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"It Costs About $8 And It Feeds Four": People Are Sharing The Inexpensive (Yet Delicious) Meals They Make For Their Families

"It feeds four adults for roughly $5 and takes about five minutes to make."

At this point, we all know that groceries have gotten wildly expensive over the years. And, I don't know about you, but it's been really tough for me to stick to my food budget. So, recently, I decided to ask the BuzzFeed community to share the inexpensive meals they've been making that their families love. Here are some of the budget-friendly dishes they shared:

1. Vegetarian Stew

a bowl of sweet potato vegetarian stew

2. One Chicken, Four Meals

"When the kids were little and I was on a minuscule budget, I would buy whole roasting chickens on super sale, a bag of pinto beans, some burrito wrappers, and whatever veggies were fresh and marked down. 

Day one: roasted chicken and veggies. Then, make stock. 

Day two: leftover meat, the pinto beans cooked in the stock, some veggies, and seasonings for burritos. 

Day three (and sometimes four): dump everything leftover into soup! I could get four dinners for four people for about $12. Just change around the seasonings so it's not too repetitive."


3. Ham and Bean Soup

a bowl of ham and bean soup with a toasted slice of bread

4. "Fancy" Grilled Cheese

"Fancy grilled cheese. Typical sandwich, but with tomato sauce and pickles slathered on the bread. Yes, I know it sounds gross, but the flavors will marry in your mouth, and it’s become a staple in my house — even my very picky five-year-old daughter loves it!"

—Megan, Utah

5. Beef Stroganoff

a plate of beef stroganoff topped with sour cream

6. "Close Enough" Fried Rice

"I like to call it 'close enough fried rice': brown rice cooked with a bouillon cube in the water, a can of mixed vegetables, and water chestnuts that have been drained, rinsed, and air fried to add some crispiness. 

When the rice is done, add the veggies, soy sauce, hot sauce, and everything bagel seasoning. Lasts all week and freezes for leftovers. If I’m feeling healthy, I substitute half the rice for cauliflower that I buy frozen."


7. Lemony Spaghetti

a plate of lemon spaghetti topped with shredded parmesan cheese and basil

8. Tomato Alphabet Soup

"One can of the cheapest whole tomatoes put in the robot mixer to make it liquidy, then put it in a pan, bring it to boil, add a bouillon cube and spices, a bit of water, and alphabet pasta. Cook until the pasta is done and add more water or milk to make it into your desired soup consistency. Makes enough soup for two to three small kids for dinner and takes less than 10 minutes."


9. Chicken Thighs and Ramen

a bowl of ramen with shredded chicken, a soft-boiled egg, and scallions

10. Breakfast for Dinner

"Lately, I've been doing breakfast for dinner. Thankfully the price of eggs is at a decent price. The bulk of my spending is on the sides such as potatoes, bacon, and/or sausage. My favorite is a breakfast casserole with sausage: very filling and can always make two meals from it. Oh, and it reheats nicely in the microwave."


11. Pasta with Peas

pasta with tuna and lemons

12. "Totchos"

"Totchos are a favorite cheap, quick meal for our family. Fry some tots and make some taco meat (seasoning packet and ground beef). Put the tots on a pan, put the meat over the top, sprinkle with cheese, and stick it in the oven until the cheese melts. Feeds us for probably less than $10 once all is said and done."


13. Rice and Beans

a bowl of red beans, sauce, and white rice

14. Cabbage and Noodles

"Cabbage and noodles: it's easy, fast, and cheap. We eat it about once a month year-round, but it is particularly nice as a lazy TV and blankets comfort food in the winter."


15. Goulash

a plate of goulash with veggies and ground beef

16. Scrappy Cooking

"I buy whatever meat is on sale and have learned to make 'unpopular' veggie side dishes because they are cheaper, such as beets, collard greens, and squash. We also eat a lot of rice and I learned to bake bread because buying good quality bread in stores is just too much. 

Another win is the dollar rack at the grocery store: fruits and veggies on the cusp of going bad sell for $1 or $1.50. I buy those and either use them that night, or I cook them on low in the oven to dehydrate them and then my kids have dried fruits or veggies to take to school as snacks."

—Anonymous, 34, Maryland

17. Eggs and Feta Cheese

a breakfast pastry with a fried and feta

18. Multi-use Rotisserie Chicken

"Rotisserie chickens are so cost efficient! I can sometimes get three meals out of a chicken. I shred the whole chicken. Some is used to top off two days' worth of salads for lunches, another part makes enchiladas for dinner, and then I cook the carcass for broth and make a quick soup!"

—Sandy, Pennsylvania

19. Buffalo Chicken Sandwiches

a buffalo chicken sandwich with a large lettuce leaf, pickles, and blue cheese dressing

20. Hamburger Casserole

"Hamburger casserole is probably a total of $20 if that! All you need is one pound of ground beef, one bag of frozen tater tots, one can of cream of chicken, 3/4 cup of milk, one can of canned peas, one cup of shredded cheddar cheese, and 1/4 cup of fried onion. 

Place pack of frozen tater tots in baking dish. Cook the ground beef and fried onion together and season as you like (I personally use salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, and paprika). Pour the cooked ground beef on top of the tater tots. Pour the milk and can of cream of chicken on top, then spread evenly over the meat and tater tots. 

Sprinkle the cheese and peas on top and continue to layer everything. Bake it at 350ºF for an hour, covered. Lastly, sprinkle the final layer of cheese on top, uncover, and broil for five minutes. It's SO good and leftovers are even better! My kids and boyfriend LOVE this meal!"

—Emma, 30, Michigan

If there are any inexpensive meals you love making for your family, let us know in the comments or fill out this anonymous form!