tenDollar dinner for two.

Recently I made a dinner for my bestFriend and I for our movie night that cost less than $10.00.
It fed the both of us AND I had enough for lunch the next day.
I posted a photo of it up on instagram and got a lot of positive feedback along with a lot of people asking for the recipe, so I decided to just post it  up for everyone.

There’s no official name for this dish; it’s a bowtie pasta tossed in olive oil with basil, diced tomatoes, garlic, and sausage (which is optional if you go the veggie route–just as good btw). The prep is super easy, the cooking is super easy (you’re basically throwing everything in a pan and just mixing), and it requires very little time overall to make.

Pasta tossed in extra virgin olive oil w/ garlic, diced tomatos, basil, and sausage. Perfect dinner–perfect lunch.

Here are the ingredients (everything purchased from Publix):

[Everything marked with an asterisk are things that I already had at home.]
1. Box of bowtie pasta (Publix brand- $0.99)
2. 1 tomato ($1.50)
3. 1 pack of basil leaves ($1.99)
4. Hillshire spicy sausage ($3.39)
*5. Extra virgin olive oil
*6. minced garlic
*7. ground black pepper
*8. salt

My total cost= $8.86

Ingredients–missing: salt, galic, & sausage. We all know what those look like.

There is no specific recipe that I borrowed from I just learned to throw this together on my own according to my taste.
So I will try to structure this as best I can.

1. First cook half of the pasta from the box.
I  usually put 1 tablespoon of salt in the boiling water when I cook the pasta, it cooks the pasta with enough salt so that I don’t have to put excessive amount of salt into the actual food–the garlic, tomato, and basil leaves will do a majority of the flavoring + LESS sodium intake (which is always good).

2. While the pasta is cooking–

Dice the tomato into squares (or whatever shape that pleases you), chop up the basil leaves, and mince the garlic (if it isn’t already minced).

3. Slice up the sausage into thin slices (if you are adding sausage to your pasta–again it tastes just as good without).

4. Place tomatos, basil, garlic, and sausage to the side.

5. Add a little extra virgin oil (EVOO) to a pan (frying pan, wok, whatever you have) and put the heat on medium.
I use a wok so I just pour enough EVOO so it covers the bottom of the wok.

6. By this time your pasta should be fully cooked (~15-20 minutes). 
Drain the pasta and put it in the pan first. Stir the pasta until the majority of it is covered in EVOO.

7. Add minced garlic to the pasta and stir well. 
I have a jar of minced garlic that I bought from the Asian market so I usually just add 1 tablespoon from the jar.
But if you don’t have readily accesible–just chop up 1 clove of garlic and that should add plenty of flavor.
And if you don’t like garlic–don’t add it, it tastes just fine without.

8. Add the tomatos in with the pasta+garlic. 
I usually put in half of whatever I cut up.
This is to your personal taste so you can add the entire tomato if you want, it’ll just add that much more flavor.

9. Add the chopped basil leaves.
Again, I put in half of what I chop up.
If I use half of everything, I can actually make another full meal (same thing) with the other half.
Keep stirring everything to ensure that the pasta doesn’t stick to the pan.

10. Add ground black pepper.
I add 1 tablespoon and that makes it pretty spicy.
If you like less spicy, then add less.
If you don’t like spicy, then don’t add any pepper.

11. Lastly add the sausage.
Again, I add half of what I cut up for reasons mentioned in step 10.
And–if you aren’t adding sausage, you are done at step 10!
Stir everything well so you make sure that the sausage is completely cooked.

12. Stir everything for about 5 more minutes after all ingredients have been added.


Finished product.

In my experience this usually yields about 3 servings which is perfect for a 2 person dinner and lunch for 1 the next day 🙂

As I mentioned before, you should have half of everything (pasta, cut up tomatos, cut up basil leaves) left if you followed my recipe the way I make it.
With that I can make this same meal again…I’m the type of person that can eat the same thing twice in the same week.
So technically with these ingredients you can make this meal twice for two people or once for four.
Definitely a money saver if you ask me.
And as a side note: pinot grigio is one of my favorite wines to pair with pasta that has a garlic & EVOO base, so for all you wine lovers you should definitely try it.

I hope I was of some help to those of you who wanted this recipe in writing.
Happy eating until next time.


2 Comments to “tenDollar dinner for two.”

  1. this looks like sam’s! lol

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