Feeding your family on a budget isn’t hard. But if you want to do it without eating pasta every single night, it can be a bit more challenging. Sure, pasta is wonderful, but even a good thing can become tired over time. If you are looking to break out of the pasta rut while keeping things affordable, check out the five meals below.
One fun way to keep things cheap is to look at what other cultures eat when trying to keep things affordable. In Mexico, chilaquiles are the answer. While this dish will remind you of nachos, it is actually quite different, and very easy to customize. It works for any meal, and is very filling. This casserole version of the dish is a great introduction for those who aren’t familiar with chilaquiles.
Another way to go? Take a look at recipes that were popular in the past. Potato latkes, while delicious no matter the era, were very popular during the depression. Even now, this is a dish you can make for just pennies. It is filling, easy to customize to your tastes, and will please pretty much anyone in your house.
Something that people do all around the world to make the most of their budget is ensure they never waste anything. So next time you cook a ham for a special meal—perhaps Easter—be sure to save the ham bone and make this soup. While this is a simple and affordable recipe, it is also very tasty and should keep your family feeling nice and full.
In many cultures, the cheapest protein you can access are beans. As such, many cheap meals will center around them. These crispy black bean tacos can be made for a few dollars and will feed the entire family. As with the other recipes on this list, they are also easy to customize as you can add whatever you like, building on the basic recipe.
The other cheap staple food loved around the world? Rice. Combine it with beans and add some chicken and you have a solid meal. Once again, you can easily build on this, turning it into a burrito bowl, embracing different flavor profiles from different cultures, and just generally making it your own.