Healthy and Nutritious Meals for Less Than $2


Food takes a huge chunk on your budget. You can cut back on food expenses, though, by making smart choices. On top of that, you won’t have to spend more than two dollars of each of these inexpensive but nutritious choices.

Braised Chicken Thighs

The recipe costs only about $1.6 per serving, and for that you get a good dose of choline and protein. With carrots and potatoes, you get vitamins a and c. Chicken thighs are cheaper than chicken breasts, but you still get similar nutrients. They taste just the same, too.

You need a piece of onion (sliced), four potatoes (diced), two cups of carrots, a teaspoon of salt, half a teaspoon of pepper, 1/4 cup of chicken broth, 1/4 cup white wine, half a teaspoon of dried thyme, a teaspoon of minced garlic, a teaspoon of paprika, slices of lemon (garnish), and 6 skinned chicken thighs.

Grease a 6-quart slow cooker, and sauté onions. Add carrots and potatoes. Dash 3/4 teaspoon of salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Add broth. Mix in paprika and the rest of salt and pepper. Rub the mixture over chicken thighs, and place on over the vegetables. Cook on low heat for 8 hours.

Baked Salmon Potatoes

You can do this with smoked salmon and 4 large potatoes. You would need 1/2 cup green onions (sliced), 1/3 cup non-fat milk, 3.5 tablespoons of softened butter, 3 tablespoons of horseradish, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1 ounce grated Parmesan cheese, and 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper.

Bake potatoes in 450ºF heat for 50 minutes. Dial oven temperature down to 400ºF. Cut the potatoes half. Scoop out the pulp and leave a shell that’s about a quarter of an inch thick. Mix the potato pulp, onions, and other ingredients in a large bowl. Put this mixture into the potato shells. Spread cheese on top. Bake for 15 minutes.

Each serving should be around $1.9. This meal gives you protein, omega-3, and vitamin c. You can use canned salmon instead of smoked salmon to get more calcium.

Shrimp and Grits

Don’t let the name fool you. It’s a cheap recipe. Buy frozen shrimp, which is much cheaper than the fresh variety. A box of shrimp costs around $8, but that makes many servings. Grits, on the other hand, are super cheap, around $3 per bag, an amount that makes twenty or so servings.

Cooking is easy. Saute garlic for 2 minutes. Add chicken broth and water, and let it simmer. Toss in green onions, red pepper, and grits. Stir in Parmesan cheese when the grits are done. Saute onions and then add the shrimp soaked in lime juice. Mix until the shrimp turn pink. Add some parsley. Lay the shrimp on top of the grits.


Eggs are heaven sent. Did you know a simple egg is a complete meal? It provides everything we need to survive.They’re cheap and easy to cook. Preparing eggs is a frill-free affair. An omelette takes no more than five minutes to do. You can add other things, like boiled beans or mushroom, to make it interesting. Or you can spice it up with onions. In fact leftovers go well in an omelette, try adding diced potatoes and any leftover meats fro a complete meal.

Rice with Black Beans

For less than a dollar, you can create this great meal. Beans are rich in fiber and protein. You may want to try different recipes of beans for a few meatless days. To save, buy the dried ones. Soak them overnight, and then cook them next morning until tender.

For this particular combo, you need 2 teaspoons of kosher salt, 2.5 tablespoons of olive oil, 2 cups of long grain rice, a cup of chopped onion, 1 cup chopped red pepper, a tablespoon of minced garlic, 30 ounces of black beans, a cup of chicken broth, and 2 tablespoons of red wine vinegar.

Boil 4 cups of water, 1 teaspoon of salt, and 1 teaspoon of olive oil in a saucepan. Put the rice in. Dial down the heat. Cover it, and allow to cook for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, saute onion, red pepper, and garlic for 5 minutes in another saucepan. Add the beans, vinegar, broth, black pepper, salt, cumin, and bay leaves. Lower the heat when the broth boils. Simmer for ten minutes. Throw the bay leaves away. Take the beans out using a spoon or a strainer, and set them over rice.