The Most Inexpensive Health Foods on the Market
The cost of healthy eating can seem intimidatingly high sometimes. With buzzy superfoods from flax to acai, goji berries to coconut oil, and cacao to cashew butter costing a pretty penny, eating healthfully can feel like a prohibitive club to which budgeted babes don't belong. But we're here to remind you that's not the case—and that some of the healthiest food in the world comes super-duper cheap. Keep scrolling for the foods to reach for when you're strapped for cash but don't want to compromise health.
Other than ramen (which is definitively not healthy), there's a reason broke college kids rely on rice (more on that later) and beans: They're delightfully inexpensive and insanely healthy. Whether kidney, black, or our favorite kind—big and creamy white cannellini beans—they're packed with protein and fiber, with 0% fat. They make a versatile base to all kinds of bean salads and bowls. A serving costs less than 60 cents, and beans can be bought in bulk or in bags to save even more money than you would on the canned kind.
Kale certainly needs no introduction, but it is nice to remember that despite its popularity and appearance on the menu of every trendy restaurant ever, kale is one of the cheapest produce items at the grocery store. A cup of the nutrient-dense green stuff delivers vitamins K, A, and C; iron; magnesium; and more and costs about 40 cents.
Though it depends on the type of vegetables you get (mixed, green beans, peas, carrots, etc.), a cup of veggies from a freezer bag costs around 25 cents. It's by far the more economical option than fresh veggies, and the bonus is they don't go bad. Use them for stir-fries, soups, egg scrambles, and side dishes.
Watermelon costs around 20 cents a cup and is high in antioxidants and water content, so it's low in calories. Just don't buy the pre-cut version, which spikes the price considerably.
What are your favorite inexpensive healthy foods? Share them in the comments below! And click here for a budget-friendly healthy cookbook.