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3 Ways to Rock Meatless Meals

Cut the grocery budget each week with these 3 easy ways to make meatless meals deliciously amazing!

Guest post from Steph of Cheapskate Cook:

You probably know that serving at least one meatless meal every week will help save you a lot of grocery money over time. Unfortunately, our family members might not be on-board with a plant-based dinner.

How do you serve meatless meals and still keep the troops happy?

I’ve found 3 easy ways.

1. Add Cheese

I know it’s the easy way out, but adding cheese is almost always a guaranteed crowd-pleaser.

Who can resist melting cheese?

We serve it with Meatless Nacho Dip, 5-minute Lentils & Rice, and Cheesy Lentil Pie.

Don’t forget classics like homemade pizza and 1-Pot Macaroni & Cheese.

2. Cook What Your Family Loves

If you try a meatless recipe that your family loves, SAVE IT. In many cases, you can rotate through their top 3-5 meals once or twice a week without anyone getting tired of them.

For example, my kids love Cumin Beans & Cornbread, vegetarian Homemade Chimichangas, and anything made with lentils. If I plan at least 1-2 of those meals every week, everyone is happy.

3. Make it “Mostly” Meatless

Maybe you or a family member just doesn’t like a meal without a little bit of meat — if that’s the case, try making a mostly-meatless meal.

This can be Hamburger Soup with most of the meat substituted with beans or lentils, Chicken Noodle Soup with a few more vegetables (or some white beans) and a little less chicken, or a pan of Mostly Meatless Nacho Dip.

Bonus Tip: Suck it up, Buttercup

When money is tight, we all have to make sacrifices. Certainly, we want the loved ones at our table to be happy with their meals, meatless or no. However, learning to do without builds character and keeps the bills paid.

Sometimes, we just have to suck it up and add a little extra cheese!

Find Steph at Cheapskate Cook, where you’ll get quick meal hacks, frugal recipes, free menu plans, and the tools to save money and eat healthy even without a health food store.

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  • Amie says:

    My favorite reduced meat/meatless meals are: soups, quiche, and burritos/tacos with homemade refried beans or black beans. We also stretch our ground turkey by adding beans or oatmeal when I make burgers, meatloaves, and meatballs.

    • Meg says:

      Thanks for those great tips! -Meg, MSM Team

    • We love vegetarian tacos and burritos! And I was actually thinking the other day about using oats to stretch meatballs and burgers – do you have a go-to recipe for that?

      • Amie says:

        I do not have a go-to recipe but I started adding in 1/4 cup oats to 1 lb ground turkey and slowly moved it up from there to 1/2 a cup. I like to add seasons that we like (onion powder, garlic, salt, pepper). I usually cook a bag of black beans in my slow cooker with an onion, cumin, black pepper, and some chili powder, strain them, and flash freeze them on a pan. I keep them in a big freezer bag. When I want some for meatballs, I throw frozen beans in my blender with additional seasoning (oregano and more garlic) to chop them down and just mix it into the meat with an egg for a binder. I use the same beans for burritos/tacos.

  • Diane says:

    Chili is really good meatless. We eat a lot of eggs, too.

  • K says:

    I made a crockpot tamale pie with two kinds of beans & black beans with rice this week. I plan to make potato salad (as the main course) & potato chowder in the next week. Meatless is a great way to lower cholesterol! 🙂

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