I copied and pasted this thread from the main board. Posts that were just questions or comments I deleted. Recipes are copied to the appropriate category, as well. Watch for my notes in the thread.
Cheap Meals List
August 15 2006 at 4:34 PM BethannM (Login BethannM)
The kids and I brainstormed and have come up with a month's worth of main dishes and a few more than a week's breakfasts and lunches to rotate. These are based on things my kids like (for the most part). A couple are more costly than others, but all are very reasonable, and some are just dirt cheap. Here's what I've got. What cheap meals does your family like?
Spaghetti, garlic bread, salad
Meatloaf, baked potato, green beans
Beans, rice, and cheese
Grilled cheese and soup
hamburger bean soup
chicken and cheesy biscuit casserole
cream of broccoli soup
salad with grilled chicken
Ceasar Salad & cheesy garlic bread
roast chicken, mashed potatoes, gravy
chicken pot pie
roast with potatoes and carrots
beef stew (from leftover roast)
chicken and dumplings
Lunches to rotate
hamburger bun pizzas
Breakfasts to rotate
eggs and toast
Baked French toast
Snacks (all from scratch)
cookies of all varieties, esp Snickerdoodles, sugar cookies, and oatmeal cookies (cheap)
There are a few free hamburger- or chicken-helper meals on my shelf already too. When they're free with a coupon, I pick those up.
The Frugalista Files I have been really trying to utilize my odds and ends leftovers. August 15 2006, 8:57 PM
Tonight we had salmon. Tomorrow morning I am going to make an omlette with leftover salmon and some tomato that my neighbor gave us. Most nights I rarely have enough leftovers to really do anything with, except make one meal for one person. Sometimes I save up four dinners for a leftover night, but I like to use them while they are still fresh.
I had leftover taco meat a few days ago and put it on a baked potato with sour cream. That was yummy!
One thing to add to your list: cook a chicken (preferably one bought on sale for 59 cents a pound!) in the crock pot, debone and put bbq sauce on it. We LOVE that around here and I can usually get three meals out of it.
The Frugalista Files Cheap meal August 15 2006, 9:14 PM
Don't forget eggs as a cheap meal. Omlettes, scrambled, quiche, etc.
Moderators Quiche August 16 2006, 8:41 AM
Quiche is a great way to use up the leftovers too. You can even make a crustless quiche and that way it is healthier and has lots less calories and fat.
The Frugalista Files Here are mine August 16 2006, 8:47 AM
at least my breakfast and lunches. I really need to work on this as we still dont have a paycheck till Sept 8. Definatly a beans and rice kind of month. I need to get my dinners done.
french toast casserole
Cracker Barrel hash brown casserols
hot cereal - cream of wheat
biscuits and gravy
donuts / begneits
fingerfoods from sams
RR =: )
The Frugalista Files I just found a kids' granola bar recipe August 17 2006, 9:19 AM
I haven't tried it ~ just spotted it. It looks interesting:
Peanut Butter & Jelly Granola Bars
2 C uncooked oats
1/3 c peanut butter
1/2 C all-fruit jelly (or jam)
In medium bowl, mix all ingredients together thoroughly. Spread in a lightly greased 8" square pan. Bake @ 350* 20 - 25 min. Cool; cut in squares.
(If I made this I'd add protein powder or etc.)
The Frugalista Files easy recipe August 16 2006, 5:03 PM
you know the one... on the back of the box...
Mix bisquick, cheese and cooked sausage
add milk till it is mixed
roll into balls
pull out as needed and bake.
The Frugalista Files OK August 16 2006, 5:14 PM
We call them sausage balls and I dont cook the sausage before I put them together. I think that would be a great weekday breakfast. I could make them, freeze and nuke in the am!
The Frugalista Files We have done both August 16 2006, 5:26 PM
Frozen them cooked and frozen them raw. But I ALWAYS cook the sausage.
I prefer raw so we eat them in the winter or on weekends. Cooked gets eaten on the run.
Oh yeah, finger foods are all those nasty things in the case at sams that you should not eat
but do because you are in a hurry. Pizza rolls, chicken nuggets... still cheaper than eating out.
The Frugalista Files Possibly repeating things already mentioned August 18 2006, 2:50 AM
but cheapy meals (main meals) tend to involve leftovers, eggs (quiche goes so far with only a couple of eggs)or lentils/beans
For instance this week
Sunday we had traditional roast beef/veg (no yorkshire pud but it is a great "extender")
There was a tiny bit of beef and a few bits of cooked carrot and runner beans left over
so on Monday we had
Beef and vegetable pie using all the leftovers (beef cut up very small to spread it around!) - the only extras were an onion, a potato, some instant gravy and the pastry. Served with cabbage.
Having found an aubergine and a lot of tomatoes which needed using and had all the other ingredients anyway, I make a pan of ratatouille which we had with fried eggs and french bread (part bake ones that are quick in the oven)
Fish pie - made 2 so there is one in the freezer (fish bought on offer a few weeks ago)
Lentil lasagne - very cheap and a dishful will feed 6 easily ( 3 portions of it in freezer as there are 3 of us at the moment) I have never managed to make a smaller lasagne!
Back to the ratatouille, this time with bacon and new potatoes
The Coconut/rice recipe mentioned in Sandys thread is good with bits of ham or prawns added - with a salad it has main meal status
Cornish pasties - similar to Mondays pie but individual portions and traditional shape
Toad in the hole
Fish cakes (with potato)- canned tuna is good for these
Spanish omelette - serve with salad and crusty bread
Meat and potato pie - (my version of traditional Lancashire dish)
Make in deep dish for preference. Pre boil lots of potatoes and cook a very small amount of mince (hamburger) with onion.
Mix the whole lot together with as good a gravy as you can manage at the time and season well. NO HERBS but plenty of pepper. Top with pastry brushed with beaten egg. Serve with a veg - carrots or cabbage go well.
This is a winter dish - nobody can move far afterwards!
Soup of any variety - homemade. For a main meal add a sandwich or similar
If I have leftover chili or similar it gets turned in to enchiladas with a few extra bits and pieces (home made tortillas - Cheryl in Utahs recipe)
The Frugalista Files Any fish will do August 22 2006, 12:53 AM
I usually use coley with a few prawns thrown in because coley is very cheap and the dull colour doesn't show up in a fish pie.
My favourite is to mix white fish with a little(a third of the amount?) smoked cod or haddock - then a few prawns mmaybe.
I make it like this
Make about half a pint to a pint (depending on size of pie)of white sauce. If I have cream or creme fraiche I will add a dollop.Add plenty of parsley or herb of choice/salt/pepper.
Pour over fish in oven proof dish and mix so integrated.
Cover with enough mashed potato to cover, then top with grated cheese or leave plain. Cook in oven or whizz under grill to brown if everything is still hot from preparation.
You can also heat in microwave then brown under the grill
The Frugalista Files I wish this list could be archived - maybe pinned is a better word August 21 2006, 10:05 AM
Super cheap meal - potato soup & biscuits, really almost any vegetable soup is going to be cheap.
Frittatas - we like Mexican
Pasta & rice dishes without meat. We like Rice e Fagiola & can make it with pasta instead of rice.