5 Quick and Budget-friendly Meal Ideas for Families

Kristin Stepp
by Kristin Stepp

I’m excited to show you guys some budget-friendly meals for families. These are great meals for busy days when you don’t have a lot of time or energy to make dinner. Let’s get started!

1. Blackstone pizza

I started by oiling up half of the grill and laying down my pizza crusts. I used ready-made pizza crusts to speed things up.

Making blackstone pizza

On the other side of the grill, I put down all of our pizza toppings. This included pepperoni, chopped ham, pineapple, and peppers.

Making blackstone pizza

After I flipped the pizza crusts a couple of times to evenly distribute the heat, I started to spread the pizza sauce.

I sprinkled on some shredded cheese and added the toppings, as well as Italian seasoning.

I closed the grill for a couple of minutes just to melt the cheese, and just like that, dinner was done.

Summer corn and zucchini chowder

2. Summer corn and zucchini chowder

For this chowder, I started by cooking up 4 chopped slices of bacon in a Dutch oven.

Making summer corn and zucchini chowder

While that was browning, I cut some fresh corn off the cob. I used 4 ears of corn.

When the bacon was brown and crispy, I added the corn and some cut-up celery to the Dutch oven. I let all of the sauté for a few minutes. I also added some fresh chopped garlic.

I poured in 5 cups of chicken broth. To make the broth I just mixed water and bouillon powder.

Next, I took 3 medium size russet potatoes and peeled them. Then I chopped them up into pieces. Adding potatoes makes the soup nice and hearty. They also work well with the other flavors.

For seasoning, I threw in some sea salt and black pepper. I put in a lot of onion powder, paprika, dried parsley, and a little dried thyme.

I left everything to cook for about 10 minutes while I prepared the zucchini. I used 1 large zucchini and two medium-sized yellow squash. I washed them off and chopped them up.

Making summer corn and zucchini chowder

I added the chopped veggies into the soup and mixed everything.

Once it started bubbling again, I covered the pot and left it to cook for about 10-15 minutes until everything was nice and tender.

After that, I used a ladle to take out the veggies to blend them. I put them in a cup and used a submersion blender.

Making summer corn and zucchini chowder

When the veggies were blended and creamy I put them back into the pot. Then I added in 2 cups of half and half. I put the lid back on and left it to heat up for about 10 minutes before I served it.

I served it with some Red Lobster cheddar bay biscuits that I made by following the directions on the box.

Texas barbeque sandwiches

3. Texas barbeque sandwiches

For this recipe, I bought a chuck roast. The only other ingredients I used were some barbeque sauce and a packet of chili seasoning.

Making Texas barbeque sandwiches

I put the chuck roast in my crockpot, sprinkled the packet of chili seasoning over it, and about half a bottle of Sweet Baby Ray’s barbeque sauce.

I put the lid on and turned the crockpot to low.

Making Texas barbeque sandwiches

I checked on it after about 7 hours and the meat was nice and tender.

I used two forks and shredded up the meat. I served it on hamburger buns with a side of boxed Betty Crocker scalloped potatoes which I cooked according to the instructions on the box.

I also put down a side of baked beans from the freezer that I heated, as well as some deviled eggs. This was a perfect meal.

Cilantro lime chicken tortillas

4. Cilantro lime chicken tortillas

For this recipe, I am using an instant pot. I put 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts in the bottom of my pot. I added ½ cup of water and a full packet of taco seasoning.

I put in a big handful of fresh cut-up cilantro and added in half a jar of salsa.

Making Cilantro lime chicken tortillas

I juiced 2 limes and added the juice to the pot. I covered the pot, let it pressure cook for 10 minutes, and let it naturally release for 5 minutes.

While that was cooking, I prepared my tostadas by laying them out on a cooking sheet. I sprayed each tortilla with some olive oil spray. I put them in the oven at 450 degrees for 10 minutes.

Making Cilantro lime chicken tortillas

Next, I prepared my refried beans by spreading some onto each tostada.

When the chicken was done I went in with my hand mixer to shred it. I put the shredded chicken on each tostada and sprinkled some shredded cheese on top.

I put the tray back in the oven for 7-8 minutes until the cheese was melted and everything was nicely cooked through.

I served the tostadas with a dollop of sour cream and avocado slices. I sprinkled some cilantro on top. For an extra kick, I also drizzled some hot sauce over them.

Cheesy beef stroganoff

5. Cheesy beef stroganoff

I started this recipe by crumbling and browning 1 pound of ground beef in a frying pan. I seasoned it with salt, pepper, and onion powder. I added in some minced fresh garlic as well as 3 tablespoons of butter.

Making cheesy beef stroganoff

I put in 3 tablespoons of all-purpose flour to thicken everything up. I made and added 2.5 cups of beef broth that I made with water and bouillon powder.

I added ¾ cup of sour cream, a few drops of Worcestershire sauce, and about a tablespoon of mustard.

Making cheesy beef stroganoff

I added a cup of frozen peas and some shredded cheddar cheese. I cooked up 8 ounces of egg noodles to add. I put the noodles and some more shredded cheese in the pan and covered it to let the cheese melt.

I served this dish with a side of asparagus.

Budget-friendly meals for families

I love how easy and convenient it was to make each of these meals. Best of all, every meal was delicious.

Give them a try and leave me a comment to let me know what you think.

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