Poor Man’s Meal – A Blast From the Past

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Budget food is always a priority, especially in this day and age. The poor man’s meal, in various forms and varieties, has been around since the great depression. It’s a simple combination of ground beef, potatoes, onions, garlic, sweet corn, green peas, and some tomato sauce. You combine this with some seasoning such as salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning, it really doesn’t become that poor tasting. It’s actually quite delightful, inexpensive, and so easy to put together. The great thing is, the total cost is approximately two dollars per serving.

You really can’t go wrong with that. Another thing to note is that the ground beef can be substituted for wieners, sausage, or whatever on sale. You always have to keep that budget in mind.

Difficulty: Intermediate Prep Time 10 mins Cook Time 12 mins Total Time 22 mins
Servings: 4 Calories: 550
Best Season: Suitable throughout the year


I don't know about you but I'm always looking for inexpensive yummy food. This poor man's recipe is certainly a way of achieving that. For eight bucks a pop, a total of two dollars per serving, it certainly meets the requirement of a great midweek meal. As one member said: inexpensive goodness.



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  1. Add the oil and potatoes do a pan over medium high heat. Stir in fry until potatoes are fork tender.

  2. Add in the onion and garlic. Stir and sauté until the garlic is fragrant.

  3. Put the ground beef in and break it up. Fry and mix with the rest of the ingredients until browned and cooked through.

  4. Add in the corn and peas followed by the seasoning. Stir and for a few minutes.

  5. Pour in the tomato sauce, mix, and simmer for 4 to 5 minutes.

  6. Plate, serve, and enjoy your poor man's dinner.

Nutrition Facts

Servings 1

Amount Per Serving
Calories 550kcal
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 25g39%
Saturated Fat 11.98g60%
Trans Fat 2.1g
Cholesterol 65mg22%
Sodium 785mg33%
Potassium 623mg18%
Total Carbohydrate 25g9%
Dietary Fiber 1.8g8%
Sugars 12g
Protein 20g40%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily value may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs. Nutritional values are a within reason estimate and my vary depending on several factors.


As mentioned in the ingredient section, you can substitute the ground beef for wieners or sausages depending what's on sale.

In terms of the vegetables, you can just about to add anything you like.

Feel free to vary the types and amount of seasoning used.

This recipe also works extremely well when put in portion size containers and frozen. Simply thaw and microwave.

Keywords: Budget Food, 30 Minute Recipes, Easy Dinners, Ground Beef

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David Hood

A Food Blogger

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Hey, I’m David Hood And I’m so happy you’re here!! So many of my favorite memories in life seem to take place around the table, especially when surrounded by people I love. And of course, all the better when nourished by some seriously delicious foodHappy Cooking! 


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