Sunday, April 25, 2010

Why I keep boxed Mac and Cheese in the pantry

Now, I don't always keep it in the pantry. And it's usually reasonably "healthy" - very few ingredients that you won't recognize. You can substitute "pasta and marinara sauce" for "Mac and cheese" if you like, also, but I'd argue that Mac and cheese is easier.

You see, on occasion (once a month?) there's a night. When, you really don't know what to cook. This week, for me, it was Thursday. We were out of leftovers. And Thursday is CSA pick up day. So I have zero veggies in the house, and I don't know what we will get. So I can't really plan around it.

That's when the answer is boxed mac and cheese. And a frozen veggie would go well too, but we had kale chips. Because we got kale.

Why is it useful? It saves me from Dominos. The thing with cooking is - the more you do it, the easier it gets. Just see yesterday's post to see how you can learn to take a bit of this and a bit of that...and make a delicious healthy meal with little effort. Even then, you may find yourself on a Thursday night (which is my Friday because I'm temporarily working Sundays), tired, with PMS, and not wanting to cook. Friday is grocery shopping day, so the fridge is looking pretty bare as far as "extras" go. All you need is the box and 2 Tbsp of milk. And about 20 minutes.

Not that there is anything wrong with Dominos. But there is the cheap factor. The cheapest pizza from Dominos is about $7 and you have to drive to get it (or pay a tip for delivery) and is generally so good that you'll eat the whole darned thing (i.e., too much). Not so with mac and cheese.

Here's what Thursday's meal cost us:
Mac and cheese (0.99) + 2 Tbsp milk (0.01) plus a little extra grated cheddar (0.24)
Handful of tortilla chips (0.50)
Homemade guacamole with one avocado (free) + 2Tbsp salsa (0.09) + 2 Tbsp sour cream (0.05)
Kale chips with one bunch kale (1.50) plus 2 Tbsp olive oil (0.22)

For a grand total of $3.60 for three people, and extra mac and cheese for my lunch on Friday.


Anonymous said...

i love mac and cheese- and the boxed kind too!

Anonymous said...

We do ours with a can of tuna and some mixed frozen veggies. Reminds me of my childhood.