As a dietitian, I hear time and time again that healthy eating is too expensive. And these days, with food prices skyrocketing – at times out of alignment with inflation – it is getting harder to feed yourself well on a budget.

One of my first pieces of advice for eating well with less money is to eat more whole plant foods such as legumes and whole grains. Plant-based eating can seem expensive if you are drawn to plant-based meat substitutes or fancy superfood snacks. But legumes and grains, bought in bulk form, are staples the world over because they are nutrient-dense and affordable for most. 

But once you have these foods in your pantry…what do you do with them? Making delicious meals from these staples is not a skill that we all possess, depending on our culinary cultural backgrounds. 

Which is why this is the perfect time to talk to Toni Okamoto, powerhouse creator behind the blog Plant-based on Budget and author of the new cookbook Plant-based on a Budget: Quick and Easy. Toni’s simple, customizable recipes are proof that you can enjoy what you eat without spending a lot of money – or time in the kitchen! So I am delighted to welcome Toni to The Allsorts Podcast because she is the queen of making healthy eating happen on a budget.

Toni Okamoto of plant-based on a budget, on the allsorts podcast

About Toni Okamoto:

Toni Okamoto is the founder of Plant-Based on a Budget, the popular website and social media platform that teaches millions how to eat more plants without breaking their budget. She’s also the author of the forthcoming Plant-Based on a Budget Quick & Easy cookbook, and the co-host of The Plant-Powered People Podcast. Okamoto’s work has been profiled by NPR, NBC News, Parade, and she’s a regular presence on local and national morning shows across the country, where she teaches viewers how to break their meat habit without breaking their budget. She was also featured in the popular documentary What the Health. When she’s not cooking up a plant-based storm, she’s spending time with her husband and their rescued dog in Sacramento, CA.

On this episode we chat about:

  • Toni’s lightbulb moment that started her plant-based journey
  • Why plant-based eating is the opposite of restriction
  • A sneaky child-feeding trick that also works on adults
  • How Toni’s family inspired her to start her blog plant-based on a budget
  • Toni’s surprising tips for managing your grocery budget
  • The very un-rigid way Toni approaches meal planning 
  • Good idea alert: how to meal swap
  • Why a splurge item is actually important for saving money
  • A genius tip for learning how to play with flavour without wrecking your meal
  • How to navigate different eaters when you cook
  • Very specific tips for reducing food waste

Support the Pod!

We couldn’t make this podcast happen without the support of our amazing listeners.

I love hearing your feedback on these episodes to be sure to join the conversation on our instagram @theallsortspod @desireenielsenrd @plantbasedonabudget as well as in our Nutrition with Desiree community.

If you love this episode, please share it with your friends and family, or take a minute to rate, review or subscribe on your favourite podcast app. We appreciate EVERY. SINGLE. LISTEN!

Connect with Toni:


Instagram: @plantbasedonabudget

Tik Tok: @plantbasedonabudget

Episode Links + Recommendations:

Better than bouillon vegan concentrate

Carleigh Bodrug on The Allsorts Podcast