9 Protein-Rich Food That Are Absolutely Budget Friendly

Maintaining a protein-rich diet is essential for your overall health and well-being. Proteins are the building blocks of our bodies, playing a crucial role in repairing tissues, supporting muscle growth, and boosting our immune system. However, many people believe that a protein-rich diet is expensive and unaffordable. Fear not! We have compiled a list of nine protein-rich food options that are not only nutritious but also friendly to your budget. From the most affordable to the slightly costlier options, let's explore these protein powerhouses and their prices that won't break the bank.

Eggs (₹5-6 per egg)

Eggs are an excellent and affordable source of protein. Packed with essential amino acids, vitamins, and minerals, eggs are a versatile ingredient that can be enjoyed in various ways. Whether you prefer them boiled, scrambled, or in an omelette, eggs offer approximately 6 grams of protein per egg at an incredibly low price.

Lentils (₹40-50 per kg)

Lentils are a staple in Indian households due to their high protein content and affordability. They come in different varieties such as red lentils (masoor dal), green lentils (moong dal), and black lentils (urad dal). With an average protein content of 24 grams per 100 grams, lentils are not only budget-friendly but also rich in fibre, minerals, and antioxidants.

Chickpeas (₹60-70 per kg)

Chickpeas, also known as garbanzo beans, are an economical protein source that can be enjoyed in various dishes. Whether you use them to make a hearty chana masala or blend them into creamy hummus, chickpeas provide around 19 grams of protein per 100 grams. They are also high in fibre, folate, and manganese, making them a nutritious addition to your diet.

Yoghurt (₹30-40 per kg)

Yoghurt is not only a delicious and nutritious snack but also a great source of protein. It contains probiotics that promote a healthy gut and improves digestion. With an average protein content of 6 grams per 100 grams, yoghurt is an affordable option that can be enjoyed on its own, blended into smoothies, or used as a base for dressings and dips.

Tofu (₹60-70 per kg)

Tofu, made from soybeans, is a highly versatile and economical source of plant-based protein. It is an excellent option for vegetarians and vegans. Tofu offers around 8 grams of protein per 100 grams and can be used in stir-fries, curries, soups, and even desserts. Its mild taste allows it to absorb the flavours of the dishes it's cooked with.

Chicken Breast (₹150-200 per kg)

Chicken breast is a lean protein option that provides approximately 31 grams of protein per 100 grams. While it may be slightly costlier than the previous options, it is still a budget-friendly choice for meat lovers. Chicken breast can be baked, grilled, or sautéed, offering a versatile protein option for various recipes.

Cottage Cheese (Paneer) (₹200-250 per kg)

Cottage cheese, or paneer, is a popular protein-rich food in Indian cuisine. It is made by curdling milk and pressing the curds into a solid form. With approximately 18 grams of protein per 100 grams, paneer offers a satisfying and affordable protein option. It can be incorporated into curries, salads, or simply enjoyed as a healthy snack.

Fish (₹200-250 per kg)

Fish, such as mackerel, sardines, or catfish, provides an affordable source of high-quality protein. It is also rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which are beneficial for heart health. With an average protein content of 20-25 grams per 100 grams, fish can be baked, grilled, or pan-fried to create delicious and nutritious meals.

Quinoa (₹300-350 per kg)

Quinoa is a slightly costlier protein option but still worth considering due to its remarkable nutritional profile. It is a complete protein, containing all essential amino acids required by our bodies. Quinoa offers approximately 14 grams of protein per 100 grams and is a versatile grain that can be used in salads, pilafs, and as a substitute for rice.

Eating a protein-rich diet doesn't have to be expensive. With these nine affordable and nutritious options, you can meet your protein needs without compromising your budget. Incorporate eggs, lentils, chickpeas, cottage cheese, yoghurt, chicken breast, tofu, fish, and quinoa into your meals to enjoy the benefits of protein while keeping your wallet happy. Remember, a balanced diet that includes a variety of protein sources is essential for your overall health.