Let's start with sharing what is a cheap price for food for you, how low can you buy meat, staples, dairy or produce that you use frequently? Please detail what you would consider your cheapest meal to make for dinner.
What a great question/topic, Brandy! If I can buy on markdown I can usually buy pork & poultry for $1/pound, beef around $2/pound. Beans are probably $1/pound on average. Pasta is a staple; I wait for sales on veggie pasta and whole wheat/blend for $1/box which, depending on shape or size, is 12-16oz. I will buy around 10 boxes of each at a time, which usually lasts me until the next sale comes around. I consider bagged salad a staple in my house and there was a great sale on some for $1/bag recently, but normally I pay closer to $2/bag and we use 1-2 bags a week on average, mostly for lunches. We add tomatoes, cukes, bell pepper, and carrots, so I buy those every other week. I also buy a good amount of dairy.
Our cheapest meal is probably breakfast for dinner.
Eggs (6 total) 75cents
Bacon (1/2 packages) $1.75
Veg & cheese $1
Toast (6 pieces) $1
Jam free (gifted from my grandma)
I think the price would go down if I made waffles or pancakes instead. I wouldn't be using any bread and I would use fewer eggs. The flour, sugar, etc. are cheap. But we would use applesauce or syrup as a topping so maybe the price is comparable.
I guess the next cheapest would be soups or stews that use meat as a flavoring and not the centerpiece -- chili, potato soup, chicken noodle, chicken and dumplings, and vegetable are my family's favorites. I'm sure some people think HM soups are fancy but I see them as one-dish meals, which are my favorite!