People are often under the misconception that they have to spend a lot of money to add big flavor to their meals. While truffle oil and saffron do add a delicious flavor to many meals, it is not necessary to spend that much money on your everyday meals. But, that also doesn’t mean that your everyday meals have to be bland and boring either. There are hundreds of ways to add big flavor, while still using cheap ingredients.
Cheap Ingredients That Add Big Flavor #1: Ranch Dressing
Whether you use dry ranch dressing packets or use a pre-made ranch dressing, this cheap ingredient does add big flavor. You can use ranch dressing to add flavor to chicken, potatoes, bread, and so much more. You can even use ranch dressing in place of pizza sauce to create a gourmet pizza. A large bottle of name brand dressing can be purchased for around $3.
Cheap Ingredients That Add Big Flavor #2: Cream of Chicken Soup
Cream of chicken soup has been adding big flavor since the 1950s. This cheap ingredient has came a long way and now comes in low-fat and low-sodium versions. This is a wonderful way to add big flavor to chicken and, of course, casseroles. This cheap ingredient can usually be purchased for around $1.
Cheap Ingredients That Add Big Flavor #3: Sea Salt
I used to think that I hated salt, but actually I just hate table salt. The after taste that the iodine leaves is unbearable for my taste buds. Luckily, I have found other salts. Sea salt is a cheap ingredient that adds big flavor to anything you would add salt to. McCormick offers small grinders filled with sea salt for under $2. If you want a cheaper ingredient than that, use kosher salt. Kosher salt is around $1 for a huge box.
Cheap Ingredients That Add Big Flavor #4: Fresh Cracked Pepper
Fresh cracked pepper is another cheap ingredient that adds big flavor. When you use fresh cracked pepper, as opposed to pre-ground pepper, you will get a stronger flavor. This is because the flavor is locked in the peppercorns until they are ground. Once ground, pepper, and other spices, will quickly lose their big flavor. You can also find McCormick grinders filled with peppercorns for under $2.
Cheap Ingredients That Add Big Flavor #5: Butter
Butter may be more expensive than margarine, but it’s still a cheap ingredient. You will usually pay around $3 for a pound of butter, which will usually last around a week. Butter adds big flavor simply by being creamy. Margarines are usually made with oils, which lack that creamy texture that only real butter has. Plus, nothing works better in baked goods.
Cheap Ingredients That Add Big Flavor #6: Citrus Juice
Another cheap ingredient that adds big flavor is citrus juice. Whether you use limes, oranges, or even lemons you can rest assured that your dishes will taste amazing. Citrus juices are also a wonderful way to add a tropical taste. The next time you make chicken, try adding lime juice along with your spices. In the summer you will always be able to find these ingredients for 3 (or more) for $1.
Cheap Ingredients That Add Big Flavor #7: Italian Dressing
Whether you’re grilling steak or chicken, Italian dressing is a cheap ingredient that will add big flavor to your meal. Costing around $3 for a large bottle, Italian dressing is filled with delicious spices and oil creating a concoction that is flavorful and healthy. The next time you cookout, try marinating your meat in Italian dressing. You will be amazed by the big flavor.
Cheap Ingredients That Add Big Flavor #8: Spices
You can find several spices for under $1. Garlic powder, cayenne pepper, Cajun seasoning, and onion powder and wonderful spices to start out with, but there are tons of spices to choose from. Also look for seasoning blends that are salt free. These add big flavor while still being healthy.