With a few basic ingredients, you can create a huge variety of meals that feed your family well. Here is the list we created during our broke years.
When Chris and I created our first “now we’re married” budget, we had $25 a week for food. This would not be a problem if we wanted to live on freeze-dried noodles and peanut butter laced with hydrogenated oil.
However, the last 6 years of my life, I helped my family run our small farm. We raised dairy goats, free range chickens, and participated in an organic co-op every week.
The year after I graduated high school, I lived and worked in the poorest country in the world. There, I inherited a love for beans and rice and that mysterious joy that accompanies contentment and simple living.
Armed with $25, a head full of farm-to-table strategies, and all the optimism of a newlywed, I was determined to eat well on our tiny budget.
The 20 Ingredients List
Over the years, I compiled a list of simple, inexpensive real food meals. I relied on these dinners through every season no matter what the sales ads and coupons offered.
Most of these meals were combinations of the same basic ingredients. Frugal, whole foods staples we adjusted with the seasons and with what we had stashed in the pantry or freezer.
With a few basic components, you can create a huge variety of meals that feed your family well.