Prioritizing Nutrition on a Budget

This month we want to focus on healthy eating on a budget. Many of us carry the assumption that we can’t afford to eat healthier. That better quality food is more expensive and harder to find. While that’s not a completely false statement, especially when comparing all the unprocessed ingredients for a quality home-cooked meal to the $5 big box value meal, after all the medical and cosmetic remedies to counteract that “cheaper” option you’ll easily make that up, with interest! However, we don’t want you to feel the need to chase that rabbit. Instead, we want to let you in on some tips and tricks for finding fab food options that aren't going to break the bank, including being PREpared, heading to the grocery store, buying in bulk, including your kids, and how to stay macro-friendly while on a budget.

  1. Make a list and determine which store you need to visit

Deciding which grocery store to shop at can make a difference: “where can I get everything I need,” and “how can I stay on my budget while I'm there?” The answers come from making a list. Before you go anywhere, write down all of the items you need and let it guide you. Check out our recent Aldi Macro-Friendly Food Guide to get an idea of an in-depth grocery list that allows you to separate your items based on produce, pantry/bakery, meat/fish, and deli/dairy. Guides like these will help you decide what you need based on the nutrients you are loading up on that week. Building a list will also help you stay on budget and on track by keeping control of those wandering eyes. 

  1. Buy in bulk and meal prep

Buying in bulk may seem like a small task while staying on budget, but it can go a long way. One of the main pros to buying in bulk will help promote you to meal prep. Meal prepping will ensure that you stay on your plan and don't feel the pressure to eat unhealthy foods on the go. You can secure items for a lower per-unit price, giving a better bang for your buck. A few things you can find cheaper in bulk are rice, avocados, oats, apples, peppers, onions, and more! Buying in bulk of one item also allows you to use it for different recipes! Head on over to Instagram and watch our Sam’s Club haul IGTV and see the types of items you can get and the variety of recipes you can use with them. 


  1. Your family can eat the same thing as you

It’s easy to assume that you need to buy two different types of food when you go shopping, especially when you have kids. However, this is one of the areas where you can save money and time in the kitchen. Rather than cooking three different types of meals, you can start encouraging the prioritization of health by sharing your meals with the family. Another tip is to try to find snack foods that the whole family enjoys, such as veggie straws, nuts, or fun fruits! 

  1. Try frozen or canned vegetables

Buying fresh fruits and vegetables can make a difference in some recipes, but for the most part cans and frozen options provide the same nutritional and culinary value. 

  1. Consider the off-brands

Similar to the frozen and canned veggie conversation, many of your packaged goods have a synonymous option with a smaller price tag as the only difference. Not always, but many of these store brands are prepared by the same manufacturer with the same exact recipe. Switching to these products can save you up to $20 or more per week. Sometimes you will notice a sizable difference, but the cost savings is easily worth giving it a shot!

Staying macro-friendly while on a budget may call for some elimination in buying foods that are processed, but that's the sacrifice you're making when you put your body and budget first. Go to the store thinking about the three categories you need to buy for: Protein, Fats, and Carbohydrates. Here are a few items you can buy at your local Aldi for a discounted price that isn’t processed and fit the three categories of a macro-friendly diet. 

  • Protein products: Italian Chicken Sausage, Simm's Protein Snack, Fermont Frozen Shrimp, and Elevation Whey Protein Blend 
  • Fat Products: Oil, Butter, Avocado, and Nuts
  • Carbohydrate Products: Dried Fruit, Sandwich Skinny, Rice Cakes, and Pretzel Slims

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