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  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigB08822 View Post
    How can you make tacos for cheaper than taco bell? Everytime I make tacos I am shocked at how expensive it is. Between the meat, lettuce, tomatoes, shells, etc it really racks up to a big bill. Then if you want anything extra like salsa, guacamole, onions, etc it just adds that much more to the bill. I haven't even mentioned cheese!
    You can get 2 tacos for .99 cents at Jack in the Box! I have no idea what's in them, but I love them!

    As far as making tacos at home, IMO real tacos should never have lettuce, tomatoes and all that other stuff. Taco shells? And I agree with Rex, making tacos for one is not that cheap. But it's definitely cheap to make for 3-5 people. With less than $15 you can feed them using the ingredients you listed. Less if you leave out the cheese.
    Smoke a ciggy and have some fun!!!

  2. #22

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    The more I read articles like this, the more I'm apt to getting my own grinder. I have already purchased a food slicer and make my own roasted turkey, roasted chicken and roasted sirloin tip - then slice them for sandwiches. As much as I don't eat the right food all the time, I'm more and more drawn to food that is not processed.

    When I heard about ammonia gas being used to "clean" "beef" to make it suitable for human consumption, I pretty much had to give up any burgers at restaurants and other establishments. It's not easy, but in the long run will be way more healthy.
    Give me one more quiet night, before this loud morning gets it right, and does me in.
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  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigB08822 View Post
    How can you make tacos for cheaper than taco bell? Everytime I make tacos I am shocked at how expensive it is. Between the meat, lettuce, tomatoes, shells, etc it really racks up to a big bill. Then if you want anything extra like salsa, guacamole, onions, etc it just adds that much more to the bill. I haven't even mentioned cheese!
    Depends on what your definition is of "cost."

    While a Taco Bell taco may be cheaper than one you make at home, is it really worth it? Think about why they can make them for less and still be profitable -aside from volume, they also buy lesser quality ingredients, and from what FigureSpins describes, sacrifice on cleanliness (and staffing apparently - I've had some extremely slow experiences at Taco Bell!). And still have money left over for all those chemical additives.

    While you may pay less at the Taco Bell cash register, regularly eating poor quality food will eventually take a toll on your health. For many, you also have to drive there, and mileage improves dramatically when a trip covers a full week's worth of meals instead of just one.

    Then there's the greater costs to the community, depending on what matters to you. Cheap food often carries a large carbon footprint as foods are shipped long distance and refrigerated during the journey. Factory farming (animal and vegetable) relies heavily on genetically modified foods, pesticides, fertilizers, drugs, hormones and preservatives - which end up in our soil and water systems, not to mention our own bodies. Factory farming of animals is for the most part very nasty to the animals themselves, and there are some who believe that the conditions they are forced to live and die have a direct effect on us when we eat the meat.

    We all have our own reasons for choosing to eat fast food, how often, or not at all. The point is that I think our bodies and our health and that of our families is important enough that it's "worth" considering the much larger picture than simply the immediate cost at the cash register and convenience at the moment.

  4. #24
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    8 tortillas at TJ's - $2.50 (you can find cheaper). 85% ground beef (or higher), I buy it on sale at about $2.30 a pound. Kraft or other shredded cheese $2.00 on sale (the local stores are always having cheese wars). Tomatoes and lettuce are normally on sale around here, but to me, lettuce is a garnish, has no value nutritionally and can be skipped. The seasoning packet is around .79 normally, but is always on sale too. If you make it a lot, like we do, get the bigger sizes from the BJs/Sams' Clubs. I use sour cream as a garnish (and yep, I buy it on sale).

    We normally have leftovers, I turn it into nachos for an appetizer or weekend lunch.

    Next time you buy at "Taco Hell", look at how little 'meat' is actually inside the shell. My teen stuffs his shell full and rarely comes back for thirds, but if he wants food there, he used to ask for 4.

    I use chicken instead of ground beef too. Sautee up some frozen onions/peppers with it too. They were to die for. I've also made steak fajitas for cheap - just have to watch for the steak to go on sale. Last week it was a piece of boneless sirloin steak for $2.12 (on sale 3.99 a lb.) that I turned into 4 steak tacos.

    It's tough to shop cheap and eat healthy, but I try. I refuse to eat dinner served through a window.

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by dbell1 View Post
    8 tortillas at TJ's - $2.50 (you can find cheaper). 85% ground beef (or higher), I buy it on sale at about $2.30 a pound. Kraft or other shredded cheese $2.00 on sale (the local stores are always having cheese wars). Tomatoes and lettuce are normally on sale around here, but to me, lettuce is a garnish, has no value nutritionally and can be skipped. The seasoning packet is around .79 normally, but is always on sale too. If you make it a lot, like we do, get the bigger sizes from the BJs/Sams' Clubs. I use sour cream as a garnish (and yep, I buy it on sale).

    I use chicken instead of ground beef too. Sautee up some frozen onions/peppers with it too.
    You can do it even cheaper if you buy a block of cheddar or monterey jack and shred it yourself. You can use the rest of the cheese for other things.

    And onions run about 99 cents a pound here, so you can get a whole fresh one for less than that and cut it yourself for fajitas. Fresh peppers are only a bit more expensive.

    I don't buy the seasoning packets. Use the spices in your cupboard--cumin, chili, and paprika mainly. There are many recipes online to tell you how much to use.

  6. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by BigB08822 View Post
    How can you make tacos for cheaper than taco bell?
    I usually take care of fast-food Mexican cravings with baked tortilla chips, low-fat shredded cheese, and a can of Goya black beans. I heat up the black beans with some seasoning, cover a plate with tortilla chips, cover the tortilla chips with cheese, then let the black beans melt the cheese. Putting another plate on top and upside-down completes the melting process . I guess it costs about $5 each time I do it (the bag of chips lasts for a while), but the content is probably the equivalent of 4 tacos.

  7. #27

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    I guess there is a huge difference in cooking for 1 or 2 and cooking for 3 or 4. The latter is almost always a better bargain but many times it is cheaper for my bf and I to eat out or get fast food. I know you can also take into account many thing to come up with cost but I was being very simple and simple talking about how much money was leaving my wallet at that time.

    As for being shocked by shells, what!? LOL! I love crunchy tacos. I also like soft tacos but around here it is very expensive to get tortillas. I never could figure out why but apparently it has something to do with having to make them fresh and somewhat locally and they cost more. I just can't make myself pay so much for tortillas when I prefer a crunchy taco anyway. Oh, and no beans for me, I need BEEF! I am from Texas, after all.
    -Brian
    "Michelle would never be caught with sausage grease staining her Vera Wang." - rfisher

  8. #28
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    ooo, if we are sharing recipes, here's one we love, snipped from Taste of Home several years back:

    Chili Chicken Enchiladas - serves four with side or 2 with leftovers

    * 1/4 cup chopped onion
    * 2 garlic cloves, minced
    * 1 tablespoon butter
    * 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
    * 1 cup chicken broth
    * 1 can (4 ounces) chopped green chilies
    * 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
    * 1/8 teaspoon pepper
    * 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Monterey Jack cheese, divided
    * 1/2 cup sour cream
    * 2 cups chopped cooked chicken
    * 4 flour tortillas (8 inches)
    * Sliced ripe olives, chopped tomatoes and green onions, optional

    1. In a small saucepan, saute onion and garlic in butter until tender. Combine flour and broth until smooth; gradually add to pan.
    2. Stir in the chilies, coriander and pepper. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened. Remove from the heat; stir in 1/2 cup cheese and sour cream until cheese is melted.
    3. Combine chicken and 3/4 cup sauce. Place about 1/2 cup chicken mixture down the center of each tortilla. Roll up and place seam side down in a greased 11-in. x 7-in. baking dish. Pour remaining sauce over enchiladas. Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 20 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake 5-10 minutes longer or until cheese is melted. Garnish with olives, tomatoes and green onions if desired. Yield: 4 enchiladas.


    For tacos, sometimes we make the usual fast food kind, but sometimes we'll go a little gourmet with pulled pork in a fajita-style sauce, topped with shredded romaine, thinly sliced radishes (try it!), sour cream and a mild white cheese (we can't get queso fresco around here, so go with Monteray Jack instead).

    I'm not a big fan of packets either, because often you're paying for a lot of filler, preservatives, sugar and extra salt. Instead, I have a jam-packed spice cupboard, and I LOVE this place - The Spice House.


    ETA - some of the product at The Spice House may look pricey, but I can tell you from many happy purchases that the quality is outstanding. So much so that in recipes, we often reduce the quantities because their spices are so much more flavourful than the tired old jars that used to sit in our cupboard. I pay more to have it shipped across the border, and IMO it's totally worth it!
    Last edited by Jenny; 01-26-2011 at 08:34 PM.

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigB08822 View Post
    I guess there is a huge difference in cooking for 1 or 2 and cooking for 3 or 4.
    We are only two as well, but as dbell says, you can plan for leftover ingredients once you've prepared them and use them for other meals later in the week. The enchilada recipe I just posted always leaves leftovers that become lunch for me the next day, or a snack for hubby. When we make Mexican rice, we always make extra that ends up another meal. Many weekends, we'll have huevos rancheros for brunch - and the extra refried beans, shredded cheese, salsa etc never goes to waste.

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigB08822 View Post
    As for being shocked by shells, what!? LOL! I love crunchy tacos. I also like soft tacos but around here it is very expensive to get tortillas. I never could figure out why but apparently it has something to do with having to make them fresh and somewhat locally and they cost more. I just can't make myself pay so much for tortillas when I prefer a crunchy taco anyway. Oh, and no beans for me, I need BEEF! I am from Texas, after all.
    I wonder why they're more expensive just one state over? Y'all must not have enough Mexicans Here in Houston a pretty big pack won't cost you more than $2. I also like crunchy tacos, but I like to fry them myself
    Smoke a ciggy and have some fun!!!

  11. #31

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    No one has more Mexicans than Houston, haha, not even Mexico! :p
    -Brian
    "Michelle would never be caught with sausage grease staining her Vera Wang." - rfisher

  12. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by Veronika View Post
    I've never gotten sick from Taco Bell, but I do sometimes avoid the beef. You can fake out beef, but chicken is chicken.
    Next time you get chicken, look at the lable. I bought some amish chicken a week ago and on the lable there was a few things added including water. No wonder the chicken shrinks.

  13. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigB08822 View Post
    I guess there is a huge difference in cooking for 1 or 2 and cooking for 3 or 4. The latter is almost always a better bargain but many times it is cheaper for my bf and I to eat out or get fast food. I know you can also take into account many thing to come up with cost but I was being very simple and simple talking about how much money was leaving my wallet at that time.
    It is not even close to cheaper to eat out. Even just for two people. You just have to plan how you are going to use what you buy and cook.

    Right now, there is a chicken in my roaster. A whole roughly 5 lb. chicken. It cost me $4.37. Tonight we will have it with fresh cauliflower ($2.99 for one head) and rice leftover from last night (Rice-a-Roni--99 cents for a box on sale).

    The rice was two meals. That means it cost 50 cents for this one. There is half a head of cauliflower left because half was used in soup previously. So it costs about $1.50 for this meal. We will eat the chicken tonight, leftovers tomorrow, then I will pick the rest of the bones and freeze the shredded chicken left to use for soup or tacos. The chicken will be used for three meals--so it is about $1.45 per meal.

    Tonight's dinner costs a grand total (not including some spices thrown in) of approximately $4.45 for two people.

    We ate out for breakfast today and had a buy one meal get one free coupon and it cost nearly $20 for the two of us (including tip). A fast food meal typically costs us between $8-10 for both of us--our dinner is half that.

  14. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by El Rey View Post
    You can get 2 tacos for .99 cents at Jack in the Box! I have no idea what's in them, but I love them!
    When I was really little, my sister took me to the newly opened Jack in the Box for my very first taco. I think I was six or seven and it was yummy. Our Jack in the Box closed a few years later, but when DH and I went to California a few years ago, he took me for tacos at JITB. They weren't the same, but it's the thought that counts.

  15. #35
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    I LOVE Taco Bell's chicken quesadillas. There is this spicy sauce on them that is yummy. And they have a cool quesadilla machine that makes the quesadilla all melty and toasty. It's the only thing I eat at Taco Bell and it is one of my guilty treats. I hope it has actual chicken inside.

  16. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jenny View Post
    Take a few moments and read this article - http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/04/health/04meat.html

    You may never eat ground meat again
    i stopped eating it when i was a little girl. working at chi chis certainly didnt change my mind on the subject.
    I feel like I'm in a dream. But it can't be a dream because there are no boy dancers!

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