Now that speaking out about food allergies, sensitivities and restrictions has become more ‘mainstream’, there’s a lot more choice for those of us who have them. On the one hand, that’s a good thing because, well, more choice. But on the other hand, there are increasingly many expensive AF options out there.
I’ve been living dairy free for almost a year now, and I’ve learned quite a few things about how to manage this lifestyle. So, today, I wanted to share some more dairy free eating tips with you, specifically how to eat dairy free without breaking the bank.
1. Make it at home
Cooking at home is a great general money saving tip. But it’s especially important when you have food restrictions. Although most food places have dairy free options now, they’re almost always more expensive. For things that I wouldn’t make at home anyway, dairy free or not, I don’t mind spending the extra. But the markup for even basic things can be a bit obscene so making my dairy free goodies at home is probably my biggest tip.
2. Go easy on the ‘cheese’
Since cheese is one of the things I missed most from my dairy eating days, I went a little crazy with the cheese alternatives in the beginning. But, not only are those cheese substitutes highly processed, they can also put a huge dent in your grocery bill. And considering that most dairy free cheeses don’t actually taste or behave anything like actual cheese, it usually isn’t worth it in my opinion. So, although I still buy ‘cheese’ on occasion, it’s definitely not a regular thing.
3. Buy in Bulk
Buying in bulk is actually one of my money saving tips for grocery shopping in general. But it definitely applies here as well. Many ingredients used in dairy free cooking and baking can be quite expensive, especially when compared with their dairy filled counterparts. So stocking up when there’s a sale is generally a good idea.
Some things I buy in bulk include almond milk, coconut milk, coconut oil and dairy free chocolate chips.
4. Buy Generic
Like I mentioned at the beginning of the post, there are a lot of options now when it comes to finding dairy free alternatives. Unfortunately, most of them are hella expensive because you often end up paying for the brand name. When you’re first starting out in your dairy free lifestyle, it may be tempting to shell out a lot of money for ‘the best’. But for many things, generic or store brands can be just as good.
What about you?
- Are you dairy free or have any other food restrictions?
- What tips and tricks do you have for eating dairy free on a budget? (or any other food restrictions)
What more Dairy Free Eating tips? Get the Guide!
More healthy substitutions: