4 Easy & Tasty Ideas For Low-Carb Meals on a Budget

Rachel | Rachel Resets
by Rachel | Rachel Resets

Eating low-carb meals on a budget can be tough. I'm making four different budget-friendly low-carb meals using mostly fresh veggies for just under $10. But I’ll keep these meals low-carb, high in protein, and high in flavor.

If you’re on a tight budget, cabbage is really the way to go because it gives you a lot of bulk without adding a lot of higher-carb foods. These meals serve one person on average.

Low carb on a budget grocery list from Walmart

Low carb on a budget grocery list from Walmart:

  • Green cabbage - $1.75
  • Avocado- $0.78
  • White onion - $0.53
  • 28 oz. diced tomatoes - $1.36
  • Great Value sausage - $2.32
  • Whole carrots - $0.98
  • 6 eggs - $2.36

TOTAL = $10.08 ($2.02 per serving)

*Prices as of December 2022


SeasoningsI used a few freebies, such as soy sauce, sesame seed oil, cumin, smoked paprika, chili powder, garlic powder, and parsley flakes. Even if you don’t have all of these spices, your dishes can still be flavorful.

Shredding carrots


I started off by prepping for all the meals, such as shredding and dicing the carrots, onions, and cabbage.

Slicing cabbage

I took off about eight leaves of cabbage to use as bowls to hold food. I thinly sliced half of the cabbage and the rest I cut into small pieces. 

Cabbage rolls


  • 3 large cabbage leaves 
  • 1/3 cup raw sausage 
  • 1 cup shredded carrots 
  • 1 egg (to help hold it together since there’s no rice)
  • 1/2 cup diced tomatoes in tomato juice 
  • 1/2 cup water 
  • 1/4 teaspoon parsley 
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder 
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder 
  • 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika 
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin 
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt 
Spooning mixture into a cabbage leaf


Optional: Blanch the cabbage leaves first in boiling water for a few seconds to soften them up a bit.

In a bowl, mix the spices and reserve half for the sauce. With half of the spice mixture, add the egg, carrots, and sausage and mix. Spoon mixture and roll cabbage leaf up.

Rolling up cabbage leaf

Spoon 1/4 cup of the mixture into each cabbage leaf and roll and wrap the mixture until the leaf fully covers it. 

Placing rolled cabbage leaves in a pan

Place the rolled leaves in a shallow pan or pot and put it on your stovetop. Pour tomatoes, water, and the rest of the spices on top of the cabbage rolls.

Carefully stir the sauce mixture and be careful not to disturb or unroll the cabbage rolls. Place the lid on the pan and allow it to steam for 10 minutes or until the cabbage is soft, and tender, and the sausage is cooked.

Cabbage rolls

Plate them up and add the sauce that should have slightly thickened. 

Taco bowl


  • 1 large cabbage leaf 
  • 1/2 cup sausage 
  • 1/2 cup diced tomatoes 
  • 1 tablespoon oil 
  • 1/4 cup onions diced 
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin 
  • 2 tablespoons taco seasoning 
  • Slices of avocado to garnish and shredded carrot optional
Cooking onion and sausage


Pour oil in a pan and heat on your stovetop. Add onion and sausage and cook, stirring frequently until cooked through. Add taco seasoning and cumin (it bumps up the flavor) plus diced tomatoes and stir. 

Once the tomatoes have softened, pour the mixture into a cabbage leaf "bowl.”

Taco bowls

Top with slices of avocado and shredded carrots. Sour cream would be great as a topper.

Egg roll in a bowl


  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil 
  • 1/3 cup diced onions 
  • 3 cups sliced cabbage 
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce 
  • 1/2 cup shredded carrots 
  • 2 fried eggs 
  • 1/4 cup sausage 
  • 1/2 cup water 
  • 1 tablespoon oil 
  • 3 slices of avocado (for garnish)

For this egg roll in a bowl, it’s key to have the sesame oil for the right flavor. Plus, I know eggs have gone up in price but you can still find them at Dollar Tree, 6 for $1.25.


Heat the sesame oil in a pan and add the diced onions and sausage. 

Adding cabbage to cook

Once cooked through, add cabbage to wilt.

Cabbage mixture

Add in water, carrots, and soy sauce. Stir and saute for 15 minutes. Pour the cooked mixture in a cabbage “bowl.” 

Topping egg roll in a bowl with eggs

In a small pan, fry two eggs in 1 tablespoon of oil, add salt and pepper to taste. Place eggs in the cabbage mixture. Garnish with avocado and serve.

Shakshuka (serves 2)

This is a North African/Middle Eastern dish that’s typically eaten for breakfast but I’m making it for lunch or dinner. This actually made a lot more than just two servings.


  • 1/4 cup sausage 
  • 2 tablespoons chopped onions 
  • 1 cup carrots cut into matchsticks 
  • 1 cup diced tomatoes 
  • 1 cup chopped cabbage 
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin 
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder 
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika 
  • 12 thinly sliced onion rings as optional garnish 
  • 3 eggs 
  • 1/2 cup water 
  • Salt and pepper to taste 
Cooking sausage and onions


In a pan, heat sausage and chopped onions until cooked. Add carrots, tomatoes, cabbage, garlic powder, paprika, cumin, salt, pepper, and water. Mix, then cover with a lid and let it steam for 15 minutes.

Cracking eggs on the top

Uncover and crack the three eggs on top. 

Topping shakshuka with onion rings

Top with onion rings. 

Low-carb meals on a budget

Uncover and serve. As an option, garnish with avocado and chopped parsley.

Low-carb meals on a budget

I loved making healthy, low-carb dishes that look visually appealing. I used the paprika to get that beautiful orange color and parsley flakes for an extra visual flair. Comment below if these budget low-carb meals look good to you. 

Join the conversation
  • Diane sterner Diane sterner on Jan 27, 2023

    so you think that 1/8 or 1/4 cup of meat is enough for how many servings?

    • Robin Robin on Jan 29, 2023

      I had to read it twice. The recipes are for single servings.