Need some cheap vegan meals that will help keep your wallet full and tastebuds happy? I've got you covered with these budget-friendly vegan recipes!
Are you struggling to put cheap vegan meals on the table, or worried that if you start eating a plant-based or vegan diet it will become too expensive?
Feeding a family on a tight budget isn't easy no matter which dietary preferences you have, but luckily vegan staples like beans, legumes, grains, potatoes, root vegetables, pasta, rice, oats, flour, and seasonal fruits are some of the most budget-friendly foods available at the grocery store. By building your meals around vegan food like this, you can create satisfying, tasty meals on a budget much more easily.
In this post: Everything you need for budget-friendly vegan meals:
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Tips For Saving Money On Groceries
Here are some tips for saving money on your groceries:
- Shop seasonally.
- Don't go grocery shopping when you're hungry.
- Meal plan and make a list so you don’t buy more food than you actually need.
- Buy foods that last a long time (like pasta, dried beans, root vegetables, etc) in bulk or when they are on sale.
- Frozen fruits and vegetables are just as nutritious as fresh veggies and tend to be cheaper, so incorporate them into your meals more.
- Buy dried beans and cook them yourself rather than buying canned beans. An Instant Pot is really handy for this. You don't even need to soak them and it cooks so fast.
- Bake your own bread and treats instead of buying them. I have so many recipes for vegan baked goods!
- Don’t shop when you are hungry.
- Batch cook things like soups, stews, and chili and freeze leftovers for another day or have them for lunch.
- Buy less packaged convenience foods.
- Check grocery store flyers, ads, and online to see what’s on sale and where before you go shopping.
- Check the marked-down/reduced items in the produce department. Slightly past their best vegetables are still great for stews and soups and overripe bananas are perfect for freezing to make Healthy Banana Bread or Easy Banana Peanut Butter Ice Cream Bars. Other overripe fruits are great for making smoothies, and adding to cakes, muffins, crisps, and crumbles, and veggies that are a little old, battered, or bruised are great for soups.
- Make vegetable broth/stock from your veggie scraps (see below).
Make Veggie Scrap Stock
As well as shopping and cooking smart, you can recycle veggie scraps that might otherwise get thrown out or composted.
I keep all of my veggie scraps like peel and offcuts in a container in the freezer. When it's full I tip it into a large pan, add enough water to cover it along with some salt and pepper and whatever dried herbs I've got, then bring it to a boil and simmer for an hour or two.
Drain and you've got loads of practically free vegetable stock. Pour into freezer-safe containers and freeze. I've got some old yogurt pots that I reuse again and again.
Defrost overnight in the fridge, or pop it in the microwave to defrost in a hurry and use it in your favourite recipes. Now you can get even better value out of your vegetables and make extra cheap vegan meals. It's especially good for soups and stews.
Budget-Friendly Vegan Recipes
Here are some easy, cheap vegan meal ideas with something to suit all tastes. Because a satisfyingly good vegan meal doesn't have to break the bank!
Vegan Vegetable Soup
Lentil Shepherd's Pie
Cherry Tomato Sauce
Vegan Potato Soup
Bubble & Squeak
Oven-Baked Garlic Mushroom Rice
Vegan Chicken Breasts
Vegan Leek & Potato Soup
Slow Cooker Black Beans
Chickpea Curry Soup
Kidney Bean Burgers
Easy Individual Mushroom Pies
Vegan Pea Soup
Easy Cheese Sauce
Green Bean Potato Curry
Tomato Pasta Bake
One-Pot Spicy Vegetable Rice
Chard Stir Fry
I hope this roundup of cheap vegan meals helps you to put a comforting, filling, and super delicious dinner on the table for your family with as little stress as possible. Remember, you got this!
Chris Whitesman says
I’ve been using some of your recipes, since we used your meatloaf recipe for lunch on Christmas Day. Really impressed by the thoughtfulness of your notes and information. A huge thank you! I’m Australian, so can’t always find products others might, but your info about options and substitutes is most helpful.
Melanie McDonald says
Thanks so much Chris. I'm really pleased you're finding the info helpful!
Thank you so much, I really appreciate this. I am so happy I found your website
I am so glad I found your site. I am very, very new to plant based cooking.... Around a week so far. I am doing this mainly for my health and needed some simple, inexpensive and tantalizing dishes to keep me on track. Plus, making food to entice my Hubby to join me in this journey is important! I am excited to try these recipes!
A Virtual Vegan says
Glad you found me Angie. I hope you enjoy the recipes!
I am building a list of dishes my family enjoys, thank you for your suggestions.
Hello Mel: Thank you very much for these easy to cook and delicious recipes. I'm going to start with cherry tomato sauce, then vegan potato soup, and then green bean potato curry per day for dinner. Sam from San Francisco
A Virtual Vegan says
You're welcome Sam. I hope you enjoy them!