Cooking on the cheap shouldn't mean minute rice and buttered pasta every night. With a little creativity and a little planning, Gabriella Paiella shows us how to make the most of a tight budget -- without sacrificing flavor or variety.
Today: Forgot to plan ahead? Here's how make something out of nothing using a few pantry staples.
Sometimes you remember to go grocery shopping, to stock up on seconds at the farmers market, to cook meals on Sunday night so you can have lunches and dinners all week long.
You're much more prepared than I am, I'm sure, so here are some impromptu cheap dinners you can make if you have a few key ingredients in your pantry.
If you have...
Penne + tuna: Make Zuni's Pasta with Preserved Tuna.
Bread + olives: Make Viana La Place's Umbrian Black Olive Panino.
Spaghetti, eggs, and bacon: Make Spaghetti Carbonara.
Flour, anchovies, and olives: Make a Pantry Pissaladière.
Lentils and coconut milk: Make a Simple, Homey, Coconut-y Red Lentil Dal.
A can of tomatoes and an onion: Make Marcella Hazan's Tomato Sauce. Eat it with anything.
What's your go-to pantry dinner? Tell us in the comments!