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It’s not always easy to eat healthy on food stamps. That much has been proven by many food stamp challenges across the nation. It’s actually incredibly difficult to eat organic, too. However, there are some foods that are healthy and cheap, and you can cook them in a variety of ways. Buying these inexpensive food items, you can use money saved to compliment these dishes or stock up on seeds to plant fresh vegetables and cultivate your own garden. The following five foods were found to be the cheapest at the grocery store and incredibly versatile.

1. Multi-Grain or Whole Wheat Pasta

Pasta is one of the most versatile staples in a diet, especially if you love macaroni and cheese or spaghetti. However, it isn’t always the healthiest choice. There are healthier choices of pasta that are still cheap and can offer you more nutrients. Whole wheat pasta is incredibly good for you while not being extremely hard on the budget. You can also find that a variety of pastas are made with whole-wheat or multi-grain, including angel hair, spaghetti, linguine, farfalle, lasagna and more.

2. Brown Rice

Rice is a great way to compliment any main entrée. Brown rice is much healthier than white rice, and you can use it with the same ingredients to create a nice side dish. Brown rice also contains many of the nutrients that are stripped from white rice, including vitamin B, B6 and iron. You can usually purchase brown rice for under $2 at any supermarket.

3. Potatoes

Since there are so many ways to cook potatoes, they are an asset to any chef, and you can make them healthier than you think. Baking potatoes is just one way to make a healthy side dish. Potatoes also contain B6, potassium, vitamin C, manganese and copper. There are also all different types of potatoes, and even healthier types, such as sweet potatoes. You can usually find a bag of regular potatoes for under $3.

4. Frozen Vegetables

Most generic brand and store brand frozen vegetables are available for under $2 and you get a lot for the money. There are also several different types of vegetables and mixed vegetables that you can find in the frozen food section. Whether you want something with broccoli and cauliflower or peas and carrots. They can also last for a long time in your freezer. It’s a great way to create a well-rounded meal on a budget.

5. Canned Tuna

Tuna can be made in several different ways and you can make lots of food for leftovers with one can of tuna. For example, tuna macaroni salad can become lunch for three or more days, and you can also make tuna casserole, tuna sandwiches or tuna tetrazzini. You can get omega-3 essential fatty acids, protein, vitamins like B1 and B6, and selenium from one can of tuna as well. While there are different varieties of tuna, you can usually find that brands sell it for under or near $1.

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