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Pasta and sauce (but no hamburger?!)

Pasta is budget food that will feed our family.

Tonight we had a simple meal of pasta, sauce, topped with cheese and served with peas.

No hamburger?  Not tonight, anyway.  We like a ronzoni pasta with 6g of protein per serving–the peas also have 5g of protein.  Add in cheese and a cup of milk and I think it gives our family enough protein, especially if we have had meat at another meal.   The budget?  How about……

$1.45 for the extra fiber pasta

$1.25 for the kroger sauce

$2 for two bags of tasty frozen peas I bought on sale

$1 for a 1/2 bag of shredded cheese

That’s less than $6!!  Even if we have hamburger, that only adds another $2.50 to $3.00.  That makes this a budget meal for our family.

I think you know how to cook this, but just in case, I will share our simple method.  I cook up the pasta in a big pot, drain when cooked, and toss into a super handy glass casserole dish.  It’s round, which means it can easily go into the microwave to quickly melt the cheese or to reheat leftovers.  I heat the sauce, pour on top and then sprinkle a generous amount of cheese.  Our favorite is monterey jack.  I put on the lid, and into the microwave it goes–just long enough to melt the cheese.

A word about pasta and sauce:

I’m not super crazy about those “added omega 3” products.  Flaxseed can go bad really fast–I think I will pass.  We do eat whole wheat pasta on occasion, but generally I have come to prefer a lovely variety by Ronzoni.  It’s white pasta with added wheat fiber and calcium.  It tastes great AND it has fiber.  This makes the grade for my family.  AND now about sauce.  I read labels.  Vigilantly.  We try to buy the one with the lowest amount of sugars (that we can afford and that the kids will eat).  The $3.00 Classico or Bertolli brands both make sauce varieties that are low in sugars.  If you can spring for it, that’s what I recommend.  Do you really want your family eating pasta, tomatoes and loads of corn syrup?  However, in tighter budget times, I just go for the Kroger variety the lowest in sugars.  Honestly, that’s the one the kids like the best even though I like those pricy ones….

Pasta and tomato sauce is one of the most basic family meals.  Thank you, Italy!

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About onlifeandbeans

I like to make the adventure taste good by cooking tasty, wholesome food. Most of what I've learned in cooking, I've picked up from cookbooks and lots of practice. (Thank you, Fannie Farmer, for the right start. ) I so appreciate cookbooks that tell how and why to do something; that's why I do the same for my readers. I want to know what is in my food. I want my family to sit down and share a meal together. I want our food to taste good. Home-cooking takes time, but it gives back rich dividends in budget minding, good health and familial love. One meal at a time.

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