Look in any low-carb dieter’s fridge, and you’re bound to find tons of fresh proteins and vegetables—two things that are notoriously pricey. But that doesn’t mean he necessarily spent an arm and a leg stocking up for the week. With a bit of planning, it’s possible to craft low-carb, protein-packed lunches on the cheap, like, less than $6* cheap.

To show you how to pull it off, we scoured the aisles of a Whole Foods in New York City (where grocery prices tend to be high), chose a number of healthy staples, and crafted them into seven workweek lunches with fewer than 30g of carbs and at least 25g of protein. This way you can easily stay on track with our beginner bodybuilder’s meal plan.

In addition to showing you the total cost of each meal, we also broke down the recipes so you can see the cost of each ingredient based on our suggested serving size. This way if you decide to tweak the recipes to better satisfy your taste buds or macros, you can easily recalculate the dollars and cents.

*We assumed that standard pantry staples (such as spices and cooking oil) would already be in your kitchen. They were not used to calculate the total cost of these meals.


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