What Are The Cheapest Meals To Make?

Even though things are currently good, there were numerous occasions when my family required extremely inexpensive dinner ideas.

We have experienced four employment losses, including two in which my husband, John, was the sole source of income. And with a small daughter, this can be challenging!

Each time, however, we’ve made it through. I had to be highly inventive with food to maintain a $30/week grocery budget for a family of three, but we survived and ate well. You can find all of our recipes in my e-book, Emergency Meals.

The following 15 dishes are inexpensive family meals. Those “Oh, crap, I don’t have much money next week” meals. They are not elegant, but they are functional. And when you’re on an extremely tight budget, you’re only interested in the cheapest meal options!

Whether searching for the cheapest meal or what to make with no money, these meals should inspire what to serve your family.

Are these meals healthy?

Some of the cheapest dishes listed below may need to be balanced nutritionally. In other words, they contain minimal ingredients and may not have any fruits or vegetables.

When you have no extra money, you make do with what you have, and if you can add more vegetables to your meal, you should so that you can get more nutrition. However, serving these simple recipes to your family is acceptable regardless of your financial situation.

The Cheapest Meals To Make

Here are many options of cheapest meals to make:

1.) Peanut butter and strawberry jam sandwiches

It is somewhat apparent, but PB&J is a classic staple and an EXTREMELY straightforward meal. It is kid-friendly, requires inexpensive ingredients, and is simply delicious. I like to consume mine with string cheese or yogurt and a banana.

Whole wheat bread pairs well with this dish due to its excellent protein and fiber, keeping you fuller for longer.

Someone once told me that peanut butter and jelly is not a legitimate meal, but it’s in my stomach, so it must be!

2.) Pasta and jarred sauce

These are items I recommend always keeping in your larder. You never know when you might need a quick meal, but pasta and sauce is as simple as it gets. Consider purchasing one of each item the next time you visit the grocery store.

If you have shredded mozzarella, you can make a simple pasta bake by combining prepared pasta and sauce in a casserole dish, topping it with cheese, and baking it at 375 degrees for 20 minutes.

3.) Bean and cheese burritos

Here is my preferred formula. A simple burrito is comprised of homemade refried beans and shredded queso. These also preserve well!

If you don’t like baked beans, black beans or legumes work well too. Additionally, you may add sour cream or salsa.

4.) Pancakes and waffles

Even without pancake/waffle mix, you can create pancakes/waffles. A simple batch costs pennies to prepare and is a very inexpensive alternative to dinner.

I enjoy this recipe for oatmeal pancakes and Whole Wheat Freezer Waffles. It is a dish my entire family enjoys!

5.) Grilled cheese sandwiches

Classic toasted cheese sandwich. It can be used for virtually anything, but my favorite application is sliced cheddar on freshly baked bread. I could consume approximately 5 in one setting.

Purchase a can of tomato soup to complement this basic yet delicious meal.

6.) Chili cheese dogs

Simple and satisfying dinner. Canned chili is the most convenient option, but if you made chili earlier in the week, you can save money by reusing the remnants!

7.) Sloppy Joes

You have a straightforward dinner with a few condiments and ground beef/turkey! Here is my beloved Sloppy Joe recipe, and if you’re vegetarian, here’s a Lentil Sloppy Joe slow cooker recipe. This one is a moneymaker!

8.) Goulash

Who knew something so essential could be so satisfying? Macaroni, ground sirloin, and tomatoes, cooked! Here is the recipe for a meal that is inexpensive.

9.) Baked potato

I adore preparing dinner with baked potatoes. Add broccoli, cheese, bacon, taco garnishes, and baked beans. This last one is entirely new to me, but it sounds intriguing!

10.) Quesadillas

It is one of my favorite meals due to its adaptability. You may add rice, black beans, shredded chicken breasts, minced beef, or plain cheese.

11.) Biscuits

Biscuits are an excellent breakfast food. Create an egg sandwich, top it with a simple gravy, or consume it with butter and honey. It is my preferred biscuit recipe.

12.) Tuna melts

Tuna, mayonnaise, and cheese comprise the most straightforward recipe, but you can add hard-boiled eggs, relish, or other essential components to make it more substantial.

13.) Egg and cheese burritos

Breakfast burritos are delicious in the morning and can even be frozen. Add ground sausage to make it extend further.

14.) Bowl of rice and beans burrito

Perhaps I’m odd, but I don’t mind consuming only rice and black beans. It’s one of those simple weeknight preparations that utilizes pantry staples.

For me, the finest combination is roasted sweet potatoes, salsa, and shredded cheese.

15.) Oat bars

Any type of baked porridge is inexpensive and delicious for breakfast. You may incorporate bananas, chocolate morsels, blueberries, etc. There are infinite possibilities, and they are all delectable.

When our food budget was tight, I would use Swagbucks to earn gift certificates for stores like Sam’s Club to stock up on necessities like toilet paper. It can become costly, mainly if your grocery budget incorporates household items!

Thank you for reading…..

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