Delectable Dime

meal planning on a budget

Easy as 1 2 3

Delectable Dime

by Faith Escher

I don’t know about you, but sometimes no matter what I’m craving I just need it to be easy to make. There are times that I know that my week is going to be extremely full and I know I am not going to feel up to the task of mincing several different kinds of veggies or washing lots of dishes–but the good news is, there are so many amazingly delicious easy recipes! For me, simple is priority this week–so instead of shopping for several dishes that take a lot of ingredients and prep time, I decided to plan ahead for us and collect some recipes that are as easy as one, two, three….ingredients!

All the recipes that you will find below contain only 5-6 ingredients and are easy to prepare. Feel free to arrange the entrees according to your schedule so that you are best served. For example, the sandwiches, sushi rolls, and pizza are better suited for a busy night where you need to take your food to go, or save leftovers for the next day, and the pasta and stuffed bell peppers are ideal for a night at home! I hope you enjoy these simple and easy recipes!

Total Budget: $100 or less
All recipes serve 4

NOTE: Garlic (2) = how many recipes the ingredient garlic is used in. For example, “Garlic (2)” means we will be using garlic in two of our recipes for this week.

The Shopping List For All 5 Dinners

  • 1 lb of your favorite pasta – $0.99 (1)
  • 1 Jar of your favorite tomato sauce – $1.49 (1)
  • 2 Cups cashews – $4.99 (1)
  • 1 Large garlic bulb – $0.50 cents each (2)
  • 8 Slices daiya vegan cheese swiss style slices – $6.00 (1)
  • 1 Tin tomato pizza sauce – $0.99 (1)
  • 1 pizza crust – $1.29 (1)
  • 1 handful fresh cherry tomatoes – $2.79 (1)
  • 1 Loaf of bread – $2.49-$4.00 (1)
  • 1 small container of hummus – $2.50 (1)
  • 1 Bag of avocados – $5.00 (1)
  • 1 Jar sun-dried tomatoes – $3.29 (1)
  • 1 Bin of Arugula – $2.50 (1)
  • 1 Bag of 8 -10 nori seaweed rolls – $5.00-$7.00 (1)
  • 2 Carrots – $1.70 (1)
  • 1 Cup of clover sprouts – $2.50 (1)
  • 4 Tomatoes – $3.50 (1)
  • Head of butter lettuce – $3.00 (1)
  • 4 Large green bell peppers – $4.00 (1)
  • 1 Bunch fresh basil – $2.50 (1)
  • 1 Carton of spinach – $2.50 (1)
  • 1 Package of firm tofu – $2.49 (1)
  • Trader joe’s thai green curry sauce – $2.49 (1)

$64.50- $70 *Prices may fluctuate depending on tax, store, sale and season. I paid 65.75 this week.

If you followed us last week you already have the following; however, if this is your first week you will need to make these additional purchases ($7.48-$10.48) or substitute with ingredients you have in your cupboard.

  • Salt and pepper shakers – $3.49 (1)
  • Olive oil – $3.99-$6.99 for 12 oz container (5)

Recipe No. 1

Creamy Tomato Shells | Cook Time: Approximately 30 minutes

Source: A Pinch of Yum | Link to Instructions

  • 1 pound of your favorite pasta
  • 1 jar your favorite tomato sauce
  • 2 cups cashews
  • ½ cup water
  • garlic clove (optional)
  • herbs and salt to taste

Note: Sometimes a creamy red sauce on warm pasta is the perfect comfort food! Gluten free pasta can be substituted in this recipe, if you can’t find shells, penne is always a great option! As for herbs and salt to taste, add some of the fresh basil from the grocery list!

Recipe No. 2

Margherita Pizza | Cook Time: 17 minutes

Source: Daiya Foods Inc. | Link to instructions

  • 8 slices Daiya vegan cheese swiss style slices
  • 1 tin tomato pizza sauce
  • 1 pizza crust
  • 1 handful fresh cherry tomatoes, chopped in half
  • 7 leaves fresh basi

Note: I like my pizza a little lighter on the cheese than this recipe suggests…I would consider purchasing the vegan shredded cheese rather than the squares if you like your cheese on the lighter side as well.

Recipe No. 3

Hummus, Avocado, and Sun-dried Tomato Sandwich | Cook Time: Approx. 5-10 minutes

Source: One Green Planet, by Linda Wagner | Link to cookbook

  • 2 slices toasted bread or sprouted bread
  • Hummus
  • 1/2 a large avocado
  • Sun-dried tomatoes, to taste
  • Arugula
  • Fresh cracked peppe

Note: My favorite hummus is the tomato basil hummus from Trader Joe’s! I highly recommend it with this sandwich–it really compliments the sun-dried tomatoes! Also, this recipe has the ingredients for one sandwich, but duplicate it exactly for as many sandwiches as you are preparing…the shopping list contains enough ingredients for several sandwiches.

Recipe No. 4

No Rice Raw Vegan Sushi | Cook Time: 30 minutes

Source: The Global Girl | Link to instructions

  • 5 sheets of nori sheets
  • 1/2 cup of shredded carrots
  • 1/2 cup of clover sprouts
  • 1/2 cup of cubed tomatoes
  • 5 large green lettuce leaves

Note: This recipe also has the option of a cashew dip to add to the sushi rolls. Since this week is about keeping the ingredients list short and simple, I didn’t include the sauce in the list, but feel free to make it if the time allows!

Recipe No. 5

Green Curry Stuffed Bell Peppers | Cook Time: 1 hour

Source: The Collegiate Vegan, | Link to instructions

  • 3 large, green bell peppers
  • 1 cup brown rice
  • 1 cup chopped spinach (fresh or frozen)
  • ½ block tofu, chopped into small cubes
  • 1 cup Trader Joe’s thai green curry sauce (or other type of curry sauce)

Print Friendly Version of this pagePrint Get a PDF version of this webpagePDF

1…2…3…4…5 Ingredients and 1…2…3…4…5 Easy entree recipes! I hope that you enjoy having a list of delicious recipes that you can make on a dime, in half of the time.


Daiya Foods Inc. (N/A). Margherita Pizza. Retrieved March 1, 2017, from daiyafoods.com

website: http://daiyafoods.com/recipes/margherita-pizza/

Heising, M. (2013, February 18). Green Curry Stuffed Peppers. Retrieved March 8, 2016,

from collegiatevegan.com website:


Ndoema. (n.d.). No Rice Raw Vegan Sushi. Retrieved March 8, 2017, from

theglobalgirl.com website: http://theglobalgirl.com/raw-vegan-recipes-no-rice-vegan-sushi-clover-sprouts-basil-jalapeno-cashew-dip/

Ostrom, L. (2016, December 12). Creamy Tomato Shells. Retrieved March 1, 2017,

from pinchofyum.com website: http://pinchofyum.com/creamy-tomato-shells

Wagner, L. (2016, July 10). Hummus, Avocado, and Sun-dried Tomato Sandwich [Vegan].

Retrieved March 8, 2017, from Onegreenplanet.org website:

Hummus, Avocado, and Sun-dried Tomato Sandwich [Vegan]



The Lunch Box: Kid-Friendly, Eco-Friendly, Budget-Friendly

As we approach a new school year it’s time to start thinking about packing lunches again. Packing a meal for the children that we love and care for takes time and thought…

Read More →

Vitamix My Breakfast

I recently became the proud new owner of a Vitamix, and I can say without exaggerating that it has been a life changer! One of the biggest differences it has made…

Read More →

My Vegan Luau

I grew up participating in the beautiful festivities of the Hawaiian Luau. Whether I was visiting the Island of Oahu with my family and attending a luau or whether we were having one of own…

Read More →


After the spiralizer hit the shelves, it didn’t take long for people to go out and buy one of their very own! For some people, it was a delicious no-noodle zucchini pesto…

Read More →

My Vegan Easter Recipes

Easter is such a fun holiday, for me it is full of new life, color and family. In years past Easter eating would have centered around dairy and meat…

Read More →

Slow Days, Slow Cooker

I have recently renewed my great a appreciation for the slow cooker. Not only is a crockpot easy to use, but with a crockpot you can throw everything together and let it cook on its own…

Read More →


There’s nothing like a casserole to warm the heart and home. Casseroles are easy to take to a potluck, plenty to share when friends come over to eat…

Read More →

Stay Well

Most of us begin the New Year with resolve to be well. We may have a goal to implement more exercising, eat healthfully, or achieve various career goals…

Read More →

The Full Year

The new year snuck up on me, but not in a stressful way. I breathe it in slowly like an unexpected breeze and inhale it deeply with intention like so much steam rising from a tea cup…

Read More →