Dinners Are Served: Ten Meals for Less than $50

For all the nights you’ve stood at the fridge thinking What’s for dinner? For the times a trip to the grocery store has all but emptied your bank account. And for all the moments you’ve given up altogether and reached for the takeout menu instead—The Everygirl has your answer.

Here we present five tried and true recipes—quick, satisfying meals that combined, cost less than $50. No matter your level of cooking skill, these versatile and hearty dishes are easy to master and offer up leftovers or a dinner for two. They’re fast, filling and fit for cooking after a long day at work or school. So next week, let your takeout menus collect some dust and give your wallet a rest while you commit to a little time in the kitchen. Head out just once with our shopping list this weekend and stock up on everything you’ll need for your week of simple and delicious eating. Bon Appetit!

Monday

Chicken Lettuce Wraps & Peanut Sesame Noodles

Chicken Ingredients:
1 head iceberg or bib lettuce
1 boneless skinless chicken breast cut into small pieces
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1/2 red pepper, chopped
1 large carrot, peeled and shredded
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
½ tablespoon vegetable oil

Directions:
Carefully break off 8 lettuce leaves, leaving them whole. Set aside. Season chicken pieces with salt and pepper. Heat vegetable oil in saucepan over medium high heat and add in chicken pieces. After about 5 minutes, add in chopped red pepper and carrot and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes until chicken is cooked through. Reduce heat to low and add in soy sauce, sesame oil, and rice wine vinegar. Stir to coat chicken and vegetables. Pile chicken mixture into lettuce cups (about ¼ cup in each lettuce cup) and serve.

Noodle Ingredients:
½ lb. Spaghetti
2 tablespoons smooth peanut butter
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons sesame oil
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Scallions and/or sesame seeds for garnish

Directions:
Cook spaghetti according to directions on box. While spaghetti cooks, add peanut butter, soy sauce, sesame oil, rice wine vinegar, garlic, sugar, and pepper flakes to a saucepan over medium heat. Whisk until everything is combined and peanut sauce begins to simmer. Remove from heat. Drain pasta and return to pot. Pour peanut sauce over noodles and use tongs to coat spaghetti. Serve in a large bowl with chopped green onions or sesame seeds as a garnish.

This recipe is available in The Handbook to be downloaded and printed.

Danielle Moss
Alaina Kaczmarski
Elizabeth Duszynski
Lara Matos

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