One of my goals when starting my Instagram/blog was to show that eating healthy doesn’t need to be complicated. Especially if you’re eating healthy on a budget. The recipes I share are meant to be approachable, and ones that anyone can make, no matter what grocery store they shop at.
Sure, there are some health food products I absolutely love that are a bit pricier, but they’re definitely not needed to lead a healthy lifestyle. Be sure to read through my tips below!
Recently, I’ve been getting a bunch questions about budget friendly meals and groceries, so decided to put together a budget friendly meal planner for you guys to enjoy!
Eating healthy on a budget is definitely doable. This planner includes a grocery list, sample menu, and some of my favorite recipes! It’s meant to be a guide for you guys to get inspiration for how to prep meals for the week. The menu is just to give you an idea, so you can rearrange the meals and mix and match what sounds good to you.
It includes recipes for breakfast– like these vegetable egg muffins, lunch– like these tuna patties, and dinner– like this pan-seared salmon recipe.
This grocery list was based off of 1 vegetarian and 1 meat eater, so prices may vary for families who eat more meat during the week and stick to a strictly kosher diet! Keep in mind, some things you purchase may last you more than a week, bringing the budget down for the following week.
Before you dive into the planner, here are some recommended tips I have for grocery shopping. Specifically things to look out for in certain products,
Tips for staying within budget
- Make a list! It’s much easier to grab only what you need when you have a list to follow
- Search through your freezer, pantry and fridge before shopping to work your menu off of what you have at home.
- Buy store brand for products that don’t matter! There are a few products and brands that I love and prefer to spend a little extra money on, like a good whole grain bread, crackers, and yogurt (YOU decide what’s important to you!) But for other things, like beans, nut butters, and pastas- where ingredients are likely the same, I grab the cheapest option!
- Don’t shop hungry– it’s totally fine to impulse buy and grab a few fun foods while you’re shopping, but I find that when I shop hungry, I spend a lot more than I need to! Have a little snack before you go, and include a fun food or two on your grocery list.
Tips for grocery shopping
I do not purchase all organic produce. I try to buy organic when I’m able to, but not produce that has an outer layer that I won’t eat (bananas, avocados, etc). Just be sure to rinse your produce well!
The one thing to look out for with breads or wraps is added sugar and fiber. I try to avoid buying ones that have any added sugar, and ideally opt for ones that have at least 4-5g of fiber per serving.
Speaking of added sugar- it tends to creep into foods you may not have thought of. Most nutrition labels will have a separate category labeled “added sugar” so you’ll know if it was added vs naturally found in the food. If they don’t, take a look at the ingredients to see if you catch any!
Some common foods that may have added sugars:
- tomato sauce
- nut butters- added oil is ok if you like that texture, but you can find natural nut butters that are just as good!
Since granolas and flavored yogurts will usually always have added sugar, my general rule of thumb is to aim for 5g or less per serving!
The freezer section should not be feared, especially for fruits and veggies! Frozen fruits and veggies are just as nutritious as fresh ones, and cheaper too! The only difference is that their texture is not always the same if you prefer to snack on them. I love having frozen veggies around for a quick stir fry or veggie roast, and frozen fruits for oatmeal bowls or smoothies.
Those are just some of my tips to navigating the grocery store! Feel free to leave any comments below with any other questions. I hope you guys enjoys this guide!
For reference, I shopped at my local shop rite!
I’ve found your blog and website (yep, old school) and truly love the recipes and the notes you give for each recipe. I have a short list of your recipes and look forward to making them. Thank you.
Thank you, Dawn! I’m so happy to hear that.
My weight loss 1 pound