Cheap food

  • Thread starter haxtor21
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  • #1
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What would be the cheapest and healthiest food one could eat everyday? What kind of diet would be the cheapest and healthiest to survive on without any repercussions?

Ramen noodles, white tuna, brown rice, ... ?
Buffets ?

Suggestions.
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
18,633
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I'll add an apple to the list. Not many calories, but you can get a Macintosh apple by me for like 40 cents.
 
  • #3
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I'll add an apple to the list. Not many calories, but you can get a Macintosh apple by me for like 40 cents.

http://www.veryfunnycats.info/wp-content/uploads/2007/02/funnycatsgroup3.jpg
 
  • #4
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Bananas are about the closest you can get to a single food that will keep you alive for a long time.

Whatever you go for though, you'll suffer some kind of malnutrition, no natural food supplies everything you need. In the 1800s explorers were sometimes found dead of starvation while surrounded by skinned rabbits - however much they ate they weren't getting enough of the fat soluble nutrients.

If you're allowed a few different foodstuffs, then rice, lentils and fresh veg of some description are about as basic as you can get away with for a prolonged period.
 
  • #5
1,565
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Frozen vegetables are a good way to go too. You can often buy a pound of mixed oriental or persian vegetables for a little over a buck a pound.
 
  • #6
Siv
Gold Member
89
5
Eggs. They are almost a complete food, except for Vitamin C.
The white is the most bio available protein and the yolk is a wonder store of nutrients.
 
  • #7
2,745
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I think people should tailor responses to someone living out of their car. So frozen is out.

Vitamin pills would be your best bet to cover as much ground as possible, but so far as nutrition goes, rice is a good start.

(Based on a previous thread by the OP)
 
  • #8
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I would suggest fresh produce, both veggies and fruits. Farmer's market do sell them fairly inexpensive, and small groceries will too. We have a local grocery that has a good selection at good prices, and that is where my spouse and I get our produce almost exclusively.

I think people should tailor responses to someone living out of their car. So frozen is out.

Vitamin pills would be your best bet to cover as much ground as possible, but so far as nutrition goes, rice is a good start.

(Based on a previous thread by the OP)

Looked at your other thread haxtor21

Look at getting sternos, they are fairly cheap, and walmart/meijer should carry them in the camping or kitchenwares. They're commonly used to heat food that's being served, but I've used them camping as well. They're good as heat source, and while you can't really cook say a steak with it, you can boil water or heat canned soups with them. They'll burn for ~2 hours.

For actually cooking outdoors, portable propane burners for camping can be inexpensive. A single propane burner where the tank is the stand for the burner can be gotten for $20, and the tank will last 9 hours on low. Most can boil a quart of water in minutes. Both a sterno or propane stove are good enough to heat canned soups, sterno might cook eggs and pancakes. I still have some of the original gas tanks from my stove with fuel and they're years old. I've done over 300 days of camping, hiked 200 miles with them.

haxtor21, where abouts in Michigan are you? I also live in Michigan and might be able to give better suggestions knowing your whereabouts.

jarednjames; being he is in Michigan and its late October, keeping frozen food in a car won't be a problem in a 2-3 months. Actually keeping food from freezing might be a problem. Two winters ago -10 to -20F was common.
 
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  • #9
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I live in madison heights, north of Royal Oak. Thanks for the suggestions.

So then i would be able to do ramen noodles and rice in that thing. Correct?
 
  • #10
Dembadon
Gold Member
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Almonds are quite healthy and make a good snack. I'll sometimes put a small handful in some low-fat cottage cheese (which is also good for you).
 
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  • #11
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You are not far from my hometown, though its been over 10 years since I lived there, I can search around and ask people I know who still live around there.

Just read one of the sternos I have, and it says it maintains a constants heat output of 205F, to keep food above the FDA recommendations, but I recall a friend using one to cook dumplings he made while camping, though he used a wind shield to prevent the flames from being blown about.

I would still think cooking rice and noodles would work, but definitely heating soups.
 
  • #12
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Royal Oak Farmers Market, though given the season, might be closed.
Code:
http://maps.google.com/maps/place?cid=6262046906618935871&q=grocery&ved=0CIEBENkGMAg&sa=X&ei=BAS-TO2aHoTyMtjEzbMI


These are the other stoves I was mentioning, probably better for actual cooking. You'd be surprise how long one canister will last too, for number of meal preparation, most of the time I never had it on for more then 15 minutes.

Code:
[URL]http://www.walmart.com/ip/Century-Single-Burner-Stove/10966285[/URL]
[URL]http://www.walmart.com/ip/Coleman-1-Burner-Propane-Stove/871709
[/URL]

Do you have any experience in camping during the winter?
 
Last edited by a moderator:
  • #13
drizzle
Gold Member
379
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Dates fruit.
 
  • #14
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I live in madison heights, north of Royal Oak. Thanks for the suggestions.

So then i would be able to do ramen noodles and rice in that thing. Correct?

Just tried to boil water with the one I had. I put a lid on the small pot, and made a wind shield out of tin foil to place around the entire sterno and pot holder. Digital cooking temp probe never got above 210F and the water had some slight bubbling, but not a true boil. Took at least 45mins for this, and while it be good for heat source and heating soup, probably not for effective cooking.

I was trying to find a Scout Shop within Madison Heights, because honestly they'd probably have everything for you at decent prices, google wasn't showing one.
 
  • #15
turbo
Gold Member
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Is there an Associated Grocer's store in your area? Around here, the AG stores use bananas as loss-leaders to get older customers in the store. Bananas don't store that well, which ensures more frequent shopping by people who rely on them for cheap, healthy fruit. It's one way that these smaller stores can fight the supermarkets. Good deal if you like bananas.
 
  • #16
Dasani123
Water or o2, lol
 
  • #17
63
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i agree with fruits.
you should get some peanuts for proteins too if you don't mind raw peanuts (its not like I know too well about nutrients)
avoid ramen if you want to stay healthy. I would get corn as alternative to rice if you are just having it for carbs.

IMO those small sized fastfood food aren't bad if you have it once in a while (not everyday) without fries and drinks :P I.... don't know that's just me.

Get some multivitamins if you think you won't get a malnutrition
 
  • #18
Evo
Mentor
23,544
3,204
I live in madison heights, north of Royal Oak. Thanks for the suggestions.

So then i would be able to do ramen noodles and rice in that thing. Correct?
Haxtor what do you have for cooking? No kitchen? Do you have an electrical outlet? I need to know that before I can make food suggestions.
 
  • #19
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Was thinking that an electric kettle would be better, at least for just boiling water. Making raman should be fine, teas, powder soups and such. Could not cook in it, but be better for simply making hot or boiling water for foodstuff.
 
  • #20
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The situation depends. If I manage to get a night job and move in with a roommate i will have a electrical outlet, otherwise im gonna be in my car for a few weeks or so.

Will this device suck up a lot of energy from my car battery?

I have 0 camping experience. Nexam.
 
  • #21
1,105
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Pho or tacos. And I mean real tacos, not ones with cheese, sour cream, etc.
 
  • #22
Evo
Mentor
23,544
3,204
The situation depends. If I manage to get a night job and move in with a roommate i will have a electrical outlet, otherwise im gonna be in my car for a few weeks or so.

Will this device suck up a lot of energy from my car battery?

I have 0 camping experience. Nexam.
During power outages, I rigged up a wire mesh over a three wick candle and heated food that way.

If you have a few dollars, go to a hardware store, get a metal grate, two cement blocks or bricks, something to burn and a little steel cup or pot. This is really all you need if you have a place were you can cook over an open fire (sterno is an open fire).
 
  • #23
58
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The situation depends. If I manage to get a night job and move in with a roommate i will have a electrical outlet, otherwise im gonna be in my car for a few weeks or so.

Will this device suck up a lot of energy from my car battery?

I have 0 camping experience. Nexam.

I was thinking the fact you mentioned having access for showers at the gym, using an outlet shouldn't create too much problem. The electric kettles do heat water quick, the one I have is 120v 60Hz 1000w, but has no amp listed. Would fit nicely in a backpack or duffelbag. After showering while brushing teeth or such, plug it in and you should have boiling water in 5-10 minutes, pour into a cup of soup mix and got something hot as you walk out. In order to use in your car, you'll need an adapter.

I believe Madison Heights city parks are open to all Madison Heights residents. State parks are different and usually require an annual fee, but as most city parks have bbq grills, using them to cook with shouldn't be an issue. Collecting firewood shouldn't be either, but you cannot cut down trees, live or dead, only collect fallen branches.

Sleeping in your car in the winter will be a challenge, you're effectively outside even with the car's limited insulation. Staying warm is a priority, and you can't have the car running to heat it, potential carbon monoxide poisoning. Burning a candle or anything similar will eat the oxygen unless you leave a window somewhat open. I've camp outside in Michigan winter, and unless you know what to do, I would not recommend doing so. I'm sure anyone else here who has done something similar would agree.

The South Oakland Shelter may not to far from you, it has programs to assist homeless families and individuals, I think one offers a week supply of food. I don't know how the programs specifically work. It is in Royal Oak, I suggest checking them out.

Code:
http://www.southoaklandshelter.org/

The Salvation Army stores around here do sell used clothing, and they do a color tag special each week, where a color is 50% off and then come Saturday evening the same color items are $0.59 with some exceptions. Inexpensive winter clothing a possibility.
 
  • #24
142
1
What would be the cheapest and healthiest food one could eat everyday? What kind of diet would be the cheapest and healthiest to survive on without any repercussions?

Ramen noodles, white tuna, brown rice, ... ?
Buffets ?

Suggestions.

if you can afford the buffet, then yes, i think that is your best option. get most of your calories in one meal, and keep some non-perishables like saltines and peanut butter to snack on. bananas are also cheap with decent calories and will keep several days at a moderate temp.
 
  • #25
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Avocados are nature's super fruit. They contain protein, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, iron, some B vitamins,Vitamin A,Vitamin K as well as vitamin E, not to mention fat that your body needs as well. Then there is Omega-6 fatty acids and Omega-3.

Another cheap food is potatoes. You can get them for a few bucks for 5 pounds AND you can eat them raw. Just peel the potato and take a bite like you would an apple. It too has protein (about 7grams) Vitamin A, Vitamin C,Vitamin D,Vitamin E,Vitamin K,Thiamin,Riboflavin,Niacin,Vitamin B6, Folate, Iron,Magnesium,Potassium,Omega-3,Omega-6 and Calcium.
 

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