5 Quick and Cost-Friendly Meals Military Families Will Love

Published: October 4, 2022

According to the 2020 Military Family Lifestyle Survey, more than 10% of military family respondents reported having difficulty putting food on the table, citing lack of time and money as their top challenges when it comes to feeding their families. 

That’s one reason why we’re committed to making food insecurity a thing of the past at Blue Star Families. The time is now to rally around military and Veteran families and deliver military and civilian resources to those in need, empowering them to thrive. Those resources include quick and cost-friendly meal options that taste top dollar. 

Here’s a list featuring some of our favorites to consider. There’s a good chance you’ll find something the entire family will enjoy eating!

1. Overnight Oats (via Cookie + Kate)

Overnight oats are the perfect option for when you’re short on time (or just don’t feel up to cooking!). 

What you’ll need:

  • ⅓ c. steel-cut oats
  • ½ c. milk of your choice
  • ½ c. sliced berries or other fruit of your choice
  • ¼ tsp. Cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice (optional)
  • 1 tbsp. chia seeds (or flaxseeds)
  • 1 tbsp. peanut butter
  • ½ tsp. vanilla extract

How to make it: 

  1. Combine all liquid ingredients and spice(s) in a container with a lid (or jar).
  2. Top with preferred fruit (as long as it stores well; avoid apples or bananas until the morning of).
  3. Place in the fridge before heading off to bed (as long as the oats can chill in the fridge for at least 4 hours). 

It’s as easy as that! You’ll wake up to a delicious, on-the-go-friendly breakfast. 

2. So-Easy Skillet Frittata (via My Food and Family)

This skillet frittata recipe is a great way to create a delicious breakfast or brunch without breaking the bank. 

What you’ll need:

  • 6 eggs
  • ½ c. (1/2 of 8 oz. tub) cream cheese
  • ½ c. chopped red bell pepper
  • ½ c. chopped green bell pepper
  • 6 slices cooked Oscar Mayer bacon, crumbled
  • 1 c. Kraft Mexican Style Four Cheese Blend Shredded Cheese, divided
  • 3 tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro

How to make it:

  1. Heat oven to 400ºF.
  2. Beat eggs and cream cheese with whisk until blended; set aside. Cook and stir peppers in a 10-inch ovenproof skillet sprayed with cooking spray for 2 minutes, or until crisp-tender.
  3. Add bacon, ¾ cup shredded cheese, and cilantro to cream cheese mixture; stir until blended. Add to ingredients in skillet; stir. Cover; cook on low heat for 6 to 8 minutes, or until egg mixture is almost set in the center. Remove the lid. Place the skillet in the oven.
  4. Bake for 5 minutes, or until the center of the frittata is set. Remove from the oven. Top with remaining shredded cheese; cover with lid. Let stand for 2 minutes. Loosen frittata from side of skillet with spatula; slide onto plate. Cut into wedges to serve.

3. Creamy Couscous Pudding (via MyRecipes)

This quick and easy pudding recipe is satisfying, yet low in calories. You can customize the fruit flavors to your liking, or add a dash of cinnamon for a touch of flavor. 

What you’ll need:

  • ⅔ c. water
  • ½ c. uncooked couscous
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 3 c. fat-free milk 
  • ¼ c. packed brown sugar
  • 1 large egg 
  • ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  • 4 tsp. maple syrup

How to make it:

  1. Bring ⅔ cup water to a boil; stir in couscous and salt. 
  2. Remove from heat; cover and let stand for 5 minutes. Add milk and sugar; bring to a boil.
  3. Reduce heat to medium-low; stir until mixture is slightly thick. 
  4. Transfer to a bowl; whisk in egg. 
  5. Return to saucepan; cook, stirring frequently, until creamy (about 5 minutes). 
  6. Transfer to a clean bowl, and stir in vanilla. 
  7. Let pudding cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally. Spoon into 4 bowls, and chill, loosely covered, for at least 1 hour. Drizzle with maple syrup before serving.

4. Crockpot Chili 

This hearty slow cooker meal calls for simple ingredients you might already have on hand. Plus, it doesn’t require you to use too much electricity, making getting dinner on the table as simple and affordable as possible. 

What you’ll need:

  • 1 can crushed tomatoes or tomato sauce
  • 2 cans of beans (preferably both red kidney beans)
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • 1⁄2 tsp. pepper
  • 1 onion finely, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 bay leaf

Combine any protein (ground beef, chicken, pork) with black beans or kidney beans in your crockpot, and throw in some seasoning (paprika, chili powder) and remaining ingredients. Cook on a low setting all day while you continue going about your to-dos. 

5. Caprese Baked Potato

Packed with the nutrients you need to fuel your day, this recipe is easy to make, and it tastes delicious. 

To prepare, simply bake two medium potatoes in the oven for an hour at 350 degrees. Once they’re done, slice them in half lengthwise. Then, add a layer of mozzarella cheese on top of each potato, followed by tomatoes, basil leaves, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Bake until the cheese melts before serving. Not only will your family love this meal, but the fact that it can be served in minutes means everyone will enjoy filling up quickly without sacrificing time.

Give these meals a try, or share your favorite recipes on our Facebook page. In the meantime, we’ll continue working hard to find more ways to support military families facing food insecurity. 


By: Marla Bautista

Posted In: