Top 12 Budget Friendly Meals

Top 12 Budget Friendly Meals

Cutting back on food costs doesn’t have to mean cutting back on flavor when it comes to budget cooking. Some of the world’s most popular pantry and fridge staples also happen to be dishes we all know and love — like beans and rice, veggie pasta and our own personal favorite, grilled cheese. If you’re looking for cheap dinner recipes, we’ve got you covered with this collection of our top 12 budget-friendly meals.

  1. Broccoli, Chicken and Cauliflower “Rice” Casserole: Chicken and Rice is a classic family favorite, but this version packs in extra nutrition using cauliflower “rice” as the base.
    Broccoli, Chicken and Cauliflower “Rice” Casserole
  2. Buffalo Chicken Spaghetti Squash: If you’ve never tried spaghetti squash, you’re in for a treat. Not only is it an affordable, low-calorie veggie, but it’s also a neat way to have a “noodle” style dish without the noodles.
    Buffalo Chicken Spaghetti Squash
  3. Italian Style Pita Bread Pizzas: Pita pizzas are not only a cheap way to eat pizza at home, but also a time saver! Just assemble, cook and go. Super simple and a crowd favorite!
  4. Shepherd’s Pie with Cheddar Crust: You’d be hard-pressed to find a more family-friendly cheap dinner idea than this one. Mix it up by using leftover mashed potatoes for the "crust", frozen veggies and beans instead of meat, it’s the ultimate in cheap eats the whole family will love.
    Shepherd’s Pie with Cheddar Crust
  5. Broccoli Cheddar Quiche: Eggs often top the list of budget friendly ingredients and what better way to enjoy them than in this healthy broccoli quiche.
    Broccoli Cheddar Quiche
  6. Taco Waffle Fry Nachos: Sometimes simplicity in a recipe is all you need to cut costs. Take these waffle fry nachos as an example. By using frozen fries, a little Cabot cheddar and ground beef, they’re a family-friendly way to serve dinner on a budget. Add your favorite veggies too!
  7. Baked Chicken Florentine: Chicken breasts can be hit or miss when it comes to cutting costs on your grocery bill, so look for sales and opt for bulk-buying when possible to save. To keep your price-per-meal low, when you do choose chicken breasts opt for easy recipes like this one that rely on affordable add-ons that round out the recipe.
    Baked Chicken Florentine
  8. Freezer Bean & Cheese Burritos: By making the most of two of our favorite budget friendly strategies (cooking in batches and cooking with beans), this recipe for make-ahead freezer burritos is the ultimate choice in cheap eats.
    Freezer Bean & Cheese Burritos
  9. Baked Cheddar Frittata: Frittatas should be in rotation on any budget friendly meal plan. They’re arguably easier than quiche (no crust required) and can basically be the base to use up whatever extra ingredients you have on hand. (Think leftover cooked meats or veggies past their prime).
  10. Cheddar Spinach Egg Bites: Six simple ingredients are all you need to whip up these basic egg bites. You likely have everything you need on hand already, with possibly the exception of fresh spinach. Always check your pantry and fridge before heading to the store to make sure you don’t buy more than you need.
    Cheddar Spinach Egg Bites
  11. Cheesy Lentils and Rice: While many recipes that use dry beans require a little extra planning in terms of prep time, lentils are the quick-cooking exception. In fact, in this budget friendly combo there’s no advanced cooking needed. Simple stir the lentils, rice and remaining ingredients together for an easy, oven-baked meal.
    Cheesy Lentils and Rice
  12. Chicken Corn Tortilla Soup : What’s even better than a meal that doesn’t break the bank? A meal with almost no clean up and a 5 star rating. That’s what you get with easy soup recipe.

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