Monday, February 28, 2011

My 3 favorite meals under 75 cents each

At different times in the last few years I have had to regulate my eating habits to fit my budget, and sadly, put "healthy" on the back burner, and adjust my focus to simply eating, anything, even if it is not a balanced diet.

During these times I rely on a few meals that are first, cheap, second, palatable, and third, not a total lack of nutrition. It is for that reason, you will not see ramen on my list.

When I say "not a total lack of nutrition", you also must understand my priorities in nutrition. First comes protein, I am young, and small enough to justify the thought that someday I will grow another few inches, and I work out quite a bit.

And for nutrition, that sums it up.

Back in the day I called these meals the < $0.65 meals. Leave it to inflation to bump it up to 75 cents.... First: French Toast.
6 pieces of bread- This is 1/4 of the whole loaf I get from Wal Mart for $1.18, so, $0.30
3 eggs- I get eggs for $0.13 each. $0.39
Powdered sugar. Depends on the amount, usually < $0.05

Total Cost: $0.74
Total protein by the way, 23 grams
Total Calories, 530 plus the powder sugar

Second: Breakfast Burrito, Kind of....
Homemade Tortilla- 4 cups flour = 1.1 Lbs, so when I buy 25 Lbs of wheat for $6.35, this 1.1 Lbs, costs $0.26. A quarter cup of shortening in almost negligible, ringing in at <$0.10. Salt and baking soda ring up another <$0.10, putting this recipe at a total cost of $0.46, divided by 4, since it makes 8 and I only eat 2. Total for 1 meal- $0.12
3 Eggs @ $0.13 each is $0.39
Cheese- I don't know current prices of cheese, nor do I know how much you like, but with the rest of the recipe costing $0.51, you have $0.24 to play with.

Additional things to add- Taco sauce of course, homegrown onion or bell pepper, etc.

Total cost: $0.75

Third: Beans and corn
I love beans and corn together.

4 Ounces/half cup dried beans. You must cook these, but the cost is $13.20 per 25 Lbs (50 cups). So to use half a cup, you are using about 1/100th of the total. Cost per meal for the beans is $0.13.

Can of corn on sale- $0.25 on a great sale, $0.33 on a decent sale.

Total cost: $0.38 or $0.46
Note: Often I will double this just because 1 is not enough. When I buy my cans of corn on a great sale, this still comes up to $0.76. I chalk the extra 1 penny up to the convenience of getting ready to eat canned corn that I don't have to cook.

So there you have my top 3 meals for less than $0.75 a piece. I eat a lot if you couldn't tell by my serving size of french toast being 6 pieces, so if you are dainty, or not one to eat a lot, you can reduce this cost even more. Happy eating!

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