Make these quick and healthy dinners for only $2
Before you dart to the dollar menu at a fast food restaurant, try some of these tasty, healthy meals that you can make for $2 or less per serving. Here, registered dietician Sarah-Jane Bedwell shares recipes for mini-meatloaves, chili veggie spaghetti and more.
- (4) 6-ounce tilapia fillets
- salt, pepper, to taste
- 2 tsp dried thyme (1/2 tsp for each fillet)
- 1 cup of frozen mixed veggies (still frozen)
- 2 lemon slices
- 8 tsp olive oil (2 tsp per fillet)
- Serve over 1/2 cupcooked whole grain brown rice.
Mild, white fish, like tilapia, is one of the lowest calorie sources of protein-good news is that it is low in cost too! This fish dinner is cooked in a packet with the veggies to keep all the great flavor and moisture in! Frozen mixed veggies are a nutritional bargin-pay just a quarter for a 1-cup serving that provides 6g fiber and a whopping 115% of your daily value for vitamin A!1. Place a 4-6 ounce tilapia fillet in the center of a large square (1 ft by 1.5 ft) out of aluminum foil.2. Top the fish with 1 cup of frozen mixed veggies and sprinkle fish and veggies with salt, pepper and dried thyme. 3. Drizzle with olive oil and top with a lemon slice. 4. Roll foil up to secure packet and for baking. 5.Then I will open one packet (that has been baked for about 20 minutes at 450 degrees until fish is done and flakes easily with a fork and veggies are crisp-tender)and show plated with ½ cup whole grain brown rice.Total cost for this tasty low-calorie meal: $1.45 per serving.
- 1 lb lean ground beef
- 1/3 cup rolled oats
- 1 beaten egg
- 1/2 cup chopped onion
- 1/4 tsp each salt and pepper
- 2 tbsp marinara sauce
- large dash of worcesterchire sauce
Lean ground beef goes a long way in these meatloaves. We add oats that bulk them up so we can use less beef and provide 4g cholesterol-lowering soluble fiber per 1/2 cup for just 13 cents. Plus, they are perfectly portioned!1. Mix 1 lb lean ground beef with 1/3 cup rolled oats, 1 beaten egg, 1/2-cup chopped onion, ¼ tsp each salt and pepper, 2 tbsp marinara sauce and a dash of worcesterchire sauce (will get anchor involved with pouring ingredients into mixing bowl). 2. Using an ice cream scooper, start to divide the mixture among a 12-cup muffin tin (won’t do all of them though, obviously).3. Show two mini meatloaves (that have been baked at 375 degrees for about 25 min) and plated with 1/2 medium baked potato (topped with small pat of butter) and one cup frozen steamed veggies on the side while drizzling the two plated meatloaves with two tablespoons marinara sauce. Total cost for this perfectly-portioned dinner: $1.33 per serving.
- 4 cups of whole grain spaghetti, cooked according to package directions (1 cup per tower)
- 4 cups of your favorite meatless chili that has been warmed according to directions on can (1 cup per tower)
- 4 cups frozen steamed broccoli (1 cup per tower)
- 1 cup of cooked frozen shelled edamame (1/4 cup per tower)
- 8 tbsp shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese (2 tbsp per tower)
Skip the meatballs and add flavorful bean chili to your spaghetti to save money and calories! Use whole-grain pasta to provide even more essential nutrients. For just 24 cents, you’ll get 7g of protein and 6g of fiber from the pasta! For just 28 cents more, you can add 1/4 cup edamame to provide another 5g protein and 4g fiber! That’s a great value when you consider that soybeans are the only complete vegetable protein, delivering all nine of the amino acids that help build fat-burning muscle!1. Spoon one cup of whole-grain spaghetti (that has been cooked according to package directions) on a plate.2. Meanwhile, have anchor stir bean chili that has been warming on the stove. 3. Ladel about a cup of the chili on top of the spaghetti.4. Then top with 1 cup frozen steamed broccoli, 1/4 cup of cooked frozen shelled edamame and 2 tbsp shredded lowfat cheese. Total cost for this family-pleasing meal: $1.67 per serving.