Cheapest healthy diet possible
Veganism can easily be tailored to fit into most people’s lives, regardless of income. It’s a myth that eating a vegan diet is expensive by nature. In fact, vegan diets in particular are very accommodating to budget living and eating. Many of the foods considered to be staples in a typical, healthy vegan diet are very affordable – grains, beans, seeds, and legumes are all good examples. You can make a lot of delicious vegan food on a budget! Vegetable curries with rice and tofu, creamy or broth-based soups, vegetable stir-fries, sandwiches, veggie & bean chilies, pasta dishes, and salads are all examples of tasty and affordable vegan meals.
Sometimes a switch to vegansim can inspire you to lead a healthier lifestyle and you may find yourself wanting to try some of the “super foods” on the market. That’s awesome! But pricier super foods aren’t imperative to achieve a balanced, vegan diet. Regardless of how you choose to structure your vegan lifestyle, here are some ideas to help you save money while you’re shopping!
Most grocery stores display the unit price for each item, but a lot of grocery stores also display the price per weight for items. Use this to compare prices between brands and different sizes of products. If your grocery store doesn’t list price per weight, consider using a calculator to compare prices. Often times, the “cheaper” option can turn out to be more expensive by weight.
Produce: Fresh vs. Frozen
If you’re into making smoothies, adding fruit to oatmeal, or baking with fruit, consider buying frozen fruit. Frozen produce isn’t always cheaper, so make sure you’re being thorough with your price comparisons. If you come across a great deal on fresh produce, stock up and freeze it. This works great with berries, bananas, and other fruit for use in smoothies. Remember, frozen produce usually contains more nutrients then fresh produce – this is because the product is frozen at it’s peak ripeness and will not lose nutrients during transport to your grocery store. It is a misconception that nutrients are somehow lost during the freezing process.
Bulk vs. Packaged
Purchasing some items from the bulk sections can be a great way to save money, especially if you only need a small amount. Often, the largest package will be the cheapest by weight, but don’t bother if you don’t need much. Great things to pick up in the bulk section include:
- nuts and seeds
- spices and herbs
- dried fruit, make sure they’re not over-dried, and that the containers are close to air-tight
- snack items
- more expensive items that you’ve never tried before. Find out if you like them before you buy a larger package!
Organic vs. Non-organic
Whether you choose to buy organic or not is up to you. In general, organic foods tend to be more expensive. If you don’t usually buy organic produce, make sure you check out the organic section anyways. When organic produce goes on sale it can be cheaper than non-organic.
Brand Name vs. Generic Brand
Generic brand items can be an great way to save money when shopping. Items that are awesome for buying generic are:
- baking supplies: flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, corn starch, etc.
- nuts & seeds
- dried fruit