buys. Especially now, when so many don’t want to venture out, grocery shopping online is a great option. My store only releases shopping days two days at a time, so it has been a bit more challenging. If you secure a time slot, you can save $10 off your first online order at Walmart here.

7. Check discount stores for almond flour, coconut flour, etc

  • From time to time, my local Big Lots Store will carry an array of gluten-free options that are helpful when following a Keto Lifestyle, such as almond and coconut flour. Since they are closeout items, the prices are significantly lower.

8. You don’t need everything you see in a keto grocery list

  • It’s always helpful to shop from a keto grocery list. However, remember that you don’t need every single keto item at the grocery store at once. Instead, buy low-carb foods as needed and build your keto pantry along the way. Stick to the basics, then buy extras as needed. Here is a link to my printable keto grocery list to keep handy.

 9. Shop ALDI 

  • Shopping at ALDI can help save money to eat keto on a budget. Overall, ALDI’s prices are up to 40% off compared to other grocery stores due to their operating efficiencies. I love that we can get in and out quickly, which means less exposure to others.

10. Amazon Prime  and Subscribe & Save

  •  Amazon Prime is one of my very favorite ways to shop online. With four kids, I prefer things delivered to our front door. It’s super easy to order keto nonperishable items. Since I am an Amazon Prime member, almost everything I buy ships for free with 2-day shipping.
  • Amazon Subscribe & Save is a fabulous way to stock up on items you regularly use that are set on a shipping schedule so that you never run out. You can choose monthly, bimonthly, or another interval. The items you add to your subscribe and save list show up at your doorstep at savings up to 15% off.

Check out all of my Keto recipes in my Keto Recipe Index. Eating keto doesn’t have to be expensive. There are easy ways to save money and eat keto on a budget that won’t take much time or effort.

More Keto 101 Resources:

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24 Comments

  1. One of the scariest things about changing the way you eat is the cost. I’ve gone from eating conventionally to organic to gluten free and finally to ketogenically. Each time, I experienced some level of anxiety around the unfamiliarity of shopping and cooking a new way. I’m not sure that the anxiety will completely go away but articles like yours certainly take some of it away. Thanks for sharing!

    1. I totally agree with Tara. When I listen to talk about your personality Kasey, I feel we are kindred spirits. I am very easily distracted and go from one task to another, making life sometimes very out of focus. When I listen to how you manage that difficulty, I believe I can achieve it too. It’s currently me and sometimes my husband eating Keto. I’ve been only doing it since last summer. I have four kids as well, and while I’ve always cooked fresh good foods for them, they are not off the carbs like pasta, rice and breads. You are incredibly helpful with all the variety of recipes you provide, and I’m so appreciative. I made your pork chop recipe the other day and everyone loved it. Now I’m going to attempt this cheesey broccoli soup. I’m still very accustomed to cooking in my old ways, so switching over has been a slow process. I will not give up though, as I would prefer they all get on board with me. I just need to get skilled at providing them with comparable alternatives to what they already eat. Me, I’ve been okay with eating the same things most days, but I know that won’t last forever. Thank you again for all that you do.❤️

    2. Thank you so much for your kind words, Nancy. I am glad I am not alone in my personality. For years, I saw it as a hindrance. Now, I realize that although there are many tasks that are challenging for me, there are gifts as well. I’m glad your family enjoyed the pork chops. My family eats a lot of my cooking, but I don’t restrict carbs from them. I just don’t want my kids to feel like they are on a diet. I try to instill healthy habits and learning to listen to natural hunger signals. At the same time, naturally, I have changed my grocery shopping to include more fresh foods and less processed so overall everyone eats fewer carbs if that makes sense. I’m so happy to help. Blessings to you for taking the time to comment.

  2. Thank you for sharing, I’ve been thinking about going on etogenic diet for a , but my husband is such a picky eater, lol. I’m if there is one near ou, but we shop at , it’s an employee owned store that has regular and bulk items, because the employees own the store, they determine the prices, and they don’t have a Cooperate office to answer to!!

  3. Been on low fat diets for years ..no wonder I don’t lose weight…everything low fat seems to be high sugar …who knew..I’m going to give it a good try…think I can do the high protein even though I’m not a big meat eater..fingers crossed ….

  4. I recently read that a keto diet can cause hair loss. Since I seem to be experiencing it, I was wondering if any of your other followers are having the same problem.

    1. I have also had hair loss while living the Keto lifestyle. I added more Keto friendly vegetables into my menu plans. I’m very happy to say that my hair has been growing back at warp speed. I also added a specific vitamin for hair and nails (found at Walmart vitamin aisle). Hope this helps

  5. I have to say Kasey you are an inspiration. I started keto in January 2020 and love cooking this way because of you. I print your receipes daily. I have a binder full of them….(my keto receipe book) thanks to you. I meal plan every week using this binder and I always ensure I include one new receipe every week to try. My family loves all the meals and deserts I have made so far. I love my new lifestyle, I love all your receipes and most of all I love that I have you as my personal cooking instuctor. God Bless you and your family.
    Sending much love all the way from Toronto, Canada!

    Anna

    1. Thank you so much, Anna, for your wonderful words and support. It means so much to me!! I am thrilled you and your family enjoy my recipes. Praying God’s blessings over you and your family!

  6. I love your site and love most of these tips, but I’m very disappointed in your intro that you “Do not have the time to coupon, etc” I am also a Mom of four and your comments to” not have time to coupon” are completely contradictory to your meal planning as coupon match ups are so very readily available. Time is money. I’m not saying become a hoarder of 72 bottles of hot sauce, lol, but when meal planning, coupons definitely help. When my kids were young, I did this without Blogs, etc…. Meal planning is the key!

    1. Kim, thank you for your kind words about my site. Please keep in mind, this is my experience. If couponing works for you awesome. However, it’s important to have grace for others who might not feel the same way you do. Having the same number of children doesn’t mean our lives and time are the same.

      What you might not know about me, is that I used to teach coupon workshops all over the southeast. I’ve taught thousands of people how to coupon, and even wrote a book that was published. (You can find it on Amazon It’s called Couponing for the Rest of Us: The Not So Extreme Guide to Saving More). Because of my experience I know how much time couponing takes and in my season of life, it would not be worth it to me as I homeschool my children and run a very demanding business at home. While I understand coupon matchups are readily available (I used to post them every week on my blog), they aren’t feasible for me. Also, after teaching thousands of people how to coupon, I also know the challenges which kept people from couponing consistently, which is why I offered the other tips which take less time.

      Couponing helped our family tremendously for years, especially in a season when my husband had been laid off from his job and we had two spec houses that sat for two years in the last recession. Those two houses plus the home we lived in meant three mortgages every month and no income. Couponing helped to save my family during that season. I’m glad couponing works for you and anyone else that uses them.

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