Eating at Home vs Eating Outside: Know the Pros and Cons

You all know that home cooking scores over eating out. But what stops most of us from cooking our own meals regularly? It's just so much easier to pick up ready-made food from outside, plus it also tastes better right? Well, let’s look at both sides of the coin.

With more of us turning towards healthy living, we try to focus more on home-cooked food as it is considered healthier. At the same time, we all look forward to that occasional restaurant outing. Eating out, while typically considered less healthy than eating in, doesn’t have to be truly unhealthy. Read on to understand the pros and cons of eating at home and outside.


Does Home Cooking Beat Restaurant Food?

Cooking your own food has forever been known to be healthier than eating out. You know where everything on your plate is coming from, how fresh it is, how much oil or spice it contains, and thereby how healthy it is. Cooking at home not only benefits your health but also reduces stress and anxiety. It can be fun and also gives you ample time to bond with your family. 

You can customise dishes as per your palate preference and make healthier versions of family favourites like pizzas and burgers. Other than the health aspect, cooking your meals at home is also undeniably light on your pocket. 


But is eating at home the only good option for you?? Is eating out a complete “No-No” ?? Here, let’s take a deeper look at the pros and cons of eating at home and outside.

While trying to decide whether you want to eat out or stay in and cook, firstly, consider the potential advantages and disadvantages of each aspect.

Eating In


  • One major advantage of cooking at home is the ability to control the quality and quantity of ingredients. It helps you make healthier choices. 
  • Eating in can often lead to better portion control. You can serve only as much as you need and fill your plate with the right amount of healthy ingredients. Leftovers can be safely stored and consumed later. 
  • Eating at home will also help you stay faithful to your diet plans if you are on a weight loss journey and it will be easy to ward off temptations.


  • Hunting for the right ingredients can take extensive time and effort. It can get stressful at times when you have multiple chores for the day.
  • Good things take time to build, and in the same vein, it takes time to master the art of cooking. You will need to be patient until you can make your dishes the way they should actually taste.
  • Unless you are aware of the correct portions, there are chances of wastage. When you get excess ingredients, they can get wasted if not used before they expire.

Eating Out


  • Eating at restaurants gives you access to a variety of foods that you might not encounter otherwise. You get to taste different cuisines and ingredients as per your interest. 
  • It saves you time and effort in between your busy schedule. You can utilise that time for other important tasks for the day.
  • Eating out also gives you a chance to socialise with others and spend some quality time with friends or family.


  • Eating at restaurants can add on your calories as it is impossible to analyse the nutritional data of all the ingredients in your dish.
  • Outside food is often high in salt and trans fats, increasing the risk of developing chronic health conditions such as hypertension and heart diseases.
  • Restaurants usually serve large portions when compared to your home meals. You may end up overeating at restaurants, which can add to your calories for the day. 
  • Eating at restaurants regularly can be heavy on your pocket when compared to cooking your food at home.

Speaking of the pros and cons of eating in and eating out, what you must understand is that there are ways to make both options work for you. While cooking at home, you can avoid wastage by buying the right amount of ingredients and cooking only as per the requirement. You can also try a new ingredient or a new dish every week to prevent the boredom of having the same dishes repeatedly.

Similarly, while eating outside, you can order half portions in order to prevent overeating. You can also eat half and get the rest packed for later. You can request less oil, salt, or sugar in your dishes in order to make them healthier. 

Adding salads as a side dish can improve the nutritional value of your food. Choosing plain water or herbal tea as a meal accompaniment instead of sugary juices, sodas, or alcohol, can also enhance the health quotient of your meal. 

Don’t Have Time To Read?

  • Cooking your food is often considered healthier when compared to eating out. However, you should not have to deprive yourself of the pleasure of dining out occasionally with friends and family.
  • Thus, it is important to analyse the pros and cons of eating in and eating out.
  • Making your own food helps you make healthier choices and control your portion sizes. It also helps you stay faithful to your weight loss diet plans and ward off temptations.
  • However, cooking at home takes a lot of time and effort, and can get repetitive and boring. It can lead to wastage if you are unaware of the amount of ingredients required. 
  • Eating at restaurants can treat you to different varieties of food that you might not encounter otherwise. It saves you time and effort in between your busy schedule and gives you a chance to socialise.
  • However, eating out can add to your calories and can increase the chance of developing chronic medical conditions such as obesity and hypertension. Eating at restaurants regularly can also be heavy on your pocket when compared to cooking your food at home.
  • You can try and maintain a balance between cooking at home and eating out by accepting the best features of both the options and working around the disadvantages. 
  • Use the Phable Care App to consult India’s leading nutritionists and dieticians to get real-time remote care from the comfort of your home. Check out our store to order healthy treats, weighing scales, fitness bands, and more! We also have a Weight Management Program which provides 360º care. Start your weight management journey with Phable.

Friendly Asked Questions

Does restaurant food cause weight gain?

Yes! Eating from restaurants regularly can lead to weight gain as the food they serve is generally high in calories and fats. Also, restaurants usually serve larger portions than home-cooked meals, making you eat more than is required. 

Is it ok to eat outside once a week?

Eating out occasionally is fine and does not take a toll on your health. However, you can ask for half portions while eating at restaurants to avoid overeating. Customising your plates and avoiding unhealthy ingredients that are high in salt or unhealthy fats will help make your dishes healthier. Opt for salads as side dishes and plain water or herbal teas as accompaniments.

How can I eat healthy at a restaurant?

For eating healthy at restaurants you can opt for more plant-based food such as salads, either as the main course or as a side dish. They are often a healthy mix of vegetables, legumes, lean meat and proteins such as eggs. You can also go for baked, roasted, or grilled food instead of their fried versions. Avoid sugary juices, sodas, and alcohol and opt for plain water or herbal tea instead. 

How to prepare healthy food at home?

To prepare healthy food at home, firstly plan your meals for a few days or the week and stock up on fresh and healthy ingredients. Steam, bake, grill, braise, boil or use the microwave to cook your food. Modify or eliminate recipes that include too much butter/fat/oil or ask you to deep fry. Avoid added oils, butter, or sugar in foods. Use non-stick cookware and air-fryers to cook healthier versions of recipes.