Category Archives: $10 meal Sample

Easy and Simple; Ingredients For Better Nutrition

Easy and Simple; Nutrient-rich meals

by donR  Revised April 16, 2018

During our first class 5 years ago, Lisa Samuel ND, one of our instructors  suggested we add foods to our meals that look like they just fell from a tree, picked from a bush or just pulled out of the ground. She called them “Real Foods.” Since that day I have heard them also referred to as “whole foods,” “natural,” “unprocessed,” “unmodified.” and “non GMO'”.

It is also common to see the words “Eat The Rainbow!” which implies that meals include a variety of colorful vegetables in its natural state (as opposed to dyed) or irradiated to kill any harmful bacteria. 

Then, of course, you have the option of choosing “organic,” which assures the buyer that the food was grown without the use of harmful sprays to kill bugs, weeds, set the blossoms and prevent wilt, and fungus.

To complicate the matter of choosing which foods to serve, you need to consider what types of nutrients are present in which variety of plants.   Here we can help you decide which plants are “nutrient-rich” yet low in calories while others are high n calories with low are some examples:

  1. Grow your own leafy green vegetables in a 4′ X 4′ raised garden bed.

    Keep some leafy greens (low in calories yet high in anti-oxidents, vitamins and minerals) like kale and Romaine Lettuce in  your fridge.  Swiss Chard, which comes in a rainbow of  colors is a popular choice for salads…. Just rinse, chop and add a simple  dressing for salad or keep leaves whole and wrap one around some meat or veggies to make a roll-up.Throw in a handful of seeds and nuts for a good source of unsaturated fats & micro nutrients,  Keep leaves whole until ready to use in order to prevent bacteria from 

Blackberries are one of the richest sources of anti-oxidants.

 

2. Deep colored berries like blueberries, black berries and raspberries are full of healthy micro-nutrients that fight inflammation and attack cancer-type cells in your body. The berries can be rinsed and eaten by the handful. Better yet, enjoy a bowl of cooked steel-cut oats with a few berries thrown in. For dessert or snack, warm up the Quesadilla maker and 2 tortillas. Place a tortilla on the press, put a couple of berries in each section, cover with 2nd tortilla, and close lid to cook. Sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon. 

picture of vegetables

Having fruit and vegetables readily available for snacks is healthy and saves money.

3. A variety of colorful root  vegetables like sweet potatoes, carrots, beets and onions are cut in large chunks of equal size. Coat with a small amount of olive, sesame or peanut oil. Sprinkle with a little seasoning, place in a shallow baking sheet and cook (roast) until tender; about one hour. Root veggies and onions are a good source of vitamins and minerals while olive and nut oils are rich in good fatty acids when eaten in moderationl. 

 

 

 

Pre-schoolers made stuffed baked apples

4. kids can cut a hole to remove the apple core and fill  it with instant oats and brown sugar. Place apples on a shallow baking pan, add a cup of water to keep apples moist. Bake for about an hour to so. .Apples are rich in fiber while whole rolled oats are a natural grain.

 

 

Stuffed peppers are easily cooked in your slow cooker

We usually have extra cooked brown rice, salsa, cooked beans, mushrooms, and garlic on hand. A simple meal is made from whole bell peppers. Cut the top off the peppers and fill each cavity with a mixture of moist rice together with the other ingredients. Place a half cup of water in a large slow cooker. Squeeze up to 6 peppers in the slow cooker (1 layer) Cook on high for 2-3 hours until softened

When the above ingredients are added to meals you are offering food that are high in nutrient value and low in calories.  Next week we will include recipes for these ingredients. They can be cooked quickly and in large batches for homeless shelters and camps. stay tuned’

For more about using whole foods in your healthy meal plan read “The End Of Dieting” by Joel Fuhrman MD These foods are from his G-BOMB  list. 

Planning A Cook-In: The 5 X 3 Way

picture of pork meal.

Pulled and diced chicken with rice and veggies are three key ingredients for many 5 X 3 meals. ‘K-Bobs and Stuffed pepper are pictured here.

by donR  October 14, 2016

Choosing meals for a Cook-In is made easier by creating a 5 X 3 chart. It is just a list of featured ingredients which you cook and package to use as a base for three future meals.  A well-stocked pantry provides additional ingredients to complement the featured items 

Previously, we described how pork loin roasts can be cooked  and packaged for use in many different ways. Chicken and turkey, are featured in this article. Read more about these and other versatile ingredients to  use when planning 5 X 3 Cook-Ins. Continue reading

5 X 3 $10 Meals Part 2; Using Pork, Biscuit Mix, & Beet Greens

The biscuits on pot pies can be made with a master biscuit mix

The biscuits on pot pies can be made with a master biscuit mix. see video

by donR   September 12, 2016

“5 X 3 meals” means that your family can have a Cook-In to prepare 5 different foods for use in 3 dinners. You could easily assemble more but for now let’s keep it simple and use the time to play with the kids.

Our last post used pork loin roasts for several entrees. But this saves little time because you still need to prepare future meals separately. Instead, how about cooking 5 ingredients on one day with family or friends and use those for 3 or more future meals? Here is one example to give you an idea for a Cook-In.

  • Roast the pork and place in convenient packages for your first ingredient.
  • Combine 10C flour, oil, baking powder and soda, plus salt to make a biscuit master mix. You can make the biscuits ahead of time or bake them later as for pork sliders, pot pie, fruit tarts or strawberry shortcake.
  • Roasted beets can be eaten as-is or in salads. See Epicurious recipe.

    Roasted beets can be eaten as-is or in salads. See Epicurious recipe.

    Harvest 4 lbs beets with beet greens. Wash and cut greens from red beets. Cut beets, potatoes, onions and other veggies to be ready for roasting in oil and garlic butter.

  • Cook 2 lbs penne whole wheat noodles in boiling water until al dente. Rinse and divide for use in two meals: IE; 1. Penne salad with chopped celery, nuts, tomatoes and dressing. Chill before serving. 2; Penne Lasagna: Layer noodles with low fat cottage cheese, beet greens, tomato sauce, and pulled pork. Sprinkle with Parmesan and bake or freeze for later meals.
  • Wash chop, slice and dice the beet greens and your favorite veggies and leafy greens. Place a damp paper towel on the bottom of several plastic or glass containers. Fill each container with salad greens, cover and refrigerate for up  to 5 days. Add nuts, seeds, pickled beets, cheese or diced pork and dressing just before serving.

Note: If your family follows the “Choose My Plate ” recommendations, simply add dairy, water  and fruit for a balanced meal.  Once your family gets accustomed to planning and cooking together they will look forward to these memorable gatherings.

 

 

 

$10 Meal for a Family of Six: Healthy, Tasty, and Simply Prepared

 

Your family of 6 can feast on five or more meals using food gathered from Our $50 spree Winco

Your family of 6 can feast on five or more meals using food gathered from Our $50 spree @ WinCo.

by donR  May 18th, 2016

The Family Meals Project originally shared ideas with health-conscious families to plan, prepare and share budget-friendly meals. The goal was to assemble family meals for less than $10 using whole foods in the menu plan. That was four years ago and it’s now time to revisit the idea of preparing a $10 meal*. Yes, it’s still very possible to keep healthy meal costs under $10. To prove it, we spent $50 at WinCo and assembled 5 family meals using these ingredients plus a few planned-overs and pantry staples.

Continue reading

Assemble a Family Dinner For Under $10? Yes. And Here Are 5 Suggestions To Make It Healthier

Winter squash is easy to prepare and a good source of vitamins A and K

Winter squash is budget-friendly in season, easy to prepare and a good source of vitamins A and K

by donR May 5, 2016

Cooking wholesome meals on a limited budget can be challenging.  By “wholesome” we mean the meal satisfies the nutritional needs of family members. The $10 meal price is calculated by keeping  the cost of the main ingredients under $8 and simply add $2 for the pantry items like flour, condiments, planned-overs, and spices.

So, if at the end of the month, you have spent, on average, $10 per main meal and have eaten a rainbow of whole foods, you deserve a “Gold Star” and are welcome to share your ideas with the rest of our audience! Continue reading

The Family Cook-In Part 3: Food.

Freshly steamed veggies and chilled fruit are favorites with most children.

Freshly steamed veggies and chilled fruit are children favorites.

by donR February 29, 2016

Okay, you’ve set goals and the agenda for your “Family Cook-In, aka Family Meal Series.” Now it’s decision time as you plan the food menu, a fun game, and age-appropriate conversation starters. Let’s start with a simple food menu and save games and conversation for another day. Choosing the right food for a Cook-In can be difficult but here are a few tips to make meal planing easier. Continue reading

Another $10 Meal: Soba Noodles-the Other Pasta

Fresh Soba noodles are mede from buckwheat; thick, nutty, and comforting.

Fresh Soba noodles are made from buckwheat; thick, nutty, and comforting.

Pasta is a popular choice for Springtime meals; light, spicy, easy to prepare and nutritious if you choose healthier ingredients. We described how to prepare Perfect Pasta in our basic cooking series and today I had a craving for a pasta dinner.  But, to take advantage of the “Hot Sheet Sale” at Cash & Carry, I purchased a 5# bag of fresh Yakisoba noodles ($3.24) along with a 5# bag of shredded cabbage ($2.98), 25# zucchini squash ($14.49) and 14# pk of pork shoulder cushions ($1.15 per pound).

I know…$36.81 is more than the “$10 Meal” in the title but let me share a few of the many meals that can be prepared with these ingredients…see the rest of the story. Continue reading

Easy One Skillet Meal from Planned-Overs

A tasty and healthy meal from planned--overs and food from the pantry

A tasty and healthy meal from planned–overs and food from the pantry

by donR  5/1/20l5

Serve soft or hard tacos one night then create  this simple, nutritious, one skillet meal on the second day. Cook once for several meals to save time, energy and avoid a trip to the grocer.

Nutritious?  This meal was made with whole foods except the dab of whipped cream and Better Than Bouillon® flavoring. Read More….

Continue reading

$10 Meal Challenge #5: Which is best, slow-cooker, wok, oven, grill or pot?

Yo can use ground sausage or Polish sausage links in this lentil stew.

You can use ground sausage or Polish sausage links in this lentil stew.

Before moving on to other topics this month, I’d like to share some ideas about the best appliance to cook budget-friendly meals. The best answer would be “it depends.” The Asian community would certainly prefer a wok because it is so versatile. Others would choose a frying pan over gas heat or casserole dish in an oven.  My preference would be to use the slow cooker, which is not commonly used in many parts of the world. So why would I want to use it? I like soup and  casseroles and these can be cooked easily in a slow cooker. I can set it and forget it. But there’s more to it than that. Continue reading

$10 Meal Challenge: Stuffed Pork Loin

by DonR  10 23 14

Stiffed pork loin is a budget friendly alternative to beef and its so easy to cook.

Stuffed pork loin is a budget friendly alternative to beef and it’s so easy to cook.(iclipart illustration of stuffed pork chop)

Pork loin, when purchased from a restaurant supplier, is one of the better food values if you are a flexitarian. We purchased a 7 pound package for two dollars a pound on sale. One thick 9 ounce slice was more than enough for the two of us because it was stuffed with apple dressing. By adding coleslaw, whole grain bread and vegetables, we came close to My Plate  recommendations and under the $10.00 challenge limit. Continue reading