Another Look at Eating Out vs Eating In

A recent article posted on The New York Budget last week really highlights how important it is to avoid eating out for both financial and health reasons. I’m guessing that finding out that eating in is cheaper won’t surprise anyone, but the scale of the cost difference might.

The author runs through two fictional monthly scenarios to demonstrate the costs of eating out vs cooking at home, and to me at least the scenarios pretty accurately depict your average urban lifestyle. “Restaurant Rick’s” monthly total comes out to $1,091, while “Home-cookin’ Holly” weighs in at $377.

And those are raw financial benefits only, not accounting for the health benefits. Not to mention that in today’s fast paced lifestyle, being a good chef is the first step in becoming the modern renaissance man. There are literally thousands of recipes online dedicated to keeping a budget, and cooking cheap has never been easier.

Feel free to look over the article yourself and see what you think here.


2 thoughts on “Another Look at Eating Out vs Eating In

  1. It’s scary to think about how many people overlook this. Perhaps it’s an old habit, but the math for eating out a lot has never worked for me no matter how much money I make and how high my net worth. Last week my wife and I were invited out for a steak dinner. We declined but asked the other couple to come over for a steak dinner. I had quickly calculated that going dutch would cost us at least $80 as a couple. I fired up the BBQ, got some quality steaks, 4 potatoes a loaf of bread some butter and a bottle of red wine and champagne to make it extra special. The total for all of that was $55. I saved $25 and fed 4 people instead of 2. $25 isn’t much until I think about the fact that I like spending time with friends and do so about twice a week. the savings of $25 becomes $2,600 a year. It’s not a lottery ticket, but no matter how much money I make or have, I’d rather have an extra $2,600 than not have it.

    • It’s a nickel-and-dime thing. It never really seems like $10 or even $5 meals are going to add up until you really sit back and look at a monthly budget.

      Something the article doesn’t mention is that getting into cooking is a pretty big hurdle for a lot of people. Misinformation is rampant in the food industry and trying to figure out what to buy and cook is overwhelming at first.

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