Eat healthy, save money and live frugal.
We all know that eating isn’t cheap and with fast food joints on just about every street corner, eating healthy on a regular basis can be a pretty challenging task. That’s why we took some time to write an article about some of our favorite frugal foods that will be easy on your paycheck and keep you healthy at the same time!
The Super Legume.
Filled with protein, amino acids, and numerous health benefits lentils are our top food choice for cost/nutrition ratio. Lentils in fact receive about 30% of their calories from protein, and are good sources of folate, fiber, and vitamin B1. Lentils are widely available and can cost as little as $3.00 for a pound! Lentils come in over 12 varieties, have endless recipes available and have been eaten by people throughout the world for thousands of years. Lentils can sit nearly indefinitely on a shelf if left in their original packaging and left overs can be enjoyed for days if properly refrigerated.
Want to give this super legume a try? Check out a great recipe from allrecipes.com here.
If it’s good enough for Popeye, it’s good enough for us!
From tasty spinach dip and pasta sauce, to straight spinach salad Popeye knew best when he told kids to eat their spinach. Not only healthy by being filled with numerous essential vitamins, but spinach is also delicious too! Being one of the more flavorful green leaves spinach is chock-full of vitamins such as: Vitamins K & A, manganese, folate, magnesium, calcium and iron, just to name a few. Spinach can be purchased extremely cheap throughout the year and can cost just 2-3 bucks for a good sized bag.
The incredible edible yolk.
Whether hard boiled, sunny side up, scrambled or in an omelette It’s hard to deny the frugal advantages and health benefits of the simple egg. Available just about everywhere on the planet and able to be purchased by the dozen for under 2 bucks eggs are a tasty and affordable way to start off your day.
In 2007 LSU performed a study in which two groups of women were separated with group 1 eating a bagel each morning, and group 2 consuming 2 eggs each morning. After the study the women who ate eggs each morning had 65% more weight loss than the group who were eating bagels! So eggs are not only delicious and quick to prepare but they can help you lose weight too!
With their countless ways of preparation, high protein levels and essential amino acids adding a few eggs a week to your diet will help you save money and fill your stomach with a cheap and healthy breakfast food.
Skinny on price, big on flavor.
The simple oat having been consumed by people since the bronze age is yet another great frugal choice to start off any morning. A serving of Oats can cost less than $1.00 a meal, and can be added to any breakfast routine.
From a simple and tasty oatmeal soup, to oatmeal waffles and bread, oats are a easy choice for anyone looking to eat healthy while on a budget. The health benefits of oats include cholesterol lowering properties, plenty of fiber and 16 grams of protein per each 3.5oz serving. Ready for some oats? Be sure to try this Irish Oatmeal Soup recipe from skinnytaste.com
Leafy green goodness.
Kale which is actually form of cabbage is a healthy leafy green with a variety of uses. Whether in salad, soup or used in another form kale is full of nutrition such as Vitamin C, Vitamin K, Calcium and the powerful anti-oxidant beta carotene. Kale can readily be purchased just about anywhere, and costs around a buck for a bundle of the leafy green goodness.
Not a huge fan of kale’s taste? Try this crispy kale chips recipe that will surely change your mind.
6. Multigrain Pasta
Cold or hot, It’s always a good choice.
Our top ten list wouldn’t be complete without providing an option for you carb lovers out there, and with Its powers to fill you up, provide you energy and frugal cost multigrain pasta is our #6 choice. Multigrain pasta which you can buy in a variety of forms is the perfect choice to carb-load before a busy day or weekend excursion. Costing less than 2 bucks a box which can easily feed several people, top with simple seasonings or a red sauce for a delicious and healthy frugal meal.
7. Pumpkin Seeds.
Not just for Jack O’Lanterns.
Pumpkin seeds also known as “Pepita”, are one of the least expensive and most nutritious seeds around. Pumpkin seeds make for a great healthy snack that can be eaten cold or hot and flavored to suit just about anyone’s palate. Pumpkin seeds are good sources of protein, iron, zinc and magnesium. These tasty little seeds can be purchased very cheap, and make for an excellent replacement snack instead of chips or crackers.
Meat for vegetarians.
Sort of.. Tofu isn’t just for veg heads anymore, in fact tofu with its receptive base can be flavored to taste like just about anything and continues to gain popularity among the masses. Tofu is a high protein food in which coagulated soy milk is pressed into white blocks which turns it into this super healthy and versatile creation. Tofu can be found just about everywhere, but was first created in china around the time of 122-BC! Tofu can be a healthy alternative to red meat, and has numerous ways of preparation and seasoning. How about some Asian tofu Salad?
A Middle Eastern sensation.
This ancient and simple Middle Eastern dip is a must have on any frugal foodies list. Hummus comes in plenty of flavored varieties and can also be made very cheaply with just a few basic ingredients. Hummus is enjoyed throughout the world, for Its inexpensive cost, easy prep and diverse flavorful options. Hummus is mostly made from chickpeas which are a good source of iron, vitamin C, folate, Vitamin B6 and protein.
10. Quinoa /“Ki:nwa:/
It’s a seed, no It’s a grain… Discuss!
It’s cheap, It’s healthy and if you haven’t yet tried this little seed, be sure to add it to your next shopping list. Quinoa is actually the edible seeds of a species of “goosefoot” a perennial flowering plant, which grows in temperate regions throughout the world. Filled with high levels of protein, calcium and dietary fiber, Quinoa can be added to your next shopping adventure for about .30 cents per serving!