Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Day 42: Vegan on a Budget

    After one whole month of being vegan, and experimenting with different foods, my grocery bill went up drastically. A lot of people say being vegan is too expensive, but in reality that is only partly true. This last month I have been transitioning from different foods and made quiet a few mistakes (buying food with animal products hidden in the ingredients list) as well as tried many different substitute products. Since I bought a lot of “faux-meats” and “faux-dairy” products which are normally pricier than meat products my bill went up exponentially, but the same would happen if you were a “meat eater “and bought a ton of meat and dairy.

     Substitute meat and dairy products, along with prepackaged food, are pretty much the only pricey vegan foods. There is plenty of healthy food you can buy that will fit into your budget.

    I found this great article on L.O.V.E. (Living Opposed to Violence and Exploitation) with some tips on how to eat vegan for those of us that are on a budget, and decided to share it with you (as well as add a few things). Check out there website for more information on cheap meal plans and vegan recipes.

Here are some tips for those of us that are on a budget:

1) Cook if you have the facilities and the time
You can also freeze your leftovers for later, for most of us don’t have time to cook from scratch three times a day.

2) Read-made convenience foods
They cost more than cooking from scratch, but is cheaper than eating out

3) Limit the use of mock meats and other substitute foods
They can be more expensive than real meat and dairy

4) Shop in African, Asian, Latin American, Middle Eastern, and Mediterranean markets
There produce and bulk products tend to be cheaper

5) Shop at Farmers Markets
There produce can sometimes be cheaper than grocery stores and it’s locally grown

6) Buy in bulk
I know what you are all thinking…Costco!

7) Beans, grain, and vegetables
Beans , rice, pasta, as well as many vegetables can be super cheap

8) Buy canned or frozen
Frozen is better for you since it doesn’t have as much preservatives and sodium as most canned products do. Also by having canned / frozen vegetables you won’t have to worry about them going bad.

9) Make a lot, eat leftovers
You can simply eat it for lunch the next day, or freeze it for later use

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