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Welcome to $2 Dinners

Feeding your family on a budget has always been a challenge, but in today's economy, it's more difficult than ever before. So what's a busy cook on a budget to do? Is it possible to stay on a budget and still serve flavorful meals that are quick and easy too? Trust me; with some budget-friendly recipes and time-saving strategies, you can do it!

Helping you save time and money is what $2 Dinners is all about. Each article is chock-full of ideas you can use today, and each recipe is designed to cost $2 or less per serving to make. With our thrifty and delicious recipes, some great tips, and a little planning, you will be well on your way towards making quick and flavorful meals without busting your budget. Are you ready? Let's get started!

About Our Cost Estimates

Per servings costs are based on regular store prices the day ingredients were purchased, and/or were estimated based on the USDA Food Prices Database .

Estimates also assume that certain pantry items such as basic spices, oil, vinegar, etc., did not have to be purchased to prepare the recipe. Coupons and store sales were not used. Your costs may vary.

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Wow your friends and family with this stress-free holiday dinner

For most of us, the holiday season means gathering in our homes with friends and family to enjoy company, conversation, and great food. If you’re planning a holiday gathering at your house, you may be looking forward to it with equal amounts of excitement and fear. I don’t blame you! It’s never a small feat to hold a gathering that involves food, and even small dinner parties can make your palms sweaty; the holidays only add an extra layer of stress! You’re not alone though, because even veteran hosts/hostesses can find it a balancing act to put together a great meal without spending all their time in the kitchen (and neglecting their guests).

The good news is that a holiday dinner party doesn’t have to be stressful, and you can pull it off easily and within budget. How? The secret is to plan ahead and to have an easy but delicious menu. The menu for our $2 Dinners “Stress-Free Holiday Dinner” is full of recipes that are delicious, super-easy and guaranteed to “wow” your guests! The best part is that each one has six ingredients or less (not counting salt and pepper)! For your upcoming holiday meal, try “Heavenly Christmas Ham”, “Scalloped Potatoes”, and “Bacon-y Green Beans”. With rolls and dessert purchased at your local bakery, you will have a delicious, stress-free holiday feast you can be proud of!

$2 Dinners Hints for a Stress-Free Holiday Meal:

- Read and re-read the recipes to make sure you understand the steps and to double-check that you have all the ingredients. Make a grocery list and do your shopping a day or two in advance.
- Set and decorate your table the morning of your party. Set out all your serving bowls and utensils as well. Guests who arrive early will most likely offer to help, so put a piece of paper with the name of the food it will contain beside (or inside) each serving dish. That way, your helpers will know where things go and you won’t be interrupted every 5 minutes to give them instructions.
- To avoid washing all those dishes, consider using paper plates. There are some really gorgeous patterns available and paper makes things so much easier. I love using my great-grandmother’s china, but since it has to be carefully hand-washed, I usually choose paper instead. While I still use my good flatware for the main meal, I do use plastic ware for appetizers and desserts (otherwise I would run out of forks!). I also purchase paper or plastic cups in a coordinating color or pattern for guests to use before and after the meal.

Click on the orange boxes for a printable version of the recipes

Heavenly Citrus Ham (makes 15 servings @ about $2.00 per serving)

Really Easy Scalloped Potatoes (makes 6-8 servings @ about .75 cents per serving)

Bacon-y Green Beans (makes 6 servings @ about .35 cents per serving)

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Tv Food and Drink said...

Great tips, and you can't ever go wrong with scalloped potatoes, but that is a super easy recipe. I am thankful that I didn't have to host anything this year, but I know what site to come to next time I do!

Konrad said...

Now Im hungry at work! Ill have to go home and try some of those!

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