It’s no secret that things cost more these days. Nutritionists at GIANT say the first thing families tend to cut when they’re stretching their budget is protein. That’s why they’re reminding people that protein can be found outside the meat aisle.

“Eggs can be a very affordable, cost-effective protein,” nutritionist Shanna Shultz said. “They’re $1.69 a dozen, so coming out to about $.14 per egg. Eggs are going to give you about six grams of protein for one, so getting two to three of them at a meal can really help fill all of our bellies.”

Eggs support brain development, memory and can give you a mood boost. They also contain vitamins A and D.

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Nutritionists say you shouldn’t think of them only at breakfast. You can add hard-boiled eggs to salads for a protein boost, add scrambled eggs to taco night instead of ground meat, or make your own pancake mix using two eggs, half a cup of oats, and one banana. Nutritionists say it’s vital you still seek protein sources, even when trying to eat on a budget.

“Protein is really going to be essential for kids and adults to give us that satiety feeling that we want to stay full,” Shultz said. “We don’t want to be sending kids off to school on a hungry belly. They’re not able to focus well…and for adults, protein is very important for weight management as well as maintaining lean muscle mass.”

GIANT offers classes about how to eat healthy on a budget. For more information click here.

Some other less expensive sources of protein include peanut butter and canned beans, salmon, and tuna.