This Instructable contains a few tips on how to avoid that. I'm not saying you can eat like a king on pennies or anything but it sure beats the drive-thru.
Step 1: Get Some Containers
Step 2: Cook Some Meals
Some foods work well, others not so much. You'll be cooking, freezing and reheating them, so you'll have to work with foods that can take that kind of punishment.
Stuff that works well
- casseroles and stews
- pork chops, pork roast
- pot roast
- roast chicken
- lasagne, rigatoni, tortellini
Stuff that's passable
- burgers, meatball sandwiches
- steak, prime rib
- fried chicken
- baked potatoes
Try to come up with a bunch of meals that a) you'll eat, b) are reasonably heathy and c) freeze well. It's not as hard as you might think. Also try to think up a wide variety of dishes. You don't want to eat the same thing over and over.
Step 3: Divide and Freeze
Stack the containers in the freezer. You'll need room in your freezer for a few dozen containers. I've got mine split onto three shelves to make it easier to access each type.
Step 4: Keep Two in the Fridge
Step 5: Reheat and Eat
The dinner pictured here is pot roast with potatoes, carrots, green beans and gravy. The total cost was about $10 (I got a good deal on the roast). I was able to divide it into 5 containers, for a per-meal cost of $2.
It took me about 2 1/2 hours to make but only 30 minutes of that required my physical presence (the rest was simmering time). So, divided over 5 portions, that's 6 minutes per.
A couple of additional tips:
1. Try to find a nice, inexpensive wine. You don't have to drink it every night but it really does make the meals more appealing.
2. Find a good local salad bar. Most grocery stores have them. Every few days, drop by and load up a container. It'll last you three or four days.
3. Keep some fresh fruit around. Apples and bananas are reasonably durable. You can eat these as snacks or as dessert. I'm not saying you have to give up junk food altogether but it helps to have an alternative on hand.
4. As you use up portions, make new ones. Figure on making a new batch about once a week. You can always skip weeks and make two batches next time. Just be sure to keep a running inventory.