Jan 26, 2016

Something Tasty {2 Cheap & Easy Dinner Ideas}

I'm all for finding recipes that use 5 ingredients or less, that are easy on the pocketbook and are easy to throw together. Plus, these two recipes happen to come in under 300 calories per serving!

 Two super easy and super cheap meals that really work for me and my family. Oh and they're tasty too! I wanted to share them with you and pass on the love!

Have you ever made split pea soup? It is about the easiest and cheapest meal I have on my roster. A 16 ounce bag of dried peas is less than a dollar, the chicken stock is around three dollars, and if you want to use a ham bone, those are around two dollars or less! I get at least 6 servings out of one crockpot. That's about $1 a serving. It will feed us all for dinner and then leftovers for lunch the next day. The ham bone gives it almost like a smokey flavor but you could leave that out if you wanted to. You could use veggie stock instead and keep it meat free.

So here's the basics for Split Pea and Ham Bone Soup:

16 oz bag dried peas
4 cups chicken broth
ham bone (optional)
garlic powder, onion powder, s&p (optional)
***approx 250 calories per serving***

1. Sort through your peas and make sure to toss out any hard ones

2. Add chicken stock and ham bone to the peas in the crockpot. I also like to add some garlic and onion powder, salt and pepper.

Cook for about 6 - 8 hours. I remove the ham bone first, get the meat off and then add it back to soup. You can use an immersion blender to blend together but I just stir it and it comes together!

At this point it is not so pretty as the bright green peas it started out as but it's tastier!

I like to serve it with a grilled cheese sammie or a side salad.
 Each serving is about 250 calories so you will feel good about indulging in this creamy soup! If you're thinking....ewwwwww peas! Green soup are you kidding me? Just try it...I know you'll love it.

The second easy meal is a recipe I found on Pinterest a few years back and have just kept in my brain for those days that I want to have what smells and tastes like a Sunday dinner but can be made in 20 minutes on a busy Monday night!

Here are the basics on Roast Beef and Potato Rolls:

6 - 8 oz Sliced Roast Beef
2 -3 cups mashed potatoes
brown gravy (make your own or buy pre-made) to make your own bring beef stock to a boil and add cornstarch to thicken. Season with salt, pepper, garlic powder and onion powder
 4 oz shredded cheese (optional)
***approx 214 calories per serving***

Start with good quality sliced roast beef. You could cook your own, buy it from your butcher, whatever your heart desires. I kept this one on budget and used Oscar Mayer Natural Roast Beef (no added yucky stuff). I like the beautiful red color - it wasn't nasty brown!

Go ahead and have your mashed potatoes ready to go. Make your own or use instant. Whatever works for you. I won't judge you! There is no need to salt them or add butter or anything.

You're making a little roast beef and tater burrito!

Add your roast beef and potato rolls to a 9 x 13 pan that you sprayed with cooking spray. Line them all up cute and snuggly like.

When you're done with lining up your rolls, pour your beef gravy over the top. I like making my own because I can control the ingredients/sodium/etc. You could omit the gravy all together if you wanted to,

Should look a little something like this. You can stop at this point and put them in the oven now. Or you can add some cheese to the top.

This is about 4 ounces of low fat cheddar.

Pop in a 350 degree oven for about 20 - 25 minutes.

I cut it into 6 squares. Each square is about 214 calories.

I serve this with a nice big pile of green beans and a salad! I like how the protein, dairy and veggie are all contained into one roll! You might be saying...potatoes?! They're not good for me. But hey - even white potatoes have been added to Whole30. They're not as bad as you think they are! It's what you do with the potato that makes it worse for you...deep frying, etc.

Thanks for letting me share! Let me know if you try either one!


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