What is the cheapest meal you make on a regular basis? - Page 2 - VeggieBoards
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#31 Old 01-13-2016, 03:52 PM
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Lentil kofta! I make a pot at the beginning of every week--

gently simmer -
1 cup red lentils (split lentils are best for a pate') in-
2 cups water
for between 10 and 15 minutes, till very soft.
Turn off heat and stir in -
1/2 cup bulgar wheat (cracked wheat) and cover. Let sit

I also add about a teaspoon of cumin, tumeric, and garlic powder, but you can season how you like.
I shape into patties for sandwiches with pickles, onions, lettuce, and either v mayo, mustard, ketchup- I usually have this cold
You can add to veggie broth for a substantial quick soup
Make balls and dredge in bread crumbs and sautee or bake
Great for romaine lettuce wraps

I just learned that red lentils can be bought either split, or "football" which are the whole lentil.I used to buy them in bulk and think they were split, but never knew a difference until I bought at an Indian grocery. The whole (football) keep their shape.

Red lentils I get for $1.75 a lb.
Cracked wheat $1.50 a lb
One pound is about 3.5 cups so about .75 cents a pot. Makes a lot!
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#32 Old 01-14-2016, 05:44 AM
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A bowl of white rice with some sprinkles of spice, and onion. Cheap. Oatmeal. Crock pot beans. All cheap. Like 1.50 for 4-7 meals or so. A microwaved potato sandwich.

Last edited by Gita; 01-14-2016 at 05:47 AM.
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#33 Old 01-14-2016, 10:57 PM
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I've been trying to decrease my spending lately so I've had some days where I just try to use what's in the cupboard. I know olive oil isn't the cheapest but all you have to do it combine it with lemon juice and it makes a great easy sauce for a mix of veggies, or as I like it, on black eyed peas. Cook lentil with a bay leaf and then serve it with a tiny bit of balsamic vinegar and black pepper and it's also a cheap meal. Any kind of cake can also be made pretty cheaply, not that it's the healthiest. Oh and chili. Throw beans, veggies, tomato paste/diced tomatos in with some chili powder and a bit of cumin. Easy and yummy. Tofu scramble's also pretty reasonable depending on veggies use. Just curry powder, tofu, tomatos and green/red pepper with a bit of onion/onion powder. I've also been eating more oat meal recently. I've found the key to liking it is sugar and peach juice haha. The cheap peach-apple blend they sell at walmart plus some soy milk and cinnamon. Then there's of course pasta and rice. I like my pasta with a bit of dry basil cooked with it and then you can add a cheap can of tomato sauce or just a little olive oil and salt. The more expensive option would be to add fresh basil, onion, garlic, tomatoes and oil and make your own tomato sauce. Plain basmatti rice with a bit of canola oil is nice. I also make really good rice with 1 cup rice, 2 cups water, 2 cups frozen peas and 2 carrots chopped small, 1 bunch green onion and 8 tsp soy sauce.
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#34 Old 01-15-2016, 03:17 AM
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two slices of homemade whole wheat bread with kidney beans and salsa on top, or with fat free refried pinto beans on top

oatmeal with frozen berries or a fresh banana mixed in and some cinnamon

any kind of bean and vegetable soup combination, cooked in water (some cheaper vegetables are celery, carrots, most leafy greens, green bell peppers, zucchini, fresh green beans, onions, mushrooms)

spaghetti topped with a mix of canned tomato sauce and cooked veggies such as zucchini, tomato, green bell pepper, mushroms, and red lentils or black beans

Canned pumpkin, banana, peanut butter mixture

marinaded and grilled or sauteed portobello mushroom strips, green pepper, onion over brown rice or couscous
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#35 Old 01-15-2016, 06:31 AM
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Split pea soup is probably one of the very cheapest things I make. Split peas are ridiculously cheap here in the UK.
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#36 Old 01-17-2016, 10:24 AM
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Are you able to grow your own vegetables? We don't have a garden but we have an allotment and we base our meals on what we grow. This week for example, we had pumpkin soup, spinach tian, potato salad, green salad and apple and mincemeat jalousie.
The pumpkin, spinach, potatoes, lettuce and apples are all our own.
Also Indian food is generally very cheap to prepare - vegetable curry, lentil dhal and rice or homemade chapati make for a substantial and nourishing meal and very cheap to prepare. Buying the lentils and rice from an Asian shop will always be cheaper than buying them from a supermarket, and if you've got the money, buying the larger quantity bags/sacks make it cheaper still.
Hope this helps?
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#37 Old 01-17-2016, 11:26 AM
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I'm a college student so everything I make is cheap. Meals I make regularly are probably potato curry, stir fry, chickpea salad, pasta with tomato sauce, soup, chili, and rice with vegetables.
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Last edited by Lil' Tofu; 01-17-2016 at 11:28 AM.
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#38 Old 01-17-2016, 02:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Naturebound View Post
Canned pumpkin, banana, peanut butter mixture
That would make an interesting and quick sauce for noodles
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#39 Old 01-18-2016, 01:51 PM
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Rice and beans ftw
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#40 Old 01-18-2016, 02:53 PM
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I really don't care for the rice and beans combo. Well I do them with fat free refried and the can of chilis and chopped tomatoes. Thats a quick, easy, cheap dish
I love rice and lentils-mujadara
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#41 Old 01-30-2016, 07:31 PM
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I agree with this, you can't really go wrong with any of this!
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#42 Old 12-04-2017, 12:59 PM
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The cheapest meal that I eat is buttered noodles. My friend's mom taught me how to make it because we all were poor growing up. You take a 1LB box of noodles and you cook them until they are fully cooked. And then you put butter and salt on them and there is your super cheap meal. I like to use a quarter stick of butter. And then you freeze the rest of the noodles for 3+ other meals. And when you reheat them to let them dethaw out in the fridge and put the butter on top when you cook them in the microwave to reheat them.

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#43 Old 04-11-2018, 04:22 AM
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I live very frugally so even though I absolutely love good food I do many things to keep the cost down:

Keep a stock of pasta, rice and noodles.

Have a store cupboard full of herbs and spices

If making a sauce make a load and separate into portions for freezer

Keep anything at all left over. Always serves another purpose - add to it to make another meal, add it to soup etc.

Never put the oven on for one thing
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#44 Old 04-11-2018, 05:15 PM
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A can of black beans and a can of corn dumped together and sprinkled with salt, pepper and cumin.

A while back I went from vegan to low fat vegan to lose weight. No added oils and nothing with oil, no soy, avocado, nuts or seeds (except on my day off!). I am eating heaps of delicious food and saving a fortune by not buying processed food!
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#45 Old 04-11-2018, 06:52 PM
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Split pea soup: costs about $1.75 for the whole recipe, and is delicious and filling. It calls for vegetable broth but I just use water.

Taste of Home Veg*n Split Pea Soup
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#46 Old 04-13-2018, 01:37 AM
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This is my cheap eating blog. Rarely updated, but I do regularly eat the food I post - so no 'experiments' and they should work. Many of them are done in bulk, so they can be fridged for later in the week, or frozen for later in the month. I'm a fan of saving time too.

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Last edited by Spudulika; 04-13-2018 at 01:39 AM.
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#47 Old 10-08-2018, 03:11 AM
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oatmeal, I try to eat it every morning
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#48 Old 12-08-2018, 12:32 PM
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Originally Posted by joombo View Post
oatmeal, I try to eat it every morning
Same! Or rice and beans.
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#49 Old 01-25-2019, 11:33 AM
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I'm not sure how much one of my most common meals costs because I'm not sure how much it weighs! The quick-cooking rolled oats I use are about $1.50 per pound... that would be about $3 per kilogram, but I don't know what the current exchange rate is for other currencies.

For breakfast, I have a big bowl of oats... but uncooked. I usually moisten it with water (unless I have some sort of nondairy milk on hand), and have 1 or 2 pieces of fruit with it: apple, pear, peach, plum, banana, a cup of grapes- maybe even an orange or tangerine, which sounds kind of unconventional, but orange juice is a common drink, so why not? Sometimes I put the fruit in the oats, but often I eat it on the side.

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#50 Old 01-25-2019, 01:01 PM
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Dry split green peas are the cheapest of all bagged legumes, and they have as much protein as lentils or beans. In the U.S., probably the only cheaper legume is bulk-supplied pinto beans.


Specific recommendations for a healthy diet include: eating more fruit, vegetables, legumes, nuts and grains; cutting down on salt, sugar and fats. It is also advisable to choose unsaturated fats, instead of saturated fats and towards the elimination of trans-fatty acids."
- United Nations' World Health Organization

Last edited by David3; 01-25-2019 at 01:03 PM.
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