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FRENCHIFAL SparkPoints: (144,716)
Fitness Minutes: (134,086)
Posts: 2,618
8/1/12 4:22 P

I'm a vegetarian on a budget cooking for one, and I've started "group batch cooking" to make sure I stay on track.

So I will buy basil, pine nuts, lemons, mushrooms, tomatoes, and mozzarella (or soy substitute) and make stuffed mushrooms, pasta, and bruschetta all at once, and eat that all week. If you make your own marinara or lasagna, it will freeze beautifully...and so will pesto.

Or I buy cilantro, tomatoes, peppers, black beans, and make stuffed bell peppers, black bean burgers, and salsa. Black bean burgers freeze and reheat really well, and you can jar or even freeze the salsa.

It takes extra planning, but you can search SP recipes by ingredient I think. Just group them together, find freezer-friendly recipes and recipes that use the same ingredients, and you can limit the # of ingredients you'll be buying every week! Then you can try all new foods the next week emoticon

Edited by: FRENCHIFAL at: 8/1/2012 (16:23)
PEACHES058097 SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (640)
Posts: 14
8/1/12 3:57 P

Thanks guys, these are awesome ideas!

CLRWILLIAMS25 SparkPoints: (34,625)
Fitness Minutes: (35,554)
Posts: 1,091
8/1/12 2:37 P

the broccoli fritter recipe looks awesome!

ALLICIAC SparkPoints: (24,321)
Fitness Minutes: (6,253)
Posts: 146
8/1/12 12:42 P

SPOORK, I can't believe one of the recipes you posted is from my old blog! Haha. I did broke-ass vegan for awhile, but most of the time I forget it ever existed.

ANARIE Posts: 13,205
8/1/12 10:07 A

By the way, one of the fastest ways to save money and still eat very interesting things is to find a store that sells spices in bulk jars. If you need a teaspoon of garam masala or Chinese 5-spice powder or fennel seeds or whatever, you can buy one teaspoon for a nickel instead of having to get a whole jar. You can try 100 spices for the price of one jar that way!

SPOORK Posts: 1,193
8/1/12 9:20 A

Vegetarian chili and stews (you can add TVP for more protein)
Bean salads
Bean and lentil dishes
Burritos (Whatever you have on hand - Ex. quinoa or rice, beans, salsa, onions, zucchini, corn, hot sauce, hot peppers, avocado, etc. put into a wrap and pan fried or baked)

Here are some of my favorite recipes:

Corn and Edamame Sesame Salad:

Snobby Joes (lentil sloppy joes):

Red Bean and Rice Soup (I use quinoa instead of rice):


Bruschetta Stuffed Mushrooms (I skip the flax seed):

Hot Sauce Glazed Tempeh (I bake broccoli or corn with the tempeh and cover it with the sauce):

Chickpea cutlets (~26g protein each):

Pasta and Edamame Pesto

Broccoli Fritters:

Chickpea Salad (I add cucumbers and tomatoes, and add less oil)

Spinach and Mushroom Quesadilla (I use olive oil instead of butter, less cheese, Cheddar or Pepper Jack, more spinach, add salsa, and sautee everything in a normal pan)

ALXM530 SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (2,062)
Posts: 37
8/1/12 9:01 A

Here is a great article about saving money and eating a plant-strong diet!
There is a list of food combos that taste good together and are pretty cheap (sweet potatoes with beans, veggies and rice, etc.).

KEDOGN Posts: 80
7/31/12 3:06 P

This past Saturday I made a lentil chili for my wife and I that not only tasted awesome, but was cheap and very easy to make. I used 2#'s of dried lentils, with some carrots, celery, onions, crushed tomatoes & I seasoned it with some chili powder, garlic & red pepper flakes. I served it, 1 cup worth, over 1/4 cup of long grain brown rice. For not much $$ I made enough for us both to have a few meals off of it, plus I vac-packed 4 bags, each consisting of 4 servings for future use. :) All totaled, that cost me just under $10 for enough for 20 meals worth.

KBALLARD Posts: 98
7/31/12 1:58 P

A vegetarian diet is actually pretty cheap it just really takes a lot of prep work. I dont eat soy products of any kind, though. I stock up on canned beans (pinto, black, chick peas) and tomatoes. I also stock up on dried beans, rice, whole grain pasta and other grains. You can make a meal with any of these combined items. When you have a chance, cook up several servings at once (like a whole bag of beans or rice) and freeze some and refrigerate some. I also stock up on fresh fruits and veggies when they're in season and on sale. I cut up and freeze most of it and eat fresh for a few days. I'm constantly feeding my freezer so I always have something pretty quick to make. Starting a vegetable garden is a good cheap way to get veggies if you have time. Gardening is also great exercise!

RADIOTIKSPARK1 SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (2,813)
Posts: 638
7/31/12 1:28 P

Take a trip to the library...there are TONS of books on being a budget vegetarian. Specifically cookbooks meant for students etc are a good place to start. Here is one I found online



ANARIE Posts: 13,205
7/31/12 1:03 P

Look for a store brand of tofu. It can be as little as 99 cents for a 12-oz package, and you can make something very nice by marinating it in any sauce you have on hand or have a recipe for. Lentils are also extremely cheap, cook fast, and have tons of fiber along with the protein. Any recipe website will have several lentil soup recipes, most of which have very short ingredient lists.

KFWOHLFORD SparkPoints: (3,013)
Fitness Minutes: (2,581)
Posts: 729
7/31/12 12:38 P

-Look for some fruits and veggies in bulk, such as apples, oranges, grapefruit, potatoes, etc. Buying a big bag of something that keeps for awhile will be cheaper in the long run.

-Choose things like tofu, eggs, and beans over pre-made fake meat products when possible. They are less processed, and also usually cheaper.

-Homemade chilli is pretty cheap

-Make a large dish of something that has about 6 servings, and eat it for lunch or dinner throughout the week. I have some suggestions if you're interested.

-Frozen veggies keep well and are usually cheaper than fresh ones. Peas and green beans taste just as good frozen, once cooked.

PEACHES058097 SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (640)
Posts: 14
7/31/12 12:28 P

Ok so I am having a hard time coming up with new meals that are cheap, don't include meat but still have enough protein and are nutritional. I have been looking at vegetarian recipes but they all seem to have too many ingredients; with my budget it's not entirely feasible... Suggestions?

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