The median American eats an median of 4.2 commercially all set meals every week. In other words, as a nation, us eat out between four and also five times a week, on average. This number equates to 18.2 meals in an typical month eaten outside the home.

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When I first heard that statistic, my initial reaction is the the number was high. Ns eat out perhaps once a week in ~ this point in mine life. However, when I reflected back on earlier stages in mine life, the number seemed fully reasonable.

Take a young skilled who eats the end for lunch 3 times a week and also follows that v a couple of dates on the weekend. Take an elderly couple who find it much much easier to stimulate food that’s delivered than to work in the kitchen to make it themselves. Even numerous families choose ours will order some pizza ~ a long day of the end activity.

What type of money space we talking around here? The average American spends $232 per month eat meals prepared outside the home. Given that there’s 18.2 meals eaten outside the home in an median month by the median American, the mean meal exterior the home prices a person $12.75.

Again, that’s reasonable. You might eat an cheap lunch or 2 that’s below that number, then invest much more than that on a nicer dinner eaten outside the home.

However, when you can be racking up some an excellent rewards ~ above your credit card v restaurant bonuses, when you start comparing that to the price of preparing foodstuffs at home, it i do not care pretty clear the there’s a the majority of money involved here.


A pair summers ago, i did a food collection where I ready a wide selection of meals because that my family members at under $10 every meal. Those meals fed 4 (at the time) that us rather well and also often left food for the complying with day’s lunch for some of us. Thus, the cost for this meals to be well under $2 per human being per meal.

Let’s say, though, that not all meals at home are going come be that inexpensive and assume you’re averaging $4 per enjoy the meal per person prepared in the home.

If you were to just prepare all meals in ~ home, you’d relocate 4.2 meals from restaurants to your home. At an average price of $12.75 per meal, you’d save yourself $8.75 for each that those meals. In various other words, the typical American would conserve $36.75 per person per week by moving every one of their meals indigenous restaurants to home-prepared meals.

Let’s look in ~ a more realistic picture. Take a household of 2 adults and two teenagers, for example, and also let’s say the they simply chose to eat one less meal out per week. On average, that household would conserve $35 from simply that one enjoy the meal change.

For me, I prefer it much better when eating out is a pleasure and not a routine. due to the fact that I eat out lot less regularly than I once did, it’s miscellaneous of a treat to eat in ~ a restaurant, vice versa, it to be once totally the norm.

Try cutting earlier a little bit on eat out. Brown bag the to work-related an extra time or 2 a week, or prepare a nice meal at residence with your family members instead the heading out on the town. Her wallet will thank you.

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This short article is part of a yearlong collection called “365 means to Live Cheap (Revisited),” in i m sorry I’m revisiting the entries native my publication “365 means to Live Cheap,” which is obtainable at Amazon and also at bookstores everywhere. Images courtesy of Brittany Lynne Photography, the proprietor of i m sorry is mine “photography intern” because that this project.