As much as I would love to go with a turkey and the current sales, I would not be able to find a sale turkey for the small size I would need. I would then have to go with the next frugal meat here which is chicken. I can often find chicken leg quarters for .99 cents a lb or under. I would need 4 lbs. I would get a 4lb value pack for $4 so that would be my best bet for meat. I could serve it like turkey with traditional Thanksgiving sides.
Meat, covered @ $4... $6 left to budget with
Box of potato flakes, plain/unseasoned just pure potato flakes $1
*Note, after posting this a user reminded me about how cheap fresh potatoes are and I was so caught in the old minstry box ideas that I was thinking dry potatoes and not fresh. For that $1 I could get a HUGE bag of potatoes to use in MANY ways so it would be a MUCH better value. In that case, I would stick with fresh.
Celery (1 stalk), carrots (1lb bag), onions (1-2) $2
Wheat bread loaf $1
Fresh sweet potatoes or yams $1.50
Cranberry sauce/canned .50
Total = $10
This is where shelf staple herbs/spices really come in need and hand...
Rub the chicken with herbs/spices on hand and roast. Reserve juices. Use the juices with flour and seasonings for chicken gravy. Make mashed potatoes with the potatoes, their soak water and seasonings. Use the 3/4th of the onions and 1/2 the celery with the wheat bread loaf and herbs/spices on hand and make stuffing. Roast the carrots. Now for the fun part. Boil the sweet potatoes/yams. Reserve the broth and set aside. Use some of the broth to mash with the sweet potatoes/yams and sweeteners on hand like sugar and cinnamon. Use the last 1/4th of the onion and the last half of the celery and boil with dry herbs/spices on hand. Simmer on low and then puree for a nice soft pureed savory celery soup! Served chilled cranberry sauce as a side with the meal.
All that could be done for $10 with the following menu outcome:
~ Herb roasted chicken leg quarters with homemade stuffing
~ Mashed potatoes with homemade savory chicken gravy
~ Celery, onion & herb soft soup
~ Sweet and smashed sweet potatoes/yams
~ Cranberry sauce
"Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime." ~Chinese Proverb~