I’m joining today with more than 200 other food bloggers to fight against hunger, an issue that millions of Americans and even more millions around the world face on a daily basis.
I was struck more than a month ago when I was asked by a blog follower how she would be able to do my Green Smoothie Challenge on a budget of $50 for her family for the week. I had to reply: “You can’t” Of course my reply was more heartfelt and helpful than that, but it made me realize how lucky I am to be able to afford all the fresh produce and healthy foods that I want. When you do the math, this person, with a family of four had a budget of $7.14 per day, or $1.78 per person for food for her family. Those figures broke my heart.
Many impoverished Americans are forced to eat poorly. When boxes of generic macaroni and cheese can be found for .33 cents and a packet of ramen noodles can be bought for less than a quarter, it’s no wonder that some of the nations poorest families eat the most nutritionally devoid foods. It’s a bit disturbing that An apple costs more than a cheeseburger on the dollar menu at a drive thru because the government subsidizes beef the beef, dairy and corn that go into making that hamburger, but it doesn’t subsidize apples.
My goal today was to create a healthy meal for less than a dollar. One that would take less time to create then going through the drive thru and one that would trump that fast food cheeseburger and provide more nutrients.
Simplest Chickpea Salad
- One can chickpeas, drained and rinsed (I used one that my mom canned for me, so it was free, but you can find a generic can of chickpeas at Walmart for .68 cents or less
- 1-2 diced tomatoes, (1/4 lb, bought at .99 cents a pound)
- drizzle of olive oil (pantry item)
- drizzle of red wine or balsamic vinegar (pantry item)
- dash of garlic powder (pantry item)
- 1/2 t. of dried basil (pantry item)
- salt and pepper to taste (pantry items)
Method: Combine all in a bowl. Serves 2 for less than .50 cents per serving
Nutrition Stats for the Drive thru Cheeseburger
|Calories 300||Calories from Fat 110|
% Daily Value Total Fat 12 g 18%, Saturated Fat 6 g 30%, Trans Fat 0 g, Cholesterol 40 mg 13%, Sodium 750 mg 31%, Total Carbohydrate 33 g 11%, Dietary Fiber 2 g 8%, Sugars 6 g, Protein 15 g 30%, Vitamin A (IU) 300 6%, Vitamin C 1.2 mg 2%, Calcium 200 mg 20%, Iron 2.7 mg 15%
Nutrition Stats for the Chickpea Salad
|Calories 289.3||Calories from Fat 45|
% Daily Value Total Fat 4.88 g 8%, Saturated Fat 0.6 g 3%, Trans Fat 0 g, Cholesterol 0 mg 0%, Sodium 636.5 mg 27%, Total Carbohydrate 51.32 g 17%, Dietary Fiber 10.01 g 40% , Sugars 10.89 g, Protein 11.05 g 22%, Vitamin A (IU) 566.99 11%, Vitamin C 15.9 mg 26%, Calcium 75.16 mg 8%, Iron 3.07 mg 17%
I’m certainly NOT the expert on affordable healthful eating. So, for healthy eating on a budget, I invite you to look at my friend Nick’s Blog, Frugal Feeding. His whole agenda is how to eat well and eat affordably. For those wanting to eat cheaply on a vegan diet, I recommend a book by Ellen Jaffe Jones, Eat Vegan on $4 a day.
VISIT: Share Our Strength
WATCH: the A Place at the Table, via Amazon or iTunes
GIVE THANKS: to The Giving Table, for creating this event
DO: Take action! click here and take a minute to send a letter to Congress asking them to support anti-hunger legislation. Doing so will protect nutrition programs that help fight hunger in the US.