Is Veganism more Expensive?

Image of Vegetables with the heading- Is it more expensive being vegan?

Costs vary depending on Eating Habits:

I decided to write about the question- “Is Veganism more Expensive?” because it’s a question I get a lot from people. Short answer is No, being vegan is not more expensive. I would say overall, being vegan doesn’t make that much of a difference on your grocery bill. I say this because veganism isn’t a strict diet. Contrary to what many non-vegans believe, veganism is not a limited diet but one that has so much variety and can vary greatly from person to person.

As most of us know, the main difference is that vegans keep milk, eggs, meat, cheese and any other animal products out of their cart, while non-vegans don’t. Some vegans choose to replace these products with their vegan alternatives, while others will decide to eat more whole plant foods instead. In this article, I will explain to you how veganism doesn’t have to be expensive and which vegan diet would likely be most cost effective.

Veganism Overloaded with Substitutes can be more Expensive :

By this I mean a vegan diet that chooses to replace all meat, dairy and egg products with their store bought vegan alternative such as, veggie meats (sausages, hot dogs, sandwich meats, burgers), vegan cheeses, vegan mayo, vegan cookies etc.

If you choose to go over-bored on these alternatives, you may think, “well veganism is expensive”. These companies are relatively new with less demand, meaning they will have higher prices. Luckily, with more people going vegan these prices are reducing!

Convenience Foods:

We are fortunate that convenience food options are more readily available for vegans. Grocery stores, restaurants and fast food chains carry vegan options because sometimes even vegans get busy and don’t feel like cooking! Having convenience food on occasion won’t make a huge dent in your wallet but, these foods can be more expensive whether you are vegan or not. As a new vegan you may choose to go this simpler route but making food yourself will always keep your food costs down. Try to keep it down to only a few times a month.

Here are some great easy dishes to make from home:

Avocado Pesto Penne

Vegan Cheesy Spaghetti

Health Craze Vegan:

I am a huge supporter of people trying to be as healthy as possible, but I believe many people can go overboard on this and spend too much money on supplements and super food type products. I believe that supplements can provide some great health benefits to help prevent sickness, and help us heal but sometimes people will take these supplements to replace healthy eating habits and I strongly believe that food is a much better source. These supplements in excess can also get costly. My suggestion to stay on budget is to keep it simple, take what you need but try to get the most out of your diet first.

The Whole Foods Plant-Based Vegan

By whole foods I mean foods that are in there most natural forms and not processed. Vegans who eat only whole foods, do not consume processed foods. I would say that eating this way is probably the most affordable. Buying whole fruits, vegetables, grains, and legumes can keep your costs very low, especially if you buy in bulk. This way of eating is healthy but sometimes can be difficult for people new to veganism or have kids that are picky eaters.

assorted vegetable lot
Photo by Matheus Cenali on Pexels.com

Overall:

Veganism doesn’t have to be expensive; it can be equal to or possibly even cheaper to go vegan. My best advice is to eat a whole foods plant-based diet as much as possible and to keep convenience foods and processed foods low. If at first, you are buying the convenience foods more often, that’s okay! These vegan products and convenience food options help us transition easier into veganism; we can slowly cut down on them the more we get familiar with vegan cooking. Long-term, transitioning to a vegan diet will help your health and your wallet!

Check out below some more great savings tips and please feel free to comment any of your own!

Organic vs. Non Organic

I like to buy organic but it tends to be more expensive. Organic will have less harmful chemicals so try to look for it on sale, a lot of times grocery stores will sell the uglier produce for less even though it is equally good.

By in Season and Local:

In season produce and local can be cheaper, buy in bulk and freeze some for a later time!

Buy in Bulk:

As mentioned above, you can buy in bulk when things are on sale and freeze it. Bulk food stores offer foods at a lower cost for a larger quantity. Things to buy at bulk food stores include nuts and seeds, grains, beans, cereals, and spices.

Meal Planning and Prepping:

Spend one night a week planning what your meals will look like for the week, doing your shopping, and prepping the foods you can in advance. Having some preparation will keep you away from the more expensive convenient food items.

Produce Delivery Boxes:

Find a local company that offers produce delivery boxes. These services can be more pricey but save you in the long-run from going out and buying convenience food items on busy day. These services usually tell you ahead of time what’s in your box for that week so you can plan your meals around it!

Compare Prices:

If you have some extra time try going online or looking through flyers to see which stores are offering the best deals. Additionally, many different brands sell the same product, see if you can find the same quality of the product in a lesser-known brand for a more affordable price.

Final Note – the most Important:

Don’t go to the grocery store hungry!

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