So this morning I woke up to my wife having made the last of the eggs and a pot of coffee, which I had with liberal dollups of natural wildflower honey. I had gotten to the point before where I was drinking an entire pot of coffee every morning, with milk and sugar and not a little of either, but these days I rarely have coffee and when I do it’s only with honey. It’s more of a treat now than a staple.
For lunch I had a LÄRABAR® . I’m still waiting to get my first paychecks at my new job and as I posted earlier, the food court isn’t exactly “paleo friendly.” So I’ve been taking these to work with me to eat while I’m “on the job.” But here’s the thing, nuts and fruit, almost nothing else, about 200 calories on average, and they get me through an entire nine hour day. Now, full disclosure, I’m not chopping down trees in the adirondacks. I’m standing in a kiosk in a mall. Mostly I’m leaning. My caloric requirements are probably pretty low. But these things get me through the whole day, and I’m not hungry at all.
Before I left for work this morning, I made some soup in the crockpot. I set it to low and let it cook all day so that when I got home it would be ready to eat. This is super easy, and cheap, and it makes a ton of food.
Southern Style Chicken Soup
1 can Swanson Beef Broth
3 cups Swanson Veg Broth
1 can diced tomatoes in olive oil with garlic
1 can french style green beans
1.5 tablespoons butter
8 oz. rotisserie chicken breast
1 cup diced bell pepper
1 cup diced red onion
1 sliced jalapeno
1 slice raw bacon
2 cups of sliced fingerling potatoes
I put all this in the crockpot, with a slow cooker liner, which you always want to use when you crockpot. Makes it a thousand times easier. Times a thousand. According to myfitnesspal, this is roughly 1325 calories for the whole pot. I love soups like this. You can eat a huge amount, it tastes fantastic, you get all the nutrients from the meat and veg and a little fat and there’s always plenty of leftovers for tomorrow.
Again, this simple variation on an easy soup theme makes a great dinner that’s cheap and simple to prepare. Veg, broth, meat. It’s hard to go wrong. Throw it in a pot with some salt and pepper and cayenne and come back eight hours later. Dinner. And lunch tomorrow. And the whole thing probably only cost about 15 bucks. For at least three individual meals, maybe four? I make a lot of these “kinds” of meals. And really enjoy them.
So we made it to payday. Pretty easily. With only fifty bucks, some frozen poultry, and a couple of canned tomatoes we had in the pantry. More or less. And we ate great all day, every day. You can spend a fortune on the fanciest meats and veg, and you’ll definitely get your money’s worth. But “cost” isn’t really a barrier to eating well. In every sense of the word. Cut out the grains and the milk and the sugar. Meat and veg. It’s easy, healthy, delicious. You won’t ever regret it. You won’t ever think it’s a mistake. You can do it.
We did it this week for ten dollars a day. With leftovers.