Eating Healthy on a Tight Budget

Most individuals would readily agree that eating healthy foods yields great and lasting rewards–especially since an individual who eats healthy foods normally feels better.

And while some individuals are under the impression that eating healthy means spending a considerable amount of money on food, the truth is that eating healthy can be as affordable as eating unhealthily.

However, eating healthy on a tight budget is possible!

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How Eating Healthy Can Be Affordable?

eating healthy on a tight budget

Eating healthily can lead to being more satiated with smaller quantities of nutrient-rich food. So, quality over quantity.

However, those with tight budgets may wonder if it’s possible to truly eat healthy without spending more than they’re currently paying for food. Luckily, it is.

It can be easy to be drawn to inexpensive fast foods simply because they are inexpensive and fast.  However, they are often full of empty calories, excessive carbs, and high sugars that leave the individual feeling hungry, tired, and weak. 

Whereas, a smaller portion of healthy food, even if more expensive per portion, will often have more flavor and nutrients, leaving the individual feeling satisfied and energized.  Rather than needing more inexpensive fast food.

It is well worth it to search out and make healthy foods a part of your regular diet, even if it means one has to work with a tight budget. 

How to Eat Healthy Without Breaking the Bank?

9. Cook Large Portions

This might sound counter-intuitive at first, but it’s a great solution, especially if you’re just trying to feed yourself. Cooking larger portions is a great way to stretch out one meal into two days without thinking of more dinners.

Whether that be doubling a recipe or adding in a few more ingredients to make for a larger portion, there are several ways that to create hearty leftovers that can fill you up. Doing this will help you start eating healthy on a tight budget as it saves you from having to cook an added meal, whether it’s lunch or dinner.

READ MORE: The Importance of Eating Three Meals a Day

8. Buy Generic Brands

There’s an aesthetic with buying brands, especially the high-end brands, but eating healthy on a tight budget, it’s best to buy generic. There’s little to no difference between them, as all food manufacturers have to follow the same safety guidelines.

Please note though that you should always check the product to make sure that there are no added allergens or lower quality ingredients listed.

7. Couponing

Like buying generic brands or purchasing items on sale, this is a great way to save some money when shopping, whether you’re working on healthy meals or not. While starting out can be a bit tricky, if you follow through with it, it could become a natural thing that you do every week.

Couponing on various items might put you in a restriction of what you have to get each week, but thinking creatively and looking up simple recipes could help you save a lot and still purchase healthy ingredients, making great to start eating healthy on a tight budget.

6. Buy Fruits and Vegetables When They Are in Season

Fruits and vegetables that are in season are always less expensive than those that are not in season, and they often are fresher and taste much better as well. 

This means that it may be best to plan one’s meals around the availability of in-season foods, but this can be well worth it when one begins saving a considerable amount of money while still eating well.

5. Buy Frozen Fruits and Vegetables

Frozen fruits and vegetables can be natural and organic, and are often far cheaper than fresh fruits and vegetables. 

Better yet, they won’t spoil as quickly as fresh fruits and vegetables, which means that you can stock up for months without fear of wasting money or food when you fail to use it immediately.

4. Eat More Vegetables and Less Meat

A simple walk through the vegetable and meat sections of your local grocery store will quickly demonstrate the fact that the former items are far less expensive than the latter. 

Furthermore, one does not actually need to have immense amounts of meat in order to gain the protein needed, as many vegetables have very high protein counts. 

When buying meats, one should steer toward grass-fed beef, organic, free-range poultry, and wild-caught fish, which can drive the price tag up even further, and therefore such purchases can be well-balanced with many high-fiber, non-starchy, and healthy fat vegetables.

3. Shop Budget Proteins

Proteins are something that you can’t really replace in your meals. There are some great cheap proteins and even substitutions from actual meat that you can add into your daily meals to help you feel a bit fuller and feel healthier.

Some great options are chicken, beans or chickpeas, lentils and quinoa, tofu, eggs and canned meats or fish. Some easier, sometimes missed ingredients could be peanut butter, oats and milk, which make a great breakfast combined, and is a great way to start eating healthy on a tight budget.

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2. Shop At Warehouse Stores for Bulk Buys

The interest in healthy foods and healthy eating has spread far and wide, including into warehouse stores where bulk buys can save an individual a considerable sum of money. 

It is extremely helpful, however, to make a list prior to shopping at a warehouse store so that you don’t get steered off course with the many bargain deals available. 

It is also helpful to make a detailed and specific meal plan so that you can ensure that whatever you buy in bulk will not spoil prior to use.

1. Eat Food That Are Rich in Fiber

Fiber can slow the process of gastric emptying, balance an individual’s blood sugar, curb cravings and cause a rapid feeling of fullness. 

This essentially means that an individual who eats foods that are rich in fiber is more likely to eat less often and in smaller quantities, which means that less food must be purchased. 

Some examples of fiber-rich foods include avocados, lentils, nuts, seeds, and leafy green vegetables.


Initially, eating healthy on a tight budget can seem quite difficult as the individual tries to consider how they can purchase all the natural and organic foods at the high prices they are usually offered at. 

However, embarking upon this journey can soon open the door to many new ways that one is able to stretch their food budget as far as possible, without denying themselves the good foods they want and need.