HomeSnap7 Ways to Get More From Your SNAP Benefits

7 Ways to Get More From Your SNAP Benefits

Due to the highest inflation rate in 40 years, your dollars lose more of their value every day. Every time you go to the grocery store, you have to spend more to get less. For the tens of millions of Americans who use EBT cards to pay at the grocery store, the question has been the same for months: how can I make my SNAP benefits go further?

Even in the best of times, if you only have snapped, you have to be disciplined, make sacrifices, and make many hard decisions. Today, though, when prices are high, and money is tight, it’s harder than ever to get everything you need at the grocery store with just your EBT card.

1. Don’t buy packs of small, individually wrapped items. Instead, buy in bulk.

Almost always, buying in bulk is cheaper per serving, and even if you only save a little, it adds up for things you use often. If, for example, you pay 10 cents less for something you eat every day, you’ll save $36.50 over a year.

But it only makes sense if you have room to store extra and know you’ll eat it before it goes bad. Keep in mind that buying in bulk costs more upfront, and US News and World Report says that people are more likely to waste things when they have a lot of them.

If you can’t buy in bulk, try to avoid packages of individually wrapped items, which almost always cost more per unit.

2. Eat before going shopping.

More than a decade ago, Psychology Today wrote about the research presented at the 2011 conference of the Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior. The research showed that when the hunger hormone ghrelin went up, test subjects didn’t care about prices when they went shopping for food.

“Don’t go shopping when you’re hungry” was already “age-old advice” back then. In 2018, seven years later, research from the National Institutes of Health confirmed that even the savviest shoppers make bad choices at the grocery store when they are hungry, based on temporary cravings rather than nutritional value or price.

In 2022, that same old piece of advice is more important than ever.

7 Ways to Get More From Your SNAP Benefits (3)

3. Use a meal plan to guide your shopping.

Whether you use an EBT card or not, planning your meals before you go shopping will save you time, take the guesswork out of shopping and cooking, cut down on food waste, and save you money. There are many ways to do this, but the basic idea is to plan recipes for X number of meals for X number of days, usually a week, and then shop for the ingredients in those recipes intelligently.

You could use one of the following free apps to plan meals and shop for groceries:

  • Prepare
  • Paprika
  • Mealime

A recent study in the Journal of Marketing Research found that the products in grocery stores that are most likely to catch people’s attention are 14.7 inches below eye level or higher. Product placement experts have known for a long time that the most effective way to sell more expensive, branded items is to put them in the line of sight of the average customer, preferably on the right side.

“Eye level is buying level” is an old saying about supermarkets.

You can get more out of your SNAP benefits if you look 14.7 inches below any item that catches your eye. You’ll probably find a similar thing with a lower price tag.

5. Change the way you choose a protein, and learn to love legumes.

According to the Harvard School of Public Health, adults need about 7 grams of protein per day for every 20 pounds of body weight. The price per gram of protein depends on where it comes from.

Beans and other legumes, like lentils, chickpeas, soybeans, and peanuts, are almost always the cheapest source of high-quality protein at the store. In addition, they are high in fiber, filling, versatile, and can be bought in large quantities, either dry or in cans, and kept for months or even years.

Read More:- Cities With the Highest Number of Food Stamp People Receiving

The US Forest Service says that only the grass family, which includes corn and all cereal grains, is more critical than legumes. If you don’t like legumes, keep trying. There are 16,000 known species, so maybe you haven’t met the right one yet.

6. How much does each gram of animal-based protein cost?

Meat, fish, pig, and poultry are on the other end of the range. They are the most expensive ways to get protein, but they don’t all give the same value in terms of cost per gram. For example, most fish is not as dense as most meat, so it has less protein by weight.

VeryWellFit gives you this formula to figure out how much protein is in each pound of food you buy:

  • One gram of protein usually costs a little less than a penny, or 0.9 cents, for every dollar per pound.
  • Divide the price per pound by the number of grams of protein to get the cost per gram.

The formula is based on the idea that everything can be eaten. When comparing the cost per gram of, say, a whole chicken to chicken cutlets or a filet to a cut of meat with the bone in, you’ll need to make adjustments.

7. Grow Your Own

Not many people know about SNAP is that recipients can use their EBT cards to buy seeds to grow their food. You can also use SNAP to purchase plants that you can eat, like oregano and mint, and plants that make food, like tomato and cucumber plants.

Read More:-

Like a farmer’s market, you can buy plants and seeds with your EBT card at any SNAP-approved store. The USDA says that for every dollar you spend on fertilizer and seeds, you can grow $25 worth of food. It’s one of the best ways to save money that the program gives you.

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