Healthy eating on a budget!

Eating healthy on a budget can be really hard, especially if you’re paying for rent, gas, and other necessities. However, it can be done. The first step to successfully budgeting a healthy meal is to just create a game plan for your groceries. Research and look up tips for healthy, low-cost meals and master the skill of finding the best deals on items.

Shopping smart is the key to eating healthy on a budget. Realizing that the “unit price” is the better option for you can be beneficial in the long run. Reading each food label can also help make decisions easier when being mindful of healthiness. Each aisle of the grocery store has deals and discounts. Finding those will also benefit anyone on a budget. Preparing healthy meals can be easier by using kitchen timesavers. This makes it easier because you can make meals faster and more efficiently. Looking up new recipes to try can also help make things less complicated. Plus, this can bring a family together by introducing new things to meals.
There are plenty of budget-friendly recipes to choose, from a slow-cooked beef stew to summer chicken spring rolls; there are a variety of healthy recipes that factor in a budget. There are other options such as a grilled salmon, avocado salad and pesto chicken kabobs.

There are even tofu stir-fry options for those who are vegetarians. Making menus for every 2-weeks is also a budget-conscious habit that can save money and benefit health-wise. Keeping grocery and pantry staples lists are also great ideas in following a budget. Referring to the ChooseMyPlate model can also be informative on which food groups are needed in each meal. Utilizing your resources such as SNAP-ED and FNS can also help save money and accomplish healthy meal preparation.

Enjoy!

Taylor

Taylor is a student intern working with EFNEP at N.C. Cooperative Extension, Pitt County Center.

RESOURCE:

http://www.choosemyplate.gov/budget
http://www.diabetes.org/mfa-recipes/recipes/budget-friendly.html 

 

15-Minute Soup

See how to make it here:

Makes 4 servings; Serving size 1½ cups

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups pre-soaked beans or 1 (16-ounce) can beans, drained
  • 1 (14-ounce) can low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 (16-ounce) can chopped or diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 (10-ounce) package frozen, chopped spinach
  • ½ Cup macaroni

Directions

  1. In a 2-quart pot, combine all ingredients except spinach and macaroni.
  2. Heat until the liquid comes to a boil.
  3. Stir in and break up spinach; bring to a boil again.
  4. Stir in macaroni and simmer until pasta is tender, about 6-8 minutes.

Nutrition information per serving

145 calories, Total Fat .5g, Saturated Fat 0g, Protein 7g, Total Carbohydrate 28g, Dietary Fiber 7g, Sodium 135mg. Excellent source of vitamins A and C. Good source of iron and calcium.