Frugal Friday: What’s Your Beans and Rice?

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Indulgence. Gluttony. Cornucopia. Abundance.

All wonderful descriptions of many people’s holiday season (including ours). But all that abundance comes at a cost.  I always struggle with the grocery budget around the holidays. There are so many things that conspire against me: all the delectable displays in the grocery store; the expensive ingredients for recipes I only make once a year, and let’s not get started with the busy-ness and stress that makes me a slave to the siren call of convenience foods.

This year I’m trying something different.  Every week, due to various celebrations and holiday get-togethers, I am going to prepare one “beans and rice”-like meal.  It may literally be rice and beans with my homemade taco seasoning, but it could be any meal that is easy to throw together, extremely cheap (lower than $5 per recipe), and moderately healthful.

Somehow, I hope to balance the excesses that we indulge in with a few simple meals to help keep our budget and waistlines in check this season.

Oh, and since we’re on the topic, and even though it barely qualifies as a “recipe,” I’ll share how I make beans and rice.

Beans and Rice

2 cups of  Rice, cooked according to package directions
1-2 Cans Red Kidney Beans (I prefer Eden Organics)
1 28-oz can crushed tomatoes
1 recipe Taco Seasoning

Heat up the tomatoes, taco seasoning, and beans, and pour it over the cooked rice.  

What is your “Beans and Rice” meal? I’d love to hear other suggestions. :)

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  1. One meal I made this week was Taco Soup. It is super simple and a great “beans and rice” meal.

    – 1 can each corn, black beans, diced tomatoes with chilies
    – 2 cans pinto beans or whatever beans you have on hand
    – 1 1/2 cup water (may need a little more)
    – 1 lb ground beef, browned
    – 1 packet taco seasoning
    – 1 packet ranch dressing mix

    I found all of this in my cupboard (meat in the freezer) and was very happy. Mine cost me around $5 to $6 but serves 8 to 10 people.

    • I forgot to say how long to cook it: I just throw it in the crock pot for a few hours on high or simmer it on the stove until the desired consistency. Enjoy! (Serve with chips, cheese, sour cream and/or grilled cheese)

  2. That’s a great idea, Carlye! Thanks for sharing it.

  3. We are vegetarians and have a favorite simple rice and beans dish. I use brown rice, black beans, corn and some veggies thrown in like tomatoes or peppers. After the rice is cooked and I simmer everything together in a pot of vegetable broth on low for a long time to soak up all the flavors!


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