Healthy $1 Dinner Recipes – Easy Budget Meals! – Mind Over Munch

Hey munchers. Welcome back and welcome if
you’re new I’m Alyssia. About a month ago I shared a video for a campaign to help
the American Foundation for Children with AIDS where I was challenged to make
breakfast lunch and dinner for under $2. You guys seemed to love
it and requested more budget meals so today I am sharing $1 dinner
recipes and if you want this to become a miniseries for breakfast, lunch and more
for $1 or less let me know in the comments below and thumbs-up wouldn’t
hurt. So all the meals that I’m sharing today are less than $1 per
serving. Now that doesn’t mean that the ingredients cost $1 it means
that through budget shopping and sales at affordable places like Aldi and
the dollar store or in bulk places like Costco you can spend less than $1
per serving on these meals. You may choose to buy certain items higher
quality, so if you want organic produce or meat or eggs of course those will be
a bit more. The $1 calculation that I’m sharing today was made using
the most affordable ingredients available. The point isn’t really that
$1 number but more so to show you that if you shop around you can
really make some healthy meals for very little money which a lot of people are
convinced cannot be done. First up is a completely vegan dish, my black bean
burgers. For this recipe you will need black beans. Now it is cheaper if you
want to buy dry beans and rehydrate them but I am frankly too lazy and canned
beans can be pretty darn cheap too. You can get it for less than $0.60 a
can if you shop around. Pumpkin. Canned pumpkin is also affordable and a lot of
people don’t realize is available year-round. Plus it’s adding extra nutrition. You’ll
also need oats which, budget tip, are cheaper if you buy in bulk bins, as well
as onion, garlic, olive oil, cumin, chili powder, paprika, and salt. Add all of your
ingredients into your food processor and blend it on up. Another tip on spices buying
bulk spices will significantly lower the price per ounce and a little goes a long
way. Transfer your mixture into a large mixing bowl and divided into fourths
like so. This mixture will be a bit wet so transferring to the fridge for a few
minutes before can help make it easier to work with. Spray down a large pan over
medium heat and place on a quarter of your mixture shaping it into a nice patty. Cook for about 5 minutes
before flipping and cooking up the other side. You can also bake these in
the oven if preferred and I will include all of these recipes and cooking times
in the recipe PDF in the description. Serve as you’d like. I chose my favorite toppings with a bun
but you could of course do a lettuce wrap or bread or even tortilla if you
prefer. The total cost for this meal only $0.61 per serving. That does not include the toppings but
it does include the bun. Thumbs up for affordable weeknight meals. Next up are my asian chicken kabobs or
skewers. This dish is great because the protein and veggies are all in one place.
You’ll want to start by soaking your wooden skewers for 1-2 hours so they
don’t burn in the oven. I just add mine to a shallow dish or pan with some water
and weigh them down to keep them submerged. For this recipe you will need
chicken thighs, budget tip, thighs will almost always be cheaper than breasts.
They aren’t as lean but dark meat is still high in protein and it’s actually
higher in iron too, plus a little bit of extra fat is going to add a lot of
flavor and make it much more moist. You will also need bell pepper. I went
with green because it is usually more affordable than other varieties, onion,
zucchini which are so cheap especially in season and that is another budget
tip shop seasonal, soy sauce, olive oil, sesame oil, cilantro fresh herbs are
going to add so much flavor to our budget meals, and salt and pepper. Let’s
start by making our sauce. In a small mixing bowl add your soy sauce, olive oil,
sesame oil, cilantro, and salt and pepper. Whisk to combine. Now let’s load up our
skewers. Place the skewers onto a large baking sheet lined with foil and sprayed
and I like to use a baking rack so I don’t have to flip them halfway through.
Now it’s time to brush on your sauce mixture. Once nice and coated bake in
oven preheated to 450 degrees fahrenheit for about 20 to 25 minutes until the
chicken is completely cooked through. Remember you could always use tofu as a
vegan protein option for this dish. I also served it with some rice on the
sign because for me a dinner just isn’t complete without some carby goodness.
Total cost per serving $0.57 and yup that does include the rice. Rice is
another super cheap ingredient especially if you’re buying it in bulk and
cooking it up yourself. Lastly we’ve got my new favorite thing ever spaghetti pie. I don’t even really like spaghetti but I
do like it if its pie. This dish is another option for the vegetarians or
anyone looking for meat free options. #MeatlessMonday say what!!! For this recipe you will need cooked
spaghetti and I recommend cooking 3 to 4 minutes less than the package
recommends for al dente because it will cook up a little bit more in the oven,
black beans or your favorite beans of choice or ground meat if you want the
protein, onion, garlic, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, salt and pepper, garlic powder,
eggs, Parmesan cheese, ricotta or cottage cheese which can often be cheaper but
both will work, mozzarella cheese and when it comes to cheese it’s always cheaper to
buy the block and shredded yourself, and fresh parsley. Spray down a pan over
medium heat and add your chopped onions. Saute until translucent and then add
your garlic, black beans, and garlic powder. Sautéing the onions and garlic
first is going to add soo much flavor which again is so important in those
budget meals. Affordable does not have to mean bland. In a large mixing bowl add
your tomato sauce, cottage cheese, eggs, parmesan, parsley, and salt and pepper.
Whisk to combine and then add your diced tomatoes and your onion bean mixture. Mix
again and then fold in your cooked spaghetti gently. Grab a sprayed
springform pie pan and pour in your mixture and sprinkle on your shredded
mozzarella cheese. Bake in an oven preheated at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for
40-45 minutes. If the cheese starts to brown too much on top then about
halfway through add a sheet of foil to cover. Allow to cool for about 20
minutes and then you can run an offset spatula around the outside, pop it open,
and cut into wedges. Now there’s nothing left to do but enjoy. It really is so
delicious and what a fun dish that can be healthy and affordable. I hope you
guys liked this episode, thumbs up if you want a series of $1 meals and I
will keep them coming. Also a quick announcement snapchat. I have one I haven’t
really been using it but I’m going to and I’m challenging myself to 30 days of
healthy snaps. So I’m going to share tips, recipes, tutorials, meal prep, and general
motivation for 30 days in a row starting this coming Monday, the 12th and
hopefully that will turn into a habit where I do it more to. So follow me on
snapchat alyssa sheikh and all my other social media is mind over munch. So that’s it for today I hope you all have a wonderful week and
remember it’s all a matter of Mind Over Munch.

About the author



  2. fun fact, you could do burger patties with banana peels. I made the entire class eat samples of it for a report.They liked it and they didn't know until I told them about it. totally safe and healthy.

  3. that skewers look great. As a chicken thigh addict (i like to be pasture raised chicken and that is pricey) this looks great. I might add paneer to be fancy. It is the leanest and healthiest cheese, especially made with raw milk. Panneer is often made without rennet, just a little lemon or vinegar. A nice cruelty free cheese.

  4. I'm not a black bean fan, can I substitute another bean instead? (I know beggars can't be choosers, but that one of the few ingredients I could never get myself to eat.)

  5. Maybe not a saving tip for some ppl but I'll say it anyway. Buy your spices in the Latino section on the grocery store. They come in little plastic bags and it's way cheaper. Spices lose their flavor within a year. Save your money for spices that you are gonna use often and buy a little plastic bag of items that you only use in a full moon. Just make sure you go to a place where Latinos buy stuff otherwise you are gonna end up with yellow dried oregano.

  6. man, i was with you until the spaghetti pie XD i am a great lover of just your everyday spaghetti marinara.
    i can dig the cheep meal thing, especially veg versions.

  7. being on a fixed income , definately I would like to see a budget meals series. This was the first time I have seen any of your video and must say I loved what I saw

  8. I have about a half can of pumpkin left and I've been trying to figure out what to do with it that wasn't pumpkin oats or smoothies. Thanks so much for the idea for the black bean burgers! I can't wait to try them out this week =)

  9. Does she have a link somewhere that shows the measurements of the ingredients? I'm very new to cooking and need details 😛

  10. Just made the Spaghetti Pie and it was amazing!!!!  As a pasta lover, I saw this and I thought it was a must.  Thank you for sharing this recipe I will definitely make it again 🙂

  11. Grocery Outlet Bargain Market at least in the Pacific Northwest is the absolute best ! Really , my mom shopped there way back in the day, lots of organics often at 50% and more off.

  12. Is there anything I can use instead of the canned pumpkin for the burger patties? I live in Finland and canned pumpkin is not a regular item at the grocery stores and fresh pumpkin is pretty expensive.

  13. The black bean burgers are awesome! I have been looking for a successful and tasty vegan burger recipe for ages, and this one hits all the right notes. It's a staple recipe in my house now.

  14. I generally find that eating healthy is cheaper than eating non-healthy! You could spend $5 for one McDonald's meal, or spend that money on ingredients that will feed you for several meals. Healthy food doesn't have to be expensive. One of my favorite ways to save money is cutting back on meat. There are other cheap and delicious sources of protein, like beans, lentils, and chickpeas. Also, buying meat when it goes on sale and putting it in the freezer for later is another great way to save!

  15. Hold on hold on Olive oil $0.06 Do I have to feed a prison to get that price 😀 You could say caviar if you made a 1000 of them at $0.10 too

  16. Prices are up and though I have a Costco members
    I can’t afford to pick up things there. Grocery outlet lets me Eat something

  17. They look great!
    I'm wondering can you make a twist on bitter melon, I would love to see you turning something bitter to something delicious

  18. Purchasing spices and herbs from Asian, Middle Eastern or Indian shops are usually much cheaper than at the "regular" shops and you get larger quantities too.

  19. Just found this. The spaghetti pie is interesting. I will try with whole wheat spaghetti to compliment the beans. I'm lactose intolerant so instead of ricotta I will sub greek yougurt. All I have to say is thank you for these ideas and suggestions for so many like myself who are severely budget challenged but not not food insecure. You have proven that people can eat healthy tasty food with little cash

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *