The Cheap Dish
Baked Lemon Chicken with White Rice and Green Beans - $7.17

I have the very best cookbook on planet earth. If you don’t have this, buy one…now! With that out of the way, I searched through the poultry section to discover a tart but crunchy baked lemon chicken recipe and decided to pair it with white rice and green beans.

Ingredients you will need:

  1. 1/2 Cup Bread Crumbs - $2.39
  2. 1 Garlic Clove from the head - $.50
  3. White Rice - $3.49
  4. Green Beans - $.79

Staples in the kitchen:

  1. 2 Chicken Breasts, thawed (Again, I buy a big pack and freeze so I always have a back up plan)
  2. 1 1/2 Tbl. Lemon Juice
  3. 2 Tbl. Butter, melted
  4. Salt & Pepper

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. I hate that lingering garlic smell on my hands long after the clove has been minced, so I made plastic bag gloves (meaning sandwich bags on my hands) and grated the garlic clove over a small plate. This left my hands smelling slightly of garlic for only one day instead of one week. Anyway, I digress.

Next, combine the butter, lemon juice, garlic, and salt and pepper in a shallow dish. In another dish, place bread crumbs and sprinkle with a little more salt and pepper.

Dip chicken in the butter mixture, then coat evenly with crumbs. Place in a greased baking dish and drizzle with remaining butter mixture. The remaining mix should coat the bottom of the pan. Bake uncovered for 30-40 minutes or until juices run clear.

While the chicken bakes, boil rice in a small sauce pan according to package directions and start heating up your green beans 10 minutes before your chicken is ready.

Happy Eating!

Filet Mignon, Baked Potatoes & Green Beans - $10.39

For this recipe you will need:

  1. Filet Mignon (or 8oz. steak of your choice) - $7.79
  2. Baked Potatoes ($.99 per lb.) - $1.81
  3. Green Beans - $.79

The spices you will need to season your steak:

  1. Olive Oil
  2. Salt & Pepper
  3. Granulated Garlic
  4. Onion Powder

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Prepare your potatoes by washing them, stick them with a fork about 6 times all over the potato and place them in the microwave for five minutes. This just helps them cook faster once they are in the oven. Wrap them in tinfoil and place them in the oven. Put timer on for 30 minutes.

Now turn to seasoning your steak. If you’re super prepared (unlike me) you can marinate your steak overnight in the fridge. But, I bought my steak after work so, IĀ  marinated it by rubbing on a little olive oil, garlic and onion powder then placed it in the fridge for 30 minutes.

Once your oven timer goes off turn the potatoes in the oven and put your oven on Hi Broil (I put mine on Lo at first and it took forever for the steak to begin to cook). Because broil is the hottest your oven can go, this will make those potatoes in the oven bake even faster. I like my steak a little pink so, it only took about 10 minutes once I turned my broiler on High and the potatoes were already beginning to soften. Make sure you heat your green beans up on the stove while your steak broils. If you crave something fresh, I also recommend making a crisp garden salad.

Cook your steak to taste (anywhere between 10 - 20 minutes), your potatoes should be done in 45 minutes or less and you can take them out to cool while the steak finishes. In this time you can heat your green beans on the burner and begin plating. Feeds 2 people.

Happy eating! Oh and by the way, there are no leftovers.

Rotisserie Chicken with Mashed Potatoes, Green Beans & Corn on the Cob - $9.42

I love buying a Rotisserie Chicken from the grocery store. They are slow roasted, tender and juicy. Not to mention, you can eat on it all week. But what should you eat with it when you buy it fresh? Here’s my suggestion.

  1. Rotisserie Chicken - $5.49
  2. 1 Can of Green Beans - $.79
  3. 2 Ears of Corn - $1.38
  4. 2 Russet Potatoes - $1.76

You will also need to head to your spice rack and fridge for this meal. Grab:

  1. Granulated Garlic
  2. Salt & Pepper (Always)
  3. Milk
  4. Butter
  5. Sugar/Splenda

One of the biggest tricks of cooking is to time everything just right so you can eat everything at the same time. This has been one of the biggest challenges for me, and after three years I still have to plan everything in my head before I even begin cooking.

The best way is to get out all of your ingredients and then decide what takes the longest to cook. In this case it’s the potatoes. So I took them out of the cabinet (it’s best to keep potatoes in a cool, dark place so they don’t spud as quickly), washed them and peeled them. I think this is one of my least favorite things to do ever. I recently bought a hand peeler from the 99 Cent Store, and I guess you get what you pay for because the peeler only worked mildly better than a knife.

When your potatoes are clean, place them in a saucepan and fill the water until it covers the potatoes. Begin heating on medium-high heat and add in 1 tsp. of granulated garlic with salt and pepper to taste.

While that boils, begin work on the corn. This is my first time boiling corn on my own, so I texted my mother for any extra information she could provide. Being southern, she told me she liked to add 1 tablespoon of sugar to the boiling water - but now that she’s a bit of a health nut she told me to put in one packet of Splenda. It’s your choice, this just sweetens up the corn.

I then turned to undressing the corn. I hold mine far away from me in case any silk worms decide to jump out, but I was lucky and all was clear. Then, place the ears of corn in a dutch oven half filled with water and begin boiling on a medium-low flame with or without sugar - your choice.

Make sure you check your potatoes again. You can do this by sticking a fork in the middle of them. If I’m super hungry, I’ll cut the potatoes in half after they gotten soft enough in the center to do so. This just boils them faster. After you’ve checked your potatoes, pour your can of green beans into a shallow dish and heat over a very low flame. This is the time when everything starts to come together.

Check your corn. Grab a colander and drain the potatoes (when they’re soft enough) and put back them back in the sauce pan. Add 2 tablespoons butter and 1/4 cup milk. This is open to interpretation. I usually just eye it instead of measuring the ingredients out.

Now comes the fun part. I’ve tried using a hand masher, but it just doesn’t do the job the way an electric mixer does. I’m not a fan of lumpy, mushy potatoes. I like them whipped and smooth. After this is done you can begin plating.

3 large scoops of potatoes, 2 scoops of green beans with a spoon strainer, 1 ear of corn on the cob and as much chicken as you can stand. Feeds 2 people.

Leftovers? I like to eat the chicken cold with A1 sauce. I also make a yummy chicken salad with mayo, spices and chopped celery.

Happy eating!