Going vegan can be expensive if you don’t know the different hacks that exist. So for Veganuary, let us be your guide on how to eat plant-based without having to spend a fortune. Read on to discover 5 tips for going vegan on a budget:
1/ Make your own meals
One thing you need to remember is that you don’t need to buy vegan products to eat vegan. Why buy products that are expensive when you can make it yourself or find some cheaper alternatives that are just as delicious. For example, instead of buying almond milk from the store, which can be pricey, make it at home using a high powered blender or food processor. Making your own condiments is another way to spice up your vegan meals on a budget. Vegan mayo is super easy to make for instance. You will only need oil, vinegar, soy milk and salt. Et voilà! In two minutes you have a condiment that can be used in your salads, sandwiches, burgers and fries!
2/ Buy your dried goods in bulk
Usually, the larger the quantity you buy, the cheaper it is per unit. That’s why the bulk section of supermarkets and bulk food stores are almost always cheaper when it comes to pasta, rice, flour, beans, grains and dried fruits. Instead of purchasing small,individually packaged bags, you can buy in larger quantities and save money per unit. Plus, by buying in bulk, you’re reducing plastic packaging and waste!
Do be careful however not to buy too much fresh food that you won’t have time to eat and that will be left to turn bad. Nothing is more expensive than throwing away food that you didn’t eat!
Photo: Glass containers filled with dry food (Source: Unsplash)
3/ Shop at Asian markets
Asian markets are the place to go to get big blocks of tofu, rice, noodles, and coconut milk at a cheaper price than in supermarkets. The hack is to buy an item in big quantities, tofu for example, cut it in pieces and freeze the parts that you will eat later in plastic containers full of water. Freezing allows you to save money but can also help to improve the texture in the case of tofu. You can also find miso and soy sauce in Asian markets, ingredients that can be used in many different dishes to spice up your vegan journey!
Photo: Asian condiments on store shelf (Source: Unsplash)
4/ Work on your meal plan ahead of time
Another tip is to plan your meals in advance. As mentioned above, it’s less expensive to buy in big quantities, and planning your meals can give you an overview of the recipes you will be cooking the following days, and plan what you need to buy. By preparing a list of groceries, you can keep track of your budget, it’s a win-win!
Photo: Trays of food (Source: Pexels)
5/ Grow your own food
Finally, growing your own food is a way to eat vegan without spending too much money. Fresh herbs such as Oregano and Rosemary can be very expensive and tend to go bad fast. Our solution is to show your green thumb by keeping a couple of fresh herbs (don’t forget to water them, herbs are not cacti…) and using only what you need for a recipe. Don’t worry, you don’t need a garden to grow things, only a small balcony, or a sunny window where you can expose your pots. It’s as simple as that!
Now for those who have a more spacious yard, you can try to grow your own fruits and vegetables, such as tomatoes, peppers, radishes, lettuce, kale. These are not the most expensive fruits in the supermarket but nothing tastes better than freshly picked food, without heavy pesticides that you can find in commercial farming.
Photo: Vegetables in a basket (Source: Pexels)
And that’s it for the tips on how to go vegan with a budget! Try these out and see if it makes going vegan easier and more accessible!