The Project

The Project
The goal of this project is to eat well on $300 or less a month or $10 a day.
This only includes feeding one person, me.  The cat will have to fend for himself.  Alright, fine, you know I’m going to feed him, but I’m not putting it in my tally.
This includes 3 meals a day and snacks or dessert on most days.  Mmmm…dessert.
No peanut butter and jelly or ramen. No packaged foods.  No partially hydrogenated fats.  No high-fructose corn syrup.  Just tasty, healthy food on the cheap.
Me, the grill pan, the food processor, the brulee torch that may see some much needed action, together, we’re gonna eat like it’s 1999.
I spend a lot of my time cooking, but a lot of these recipes are pretty quick.  Feel free to try them and let me know what you think.  You can find them listed alphabetically, by day, and eventually, when this is over, I hope to organize them by ingredient.
Food stamp allowance is $150-200 a month
As an additional challenge, I am going to try and stay in this range.  I believe this is entirely possible, but I am just starting, so it may take some time to refine the strategies.  Bear with me.  It may not happen the first month.
Anyone could afford this on minimum wage
Mimimum wage in Illinois is $8 an hour.  Take home would be $1024 a month after taxes.  $300 would be 29% of that income, and $200 would be a mere 19%.  Even on the high end, this is entirely doable for most people. Since it would be more comfortable on the lower end, I’m aiming for $200 or less.
 
I try to stick to USDA health guidelines  
For a lady, such as myself… What?  Stop laughing, mom.  You’re only embarrassing yourself.  Ok, for a lady such as myself, the USDA recommends 2000 calories and 20 – 35% fat.  I tend to be more of the 35-40% fat variety, but I’m working on it.
I try to get the six grains (though I almost never get the requisite 3 from whole grains.  Whole grains and I are still trying to resolve our differences.)  I try to get 2 1/2 cups vegetables.  I often succeed in getting 2 cups of fruit.  Milk/low fat dairy is a sore spot.  Meat I got covered.  No problem on that.
I love eggs too much.  I love bacon too much.  I love cream too much.
I know these things about myself.
Maybe another goal can be changing some of my own culinary crutches.  But the 2000 calories and under with 35% from fat, I can stick to most of the time.  Counts are included for everything and calculated by using mypyramid.gov ‘s site.
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**I am single, work full-time, and go to school part-time.  I try to make things in single servings and fresh as much as possible, but to stay in the realm of an actual workable schedule, some things will need to be frozen. You will not ever catch me defrosting things in the microwave.  I prefer not to reheat anything in the microwave even at work.  We don’t have a stove at work, so reheating lunch in the microwave is sometimes a necessary evil.  For the record, this is not “gourmet” practice.  I frown on it and wish it could be different.

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