Cheap Eats Illustration

Cheap Eats

By Rikki Yanez
Assistant Blog Content Contributor

College seems like it’s all fun and games until you find yourself wondering what meal you’re going to make with a box of rice, ramen soups, cereal, or eggs and the answer is nothing! People always say in order to save money on food you need to buy groceries. However, groceries can be expensive if you’re buying actual ingredients to make meals, instead of microwavable items. All the times I’ve found myself running low on money I always reverted to cheap quick and easy food to make or buy at little cost.

Grocery Shopping

Pasta Noodles and sauce
Pasta is a very affordable meal to buy if you are on a budget and can last you up to a week. Photo by Rikki Yanez.

Nobody ever talks about how much money is spent when you’re shopping for groceries. On average I spend around 50 to 60 dollars buying food that I can make into meals, including the small ingredients for it. It might not seem like a lot of money, however being college student that works part time job where you are making minimum wage it really does affect you financially. So for those that have felt that struggle here are some grocery items that you can buy and use for multiple meals. Pasta is always a good buy since a whole box of noodles can last you a week. The noodles and sauce usually run for about two dollars, which is a great deal considering you can buy two different sauces and make two different pastas with it. You can also buy chicken and broccoli and use that for your pasta or turn it into a meal of its own. With the package of chicken you can also make chicken sandwiches as another meal. You can roughly spend no more than 25 dollars on the broccoli, chicken, pasta noodles and sauces.

Dining Out

We all have those friends that enjoy eating out, so a solution to saving money on a budget is to go to places that have deals. When it comes to dining out I tend to go to places that can get me meals at an affordable price. My latest inexpensive go to food is Taco Bell! I find myself buying a couple of dollar burritos and a drink when I go there, because saving money when your struggling is always a good feeling. Then my next cheap options are the two dollar tacos or the five dollar burritos from Taco Cabana. Many fast food places have deals or inexpensive single food items, so there are times when I’ll already have drinks or chips back at my apartment and I’ll stop at Mcdonalds and get a two dollar chicken sandwich. I do try to not eat a lot of fast food due to it being a really unhealthy lifestyle, however it does help when you don’t have enough money. There are also somewhat of a healthier option for those that are going out such as Subway, which you can buy a six inch for only six dollars.

When you go out to buy groceries just remember that there is a shelf life to fresh food so keep that in mind if you’re on a budget. Make sure you are getting your money’s worth when shopping either for groceries or if you are dining out.The next time you are feeling the struggle keep in mind some of these tips I have shared. College is a time to learn new things and cooking can be one of them or finding the cheapest food deals.

Featured image by Rikki Yanez.

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