My first few posts are going to be me catching up with this time consuming idea I had (or may have been influenced by someone else’s idea, HEY AMELIA!!!!) to make some sort of food blog, or whatever it is I’m making. In all honesty, I’m a hot mess 97% of the time. This could end up becoming an embarrassing blog where I spill my guts while simply posting the pictures of food that I’m eating in a poor attempt to replace my feelings. In all honesty, that wouldn’t be that bad, right?…. (WHERE ARE THE SARCASTIC EMOJIS WHEN I NEED THEM?)

Now that I’ve gotten my formal introduction out of the way, kind of, I will start rambling about my new “I’m-a-poor-20-something-who-loves-food” passions. I permanently moved to Chicago 3 weeks ago and am DUN DUN DUN budgeting. A major expense of mine requiring a necessary cut was recreational food/drink. I love going out and having food cooked for me and drinks poured for me but dayum, they expensive. With that said, I don’t want to go the other extreme and torture myself with the monotonous PB&J and Ramen Noodles 24/7. Don’t get me wrong, I can dig a good peanut butter and jelly sandwich as much as the next “mature” 23 year old can, but not everyday. In my efforts to cure the rut of lame, carb-ridden meals, I have created my own game plan:

I begin by spending my week looking through Pinterest (sigh, I know) at food (SIGH, I KNOW) and finding simple recipes that sound delicious to me. Ideally, I’ve used Pinterest to create my own board of recipes. They usually involve a combination of black beans, avocados, lime, and cilantro because A. they’re good for you B. yum and C. they can be utilized in a ridiculous variety of meals. (This sounds more like strategizing than what it really is: too much time on my hands and an obsession with food.) Once I get a little more comfortable and seasoned (if you will) with the cooking world, I’ll probably amp up my cooking game. Hell, I may even invest in a food processor!

After I’ve begun this pinning-fest, I narrow my options down to around 2 recipes that seem doable and write down the ingredients I need. If the shopping list is longer than 10-15 ingredients, I usually move on to something different because my attention span is respectfully that of a gold fish. I aim to spend no more than $50/week on food and thus far, it’s worked swimmingly. Mathematically, that means I’m aiming to spend approximately  $2.38/meal with the goal of not wanting to eat my arm off because I didn’t get to have a $30 Rare Filet Mignon with mashed potatoes and brussel sprouts for dinner. I put ~$15 aside for essentials, use ~$25 for recipe ingredients and save ~$10 for necessary snacks/treats. This kind of shopping allows me to create 3-4 different breakfast combinations, 3-5 lunch combos, and around 3 dinner combos for the week so I don’t open my cabinet or fridge and complain about the fact that there’s nothing to eat.

Grocery Shopping/Meal Prep Happens on Lazy Saturday Sunday or Monday. Whichever feels the least lazy.

In the past 3 weeks, I have made the following SEXY foods (some I will make posts about, some are a given):

  • Basil, Grape Tomato and Pepperjack Grilled Cheese Sandwich
  • My Rendition of Pizano’s BBQ Chopped Chicken Salad (for much cheaper might I add)
BBQ Chicken Chopped Salad $13.50
Chopped lettuce, black beans, sweet corn, cilantro, basil, crispy corn tortilla strips & cheese, tossed together in our herb ranch dressing. Topped with BBQ chicken breast, diced tomatoes & scallions, served with Italian bread & butter.
  • Avocado Chicken Salad
  • Brown Rice, Black Bean and Squash Burgers
  • Peanut Butter Toast with Banana Slices
  • BBQ Chicken Pizza with Pineapple and Onion
  • Baked Nachos with Pepperjack Cheese

So, in the near future, I will begin my posts, starting with a handful of these recipes. Basically I’ll ramble about my process, what works, what didn’t work, how much it cost to make ___ # of servings and obsess over what I will make over again.


ALSO, PS: I have a lot of free time on my hands. I’m doing this to humor myself and in turn, hopefully humor you. If I’m unsuccessful, well then…. enjoy this copyright cartoon picture of a turd.


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