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Eating well, but cheap

breakfasteatre

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Man, im in a pickle this month
i got into a fender bender and pretty much maxed out my credit card

now, im a bartender, i make plenty of money, but this month it will be just enough to pay rent, utilities, insurance and hopefully most of the car bullshit

now, i just have a little left over to feed myself

im not looking to kill myself and eat raymen noodles everyday, so how can i eat relatively healthy but extremely cheaply?
 

globetrotter

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Originally Posted by breakfasteatre
Man, im in a pickle this month
i got into a fender bender and pretty much maxed out my credit card

now, im a bartender, i make plenty of money, but this month it will be just enough to pay rent, utilities, insurance and hopefully most of the car bullshit

now, i just have a little left over to feed myself

im not looking to kill myself and eat raymen noodles everyday, so how can i eat relatively healthy but extremely cheaply?



tuna and wonder bread
 

Violinist

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exactly how broke will you be this month?
 

swisloc

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if you are in city with a large asain population, eat "bahn mi" vietnamese sandwiches... here in nyc they are about 3 bucks apiece and are an EXCELLENT meal. I've seen them for less in other cities. basically it's a french baguette with various types of meat, cucumber, carrots and fresh cilantro, and mayonaise (and often with pate)... basically a colonial france meets souteast asia concoction.
 

VMan

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Shop at Aldi. You'd be surprised what you can find there on the cheap. I was there yesterday, and got a nice piece of peppered smoked salmon for $2.50. It's good for staples. I tend to avoid the lunch meats, as they are cheaply priced but also cheap quality. I haven't bought raw meat there either. Their produce is inexpensive and passable. You can also get hearty 12 grain bread that really fills you up for $1.50 versus the $3-$4 charged by most grocery and health food stores.

Also, dumpster diving can be fruitful. It works best at small independent grocery stores rather than the giant chains. Don't take meat or perishables. You can usually find some produce that is still plenty good, as well as boxed or canned goods that have had their packages damaged but are still sealed. Go late at night because it is illegal in some places. If you have a place such as Panera, Breadsmith, or Atlanta Bread Company nearby, you can usually take a whole bunch of day-old breads and baked goods from their dumpsters. They will be in sealed plastic bags, too.
 

skalogre

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I have found that often specialised markets (that are not chains), such as small Vietnamese, Chinese, "Middle Eastern"/Mediterrannean food grocery places are a lot more inexpensive for thinmgs like produce, staples, et.c. Edit: Pittes, pasta, multigrain breads like Vman mentioned, tortillas et.c. are your friends.
 

Augustus Medici

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Originally Posted by VMan
Also, dumpster diving can be fruitful. It works best at small independent grocery stores rather than the giant chains. Don't take meat or perishables. You can usually find some produce that is still plenty good, as well as boxed or canned goods that have had their packages damaged but are still sealed. Go late at night because it is illegal in some places. If you have a place such as Panera, Breadsmith, or Atlanta Bread Company nearby, you can usually take a whole bunch of day-old breads and baked goods from their dumpsters. They will be in sealed plastic bags, too.

Dude, are you serious? He's going poor, not homeless.
 

VMan

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Originally Posted by Augustus Medici
Dude, are you serious? He's going poor, not homeless.

I posted this without reading he had a $50/week budget, which seems substantial enough actually.

As far as my post - I'm not talking about scrounging the bottoms of filthy dumpsters and picking out rotted food. If you go right after the store closes, you can find perfectly good items sealed in double-layered bags that are pretty much untouched.

I don't do this myself, but if I was in a situation with absolutely zero money to spend on food, I wouldn't hesitate. It's sick to see how much food goes wasted every day.
 
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that's a great idea. mr. medici, you should rent varda's THE GLEANERS AND I. lots of people do well for themselves in such a way. we waste so much.

anyway, to the OP-----rice is very cost-efficient. put a dollop of tomato sauce and a little cheese and you've got a meal.

eat popcorn followed by water. it will expand in your stomach and you will feel full.

go to salad bars and get only lettuce with a tiny splash of vinegar or oil. i got a 75 cent salad today that was filling.

hard boiled eggs, dude.
 

breakfasteatre

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Heh, i read that and was like wtf? Even if i had zero money, i would go to my parents house and eat there.

Lately ive been eating lunch meat sandwhiches almost exclusively at home. I made a stir fry the other night but it wasnt that cheap,

1 red pepper, snow peas, sprouts, chicken, it was about 20 bucks, and that doesnt include the rice, red onion and seasoning i already had

i guess i should find a cheap market as opposed to the expensive 24hour dominion down the street
 

aybojs

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Do you work at a lounge/club or some place without a food menu? I bartend too, and I take advantage of my bar's employee meal discounts to keep food costs reasonable. The food's not as exciting as I'd prefer, but I can rotate between salads, sandwiches, traditional bar food, etc. to keep some variety. Even if I didn't work at a place that served food, I'm sure I could find some to take advantage of being "industry" if I desperately needed to cut food costs; say maybe by finding a restaurant to pick up shifts at (and thus get employee discounts) or asking co-workers or industry regulars if they had any leads on good places to eat affordably.
 

lawyerdad

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Originally Posted by breakfasteatre
Heh, i read that and was like wtf? Even if i had zero money, i would go to my parents house and eat there.

Lately ive been eating lunch meat sandwhiches almost exclusively at home. I made a stir fry the other night but it wasnt that cheap,

1 red pepper, snow peas, sprouts, chicken, it was about 20 bucks, and that doesnt include the rice, red onion and seasoning i already had

i guess i should find a cheap market as opposed to the expensive 24hour dominion down the street

You can get a bag of frozen veggies that'll be enough for 3-4 stir fries for something like $2 or less. You can even get the pre-cut frozen chicken-and-veggie packages of stir fry or fajitas or whatever for under $5. Throw in some rice - which is ridiculously cheap if you buy in bulk - and you can get several meals out of it.
 

shoreman1782

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i will have about 50 bucks a week for groceries if that
Are you shopping just for yourself? I rarely spend more than $50/week on groceries. Just lay off the steak and caviar.

Ferreal, though, tuna and eggs are cheap sources of protein, carrots and bananas are cheap veggies/fruits (asparagus always kills me. $3.99/pound, and I cut off 1/3 of it before I cook it? **** that), rice and pasta are cheap, as well. In my salad days, I ate a lot of pasta with olive oil/saltnpepa/oregano, grilled chz/tuna melts, etc. Wait, I still eat a lot of that stuff. Avoid pricey froz foods (can't believe people pay $8 for a frozen pizza).
 

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