One of the things I hear most from people when we talk about eating clean or healthy is, “but I can’t afford to eat healthily!”
I honestly used to think the same way, but now I know that everything is doable on a budget - you just have to prioritize and do a little research! Below are a few of my favourite ways to eat clean on a budget.
Use Your Freezer
There are so many great foods that freeze so well! When I stock up on our favourite staples, I always consider how well it keeps. Since there are only two of us, our freezer gets a lot of use. Some favourites to stock in there are spinach, kale, tofu, beans, nuts(!), and tomatoes.
Make a meal plan to most effectively use your groceries.
Eat less meat/Be a vegetarian
We choose to not eat any meat at all and it has cut down on our grocery bill. Yes, while there are meat substitutes out there that are wildly expensive, we choose to greatly limit these as well and opt for making it from scratch or only having it once in a blue moon (a.k.a. When there is a crazy sale). Most meat substitutes found in stores are highly processed and full of sodium anyway, and aren’t the best for you!
Consider a Homemade Pantry
Pancake mixes, cake mixes, canned beans….all of these things and more you can do yourself! It’s actually simple, takes the same amount of time as it would to go to the store and buy them, and is much better for both your wallet and your body! One cookbook I use that helps me greatly is The Homemade Vegan Pantry. I love all of the ideas in it and adapt them for my own use.
Save Your Scraps
Don’t waste those onion skins and celery and carrot ends! Collect them and store them in your freezer and make a simple vegetable broth (that can also be frozen, by the way!). That saves on having to buy veggie stock.
Reusable Water Bottles
If drinking more water is in your cleaner eating plan, skip buying the bottled water and the extra sugar and calories from bottled juices and invest in a good quality reusable water bottle. Pay next to nothing and stay hydrated - it’s a no-brainer and a win-win.
Shop in Season and Locally
Start paying attention to what is in season for cheaper produce. Shopping locally will not only give you a great deal but also help your local farms and community! Your freezer comes in handy for this as well - so much produce, depending on what you want to do with it later - can be frozen until you're ready for it. That way, it doesn't go to waste.
Skip Organic Produce in Some Cases
If you've ever heard of the dirty dozen then you'll know that there are some foods that you can skip in the organic section, and some you probably shouldn't. Your decision!
Try Store Brands
So many grocery stores offer high-quality organic food for less [enter applause]!
Don't Forget Apps!
Using apps to save me money has really paid off over the last few years - no pun intended! One of my favourite rebate apps for grocery shopping is Ibotta and I love it! By the way: Use my referral link to download Ibotta and get a $10 welcome bonus!
Eating clean doesn't have to make you go broke by any means! With a little extra effort, you can make your dollars stretch!
How do you eat clean on a budget?