If you want to stretch your family food budget, one way is the "rubber chicken" method. I've been able to stretch one rotisserie chicken into 3+ meals for my family of four. Here's how we're doing it this week, using a $5 chicken.
Meal 1: Rotisserie chicken, peas, French bread
Meal 2: Chicken Alfredo with homemade white sauce*, steamed broccoli (peas for the husband who won't eat broccoli), and French bread for the kiddos
Meal 3: Chicken tacos with homemade guacamole and other toppings
Meal 4+: TBD - I'll be making homemade chicken stock from the remaining carcass and freezing it for use later.
Homemade white sauce is really SO simple to make! I honestly only did it from scratch tonight because I couldn't find a jar in the pantry, but this was so simple that I would just as soon make it from scratch next time - it's cheaper, I know exactly what's in it, and it tasted far, far better than store bought.
Here's how I threw it together on the fly-
3 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons AP flour
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon salt
⅛ teaspoon pepper
2 cups milk
⅓ cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add flour and whisk to make a roux.
- Stir in garlic powder, salt and pepper.
- Add milk and whisk to combine. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until milk thickens.
- Remove from heat and stir in Parmesan cheese until melted. Top your favorite pasta, add chopped cooked chicken if desired, and serve.
While you can definitely use heavier milk or even cream for an even richer sauce, my family didn't notice that I used 1% milk. One of my daughters even used her bread to mop up the last of it on her plate. Score!