With cheap meatless meals you can get adequate nutrients such as protein, reduce extra fats and save money too; my reason for writing How to Survive Inflation with the Rising Cost of Food.
Many people fear eating meatless meals will not provide enough protein in their diet. Although protein is very important to the diet, most people who consume animal products for their protein get way too much. Knowing the basics a diet based primarily on plant sources can provide the requirements for the body’s protein. Even if you like to eat meat, it is a good idea to have your protein from grains and vegetables in some meals.
Serving several cheap meatless meals a month is a way for budget cooking. When you are learning how to grocery shop, you will realize it is the meats than run up the register slip. Many delicious cheap recipes can be prepared by leaving out the meat like pasta recipes. Unlike animal products, plant foods generally do not contain complete proteins. Some grains like quinoa are very high in protein and can be prepared alone.
Plant foods contain certain amounts of complementary protein s that when consumed in combination with specific other complementary proteins become complete. The thinking is that as long as the right complementary proteins are consumed in the same day complete proteins will be available for the body’s needs.
In preparing cheap meatless meals, dried beans and grains play a very important part of the diet. Legumes including dry beans, peas and lentils offer great nutritional value. They provide low fat and low sodium cholesterol free source of protein. They are also high in complex carbohydrates and fiber. They are also loaded with many vitamins and minerals including iron and calcium.
Grains like barley, bulgur, corn, oats, quinoa, rice, rye, wheat and wild rice are the edible seed kernels of cereal plants and grasses. They are an excellent source of inexpensive protein and complex carbohydrates which play an important part when preparing cheap meatless meals.
By using the following chart you can prepare wonderful tasting dishes and get your protein in your diet.
Combine an ingredient from list 1 with an ingredient from list 2. Add a salad and rolls and you have a great meal.
Most of these ingredients will help with your cheap living. I cook some of these in large quantities and have them handy for leftover recipes. This works well for retirees doing cheap retirement living. Package these items in small quantities for 1 or 2 and prepare as you need them.
LAYERED MEXICAN DIP RECIPE
Mix together sour cream and salsa in a small bowl.
Spread bean dip in shallow glass bowl.
Top with sour cream and salsa mixture, spreading to cover bean dip.
Just before serving, top with lettuce, tomato and cheese; garnish with cilantro and serve with chips.
MEXICAN BEANS AND RICE RECIPE
Over medium heat, sauté rice mixture, green pepper, onion and garlic until golden brown.
Stir in water, tomatoes, pepper sauce and seasoning packet; bring to a boil over high heat.
Cover, reduce heat and simmer 15 minutes; stir in beans.
Cover and continue to simmer 5 minutes or until liquid is absorbed.
Top with cheese and cilantro.
VEGETABLE RISOTTO RECIPE
Cook zucchini and squash in 1 tablespoon hot oil over high until crisp.
Place in medium bowl and set aside.
Add mushrooms, onions and garlic to saucepan; cook until tender.
Add tomatoes and oregano; cook until tomatoes are soft; place in bowl with zucchini mixture.
Wipe saucepan clean with paper towels.
Bring stock to a boil in saucepan, reduce heat and keep hot.
Add remaining tablespoon oil in pan over medium heat; add rice and cook for 2 minutes.
Add hot stock, reduce heat and simmer until liquid is absorbed; about 30 minutes.
Stir in cheese, all vegetables, salt and pepper; cook until heated thoroughly and serve immediately.
BREAKFAST TACOS RECIPE
Cook green pepper and onion in butter in skillet until tender.
Stir in eggs, ¼ cup sauce, garlic salt and cumin.
Stir over medium low heat stirring frequently until eggs are set.
Remove from heat and stir in 1 cup cheese.
Fill taco shells with egg mixture, top with sliced avocado, 1 tablespoon of remaining cheese and 1 tablespoon remaining sauce.