Have you ever been in the grocery store, thinking about your endless task list and decided to buy the ‘convenience food’ option like Hamburger Helper because you thought it was going to save you time? Time is money, so we think the added cost is justified.
Food companies don’t want us to know it, but most of the convenience they’re selling us is an illusion. When I tried to make a from-scratch version of Hamburger Helper, I expected it would be faster, and it was: by one minute. In fact, a study of dual-income families’ cooking habits found that those who use convenience foods don’t save any time on meal prep. But what really shocked me was the price comparison. Making Hamburger Helper from scratch saved me 69 percent off the cost of the box, and 42 percent on the overall price of the meal.
So, the next time you’re deciding whether you’re going to go for the meal in a box or make one from scratch, remember your time and money is valuable, better to make it from scratch.