Here’s a site that has cheap recipes.
Buy no sodium black beans. Goya sells them, also Walmart has house brand low sodium canned black beans. There’s a big difference between low sodium and no sodium. You can add them to eggs, make tacos or add them to soup to stretch it and add protein.
To make basic soup stock, 1 yellow onion, garlic cloves, chopped carrots (about 3-4 large, or a small bag of baby carrots), a bunch of celery, about 1 tsp salt and pepper. If you don’t want to use salt, you can skip it. If you’re using the extra large stock pot, it’s about a half gallon of water. You can also add dried parsley to taste. Once you have your basic stock, you can do different things with it.
Want to make chicken soup, put a whole chicken or chicken pieces in, including guts, and some turmeric. You can put egg noodles in at the end.
Want to make Mexican soup, instead of noodles, add black beans and chili powder or cumin and top with chips and salsa.
Want vegetable soup, add the onions, garlic and diced potatoes first. Then as it’s cooking, add the other basic stock ingredients. As you’re cooking, add fresh or frozen green beans, or black beans or garbanzo beans. Put frozen peas and fresh or frozen corn in the last five or ten minutes when it’s boiling. Don’t overcook them.
If you want a tomato stock, use the basic stock recipe and add three small cans of tomato paste and two cans no salt stewed tomatoes. That’s a good stock for vegetable soup. Add Italian seasoning.
If you’re sick or you want a mild soup, mushrooms are good for adding to chicken soup stock. Add finely diced fresh ginger.
If you want a hearty potato soup, basic stock plus diced potatoes. Chop and mash some of them up pretty small after they’ve been cooking for a while, you get a nice creamy broth.
Lentil soup: basic stock plus dry lentils. I’ve added sweet potatoes to that sometimes. You can use a tomato base for lentil soup. Or try some mild curry powder if you like it.
Spices: go to the Mexican section of the market where they’re a lot cheaper. But put them in something airtight. Glass is better. Not above the stove or in the bright light, keep them in the dark. You can buy very small canning jars to hold spices at Walmart or other stores. If you put them all together in their cellophane packets they will smell really strongly like each other.
If you have a Costco or Sam’s Club card, they are drastically cheaper there if you don’t mind getting a lot. For spices you don’t use much, get a small size. Big Lots or Tuesday Morning have them at a good price.
If you are diabetic or on a low salt diet, don’t add salt while cooking. Add it at the very end from a shaker at the table. Cooking makes salt seem to disappear. Adding it at the end makes you taste it.