50 Cheap and Healthy Meals to Stay Within Your Budget

By Raven Stewart / Updated: Mar 22, 2020 / 0 Comments / Posted in Big Life on a Small Budget

Inexpensive Healthy Meals to Try Right Now
Do you know it is possible to eat healthy and tasty food and yet stay within your budget? Most of the time when well-flavored food is mentioned, the first thing that comes in mind is digging deeper into the pocket or breaking the bank, but it doesn’t have to be this way. Taking out an instant payday loan to cover your meal is never a good idea, because healthy food may be cheap as well.

Some recipes are healthy, affordable, easy to make and ingredients readily available; you may even have some of the recipes in your collection at home.

In this sense we agree with what Karista Bennett, a renowned cooking guru, says, “Food should not only satisfy hunger, but it should also feed the soul, nourish the body and delight the senses.”

Let’s dive into these recipes together of healthy meals on a budget together!

Meals for Meat-Eaters

1. Grilled Lemon Pepper Chicken

Best Grilled Lemon Pepper Chicken as a Healthy Budget Meal

Chicken is a healthier and cheaper source of protein. It’s low in calories and cholesterol. With readily available lemon and pepper in the market and a mix of garlic powder, cumin, coriander, paprika, pepper, and olive oil, this meal becomes exquisite and, at the same time, budget-friendly.

2. Spicy Tuna Guacamole Bowls

This dish is designed for people who appreciate mixes of flavor, texture, and vitamin dose in every bite. This bowl combines such qualities as the super-fresh flavor of cucumbers, cilantro, and creamy guacamole, sweet carrots, spicy hot sauce, edamame, and finally, a healthy dose of protein thanks to tuna shreds.

3. Easy Oven Fajitas

In case if you’re looking for new food experiences, a sweet smoke flavor of traditional griddle fajitas is the best choice for your taste buds. It can be prepared just within 40 minutes – not much for such a masterpiece.

4. Greek Turkey Burgers

It’s an easy and quick way to get tons of color, goodness, and flavor. This burger includes so many goodies, such as spinach, lemon, feta, garlic, and sweet thick Greek yogurt, that it can be considered as an almost half-veggie burger.

5. Mini Black Bean Turkey Burgers

Using a mix of chili powder, garlic, cumin, and cayenne to flavor the beans and meat, and further adding some green onion slices for color and texture – that’s the key for getting an insanely delicious black bean turkey burger. The most important thing that these burgers are being cooked as fast as possible! Same fast just a fast cash loan can be taken out.

6. Smoked Sausages and Rice Skillet

Smoked Sausages and Rice Skillet as a Kind of Cheap Healthy Meals
A meal that doesn’t long to prepare and is mouth-watering. You may also prefer to use andouille sausages instead of smoked ones as they have a good flavor as they have some delicious spices in them.

7. Classic Beef and Tomato Macaroni Soup

The best way to warm you up in cold weather is to make this soup. This dish is full of various vitamins and proteins. One bowl of such soup can become a better decision than taking pills in case if you feel sick and weak.

8. South West Chicken

It sounds like some good old soul food. But in fact, it’s cheap healthy food! A rich flavor of chicken and aromatic Jasmine rice – this is what you need to choose for a special dinner.

9. Cheesy Chicken Broccoli and Rice Casserole

Casseroles are the best choice for you in case if you’re looking to save money with your dinner recipes. It’s very comfortable that casseroles can be created out of almost anything imaginable. The key is to know what ingredients you should mix with them. For example, rice and chicken that totally make them extra delicious.

10. Easy Tuna Patties

A great easy dinner. Especially for people who want to try something new. The secret is hiding in a little spritz of lemon and a side salad or some fresh rice. Just mix it and get the best cheap healthy meal on your table!

11. Beef and Vegetable Hot Pot

Best Beef and Vegetables Hot Pot Recipe on a Budget
With its mix of snow peas, mushrooms, soy sauce, and chili sauce is a fast meal with less complication that is healthy and light on the body, takes a short time to prepare, mouth-watering, and it’s a meal once tasted you would want to eat more often. It can also be an excellent meal to make for when you have dinner or lunch guests.

12. Mexicali Tostadas

These delicious Mexican tostadas can be made either with or without meat. And even if you’d like to cook it with meat – it’s still one of the healthy cheap meals you can consider, being on any type of budget. Add some beans, veggies, spices, and cheese – and here it is!

13. Macaroni and Cheese with Cauliflower and Tuna

We all know that mac and beef is one of the most famous recipes. But if you want to try something exciting and new – then try to combine mac with tuna! It’s absolutely cheaper than beef and can be just as filling with a new twist on flavor.

14. Beef Wellingtons

Although it’s meat, this dish is one of the existing cheap and healthy meals. All you need are basic ingredients like puff pastry, which you can find at almost any convenient store and, of course, beef meet.

15. Tilapia Fillets

It’s the best cheap meal option for you if you adore meat and look for inexpensive, healthy meals as a solution to dinner. This restaurant-quality tilapia fillet recipe relies on spices you’re likely to have on hand to deliver big flavor.

16. Chicken and Avocado Sushi

Chicken and Avocado Sushi is Cheap Healthy Food
It is a unique mix of sushi rice and brown rice, soy sauce, vinegar, grated carrots, and chicken breasts. The exquisite taste of this meal will leave the memories on the eater’s mouth.

17. Elegant Pork Marsala

The basic ingredients are cheap and easy to find in any food store: wine, mushrooms, garlic, and pork meat. It’s an excellent idea for a romantic dinner as all these ingredients create a unique flavor and add incredible elegance to the meal.

18. Italian Sausage-Stuffed Zucchini

It’s hard to force somebody to eat vegetables when he likes unhealthy food. So, the best option is to make stuffed veggies using the pizza flavors! This meal can be fully meatless, but if you’re a meat lover, so it’s better to include some sausage.

19. Chicken Florentine Meatballs

These tender meatballs are usually served over squash and a chunky, mushroom-tomato sauce, which makes them become a fantastic meal for dinner.

20. Buttery Grilled Shrimp

These shrimps are great with steak, but for a special occasion, brush the sauce on lobster tails and grill. Yummy!

21. Tomato Spinach Shrimp Pasta

Tomato Spinach Shrimp Pasta is a Good Idea for Inexpensive Healthy Meals
Ready in 30 minutes this meal is delicious, healthy and light. It is budget friendly and mouthwatering. With a mix of basil, lemon juice and lemon peel this meal full of flavor and with quite cheap ingredients.

22. Roast Pork with Apples & Onions

Do you know what complements the roast pork the best? Yes, the sweetness of the apples and onions. This meal can become your favorite dish right after the first bite of its crisp skin.

23. Asparagus Ham Dinner

It’s a great combination of different flavors and textures. Asparagus, pasta, tomato, and chunks of ham definitely complement each other.

24. Barbecue Pork Tacos and Apple Slaw

These pork tacos are very easy to make. Despite the fact that pork is considered one of the heaviest types of meat, this dish is pretty light on the stomach. The combination of pork tacos and apple slaw could be definitely become a gift for your taste buds!

25. Andouille Sausages with Spices

A meal that doesn’t long to prepare and is mouth-watering. While many food lovers prefer smoked sausages, you might opt for andouille sausages instead of smoked ones as they have a good flavor as they have some delicious spices in them.

Meals for Vegetarians

26. Fried Brown Rice With Eggs and Vegetables

Fried Rice With Eggs and Vegetables is one of Healthy Budget Meals
This meal is simple and very easy to prepare, and yet health packed. Brown rice is a whole grain and is a good source of fiber, vitamins, and minerals. It is also readily available and pocket-friendly. Eggs are rich in high-quality proteins and vitamins D, B6, B12 and minerals while vegetables are loaded with vitamins.

27. Barley Pilaf and Vegetables

This meal is considered as one of cheap, easy meals on a budget, and yet health packed. It has an impressive and healthy amount of soluble fiber, and it can lower cholesterol as well. You are welcome to add other fresh veggies and get a healthy and colorful dish.

28. Baked Goat Cheese with Honey

It is a salty, tangy, and sweet appetizer that is easy and fast to prepare. You only need to bake goat cheese for about 15 minutes in a 375 °F until golden and heated through. And then, drizzle honey on warm goat cheese and add some fresh thyme leaves, sea salt, olive oil & fresh cracked pepper.

Is your honey crystallized? Don’t throw the sweet stuff away, as crystallized honey can have a richer taste. Just put the unsealed plastic or glass jar in a bath of warm water for about ten minutes to help dissolve the crystals and put the honey to work!

29. Quiche

The perfect breakfast at dinner time meal! There are a lot of different recipes for cooking quiche. And one of the most delicious recipe ideas is a quiche with mushrooms and potatoes.

30. Broccoli Cheese Soup

This kind of soup was designed for those who adore cheese and hate soups. It’s a perfect combination of cheese flavor and different veggie tastes.

31. Sweet Potato, Chickpeas With Spinach Curry

Sweet Potato Chickpeas With Spinach Curry are Cheap Easy Food on a Budget
It’s so easy to prepare since it takes roughly an hour to have it done. Also, if prepared in bulk can be frozen for later consumption. All the above are well packed with vitamins, fiber and have minerals that support the immune system.

32. Vegetarian Spaghetti

One of the best ways to feed the whole family on a budget. This meal doesn’t include any meat, but it doesn’t mean that spaghetti is tasteless without meat! Just add some veggies and various spices, and voila!

33. Cheese Bomb Bread

This meal was designed for people who love sandwiches, but they are tired of its usual taste. Crunchy bread and hot cheese are the best way to change a routine taste of everyday sandwiches.

34. Curried Chickpeas with Spinach

It is especially good for when you need a quick fix, but healthy dine. It’s packed with flavor and nutrients, and it is absolutely gluten-free. Also, these chickpeas freeze great.

35. Quinoa Lasagna Casserole

Even if it looks expensive and fancy – trust us, it isn’t. It’s totally meatless and includes only tomatoes, mushrooms, zucchini, spices, and a lot of delicious grilled cheese. This meal is really easy to make, and it tastes as good as possible!

36. Peanut Butter Pancakes

Peanut Butter Pancakes are a great Idea for Healthy Budget Meals
It’s easy to make as peanut butter becomes just an addition to the usual pancake ingredients. Served with an apple slice, it becomes a meal that is highly nutritious and one of the really inexpensive healthy meals without necessarily breaking into the bank. The amazing taste of peanut butter combined with apples brings in a whole new flavor of pancakes.

37. Vegetable Stew and Moroccan Lentil

That’s the best type of vegan cheap healthy food. It has a lot of flavor and texture, and also, it’s filled with fiber and anti-inflammatory, warm, intoxicating spices. It’s a perfect choice for cold Autumn nights.

38. Vegetable Soup with Tofu

One of the lightest soups for the stomach. However, it’s full of different flavors that lead this soup taste to the apogee of satisfaction.

39. Black Beans and Sweet Potatoes

This dinner idea is as good for your wallet as for your health. It looks filling and tastes amazing. As a lunch or dinner option, this meal is definitely worth a try.

40. Garlic Noodles

People who don’t want to spend loads of money at different restaurants and cafes, but they still love noodles – this recipe is for you! Now you can make your own version of favorite noodles at home. It also doesn’t eat a big hole in your grocery budget, so this meal is definitely on the list of the best healthy budget meals.

41. Shakshuka

Shakshuka as one of Ideas for Healthy Meals on a Budget
Shakshuka must be one of the cheapest mouth-watering meals. Only baked eggs cooked in tomato sauce and added spices according to one’s preference. Although it’s a scarce meal hardly mentioned it is a super-meal with a fantastic taste and flavor.

42. Spinach with Chickpeas

Remember that chickpeas are one of the cheapest dinner options, and it can be incorporated with a lot of things. It’s not necessary to combine it with meat. Especially if you’re looking for cheap healthy meals. Just add any veggies you want, and you will get a delicious dish for your dinner!

43. Chinese Egg Noodles

Making your own dish is better than ordering it somewhere for a lot of money. It’s not too hard, and it doesn’t take too much time to prepare the meal. Just get a bit creative and cook it with soul.

44. Easy Potato Soup

This potato-based soup can brighten up your dinner. It’s totally delicious and super satisfying. Also, it takes only 20 minutes to cook. So, if you’re in a hurry or extremely hungry – consider this recipe idea.

45. Three Bean Casserole

When you’re planning your list of healthy meals on a budget, you just can’t leave out the casseroles. Except for their low price, they’re also great time savers and let you take and remain the same delicious after reheating.

46. Egg Toast With Avocado

Egg Toast With Avocado is a Kind of Cheap Healthy Food
This meal is filling, easy to make and healthy. It is good especially when you feel like taking breakfast at dinner time. It’s also a combination loaded with vitamins and proteins and heart-healthy fats. It is especially good for when you need a quick fix, but healthy dine.
But when you need to fix quickly your financial issues, a quick cash loan can be a handy solution.

47. Crunchy Fried Rice

This delicious and filling meal is the best choice for you in case if you’re on a budget. Just add the right ingredients that are the same cheap and do not cost a ton of money.

48. Easy Bean Soup

First of all, beans are an incredible source of complex carbs, fiber, and protein. A combination of beans and enhancing spices can become a gift for your taste buds. It’s effortless to make and doesn’t require to spend a lot of money at all.

49. Veggie Cheesy Bread

This exciting and unusual recipe can be filling even without adding any meat. It’s definitely should be on your list if you’re looking for cheap, healthy and quick meals. Just choose your favorite type of bread (let it be pita or naan, for example) and make it your own.

50. Sweet Potato Zoodle Bowl

In case if you’re looking for a fantastic flavor explosion in your mouth – this sweet potato zoodle bowl is the best choice for you! Consider that it’s also a perfect cheap meal idea for colder evenings.

Final Thoughts

Eating good and tasty food on a low budget is possible without necessarily sacrificing on the flavor. You just have to be creative, adventurous willing to learn and try out new and different ways of preparing meals in your kitchen. As much as classic and traditional is good, a unique style and idea now and then will bring life into your dining table. We can’t help to cite Martha Stewart when she says that “You should feel great about cooking a good meal for your family.”

Karista Bennett Photo
Karista Bennett (@KaristasKitchen) is a recipe developer, author, and photographer based in Oregon’s Willamette Valley. She also works as a private chef at her own Kitchen (@Karista’s Kitchen) and as a IACP award-winning PCC Cooks Instructor at the Culinary School in Seattle.
Martha Stewart Photo
Martha Stewart (@MarthaStewart) is an American retail executive, businesswoman, writer, TV personality. She successfully runs themarthablog.com and hosts cooking TV shows like From Martha’s Kitchen, Martha bakes and several others.
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