Cover Image: Easy Frugal Cookbook

Easy Frugal Cookbook

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

This cookbook had a lot to offer a newbie cook. It provides basic, simple recipes that are well organized and nicely photographed so you know what the dish should look like when you are done. It provides some good advice on meal planning, shopping, and establishing a pantry. There are a few sheet pan meals in the book which are good basic, easy meals for fledgling cooks. It would be nice to have this section expanded a bit more and to explain a formula or overall plan to prepare them. However, this book has some old favorites and new food preparation ideas that will tempt folks who are used to eating meals out or ordering take-out to prepare some of their meals at home.
Was this review helpful?
Thrifty, not cheap. That's my motto. I hate having to break the bank to put together a meal. But who wants to skimp on flavor? Not me! This cookbook has plenty of ideas for flavorful and affordable meals that everyone will love.
Was this review helpful?
OMG - the recipes in this cookbook are amazingly good and super easy to follow. The helpful budget tricks at the end of each recipe are a huge bonus. It seems like our grocery bill is consistently getting higher each month so to be able to still eat satisfying meals and save money is a definite win. Plus, there is such a nice variety of meals to keep from getting decision fatigue over what's for dinner. Just flip open the book and it's that easy.
Was this review helpful?
Because of Covid 19, everyone, it seems, is struggling to make ends meet. That’s why Sarah Walker Caron’s Easy Frugal Cookbook: 100 Satisfying Recipes That Won't Break the Bank is so timely. Almost everyone wants to eat well, and feed their families well, but it’s necessary nowadays to save a money whenever possible. This cookbook is the perfect solution, since it is full of great recipes that are down-to-earth, easy, and appealing. These simple recipes are written in an easy-to-follow format, and they call for ingredients that are readily available at regular grocery stores. Her notes at the beginning of most of the recipes are helpful, especially when trying to cook for children because she notes which ones are kid-friendly. There are also notes that indicate which recipes are vegetarian, gluten free, dairy free, etc., for those who are on special diets. There are also dollar signs indicating whether the dish is cheap, really cheap, or really, really cheap. 

There are plenty of choices for quick dinners, including soups, salads, sheet pan dinners, grilled and baked main dishes, and a few mouthwatering desserts. The recipes made so far from the book (Hoisin Beef Skewers with Gingery Red Cabbage Slaw and Sheet Pan Garlic Salmon with Roasted Snap Peas, although the queue is getting longer) have turned out perfectly. Any cookbook can contain lots of recipes, but few contain recipes that real people actually want to make. The recipes here are the latter. 

The one drawback to this cookbook is that there is only a photograph at the beginning of each chapter – no more – so there is no way to really know what the finished dishes will look like. Although most want pictures, the recipes are good enough that this cookbook will still make a good addition to anyone’s cookbook collection.

Special thanks to NetGalley for supplying a review copy of this book.
Was this review helpful?
This book will be a lifesaver for many busy cooks on a budget, or those who have better things to do than waste time and money. Ms. Caron makes many helpful suggestions and offers tasty, simple meal-time solutions. I can't wait to try her Crispy Coconut Drumsticks.
Was this review helpful?
I received an arc of this title from NetGalley for an honest review. I'm looking forward to getting a copy of this as I live by myself and get sick of leftovers quickly. Nice recipes and easy to use.
Was this review helpful?
Budget-friendly recipes – check.  Tasty, nutritious, and family-friendly – check.  Sarah Walker Caron’s new book, Easy Frugal Cookbook, is filled with recipes that won’t break the bank and will provide inspiration for a variety of appetites.  The recipes are easy to follow, the ingredients are often found in most home pantries, and the format is appealing.  The author also provides tips to save expenses and there are suggestions for shopping that will save the reader time as well as money.

The cookbook is divided by types of meals, such as breakfast, sandwiches, beef & pork, sides & snacks, and so on. There is even a section of main dishes for vegan and vegetarian meals.   All in all, it is quite comprehensive with a lot of variety, so there will be recipes that will appeal to even the pickiest eater. 

Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for providing a copy of this book for review.
Was this review helpful?
Easy Frugal Cookbook is exactly what it sounds like. With simple, easy to follow recipes, you will have no problem slashing your budget down a bit. I really like the inclusion of non-dairy, nut free, vegetarian and vegan recipes. The budget tricks I found helpful and the author also makes substitution recommendations if something is too pricey. Overall, a really great option for those looking for some easy recipes that are budget friendly.
Was this review helpful?
Are the recipes easy? Yes. Are the recipes healthy? Yes. Are the recipes frugal? Not so much. One of the items the author recommends keeping on hand is shrimp - now I know prices vary depending on where you live and what is local...but I'm thinking shrimp isn't a very frugal purchase for most people and I felt this way about other ingredients she suggested. The author also categorized the meals as under $5, $10 or $15. For most families, meals between $10-15 are not considered frugal (all of her recipes served 4). 

There was also a very large section on vegan/vegetarian recipes because removing meat from your diet is a frugal as well as environmentally sustainable move but for most, families are looking for traditional sources of protein. I would have loved to have seen more recipes with ground turkey/chicken, tuna, lean ground beef,etc. 

This cookbook is a good start but I don't get the sense that the author is much of an expert. I would have loved to have seen more recipes, more traditional sources of protein and more detailed information about buying in bulk, meal prepping and freezing and what healthy/frugal ingredients can make meals stretch further.
Was this review helpful?
Easy Frugal Cookbook: 100 Satisfying Recipes That Won't Break the Bank by Sarah Walker Caron aims to give readers the ability to make hearty meals that are tasty, budget-friendly, and nutritious. Recipes include dishes like Crispy Coconut Drumsticks or Open-Face Turkey Sandwiches for everyone in the house for just $5. All it takes is the right recipe, a few tricks, and a little planning to make the most of your food budget. The cookbook offers budget tricks and tips to lower the cost of ingredients even further.

Easy Frugal Cookbook is a book that offered something very much needed, ideas for keeping your family fed for less money than you might expect. The recipes are easy to follow, practical, and include ingredients that are common and generally easy to get. I did find it to be very simple, and as someone that grew up in a very frugal home as a child and still of the same mentality, a little condescending. However, that could just be because of my mindset when reading and the fact that very little of the book was new to me. I think this book would be most helpful for readers that are just getting started in their adult lives, or those that have never really thought about cooking or a budget before. Some of the recipes gave me ideas, but for me including recipes like scrambled eggs, sandwiches, and wraps was a bit basic- although I know there people that need instruction for the things I no longer need to think about.

Easy Frugal Cookbook is a cookbook for those just starting out cooking and thinking about budgeting. This might be a good gift to those striking out as lone adults for the first time or adding members to their household and needing to readjust the budget.
Was this review helpful?
This here has everything that it promises, and much more. Not only are all the recipes presented easily made from ingredients that can be simply obtained from most grocery stores without hurting one’s bank account, but there is a wonderful amount of variety and creativity to all these various dishes and treats as well, with something for everyone. I only needed a few minutes skimming the chapters before I found myself with several new items on my to-cook itinerary, and I have little doubt that I will find these affordable meals quite tasty when I am able to give them a try in my kitchen.
Was this review helpful?
This cookbook provides a wide variety of budget-friendly meals, including dairy and nut-free options, as well as vegan and vegetarian. The recipes also include dollar signs to distinguish the price of the ingredients.
Was this review helpful?
Excellent frugal tip book! Easy and fun filled recipes with budget friendly tips! Author has a endeavor to help people eat well while living with a frugal budget. In these COVID times a frugal book may help people save money needed for other things.

   What did I like? Frugal doesn’t mean you have to live off ramen since COVID seems to have depleted the stores of the large amounts it usually has. Some people may just be looking to cut costs since the times are uncertain and food has shown signs of scarcity. This author does a decent job of showing you where to cut costs, and how to make some delicious recipes without breaking the bank.

   Would I recommend or buy? I loved some of the budget tricks even though I’m not living on a budget but I should be. Grocery store costs have soared given the pandemic and scarcity of certain foods. Every penny counts. If your looking for a food book and tips on a budget then this is a good go to book. I enjoyed it.

   I received a copy to read and offer an opinion. I enjoyed the book!
Was this review helpful?
I am confused by the target audience of this book. Is is for foodies who would make things like Warm Brussels Sprouts Salad with Pear and Red Onion or to a basic beginner cook who will make the Grilled Ham and Cheese with Tomato Sandwich or Deli Salad? My guess that this is marketed towards beginner cooks since most of the ingredients called for are bought, premade from the store.  

Also some of the recipes are confusing. For example, the recipe for Italian Sausage Sandwiches with apple and red cabbage slaw. It calls for 1 lb of Italian sausage. It doesn't specify what kind. If you read the blurb by the author she talks about sneaking pieces of sausage from the pan and it makes you think of smoked sausage that comes packaged in the shape of a horse shoe that needs to be cut up. If you only read the ingredient list you think of bulk, ground sausage. And if you read the directions, you then realize the author could be talking about sausage links that are similar to brats. I even went as far as posting the recipe on my recipe review site on Facebook. I blurred out all the ingredients and instructions pertaining to the slaw so I could try and protect the copyright. I asked them what kind of sausage they thought the recipe called for. Many said they thought it was asking for ground sausage until they read the instructions and then realized it was probably link sausage. A few thought the same as me that it was the sausage that came in horseshoe form that you cut up based on the authors blurb. A few wondered if it was supposed to be smoked, sweet, or hot Italian sausage. 

There are a few recipes that I am eager to try, but others I won't even waste my time on since I'm more of a cook from scratch type person.  I will update my review when I make more of the recipes. As of right now, I'd only rate it 2 stars.
Was this review helpful?
The Easy Frugal Cookbook by Sarah Waker Caron is a well-written easy-to-read cookbook written by a journalist and a mother who needed to feed her family while living on a budget. Caron's book is an excellent cookbook as her recipes include symbols that show the recipe cost ($ or $$ for example) and include recipe nutritional information. Caron includes food storage information, healthy eating tips, and recommended kitchen tools to have to promote budget cooking. 

Some of the recipes you'll find include:

Roasted Potatoes and Pepper with Scrambled Egg
Chicken Tortellini Salad with Roasted Red Pepper Dressing
Barbecue Roast Beef Wraps
Sheet Pan Garlic Salmon with Roasted Snap Peas
Pork Tenderloin with Roasted Red Onion and Grapes
Country-Fried Steak and Onions
Garlic-Sesame Green Beans
Easy Chocolate-Coconut Pudding
Easy Marinara Sauce


Review written after downloading a galley from NetGalley.
Was this review helpful?
A wonderful cookbook that brings back comfort food! It’s pretty basic yet most will find it very convenient that these recipes are all in one book. Loads of great advice that will serve those new to cooking and on a tight budget, who don’t have extra cash (or room) to purchase kitchen gadgets. Also great for most seniors who have to live more frugally now that they’ve retired. Appreciate the calorie count, fiber, etc. which helps when planning meals for those with diet restrictions.
Received a free copy from NetGalley and am voluntarily leaving my review.
Was this review helpful?
"I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own."
This cookbook fulfilled it's title, providing both easy and frugal recipes. It also had good pointers on substitutions and purchasing tips. I even managed to find a few recipes to try with my ultra picky eaters, and this is truly a feat.
Was this review helpful?
Great cookbook with some nice and easy to make recipes. I love that these recipes are all budget friendly (from $5 to $15). The ingredients are easy to get, the cooking time is mostly  about 30 min (there are some slow cook recipes that takes up to 4h though). The budget trick tips are awesome! I received a free digital copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for my honest review
Was this review helpful?
The Easy Frugal Cookbook is a great cookbook for anyone on a budget.  It is broken down into numerous chapters such as slashing the grocery bill, breakfast, soups and salads, sandwiches and wraps, vegetarian and vegan, poultry and seafood, beef and pork, sides and snacks, desserts, and condiments, sauces, and dressings.  

I absolutely loved the condiments, sauces, and dressings section as I feel this is often overlooked in other cookbooks, but I can be essential in making your dish a success.  The book also contains money symbols that will tell you how much it costs to make the recipe.  Living in New Jersey, I know things tend to be a bit more expensive, but it still served as an excellent guide to which meals will be cheaper.  Each recipe has a budget trick which is super helpful for substituting items you might have on hand.  

Overall I loved this cookbook.  I wish there were more pictures of the recipes as I tend to be a visual eater, but helpful to anyone who might be worried about money and needing it to stretch along with anyone looking for a new cheap recipe to try.  (Because who wants to buy expensive ingredients to find out you hate the meal)
Was this review helpful?
This is more than just a cookbook, it's also a guidebook filled with tips on how to save money on groceries. The money saving tips were very helpful. And there was a wide variety of interesting recipes in the book. I tried several of the recipes and they were delicious.
Was this review helpful?