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Old 07-31-2013, 01:43 AM   #50
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Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 50
Re: Help! Meals for big families...

Originally Posted by qsefthuko View Post
We eat a lot of soups, stews, and casseroles. These meals are ones in which I can make meat last longer without any noticeable difference.

Potato soup is filling and fairly cheap, and goes a long way. A gallon of milk, some chicken stock (to stretch it out, you can use more stock and less milk if you'd like), a bag of potatoes, a stick of butter, 1/2 cup of flour, 16oz of cheddar cheese, some spices (salt, pepper, cayenne, garlic) and a bit of bacon (optional). You can add carrots and celery as well to stretch it further. It makes a decent sized amount, is yummy and filling. Pair it with some bread and a salad and you've got a great meal that isn't very expensive. Fed 3 adults, 3 kids, had some myself for lunch twice and still have a tiny bit leftover.

Spaghetti with sauce is also pretty cheap. You don't have to add individual meatballs, just mix in a bit of ground beef into the sauce and pour a bit of sauce over everyone's noodles. You can often find pasta boxes on sale for $1 or less, it doesn't have to be actual spaghetti pasta. I get whatever's on sale. Red sauce is pretty cheap as well, or you can make your own fairly easy. Pair it with some bread and a salad as well to stretch it out.

French toast casserole is easy, cheap and also makes a good amount. Loaves of french bread (you can use day old bread that stores usually have marked down), milk, eggs, a bit of vanilla, some sugar and cinnamon. I just made some the other day and we still have leftovers! I used 2 loaves, 8 eggs, 2 cups of milk, 1/2 cup of heavy cream (you can leave it out if you'd like), 3/4 cups of sugar, and 2 tbs of vanilla. For the topping: 1/2 cup all-purpose four, 1/2 cup of firmly packed brown sugar, 1 tsp of cinnamon, 1/4 tsp of salt, 1 stick of cold butter and you can add fruits/nuts if you'd like. Not too bad budget-wise and it's very yummy! I fed 3 adults and 3 kids, and still have some leftovers!

My kids and DH are picky so it's oftentimes hard for me to find recipes to help stretch my budget, but there are certainly some out there. And this mama definitely makes sure to eat, I'm pregnant and get very unpleasant to be around with if I'm starving. Food is cooked all at once, plates are served all at the same time, passed out once all are served up, and everyone sits down to eat at the same time. I used to do the "DH first, then each kid.." thing, but it took forever and by the time I was done with everyone else I was too tired to fix myself a plate and ended up hungry later on. I can't be doing that since I'm pregnant, baby needs to be fed as well
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