Recently, I was challenged by my friend Brooke Wagner of Denver’s KDVR Fox 31 and Good Day Colorado, to come up with a meal that could be made for under $5. Well luckily, thrifty is my middle name! This is one of my family’s favorite dinners and it’s also one of the most effortless to make. Because if I have to put in a lot of work to make dinner or clean it up, I’d rather just spend the money and get take-out!
It all comes together in just a couple minutes, and cooks in one pan to save cleanup time, too. And it’s really versatile. Use your favorite Teriyaki or stir-fry sauce (we really like the Mongolian sauce by San-J, and it’s all natural!), customize the veggies and protein to your family’s liking, and add some chili sauce if you like a little heat.
What makes this a $5 dinner? Peanut butter and dry pasta are common pantry staples. Most of us will only have to purchase a small bottle of stir fry sauce (which can be used for several more meals) and a few fresh veggies to make this easy, fast, and thrifty dinner. Buy what’s in season, on sale, or use what you might have growing in your garden! Add some leftover meat such as chicken or shrimp and stretch your dollars even further.