Have you ever cooked on a budget? I don’t mean picking between name brand or store brand or using a coupon – I mean having only a few dollars for food and needing to stretch it. For millions of Americans, food insecurity is an everyday reality.
As a food blogger, it’s easy to get wrapped up in the world of fancy ingredients and latest trends. It’s easy to forget that the plentiful food and well-stocked pantry we have is privilege – but it’s one I really don’t want to take for granted.
September is Hunger Action Month – a time to bring attention to food insecurity. According to the US Department of Agriculture, 1 in 8 Americans were food insecure in 2017. That’s 40 million people – more than 12 million of which are children – with a lack of consistent access to enough food for an active, healthy life.
We’re officially into the phase of Lent where meatless Fridays feel like a chore. The new meals I was most excited to make have already been tried out and I’m trying really, really hard not to just fall back on pizza and fish sticks.
This meal was a bit of a compromise. I had something veggie-packed and healthier planned – but cheesy comfort food sounded much better for the night. And it was.
We topped leftovers with grilled chicken and pulled pork for lunches the next day – both were great!
1 cup rice, uncooked
1 Tbsp. olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 small onion, diced
1 red pepper, diced
1 cup frozen corn, thawed
1 cup canned black beans, drained and rinsed
1 1/2 cups red enchilada sauce
1/2 cup of green salsa
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/4 tsp. cumin
Pinch of Salt and Pepper
2 cups shredded Mexican blend cheese
Cook rice according to package directions.
In a large skillet, heat the olive oil until shimmering. Add the garlic, onion, and pepper and cook until onion is soft and translucent – about five minutes.
Add in rice, corn, black beans, enchilada sauce, green salsa, and spices. Mix until well combined and cook for an additional five minutes, until everything is heated through.
Sprinkle the cheese over the top and cover. Cook until cheese is melted and serve immediately.