Budget-Friendly Ideas for Nourishing (and Easy!) Postpartum Recovery Food

What you eat after giving birth can significantly support your recovery process. But, in our post-Covid world, everything is more expensive, especially food. Here’s how you can eat nutrient-dense foods on a budget.

I strongly believe there are several advocates for healing from having a baby, one of which is prioritizing nutritious food. The truth is that quality food is expensive and out of reach for manybut there are plenty of ways to get the nutrition you need through simple, budget-friendly hacks and meals.

Plus, feeding yourself can feel overwhelming after birth, and sometimes the added pressure to “eat the right thing” can feel overwhelming.

A holistic approach to postpartum recovery

I believe the important steps for recovery are:

  1. Nourish: focus on filling your body with foods that fuel and heal.
  2. Recover: allowing your body to return to exercise and physical activity.
  3. Add again: prioritizing your mental health and making enough time to find things you enjoy outside of motherhood.

Basically, know that you are reborn and should know how to accept the new version of yourself. All of this takes TIME.

The period after birth is a crazy and busy time in a family’s life. You study every day and go through new challenges continuous. This often leads to moms focusing on quick, easy-to-get food without thinking about what they need to eat to be properly nourished.

And it gets more complicated.

When moms are ready to get their health back, some see some of the high prices of fresh produce and meat and think they can’t afford it.

Instead of stressing over whether or not you can eat to take care of your post-baby body, use these tips that you can take to your grocery store and buy healthy food on a budget.

clear glass jars filled with cereals

Food shopping for postpartum recovery on a budget

Check out some budget-friendly alternatives for buying healthy, nutritious food for postpartum recovery. Remember that these tips are great for all stages of life, not just life after birth.

  1. Buy fresh seasonal produce
  2. Consider frozen fruits and vegetables
  3. Try the canned product
  4. Explore other sources of protein
  5. Buy whole grains in bulk

1. Buy produce when it’s in season

If you want fresh fruits and vegetables but don’t want to spend a lot of money, check what produce is in season per month for your area.

These in-season fruits and vegetables are usually cheaper at grocery stores than out-of-season produce. You can also try shop at local farmers markets (ideally, send someone to shop for you).

2. Frozen fruits and vegetables are a great alternative to fresh

One study compared the vitamin content between fresh and frozen corn, carrots, broccoli, spinach, peas, green beans, strawberries, and blueberries. The study found that fixed options are “comparable to and occasionally higher vitamin content” than fresh options.

3. Try canned fruits and vegetables

For this one, you’ll need to check the ingredients list on the can before purchasing. Sometimes fruits will do add sweet sauce to preserve the fruit. Make sure they contain the fruit or vegetable listed on the label.

4. Explore other sources of protein

If you’re not on a meat-free diet, occasionally having plant protein will give you the same nutritional benefits protein-wise as meat-based protein.

Examples of plant-protein on a budget:

– Beans (contains about 15g of protein per cup)
– Lentils (contains about 18g of protein per cup)
– Canned tuna
– Cottage cheese

If you are vegetarian or vegan, make sure you are eat a variety of plant-based proteins to get the essential amino acids you need.

5. Buy whole grains in bulk

Don’t skip or cut back on your carbs. They are nutrients needed in your diet, especially during postpartum recovery. Eliminating them from your diet will NOT help you lose weight faster.

See also

changes in the mother's body after childbirth

Buying grain in bulk is more economical rather than the volume of a container (for example, oats/oatmeal).

Sometimes I’ll make my grains for the week and portion them out for each meal, which saves me an extra step in the kitchen during the week.

introducing the postpartum nutrition book with a shop now button

A healthy postpartum meal on a budget

Below is a balanced diet does not require any fresh ingredients. This dish is quick to make and budget-friendly.

Additionally, you can buy ingredients ahead of time and make them when you want, unlike fresh ingredients. Making this meal will do costs about $2.87 per serving (taxes and prices of items will vary depending on location).


  • 2 15oz cans of black beans ($1.58)
  • 1 20 oz bag of peppers and onions ($2.72)
  • 1 16 oz bag of brown rice and quinoa ($4.72)
  • 1 cup bone broth ($1.22)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil ($.27)
  • Taco Seasoning ($.95)

Cooking instructions:

  1. Add olive oil and frozen vegetables to a large skillet over medium heat. Cook until the vegetables begin to soften.
  2. Add everything to the pan. Boil.
  3. Once the filling is bubbling, lower the heat to simmer for about 10 minutes or until the rice and quinoa are fully cooked. Then serve.

Final thoughts about postpartum feeding

Good nutritional habits can be the difference in how you recover and regain your health after giving birth. Hopefully these tips will help give you peace of mind that you can still meet your nutritional needs even on a tight budget.

Other postpartum nutrition articles you may enjoy

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Kristen Beach

I am a Postpartum Health Coach who supports new moms through postpartum by guiding them on how to refuel and nourish their bodies. While also taking time to recover to help them find their post-baby identity again.

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