Enjoying a home cooked meal with the whole family is one of life’s most treasured opportunities. Of course, keeping the meal within the budget makes that meal taste even better! The following are delicious, cheap family meals that everyone is sure to love.
Cheap Family Meals: Egg & Black Bean Burritos
Breakfast for dinner anyone? This nutritious, quick, and protein-packed dish is perfect for any meal – breakfast, lunch or dinner. Plus, it’s a great alternative when you need a delicious meal on-the-go.
Directions: Begin by heating a can of black beans over low heat on the stovetop. Scramble a dozen eggs and heat tortillas on the griddle or in the microwave (about 30 seconds). Once the eggs are scrambled and the beans warm, assemble the burritos. Add cheese, tomatoes, onions, or other toppings. Depending on what extra toppings you add, these come out to less than $1 a burrito. Wrap extra burritos in parchment paper and freeze up to 1 month. To reheat, wrap frozen burrito in a wet paper towel, microwave for 1 minute.
Cheap Family Meals: Spicy Bean Chili
This is really one of the most classic cheap family meals. You really can’t go wrong with this hearty favorite. Serve with cornbread or chips and of course, a little sprinkle of cheddar cheese on top.
Directions: Begin by browning one pound of ground beef in a skillet. Once brown, transfer to a large pot. Add in a can of diced tomatoes, one chopped onion, three chopped celery stalks, one chopped bell pepper, and one minced garlic clove. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add a package of chili seasoning with 1/2 cup of water and bring to a boil. Add two cans of black beans or kidney beans and simmer 1 hour. Serve alone or over rice or pasta. A serving of this delicious dish is under $2. To make an even cheaper version, skip the meat completely and make it vegetarian by adding an extra can of beans and some frozen corn.
Cheap Family Meals: Pot Roast and Vegetables
Known for being popular on mostly winter menus, this meal is perfect any time of the year when you’re craving good ol’ meat and potatoes.
Directions: Begin by placing a small rump roast in a crock pot and covering it with water. Cook on high for three hours then add root vegetables – everything from peeled and chopped carrots and parsnips to Brussel sprouts and turnips. Chop up golden or purple potatoes plus salt and pepper to taste, and cook an additional three hours. Each serving rounds up to $1.50.
Cheap Family Meals: Ratatouille
Not to be confused with the popular Disney flick, this classic meal is especially good when the fresh vegetables come from your very own garden or the local farmer’s market.
Directions: The easiest way to make this dish is to cut vegetables (onions, eggplant, zucchini, carrots, spinach, tomatoes) and stir-fry in olive oil. Careful – the trick with this recipe is to add the veggies starting with the ones that need the most time to cook. Then add basil and oregano, turn down the heat, cover, and let simmer for 40 minutes. This healthy vegetarian meal is delightful with rice or crusty French bread. Each serving is approximately $1.80.
Cheap Family Meals: Sausage, Peppers and Onions
This is a great pasta option when plain spaghetti just won’t do.
Directions: Begin by slicing up sweet Italian sausage. You can also use chicken or turkey sausage if you prefer. Throw in a skillet with sliced sweet onion, colorful peppers (red, green, yellow and orange), and two cloves of garlic. Sauté in a generous amount of olive oil adding salt and pepper to taste. Serve over cooked pasta. The cost of this dish is $1.60 per person.