Vegan Food Cost
Wed 11 Apr 2007
Two hundred dollars is just insane. I am just one person. and I am vegan. Vegetables do not cost this much!
Granted, I buy some things for "the house", that my boyfriend will eat as well. Like bulk almonds and Morning Star crumbles and Clif bars and flour and sugar. (He buys things for "the house" as well, so I would think it would average out, in the end.) And also granted that I've been on a stocking up craze. It just makes me happy to see the cupboard full.
But the 220 was a wake up call. I decided I would live off the cupboard, and not buy anything in April. uh huh. I ran out of yeast. And since I make bread every weekend, I really need yeast.
So, today's grocery run was 75$. Hopefully, I'm done with the grocery for the month. The Farmers Market just opened, tho, so I'm sure I'll be buying more food before the month is done. sighs.
My wakeup call is telling me I need to re-evaluate some of my convenience foods again. Specifically, I'd like to modify the lunches that I make to eat at work.
Right now, standard work food includes:
Vegan/organic chocolate granola bar. Very expensive at 85¢ per bar. If I need more calories, I will eat a Clif bar instead, which is $1 to $1.50 per bar, depending on where it came from.
Sandwich. Homemade bread buttered with Earth Balance with Yves Veggie Slices. I'm not sure how much it costs me to make my own bread, but I'm not worried about that cost because my vegan bread is much more healthy and self-sufficient than store bread. The Veggie Slices cost 3$/pack, a pack lasts a week, so that's 60¢ per day.
Corn chips. I buy the family pack, 2.30$, and put a handful in a ziplock. Not sure how long the chips last, maybe several weeks. And I like my corn chips, so I'm not going to replace these.
Coke. 35¢ per can (with the recycling deposit, which I don't usually get back because I let SO deal with the recycling). The coke is an addiction and a necessary convenience, at this point.
So, I want to think about replacing my morning granola bar, and my sandwich stuffing.
I don't eat a lot of fruit, but I could eat an apple at morning break. The apples I bought today (by weight) turned out to be 72¢ per apple. They were not organic, but they did come from the next state up so they are more local than regular apples from China. That's important.
And my mom provided me with a good granola bar recipe. I just need to figure out a way to "package" them for work since they tend to crumble randomly. Maybe wrap them up in foil, which I would obviously reuse. (um, it is obvious that I'm an environmentalist, isn't it?!) (jeez, I hope so!) (ha.)
For my sandwiches, I've decided to bake my own tofu. It was on sale today for a dollar a package, so I got several. It's usually $1.80, and would last a week, making it 36¢ per sandwich (the sale price is 20¢ per sandwich!). Much better than the 60¢ Veggie Slices, and a lot more robust. I'll be baking the tofu in some Newmans Own salad dressing, which will add to the cost, but much more healthy than the Veggie Slices.
There's always peanut butter, of course. Peanut butter sandwiches used to be my favorite, but apparently I've burned myself out on them. heh.
It's been a while since I've done homemade hummus, too. I don't have exact prices, guessing it would be $3 total for a can of chickpeas and a can of black olives... that batch lasts two weeks, so a sandwich of hummus would be a bit over 30¢ (other ingredients include small amounts of tahini and lemon juice). Cheap and yummy.
We'll see how it goes. I know that eating more homemade food is very good for me, but I also know that I get annoyed at the time it takes to make stuff. I am not a cook and I don't enjoy spending time in the kitchen. But this is important to me, so I will figure out how to do these things in the most efficient way I can!
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