Healthy Budget, Healthy Eating

Student Editor: Angela P.

Being a teenager can be a tough time! You are just at that time when you are starting to become independent and are craving some responsibility that comes with being an adult. One of the easiest things to take control of is deciding what you want to eat! Think about it, your guardian would be so happy to not have to cook for you anymore, and at the same time, you make yourself seem responsible! Eating a healthy, balanced diet does not need to break your bank. It can be a bit difficult to figure out how to do this, so here are a couple ideas for breakfast, lunch, and dinner that you can try without breaking the bank!

Breakfast:

A very inexpensive and healthy breakfast is oatmeal.

Ingredients:

You can find oatmeal at Walmart for less than $3.00! This is an 18 ounce container that will last you all week long.

You can add as much or as little fruit to your oatmeal as you desire.

Bananas will be $0.59/lb at Walmart.

Berries will become a little more pricey, but manageable if you decide to add those.

Oatmeal- $2.68
Bananas: $0.59/lb
Raspberries: $2.00
Strawberries: $2.50

 

 

 

Directions:

1. Add ½ cup of plain, old fashioned oatmeal in a microwavable bowl

2. Add 1 cup of milk or water

3. Microwave for about 2-3 minutes

4. Once it is nice and soft, you can add bananas, berries, or anything else you might want

This meal will keep you full and energized all morning long and it is all under $10.00. This $10.00 will last all week long!

bowl of oatmeal

 

Lunch:

An easy and yummy lunch could be lettuce wraps.

Ingredients:

A head of iceberg lettuce is only $0.98 at Walmart.
Bush’s black beans are only $0.92 at Walmart.
Chicken can be a bit more expensive but you can usually get a family pack for $8.00 at Walmart (optional).
Avocados are sometimes on sale at stores like Sprouts where you can find 3 avocados/$2.
Any veggies you may want!

Lettuce - $0.98
Black beans - $0.92
Chicken - $8.00
Avocados – 3/$2
Veggies - varies

 

 

Directions:

This one is really simple. The hardest part is cooking the chicken, but this is optional.

How to cook chicken:

1. Place a bit of olive oil on pan and place on medium heat

2. Cut chicken into little pieces

3. Season chicken with salt and pepper

4. Let chicken sit in heat for about 15 minutes

This dish is meant to be done at your preference, you can slice up avocados, add beans, sour cream, and whatever you prefer!

lettuce wraps

 

Dinner:

A filling and delicious dinner can be chicken sausage pasta.

Ingredients:

Box of pasta at Walmart can be as low as $1.00! These are large enough boxes that can last all week long.

Chicken sausage can vary in prizes, (you can also choose different flavors of sausage) but you can find some as low as $2.00 which also lasts all week.

Pesto can be a bit pricey- it is about $2.50 but this little container will last all month long.

Cheese (optional) can vary in price from $1.00-$3.00, but depends on the type.

Directions:

Pasta:

1. Place entire box of pasta into a pan of boiling water

​2. Let it sit in boiling water until pasta is soft

Chicken sausage:

1. Cut up chicken sausage into small fragments

2. Place a little oil on pan

3. Let chicken sausage cook on pan for about 7-10 minutes

Once you have your pasta and chicken sausage ready, put them in a bowl together. Add pesto and cheese if you desire!

This should last you all week!

bowtie pasta
 

 

So there you have it! A couple inexpensive meals you can make at home that will last you all week long, keeping you full, energized, and pumped with nutrients. You are also allowed to use as little or more ingredients as you would like. Of course, keep in mind that some brands can be more expensive than others, so watch out for that. Happy budgeting and happy eating!

Here are some websites with more healthy recipes: