How I Save Money with Plant Based Batching
By Molly Patrick
Oct 7, 2022,
A while back, I was super sick for about 2 weeks.
Normally, I do most of the cooking in our house, but I didn’t cook at all during this time. The first week, my wife Luanne made Miso Soup and baked tofu. A friend also made us rice and beans, and my mom made Mac and Cheese and Italian Soup. I was so grateful for the food and the generosity of others.
Toward the end of the second week, I knew batching was still out of the question, but I felt well enough to go to the grocery store, where I bought a few frozen vegan and gluten-free meals.
One of those meals was red enchiladas, beans, and rice. It was pretty good for a frozen meal, and I was thankful for the ease of it. It was close to $7 per serving.
When I finally felt well enough to get in my kitchen the following week, I was stoked. Here’s what I made:
If you’re a Plant Fueled Life member, here’s the Magic Meal Plan if you want to save it. If you adjust the servings your grocery list and batching recipes will adjust accordingly. You can also switch to a list view for super easy viewing. Learn more about the nifty features of our Magic Meal Planner.
The evening after I batched, I decided to whip up an enchilada-style casserole, not unlike the frozen meal I’d purchased the previous week.
- I poured some canned green chili sauce on the bottom of a baking dish and added a layer of corn tortillas.
- Then, I spread out some canned vegetarian refried beans, a layer of kale, and a layer of the hash and the queso I’d made.
- I repeated these layers twice and poured the rest of the green chili with some extra queso on top.
- I covered the casserole and baked at 350°F for 25 minutes.
- When I was done, I had an entire plant based enchilada casserole I was excited about eating all week long.
This is the brilliance of batch cooking.
I was able to make an entire casserole dish of enchiladas for roughly the same price as just one frozen enchilada meal.
Yes, the frozen enchiladas I bought at the store served a purpose, but here’s the difference:
- The store-bought enchiladas were nowhere near as tasty as mine.
- My enchiladas had way more veggies.
- Mine were way more affordable.
- I knew every ingredient that went into my food.
- My enchiladas had way less packaging for the amount of food.
- And they were oil-free.
Not only did I make an entire casserole dish of enchiladas, I also made most of the components that I built the enchiladas with, which meant I had lots of leftovers of those items. Along with the enchiladas, I had lots of rice, queso, and veggie hash in my fridge, ready to eat when I got hungry. Hello, mid-week power bowl!
Sometimes frozen meals make sense, and I’m happy there are plant based options for those times. For all the other times, batch cooking is a game-changer.
You’re literally making your own convenience food, but it’s more
Plus, there’s a certain satisfaction when cooking your own meals, a satisfaction you will never get with pre-packaged food because you didn’t put in the work to make it happen.
If you want to save money with plant based batching, we can help
We even include grocery lists and prep instructions. All you have to do is decide how many servings you want of each meal and follow along. And if you prefer to make your own meal plan using our recipes like I did, we have a way for you to do that too!
Batch cooking plant based food is one of the most empowering things you can do for yourself. Unless of course you’re down for weeks with a cruddy flu. Then buying a few frozen meals feels pretty damn empowering.
If you have any questions about batch cooking or Plant Fueled Life, contact us or join our fabulous Facebook group.
Here are some awesome resources to get you on the road to saving money with batching/meal prep:
Fall in love with plant based cooking
Love the food that loves you back
Get instant access to thousands of plant based recipes and meal plans, no credit card or perfection required.