Going Vegan on a Budget: 8 Wallet-Friendly Tips for Getting Started
Lots of people think going vegan means a higher grocery bill, with a shopping cart full of expensive specialty items. While it’s true that the price of some plant-based alternatives like faux meats and cheeses can add up, there are lots of ways to lower your grocery bill while sticking to a plant-based diet! In fact, in many cases, going vegan can be even more economical than eating meat.
Check out these 8 awesome tips for going vegan on a budget.
How to go vegan on a budget
1. Cook simple meals at home with whole foods
Healthy vegan diet staples like legumes, grains, and produce are super budget-friendly, and overall, much more affordable than eating out or using specialty ingredients. For example, instead of buying imitation beef burgers, you can make your own veggie burger or bean burger using real, fresh ingredients!
2. Don’t buy luxury vegan products
Pre-made specialty vegan products like plant-based burger meat, sausage, and cheese can add up quickly! And, often, these products aren’t exactly healthy and are made with a plethora of highly processed and impossible-to-pronounce ingredients and GMOs. Stick to the basics and make simple substitutions instead.
3. Eat with the season.
Eating seasonal fruits and vegetables are cheaper, tastier, healthier, and more eco-friendly than eating produce that is out of season. Find out why you should eat seasonally and what’s in season right now on our blog.
4. Work on your vegan meal plan ahead of time
Meal planning before heading to the grocery store helps you stay on track and on budget. We all know that grocery shopping hungry easily leads to overspending! Plan out your week’s meals and make a list ahead of time of what you need.
Steal our complete plant-based grocery list to help plan your trip!
5. Buy in bulk
Some staple ingredients, like nuts, can still be on the expensive side. However, if you buy in bulk instead of purchasing small, individually packaged bags, these foods easily become much more affordable. Other ingredients to buy in bulk include beans, rice, pasta, seeds, flour, dried fruit, and more. As an extra bonus, buying in bulk is better for the environment because you’re reducing plastic packaging and waste!
6. Cook wallet-friendly recipes
Make recipes that utilize staple ingredients you likely already have on hand instead of recipes that require spices or herbs that you will no longer have a use for after making that one dish. Here are some budget-friendly staples for vegan cooking:
- Starches: rice, potatoes, pumpkin, oats, millet, pasta
- Vegetables: your favorites that are in season! We love having carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, and leafy greens on hand.
- Fruits: your favorites that are in season!
- Legumes: black beans, red beans, lentils
- Nuts: peanuts, cashews, almonds, and nut butters
7. Use your freezer to improve your vegan meal prep game and fight food waste
Made too much stew or pasta sauce? Bought more berries than you can eat? Instead of wasting food, freeze it! You can cook your own frozen meals and freeze items like fruits, vegetables, herbs, and even pantry essentials like rice, flour, and bread! Find more freezer-friendly hacks here.
8. Grow your own food
Growing your own food is one of the best ways to go vegan on a budget! Plants like kale and lettuce are really easy to grow in your backyard, and you can also easily regrow things like green onion, cabbage, and leeks from scraps.
Delicious vegan recipes you have to make!
Meal planning ahead of time is so important, but sometimes, it can be a little tricky to find inspiration. Fortunately, you can find some amazingly delicious plant-based recipes in the Wholesome Culture Cookbook! Here’s a collection of some of our favorite recipes below:
Cauliflower Buffalo Chick’n Wings
You will not miss the chicken with these deliciously spicy cauliflower wings! With just 10 minutes of prep time and 30 minutes of cook time, these wings come together fast and are the ultimate comfort food! Get the recipe here.
Piña Colada Smoothie
Perfect for summer, this delicious piña colada smoothie will make you want to get caught in the rain! This super simple but tasty treat has only four ingredients and comes together in less than five minutes. Amazing! Hop over to #17 to peep the recipe.
Balsamic and Basil Avocado Toast
Whether it’s breakfast, lunch or dinner, this balsamic and basil toast is perfect for any occasion. Healthy and easy to make, this dish will be one of your new go-to’s! Get the recipe here.
Vegan Double Chocolate Brownies
Shhh… we’ll let you in on a little secret… These delightfully rich and scrumptious brownies actually have extra firm tofu in them! Make and share a tray of these delicious baked treats, and you won’t miss baking with eggs or milk! Get the recipe here.
Not sure what you feel like making? Take our quiz to help you decide!
Got delicious plant-based food on the brain? Us too! Here are some more resources to help inspire us all!
- Prep These 5 Easy Vegan Lunches for the Best Week Ever
- 10 Plant-Based One-Pot Meals You Can Make Ahead (And Eat All Week Long!)
- How to Be More Sustainable in the Kitchen: 25 Simple Ways to Cook More Mindfully