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    20 Cheap Dinner Ideas That Won't Break The Bank

    All affordable, all delicious.

    Zoe Burnett / BuzzFeed

    We recently asked the BuzzFeed Community to share their go-to cheap dinner recipes. Here's what they said — along with a bunch of our own weeknight favorites!

    1. Easiest Noodle Bowl

    This recipe amps up whole wheat spaghetti by tossing it in a simple sauce that includes garlic + soy sauce. Recipe here.

    2. Baked Eggs in Marinara Sauce

    Using store-bought marinara sauce means prep is a breeze. Recipe here.

    3. 4-Ingredient Slow Cooker BBQ Sandwiches

    Pork + root beer + barbecue sauce + hamburger buns. Recipe here.

    4. Lentil & Butternut Squash Chili

    Loaded with inexpensive pantry staples — like canned tomatoes, beans, and lentils. To make it vegetarian and vegan-friendly, just swap the chicken stock for veggie stock. Recipe here.

    5. Restaurant-Style Fried Rice

    This version saves time by using frozen peas and carrots, and saves money by going meatless. Recipe here.

    6. Margherita French Bread Pizza

    These are completely customizable depending on your budget — and for easier cleanup, you can line the sheet pan with foil before baking. Recipe here.

    7. Rotisserie Chicken Ramen

    Long live the ever-affordable rotisserie chicken. 🙏 Find this and six other ways to dress up the grocery store staple here.

    8. Big-Batch Minestrone

    Prep takes all of 10 minutes, and you'll have plenty of leftovers. Recipe here.

    9. Black Bean–Stuffed Sweet Potatoes

    Packed with protein, and you can add toppings (like avocado, sour cream, or herbs) depending on your budget. Recipe here.

    10. Fettuccine Alfredo

    This lightened-up version goes easy on the cream. Recipe here.

    11. Vegan Portobello Mushroom Fajitas

    This version swaps pricier steak for mushrooms, and uses cashew cream to keep things vegan. (But you can use regular sour cream too.) Recipe here.

    12. 3-Ingredient Lemon Butter Cod

    Dressed up with a side of tartar sauce. Recipe here.

    13. Lemony Kale & White Bean Soup

    Perfect for winter, and needs only a handful of ingredients. Recipe here.

    14. Budget Goulash

    This uses ground beef to keep costs down and makes enough for the whole family. Recipe here.

    15. Six-Layer Beef and Potato Dinner

    This cooks itself in the slow cooker, and most of the layers — potatoes, carrots, onions — are inexpensive staples. Recipe here.

    16. Mujadarra

    This Middle Eastern fave combines brown rice + lentils + caramelized seasoned onions. (And fair warning that you'll want to put the latter on just about everything.) Recipe here.

    17. Crock-Pot Salsa Chicken

    Three steps to dinner: 1) Toss chicken breasts into a slow cooker. 2) Pour your favorite salsa on top. 3) Let the meal make itself. Recipe here.

    18. Simple Black Bean Soup

    Black beans + salsa + cilantro + cumin + garlic. Recipe here.

    19. Creamy Tomato & Spinach Pasta

    Is there anything better than a heaping bowl of pasta? (There is not.) Recipe here.

    20. Sheet Pan–Roasted Chicken and Vegetables

    This recipe goes 50/50 on the chicken and vegetables, but if you need to make things even cheaper, just adjust the ratio. Recipe here.

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