SNAP Challenge Day 5

Day 5

I am thankful for having taken this challenge. How could I have eaten this week with $22.50 if I did not know how to cook? Cooking on a budget brought back so many memories of my mom in the kitchen. I love sharing my love for cooking and I hope if anyone reads and makes any of these recipes that they know I was having fun in the kitchen. Cooking does take time and so does the clean up, but it is something I do because I believe nourishes more than my body and my family — it creates healthy traditions and build communities, I believe that.  I went to the store closest to the Oakwood Food Pantry in Troy, NY. and I did not shop with recipes in mind. I just got ingredients I could afford, like to eat, and thought it would be filling and nutritious. The fun was to figure out how to use them so they would be tasty, but I did rely on years of cooking experience to make that happen. These are simple recipes that did not take long to put together. I did not get garlic and I missed that a lot this week. My ingredients looked like the groceries I usually bring home to feed my family, minus coffee, nuts, chocolate… and because of that, I did have trouble staying alert in the afternoons without good snacks, but I was not hungry. I felt thankful and blessed. I do have a lot of grain leftovers, but most of stores we shop at does not offer bulk shopping. This is very hard if one is shopping for one or two people. I did figured out a few more recipes for my recipe box and I am also happy to learn more about SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.)

Here are the leftovers: 1 qt of cooked brown rice and lentils,  1 cup of cooked rice pilaf, 2 cups of cooked frozen pinto beans, 1 1/2 cups oats, a couple of serving of noddles, 2 carrots, 1/2 cup broccoli, 1 cup of black beans and 1 cup of brown rice, 1/4 cup of lentils, 3/4 of an onion, 3 eggs. I made 3 cups of sauerkraut of leftover cabbage and grew lentils in a jar–1 cup yield 6 cups.

snap challenge leftovers

and what I ate today:

Breakfast: Frozen Banana-Oat Smoothie »12 ounces — on the go, it works.


Lunch: Broccoli Lentil Sprout Frittata with carrots sticks


1. Set oven to broil to preheat

2. In an oven safe pan (I used a 8 1/2 inch cast iron), add olive oil to coat the pan and cook 1/2 cup of chopped brocolli, 1/4 chopped onion, onion and lentil sprouts until soft, a couple of minutes.

3. Add 2 beaten eggs to the cooked hot veggies.

4. Place the oven safe pan under broiler in the middle rack of the oven, for about 5 minutes until golden and eggs cooked. Check around 3 minutes as ovens may vary in temperature.

Dinner: Veggie Chili


This was so good on this cold night–cold and we saw the first snow flurries of the season. I took the chili to bible study to share since I was not having the pizza. I added to the crock pot on low for 4 hours: 2 cups of cooked pinto beans, 2 cups of cooked black beans, 1 cup of the tomato sauce, 1/2 onion, 2 chopped carrots, broccoli stems, and the other half of the jalapeno. I added my taco seasoning, chipotle powder and salt to taste. Yum!


3 thoughts on “SNAP Challenge Day 5

  1. kathleen lisson says:

    Thank you so much for sharing these experiences and recipes. Most of the writing I have seen on the issue of food insecurity is focused on the fact that we do not do enough to provide for our most vulnerable citizens. I love that you have tried to live more simply and focused on using natural ingredients to meet the challenge. Kudos!

  2. recipestories says:

    Thanks for the writing Kathleen. One can feel so helpless… food insecurity affects all of us. I try to share what I learned watching my own mother. She made the most with what we had (and still does.) Rice and beans could have been boring, but it is nutritious food we can build on. We can encourage each other to go back to basic, learn to cook, and find our way to nutrition and maybe naive of us to image, a time people will not experience hunger.

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