On the Cheap

18 Budget-Friendly Meals (Because Presents Can Be Pricey)

December  5, 2017

At the risk of sounding like a goody two-shoes (although, hey, who wants just one good shoe?), giving gifts is my favorite part of the holidays. I love dreaming up the perfect presents for friends and family, whether it’s handmade coasters, jars of nutty granola, chunky sweaters, or tried-and-true kitchen tools. But I don’t love how empty my bank account feels as we inch through the month.

We all know it’s the thought—not the price tag—that truly matters, and there are loads of ways to spend less on gifts during the holidays. But in addition to DIY-ing gifts, I’m looking for other thrifty ideas to cut back on December spending. Cooking my own meals is a good start, and specifically budget-friendly dishes are even better. If you, too, are looking for inexpensive dinners this season, here are 18 wallet-friendly dishes that just make sense.

Tell us what you're giving (and cooking) this month!

Food52's Automagic Holiday Menu Maker
View Maker
Food52's Automagic Holiday Menu Maker

Choose your holiday adventure! Our Automagic Menu Maker is here to help.

View Maker

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

Katie is a food writer and editor who loves cheesy puns and cheesy cheese.

1 Comment

judy December 6, 2017
great, easy recipes. The Thai one I tried in a modified version, and served over rice noodles instead of in an omelette. It was so good my family asked for it a second night. And I have been inspired to do and Indian curry version as well. Thank you. I will try a few of the others.