Tasty & Cheap Meal From the Great Depression: Macaroni & Tomatoes

All Things Mandy
by All Things Mandy

Welcome back to my channel. This is All Things Mandy. Today, I will show you a cheap meal from the Great Depression. I’m really excited about this one because I actually grew up eating this Great Depression meal.

My mom made it a lot, so I know it’s going to be delicious. This meal costs less than $3 for four servings. The total cost, for four servings, is $2.36. We are making macaroni and tomatoes.


All you need for this recipe is three main ingredients.

Elbow macaroni

Firstly, you need a cup of elbow macaroni. A box of elbow macaroni contains two cups and costs $0.92 at Walmart.

Can of diced tomatoes

I’m going to be using two 14.5-ounce cans of diced tomatoes. I chose to get one can of diced tomatoes that also have onions, celery, and green bell pepper, just to add a little flavor to this dish.

We are also going to be using butter, salt, and pepper. It’s a super simple meal, and I know it will be delicious. 

Cooking the pasta

Cooking the pasta

I’ve got my pasta water on. I’ll add some salt to it and then drop in my cup of elbow macaroni.

Draining the pasta

Next, I’m draining the pasta, but leaving a little bit of water. Then I’ll put the pot with pasta back on the stove. 

Adding a stick of butter

Making the sauce

I’m mixing a stick of butter into the pasta and letting it melt. I’m also adding salt and pepper. 

Adding the diced tomatoes

After preparing my elbow macaroni, I’m going to put in the two cans of diced tomatoes, liquid and all. You want this to have a soupy consistency. I’m going to add in the cans and give it a stir.

Allow it to cook an additional five to ten minutes on the stove, just to heat the tomatoes through.

Macaroni and tomatoes

Tasting the dish

Once the five to ten minutes is up, this is what your macaroni and tomatoes should look like. 

Cheap meals from the great depression

I dished mine out in this cup serving. It’s really hot. We are going to taste the macaroni and tomatoes. 

It tastes just like I remember it from when my mom made it. It’s flavorful. It’s tomatoey. It’s just comforting. And it's super cheap. You definitely need to try this Great Depression recipe. 

Cheap meals from the great depression

I hope I inspired you to feed your family something delicious this week. What cheap meals do you like to cook? Let us know in the comments.

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