We here at Cash Central hope everyone stays healthy and safe while riding out these trying times. How long things will remain off kilter is anyone’s guess, but we must stay vigilant and keep soldiering on in the meantime. That being said, it’s hard to keep soldiering on with an empty stomach, now isn’t it? More to the point, balancing the yummy with the affordable can be challenging even when you’re not in a time of crisis. Here are a few recipes to help you stretch your dollars while feeding you and yours.
Black Beans and Rice
1 teaspoon olive oil, 1 chopped onion, 2 minced garlic cloves, ¾ cup uncooked white rice, 1-1/2 cups low fat/sodium vegetable broth, 1 teaspoon ground cumin, 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, 3-1/2 cups drained canned black beans
Heat the olive oil in a stockpot over medium-high heat. Toss in the onion and garlic, then saute for about 4 minutes. Next throw in the rice and saute everything for a couple of minutes more. Now pour in the vegetable broth and bring it all to a boil, then cover it and lower the heat. Cook for roughly 20 minutes, then add the black beans and spices and serve. Takes about 5 minutes to prepare and another 25 minutes to cook. Total cost is about $5.00, makes 6 servings, which is about $0.80 per serving.
Homemade Stovetop Mac n’ Cheese
One 16 oz. box of pasta elbows, shells or other variety, 4 cups milk, 4 tablespoons flour, 2 tablespoons sugar, 1 teaspoon of salt and a dash of pepper, 4 cups shredded Monterrey Jack cheese
Boil the entire box of pasta in a pot, and while that’s happening mix the milk and flour together in a separate pot, adding the sugar, salt and even a dash of pepper to taste. Keep stirring the mixture until it boils, then add the shredded cheese. Simmer until it thickens and then pour your cheesy mix all over the pasta.
It’s ready to serve at this point, unless you feel like adding extras to bring more flavors into the mix like bacon crumbles, ham, peas, tomatoes, tuna or scallions. If time is not an issue you can go all out and dump everything into a casserole dish, top with breadcrumbs and bake it in the oven for 20-25 minutes. Total cost is about $5.00, makes 6 servings; which is about $0.80 per serving.
Slow Cooker Shredded Beef BBQ Sandwiches
One 3-pound boneless chuck roast, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, 1 teaspoon onion powder, 1 teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon pepper, 1-1/2 cups barbecue sauce, whole wheat buns for serving
Mix the garlic and onion powder, salt and pepper together in a small bowl. Rub the roast all over with this seasoning and put it in the slow cooker. Next pour the barbecue sauce over the meat, then cook on low for 8-10 hours or until you can easily shred the beef. Now shred the beef using two forks, remove the excess liquid and serve on whole wheat buns. Total cost is about $15.00, makes 8 servings; which is about $1.90 per serving.
We hope you enjoy these easy meal ideas. Bon appetit!
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1Mintz, Eileen. (2022, Sept 22). Retrieved from: https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/15559/black-beans-and-rice/?utm_source=whisk&utm_medium=webapp&utm_campaign=black_beans_and_rice
2Gorey, Jon. (2019, Sept 27). Retrieved from: https://www.thesimpledollar.com/save-money/dinner-ideas-easy-recipes-for-back-to-back-nights/?preview_id=47404
3Conner, Polly. (2022, Jun 1). Retrieved from: https://thrivinghomeblog.com/slow-cooker-shredded-bbq-beef-sandwiches-freezer-meal/