Top 5 Cheapest Foods for Meals

Only got car change? Don't want another McChicken?

Almost all of us have been backed in a corner before when it comes to buying a meal. Many people around the US don't even eat 3 meals a day because they are in debt, waiting for payday, have a large family, or maybe college students living on a tight budget. Well here is some of the cheapest foods you can actual make a meal out of to get by until the next meal. While cheaper options do exist - most aren't viable because of what else you need to prepare them. Now keep in mind, this list is for "meals" not just a single item you can eat. There are many foods that are cheap but they wouldn't make someone "happy" as a meal, they would more likely serve as a snack. Putting snacks aside, these are the big 5 I consider to be the cheapest possible options.

Ramen Noodles / Instant Lunch
Ramen Noodles / Instant Lunch

Ramen Noodles / Instant Lunch

This is the king of the college students. The cheapest meal you can possibly get and feel like its a meal in a cup is Ramen Noodles. These come normally for as low as 25 cents a cup at Shaw's and other grocery stores. They average about 75 cents each when not on sale. Just add hot water and your all set! Nothing can be cheaper in todays world.

Banquet Frozen Dinners
Banquet Frozen Dinners

Banquet Frozen Dinners

Banquet Frozen Dinners are an often frequented meal by many. They come between $1-1.50 and normally contain some better foods with slightly more nutritional value then just the Instant Lunches. These are better then they look and normally leave people satisfied because of the meat in them...there is no substitute for getting some good old meat with every meal!

Hot Dogs!
Hot Dogs!

Hot Dogs!

Hot Dogs are a favorite of kids and adults alike everywhere. These little treats of meat come normally in 6-10 packs for as cheap as $0.88 a PACKAGE! You can't buy meat that cheap any other way and be as satisfied. There are many ways of cooking hot dogs that keep them entertaining to eat. Such as grilling, boiling, and steaming. People in a rush can also microwave them. The reason why these don't beat out the Banquet Frozen Dinners is normally people don't eat hot dogs without bread. Bread can still be found at $1 or less for more then enough for a package of hot dogs, giving you 5-7 servings of the combo for only $2. This is more filling then the Banquet Meal but worse for you overall.

Lettuce!
Lettuce!

Quick Salad

For those of us that want to not gain a ton of weight and don't want to ingest 800mg + of sodium in one meal, a salad can be thrown together from a head of lettuce. The head of lettuce is only around 69 cents on average and small single servings of dressing come as cheap as 25 cents a package. At that price, you could also get a carrot and make the salad a bit fancy.

Mac n Cheese - Yes, putting it in a clear dish will make it look better then it actually is =)
Mac n Cheese - Yes, putting it in a clear dish will make it look better then it actually is =)

Mac n Cheese / Pasta

The most savory and most complete to make on this list is good old Mac n Cheese. Pasta is also under this category. Both Pasta and Boxes of Mac n Cheese can be found for 25 cents to 88 cents normally. The issue with this and why its the most expensive is because you normally need sauce for pasta or milk+butter for Mac n Cheese. While in the end this is a very very cheap option for how much food you get out of it, it does come with those stipulation. If your really hungry Pasta is the way to go, as you can eat your fill for around $2-3.50 total depending on the sauce.

Well thats my quickly thrown together list on the cheapest 5 foods I go to when I can't stomach another fast food sandwich. While there are other options that aren't on this list, such as Grilled Cheese Sandwiches and Hot Pockets - these are just my go to food when I have less then $3 and need some eats. Please if you enjoyed or liked this Hub at all share it with the world, and maybe I will be able to eat something else other then whats on this list!

Thanks for reading!

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Comments 2 comments

peachpurple profile image

peachpurple 21 months ago from Home Sweet Home

Wow, these food are making me hungry, great for singles n students although not healthy, save cost


Nell Rose profile image

Nell Rose 21 months ago from England

I tend to snack on these since my son left home, I am such a lazy cook its easier to eat these quick fast foods! lol!

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