Budget Friendly Meal Planning


Eating healthy on a budget is not always easy, but with some planning it can be done.  Find out below how the healthy pantry nutrition educators go about eating healthy while watching their budgets.


To get started, here are some general tips we noticed as we planned:

  1. Look for items that are on sale, especially your produce
  2. Consider buying store brands
  3. Add in low cost healthy foods such as, canned beans and whole grain pasta or rice
  4. Plan to have the meal a couple times in your week
  5. Plan a couple meals around an ingredient to avoid waste
  6. Use frozen fruits and vegetables

Other key points:

  1. There are so many ways to include fruits and vegetables-all forms count!
  2. There are low cost whole grain options available.
  3. You do not have to cook every single day to eat healthy. There are several options to cook once and eat throughout the week as well as no cook options.

Eating Healthy on a budget 3 day menu examples:

Erin’s Budget Friendly Sample Menu & Recipes used:

Banana Baked Oatmeal

Tuna Pasta Salad

30-Minute Chili


Alex’s Budget Friendly Sample Menu & Recipes used:

Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal  https://www.food.com/recipe/healthy-apple-cinnamon-oatmeal-277638 

Mafe https://oldwayspt.org/recipes/oldways-sweet-potato-peanut-stew-or-mafe-west-africa  

Veggie Fried Rice https://www.cookingclassy.com/very-veggie-fried-rice/   (variation of this)

Zesty Skillet Zucchini 


Cheri’s Budget Friendly Sample Menu & Recipes used:

Costa Rican Arroz con Pollo


Megan’s Budget Friendly Sample Menu & Recipes used:

Mediterranean Tuna Salad


Click here for even more healthy eating on a budget information:  https://www.myplate.gov/eat-healthy/healthy-eating-budget