I love food and I love to eat.
I also am on a budget and although I do get a free meal from work, I like to cook some things myself. My mother taught me how to spend frugally and get the most bang for my buck. Watching her cook for us when I was young showed me how to make delicious, simple food.
When I went vegan, I ate tons of peanut butter and jelly. I still do this, but I also know how to cook which I am proud to say I now eat more nutritiously.
At the end of the day, I eat essentially similar things and use spices or sauces to change it up. However, if I am being honest, I could eat the same thing every day.
Breakfast: grain (with milk)+peanut butter, fruit
examples of grains: oatmeal, cornflakes, mini-wheats, raisin bran, bagels, bread, WAFFLES
Lunch: Salad/Sandwich, pickle/chips
example salad: bead of spinach or lettuce, tofu or beans, sprouts, tomatoes, peas, dressing
example sandwich: ciabatta bread, seitan/hummus, lettuce, tomato, cheese/avocado, onions
Dinner: Grain+bean+sauce, steamed veggies
example: white rice, chick peas, tahini/avocado salsa/sauce (flavored with nutritional yeast, s/p)
Snack: granola bar+peanut butter
There are a few things I do not do, which is simply because I just haven’t added them into my budget. The pros of these things aren’t there for me:
Superfoods (I use protein powder very sparingly and it was sent to me)
Organic (I think eating fresh fruits and veggies is important, if I find myself in a financially enough secure position, I will buy organic, but right now I’m not concerned)
Out of Season Produce (no.)
Zoodles (not enough calories for the amount they cost)
Gluten-free (I am not celiac, and often these products are more expensive, so I choose not to buy them)
Cauliflower rice (I prefer my white rice just fine, and again, not enough calories for me)
Now, saying that I do not buy these things regularly does not mean I will not eat them nor never buy them. I am not black and white with foods as long as they’re vegan. For example, if I go to a cafe or restaurant and they put maca powder or spirulina in my smoothie, I will gladly take it. I also am always up for trying different kinds of pasta like black bean or chickpea, but I do not buy them frequently.
I have a few resources for all those people who want to start making some of their own food, but also mind their budget:
No Meat Athlete 5 Sauce System <—I USE THIS SO MUCH!