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Old 02-01-2019, 08:57 PM
 
Location: Shreveport, LA
1,110 posts, read 886,702 times
Reputation: 531

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After seeing Iíve been spending $200 a week on food just to feed myself, and since this is rediculous for a single man and means I have no extra money to save by the time I pay my bills, Iíve decided to eat on no more than $4 a day (including tax), for 2 meals a day (brunch and late dinner). Iíve been eating ramen and hot dogs the past 3 days and am already really bored and craving the more expensive food. Iíve stooped to trying to bum food off of coworkers and family to still meet my budget while eating something interesting.

Are there any interesting $1-$3 recipes out there? Iím trying to do good with this since food is the one thing Iíve always struggled to be frugal with.

Iíd like to pay off my house early so I can save even more money, or possibly use this house as a rental property if I decide to go to law school (I live in northwest louisiana, but want to practice as a law professor in southeast texas so Iím nearer the beach and can enjoy more big city stuff and lower taxes).

Sticking to this food budget is key, though, and Iím already struggling just because of the blandness.
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Old 02-01-2019, 09:04 PM
 
Location: Australia
588 posts, read 208,119 times
Reputation: 1094
Chickpea pasta. We always joke we can feed a hundred people for about ten dollars with it.
But what sort of expensive food are you trying to give up? Would be easier to advise if we knew that.
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Old 02-01-2019, 09:13 PM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
21,474 posts, read 38,508,719 times
Reputation: 21914
I get 20 servings out of a $4.99 Costco Chicken...

salads, burritos, soup, sandwiches

Steelcut oatmeal ~$.15

If I splurge.. it will be a "Lettuce Wrap" Jr Cheese Burger at Wendy's ($1.29) I have my "free Frosty" coupon for 2019. ~ 100 - 200 expected.
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Old 02-01-2019, 09:23 PM
 
Location: San Antonio, TX
10,998 posts, read 19,579,327 times
Reputation: 25813
Ramen and hot dogs will save you some money but they're not healthy and you'll end up paying for it with your health later on.

$4/day means you're only spending $28/week. That's not sustainable long term if you want any kind of variety in your diet, and if you don't want to just fill up on cheap carbs.

If you were spending $200/week, why not aim for spending $75/week instead? You'll still be able to save $125/week, and you won't be sticking to an arbitrary dollar amount that is so low that you're doomed to failure or to future health problems from years of eating garbage.
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Old 02-01-2019, 09:28 PM
 
13,915 posts, read 23,360,952 times
Reputation: 19094
The Brothers Green have hundreds of cooking videos on how to cook on a budget. These are only a couple of literally a thousand easy to follow videos.

How To Live On $3 a Day | One Dollar Meals | Day One |

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qiSg6lwIItU

4 Meals, 4 Ingredients, 4 Dollars - College Cooking (Pt. 1)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ZMevpv7T2s

By the way, I do NOT agree that you cannot eat a healthy diet. Nearly all of the dishes these brothers prepare are healthy and easily prepared at home. My wife and I have an average grocery food bill of $200 per month and we feed the two of us and at least 50 meals a month to some of our elderly neighbors who can no longer cook. However, it required a lot of planning and preparations.
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Old 02-01-2019, 10:46 PM
 
3,398 posts, read 2,971,494 times
Reputation: 10044
Do you know how to cook?

How much are your hotdogs per pound vs other meats prices per pound like chicken breast or thighs or pork loin? I haven't done the math lately, but I know hot dogs used to be more expensive per pound than the other cuts of meat. Even something like hamburger meat may be less expensive. All of these meats can be made into many different meals. It all depends on how you want to cook them. It may be worth an investment beyond salt and pepper to maybe a few spices and/barbecue sauce to figure how to dress meat up and give it some flavor. There are a lot of free recipes on the internet.

Even if you want to stick with your ramen, you can dress it up with small pieces of meat or vegetables. There are recipes on the internet for that too.
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Old 02-01-2019, 10:48 PM
 
Location: minnesota
5,724 posts, read 1,866,938 times
Reputation: 2007
Learn to cook. Try some seasonings like garlic powder, onion powder, curry...keep olive oil on hand to add fat and omega 3s to your diet. It's good to fry your vegis in because fat aids in the absorption of the vitamins in the vegis. That video shared above was awesome. Where I live I can buy pork roast for 2.50 a lb but it's in bulk. I freeze it by the pound in 4 oz slices. 4 oz x 2 meals is perfect and that's only 1.25 a day for quality protein. Chicken legs, thighs can be had pretty cheaply too. Know what is a good price for something. Eggs are cheap and good. Stock up on frozen vegis when they are on sale. Don't throw away vegis or fruit skins(esp citrus). Most of the skins contain higher nutrients than the flesh and you'll never notice it if you sneak it into some homemade stew or chili.

I eat like that for health reasons but I've noticed how much money I saved when I cut out the processed food. When I get my vegis home I prep them all at once for the week so I can just pull whatever I want out of the bag and throw it in the pan.
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Old 02-01-2019, 11:07 PM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
21,474 posts, read 38,508,719 times
Reputation: 21914
Quote:
Originally Posted by jlawrence01 View Post
The Brothers Green have hundreds of cooking videos on how to cook on a budget. These are only a couple of literally a thousand easy to follow videos.
...
By the way, I do NOT agree that you cannot eat a healthy diet. Nearly all of the dishes these brothers prepare are healthy and easily prepared at home. My wife and I have an average grocery food bill of $200 per month and we feed the two of us and at least 50 meals a month to some of our elderly neighbors who can no longer cook. However, it required a lot of planning and preparations.
Agree... for the last 40 yrs we (2 + family) have put $100 / month in a 'food' envelope.

We have fed ourselves + family very well (and healthy) on $100 / month .

Often feeding others too...elderly, neighbors, international traveling guest we host often, monthly potlucks...

Kids planned menus and spending during 10 yrs of homeschooling and international living.
When the $100 was gone... we got creative, or went without.

We eat a lot of salmon (bought from native fisheries), and barter salmon on occasion for lamb and beef.

we have an 'edible landscape' Blueberries, herbs, greens.

Costly downfall... Homemade Ice-cream nearly every week for our guests, friends, neighbors.
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Old 02-02-2019, 01:46 AM
 
Location: Old Hippie Heaven
17,072 posts, read 7,615,203 times
Reputation: 9777
You're gonna have to learn to cook. All around the world, peasants eat grains and legumes. There must be a zillion different tasty ways to eat this combination.

Nothing really wrong with ramen and hot dogs once in a while, but there are much better ideas out there.

Tons of resources online and in your library.
https://www.leannebrown.com/cookbooks/ - free cookbook to download.
The World's Healthiest Foods - many easy recipes using standard supermarket food
Jeff Novick videos
Michael Greger videos

You don't have to go full vegetarian if you don't want to, but you will need to less meat.
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Old 02-02-2019, 10:47 AM
 
Location: Mid-Atlantic
23,746 posts, read 22,698,167 times
Reputation: 29055
Were the hot dogs on sale? That's what I thought.
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