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Quick, Easy, and Cheap – Five Family Meal Ideas

Family Meal Ideas

Groceries are expensive. Time is money. And who wants to spend hours in the kitchen each night? It’s much more fun to spend that time with family or relaxing. The good news is you don’t have to sweat over a hot stove. You don’t need to spend a fortune either. Here are five quick, easy and cheap family meal ideas.

#1 Beans and rice – Beans and rice can be prepared so many ways it’s amazing. From Mexican style beans and rice, to Cajun style, there’s a recipe for everyone’s tastes. From the south? Try Hoppin John. It’s delicious. Best of all, it’s cheap and easy too. And when combined, beans and rice provide a complete protein. No meat required for this meal. Buy canned beans and rice in bulk to really save money.

#2 Roast chicken – Who doesn’t love a good old-fashioned roast chicken? Whole chickens are inexpensive and they generally provide enough food for more than one meal. You can use the leftovers for a tasty chicken salad served on a bed of greens or a chicken noodle casserole. There are also two time-saving ways to manage a roast chicken. You can buy a whole roasted chicken already cooked at your grocery’s deli. Or you can roast one on the weekend and reheat it for mealtime. (You can also cut the roasting time in half by splitting the chicken down the middle).

#3 Fish and a salad – Fish actually only takes a few minutes to cook. And when you buy fish like tilapia and orange roughy you can get it at a very low cost. Grab a bag salad and you have a very healthy meal you can prepare for a few dollars. And it’ll take less than ten minutes to prepare.

#4 Soup and stew – Soups and stews are really inexpensive. When paired with bread and a salad they’re also quite satisfying and healthy. You can buy premixed soup and stew items at the store. Just add them to your crock pot in the morning and they’re ready when you get home. You can also make them on the weekend and reheat when it’s time to eat.

#5 Pasta – You can do almost anything with pasta. Pasta primavera. Pasta with tomato sauce. Pasta with sardines, capers and lemon. There are literally hundreds of pasta recipes. Best of all, pasta is quick. It’s cheap and it’s tasty. You really can’t go wrong with pasta. Add a salad and you have a complete meal.

With a little patience and planning you can serve your family quick and easy meals ever night of the week. And you can save money doing it.


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About Kelli Miller

My husband (Ricky) of 15 years, our three wild and wonderfully different little boys, one totally spoiled little dog named Annie, and I live in a small town on the coast of Southern Alabama.


  1. These are great ideas!

    For yet another variation on beans-and-rice, try Honey Baked Lentils. Super cheap, super easy (my 8-year-old can make this himself), and although they take an hour to bake, you can do something else while they’re baking or make them in advance and reheat in the microwave…or, I have a link to a Crockpot version, although I haven’t tried it myself because I don’t have a Crockpot.
    ‘Becca´s last blog post ..Liebster Award: 11 Great Blogs!

  2. Susie @Bowdabra says:

    Thank you for sharing your nifty project with us! Come by again next week and link up another awesome project!

    Have a good week!
    Susie @bowdabra

  3. Love these inexpensive dinner ideas! Perfect for any meal planning mom!

    Your post was one of the most clicked posts at the Mommy Solution party last week! Read about your feature here:
    Crystal & Co´s last blog post ..Top 5 Mom Ideas This Week (3/17/13)

  4. I am now not positive the place you are getting your info, however great topic.
    I needs to spend some time finding out more or understanding more.
    Thank you for excellent info I used to be in search
    of this info for my mission.
    Scot´s last blog post ..Scot

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