Friday Five: Healthy Foods to Buy When You’re Low on Cash

Okay, scratch the “Friday Five” words. One week and I’m already bored of it. But I like the idea of making a list every week, so I’ll hold onto it, just do a different list of stuff every Friday. So, without further ado, I give you the second Friday Five!
One of my biggest loves is food, and eating well has proved difficult in college. There’s no one to keep my fridge constantly full of healthy and delicious comestibles, so I’ve had to learn to forage for myself in the depths of the local Kroger, a task both daunting and dangerous for my pocketbook. Here are a few of the healthy favorites I’ve found thus far:

1) Sweet potatoes

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Cost: about $0.98 per pound
Ways to eat them: My favorite ways of cooking sweet potatoes are twice-baking them or making them into oven fries. When you oven-fry sweet potatoes, make sure you use olive oil– it’s consistently healthier and much more flavorful than plain vegetable oil. As far as seasonings go, I’ve found allspice goes well with sweet potatoes, but I also like to make them with green onions and garlic.

2) Black beans

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Cost: about $0.85 per can, about two servings
Ways to eat: My favorite way of preparing black beans is to mix them with salsa and garnish with cilantro and lime. Trés tasty! Black beans are also phenomenal in soups and chilis, and they happen to go well when paired with sweet potatoes.

3) Oatmeal

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Cost: about $1.85 for 18 oz
Ways to eat: Of course there’s the traditional oatmeal, but try adding bits of cooked apple (fresh, mind you!) and cinnamon for a much healthier and cheaper alternative to oatmeal packets. Oatmeal is also an excellent healthy substitute in cookies and muffins.

4) Bananas

Source.

Cost: about $0.45 per pound
Ways to eat: In cereal, in yogurt, for breakfast on the go, on PB & banana sandwiches… Bananas have become my go-to fruit for at least one of my servings for the day because they’re probably the cheapest fruit on the market!

5) Plain Yogurt

Source.

Cost: about $1.77 for 1 lb
Ways to eat: Well, to be frank with you, I just like the stuff plain. However, yogurt can also be used as a milk substitute in many recipes, and with a bit of cereal and some fruit, makes an excellent parfait (a trick I learned from a cereal box as a kid!) Protip: make sure the yogurt you buy has only one ingredient! Most conventional yogurt has added flavoring or sugars.

Okay, so that’s not an incredible or life-changing list, but those five foods have definitely been my primary sustenance thus far. Hope you enjoyed it!

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