Eating Healthy On A Budget

May 28, 2011 by

How To Eat Healthy On A Budget


The other day I saw a documentary, where people who were overweight and trying to eat healthy said that it is too expensive to eat lean, that’s why they buy fast food.

Eating healthy is possible and recommended if you are on a budget. Junk food is actually more expensive than healthy food. You just have to know where to shop and what to buy.

These are few things you can buy when you are on a budget, but want to eat healthy.


Canned Tuna ( the only thing I eat canned ). Tuna has a lot of protein and it’s very inexpensive. You can make sandwiches and salads from tuna. I like to make it with light mayo and pickled relish.


Chicken – you can buy all natural no hormones or antibiotics added chicken Whole, because it is less expensive than buying it in pieces.


Turkey – you can buy a whole turkey as well, cook it and make lunch meat all week.  I never buy packaged lunch meat, I always either cook a whole turkey or chicken and make lunch meat out of that.


Eggs – stock up on eggs, they have a higher protein value than beef and they are way less expensive.


Low Fat Cottage Cheese – I like to buy the Friendship brand cottage cheese, it is the only one I found that tastes good and is only has 3 g of sugar per serving. Make sure you get the one with the pink label.


Oatmeal – it is 2 dollars for a huge pack. Oatmeal is whole grain, low fat and has protein.


Brown Rice – only few dollars for a large bag. Brown rice is better than white rice because it has nutrients vs white rice which is nothing but empty carbs.


Bananas – I think bananas is the cheapest fruit, it is a great form of carbohydrate and it is high in potassium. No matter which store you go to, bananas are very cheap.


Another thing to note, shop at Farmers Market. It is so much less expensive and the food quality is great.  Especially if you want to get fresh Fruits and Veggies.


Make Your Own Bread – It is much healthier and less expensive than buying it at the store.  Healthy bread with great ingredients that are unprocessed is expensive to shop, so make your own.  The other day I made the most amazing Whole Grain Bread.  It’s been lasting me all week, I have a piece for breakfast and lunch.


One of my friends told me the other day that she spent 40 dollars on her food last month. She budgets everything and she goes out of her way to find places with great food for less money.  And if you get creative enough you can stretch it out even further:

Here is a comment from Mike – one of my readers, he gets very creative with food and nutrition:

I’m sure that everyone that frequents your site probably go through quite a lot of vegetables over the course of the week. I developed something about a year ago that my kids look forward to every time I make it.
I call it Garbage Soup and it goes something like this: whenever you make salad, soup, anything with veggies in it, you always wash the mushrooms, kale, onions, etc… Then you break off the stems, peels and ends of everything. What do you do with them? They’re washed already and they’re perfectly acceptable vegetable matter. I take a large Tupperware container and throw them in there. Then I stick it in the freezer. About once a week, I take it out and dump it in a pot of boiling water.
I cook the heck out of it and add some salt and pepper. Strain it thoroughly. The results have never failed to be delicious and it never comes out the same way twice. The resulting broth is excellent when you have a cold, or in place of tea. It’s really amazing to cook rice in it.
Give it a shot. I promise you’ll make it a routine.. plus, your’e recycling… another plus, if you can compost, the cooked veggies break down easier.


So here you have it, you can eat healthy and stay on a budget!

Let me know if you have any other suggestions.





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  • Tess The Bold Life

    I’ve never heard of that cottage cheese brand. I also find the soup a great idea. Thanks for the helpful tips.

    • Tatianna

      I get it at Publix. It is the only one that comes close to the one I use to eat in Russia 🙂

  • Wilderkj

    Those individual items are healthy and inexpensive but one needs a lot more variety to be truly healthy and it is hard to balance calories and nutrition on a budget. 

    • I think that Farmers Markets are a great place to buy fruits and veggies, it’s also not very expensive. It’s just a matter of looking around.

  • Daybelis2393

    I think nutrition is primordial and should not be ignored due to the cost of it. Health is far more important to me at least than buying an outfit or treating myself to a ‘ splurge’. My friends call me weird because I tend to spend my money on organic food products, vegetables, natural food stores etc but in reality I just want to live a healthy lifestyle. I can’t explain to you the joy I feel when I walk in the whole foods market lol, it’s heaven to me!

    • OMG me too!  I’d rather buy organic foods then shoes or clothes or anything else.  I rarely shop for clothes, I do love good skin care and perfume but If I had to choose perfume or organic food I will definitely go with food 🙂

  • Dara

    I like that you know how cheap it really is to eat healthy. Being away from home and at college the past two years I have discovered this too. Here are a few tips on how to eat healthy on a budget if you do not mind me adding:

    1. Buy in Bulk! – if you have access to a store where buying in bulk is possible, do so and safe a wad of cash. So, as an example, I eat a lot of oats and other grains. I found out that the local grocery store sells grains in bulk ; oatmeal (plain old fashioned) is .99 a pound! Now look at the cannister of oats (Quaker old fashioned oats, for example) and see how many pounds are in that one container and then look at how much it costs. From my comparisons – I would pay about $3-4 on a 2 lb. container of oats. Any time you buy a prepackaged food such as Quaker oats you are not only paying for the product but the name brand of the company and the packaging for that product.
    2. Buy the lesser brand – if you cannot buy in bulk then go with the store brand and not that popular name brand that is usually more expensive
    3. Eat with the seasons – buying fruit in its season not only saves you money buy also increases the nutrient value of that produce.
    4. Homemade – if it comes in a package you can more than likely make it at home and doing so will increase your nutrient intake. For example, BBQ sauce, ketchup, mayonnaise, pickle relish, and mustard – all of these can be made at home without the added preservatives. Just ask yourself every time, “Do I want to spend time or money?”