Food Stamps


Happy Friday, and welcome back to our weekly series on $5 family dinners, the place where we show you how to feed a family of four for $5 or less. As always, our only criteria are that the meal is cheap, tasty, and filling.

The Meal: Quinoa Chili

Quinoa is a grain crop with edible seeds, and one of the healthiest things you can put in your body. It has a ton of protein in it, a large amount of essential amino acids, and an excellent source of dietary fiber, phosphorous, magnesium and iron. Plus, it’s combined with chili, one of the heartiest meals you can make.

What You’ll Need


  • 2 cans of beans: Kidney beans are a common choice, but you can use whichever kind of beans you like best.
  • 2 teaspoons oil: Olive oil is the healthiest option, but it doesn’t make a huge difference.
  • 1 onion: Buy a medium-sized one, and chop it into fairly small pieces.
  • 1 green pepper: Chop it into whatever sized chunks you like best.
  • 1 can tomato sauce (two cups): Get the plain one because you’ll be adding plenty of flavors later on.
  • 2/3 cup quinoa: Rinse it in warm water and drain thoroughly.
  • 1 cup of frozen corn
  • 2 cloves of garlic: Peel the skin off, slice the tips off, crush it with the blade of your knife, and chop it finely.
  • 2 teaspoons of salt
  • 2 teaspoons of cumin
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 1 cup of water

    What You’ll Need to Do


  • Get a skillet, turn the element onto medium heat, and heat the oil in it.
  • Sauté the onions until they’re clear, and then add in the salt, garlic, cumin, cinnamon, oregano, cayenne pepper and green pepper. Sauté all of this for 5 to 10 minutes, or however tender or crunchy you want the green peppers to be.
  • Next is the quinoa, and you’ll want to make sure everything’s mixed up well.
  • Add in the corn, tomato sauce and water, turn the heat down to low, cover (with the lid tilted to allow a bit of steam to escape, and let it simmer for about 20 minutes.
  • Once that’s doing well, you can go ahead and add the beans. The simmering’s not done yet, as you’ll need to be patient for another 15 minutes or so.
  • You’re on the last step now, as the quinoa chili is just about done. All that’s left is to shred some cheese over top of it, add sour cream, or anything else that you usually have with chili.

    Bon appétit!