fast food vs home cooked meals 1

Fast Food Vs Home Cooked Meals [all You Need to Know]

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With a global net worth of $223 billion, the fast-food industry is among the strongest ones across the Globe. About 58% of Americans choose to eating out of their house at least once per week. Approximately 80% of US citizens admit to eating out at least once every month.

These stats reveal that visiting restaurants is an integral part of the American lifestyle. Should it be that way, though? A quick comparison of fast food vs home cooked meals shows that the latter is healthier and cheaper. Scroll down and learn what makes cooking at home your smartest choice in 2021.

Cheaper Food

People have all kinds of ideas and misconceptions that fast food is cheap. Restaurants use advanced marketing strategies to make consumers believe they’re getting top deals. Often, for $20, you can get an entire meal with condiments and a drink.

This makes eating out sounds like a smart choice for your budget when you compare fast food vs homemade food. The truth is different, however. Families of four can save, on average, about $416 by eating at home at least once per week. Considering there are plenty of family meals under $20, dining out doesn’t make sense for those trying to save money.

fast food vs home cooked meals cheaper

Even if you cook your own food in large quantities and have leftovers, home-cooking is cheaper. Leftovers are quickly turned into new dishes. Just check out these excellent meals you can cook with pumpkin after Halloween ends, for example! So, you won’t waste anything, and you will save cash at the same time. Meaning, the cost of fast food vs home cooked meals is much higher when all the factors are considered.

Try making your own jam or spread and enjoy it for weeks. You can even use these in healthy and cheap Easter basket ideas. Home-cooking saves you cash on multiple fronts!

Home Cooking Vs. Fast Food – Healthy And Unhealthy

Stats reveal that more and more Americans prefer cooking at home in comparison to eating at restaurant. For half of them, the main reason for this is practicing a healthier diet. You don’t need a scientific essay to understand why junk meals are unhealthy. Still, here’s what makes home-prepared nourishment better for your health.

Pros Of Homemade Meals

  • Healthy ingredients – To prepare your own food, you do the shopping yourself. Meaning, you can pick fresh produce, avoid expired food, and get organic products.
  • You have control over what you eat – Include whatever products you want, add seasoning to taste, use less or no oil. In your kitchen, you’re in control of your meal and can prepare it however you prefer it.
  • No overeating – It’s hard to overeat because you use measurements and adequate servings. Restaurant meals are often “cheaper” if you get larger items, which leads to overeating.
  • More fruits and veggies – Studies about fast food vs. home cooked food show that people eat more fruits and vegetables with home-cooking. When people prepare their meals, they’re more conscious and responsible than when dining out.

Cons Of Fast Food

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  • Low produce quality – Not all restaurants pick their products carefully. Instead, they go for the cheapest options, even if that means expired or almost-expired items.
  • Too much sodium – One restaurant meal, on average, contains two-thirds of your daily allowance of sodium. Having a salt-rich diet can cause numerous health issues, including high blood pressure and kidney disease.
  • Causes obesity – While comparing home cooking vs. fast food, experts discovered the latter causes obesity. The issue is especially visible among kids as they eat twice the calories when dining out.
  • Sensitivities and allergies – Restaurant meals fuel stomach sensitivities and allergies in people who eat it too often.
  • Addictive – It has been proven that fast food is addictive due to its high salt and fat content.
  • Even “healthy” options aren’t healthy – Don’t trust the marketing of going healthy and sugar-free by eating salads with dressing and drinking diet soda. Neither of these is right for your body.

Other Significant Benefits Of Home-Cooking

There are many benefits to eating at home vs eating out. Even besides the cost of eating out vs restaurant cooking being lower and homemade meals being healthier.

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Home-cooking is more time-efficient, for starters. When you eat at your house, you don’t waste any time being stuck in traffic or waiting to be served.

Also, homemade meals help you connect with your family. That’s right! Studies show that eating dinner with your partner, kids, and parents leads to stronger relationships and reduces stress.

Statistics On Eating Out Vs Eating At Home

Let’s look at some surprising statistics on eating out vs eating at home. Discover how huge of an industry the fast food one is. Learn why home-cooking should be your first choice and why it’s on the rise in the USA.

  • American adults spend about $1,200 on fast food per year. (source)
  • US families annually spend approximately $3,000 dining out. (source)
  • About 80% of US citizens visit fast-food restaurants monthly. (source)
  • 23% of US adults dine out at least three times a week. (source)
  • 79% of US teens prefer homemade meals when choosing between home cooked meals vs fast food. (source)
  • The average serving price of a home-cooked meal is $4.31. (source)
  • The average serving price in restaurants is $20.37. Living on $10 a day is impossible with dining out. (source)
  • Children eat twice the calories when eating out. (source)
  • Home-cooking lowers your chances of having overweight BMI by 28%. (source)
  • 72% of Americans cook their meals to save money, while 52% to eat healthier. (source)


This article clears all misconceptions about fast food vs home cooking. Experts agree that families, especially large ones, can quickly save lots of cash by avoiding restaurants. Plus, you get full control over the ingredients you use in your freshly cooked specialties.

With smart financial planning and price comparison, you get the best meals for the lowest price. You can use the leftovers too!

It’s acceptable to treat yourself at a restaurant occasionally. Don’t make it a habit, though and always ask yourself first – what should i eat at home before considering going out for a meal. After all, the cost of eating out vs cooking at home statistics go beyond money. It also affects your health, your mood, and family relations.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Why are home cooked meals better than fast food?

Meals you prepare at your house tend to have fewer calories, fat contents, and sodium. This makes them healthier for you and your family. Home-cooking also gives you’re the freedom to pick where you get your products. With smart planning, cooking your own meals can be cheaper too.

Is it healthier to eat home cooked meals?

Yes, eating meals you cooked yourself is much healthier. Even when compared to “healthy” junk food options, homemade dishes win. Restaurant meals contain lots of sodium, fats, and calories in general. You also don’t have all the information regarding what ingredients are used and where restaurants get them. These junk food drawbacks make home-cooking your best choice.

Is home cooked food cheaper?

Yes, despite a wide misconception that eating out is more affordable. The average price per meal at restaurants moves around $20, while home-cooked dishes cost about $4.50 per serving. Even meal kits are cheaper than dining out. Home-cooking is exceptionally economical for large families. Plus, you can always turn any leftovers into your next meal.

What is home cooked food?

Homemade meals are those you prepare in your kitchen by yourself. You buy and process all the necessary products for a homemade dish. With home-cooked meals, the person cooking has control over the quality and type of products used. In contrast, fast food is prepared at restaurants, and you have no control over the ingredients used in it.


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    14 thoughts on “Fast Food Vs Home Cooked Meals [all You Need to Know]

    1. Jack says:

      Home-cooked food is really tasty but fast food can save time…There are a lot of doubts.

      1. Emily says:

        Sure. Only you can make the right decision. Good luck!

    2. LeslEY says:

      Junk food is my love..sorry but I can’t live without KFC, burgers, hot dogs, etc.

      1. Emily says:

        That’s your life, so don’t worry and be happy! 🙂

    3. Barbara Herd says:

      My family LOVES home cooked meals BUT 2-3 times per year we’re traveling and the cheapest variant (while traveling) is fast food.

      1. Emily says:

        That’s great. Thank you, Barbara!

    4. Mona Mo says:

      Thanks for a detailed comparison, I wanna live a happy and healthy life so my choice is obvious.

      1. Emily says:

        Good luck, Mona!

    5. Ygritte P. says:

      You don’t need to read reviews on fast food versus home cooked meals to know that everything made at home is better. Come on. God knows what they’re putting in restaurants. Stop being lazy, it’s not about the money only!

      1. Emily says:

        Thank you, Ygritte!

    6. Kyle Hansen says:

      Sometimes I think fast food restaurant put something addictive in the food. Like, who can pass by KFC and not get anything, you feel me?

      1. Emily says:

        Oh yeah, that can be true 🙂

    7. N. Underwood says:

      I had some health issues recently and the first thing the doctor said was no smoking and no junk food.

      1. Emily says:

        Agree with your doctor. Be healthy!

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