Pasta inexpensive option to feed family - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Pasta inexpensive option to feed family

by Danielle Wagner

WATERLOO (KWWL) Pasta is back on the menu for many families. the National Pasta Association said after years of losing sales due to the nation's fixation with low-carb dieting, sales are up as we search for inexpensive ways to feed our families. Nielsen research figures pasta sales are up 22 to 42 percent.

The NPA said a one pound box of pasta is enough for two meals for a family of four and costs around $1.20. When you include sauce, the total cost adds up to about 76 cents per serving.

Besides being cheap, pasta can also be part of a healthy diet. Hy-Vee Dietitian Stephanie Beenken said most people need five to six servings of grains per day.

"It's definitely a healthy option for a family, but we should point out an even healthier option is whole wheat pasta," said Beenken.

Beenken said most people shouldn't cut out pasta because of a trendy diet.

"Carbs are not bad. You need 130 grams of carbs per day to have your brain function, and even more for activities like playing and walking," said Beenken.

Another inexpensive choice when it comes to pasta is Ramen noodles. You can get three for a dollar, but you probably don't want to eat those everyday. Ramen noodles are higher in fat and sodium than other pastas.

With more people looking for deals, Beenken said Hy-Vee has seen a slight increase in pasta sales, but there's a significant jump in private label products.

"They have just the same amount of quality and nutritional value as name brands but certainly cheaper," she said.

The National Pasta Association claims during the last six years, the cost of pasta has gone up seven cents. Where the cost of other producst like eggs and milk has gone up at least 30 percent in just one year.

If you're looking for ways to save money at the grocery store, clip ads, buy off-brand products and make a list and stick to it.

For a list of pasta recipes and budget friendly menus, click on links in the blue box on our website homepage.

Reporter: Danielle Wagner

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