We are just about tired of the same o same o around here – so I thought I’d take the advice from Tricia at Hodgepodge Mom and REALLY check out $5 Dinners. Not say – “Wow, that’s great food you’re cookin there.” but really put it to the test.
Today I went through their recipe index and picked out 5 meals – Turkey Balls, Taco Soup, Beef Stroganoff, Santa Fe Chicken and Grilled Chicken Fajita Pasta. I wrote down what I would need from the ingredients then went to the store. In theory, I shouldn’t have spent more than $25.00 – the problem is, they count for the ounces, half pounds, 3 carrots, 1/2 cup of rice as part of the smaller price.
One of the things that spurred this on today – is having all of the members of the family peer into an empty pantry, taking dibs on who was going to eat the sugar free apple sauce or red beans for breakfast. I needed encouragement to create a shopping list to fill the pantry – So here goes.
I’ll start with the Taco Soup – which is what we just enjoyed this evening. WHOA! What did I say? I did the grocery shopping this afternoon AND I cooked a great meal? Ya, I don’t know about your house – but 9 times out of ten on our bi-monthly shopping trip it’s take out pizza on the way home.
So – the Taco Soup & Sweet Watermelon recipe is here: http://www.5dollardinners.com/2008/08/taco-soup-and-sweet-watermelon.html
I had to purchase: (For the sake of it being summer, and this not being a real test, I’m not really going to round out the monies . . . so $7.34 for two servings of hamburger can be 3.65 ok?)
|1/2 Lb Ground Beef (.90)||Lean Ground Beef 2.88/lb for 7.34, I split the package into two servings, putting half of it back in the freezer.|
|2 Cans Whole Tomatoes (.59)||2 Cans Stewed Tomatoes .47 each|
|1 Can Rotel Tomatoes with Green Chilies (.65)||1 Can of Rotel was 1.85 so I got the Western Family Fiesta Tomatoes with Chilis for $1.19|
|1/2 cup rice uncooked (.10)||1 cup (she said it would help stretch the recipe) In Cupboard|
|1 Taco Seasoning Packet (.33)||1 Taco Pkt from cupboard. Seems like these are at least a dollar.|
|1/2 cup red and black beans uncooked (.30)||1 Can Black Beans .65 and 1 can Chili Beans .65|
|1-2 corn on the cob (.50)||1 Corn in Husk .34|
|Water||Hmmm it’s about 50 bucks a month, not sure what 4 cups is worth.|
|Watermelon.35||Watermelon was 4.85, so we went with Icee Pop|
So my cost of what I purchased today – was $7.44. I made an oven corn bread, I have all the ingredients for it – the most would be the 2 small eggs and 1 cup of milk to purchase, and we grated a small amount of cheese on top. So I’d say – with the .99 cent pack of taco seasoning, the rice and water – Oh and I chopped up a sad half of an onion that was in the fridge while browning the meat. Let’s not even count that. . . but it is tasty. so – I’d call it a $10.00 meal – except I think this pot is going to last a couple of days around here! The black Dutch oven is full to capacity. Oh – I added a tablespoon of Knorr Tomato Base and Knorr beef broth to the 4 cups of water that I put the rice in . . .instead of the suggested “another can of tomatoes”.
Did ya get that? It is probably a $5.00 meal, since it will definitely feed us twice.
wait…. the watermelon is dessert, right? not IN the soup??
I always think o trying those recipes, but
[A]- mashed together food always looks icky to me (even if it tastes yummy)
[B] my youngest is so picky, he’d not eat it- but he always makes his own food anymore
which are just EXCUSES. I should just try it anyway. no corn in our taco-soup, though…
I cut the corn off the cob and put it in a bowl on the side. Youngest son says – No Corn in anything. Crazy Kid.
Hey – how did I miss that recipe??? Taco soup and watermelon? Sounds like something different. Though, this time around we are doing a pantry/freezer challenge again… but I may be able to do a variation with beans! I could eat my weight in watermelon and may have actually done that today! Love your breakdown on prices – even the cost of water!! You are a real $5 Dinner Gal 🙂
Mmm, sounds like a great recipe. We make a taco soup also. Our’s has meat, a variety of beans, corn, taco seasoning, sour cream, and sprinkled with cheese when in our bowl served with corn chips. I’ll have to try it with the tomatoes and rice.
I’m glad I stopped by today to learn about the cheap meals, thanks.
Was it good?
I have found that the recipes do not cost $5 a meal…I would say that they are about $7-10 a meal, but that they are less expensive than your average meal. We like your Ruth Ann’s Cornbread with Taco-Chili topping and it is pretty frugal, too. : )