When you are on a low income and have a frugal budget when it comes to buying food, there are still delicious foods to buy on a budget. On this page, we are going to take a look at the top 50 foods that you can buy when you are shopping on a budget.
50 Foods To Buy On a Budget
Lentils are an excellent choice. Red lentils are perhaps the easiest to prepare, but you can also get many other varieties of lentils including brown lentils that produce more energy as you digest them.
Yes, you can buy canned beans, but you can also buy dried beans. They go a long way when it comes to getting energy from your food.
Chickpeas are an excellent alternative to lentils. You can make hummus out of them and also add them to stews and soups.
Rice is a fantastic source of carbohydrates which is what you need to make energy. A little bit goes a long way.
Instead of buying expensive breakfast cereals, you should buy oats instead. They are much better for you and you can use them in a variety of ways.
Bread made from wheat flour is expensive when you buy it in the shop. Instead of buying ready-made bread, buy flour and bake your own bread one day a week.
This is not flour as such but can be used as flour. You can make bread, but you can also make many other main course dishes including tray bakes.
Another grain that goes a long way. Very healthy and easy to use.
9 Chinese Noodles
Chinese noodles are pretty cheap in the shops. You can use them to make a whole meal in a bowl. In the Far East, it is popular to make a Ramen bowl. A dish with everything in it.
10 Italian Pasta
Another ready-to-go food that is cheap to buy. Add vegetables, fish, or vegetables and you have a complete meal.
Chicken eggs are great but don’t forget about other eggs including geese and duck eggs. An omelet is a meal in itself.
Once you have bought a bag of mushrooms, you can start growing them yourself. It takes a couple of weeks, but they will soon start growing under the right conditions.
Onions are packed with vital vitamin C. A great store cupboard ingredient as you can add it to many dishes for an extra nutritional boost.
Tomatoes are relatively inexpensive. Look out for deals on fresh tomatoes and start learning how to preserve them.
Cabbage is a great vegetable. You can use it fresh or you can cook with it. Lots of different varieties for you to choose from.
Beetroot is one of those root vegetables we tend to ignore. However, it can be boiled, roasted, and even made into a tasty spread.
When it comes to protein, cheese is not very expensive. You can grate it and add it when cooking with eggs.
18 Canned Tuna
Canned tuna is one of the most budget-friendly fish that we can buy. Easy to use in many different ways.
19 Canned Sardines
When you are shopping in the tinned or canned aisle, don’t forget to pick up a couple of tins of sardines. Serve on toast or eat on their own.
20 Corn On The Cob
Corn on the cob is also another budget-friendly food that goes a long way. You can boil it, roast it and even eat it raw if you would like.
Fresh spinach tastes nice and is better for you than lettuce. It is also a lot cheaper.
This is another cheap vegetable. Chop it up in a food processor with spinach and onions and you have a filling for a lasagne.
Almonds don’t have to be expensive. Look out for deals and store them in your pantry.
Another healthy nut that you can eat as a snack or cook with when you want to create something more culinary exciting.
No, this is not a nut – this is a legume. Easy to cook with or eat as a healthy snack when you buy the unsalted variety.
Prunes are packed with vitamin B. They also provide you with fast energy which is a must when you need to get going in the morning.
27 Dried Apricots
You can eat them straight out of the bag or cook with them.
28 Tinned Salmon
Tinned salmon is often cheaper than fresh salmon. As it is rich in Omega 3, we should try to add it to our diet.
29 Bell Peppers
There are two reasons why you should buy bell peppers. First of all, they are easy to cook with and can be eaten raw. The other reason is that you can preserve the seeds and start raising your own plants.
Milk is good for you and packed with calcium. Buy full-fat milk and you have all of the nutrients that you will need. Can be used to make pancakes and many other dishes.
Locally produced honey is a must. Add it to your tea or use it as a flavoring when cooking.
Another cheap vegetable that goes a long way in the kitchen. Eat raw or cook with it.
33 Dried Blueberries
Did you know that the nutritional value of blueberries increases when you cook with them? It is true and they taste lovely.
34 Plain Yoghurt
Don’t worry about buying all of the flavored varieties. Buy plain and add your dried fruits to them.
Figs make a fantastic energy food for early mornings or snacking in between meals.
Fruit is really good for you. One of the cheapest fruits you can buy is apples. They will keep for a long time and you can also cook with them.
As we all know, bananas taste great in smoothies. That being said, you can also add them to your traybakes and muffins.
Potatoes are fantastic. Think about the many ways in which you can use them. Great for baking, boiling, and frying.
39 Fresh Mackerel
Fresh mackerel is another fish that is packed with Omega 3. You often see it on special offers in the supermarket. Easy to freeze and you can cook some amazing dishes.
Herbs are not only for flavoring foods. You can also use them to make up your own salads.
41 Cows Liver
Cows liver is good for you as it is packed with vitamin B and iron. You can also make things such as pate and other spreads. Cooks fast which saves on energy.
Chicken is another meat you often see on special offers. Chicken breasts are easy to cook but it is better to buy an entire chicken. That way, you can use the carcass when you make food.
Another fruit you will see on special offer. Eat raw, add the zest to cakes, and don’t forget to make marmalade.
Lemons make a great flavoring. You can also make lemon curd for toast. Making lemon curd only takes a small amount of energy.
45 Bones From the Butcher
You may see bones for sale at your local butcher. Instead of buying ready-made stock, make your own bone broth instead. So much better for you than the high salt store-bought alternatives.
Courgettes or zucchini are a great vegetables that you can do so much with. You can even fry them and turn them into chips instead of using potatoes. Don’t forget to keep seeds back to grow your own during the summer.
47 Winter Greens
Winter greens are a vegetable variety that we forgot about. Of course, that was before we realized how good they taste and how good they are for us. You can cook with winter greens but you can also eat them raw. They are so user-friendly that you will be spoiled for choice.
48 Pak Choi
It is easy to think that this is an expensive vegetable but it is not. When you get them home, pop them in water and they will continue to produce leaves.
Another healthy vegetable that you pick up for a good price is in the supermarket. Put in water when you get home, and it will continue to grow. Once you notice roots appearing, transfer to soil and you have got the start of your own celery crops.
Chilies both add flavor and vitamin C to our diet. Keep the seeds as chili plants are super easy to grow at home.
When you have to keep an eye on the purse strings, these are 50 foods to buy on a budget. Don’t forget that you can preserve the seeds of many of them and start producing your own even if you live in an apartment.