Eating Vegan on a Budget

Most people know that eating vegan saves lives, but did you know that it can help you save money as well?

The idea that plant-based foods are pricey is a common misconception. It stems largely from the fact that products such as vegan meats and cheeses are still considered specialty items and aren’t typically purchased in large quantities by retailers (yet!). While they can be nice to have, they aren’t required for healthy vegan eating.

Actually, a whole-foods, plant-based lifestyle is very affordable. And the less processing, manufacturing, and packaging a food requires, the cheaper it is – and it’s typically healthier, too!

So here are our top five cost-saving tips:

  1. The best way to keep costs down is to cook at home. This includes packing your lunch.
  2. Meet your new best friends: rice, lentils, pasta, beans, grains, and spices. Not only are these staples cheap and versatile, they’re also long-lasting,so you won’t have to worry about wastage.
  3. Purchase local seasonal fruits and vegetables. They’re almost always cheaper than ones which are out of season. And don’t be afraid to switch to seasonal ingredients for a recipe. If a dish calls for sweet potato but pumpkin is in season and cheaper, you can make it work.
  4. Look for “accidentally vegan” products in your supermarket. There are loads of cheap finds on store shelves that aren’t specifically labelled “vegan”. Taking the time to read the ingredients (even on a supermarket’s own-brand products) can end up saving you a bunch of cash.
  5. Don’t stress about “organic” products. Buying organic produce is far cheaper than buying organic meat (which by the way, doesn’t mean animals didn’t suffer – they certainly did). But by cutting animal-derived “products” from your meals, you’ve already waved goodbye to a bunch of gross bacteria, antibiotics, carcinogens, and other toxins.

Not only is vegan eating good for your finances in the short term, you’ll also likely save cash over the long term, because vegans have a lower risk of suffering from cancer, heart disease, strokes, and diabetes, all of which are extremely expensive to treat. In addition, you won’t have to pay for costly cholesterol-lowering drugs (since vegan foods don’t contain cholesterol) or pricey gastric bypass surgery (because vegans are far less at risk of becoming obese).

Here are some fantastic food ideas for the frugal vegan:

Vegan Sausage Rolls

Burrito Burgers by BOSH!

Chickpea Sweet Potato Spinach Curry

Peanut Noodle Pasta Salad 

Creamy Vegan Mushroom Risotto

 

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Four-Day Meal Prep With Avant-Garde Vegan


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