When I moved out on my own, I could not cook. Well, I could not cook most things. I remember one night trying to make dinner and getting so confused I called a friend's parent and had her walk me through how to cook whatever I was cooking though I do not remember what it was. I have gotten much better now and also have bought a crockpot which helps a lot. I have learned to watch sales and stockpile but it is just a fact of life that certain types foods will be cheaper than other types. For example ground beef is cheaper than steak but I can get a good deal on both. Since I am trying to say money on food I am going to start pricing out some of my favorite frugal recipes and posting it. Today's is crockpot chili.
ground beef or turkey-$1.99/lb using one pound
can of black beans .69/can
can of kidney beans .69/can
taco or chili powder depending on the size it would be at max .79/each
tomato soup .69/can use two
Brown the meat, then throw everything in the crockpot and leave on low for 8 hours.
You now have about 4-6 servings of chili for $5.54, about one dollar a serving. If you can afford or want to, you can add cheese and/or sour cream once it is in bowls. Adding that might increase the cost to $1.50 per serving.
Now I hate eating the same thing day after day so I understand if you are sitting there going but I am not eating 4 meals of chili in a row. I would not do it either. What I do is put half in the freezer for a later date and eat one bowl of chili and then the next meal we cut up a potato, fry it in vegetable oil and pour the chili over it and make chili fries. I may spend a little more on the vegetable oil and the potato but not much (maybe another .50) and it makes me willing to eat the leftovers.
Some people may say that these are not health meal because there are no fruits or vegetables in them. You could add in some frozen corn to the chili or stewed tomatoes but I found I did not like it that way. Some people might add some vegetables on the side but for me, I am ok with an occasional cheap meal that does not have everything in it. We can't always be good.
Anyone else who has a great frugal meal, let me know in the comments.