How to Go Vegan on a Budget: Your Complete Guide

If you’ve scrolled through social media posts for vegan recipes or diets, it may seem like a massive and expensive undertaking. It doesn’t have to be. You can achieve a healthy vegan lifestyle without breaking the bank.

Keep reading for tips on how to go vegan on a budget!

Reasons to Go Vegan 

If you’ve spent your life as an omnivore you may wonder why people go vegan. The answer varies from person to person. Someone may live a vegan lifestyle:

  • To reduce their carbon footprint and produce less waste contributing to climate change
  • To adopt healthier eating habits
  • To help control or reduce your risk for a chronic disease
  • For personal or spiritual reasons
  • In opposition to animal cruelty and industrial farming

Cutting consumption of animal products may help you lower your risk of conditions like type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and lower your cholesterol. Plant-based diets come with a lot of benefits and changes.

What Happens to Your Body When You Go Vegan 

You may find going from omnivore to vegan to be a difficult process. You’ll likely feel the effect of the lifestyle change after a few weeks. You may experience:

  • Changes in weight (either loss or gain)
  • Different food cravings
  • GI discomfort
  • Boosted energy levels
  • Clearer skin

It is important to monitor your nutritional intake and consult your doctor before any drastic dietary changes, as you may need to take supplements (such as B-12 or Iron) when giving up certain foods.

How to Go Vegan on a Budget

According to the USDA, the average American can meet the daily nutritional requirements of fruits and vegetables for less than $3 a day. You can easily save money and meet all of your dietary needs with healthy vegan foods.

Fresh v. Frozen 

Frozen fruits and vegetables are just as healthy as fresh ones. The vegetables in the freezer aisle were picked at peak ripeness, unlike the fresh produce. Fresh produce is picked a few days shy of ripe in order to extend its shelf-life.

Frozen fruits and vegetables are often cheaper and are good additions to meals like stir-fry, soup, and smoothies.

Buy in Bulk 

Many vegan staples can be bought in bulk. This is often cheaper than buying in smaller quantities. Here are some common vegan staples:

  • Legumes (dried beans, chickpeas, lentils, etc.)
  • Tofu
  • Rice and/or quinoa
  • Pasta
  • Nuts
  • Oats
  • Nutritional Yeast
  • Nut Butter

You can use these foods in recipes or eat them on their own. All of these listed also have a long shelf-life, so you can stock up without worrying about expiration dates for a while.

Cook Your Own Food 

Plant-based products, such as burgers, have been added to many fast food and quick service restaurant menus, but this is not the most cost-effective option for a vegan lifestyle (nor a healthy one). Making your own vegan dishes at home will save you money.

Maintaining a Vegan Lifestyle 

Now that you have a better idea of how to go vegan on a budget, you can start incorporating these tips into your life.

Adopting a vegan lifestyle is affordable, sustainable, and one of the best choices you can make for your health!