Budget Meal: Zucchini and Sweet Potato Frittata

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Servings: 4
Cost per serving: $1.69
Cost per meal: $6.75
Prep time: 45 minutes
Estimated calories per serving: 225

For this week’s budget meal I decided to go vegetarian and low carb with a zucchini and sweet potato frittata. (Bonus: It’s also Paleo-friendly!)  A frittata is kind of like an omelet, only it’s fluffier and filled with more vegetables and such. It’s cooked in a unique way—you start it on the stove, and then you finish it in the oven. Sure, maybe it sounds like a breakfast food, but if you’re like me, then you probably don’t get around to making this type of thing for breakfast often. So why not try it for dinner? Continue reading

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How To: Sauté Vegetables

Sautéed vegetables can be a great addition to rice, pasta, wraps, salads, meat dishes or even by themselves! They can also be very healthy and flavorful if you use olive oil as opposed to butter or vegetable oil. This is a simple recipe that only takes a few steps, but be sure to use appropriate kitchen tools! A shallow frying pan works best so there is more surface area for the vegetables to brown, and a wooden spoon or spatula is all you need to turn your sautéed ingredients.

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Budget Meal: Chicken Fajitas

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Servings: 1-3
Cost per meal: $9.75
Cost per serving: $3.25
Prep Time: 10 minutes 
Estimated Calories: 465

These chicken fajitas are one of my go-to meals during the week because I love Mexican food, but I don’t always have the time to go out to eat and can’t always afford fajitas when I do make it out since they seem to be one of the pricier items at most Mexican restaurants. The best part about this recipe is that I threw it together on a whim one night and so it’s easy to add in any other vegetables, other meats, or toppings you like to keep it interesting. This recipe is also great because it’s easy to make a single serving for yourself or make enough for some friends, too.

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How To: Make Your Own Balsamic Vinaigrette

Salad Dressing

Three ingredients, one bottle and you’ve got your own homemade balsamic vinaigrette. This is much healthier than what you’d find in the grocery store and it will dress approximately four salads! Spruce up your lettuce or dip some sliced raw veggies in it. I love sliced apples and carrots with a balsamic drizzle, it’s the epitome of sweet and salty!

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Budget Meal: Shamrock Egg Bake with Turkey Sausage

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Servings: 9
Cost per meal: $9.57
Cost per serving: $1.06
Prep time: 60 minutes
Estimated Calories: 301

Brunch is a fantastic meal for college students, it’s always a social activity and will double as breakfast and lunch! I named this casserole the Shamrock Egg Bake with Turkey Sausage because of it’s green and gold color, and it’s perfect for spring time! Unlike most breakfast casseroles this one does not need to be prepared a day ahead for the bread to absorb the egg. You can also serve this as a “breakfast for dinner” meal and refrigerate the leftovers! I adapted the original recipe from Taste of Home by adding turkey sausage for additional protein to make this a complete meal.

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Budget Meal: Southwestern Chicken Salad

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Servings: 4
Cost per meal: $9.98
Cost per serving: $2.50
Prep time: 20 minutes
Estimated Calories: 385

Salads are a wonderful meal for any night of the week—they’re quick, easy to make, and for those of you who are trying to avoiding eating too many carbs, they’re a great way to up the veggie (and meat, if you like) count in your diet! Salads are pretty underrated, in my humble opinion. Don’t let the long list of ingredients scare you off- It’s more than made up by a super quick and simple preparation process. Here is a recipe for a nutritious and filling southwestern chicken salad, adapted from two different recipes, found at Taste of Home and All Recipes.

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Budget Meal: Pasta with Turkey and Fresh Tomato Sauce

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Servings: 6
Cost per meal: $9.17
Cost per serving: $1.53
Prep time: 30 minutes
Estimated Calories: 400 

This pasta dish is a quick meal for almost any night of the week. It also gives you a lot of food, so the leftovers will last you for awhile! For all of you vegetarians out there- this is a really easy dish to make meatless (see the Martha Stewart recipe where this is adapted from) without losing much of the meal.

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