How to Eat Healthy on a Budget

The following Family & Consumer Sciences articles printed in the 2020 Summer edition of the Oldham County Extension Newsletter.

eating healthy on a budget

8 Simple Ways to Eat Healthy on a Budget

Buy whole foods. Processed foods are more expensive and less nutritious than unprocessed foods. Whole foods give you more control over the ingredients and you can also buy them in larger quantities.

Buy cheaper cuts of meat. Try less expensive cuts of meat and use different cooking methods to make tougher cuts tender and juicy. Buy large, inexpensive cuts to use in several different meals during the week.

Prepare your own food. Preparing your own food allows for total control over the ingredients and is much cheaper than buying food out. Eat before leaving for work or going out. Take food with you to school or to work.

Stick to your grocery list. Avoid impulse buying by making a grocery list and sticking to it. Don’t shop when you’re hungry and go to the grocery store alone. This will help you stick to your list as well.

Plan your meals ahead. Plan out meals for the week and list all the foods you need to buy. Check your fridge and cabinets to see what you already have and buy only what you’re sure you’ll use.

Buy frozen fruits and veggies. These are often half the price of fresh produce, you can buy them in bulk to save more, are available all year ’round and are sold in large bags. Frozen fruits and veggies are just as or even more nutritious than their fresh counterparts, if frozen right away when they’re picked.

Buy generic foods. Generic foods taste just the same and are of the same quality as brand name foods. The difference is that they are much cheaper.

Buy in bulk. Foods like grains, millet, barley, rice, beans, some nuts and oats are available in bulk and are easy to stockpile. Find them on sale and buy as much as you can afford, making sure you’re actually going to use them.

healthy apple coleslaw recipe

Apple Coleslaw Recipe

This low-calorie, low-sodium apple coleslaw recipe is both healthy and budget-friendly!

Makes 12 servings.
Serving size: 1/2 cup
Cost per recipe: $3.38
Cost per serving: $0.28


  • 2 apples (1 red, 1 green), cored and chopped
  • 1/2 head of green cabbage, shredded (3 cups)
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 3/4 cup low fat vanilla yogurt
  • Optional: raisins or grapes


  1. Mix yogurt and honey in a large bowl.
  2. Add other ingredients, mix together lightly.

Nutrition facts per serving: 45 calories, 0 g fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 25 mg sodium, 10 g carbohydrate, 2 g fiber, 7 g sugar, 1 g protein

Recipe Source: Debra Cotterill, Director of Kentucky Extension Nutrition Education Program

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