Your Guide to Budget-Friendly Grocery Shopping

Elle Penner, MPH, RD
by Elle Penner, MPH, RD
Share it:

Contrary to popular belief, eating well doesn’t have to break the bank. There are plenty of nutritious, budget-friendly foods in the supermarket, but with so many options and prices to compare, finding them can be a bit of a challenge.

To help you navigate the grocery store while staying within your means, check out this budget-friendly grocery guide, with 54 of the most affordable and nutritious foods out there. We’ve included the average cost per serving, based on data from the USDA and large national grocery chains, although prices do vary by store and location. You’ll also find nutrition highlights and meal ideas for each food, plus tips for stretching your savings even further.

Take inspiration from this list and try these budget-friendly meals that fit any diet.

Originally published April 2016, updated with additional reporting

Unlock an experience that’s like having a dietitian, trainer and coach — right at your fingertips. Go Premium for expert guidance and exclusive tools that will help you reach your personal health goals.

About the Author

Elle Penner, MPH, RD
Elle Penner, MPH, RD

Elle is a nutrition and wellness writer, recipe developer, blogger and nutrition consultant whose favorite things include her camera, carbs and quality time with her toddler. For more from this busy mama, check out Elle’s lifestyle blog or connect with her on Instagram, Pinterest and Facebook.


16 responses to “Your Guide to Budget-Friendly Grocery Shopping”

  1. Avatar Amy says:

    What’s up with the image of the tub of ‘yogert’? Is it actually spelled that way anywhere on the planet or a really bad typo?

  2. Avatar Andrea says:

    Thanks for the great printable list!

  3. Avatar Donna Dobie says:

    Not accurate on the pricing. Right now eggs are running 2.99 a dozen for us and going up. That works out to almost .25 per egg not .17 per egg. Same with much of the dairy. Also vegetable and fruit prices vary per season.

  4. Avatar Amy Spencer says:

    Thank you for this article. Of course the exact pricing will vary depending on location, but it’s good to see a nice list of budget friendly foods.

  5. Avatar priceswarm says:

    You can find the exact pricing of healthy foods in your locality by using apps like PriceSwarm.

  6. Avatar Amanda says:

    Thanks for this, looks great!

  7. I like all these suggestions. I would like suggestions on how to combine them into meals / menus for the week. Anybody?

  8. Avatar littlesnake says:

    Why are you recommending the low fat options of yogurt and cottage cheese?

  9. Avatar imjustsaying says:

    Wheat is not good for you. Neither is soy and you have to watch lentils if you eat them a lot. A lot of the so call “low fat” yogurt is full of sugar. You really have to watch these things. In terms of nutrition, I find some of this information to be outdated in terms of nutrition as compared to evidence-based information that is available today which is more accurate. Not to mention that the pricing is off as well. You’d have to really maintain this to keep the pricing accurate.

    • Avatar SRead says:

      Wheat is fine for people who do not have a sensitivity to it. The sugar in low fat, plain yogurt is lactose which is not a concern.

      • Avatar chexwarrior says:

        What evidence are you basing the claim that lactose is “not a concern” on? It causes insulin secretion just like sucrose and other sugars, and it can be converted into glycogen just like most other carbohydrates. Both of which impair weight loss and are exactly what the low carb diet seek to avoid. Also while there may be some brands whose low fat yogurt does not add sucrose or HFCS to make up for the lack of fat you have to be careful because many brands do; in order to taste as good as the full fat variant manufacturers of many so called “healthy alternatives” will remove one thing from the “sugar fat salt” triangle and compensate with the other two.

    • Avatar Melanie says:

      What’s wrong with eating a lot of lentils?

  10. Avatar bwh says:

    Confusing nutritional info on the almonds. This lists 4g fat while the app and most other websites list 14g. That’s quite a difference.

  11. Avatar eZeelo says:

    Your blog is very nice thanks for sharing this post..

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Never Miss a Post!

Turn on MyFitnessPal desktop notifications and stay up to date on the latest health and fitness advice.


Click the 'Allow' Button Above


You're all set.