Whoever coined the phrase “rain, rain go away” has obviously never been in the midst of a drought before. For the past few weeks, a large portion of the country has been suffering from a severe lack of rain. This is bad news for farmers, whose crops can’t grow without water, and it’s pretty alarming news for us consumers too because we rely on those farm foods to feed our families every day. Officials are now predicting that we may all see an increase in the prices at our local grocery stores because of this super drought. The cost for everything from corn to beef to milk and eggs could skyrocket as soon as this fall. It’s enough to make me want to go out and do a rain dance.
What are we supposed to do? Purse strings are already tight because of the economy and it’s tough enough to get dinner on the table as it is.
Don’t worry. It’s not all doom and gloom. We here at RecipeLion understand the importance of cheap meals and inexpensive recipes. That’s why we have an entire section of our website dedicated to budget-friendly dishes.
I’ve cooked a bunch of these recipes for my family and they always love them. You’d never be able to guess that they’re made from super cheap ingredients. Since there are so many great cheap meals on the site, I decided to go through them all and pick out a few of my family’s favorites. These budget-conscious dishes are great for weeknight dinners and even larger family get-togethers. So go ahead and try a few of these recipes out this summer and see which ones your family likes best!
Family Favorite Cheap Meals:
Au Gratin Potatoes and Ham – This is a creamy and hearty dish that will leave everyone at the table satisfied. Serve it as a side or eat it for the main course; it’s delicious either way!
Dollar Store Ranch Chicken Casserole – Many of the ingredients needed for this tasty casserole dish can be found at your local dollar discount store. While this recipe is short on cost, it’s definitely full of flavor!
Bourbon Chicken Over Rice (via Double the Deliciousness) – This chicken dish packs in the taste and will leave you wanting seconds, it’s that good! This is a great meal to make for a larger group since it feeds six (at just $1.40 per person, no less!).
Wacky Mac Pasta Salad (via Living Rich With Coupons) – With just five ingredients (all super cheap), this yummy pasta salad recipe is a definite winner when it comes to cheap meals. Try it tonight and you’ll see why!
Hash Brown Potato Casserole – Made with a can of cream of mushroom soup plus some tasty potato nuggets, you know this casserole dish is going to be cheap to prepare but you don’t know how delicious it is until you take your first bite. But you can trust me when I say this is one of my all-time favorite casserole dishes… and that’s saying something!
You can never have enough cheap eats, so here are a few more recipe collections that are easy on the wallet:
- 16 Excellent Cheap Casserole Recipes
- 14 Delicious Budget Pork Chop Recipes
- 16 Hobo Recipes: Meals for Cheap
Finally I thought I’d share some tips on saving money on food, which I found over at Homefront United:
5 Creative Ways to Save Money on Food:
- Make some of your meals meatless. Meat costs more than veggies, and vegetarian meals are just as good — if not better tasting — than meat-packed dishes.
- Know which foods are the cheapest. Great inexpensive staples are things like potatoes, beans and pasta which never go out of style.
- Make use of the grocery store salad bar. For several kinds of ingredients, you can get just the amount you need instead of paying a ton for a large package and having too much.
- Raid your pantry. Make one night’s dinner each week using only the things you already have in your kitchen.
- Host meals for your friends… and then have them host you! By rotating the dinner schedule, you can save money on your overall meal costs. Plus it’s fun to eat with friends!
What’s YOUR family’s favorite cheap meal?