Eating on the cheap

Discussion in 'Lifestyle, Health, Fitness & Food' started by The Atomic Ass, Jun 24, 2011.

  1. The Atomic Ass

    The Atomic Ass Redefining Sound

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    It has come to the point where I have so little income as to want to maximize it's use. New gear purchases are breathing down my neck to be made. :lol:

    Right now I'm taking home <$100 weekly. My major expense, therefore, is food. I'm trying to come up with a healthy, cheap diet that also jives with my desire to not spend time cooking.

    My first thought was plain rice (white or brown), but this would probably be nutritionally-lacking in some aspect, most notably protein. So, I'd like to know what people here think would be essential to a low-cost diet. Anything that could be cooked with rice would be a plus, and I have no food allergies, though I prefer to avoid yellow corn. White corn is fine, though.

    I'm also going to try to have only stuff that can be kept at room temperature, so I can unplug my fridge. That isn't a set-in-stone requirement, though.

    So, any suggestions?
     
  2. The Grief Hole

    The Grief Hole SS.org Regular

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    Rice is pretty devoid of nutrition but I guess it fills a hole.

    Firstly try and stop eating convenience store snacks, packaged foods etc. They can eat holes in your pocket. Eat a banana or an orange instead of candy or chips. a banana can fill you up and will slowly release energy into your body. Also you can keep most fruit and things like eggs and bread at room temperature.

    I eat a lot of tinned sardines on toast with sliced tomatoes and ketchup. The sardines are really good for you. Tomatoes are good for the heart and ketchup tastes good. (But most people hate them).
     
  3. Thrashmanzac

    Thrashmanzac plays in 69/42

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    potatoes and sausages - poor student food
     
  4. jymellis

    jymellis Talk To DeWalt

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    neighborhood animals.
     
  5. MUTANTOID

    MUTANTOID SS.org Regular

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    Cause they are good for the hands...
     
  6. Scar Symmetry

    Scar Symmetry Ex Whiny Bitch

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    Chilli Con Carne + rice.
    Peri peri Chicken + rice.
    Sushi.

    Basically what I live on. :lol:
     
  7. Winspear

    Winspear Tom Winspear

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    The cheapest rice and pasta in the store. The cheapest oatmeal for breakfast. That area should be just penies per day.

    The expensive part will be fruit and veg, though that can still be cheaper than a lot of things people eat!

    You mentioned protein, no protein rich food is cheap, really. The cheapest source of protein is whey protein, by a mile. If you can stand eating dinners with no 'main course' such as rice with no chicken.
     
  8. Aaron

    Aaron SS.org Regular

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    Ramen.
     
  9. Blake1970

    Blake1970 SS.org Regular

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    I just had ramen the other night and added two eggs :agreed:


     
  10. The Atomic Ass

    The Atomic Ass Redefining Sound

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    After going to an organic diet, CS snacks went bye-bye. I still eat some packaged foods, but not much. I bought a bag of oranges once. Lets just say I fail at oranges, even with Google, and leave it at that. :lol:

    Bananas are going on the list. I've been looking around for bread recipes to see if it's cheaper to make my own bread, or just buy it pre-made. As for sardines, I'm a little wary of seafood at the moment. (and probably for a good few years yet).
     
  11. Guitarmiester

    Guitarmiester Awesome-O

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    Buy a big back of boneless chicken. It should last a few days and your options are limitless, from stir fry with rice and vegetables, chicken Parmesan, chicken cordon bleu, shrimp chicken, chicken gumbo, chicken chicken, bubble gum chicken...

    Bananas are great source of potassium and energy and usually dirt cheap by the pound. The other week they were $0.49 per lb. As a runner, they make for a great, cheap "snack." You can make your own protein bars, which is way cheaper than buying them. Oats are dirt cheap, too. Whey protein can be a bit costly, but still beats out paying $2-$4 per protein bar.
     
  12. ry_z

    ry_z Ikebana Noise Club

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    Rice and lentils. Extremely cheap, ridiculously versatile, and together they're a complete protein. :yesway:
     
  13. Razzy

    Razzy [10]

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    I was in a similar situation when I was in California, and this is a nifty trick to make Ramen noodles not taste like shit.

    Ramen noodles, cook in microwave, drain the water, throw the seasoning packet away, mix with refried beans, and reheat it.

    If you can afford it, cheese is a nice addition, but I was so poor in California, I couldn't afford it.
     
  14. ellengtrgrl

    ellengtrgrl SS.org Regular

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    When I was a poor college student a long tim ago, and also when I was going through rough financial times between 1999 & 2004, I used to eat quite a few peanut butter sandwiches. Peanut butter has a fair amount of protein, and you don't have to spend a bundle for it. You can get all high fallutin about the bread, but you don't need to. Ditto for macaroni & cheese. You can use milk to make it, but you don't have to.

    Cold cereal is another good low cost meal. You don't have to eat it just for breakfast. And, if you stay away from the high sugar, and high fat content types (like granola), and stick to the house brand instead of namebrand (Kellogs, Post, etc.) cereals, you can get by surprisingly cheap.

    In general, unless it tastes absolutly awful, try to avoid buying namebrand food products. If you want fresh, get it from a farmer's market, it's cheaper, and and fresher than the stuff at the supermarket. Also, try to stay away from the deli counter, since the stuff sold there is kind of pricey. Specialty stores like Whole Foods sell cool natural/organic stuff, but it's uber pricey IMO, so I stay away from them.
     
  15. Overtone

    Overtone SS.org Regular

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    Try eating vegetarian foods made from scratch. For starters you should learn how to make sauce from canned tomatoes... that way as long as you have canned tomatoes, garlic, seasoning, a splash of oil/butter and one more ingredient (say pasta, or green beans, or eggplant) you can make a meal. Also learn to prepare dried beans... it's easier than it sounds, and they are one of the cheapest ingredients available. Try... spicy black beans, cannelini bean dip with garlic, lemon juice, parsley and olive oil, cannelinis cooked with canned tomatoes and greens (kale or swiss chard preferably), and bean salad (one to three types of beans, plus diced onions, peppers, cilantro/parsley, vinegar, olive oil, cucumber/tomato optional). Potato salad is another easy one... try doing it with a homemade mustard vinaigrette (cheaper than mayo), diced shallots and parsley. That reminds me, learn to make your own salad dressing, it's easy. Finally I agree that lentils are great. They cook faster than beans and are just as good. I like an Arabic dish called mujadarra a lot, but lentil soup and daal are both great as well. Eggs too are cheap and easy.

    Having most of your meals be based around legumes, grains, etc. will make it so you don't have to spend as much on dairy and meat.

    Finally think about Costco if you can get the fee money together.
     
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  16. Gryphon

    Gryphon SS.org Regular

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    Yes, you don't hear enough about this.:yesway:
     
  17. cwhitey2

    cwhitey2 BlackendCrust Metalâ„¢

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    i live on this shiz


    also buy spices...you can cook the same thing all week and just change the flavor :cool: thats what i do :fawk:
     
  18. highlordmugfug

    highlordmugfug themuthaphukkindeath

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    Rice, lentils, and potatoes are awesome and cheap.

    There are tons and tons of chili variations that you could make that cost ~$20 and would last 4 days (assuming you have a big enough pot and a fridge that can hold it).
     
  19. eclipsex1

    eclipsex1 SS.org Regular

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    Get girlfriend who can cook and hang out at her house all the time? :lol:

    Have you checked to see if you qualify for foodstamps or any other sort of welfare?
     
  20. SirMyghin

    SirMyghin The Dirt Guy Contributor

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    Try not to eat too much grains, grains are pretty worthless nutritionally. Rice,pasta,oatmeal, etc are all high starch and calories, but overall not too grand. Oatmeal (whole oats) is probably the most nutritious on the list.
     

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