Updated: Nov 3
Eating healthy; that means that I have to stand for hours in the kitchen and spent a great amount of my income on groceries? Wrong! We provide you with the top 5 tips for eating well on a budget.
1. Food prep & do it yourself
Ordering takeaway or eating in restaurants is more expensive and less healthy most of the times. You don’t need to be a star cook nor lots of time to eat well on a budget. Taking just two hours one or two days a week to prep the meals for the week will not only save you a lot of money but also keep you off unhealthy processed snacks and may also reduce your cravings if you have a nutritious meal. Cook legumes and oven or steamed vegetables in a big batch and you already have the base for a delicious nutritious bowl. Learn how to do simple sauces or a good spice mix and you stay away from all the added sugar and additives. Prepare your breakfast the night before such as overnight oats or chia pudding to save time in the morning and don’t grab a croissant on the go. Plan ahead and establish a habit and trust me, your whole lifestyle will change.
2. Food waste & leftovers
Be creative with your leftovers. Make a delicious soup out of your leftover oven veggies, make vegetarian patties with your leftover beans or lentils and quinoa, make a big nutritious bowl with any leftovers and some fresh leafy greens, etc.
Reduce food waste by using parts of the vegetables that you would normally throw away, such as the greens of the carrots for a delicious pesto, the broccoli stem and cauliflower leaves for soups, etc.
3. Eat Seasonal
Buying seasonal is not only most of the times cheaper but it is also healthy to keep your body in balance. If you listen to your body you will feel that you craves more warm and ‚heavier‘ foods such as soups and stews, using the seasonal vegetables such as pumpkin, root vegetables and cabbage.
4. Buy in bulk
Buying in bulk is usually cheaper and will also safe you time. If you want to want to put a little bit more effort into your meals you will also safe a lot of money buying the legumes uncooked and cook them in bulk. They easily hold 5-6 days in an airtight contained in the fridge and for a month in the freezer.
5. Share with friends and communities
When going on the market we can often but a larger quantity for a cheaper price. But fresh ingredients don’t last long. Buying larger quantities and sharing them with your housemates and friends will benefit everyone and can form a beautiful community. Remember, your actions will affect the people surrounding you and they will affect you back. You are way more likely to have a healthy lifestyle if you live among healthy and inspiring people.
You don’t need to be a star cook nor lots of time to eat well on a budget.
Start with small steps and implement small changes. Soon they will become a habit and your lifestyle will become progressively healthier.
Foods we should prioritize when trying to get the best bang for our buck
I grew up with a very natural diet and mainly plant based. When moving out of my parents house and living on a student budget, nutrition and my health remained very important for my. Fortunately, I realized that my way of eating was also very budget friendly. I could definitely get the best bang for the buck. Have a look at your grocery receipt, if you are not plant-based, the most expensive items on the list will probably me meat and cheese. Nowadays you can also find surprisingly cheap meat. But do you know what is in there? Antibiotics? How did the animal live and what did it eat?
Healthy eating is not necessarily more expensive than other kinds of diets
You don't need to buy superfoods coming from the other side of the world.