One of the requests I received from a few readers when I conducted my annual survey is that they would like to see more Feed a Family of 4 for $4 recipes.  I found this recipe last week, and it is a winner.  Not only is it frugal, but it is tasty, nutritious and economical.  (I found it on, but have altered it to suit our family’s tastes and cooking methods.)

Easy To Get Your 5 a Day Vegetarian Chili

1 tbsp. olive oil  (.20)
2 cloves garlic  (.10)
1 red bell pepper, chopped  (1.00)  (I found ours on sale.  If you find red peppers are expensive, green peppers can be substituted.)
2 carrots (.20)
1 small zuchini (.90)
12 oz. frozen corn (.75)
2 tbsp. cumin  (.30)
1 tsp. paprika  (.14)
1 tsp. cinnamon  (.10)
1/2 tbsp. onion powder   (.25)
1 – 28 oz. can diced tomatoes  (1.08)
3 cups cooked kidney beans  (.75)

-Coat bottom of skillet with oil.

-Add garlic, pepper, carrots, zucchini, corn and onion powder to skillet and stir to coat.   (We use onion powder because our 2 year old refuses to touch any dish with onions.  Use two onions, chopped, if you don’t have to contend with a quirky little girl :))

-Saute veggies until soft, about 10 minutes, on medium heat, stirring occasionally.

-Add spices to the veggies, stir to coat, and cook one minute longer.

-Transfer the entire mixture to a slow cooker.

-Add the tomatoes and cooked beans, and stir.

-Cook on low heat for 3 to 6 hours. 

Serves 6 to 8.  (Save for another meal or freeze one meal size portion for another day). 

A yummy complement to this soup would be No Knead Bread.

Total cost for the soup = 5.77; if you serve 8, that is .72 per serving or $2.88 for 4.

The bread will cost roughly $1.30 now, and will also make 8 servings; that is .16 per serving, or .65 for 4. 

The soup with bread is $3.53 for a family of 4, assuming you buy your ingredients on sale.


I shared this post at $5 Dinners.

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