Want to start eating a vegan diet on a budget but don’t know where to start? People may think that eating a vegan diet is expensive, but that is where they would be wrong. If done right, a vegan diet can be surprisingly affordable for most people.
These ten tips will help you to start eating a budget-friendly vegan diet that is still wholesome and satisfying. A vegan diet can even be cheaper than a non-vegan diet because so many vegan foods are very cheap.
1. Meal Plan
Meal planning helps you to avoid overspending and breaking your grocery budget as you will know exactly what you need to buy. You can create a detailed shopping list and stick to it, which will prevent unnecessary spending.
This will also help your money to go further since you will only be buying the necessities instead of purchasing items that won’t be used. Make sure to check out our meal plan archive to help you keep your weekly meals fun, fresh, and delicious!
2. Compare Prices
If you want to start eating a vegan diet on a budget, you should get into the habit of comparing prices. Keep an eye out and start paying attention to the price difference of canned, frozen, and fresh foods.
Because a vegan diet is made up mainly of produce, it is a good idea to figure out what kind of produce options are the most affordable. It might be cheaper for you to buy canned beans instead of dried or frozen vegetables instead of fresh ones.
Just the simple act of comparing food prices can dramatically lower your grocery bill and help you to stick to a tight grocery budget.
3. Limit Processed Foods
One reason why people automatically assume that a vegan diet is expensive is because many vegan substitutes tend to be on the pricier side. That is why these types of processed foods should be limited in order to maintain an affordable vegan diet.
Specialty vegan foods such as dairy-free cheese, vegan sausages, or vegan ice cream are all examples of expensive food items. These foods should be bought occasionally as treats instead of being bought in large quantities.
If you really want to be able to eat a vegan diet on a budget, you will need to rely more on whole foods instead of vegan substitutes.
4. Buy in Bulk
Buying in bulk can be one of the best ways to save a few dollars for each grocery shopping trip. Especially if you have certain foods that you regularly buy in large quantities.
Foods such as dried, canned, and frozen goods are all great options when it comes to buying in bulk. If you find yourself regularly grabbing foods such as grains, beans, or frozen vegetables, you should try buying them in bulk instead.
Bulk buying is more affordable and will help you to stock up on food that you would already be buying on a consistent basis.
5. Shop for Seasonal Produce
Not only is produce better quality when it is in season, but it can be much more affordable to buy. This is why shopping in season is so effective if you are on a budget but still want to be able to enjoy plenty of fresh produce.
6. Buy More Whole Foods
Some of the cheapest foods available to us are whole foods, such as grains, seeds, beans, fruit, and vegetables. Because a vegan diet is made up mainly of whole foods, it tends to be cheaper than other diets.
If you build your diet off of the whole foods that are widely available to you. You will be able to maintain a much more affordable diet.
Processed foods are often more expensive and can add up quickly, which is why eating a mostly whole foods diet is much more affordable. Not to mention that it is much healthier as well.
7. Follow Sales
Depending on where you shop, you could follow weekly and monthly food sales. This is a great way of taking advantage of price discounts on foods that you would normally buy anyway.
Sales are a great time to stock up on foods that you know you will need frequently. It can also be a good opportunity to buy specialty items and treats that you normally wouldn’t spend the money on.
Just keep in mind that certain stores have better sales while others have no sales at all.
8. Shop at Cheaper Stores
If you are finding it difficult to shop for a vegan diet on a budget, it might be because you are shopping at the wrong stores. One of the biggest mistakes you can make is shopping at health food stores or other specialty stores that are higher in price.
Shopping at stores like these will double, if not triple your grocery bill even if you buy only what you need. These types of stores are just too expensive and will cause you to go over your grocery budget no matter how carefully you shop.
In order to stick to a tight budget on a vegan diet, you will want to shop at more affordable stores, which are usually chain stores.
9. Buy Off Brand Items
We often have a tendency to turn up our nose at off-brands, but you might be surprised by them. There are many off-brands that are just as good as the real thing while being a fraction of the original price.
Cereal is a great example of this as many off-brand cereals are just as good as the original while being half the price. This is an easy way to shrink your grocery bill without having to limit your groceries.
10. Stick to Your Grocery List
This is a very important tip if you want all of your hard work to pay off when you go grocery shopping. None of your planning will amount to anything if you don’t stick to your carefully formulated grocery list when you go shopping.
In order to stay within your budget, you have to follow your grocery list to a T, don’t get distracted or tempted by other items around you. A large culprit of overspending is buying things that you don’t need.
If you have meal planned and created your list accordingly, you shouldn’t need any additional groceries. So, you will have to get used to not shopping off of your list, otherwise, you will end up overspending.
Eating a vegan diet doesn’t have to be expensive or unrealistic. Most vegans eat a very simple diet consisting of affordable and easy to find whole.
If you are worried that going vegan is going to be too expensive for you just try it! You would be surprised at how many foods are vegan and how affordable they really are if you are looking in the right areas.
Learn How to Cook Plant-Based Meals at Home!
Reducing your meat intake and eating more plant-based foods is known to help with chronic inflammation, heart health, mental wellbeing, fitness goals, nutritional needs, allergies, gut health, and more! Dairy consumption also has been linked to many health problems, including acne, hormonal imbalance, cancer, prostate cancer and has many side effects.
For those of you interested in eating more plant-based, we highly recommend downloading the Food Monster App — with over 15,000 delicious recipes it is the largest plant-based recipe resource to help reduce your environmental footprint, save animals and get healthy! And, while you are at it, we encourage you to also learn about the environmental and health benefits of a plant-based diet.
Here are some great resources to get you started:
- Weekly Vegan Meal Plans
- Plant-Based Health Resources
- Plant-Based Food & Recipes
- Plant-Based Nutrition Resources
- The Ultimate Guide to Plant-Based Nutrition
- Budget-Friendly Plant-Based Recipes
- High Protein Plant-Based Recipes
- Plant-Based Meal Prep
- Weekly Meal Plan: Budget-Friendly Plant-Based recipes for Athletes
- Five Simple Meal Planning Hacks to Cut Down on Food Costs and Waste
- 8 Inexpensive Plant-Based Foods That Pack a Surprising Amount of Health Benefits
- A Whole Foods Vegan Diet: The Ultimate Guide
For more Animal, Earth, Life, Vegan Food, Health, and Recipe content published daily, subscribe to the One Green Planet Newsletter! Lastly, being publicly-funded gives us a greater chance to continue providing you with high-quality content. Please consider supporting us by donating!