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2/7/12 11:28 A

Try this recipe: Mediterranean Chicken with Couscous. Delicious and cheap and makes a lot for leftovers.

M_SGIRL SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (379)
Posts: 124
2/6/12 5:14 P

Quick, tasty, delicious meals that are cheap are our go-to staples several times a week.

1. Homemade tomato basil bisque & veggie quesadillas. 2 large cans of low sodium crushed or diced tomatoes, 1 C chicken broth, 1 large onion diced, 6-8 cloves of garlic, 1 t butter, 2 T dried basil, 1 t cumin, 2 t garlic powder, 1 t lemon juice, 2 T sherry (optional), 1/4 C nonfat half & half. Saute onions & garlic in butter, add spices and reduce heat until fragrant. Simmer tomatoes, broth, and lemon juice. Season with garlic powder. Saute veggies and spread among tortillas. Top with cheese and pan sear.

2. Chili with beans. Saute 1 large onion, 5-6 cloves of garlic, 1 large carrot chopped fine, 2 large stalks of celery chopped fine, 1 bell pepper, and for extra nutrition 2 medium zuchinni. Add 2 T each cumin, chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, and 1 T garlic salt. Once aromatic, add 2 cans diced tomatoes, 2 cans unrinsed black beans, 1 1/2 C beef stock. Simmer for at least an hour, adding water as necessary. Season to taste, adding optional seasonings like hot sauce, liquid smoke, etc. to build flavor. The more veggies you use, the less you miss meat but ground meat CAN be added once sauteed. Serve with fresh scallions, cilantro, some low fat cheese, and/or light sour cream.

3. Quiche. A quick pie crust topped with your leftover scraps of meat and veggies, topped with a scrambled egg mixture, then cheese and baked until firm. My favorite incorporates dried basil, leftover pork, scallions, roasted garlic, and just enough really good cheese to add flavor.

4. Pork butt. A cheap cut of meat this works well in a variety of dishes from meat sauces for pasta, to pulled pork sandwiches, to quiche AFTER you get a hearty Sunday-style meal out of it. Rinse pork and dry. Trim off outside fat (it will have more inside to add tenderness). Rub with any dry spice (try equal amounts of chili powder, garlic salt, garlic powder, cumin, and dried basil). Toss in the oven for 30 minutes at 450, 30 minutes at 350, and a few hours on 250. Pork is done when a fork easily pulls the meat in strips (going with the grain).

RIET69 SparkPoints: (47,087)
Fitness Minutes: (11,285)
Posts: 3,116
2/6/12 3:02 P

You will love this! Make it cheaper and not any less tasty without chicken

Tortilla Soup Recipe

2 diced onions
5 or 6 diced celery
3 carrots
2 or 3 stems leeks (not part of original recipe, but I add this to all soups)
About 16 cups liquid (I usually use water, but can use chicken or vegetable stock)
A couple of tsps. chili powder
Dash of cumin (if you have it; just a little stronger than chili powder)
1 jar of any kind of salsa
2 large cans of diced tomatoes (this gives the soup enough salt for me)
Pepper to taste
1 bunch parsley
Chicken if desired

• If using chicken, use some of the water to poach till white, then cool and shred, set aside
• In a large pot, sauté onions, leeks, celery and carrots in small amount of olive oil for about 5 or ten minutes
• Add liquid, tomatoes, salsa, seasonings and let simmer for about 45 minutes
• Add chicken and chopped parsley and simmer for another 15 minutes

Serve with tortilla chips, shredded Mexican cheese, diced green chilies if desired

1STTOOHIASMOM SparkPoints: (40,707)
Fitness Minutes: (43,632)
Posts: 137
10/30/11 2:28 P

Last fall I taught a class called "Healthy Meals and Snacks You Can Make for $1.00 or less a serving. Many of the recipes came from the following website:
I will say that some of the recipes may not be as healthy as others. However, the nutrition information is provided with each recipe and estimated cost as well (per serving and full recipe cost). This site is really very good because of the ability to search for recipes based on a specific ingredient you want to use or a cost you'd like to stay within (and many other search options as well). I was a little frustrated when I found it quite by accident... for a multitude of reasons, I thought it should be more widely publicized - especially since my class members were adults with disabilities and (primarily) low income.
I also found some great ones through a blog called Cheap Healthy Good:
Many of these recipes are also excellent (it was actually my first resource for the class other than personal experience), but the search method is not quite as user friendly.
I hope that these sites are helpful to you!

DOREENK55 Posts: 60
10/29/11 7:28 P

Check out food Melissa d'Arabian does a show there called $10 dollar dinners. She feeds 4 people on $10.00 or less. Her recipes are healthy good food and most of them are pretty easy.

-POOKIE- Posts: 22,524
10/25/11 1:27 P

BUUKWORM14 SparkPoints: (78,756)
Fitness Minutes: (78,081)
Posts: 960
10/25/11 9:27 A

Dried beans are a wonder food. Beans and lentils go for about a dollar a pound and you can use them to add protein and fiber to anything. I throw them in stews to fill out limited meat or just eliminate the meat all together. Canned tuna, potatoes and frozen veggies are also great. If you can buy in bulk that helps, but be smart about it- don't buy things just because they seem cheap.

TRVLTA00 Posts: 1,012
10/25/11 5:42 A

Hi all! So I was having no problem eating healthy for a while. Then I needed a couple surgeries and now we're basically going broke from the hospital bills!! Now I'm struggling to find satisfying, healthy, yet CHEAP meals.

Any suggestions for some recipes/meals that are super budget friendly but still fun and yummy?!?! I only cook for my husband and myself, but big batch cooking is good too, because then I can freeze leftovers... so whatever you have is appreciated!!

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