If you’re wondering why your grocery bills are rising like the sweltering summer temperatures, well, same. You can thank inflation for that. The good news? There are plenty of ways to save on your weekly dinner menu, and these seven recipes are proof. Think filling vegetarian pastas, swappable ingredients and creative cooking methods that maximize flavor.
Here’s What to Cook Every Night This Week (August 1 – 7)
1 sweet onion
2 yellow onions
1 red onion
1 large eggplant
2 medium sweet potatoes
1 red bell pepper
2 cups snap peas
2 bunches broccolini
2 heads garlic
4 cups baby arugula
1 bunch fresh parsley
1 bunch fresh basil
1 large bunch fresh cilantro
1 small knob fresh ginger
1 bunch scallions
1 jalapeño (optional)
2 avocados (optional)
2 to 3 cups shredded chicken (e.g., from a rotisserie chicken)
Four 5- to 6-ounce trout fillets (or any other thin fish)
½ cup grated pecorino
⅓ cup milk
¾ cup crumbled goat cheese
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 package Mexican blend shredded cheese
Sour cream (optional)
1 pound bite-size pasta (such as rigatoni)
1 pound long pasta (such as bucatini)
1 cup white rice
Canned and Packaged Goods
Two 28-ounce cans crushed tomatoes
1 package corn tortillas (taco or fajita size)
1 jar roasted red peppers
12 ounces green enchilada sauce
Pantry Ingredients: Extra-virgin olive oil, kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper, crushed red pepper flakes, dried oregano, chili powder, ground cumin, soy sauce, rice vinegar, fish sauce, dark brown sugar, neutral oil
Monday: Pasta Alla Norma With Eggplant, Basil And Pecorino
Aside from being the next best thing to a sunny Italian getaway, this pasta manages to be filling without any meat, thanks to the tender, sauteed eggplant. Instead of store-bought sauce, you’ll save some money by easily making your own with canned tomatoes.
Tuesday: Slow Cooker Mediterranean Frittata
It’s eight ingredients including salt and pepper, and you can basically dump everything in a slow cooker and walk away. Use the arugula, red peppers and goat cheese as a starting point, but feel free to swap in other ingredients if you have them—a fridge cleanout, if you will.
Wednesday: Spicy Sweet Potato Tacos
We like to serve this filling taco-style with charred corn tortillas, but you could also wrap it in flour tortillas for burritos or fry it into quesadillas with a little melty cheese. It’s versatile like that.
Thursday: Zoodle Stir-fry
Stir fries are a no-brainer for flavorful, filling and lightning-fast weeknight meals. But instead of serving one with boring rice, go all-veggie by giving zucchini noodles (aka zoodles) a try. If you don’t have a zoodle slicer, you can cut the squash into thin strips or use a vegetable peeler to make ribbons.
Friday: Easy Roasted Tomato Bucatini
Just because this sauce is made with four ingredients doesn’t mean it’s bland. The tomatoes get jammy and concentrated in the oven, and the butter adds tons of rich flavor. Instead of buying another type of cheese, use some of the extra grated pecorino from Monday night for a similar effect.
Saturday: Easy Green Chicken Enchiladas
If you’re not yet on the rotisserie chicken train, these enchiladas will get you there. Stretch your dollar by swapping the flour tortillas with the corn ones that are left over from your sweet potato tacos.
Sunday: Caramelized Black Pepper Trout
This sweet-and-salty treatment is designed to be versatile, so don’t feel beholden to buying trout if there’s another, cheaper option in the case. You could even swap in tofu, cauliflower or cabbage steaks. (And same goes for the broccolini.)
For even more great recipes, check out our first cookbook, Only the Good Stuff.
Katherine Gillen is a writer, recipe developer and food stylist with a degree in culinary arts and professional experience in New York City restaurants. She used to sling sugary desserts in a pastry kitchen, but now she's an avid home cook and fanatic baker.