Every family needs at least one meal that they can eat for pennies.
Whether they want to stay on a frugal budget, or do a No Spend Month, or make more money available for expensive foods like organic vegetables and grass-fed beef, it helps to have one good meal that everyone likes and doesn’t cost much.
So, beans and rice, check.
What do you eat when you’re trying to keep your budget low and you get tired of beans and rice?
Eggs cost twenty cents each. (I’m using prices from Whole Foods in Dallas, TX, since I know food costs vary by region.) You can make scrambled eggs with homemade biscuits, and feed a family of four for less than three dollars.
Chicken stock is made from what would have been thrown away. When we have roast chicken, we eat all of the meat, and then I use the leftover carcass to make stock. I prepare this almost every week at our house, and then I add rice to make soup.
More ideas: baked potatoes, pasta, stir fry, hummus
What are your favorite cheap meal ideas to save money?
I wanted to mention some people who are doing their own No Spend Month challenge this month so you can cheer for them. (If I missed yours or if you’re not blogging about it, share it with us in the comments.)
Kait from Your Morning Cup is trying to go for the month of July spending $150 or so on food and not buying any superfluous items. She says, “Last year when we did this we were able to save enough to make our $1,000 emergency fund. That sure came in handy when last winter we spent $800 on tires for my car! We were lucky to not have to go into debt then, and quickly built the savings back up. This year the goal is to kick most of the rest of our credit card debt.”
Jamie from SteadyMom has set a limit of $350 to spend on her family of five for the month and she’s thinking of ways to have fun with her kids for free.
Sharon from Musings of a Midlife Mom is doing her No Spend Month with a husband and 4 teenagers. If she can stick with her plan, she’ll save $900! She says, “My ultimate goal (besides saving some money) is to become more conscious of my spending. This challenge will force me to make every dollar count.”
Preeti from Heart and Mind has a $300 budget for a family of 4 for the month. She only spent $33 last week!
You can do it!