Veganism is a lifestyle choice and is now being adopted by many around the globe. But what does being vegan mean?
Being vegan essentially means abstaining from eating or using anything that comes from animals. Food items such as meat, dairy products, milk, eggs, certain chocolates, etc., are not consumed or used by those who are vegan. But veganism does not end at food products or items. Being vegan implies staying away from all kinds of animal-derived stuff such as leather, animal-tested makeup products, fur, silk, etc. Vegan is a lifestyle that is not only good for the body but also for the planet. However, the myths revolving around veganism are many, including the vegan diet does not provide enough protein and fat, veganism is expensive, it is a lifestyle better suited for the well-off, etc. However, all of such statements could not be farther away from the truth, and the focus of this article is to clear the air around one of such false statements: “a vegan diet is expensive.”
Being Vegan On A Budget
A lot of vegan recipes call for common kitchen ingredients such as veggies, herbs, spices, rice, egg-free pasta or noodles, etc. However, the simplest way to avoid extra expense is by being creative. You already have a whole lot of vegan ingredients in your kitchen, so instead of going out of your way to get the expensive vegan items, replace or switch the ingredient with something else. Lots of vegan ingredients allow you to get creative with your cooking, keeping you healthy and allowing you to eat something new each day.
Buy In Bulk
Food items such as nuts and seeds turn out to be cost-efficient, especially when bought in bulk. In addition, products such as rice and oats are filling and stay well for quite a long time. Plan your shopping; this gives you time to figure out what you need and helps you compare prices in different supermarkets, which will help you cut costs. Also, another effective way of cutting the cost down is by batch cooking meals for the week.
Don’t Always Get Vegan “Meats”
You do not have to buy meat alternatives to follow veganism. A vegan diet has many flavors, so instead of finding alternatives to meat and other non-vegan products, try to explore new vegan flavors and food dishes; who knows, you might give up the meat and dairy flavor. A vegan diet can be costly if you go out of your way to find a vegan alternative to non-vegan food such as vegan chicken can be expensive, vegan steak, etc.
The easiest way to increase the nutritional value of your food and diet is by buying seasonal produce. Seasonal produce provides you with all the good nutrition and protein and minimizes cost. Did you know that fresh fruits and vegetables contain a much higher density of vitamins and minerals than frozen, canned, or preserved fruits and vegetables? Since seasonal fruits and vegetables are locally grown, you also end up helping the local farmers by choosing to buy seasonal produce.
Look For Budget-Friendly And Simple Vegan Recipes
The answer to most problems is available on the internet. If you are looking to cut back costs, look up budget-friendly vegan recipes online. There are a lot of tasty, vegan recipes that only call for two-three ingredients, such as:
- Pasta with chickpea cream and veggies
- Tomato soup with croutons
- Tofu sandwich
- Fried rice with veggies
- Tofu scramble
- Vegan shepherd’s pie
- Veg lasagna
Shop At Vegan-Friendly Stores
Due to the ongoing boom of veganism, many brands have come up with plant-based alternatives making it easier for vegans to find their desired food item without any hustle. In the United States, Kroger has now launched its brand of vegan meat alternatives, whereas Walmart stocks a huge range of vegan staples to ready meals for the better convenience of its shoppers.
Buy What You Need, Not What You See
Food waste is a massive issue in many countries, and the only way to rectify this problem is by buying what you need. However, if you end up with spare fresh ingredients, try to see if it’s possible to freeze them for later use. For example, vegetables such as peas, corn, etc., can be frozen and used later. You can also try cooking a large batch of chilies, curry, soup, and pasta and freeze them for later.
Make A list And Stick To It
Make your list and stick to it. The whole science behind piles of neatly stacked rows of food items is to tempt you into buying stuff you do not need. Lists are the best way to keep your impulsive shopping habit in check. If you plan your weekly meals, then make a list according to the recipe, and buy the ingredients you will require for the decided meals.
Pro Tip: Do not go shopping when you are hungry. The worst possible situation you can do for yourself is to go shopping on an empty stomach. Trust that those high rows of unhealthy food will tempt you, so avoid the supermarket on an empty stomach.
Well, there you have seven tips to help you be vegan while being on a budget. With substantial growth in the popularity of the vegan diet, there are many more options available in the vegan section. More and more brands come out, each with better vegan alternatives at a much affordable range. However, until your favorite brand decides to go affordable, you can keep up your diet rules by following the above methods.