Cheap Vegan Meal Prep And Recipe Ideas

Three glass containers of food made with cheap vegan meal prep ideas.

Meal prepping is a great way to save money and eat healthy foods. When done correctly, meal prep can help you stay on track with your diet goals and make sure you have plenty of healthy meals ready to eat throughout the week. But what if you’re a vegan on a budget? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! In this blog post, we’ll teach you how to cheap vegan meal prep on a budget. We’ll provide you with tips on how to save money while grocery shopping, as well as some delicious and affordable recipes for vegan meal prep. Let’s get started!

The Basics Of Cheap Vegan Meal Prep

What Is Meal Prep?

Meal prep is the planning and cooking of meals in advance. This can be done for a day, a week, or even a month ahead of time. Meal prepping has become popular in recent years as a way to save time and money, as well as to eat healthier. When done correctly, meal prep can make your life easier and help you to reach your nutritional goals. There are a few things to keep in mind when meal prepping, such as making sure you have enough food to last the entire week, planning for leftovers, and choosing recipes that can be easily scaled up or down. With a little bit of planning, meal prep can make your life easier and help you to reach your nutritional goals.

Why You Should Meal Prep

Meal prepping is a great way to save time and money, while also eating healthier. Meal prep can be a great way to make your vegan lifestyle a bit easier. When you meal prep, you cook all of your meals for the week in advance. This means that you can have healthy, home-cooked meals even on busy weeknights. Additionally, meal prepping can help you to avoid unhealthy temptations when you’re hungry. If all of your meals are already prepared, you’re less likely to indulge in unhealthy takeaway options. Finally, meal prepping can save you money by helping you to avoid wasting food. When you have all of your meals planned out, you’re less likely to let good food go to waste. So, if you’re looking for a way to eat better and save time and money, meal prepping is the way to go.

What You’ll Need To Get Started

When it comes to meal prep, there are a few key things you need in order to get started. First, you need a good set of cookware. This doesn’t have to be anything special – a basic set of pots and pans will do just fine. Second, you need some storage containers. These can be either reusable or disposable, depending on your preferences. third, you need some recipes. There are tons of great resources out there for finding healthy and delicious recipes that can be easily prepped in advance. Once you have these three things, you’re well on your way to starting your meal prep journey!

Recommended Tools And Equipment For Meal Prep

Now that we’ve gone over the basics of meal prep, let’s talk about some of the tools and equipment you’ll need to get started. As we mentioned before, you’ll need a good set of cookware. If you don’t have one already, we recommend investing in a basic set of pots and pans. You’ll also need some storage containers. These can be either reusable or disposable, depending on your preferences.

Best Cookware For Meal Prep

When it comes to cookware, there are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind. First, you’ll want to choose a set that is durable and easy to clean. Second, you’ll want to make sure that the set has all of the basic pieces that you’ll need for cooking, such as a pot, a pan, and a colander. Third, you’ll want to choose a set that is oven-safe, in case you want to meal prep some dishes that need to be baked. With these things in mind, we’ve put together a list of our favorite cookware sets for meal prep.

Cuisinart MultiClad Pro Triple Ply 12-Piece Cookware Set

GreenPan Swift Healthy Ceramic Nonstick

Gotham Steel Pots And Pans Set 12 Piece Cookware Set With Ultra Nonstick Ceramic Coating

Other Cooking Appliance Options For Meal Prep

In addition to pots and pans, there are a few other cooking equipment or appliances that can be helpful for healthy meal prep. First, a slow cooker can be a great way to cook large batches of food. Second, an electric pressure cooker can be a great time-saver when it comes to meal prep. Finally, a food processor can be helpful for prepping ingredients in advance. We recommend the following:

Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker

Lodge 6-Quart Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven

Cuisinart Elemental 8-Cup Food Processor

Best Reusable Storage Containers For Meal Prep

Now that you’ve got your cookware sorted, it’s time to choose some storage containers. As we mentioned before, these can be either reusable or disposable, depending on your preferences. If you choose to go the reusable route, we recommend investing in a set of high-quality containers that will last you for years.

Bentgo Prep 2-Compartment Meal-Prep Containers With Custom-Fit Lids

Bayco 10 Pack Glass Meal Prep Containers

Best Disposable Containers For Meal Prep

If you choose to go the disposable route, we recommend opting for a biodegradable option that will be easier on the environment.

Here are a few of our favorite disposable storage containers for meal prep:

Ez Prepa 20 Pack 32oz 3 Compartment Meal Prep Containers With Lids

PrepNaturals 30 Pack Round Meal Prep Containers With Lids

How To Meal Prep On A Tight Budget

Vegan meal prep doesn’t have to be expensive or difficult. In fact, with a little planning and creativity, you can make delicious vegan meals on a budget. Here are some tips to get you started:

Plan Ahead

Meal prep can be a lifesaver on busy weeknights. But if you’ve ever tried to meal prep without a plan, you know it can be a recipe for disaster. That’s why it’s important to take a few minutes to plan ahead before you start cooking. First, decide what type of meal you want to prep. Will you be cooking breakfast, lunch, or dinner? Once you’ve decided on the type of meal, it’s time to choose your recipes. If you’re new to meal prep, pick recipes that are simple and straightforward. Once you have your recipes selected, you should put them into a weekly meal plan, then it’s time to make your shopping list. Be sure to check your pantry and fridge before heading to the store so you don’t end up buying ingredients you already have. With a little planning, meal prep can be a breeze.

Focus On Low-Cost Ingredients

One of the best ways to save money and create cheap vegan meals when meal prepping is to focus on low-cost whole foods. Simple ingredients like beans, lentils, grains, and fresh fruit and vegetables are all affordable vegan staples that can be used to create a variety of delicious and nutritious dishes. For example, a simple recipe for vegan black bean tacos can be made with just a few ingredients, including black beans, rice, tortillas, and salsa. And this hearty lentil soup only requires lentils, carrots, celery, red onion, and vegetable broth. By using these inexpensive vegan ingredients as the foundation of your meals, you’ll be able to stretch your budget and still enjoy healthy and delicious meals all week long.

Shop Smart

Plan your meals around sales and specials. Check your local grocery store ads to see what’s on sale each week. Then, plan your meals accordingly. For example, if beans are on sale, you could make a pot of chili or black bean soup. Or, if rice is on sale, you could make a batch of stir-fry or Fried Rice. By shopping smart and taking advantage of sales, you’ll be able to save money on your grocery bill each week.

When it comes to vegan meal prep, there are a few more things to keep in mind in order to make the most of your groceries and avoid wasting food. For perishable items like fruits and vegetables, it’s best to consume them early in the week. This way, they’ll stay fresh and you won’t have to worry about them going bad. On the other hand, non-perishable items like grains and lentils can be stored for longer periods of time. So, if you’re meal prepping for the week ahead, you can save these items for later in the week. By following these simple tips, you can ensure that you don’t waste any food when doing vegan meal prep.

Cook In Bulk

Cooking in bulk is a great way to save money and time on vegan meal prep. There are two different ways that you can cook in bulk – you can prepare entire meals or prepare a big batch of a variety of staples to mix and match to create meals throughout the week. If you choose to prepare entire meals, it’s important to make sure they can be easily reheated. Planning ahead and cooking in bulk can help you stay on track with your vegan diet and save money at the same time. To save even more time, prepare sauces and other additions for your meals in advance, as these can be time-consuming to prepare in single serves. This will help you create quick and easy meals that are healthy and delicious.

Use Frozen Foods

Frozen foods are a great solution to make quick and easy meals for busy vegans on a budget. Here are some tips for using frozen foods to create cheap and delicious vegan meal prep recipes:

  • Start with a base of rice, quinoa, or another grain. Frozen grains are often cheaper than fresh, and they cook quickly and easily. Simply add them to a pot of boiling water and let them cook until tender.
  • Add in some protein with frozen tofu, tempeh, or seitan. These versatile ingredients can be added to any recipe, and they’ll help to keep you feeling full throughout the day.
  • Add in some veggies for extra nutrients and flavor. Frozen vegetables are just as healthy as fresh, and they’ll save you time by not needing to be chopped or peeled. Simply add them to your pot of grains as they cook, or steam them separately and add them into your dish at the end.
  • Finally, top it all off with some tasty sauces or seasonings. Frozen foods can be bland, so it’s important to add in some flavor. Experiment with different sauces, spices, and herbs to find a combination that you love.

Get Creative With Recipes

If you’re vegan, you know that meal prep can be a bit of a challenge. It can be hard to find recipes that are both delicious and budget-friendly. However, there are a few tricks you can use to get creative with your vegan meal prep and save some money in the process. For example, choose several recipes that use the same ingredients so that you can buy in bulk and save money. You can also make simple substitutions to reduce the cost of your ingredients without sacrificing taste or nutrition. For instance, swapping out expensive vegan cheese for nutritional yeast or using cauliflower rice instead of quinoa can help you stretch your budget further. With a little creativity, it is possible to create delicious vegan meals that won’t break the bank.

Don’t Let Leftovers Go To Waste

One important rule of meal prep is don’t let leftovers go to waste! One of the best ways to reduce food waste is to use leftovers from previous meals during meal prep. This way, you can make the most of your ingredients and avoid throwing out food that could still be eaten. You can use leftovers in new and inventive ways to keep things interesting. For example, leftover rice can be used to make fried rice or rice pudding. Or, leftover vegetables can be used to make soup or a veggie-packed stir-fry. If you have leftover protein, you can use it to make a new dish or add it to a salad or grain bowl. By getting creative with your leftovers, you can save money and reduce food waste at the same time.

Vegan Staples For Meal Prep

Having some vegan staples on hand makes meal prep easy by allowing you to assemble quick, healthy meals without spending hours in the kitchen. Plus, you can often get ahead by prepping multiple meals at once and then freezing them for later. Here are some of the best vegan staples to stock up on for effortless meal prep:

  • Whole grains: Brown rice, quinoa, millet, farro, etc.
  • Beans and legumes: Black beans, chickpeas (garbanzo beans), lentils, etc.
  • Vegetables: Roasted sweet potatoes or butternut squash, steamed broccoli or green beans, sautéed mushrooms, sweet peas etc.
  • Milk replacements: Coconut milk, almond milk, oat milk, etc.
  • Sauces and dressings: Tahini sauce, peanut sauce, balsamic vinaigrette, hot sauce, soy sauce, tomato sauce, etc.
  • Condiments: Sriracha, salsa, chili powder, peanut butter, maple syrup, lime juice, etc.
  • Oils: Olive oil, avocado oil, coconut oil, etc.

With a few of these staples on hand, you’ll be able to whip up filling vegan meals in no time.

30 Budget-Friendly Vegan Recipes That You Can Meal Prep

Now that you know how to vegan meal prep on a budget, it’s time to get cooking! Here are some delicious and budget-friendly vegan recipes that are perfect for meal prep:

Zucchini, Chickpea, and Potato Curry – The Short Order Cook
This mildly-spiced Indian curry is a fantastic meal prep recipe since it tastes better days later as the sauce flavors everything. Zucchini, Chickpea, & Potato Curry is protein-packed, has a rich coconut curry sauce, and yummy vegetables for a complete meal everyone loves.
Check out this recipe
Vegan Egg Bites (Starbucks Copycat) – Best Served Vegan
These vegan egg bites are the perfect option for busy mornings. Meal prep these on Sunday and you’ll be ready with a healthy, energizing, grab-and-go breakfast for the whole week!
Check out this recipe
Vegan Spinach Salad With Balsamic Dressing – Summer Yule
Vegan spinach salad is a healthy meal prep with a colorful variety of veggies. It's a treat for both eyes and taste buds!
Check out this recipe
Vegan Shepherd’s Pie With Lentils – The Allergen Free Kitchen
Vegan shepherd’s pie with lentils is a great meat free family recipe for a dinner casserole. A great way to use up leftover potato’s and get loads of protein as well as being gluten, dairy, and top 8 free.
Check out this recipe
Vegan Burrito Bowl (Chipotle Copycat) – Best Served Vegan
Enjoy this Chipote-inspired vegan burrito bowl made with fajita veggies, guacamole, rice, and beans. This recipe is easy, healthy, and great to meal prep for lunch or dinner!
Check out this recipe
Kale Wild Rice Salad – Through the Fibro Fog
This kale wild rice salad is fresh and light, and perfect for summer. It combines healthy vegetables, herbs and rice, with a spicy ginger dressing. Easy to make ahead as a meal prep lunch or dinner!
Check out this recipe
Easy Red Lentil Dahl – Vegan Huggs
This Red Lentil Dahl is a full-on comfort meal that your whole family will love. It requires common ingredients, minimal prep, and it'll cook up beautifully in 30 minutes or less!
Check out this recipe
Lentil Bolognese – I Heart Eating
Naturally gluten free and vegan, this Lentil Bolognese recipe is a hearty, healthy lentil recipe that's perfect for topping pasta or just about anything else.
Check out this recipe
Mexican Bento Box – Gathering Dreams
Pack a complete Mexican-themed lunch in minutes. This Mexican bento box features a combination of flavor-packed ingredients inspired by the fresh and fiery flavors south of the border. This no-cook assortment of vegan and vegetarian eats is a great way to spice up lunchtime!
Check out this recipe
Curry Bento Box – Gathering Dreams
Spice up your lunch or dinner routine with this curry bento box! This grab-and-go spread of Indian-inspired dishes features a light, flavorful chickpea curry, whole-grain brown rice, and a spicy cucumber salad with roasted nuts -all of which are plant-based and tasty at room temperature.
Check out this recipe
Vegan Bento Box – Gathering Dreams
Upgrade school and work lunches with this simple and satisfying vegan bento box. This combination of satiating plant-based foods is quick, easy, and delicious. Pack an avocado sandwich, berries, and popcorn, or customize your plant-based meal with your favorites. Raw and gluten-free vegan bento box variations included.
Check out this recipe
Black Bean Salad – I Heart Eating
Best black bean salad recipe! This simple black bean corn salad recipe is naturally vegan and makes a healthy side dish or light dinner.
Check out this recipe
Cheesy Broccoli Rice Casserole (Vegan) – Veggie Fun Kitchen
Fresh broccoli and long-grain white rice make the base for this vegan casserole, smothered in a savory, cheesy plant-based sauce.
Check out this recipe
Pad Pak Thai (Stir Fried Vegetables) – Organically Addison
These Vegan stir fry vegetables are perfect for meal prep! Veggies have never tasted so delicious. This recipe is easy, healthy and versatile.
Check out this recipe
Vegan Scrambled Egg With Tofu And Peppers – Veggie Fun Kitchen
This delicious vegan scrambled egg recipe is made with extra firm tofu, bell peppers, onions, and seasoned just right. Serve with a side of roasted sweet potatoes and fruit, or add to your breakfast burrito for a satisfying high protein vegan breakfast dish.
Check out this recipe
Vegan Panang Curry With Tofu And Vegetables – Piping Pot Curry
This authentic Vegan Panang Curry with Tofu and Vegetables is rich and creamy with a balance of sweet and spicy flavors, and so easy to make in under 30 minutes. This vegetarian and gluten-free Thai curry served with jasmine rice is a hit with the whole family.
Check out this recipe
Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad – iFOODreal
This healthy Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad is a refreshing Middle Eastern side with protein packed gluten-free quinoa, crunchy juicy vegetables, fresh herbs, and zesty lemon juice. Easy to make and so good!
Check out this recipe
Instant Pot Chickpea Curry With Spinach (Chana Saag) – Piping Pot Curry
This Spinach Chickpea Curry, also known as Chana Saag, is a healthy vegan and gluten-free curry. This easy one-pot curry is made with chickpeas and spinach in a sauce made of onions, tomatoes, ginger, garlic and aromatic spices. Serve it with rice, quinoa, or naan for a perfect weeknight dinner!
Check out this recipe
Vegan One Pot Pasta – Running On Real Food
This one pot pasta recipe makes the best quick and easy dinner! Made with simple, fresh ingredients and a few pantry staples, you’ll love having this delicious vegan recipe in your back pocket.
Check out this recipe
An Easy One-Pot Vegetable Vegan Chickpea Stew – The Delicious Spoon
Hearty with a sweet and smoky flavor, this Vegetable Chickpea Stew Recipe is an easy one-pot meal! It’s healthy comfort food, perfect for chilly fall evenings, and ideal for freezing for a quick meal another day!
Check out this recipe
Roasted Yellow Pepper Soup – The Allergen Free Kitchen
Roasted yellow pepper soup is a delicious warming soup that is simple to make ahead with few ingredients. Full of flavor and smooth yet vegan, gluten and dairy free, as well as top 8 free.
Check out this recipe
Pumpkin And Sweet Potato Soup – Aussie Home Cook
This hearty pumpkin and sweet potato soup is comforting and packed with flavor. With roast pumpkin and sweet potato, it’s budget-friendly and simple to make.
Check out this recipe
Spiced Carrot Lentil Soup – My Frugal Family Kitchen
This comforting and healthy budget friendly carrot soup recipe with lentils is loved by kids and toddlers, is perfect for meal prep, and freezes well. It’s vegan, gluten free and easy to make.
Check out this recipe
Quinoa Vegetable Soup – It’s Not Complicated Recipes
Packed with vegetables, beans and quinoa, this Quinoa Vegetable Soup makes a comforting and healthy lunch or dinner. It is full of delicious flavors and spices and is vegan, gluten-free and nut-free. With a generous amount of protein from the black beans and quinoa, this is a fantastic quinoa recipe that is hearty and satisfying.
Check out this recipe
Cashew Carrot Ginger Soup (Vegan, Gluten-Free) – The Littlest Crumb
This thick & creamy cashew carrot ginger soup is an easy-to-make instant pot soup recipe. Made with cashews, carrots, ginger, coconut milk and Thai red curry paste for a bit of spice. Plus it’s both vegan and gluten-free!
Check out this recipe
Butternut Squash And Apple Soup – Through The Fibro Fog
This butternut squash and apple soup has all the flavours of fall, with sweet squash and apple, and fragrant sage. A vegan and low histamine recipe. Delicious, healthy and perfect for meal prep!
Check out this recipe
Red Lentil Tortillas (Vegan, Gluten-Free) – Inspired Epicurean
These tortillas are here to make your wraps even more protein-packed! Enjoy with some hummus and veggies of your choice to make it a fun meal any time of day!
Check out this recipe
10 Minute Garlic Bok Choy Recipe – The Forked Spoon
Crisp, fresh, and bursting with loads of unexpected flavor, this Garlic Bok Choy Recipe is guaranteed to be your new favorite side dish. Ready in just 10 minutes, enjoy this easy vegetarian side dish with your favorite protein.
Check out this recipe
Vegan Funfetti Protein Bites – Best Served Vegan
These vegan funfetti protein bites are full of plant-based protein and only 8 ingredients. They are a yummy no-bake snack that basically tastes like you’re eating cake batter right out of the bowl!
Check out this recipe
Easy Vegan Lemon Blueberry Baked Oats Without Banana – Baking Ginger
This easy vegan lemon blueberry baked oatmeal recipe is the perfect make ahead breakfast.
Check out this recipe

Final Thoughts

Meal prep can be a great way to save time and money, especially if you’re vegan. By following these tips and cooking some of the recipes we’ve shared today, you’ll be able to vegan meal prep on a budget and still enjoy delicious, healthy food. And, with a little creativity, you can make your meal prep even more budget-friendly.

If you’re looking for more ways to eat well on a budget, we also recommend checking out the following posts for some more tips and tricks for making your money go further:

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.