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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok, I'm a new vegetarian working on going vegan (still trying to kick the dairy habit). Here's the deal, though: I'm exceedingly poor, as I am also a college student. Mostly my diet switch has actually been easier on my wallet - meat is derned expensive. I'm a little worried I'm not getting the protein I need, though, and I realized yesterday I'm not getting as many calories as I need either. What are some foods that are really nutrient-packed for my buck? What are your favorites?
 

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Well, not sure if this'd be all the nutrients or nutrient packed, but on a good day of eating for me I have something like this:

1 can of fruit (or 2-3apples, 1-2 bannanas)

1 soy burger (with tomato/lettuce/soy cheese/homemade BBQ sauce on a homemade bun)

2 cups Steamed Broccoli/Cauliflower

Ok, to make it smaller or more cost effective, if possible buy in bulk (ex: SAMS club) for some items (12 pack of tomato paste for $5, it's $1 for a small can at my local store, 1gal of canola oil is about $5 also, compared to $3 at a local store). If you can't make your own food, it'd be a lot harder... Hope you like nuts and fresh veggies, and fruits (canned too).

As far as calories... how many's not enough? are you losing a lot of weight?

Well that was probably completely helpless... oh well, I could give better ideas if I knew if you had a kitchen to work in, or just a microwave.
 

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For protein, textured soy protein might do. It's kinda like ground beef, but its soy, and it's packed w/ protein. Cheap as chips and a great meat replacement. (It is great if you do miss meat.)

Nuts or nut butters: Protein & fat are found in nuts & nut butters so they're great.

Canola oil: It's cheap, and great to have in the kitchen. You fry stuff in it, and it's good for you. Full of calories, so it's great for you. Make your own fries, by frying potatoes in canola oil. It is junk food, but the calories are there.

Falafel: You'll probably find a recipe somewhere on here, but it's fried, and full of calories. Also, it's made from chickpeas (cheap) and though it could be called junk food, it's full of chickpea goodness!
Very tasty! And beans means protein!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Oh, we live in an apartment, so I have access to everything - microwave and stove, etc. I don't know if I'm losing weight (actually, clothes ARE fitting differently), but I counted up the calories I got yesterday and they were about 1300. On top of which, my run this morning was pretty awful - I felt very tired through most of it. This is another concern for me - I have read that runners require more protein, and I am worried about where to get it.
 

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i would go with tofu, not sure if you like it but its good for protein and its pretty cheap. It can be made in many different ways, like even a pudding if you don't like the normal texture. A friend of mine dehydrates it and makes a jerky.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Loki [/i

Falafel: You'll probably find a recipe somewhere on here, but it's fried, and full of calories. Also, it's made from chickpeas (cheap) and though it could be called junk food, it's full of chickpea goodness!
Very tasty! And beans means protein! [/B]


I LOVE Falafel
 

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we buy nuts at discount stores (in U.S. dollar general have cheap ones) to munch on several times a week. we eat tofu scrambler several times a week. i make tofu pudding. we also eat lots of beans. all of these add good amounts of protein as well as are cheap.
 

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Beans, beans, and more beans! Dried beans are cheap and yummy! You can make red beans and rice (cheap, cheap, cheap)--I make huge batches of red beans and rice--cook up lots of red beans, throw in a can or two of diced tomatoes, a chopped green pepper, a chopped onion, a package of smoked tempeh, some tabasco, some garlic, and a whole bunch of brown rice. It makes enough for me to eat 8 or 9 meals and costs around $8. If you eat it the beans and rice with a salad and some bread, you end up with 11 or 12 meals. Lots of protein, lots of fiber, lots of complex carbs.
 

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Sure you know this... but if you happen to start eating a lot of beans (more than now) you may be visiting the bathroom more...

Assuming you somewhat liked the meat versions:

You can also make vegetarian chilie (4+ types of beans, under $12 (in normal can sizes) [depending on how much you eat...] 2-4 days of food.

Vegetarian Sloppy joes, or tacos can also be made with just a little food, but last for days (leave out some ingredients and you could reuse it).

Of course there's always the fix a whole bunch of vegetables soy and (optional) rice together toss together with some flavoring (ex: tomato) and eat with whatever seems natural. It's amazing what looks/tastes good in (homemade) taco shells. Especially if you wrap it folding in the ends then cook it so that it's a pocket. Portable veggie meals.
 

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You could buy lots of veggies, at least broccoli, cauliflour, snow peas and carrots and make a huge salad with tons of different canned beans, and tofu(cut up into small cubes). Use baby spinach not iceberg lettuce and tear it into smaller pieces.

Top it off with this dressing

2:1 ratio of Extra Virgin Olive Oil:Vinegar

some salt and pepper to taste

chopped onion

Gouldens mustard, cause it's vegan(and good), to taste

mix this dressing very well or you'll get mostly oil when serving

Healthy with good complex carbs, complete protein, and vitamins minerals and nutrients to keep ya going and really fill you up. If you're really worried about not getting enough protein really load on the beans and tofu, I do. I usually add at least about 2 cups of beans to the salad. The beans taste great with their own gravy mixed with the dressing. Mix the salad thoroughly.

Make a huge salad and store some for later.

Beans
 

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Peanut butter is good. I find that if I leave Clif bars around the house, I compulsively eat them at random moments. Yummmmy. 89 cents at Costco. Coffe Soy milk. Really yumy, full of sugar. Also cheap at Trader joes.

yeah avocados are great ! My favourite sandwhich: Fry sliced tofu on grill....grill bread, 1 side then flip and smear avacado on. assemble tofu on the sandwhich, then add mustard, tomatoes, and lettuce. mmm.

Do you like Sesame? Vegan sesame sticks are around .49 or even .39 at most stores. Just sugar, glucose, sesame seeds, and salt. They're kinda chewy and sweet. Great for the money, decent amount of calories for a snack!

It'd be a good idea to get a recipe book. i've found some good recipes among those, like really easy pancakes, just 1 carton of yogurt, flour, bakings soda/powder, salt, sweetener, and vanilla.

Buy in bulk too! You can find cheap snacks, instant soups/ even falafel, pasta , fig bars, and high cal granola.
Oh, and I love whole grain pasta. Eden quina/kamut spirals are awesome. cheaper at trader joes. I dunno about "normal" prices.
 

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is miso high in protein and/or calories? anyone know?

i was thinking i might get a big thing of it, the stuff lasts forever, and some dehydrated vegetables from the bulk food store, and rice noodles.

yummy nummy soup that takes like 5 minutes to make and costs like nuthin. you could add chunks of tofu to it for more protein, i had an instant miso and tofu soup the other day that was really good. comes in a package just like ramen but costs like $1.50 for one. for a couple bucks more you could make tons of it
 

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the best way to save money at the health food store, or any food store for that matter, is the bulk foods and fresh fruits and vegetables!! even though processed foods are SO tempting because a lot of them taste damn good, stick to whole, fresh foods. you can buy organic oats for .69 cents/pound... bananas around the same price, too. other grains like kasha, quinoa, lentils, basmati rice, etc are all great and caloric. you can also get nuts in the bulk bins. and a lot of health food stores have peanut butter-making machine things and it's really cheap and peanut butter is really fatty and healthy!

 

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mushrooms are also a surprisingly good source of protein and (for vegans) a source of non-animal B12.

I eat a lot of tofu- I just love the stuff. The Gimme Lean veggie sausage I use often (I recently made a fantabulous "dirty rice" which had red beans (good iron, too) and sausage, so was a mega protein meal.

I drink lots of soy milk. I use chick peas in Indian style "subji" (or vegetable stew...

I don't care much for nuts or nut butters, so I never eat that stuff.

I eat refried beans in burritos and on organic tortilla chips (bean dip style)

HUMMUS. It is incredibly EASY to make and not expensive to buy. You can use hummus in so many ways: a dip for chips or fresh veggies, as a sandwich spread, in burritos.....etc.

I like hummus with veggie pepperoni on kalamata olive rolls......YUUUUM....

I think I probably get more high quality protein than most meat eaters (without the torture, death, fat, cholesterol, anti-biotics, hormones, environmental pollution, etc.....OK...sorry, sorry!)

Anyhow- there is tons of cheap protein out there for you!
 

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Who started this idea that being vegan is expensive? It's certainly no more expensive than any other diet.

If you want to save money, stop shopping at Wild Oats and other "health food" stores which market to yuppie sensibilities and for some reason feel empowered to charge ridiculous prices. You can buy all of the basics to make excellent vegan meals at any grocery store.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Cassiel

This is another concern for me - I have read that runners require more protein, and I am worried about where to get it.
Athletes or otherwise very active people don't necessarily need more protein, they just need more energy in general. The percentage of calories coming from protein in your food is exactly the same as for everyone else, but if you need 3000 calories instead of 2000, then obviously your protein-grams are going to go up accordingly. That doesn't mean you have to look out for protein especially however. Just make sure you get a balanced diet that provides all the calories you need
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
If anything I've found that being vegan is actually cheaper. However, I've got essentially NO money and I don't have any kind of health food store nearby, either. I just need to know what I can buy which is cheap to supply me with the nutrients I need - I need to know for sure that I don't have to go out and buy soy milk ($3 a pop at my grocery store) and meat substitutes (also derned expensive) in order to have decent nutrition. Thanks for all the suggestions.
 
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