I had a discussion recently about how much I eat out. I don't eat out for every meal, but I do enjoy going out for lunch. It gives me an opportunity to catch up with listeners in the community, and it also gives me a chance to support the businesses that use our stations to advertise.

As many discussions do, it started the thought process about how much we, as a nation, eat out. Let's just say, the United States eats out a lot!

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How Much Is North Dakota Spending for Takeout?

Remember during the pandemic when it looked like some of our favorite local restaurants could end up having to close, and as a community, we rallied around them by ordering takeout?

The Cookie Rookie website drilled down on every state in the nation to see just how much we enjoy takeout.

Here's how the states in our region shook out.

  • 9th: Montana at $4775.00 annually (top 10 for spending the most)
  • 6th: North Dakota at $3676.00 annually (top 10 for spending the least)
  • 5th: Minnesota at $3657.00 annually (top 10 for spending the least)
  • 4th: South Dakota at $3592.00 annually (top 10 for spending the least)

This Cookie Rookie website also had some suggestions to make things a bit better when it comes to eating a better meal at home. While takeout is fine, cooking at home saves money and improves health. Improve your dinnertime habits with these tips:

1. Prioritize meal planning:
Plan your weekly dinners. Spend a couple hours on Sunday afternoon planning a weekly menu. This will prevent last-minute scrambling or takeout by ensuring you have all the ingredients.

Online meal planning may make cooking fun again by discovering new meals! Casserole, one-pot, and more recipes are available at The Cookie Rookie.

2. Schedule dinner regularly:
Setting a daily supper hour might help build a pattern and simplify meal planning. While we know life gets in the way, a regular dinner hour allows family members to rearrange their schedules and attend.

3. Make it distraction-free:
Remember to turn off TVs, put away phones and iPads, and prevent distractions during mealtime. You can focus on the food and enjoy family time or mindful eating.

These behaviors can enhance your diet and health and make dinnertime more fun for you and your family by reducing cooking stress. It might also help to take off a few pounds too!

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