From Planet Green...

5 Superfoods For Under $20 (And How To Prepare Them)

kale local superfood photo Photo: Comstock Images

1. Kale
At just over a dollar a bunch, kale is a member of the dark, leafy greens group. It's loaded with vitamin C and vitamin B as well as calcium. Want to relieve depression? Eat kale.

Emeril's Sauteed Kale

2. Broccoli
This low cost cruciferous vegetable has it all. Cruciferous vegetables are known for a compound that neutralizes toxins in the liver and helps cleanse the system.

Broccoli Stir Fry

3. Winter Squash
Winter squash is only a few dollars a pound and when compared to the summer squash variety, it's much better for you. They're a good source of vitamin B6, which is important for the nervous and immune system, as well as folate for heart and pregnancy health.

Butternut Squash Orzo

4. Sweet Potatoes

sweet potato pancake seasonal superfoods inexpensive foods photo
Photo: Sara Novak

Sweet, savory, and downright delicious, nothing beats this winter staple. Sweet potatoes are loaded with fiber, protein, vitamin A, and vitamin C.

Sweet Potato Pancakes

5. Cabbage
Roger Doiron says, "what cabbage lacks in sex appeal and trendiness it makes up for in dependability and productivity." He's right. Cabbage is cheap and just like broccoli, it's a cruciferous super veggie.

Braised Purple Cabbage with Goat Cheese

6. Apples
Apples are our best foodie friends. Sweet, tangy, crunchy, and low in calories, apples have fiber and tons of phytochemicals or antioxidants that serve to fight free radicals in the body that cause disease and aging.

Chopped Brussels Sprouts with Walnuts, Green Apple, and Pecorino

7. Quinoa
At $1 a pound quinoa is cheap and nutrient dense. Quinoa is a complete protein and can substitute for less sustainable proteins. Compared to other grains, quinoa is higher in calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, potassium, iron, copper, manganese, and zinc.

Emeril's Quinoa With Butternut Squash

8. Brown Basmati Rice
Talk about cheap, rice is one of the least expensive foods in the world. At just a few dollars a pound, a little goes a long way. I also love brown basmati rice, It's an excellent source of manganese and a good source of the minerals selenium and magnesium.

Sweet Potato Red Curry with Baby Bok Choy and Tofu and Brown Basmati Rice

9. Barley

Photo: Sara Novak

Barley is one of my favorite grains. The little bubbles burst in your mouth, full of flavor. Barley is rich in manganese, selenium, phosphorus, copper, magnesium, iron, zinc and potassium.

Ayurvedic Kitchari

10. Adzuki Beans
Beans are one of the least expensive protein sources. In fact, these little guys contain some of the highest levels of protein and the lowest levels of fat of any variety of beans. They also contain high levels of potassium, fiber, B vitamins, iron, zinc, and manganese.

Easy, Cheesy Upscale Nachos For a Snack

11. Black Beans
This is an obvious one, but no less important. Black beans are a good source of folate, dietary fiber, manganese, protein, magnesium, vitamin B1 (thiamin), phosphorus, and iron.

Butternut Squash and Black Bean Chili

12. Flaxseed
Omega 3 fatty acids are an ever important building block nutrient that like B12, the body cannot produce on its own. Don’t worry because you can get the nutrient without fatty fish. Instead, get it from flaxseed.

Emeril's Whole Wheat and Buckwheat Chicago Style Pizza with FlaxSeeds (Video)

13. Sunflower Seeds

sunflower seeds vegetarian health nutrition
Photo: Creatas Images

Sunflower seeds are one of the least expensive seeds that you can buy in bulk and if you buy the raw variety, they're quite good for you as well. Sunflower seeds have 76 percent of the RDA for vitamin E.

A Healthy Alternative: Sunflower Seed Falafels

14. Sesame Seeds
Great for sprinkling on all your favorite Asian dishes, who knew that they were so good for you? Again, a little goes a long way with this one. You don't need a whole lot to absorb the benefits. Sesame seeds are rich in calcium and magnesium. Who knew?

Weekday Vegetarian: Vegan Napa Cabbage and Sesame Slaw

15. Almonds

Photo: Sara Novak

I saved the best for last. If you're not eating almonds, it's time to start. Almonds are good for heart health and loaded with vitamin E, an antioxidant that keeps you from aging.

Creamy Vegan Pumpkin Soup with Almond Milk

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