Cheap Healthy Vegetarian Meals: A Practical Guide for People on a Budget

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What can you expect from this vegetarian blog post?

How do you achieve cheap healthy vegetarian meals? You may have heard about vegetarian meals being too expensive or lacking in good nutrition, but this is not always true! In this blog post, we will explore many different vegetarian meal options and discuss what it means to be a vegetarian. We will also provide some tips on how you can cut your grocery bill without sacrificing healthiness.

What is a vegetarian diet?

A vegetarian diet is a lifestyle in which an individual abstains from eating meat. This can mean avoiding beef, chicken, and pork or not consuming any animal products whatsoever. Many people who consume vegetarian diets do so for health reasons such as lowering cholesterol levels or losing weight (either to keep it off after they’ve lost it already or just because they want to be healthier!). Although vegetarianism is a lifestyle, it does not have to be restrictive. There are many vegetarian recipes that include meat alternatives such as tofu or seitan.

cheap vegatarian meals

So, why should you choose a vegetarian diet?

  • Vegetarian diets are lower in saturated fats and cholesterol, which helps protect against heart disease.
  • The vegetarian diet is also high in fiber and low in calories, meaning that it can be a way to lose weight or maintain your current weight without feeling hungry all the time.
  • There’s even some evidence pointing to vegetarianism as a way to combat cancer.
  • Vegetarians can often save money on vegetarian meals since they’re usually lower in cost than meat products and vegetarian items are less likely to go bad before you get the chance to use them up.
  • There are many vegetarian recipes that include your favourite things, like bacon or ham! You just have to swap vegetarian alternatives for them.
  • Vegetarian meals are often healthier because they contain more vegetables and less high fat content than meat dishes, so if you’re looking to eat healthy vegetarian cooking is the way to go!
  • These facts don’t just apply to vegetarians: even omnivores can benefit from eating vegetarian foods on occasion.

Our vegetarian recipes that are also budget friend

Here are our vegetarian meals that we feel like you will love.

Roasted Vegetables

This vegetarian recipe is hearty and filling. It’s made with a variety of different vegetables that are roasted in olive oil, making it healthy for you as well as budget-friendly!

  • Ingredients:
  • Olive Oil
  • Broccoli Florets
  • Carrots
  • Red Bell Pepper Strips
  • Onion Halves (quartered)
  • Garlic Cloves (minced)
  • Salt/Pepper
  • Herb Blend of Choice (optional but recommended)

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Mix the vegetables in a large bowl and coat them with olive oil. Transfer veggies into an 11-by-17 inch baking dish, spreading it out evenly. Season with salt, pepper and other herbs if desired. Roast for about 30 minutes or until the vegetables are browned on top and tender when pierced with a fork near the centre of each one.

sliced tomatoes and onions

Quinoa and Black Bean Bowls

Quinoa and Black Bean Bowls are vegetarian, budget-friendly, and healthy! The beans provide protein while the quinoa adds more vegetarian benefits.

Ingredients:

  • Quinoa (uncooked)
  • Black Beans (canned)
  • Onion (diced)
  • Garlic Cloves minced or pressed through a garlic press
  • Cilantro (chopped)
  • Lime Juice from one lime
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Instructions:

Add a tablespoon of olive oil in a wok or large skillet. Once the pan is warm, add onion for about two minutes stirring occasionally until translucent. Next add black beans and garlic clove(s). Stir with a spatula and cook for two minutes. Add in the quinoa, lime juice, cilantro, salt and pepper to taste. Stir until all ingredients are mixed well together.

Lentil Mushroom Burgers

Lentil Mushroom Burgers are vegetarian, healthy and budget-friendly.

Ingredients:

  • Extra virgin olive oil for cooking the mushrooms in
  • Dried Lentils (uncooked) – about a cup or more if desired. One recipe made six burgers with about two cups of lentils total, but it’s up to you how much you want to cook.
  • Onion (diced)
  • Garlic Cloves minced or pressed through a garlic press
  • White Button Mushrooms – cleaned and diced into bite size pieces, about two cups total in the recipe but it’s up to you how many mushrooms you want for your own vegetarian burgers. We recommend one cup of mushrooms for each vegetarian burger
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Instructions:

In a pan over medium heat, add olive oil. Sautee the onions until translucent- about five minutes or so with stirring every minute. Add in garlic during this time as well – about one teaspoon of minced garlic cloves or two pressed through a garlic press per vegetarian burger. Add the mushrooms and sautee until cooked – about five minutes or so with stirring every minute as well. Once the mushrooms are at your desired level of doneness, add salt and pepper to taste (we recommend one teaspoon of salt per vegetarian burger). Pour in lentils next, mixing them together with a spatula for two minutes. Form vegetarian patties out of the mixture and cook on each side until browned – about five-ten minutes.

Spicy Chickpea Salad with Garlic Cashew Sauce

This vegetarian recipe is healthy and budget-friendly. It’s made with a variety of different vegetables that are roasted in olive oil, making it vegetarian as well as good for you!

Ingredient:

  • Garlic Cashew Sauce Ingredients (to make two servings)
  • Cashews – about one cup or more depending on how much sauce you want
  • Lemon Juice – about a tablespoon or more depending on your desired taste (we recommend one lemon’s worth)
  • Garlic cloves minced or pressed through a garlic press- we recommend two tablespoons of minced garlic per vegetarian serving, but it depends on how much sauce you would like to make. Taste the mixture and add in more garlic if desired
  • Olive Oil

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Mix vegetables in a bowl, coat them with olive oil then transfer them into an 11×17 inch baking pan. Roast the vegetables in the oven for about 20 minutes – flipping them over every five minutes or so with a spatula to ensure even browning.

After roasting veggies, mix cashews in blender until they are finely chopped

Add garlic cloves and lemon juice (we recommend one tablespoon of each) then add in four tablespoons of olive oil. Mix well

Serve vegetarian or vegan sauce over a plate and top with vegetables, as desired.

Curried Cauliflower Soup with Coconut Milk

Curried Cauliflower Soup with Coconut Milk is vegetarian and healthy.

Ingredients:

  • Coconut milk – to taste (about one cup or more depending on how thick you want the soup)
  • Onion diced- about two tablespoons, but it’s up to your desired amount of onion for a vegetarian meal. However, we recommend about a tablespoon of onion per vegetarian serving
  • Garlic minced or pressed through garlic press – we recommend two tablespoons for this vegetable soup, but it’s up to your desired amount. We also recommend adding in one clove of garlic per vegetarian bowl if you want an extra punch of flavor with the curried sauce
  • Ginger root minced or grated – about one tablespoon, but it’s up to your desired amount
  • Curry powder- we recommend two tablespoons of curry per vegetarian serving. However, you can add more or less depending on the level of spiciness that you want in this vegetarian meal
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Instructions:

In a pot, heat coconut milk and salt. Cook over medium-low for about five minutes or until the mixture is heated through

In a separate pan, cook onion with ginger root (we recommend one tablespoon of minced garlic per vegetarian serving), stirring every minute to ensure even browning

Add in curry powder during this time as well – we recommend two tablespoons per vegetarian serving, but you can add more or less depending on the spice that you want in this vegetarian meal. Stir for about ten minutes to ensure even cooking

Add garlic and sautee until cooked – about five minutes with stirring every minute as well. Once the mushrooms are at your desired level of doneness, add salt and pepper to taste

Pour the mixture into a blender and mix until it’s finely chopped. Add to vegetarian soup pot

Return to stove and heat for about five minutes or until heated through

Serve vegetarian soup with coconut milk over top, as desired!

Veggie Fritters

Veggie Fritters are vegetarian and healthy.

Ingredients:

  • Green beans – about one cup or more depending on how many vegetable fritters you want to make, but we recommend four cups per vegetarian serving
  • Onion diced- we recommend two tablespoons of onion for this vegetarian meal, but it’s up to your desired amount of onion for vegetarian fritters. However, we recommend about a tablespoon of onion per vegetarian serving
  • Garlic minced or pressed through garlic press- we recommend two tablespoons of minced garlic per vegetarian cooking session, but it’s up to the desired amount that you want in this vegetarian meal
  • Cauliflower – about one cup or more depending on how many vegetarian fritters you want to make, but we recommend four cups per vegetarian serving
  • Flour- about one cup or more depending on the amount of cauliflower that you’re using. However, for this vegetable dish with vegetarian fritters, we recommend two cups of flour mixed with two tablespoons of baking powder and a pinch of salt per vegetarian cooking session
  • Olive oil – about one cup

Instructions:

In a pot, heat two cups of water and add the cauliflower to boiling water for about five minutes or until cooked through

While this is happening in another pan, cook onion with garlic (we recommend two tablespoons of minced garlic per vegetarian cooking session) – about ten minutes of cooking with stirring every minute

Add green beans during this time and saute until cooked- we recommend four cups per vegetarian serving, but it is up to your desired amount. Once the vegetables are at your desired level of doneness, add salt and pepper to taste

In a separate bowl, mix flour (about two cups or more depending on how many vegetarian fritters you want) with baking powder and a pinch of salt

In another pan, heat one cup of olive oil over medium-high heat

Once the flour mixture is ready to go into the skillet, add green beans and cauliflower to vegetables in separate bowl. Using two tablespoons at a time, add flour mixture to skillet and let cook for about five minutes or until vegetarian fritters are cooked through

Serve vegetarian fritters with coconut milk over top, as desired!

brown bread on black ceramic plate

Tofu Scramble Breakfast Burrito

Tofu Scramble Breakfast Burrito vegetarian and healthy.

Ingredients:

  • Scrambled tofu- about a cup or more depending on the amount of vegetarian breakfast burritos that you want to make, but we recommend eight ounces for each vegetarian serving. However, this is up to your desired level of scrambled tofu in vegetarian breakfast burritos
  • Avocado- about one cup or more depending on the vegetarian breakfast burrito that you want to make, but we recommend two tablespoons for each vegetarian serving. However, this is up to your desired level of avocado in vegetarian breakfast burritos
  • Bread crumbs (optional)- about a tablespoon per vegetarian cooking session

Instructions:

In a pot, heat two cups of water and add cauliflower (about four cups or more depending on how many vegetarian breakfast burritos you want) and cook for about five minutes or until cooked through. Once done cooking, drain excess water from cauliflower

In a separate bowl, mix bread crumbs with vegetarian eggs (about two tablespoons per vegetarian cooking session) and scramble together to form scrambled egg mixture. Once the mixture is done scrambling, add salt and pepper to taste

In another pan over medium-high heat, saute tofu for about five minutes or until browned on all sides

Once sauteed, add vegetarian eggs to the same pan and let cook for about two minutes or until egg is cooked on all sides

In a warm tortilla wrap, place scrambled tofu mixture in center of corn tortilla. Add avocado (about one tablespoon per vegetarian serving) and then fold over the top half of the burrito so that the vegetarian egg is on the inside of the tortilla

Serve with coconut milk over top if desired!

Roasted Root Vegetable Soup

Ingredients:

  • Onions- about two cups per vegetarian cooking session, but this is up to your desired amount of onions in the vegetarian soup. We recommend one tablespoon for each vegetarian serving, however
  • Potatoes (or sweet potatoes)- about four cups or more depending on how many vegetarian servings you want, but we recommend three quarters of a cup for each vegetarian serving. However, this is up to your desired level of potatoes
  • Carrots- about two cups per vegetarian cooking session, but this is up to your desired amount of carrots in the vegetarian soup. We recommend one tablespoon for each vegetarian serving, however
  • Celery- about a cup per vegetarian cooking session, but it’s up to the vegetarian soup that you want. We recommend two tablespoons for each vegetarian serving, but this is up to your desired amount
  • Onion powder- about a tablespoon or more depending on how much onion flavor you want in the vegetarian soup

Instructions:

In one pan over medium heat, saute onions (about four cups or less depending on vegetarian servings) for about five minutes

In another pan over medium-high heat, saute potatoes (or sweet potatoes) and carrots (about four cups or less depending on vegetarian servings). Let cook until vegetables are tender. Add celery to the same pot as well

Once onions have cooked through in one pan, add salt, pepper, onion powder and vegetarian chicken broth to the mix. Let cook for about five minutes or until vegetables are tender

Once all of that is done cooking through in one pan, add celery and let simmer

In another pot over medium heat, add potatoes (or sweet potatoes) with carrots (about two cups per vegetarian cooking session). Once vegetables are tender, add vegetarian chicken broth and let simmer for about five minutes

Add vegetarian chicken broth to the potatoes (or sweet potatoes) with carrots mix. Let it cook through for another two minutes or until vegetables are cooked

In a bowl, combine roasted root vegetable soup water from one pan with vegetarian onion mixture from other pot. Mix ingredients together

Add salt, pepper and vegetarian chicken broth to taste

Serve with bread or over pasta. Enjoy!

two sauces topped with seeds

Vegetable Soup with Rice Noodles

Ingredients:

  • Rice noodles- about two cups per vegetarian cooking session, but this is up to your desired amount of rice noodles in the vegetarian soup. We recommend one tablespoon for each vegetarian serving, however
  • Zucchini- about six or more depending on how many vegetarian servings you want
  • Salt and pepper- to taste preference

Instructions:

In one pot over medium heat, add zucchini and vegetarian chicken broth. Let simmer for about five minutes or until vegetables are tender

Add salt and pepper to taste preference

In another pot over high heat, boil water then cook rice noodles in boiling water once beginning to soften. Drain the noodles with a strainer

In another pot over medium heat, add vegetarian onion with vegetable broth. Let simmer for about five minutes or until vegetables are tender

Add salt and pepper to taste preference

Once all of the zucchini has cooked through in one pan, add rice noodles into the vegetarian sauce mix as well as some water if necessary to make it more liquid. Let the vegetarian soup cook through for about two minutes

Add salt and pepper to taste preference

Serve with rice noodles, vegetarian chicken broth or vegetarian sauce mix as well as bread on the side if you won’t- enjoy!

Now you know how to make your main meal, how about pudding?

Final thoughts

Vegetarian meals are healthy and vegetarian dishes can be inexpensive. This blog provides a few recipes that will keep your food budget in check while eating well! Whether you’re looking for a vegetarian soup with noodles or vegetarian potato salad, these cheap vegetarian options have got you covered. Let us know if there’s any other information or help we can provide to make this post even better.

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