Does anyone have any recipes that are healthy and also budget-friendly? Thanks!
Serena from Austin, TX
One of the cheapest things to do is to buy a whole chicken and bake it. I usually go to the bag-your-own-grocery store. Ours here is called Aldi. The chicken is 79 cents a pound! I thaw the chicken and take out the insides (this sounds gross but they are usually packaged nicely in paper so you just pull that out) and I through mine away, cuz I'm not that southern and don't like them, but if you are feeling brave you can cook these as well. With the chicken, lay it breast side up on a roasting pan and tie the legs together with string. Then liberally rub salt on the skin (do not take the skin off! It helps keep the chicken moist. If you don't want skin take it off after the chicken is cooked.) Then bake the chicken at 350 degrees for about an hour. Check with a poultry thermometer to be sure it is cooked all the way through. Then just carve it up.
My husband loves this so much that he usually eats the whole breast as soon as it comes out and all I have to work with is the dark meat.
With this I just pull it off the bone and use in a stew of rice, vegetables and sometimes beans. I don't even need to add chicken broth because the chicken cooking in the water will make broth. I always use vegetables that are in season so they are cheaper and better for the earth. Hope this helps.
You can also make refrigerator soup which is just a soup made of things that are leftovers from the previous nights. I like doing this at the end of the week. You can almost never go wrong with soup.
I make meat go further by adding lentils in stews and casseroles, and use other pulses to make some wonderful thick cheap soups.
In addition to the last posts suggestions, boil the bones of the chicken up for around an hour and you have a really good chicken stock for those soups.
Most vegetarian recipes are healthy and budget-friendly. Here are two links to get you started:
One of my favorites is: Slumgullion:
Brown 1# of ground beef, along with one onion, diced. Add one can tomatoes, chunked up pretty good, with seasoning to your familys' taste (I use 1 tsp. each, rosemary, oregano and marjoram). Let simmer while cooking elbow macaroni as per package directions. I usually use the amount I can hold in one hand for each person who will be eating. When macaroni is cooked drain it and add to the meat. Salt and/or pepper to taste. If it has time to set a little while before eating the flavor will be improved, but I usually can't hold my family off when they smell it!
This can also be extended, and made more healthy by shredding one large carrot and cooking in with the meat and onion.
Serve with a green salad, and you don't even need any bread.
This is very forgiving, I have made it with less meat and more macaroni and it is still good.
I have made this using just the mixed italian seasoning and it is good also.
I really like allrecipes.com finding recipes. Try making casseroles with half the meat that is called for. Also, try making more dishes with beans. Dried beans soaked overnight are really cheap, great protein, and if you find just one or two recipes your family likes, you have save a lot of money for the week.
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