* Here’s another budget friendly recipe by Erika, our college student contributor to Everyday Paleo!
Note from Sarah: The cost per person for this meal is based on folks who would have to purchase an entire bottle of olive oil, vinegar, and mustard and also if they purchased the more expensive brands available. Furthermore, this meal although MADE for 2 people would most likely produce leftovers or feed at least 3. Erika has posted budget friendly recipes in the past and has left OUT the cost of staple ingredients and has been given grief for leaving those items out. Also, these reflect HER costs. I’m sure that many of you will be able to find better deals. I also am assuming that she bought an entire package of zucchini from Trader Joe’s and only 3 zucchinis would probably only cost around $1 or $2. If you have on hand olive oil, vinegar, and mustard and you spend the SAME amount as Erika did on her other items, the actual cost of this meal per person for the Chicken and the Vegetables together would be around $8.50 plus leftovers, or a meal for another person. Also, think about all the money that Erika is SAVING by walking home on her break and cooking rather then driving to an eating establishment and spending way more than the cost of this meal and not having any leftovers for later and also eating less healthy options. The cost at the bottom of this post reflects the cost of ALL ingredients, including oil, vinegar, and mustard.
Thank you so much Erika for taking time out of your busy college schedule to show us how this can be done!!
Balsamic Mustard Chicken and Oven Roasted Veggies
Here is another quick and easy meal for two on a budget! Talk about simple and yummy I put this meal together in 20 minutes while I was in between my classes. Luckily I live close enough to school that I can walk home during my inconvenient hour long breaks. I used simple ingredients that I always have stocked up in my pantry and put them together with the fresh veggies and meat I had in my refrigerator from my Sunday stock up shopping trip. Today’s ingredients included: chicken breast, bacon, Brussels sprouts, zucchini, balsamic (I find I love to cook with balsamic I love the tangy flavor it adds) spicy brown mustard, extra virgin olive oil, crushed garlic, and salt and pepper!
Balsamic Mustard Chicken
2 boneless skinless chicken breast (each cut in half long way) (5.97)
1/4 cup Balsamic (3.89)
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil (3.99)
3 cloves of minced (or chopped) garlic (.50)
2 1/2 tablespoons spicy brown mustard (2.59)
Salt and pepper to taste
Rinse off your chicken breast and place them on a cutting board season both sides with salt and pepper to your liking. Place them in a ziplock bag add the balsamic, extra virgin olive oil, spicy brown mustard and garlic. Zip up the bag and massage the chicken in the bag to ensure it all gets coated nicely! place in the refrigerator and let marinade for as long as you want (mine marinated for about 3 hours, the longer the better).
Cooking the chicken:
I like to use a medium size sauce pan; place it on medium high heat and let the pan get nice and hot! Put just a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, place your chicken breast in the pan and brown on both sides. Once you have browned both sides you can turn your heat down just a little to about medium and add in some of the marinade juices cover with a lid and let the juices reduce down in the pan with the chicken. Occasionally checking on the chicken and stirring around the sauce to make sure to pick up all the yummy chicken bits on the bottom of the pan until the chicken is fully cooked and no longer pink on the inside (you can flip the chicken one more time if you would like).
Oven Roasted Bacon Veggies
11 strips of your favorite bacon (one package) (5.49)
3 zucchini’s (4 if they are smaller) (3.68)
1/2 lb of Brussels sprouts (1.49)
extra virgin olive oil (not included in cost because you needed it for the chicken)
Salt and pepper to taste
Cut your bacon into bit size pieces and fry them up till they are nice and crispy. When they are done cooking set the bacon pieces on a paper towel lined plate to soak up the left over bacon grease and set them aside.
Next, wash and dry your veggies. Cut the Brussels sprouts in half place on a cookie sheet that is already covered in foil (easy clean up!!). Next cut the end of of your zucchini’s cut them in half length wise then cut them into half circle shapes and place them on your cookie sheet with your Brussels sprouts. Drizzle with olive oil and roast in the oven at 350 for about 20-30 minutes or until they are starting to get a little golden brown color to them and the Brussels sprouts are tender. For the last 5 minutes you can add your bacon on top of your veggies just to rewarm your bacon. When the veggies are done take them out and sprinkle them with salt and pepper to taste.
Total Cost of both Chicken and Veggies: 27.60
serves 2-3: 13.80
(These prices will vary dependent on where you shop and whether or not you already have some of the staple items already in your pantry. I included the prices for all ingredients, as if no one had any of the ingredients on hand except for salt and pepper)