Go Back   Cosplay.com > Cosplay Chat > Fitness

Reply
Thread Tools Rate Thread
Unread 09-15-2015, 05:56 PM   #1
Kiramay
Filthy Casual
 
Kiramay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 113
Nutrition on a Budget

I'm sure many of us budget for groceries or feel quite limited to what we can buy. I tried to look around at the other topics under nutrition but didn't turn up with a whole lot. I am a college student with part-time income and my boyfriend is the same. We've let our diet (regular eating habits, not 'diet' diet) slide downhill looking for quick, cheap things that were easy to bring to campus/work to eat and that is certainly not how I want to keep going. There are usually only three days a week we can eat dinner together, much of our time is at school/work so we are trying to figure out better things we can pack up and bring to school (can't be refrigerated) and work (can be refrigerated)

My own cooking background is limited, at home it was typically the same meal routine: cereal, dry sandwich (bread and two slices of lunch meat), and dinner was a chicken breast, small baked potato, and a vegetable. Those things can get bland after several years! My mom was convinced eating healthy was too expensive, so we didn't see a lot of veggies/fruits. My boyfriend is used to more variety in dinnertime meals so I want to learn more about some great ingredients and dishes, but I'm a little overwhelmed at where to start. There are so many vegetables (or things we commonly refer to as vegetables) I've never worked with, I only have been working with peas, corn, carrots, spinach, broccoli, asparagus, onions, and potatoes.

Basically what I am asking you guys is what vegetables are you in love with? What kind of great things do you use them for? Any ones you consider really versatile and great in almost any dish? What about ones good for snacks? On a non-vegetable note, what do you guys like to do for snacks? We've been thinking about making home-made trail mix or maybe looking into veggie crisps.. things like that! most importantly are they reasonable on the wallet (whether it's when they're in season, or if they're pretty affordable year-round).
__________________
PAX South 2016:
Zia (Bastion)
A-Kon 2016:
Princess Yona (Yona of the Dawn)
Kiki (Kiki's Delivery Service)
Kiramay is offline   Reply With Quote
 
Unread 09-15-2015, 08:06 PM   #2
5kyMarshall
The Sky's The Limit
 
5kyMarshall's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 104
These are what I use for snacks/ inbetween meals coming up to summer.

BROCOLLI
My current snack replacement. I zap it in the microwave, mix up seasoning used and it's quick and easy. I usually buy them every second day so they are fresh as possible and they are cheap.

TUNA IN SPRINGWATER
I get a ton of them on special which will be around US$0.50. By itself or with salad.

MUESLI / NUTS
Self explained. But these can get expensive, yes.

I try avoid bread completely.
5kyMarshall is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 09-15-2015, 11:47 PM   #3
guardianterra
Registered User
 
guardianterra's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 169
You are starting in the right season for trying out new veggies most are coming to market and if you can find it a local farmers market you will have all sorts of fresh options. Not to mention they will be on sale, a boon to any small budget.

I personally like Okra it can be an acquired taste but if you like it I can recommend eating it raw with a ranch dip, roasted again with the ranch rip. I have found it dried like a chip at whole foods. Toss it in a red bean and rice box mix with some sausage and you have dinner.

Yellow Squash and Zucchini. That is a staple in my house you can grill it, pan fry it with herbs and olive oil. You can make stuffed Zucchini or mix and toss with Couscous and herbs and a dollop of greek yougurt.

Eggplant. Need to replace a meat meal Eggplant is your answer. Eggplant Parmesan I used to cut it in to chunks mix with beef or turkey and a curry and Greek Yogurt. Made a fast dinner that I would eat over the week as it made a lot.

If you haven't tried get a spaghetti squash. Cut it in half add some butter and roast. You can add tomato sauce or just some butter salt and pepper. Acorn and Butternut are amazing too and when you scoop them out add butter, splurge on some maple syrup or just use brown sugar, sprinkle on nutmeg, ginger, cinnamon for amazing side. This also freezes well so you can make a HUGE batch and then pull it out as needed. It also can make a good breakfast >__>;;

Also try swapping out a Yam or sweet potato to add some spice to a go to meal.
I also like regular potatoes for lunch, I usually add cheese, taco sauce and Greek yogurt and if we have it some shredded chicken. Also try using the microwave to bake them if you haven't cuts time from hours to minutes. Try them with bacon, as a soup, mashed, smashed (get the little red guys for this) with a drizzle of olive oil.

Cauliflower is another go to for raw snacking or you can steam it and add cheese, it can be riced down in to a bread or just roasted. My mother in law got it to taste like shrimp by steaming it with old bay seasoning.

Grape Tomatoes are like candy and make an amazing snack. Bananas are a must for snacks quick simple and cheep. Check out the bulk bins too there is a plethora of dried fruits there that you can buy in small amounts to see if you like them or make your own trail mix with.

Pick up this book Amazing meals that are simple and easy to get on the table.
Also invest in a good lunch box and some blue ices that way you open up your options on what you can bring to school
__________________
Anime NebrasKon 2015: Staff Shirt of AMAZING

Dragon 2015;
Elemental Dragon/Faerie thing
Steampunks
guardianterra is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 09-16-2015, 11:34 AM   #4
nathancarter
Victor Voyeur Photography
 
nathancarter's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 1,322
You don't always have to get your protein from meat (especially boring ol' chicken breast).

Rice and beans together make an inexpensive complete protein. You can make up a lot and it'll last for a few days, travel and reheat well. There are a zillion different variations - Cuban style yellow rice and black beans; red beans and rice with onion and celery; Spanish-style with tomatoes; bean and rice soup. Man, I want some beans and rice right now.

Watch grocery store sales for the frozen "steamers" vegetables. When they're buy-1-get-1-free, stock up on a lot and fill up your freezer with them. They're easy and inexpensive, and pretty healthy.

Sweet potatoes are one of my favorite nutritious vegetables. Roasted/baked, an hour in a 400 degree oven, then served simply with salt and a little butter. Again, these reheat pretty well so you can make a bunch at once and have them for a couple days.

As far as fresh vegetables, I usually go with whatever's on sale.

Just don't drown your vegetables in cheese and ranch dressing and sugar.
__________________

http://flickr.com/nathancarter
https://www.facebook.com/VictorVoyeur
MetroCon - CONjure - Dragon Con - MegaCon
nathancarter is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 09-16-2015, 03:58 PM   #5
Ray-El
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 88
Smoothies. You can make them with just about anything. Buy fresh fruits and veggies and then freeze them before they go bad and use the frozen ones in place of ice. I love berry/mango flavors, but for a quick meal replacement, peanut butter with greek yogurt, a banana, and some vanilla ice cream is awesome.
Ray-El is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 09-16-2015, 11:14 PM   #6
Kiramay
Filthy Casual
 
Kiramay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 113
Frozen veggie bags are the best <3 We often pick up a mixed veggie bag for chicken pot pie or stir fries.
I worry about veggies for snacks - I don't have much of an enjoyment for plain veggies! I could only ever enjoy carrots raw with ranch dressing. Thankfully I haven't yet figured out how to get vegetables cheesy without buying them in a freezer bag like that (aka cheese is kind of expensive). We've been thinking of making hummus a regular snack, maybe that'll be an okay way to enjoy some veggies.
Microwave potatoes are the only way I've ever done them 'baked,' it was how my family always did them - for the longest time I had no idea people waited foreeeeever for oven baked! If they go into the oven, they're diced and seasoned.
I've never done beans and rice of any variety - we always have white rice in the house but I've never tried doing anything besides using it as a bed for mixed veggies and chicken. I'll have to look up some recipes for the dishes mentioned here.
__________________
PAX South 2016:
Zia (Bastion)
A-Kon 2016:
Princess Yona (Yona of the Dawn)
Kiki (Kiki's Delivery Service)
Kiramay is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 09-17-2015, 12:17 AM   #7
Ichigogami
Strawberry paper...DEATH
 
Ichigogami's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 1,149
Another way to stretch your budget for food stuffs is to plan meals in advance. I like to make things like spaghetti sauce then the next day make it into sloppy joes or chili for another meal...

We also buy in bulk when we can because most proteins can be frozen for a relatively long time. We put them together in servings in ziplock bags when we get home after shopping. usually 2 chicken breasts per bag. 1/3 a lb of ground turkey...etc.

I would also recommend checking out if you have a local asian or hispanic market. as sometimes they will have good fish for relatively cheap. Salmon is now something we eat and we're able to get 1-2 servings out of one package. Then if I've flavored the leftovers I make Brownrice Onigiri as a treat and quick lunch bite the following day.
__________________
Anime USA 2015...Halloween!
Steven Universe- Rose Quartz Gown version
Evangelion- Asuka Langley Soryu Yellow Sunddress
Magic Night Raye Earth- Ferio Yellow Shirt Version

Katsucon 2016...February
Yuri Kuma Arashi- Kureha Bear Form
Yuri Kuma Arashi- Kureha OR Lulu School Outfit

Nipponcon 2016..March
Artist's Alley Hopeful....We'll See

Awesome Con 2016
Deadpool/X-men Comics- Siryn...not sure which version yet...
DC Comics- Raven Either Teen Titans or Original Comics version....
Ichigogami is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 09-17-2015, 10:14 AM   #8
nathancarter
Victor Voyeur Photography
 
nathancarter's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 1,322
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ichigogami View Post
Another way to stretch your budget for food stuffs is to plan meals in advance. I like to make things like spaghetti sauce then the next day make it into sloppy joes or chili for another meal...
Also a great point. Scour the flyer for your supermarket(s) of choice, see what's on sale, plan a week of meals based on that.

One of my favorites is a large whole chicken.
Day 1 - whole roast chicken, rice/potatoes with gravy, green vegetable side (broccoli, lima beans, green beans)
Day 2 - Use some parts of that leftover chicken in some recipe - chicken salad, shredded chicken tacos, etc
Day 3 - toss the remainder of the whole chicken in a big pot, simmer it down, use the meat and stock to make a huge batch of chicken and dumplings or a big chicken pot pie
Day 4 - leftover chicken & dumplings or chicken pot pie

That's maybe $20-30 for four days. A big whole chicken is $6-10 on sale, then the veggies and flour and other staples will be another $10-20.
__________________

http://flickr.com/nathancarter
https://www.facebook.com/VictorVoyeur
MetroCon - CONjure - Dragon Con - MegaCon
nathancarter is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 09-17-2015, 12:40 PM   #9
Kiramay
Filthy Casual
 
Kiramay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by nathancarter View Post
Also a great point. Scour the flyer for your supermarket(s) of choice, see what's on sale, plan a week of meals based on that.

One of my favorites is a large whole chicken.
I've never cooked a whole chicken before. We don't have a big roasting pan or a big pot to later simmer it down in (or a thermometer), so that might be something to work up to after a few Christmas gifts xD I used to looooove the left over chicken pickings!!! Good for just about anything, and boy of boy do I LOVE chicken pot pie.
__________________
PAX South 2016:
Zia (Bastion)
A-Kon 2016:
Princess Yona (Yona of the Dawn)
Kiki (Kiki's Delivery Service)
Kiramay is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 09-17-2015, 11:59 PM   #10
nathancarter
Victor Voyeur Photography
 
nathancarter's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 1,322
I don't use a big roasting pan; I either do it in a cast-iron skillet or on a little grate sitting on top of said cast iron skillet. A full stainless-steel pan would work too, just nothing with plastic handles. I used to use a glass baking dish, but doing it right in the pan means I can make the gravy in that same pan once it comes out of the oven, one less thing to wash.
__________________

http://flickr.com/nathancarter
https://www.facebook.com/VictorVoyeur
MetroCon - CONjure - Dragon Con - MegaCon
nathancarter is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 09-18-2015, 05:40 PM   #11
guardianterra
Registered User
 
guardianterra's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 169
Skip the roasting pan go for a crockpot. I made my chicken in that last time and it came out amazing as it just fell off the bones. That and it cooked all day when we where at work so dinner was ready when we got home.

Honestly I pick up a mix for red beans and rice. Zatarain’s has been the go to when ever it is on sale as it usually makes enough for lunch and dinner.
__________________
Anime NebrasKon 2015: Staff Shirt of AMAZING

Dragon 2015;
Elemental Dragon/Faerie thing
Steampunks
guardianterra is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 09-20-2015, 01:39 PM   #12
Kiramay
Filthy Casual
 
Kiramay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by guardianterra View Post
Skip the roasting pan go for a crockpot. I made my chicken in that last time and it came out amazing as it just fell off the bones. That and it cooked all day when we where at work so dinner was ready when we got home.

Honestly I pick up a mix for red beans and rice. Zatarainís has been the go to when ever it is on sale as it usually makes enough for lunch and dinner.
We don't have a crockpot either! xD I had one back when I lived at home, but out in the world now we've only invested in a rice cooker with some Christmas cash!
__________________
PAX South 2016:
Zia (Bastion)
A-Kon 2016:
Princess Yona (Yona of the Dawn)
Kiki (Kiki's Delivery Service)
Kiramay is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 10-09-2015, 04:15 PM   #13
Desertfyre
Registered User
 
Desertfyre's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 21
To begin with I don't know how to break this too you, but if you want real food that's healthy and non-gmo, you will be spending money. It's just something you will have to work into your budget if that is what you are aiming for. Believe me I know how a trip to the grocery store can eat your money, but it's a decision you have to make. Personally, I will always cough up the money for good quality food. It's just non-negotiable for me.

That's where coupons come in. My mother does the grocery shopping and she's a coupon Queen. She knows when the sales are happening and will buy in bulk. She's a hawk eye when it comes to that.

I used to hate spinach but now I love it. And greens! Used to despise them but it's a staple now. Greens and rice with butter on it, all mixed in a bowl is delicious. We use a lot of zucchini as well. Eggplant. We do a lot of eggplant parmesan and indian eggplant. In my house we don't eat beef (that's a whole convo right there). We eat turkey, chicken and fish. Recently we stop frying everything and now baked catfish, let me tell you, it's delicious.

Since last year, I was sick of our usual food and started looking into other recipes. I'm a HUGE fan of Indian food now. We have built our own Indian spice collection and I've done things from Indian eggs to lamb curry.

I'm not a snack person, persay but I try to eat cashews or something not junk. Although when I feel the need to be junky, I be junky. We have a rule in our house. If you feel it, do it and get it over with and then get back to basics. It has worked well for everyone and we have all lost weight.

Sorry for this ridiculously long post. Oh, and before I forget, I have done recipes based on other recipes and you can check them out here if you want a place to start: http://youshouldreallytalkmore.tumbl...od-photography
(And we use a lot veggies in our dinner meals)

As for trying not to get overwhelmed with recipes, you should break them down. Do you want breakfast, lunch or dinner? What meat are you interested in for the moment? Look at the photo and the ingredients....can I make this without buying everything on the list? Kinda more helpful then starting at the beginning of a recipe book or site.

Hope that is reasonably helpful.
Desertfyre is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 10-25-2015, 10:56 PM   #14
Mangochutney
probably a frackpants
 
Mangochutney's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 6,584
With a rice cooker you can make really great red beans and rice! Pop in a cup of rice, a can of beans, and a can of tomatoes (both undrained). Stick in a boullion cube or two, some spices of whatever sort you like, and set it to cook. You can even add cut-up carrots or peppers or garlic or whatever you like. It won't be done the first time the lever pops; you'll have to stir it and set it to cook again at least once. My rice cooker usually takes three rounds before the rice is done, but I don't have to tend it or do anything and when it's done, it's a nice big pot of sturdy, tasty food. It reheats beautifully, too!
__________________
*
Workin' on:
Tom Petty [Final Fantasy XV] (9%)
Bondage Finch [Bondage Finch Adventures] (12%)
Your Mother [Debbie Does Dallas XXIII] (8%)
Mangochutney is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 10-27-2015, 07:28 PM   #15
trinityangel
Registered User
 
trinityangel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiramay View Post
We don't have a crockpot either! xD I had one back when I lived at home, but out in the world now we've only invested in a rice cooker with some Christmas cash!
Not sure where you are located, but check out goodwill or local thrift shops for pans and cook ware. Just saw a good crock pot yesterday for 5 bucks at our local goodwill.

Also, since no one has mentioned it, quinoa (pronounce keen-wah) is a GREAT source of complete protein and can be added almost to any dish, also really cheap.

And you can find recipes that only have a small amount of ingredients to use (most of mine need 5 or less).
Use spices and herbs for flavoring (also healthy and 0 cals), its cheaper for instance to make your own taco and chili spice mixes than to buy them pre packaged, and all you have to do is combine spices

I am a self taught cook as well, before, i could cook scrambled eggs and that was it. Now, with the help of the internet, i can make a lot of different things. So dont be afraid to try. Look for recipes and how to videos. treat it like another cosplay skill
trinityangel is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:43 AM.


Copyright 2002-2016 Cosplay.com, LLC. All Rights Reserved.
All comments and posts in our forums are the opinion of the respective poster.