The best cost-effective & cheap meals for students

cost-effective meals

Eating delicious food is fantastic. However, if you’re a student and want to save some money, learning some cost-effective meals for students may be one of the best things for you. 

Keep reading to check our recipe selection for an on-budget meals plan for students. And don’t worry, you can still eat delicious food and spare some cash!

Moroccan Couscous:

Created by the indigenous people from Morocco, couscous is something that can’t be missing in many people’s homes. It is also eaten a lot in countries like Brazil, especially in the northeast region. 

Since pre-cooked cornflower, water, manioc starch, and salt are all you’ll need, couscous is a cost-effective meal and an excellent option for students looking to spare some money and experiment with foods from other cultures.

To prepare it, follow these steps: 

  • Mix 1 tablespoon of manioc starch with the 250g of cornflour and salt, preferably in a pot;
  • Gradually add ¾ cup water and mix it (keep doing this process until the couscous acquires a crumbly texture). 
  • After that, let it in the open for around 10 minutes.
  • Use a steam pan to prepare the couscous for approximately 10-15 minutes.

Extra tips: be aware of the amount of water, too much and your couscous won’t cook properly. You can also cook the couscous without manioc starch if you prefer. In addition, be careful not to press the cornflour too much on the pan. Otherwise, it won’t cook properly.

Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup:

Grilled cheese and tomato soup is another good option for students on a tight budget. 

The cheap, cost-effective ingredients of this meal make it a perfect one for a small price. The only thing that can be considered a drawback in this meal is that it can take 30-60 minutes to cook — all in all, a good try!

To prepare this meal:

  • Chop an onion into small pieces.
  • Then, take a slice of butter and melt it.
  • Join the onion and the melted butter on the same recipient and cook them on medium heat. Five minutes should be enough.
  • After that, add crushed tomatoes to the mixture, and cook it on high heat until it’s bubbling. Once it’s bubbling, reduce the heat to a medium level and let it cook for about 40 minutes.

While the cooking is taking place, make some grilled cheese sandwiches. The steps are simple: 

  • Take two slices of bread (or more, depending on how many sandwiches you want to make);
  • Then, butter one side and add cheese in the middle. 
  • Cook each half on medium heat. The amount of sandwiches is up to you. 

Now, enjoy your meal!

Sticky Rice, Vegetables, and Soy Sauce:

Simplicity is what defines this meal. And together with it, we also have a cost-effective, tasteful, and nutritious dish, which is an excellent option for students looking for healthy and cheap options.

Just take as many cups of rice as you want and frozen vegetables in order to start preparing your food. Then, cook them both separately, following the instructions on their respective packages. 

After that, add some soy sauce and the cooked vegetables to the cooked rice and mix it all. Then, all that is left is to enjoy.

We recommend one pack of frozen vegetables and three tablespoons of soy sauce for three cups of rice.

Tuna and Avocado Pasta with breadcrumbs

Another easy-to-prepare and tasteful option for students looking for cost-effective meals is tuna and avocado pasta with golden breadcrumbs.

The steps are: 

  • First of all, prepare the pasta following the package instructions; 
  • Next, use olive oil to prepare a mixture of breadcrumbs, garlic, thyme, and parsley. The mix will be ready when its color is gold-like;
  • After cooking the pasta, drain it, preserve approximately ¼ of the used cooking water. Do the same for the tuna and save the same amount of oil;
  • Once you do this, blend capers, avocado, lemon juice, and the reserved cooking water into the pasta;
  • You can use pepper and salt to season your meal;
  • After that, add the breadcrumbs as a final touch; 

Finish it with some lemon zest and thyme leaves. Let your taste be the judge on the amount to add. And, it’s all done!

Sticky Sausage:

Using sausages is a great option for cost-effective meals since they are cheap and easily available. To prepare your sticky sausage, follow these guidelines:

  • Take 1 crushed garlic clove, 2 tbsp of wholegrain mustard, 3 tbsp of soy sauce, and 1/2 cup of ginger marmalade. Put it all together with 1 kg of sausage in a baking dish;
  • Then, for approximately 45 minutes, bake at 180 ºC;
  • Complement the dish with vegetables you like, and you are all set!

Bottom line:

Having cost-effective meals is usually of great help for a student since that’s a financially difficult phase for anyone, but as you can see, you can get the job done with some good tips!

If you enjoyed our best cost-effective meals’ suggestions, be sure to share it with your friends looking to stay within budget and enjoy something warm and filling at the same time.

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