Are you visiting in Nigeria and looking for ways to cut down expenses by sticking to a low budget meal? The key to achieving your goal would be to look for healthy foods that are versatile nutritious and can be made for $5 or less. Usually, with most of the staple items got from the local markets scattered around the country, you will be able to a variety of easy, inexpensive meals.
However, to make things easier, Jovago.com, Africa’s No.1 online hotel booking portal, has a list of five-dollar or less dinners, lunches or breakfast ideas that will help you feed yourself and maybe even a guest, delicious and nutritious meals that fit your budget.
Nigerian Jollof rice
‘Boring’ will never be a word to describe this popular Nigerian meal. Jollof rice is one of the most simple and the easy Nigerian foods to make. It is always a favorite option for the thrifty as it is not only delicious and nutritious, it comes together with ingredients that you already have. Also, it tastes good whether served hot or cold. To prepare this meal, you need: 1/2 Kg Chicken: costs about N300 ($1.20), 1 cup of rice: costs about N100 ($.50), Ground fresh tomatoes: costs about N50($.25) per tin, ground fresh pepper Onions, spices, groundnut oil, salt, cubes of Knorr/Maggi and dried crayfish: optional. The meal takes about 45 minutes to 1 hour to get cooked, depending on your cooking methods. The end product, however, will have you clamouring back for seconds. You definitely want to start with this meal if you are new to Nigerian foods.
Yet another simple meal, yam porridge will make a great main dish for midweek lunch. A staple food in Nigeria, it is quite popular in the western part of Nigeria and is known as Asaro or Ebe. Mainly yam cooked with few ingredients and little or no vegetable, the resulting dish contains some soupy liquid. Main Ingredient include White Puna yam: costs about N300 ($1.20)for a medium size tuber, Red palm Oil: costs about N200($1) for 50c, smoked mackerel fish : costs about N300 per whole fish($1.50), onion, ground crayfish, fresh green vegetable (eg pumpkin, parsley, scent leaf or green amaranth), habanero or chili Pepper & Salt (to taste), and of course, stock cubes. This meal is satisfying both taste- and budget-wise.
This meal is the perfect perfection as it is very easy to prepare and likely the cheapest soup in Nigeria. Also known as the Lady finger’s soup, or locally referred to as Ofe okwuru (ibo), Obe ila(Yoruba) or Miyan Kubewa(Hausa), this soup can be made chunky or smooth and eaten alone (if you are a weight watcher), or paired with Eba or pounded yam. To prepare this meal, you need the following ingredients: Okra (a medium size bowl full), Fluted Pumpkin leaves (optional), Stockfish, meat (beef, chicken, turkey, etc), dry fish or smoked fish(optional), stock cubes, palm oil, salt, ground crayfish and pepper to taste. You can get quantities of each of the main ingredient from the local market for as low as N100($.50) each, except for meat which you can get a ½ kilo from as low as N200 ($1). Throw this simple but satisfying meal together and your wallet will thank you.
Yam and Garden egg sauce
Get your dose of protein and fibre with yam and garden egg sauce. A great choice for a quick weeknight dinner, the meal is quick, easy and flavorful. For the sauce, you can make use of any type of garden egg available to you, including Aubergines. You will also need the following ingredients: Garden eggs, palm oil, onion, smoked mackerels, Habanero Pepper & Salt (to taste), ogiri okpei/ iru(optional). Like the Okro soup, you can get quantities of the main ingredients from the local market for as low as N100($.50).For the yam, you will need a tuber of yam which you will just have to peel, cut and boil separately with salt. The entire meal takes about 45 minutes to prepare. The perfect meal for weight watchers and a budget friendly meal option, some of the benefits of this mean include effective weight loss as well as lowering blood cholesterol and eye pressure in glaucoma.
This high-protein meal will have you salivating. One of the most popular dishes in Nigeria, Moi Moi is made from pureed beans. The process of making this meal is a bit complicated, but the end result is always a delight. Usually, a special kind of beans (Black eyed beans) is used for making beans pudding in Nigeria, but you can substitute with any other type of beans if you live outside Nigeria. Other ingredients include Onions, Red bell pepper (Tatashe), Scotch bonnet pepper (ata rodo), Ground crayfish, Palm oil, stock cubes (Maggi) and Salt. Purchasing all ingredients will cost less than $4 at the local market. Moi Moi can be eaten alone or paired with other meals such as Pap (akamu, Ogi) or soaked garri; or it can also be served as a side to such meals as fried rice e.t.c