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Healthy Eating on a Budget

Healthy Eating on a Budget

July 10, 2017

For seniors on fixed incomes, it can be challenging to afford food after paying rent, utilities, and medical bills. One way to bridge this meal gap is to join a food pantry. These days, more and more food pantries operate like mini grocery stores where clients shop instead of receiving prepacked bags.  Why is this awesome? Because 1) clients are empowered to choose the foods that they like and want and 2) food waste is reduced since clients only take what they will use. 

Here are some tips on how to make the most of what may be offered at your local food pantry:

  1. Stock up on fresh fruits and vegetables – Eaten whole or as additions to dishes, fresh fruits and vegetables taste great and add many healthy nutrients and fiber to every meal. Many food pantries have access to fresh produce now, including our own Squirrel Hill Community Food Pantry. There is also Access availability and vouchers to use at local farmer’s markerts!
  2. Eggs – Perfect scrambled for breakfast or fried on top of a lunch sandwich, breakfast at any time of day never tasted so good.
  3. Canned beans – Not just for homemade chili. Try making chickpea or black bean hummus as a healthy dip for vegetables. Here’s a link to an easy way to make hummus from canned chickpeas! http://www.epicurious.com/expert-advice/how-to-make-hummus-with-any-kind-of-bean-article
  4. Canned vegetables – No need to limit these to side dishes. They shine when added to pasta, rice, tacos, and stir fry.
  5. Pasta and rice – One way to enjoy those fresh and canned vegetables is to add them to pasta and rice.
  6. Peanut butter – On a PB&J sandwich or with apples and bananas, peanut butter is one way to consume more protein.
  7. Tuna – Sandwiches, stir fries, and pasta get a protein and Omega-3 boost from canned tuna.

So don’t think you can’t eat healthy and well in an inexpensive way!