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List Of 10 Cheapest Foods For Those On A College Diet

Updated on January 17, 2014

Food is something that can end up costing you a ton of cash if you do not know how to shop for cheap foods properly. Coupons can also be combined with buying these foods making them even cheaper! I can easily guarantee that you can afford these meals on a minimum wage budget alone. If you think about it, if you spend 30 cents a meal, multiply that by three meals a day, then 30 days in a month, in the end you will only be spending about 25-30 dollars a month on food. Plus to add on to this wonderful good savings on cheap food, that is also delicious, most of this will last a very long time. This means you wouldn't have to worry about storing the items so much as perishable foods. These are still technically perishable but most of them would take several years to become no good. Here's some of the easiest to afford and cheapest foods in the world!

1. Rice

While rice may be an obvious one, it cannot be ignored. It is extremely cheap to buy and fills you up quickly. White rice normally adds up to be about 11 cents per meal. It's not easy to beat that at all with anything. This will not even dent your budged so buy as much as you want. This food will take several years for it to rot or anything like that. I still have white rice from 2002 and its 2014 now. It is still good to this day.

2. Beans

I'm not talking about your canned beans, because those are crazy expensive. I'm talking about the kind that you boil and soak for yourself. You get a lot more satisfaction out of making it yourself and there's plenty more you can do with them as well. These are slightly more expensive than rice, but only so by a few cents. A meal of beans will typically cost me anywhere from 10 cents to 15 cents depending on the type of beans.

3. Oats

Oats are extremely healthy for you, and cheap to buy. This of course depends on the type of oats you buy. If you buy some sort of specialty oats you will not be able to buy it on this kind of budget. You will want to stick to the cheap stuff. A large container with about 10 meals worth is about 2 dollars or so. These will be something you will want to have because it will give you nutrients that beans and rice will not. If I had to live off of one thing and one thing only that would be oats.

4. All Purpose Flour

All purpose flour can make a great many different types of meals just with the flour alone. Add yeast or egg and you got bread. Use plain with water and you got pancakes. Just as simple as that. Not only that making a meal with this is as cheap as rice. Also, in my opinion, much more delicious than your average plain rice meal as well. It is a carbohydrate so remember you must have your protein to go with that as well. Only carbohydrates will make you fat. A great way to get your protein is either through oats or beans. They have high protein contents.

5. Spaghetti

Yet another carbohydrate. Spaghetti is an all time favorite and is extremely cheap to make per meal. Adding in the sauce as well it will only cost about 20 cents a meal depending on the brands and coupons you get. You can possibly make this even cheaper if you really know what you are doing. While this is more expensive than rice, this is certainly a much more satisfying meal. The only downside it is not as filling as rice either. Cook it with some olive oil or tomato sauce and you'll have yourself a very cheap and easy meal.

6. Tea

This may not be a food, but I felt the need to include it because it is cheaper than rice and it can help settle a stomachs hunger. Tea is something that has been around since early man commonly called an infusion. Not only was it easy to make, but it is delicious and extremely cheap as well! This would be a great way to avoid vitamin c deficiency within your college type of diet. It will cost about 10 cents for a large cup of tea. Even cheaper if you make a large jug of it.

7. Potato

A nice baked potato is something most people can appreciate after not eating for a little while. This deliciously starchy food will not only just make you survive, but make you thrive with how cheap and how filling it is compared to other foods on this list. You however sadly cannot only live off of 3 potatoes a day, as you will lack deficiencies in many other nutritional parts of your health as well. Does this mean it's not good for you? It's just fine for you if you don't live strictly off of it. It only costs 20 cents per potato.

8. Cabbage

Cabbage is very cheap and can be cooked along with other foods to create delicious meal. Perhaps try a cabbage stew recipe, or try cooking some with rice and see how much you enjoy that meal. Add on a few cents if you use sauce as well. Cabbage only costs 11 cents per serving. That is absolutely amazing, cheap, and great for your health all at the same time! Eat as much as you want since it's so healthy.

9. Eggs

These are great for your health and fairly cheap as well. Even cheaper if you own your own chickens to farm with. Two eggs is a suitable breakfast for someone on a budget that is looking to stay healthy at the same time. Eggs cost around 15 cents each, meaning you could have two eggs for 30 cents! It would probably be better if you saved your cents to buy a chicken to produce many eggs (assuming you had a yard), rather than just buy the eggs over and over again.

10. Peanut Butter

Peanut butter is an amazing solution, because it's almost pure protein. Also, it's extremely delicious at the same time! The good thing is, is that since its filling you wont have to worry too much about cost because it becomes extremely cheap. Since it's about 2 dollars a jar, you could get coupons and make it even cheaper. I would assume that a serving of peanut butter would be 30 cents to be safe. Possibly even less if you know what you are doing.

Type Of Food
Price Per Serving
11 cents
12 cents
20 cents
10 cents
20 cents
10 cents
20 cents
11 cents
15 cents
Peanut Butter
30 cents

Here is a video on how to shop for bargains. This should further assist you on buying these foods at a yet even cheaper price. Remember to invest in some sauce and spice as this does affect appetite and can easily make a meal more enjoyable and certainly more filling than just a plain meal. How much you eat will also be a large determining factor in how much you will actually have to spend on food. The less you eat the more you save is a valid way of looking at it, but it may be unhealthy. This does not mean you should starve yourself or your family just to save a few cents. If you think you will need more food, go ahead and spring and extra dollar or two in. This diet here is only for those who are really pressed for cash and probably will not be able to afford anything better than a meal like this. Most of the foods you see on here will be starches, but if you are not eating tons and tons you won't really have to worry too much about gaining weight. Just make sure you eat enough, because starving is even more unhealthy for you than overeating.


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    • VVanNess profile image

      Victoria Van Ness 4 years ago from Fountain, CO

      Very nice! I've been there. I love that with these simple but cheap ingredients, they can learn how to make some of their own foods from scratch (the healthier way).

      Great article! Voted up, useful and interesting.

    • drpennypincher profile image

      Dr Penny Pincher 4 years ago from Iowa, USA

      I like how you break down the cost per serving- nice job! If you want to add a fruit to your list, consider bananas. A banana costs about 25 cents and has tons of potassium, fiber, and other good things...