17 Budget-Friendly Meals That Don't Involve Pasta

17 Budget-Friendly Meals That Don't Involve Pasta

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Kelli Foster
Jun 23, 2014

When you're cooking on a tight budget it's so easy to fall into a pasta rut. Been there, done that more times than I care to remember. Pasta is a quick, inexpensive, and easy meal with limited clean-up required which makes it pretty enticing, but it also gets boring fast.

Good news, cooking on a budget doesn't have to mean pasta for dinner seven nights a week. From stir-fry to burritos to chili, chicken and fish, here are 17 delicious, budget-friendly dinners that don't involve pasta.

(Image credit: Emma Christensen)

Slow-Cooker Black Bean Enchiladas

Stir-fries are such a great low cost meal, and they're a great way to use up extra veggies and any leftover meat or tofu that's in the fridge. Plus, the leftovers make a great lunch the following day. Also, consider inexpensive meals built around tortillas, beans and rice, like burritos, tacos and enchiladas.

(Image credit: Emma Christensen)

Easy Turkey Chili with Kale

Soup, Chili, & Stew

No matter the season, soup and chili are always favorites. Both are comforting, easily adaptable to swap in seasonal ingredients, they make great leftovers and they're easy on your wallet. Want to make your soup, stew or chili a little heartier? Add quinoa or freekeh for some extra protein.

(Image credit: Karen Biton-Cohen)

Green Shakshuka

Chicken Thighs

Chicken thighs are always a great choice of meat, and in my opinion they're totally underrated. Whether you like skin-on or you prefer, boneless and skinless, chicken thighs are inexpensive, easy to cook and the meat is so tender and full of flavor.

(Image credit: Nealey Dozier)

Summer Farro Salad with Tomatoes, Cucumbers & Basil

More Ideas: Fish, Grains, & Lentils


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