• Serves: 4 complete meals; 1-1/2 cups per serving
  • Costs: Approximately $3.50 per serving; $14.00 to feed a family of 4


  • 1-1/2 cups elbow macaroni (measured dry)
  • 1 stalk celery (about 1/3 cup), diced
  • 1 small zucchini, ends discarded (about 3/4 cup), medium-diced, (optional)
  • Canola oil as needed
  • 1 medium-sized yellow onion, (about 3/4 cup), diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, (about 1 tablespoon), minced
  • 454 grams/1 pound lean ground beef or chicken
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon powdered onion salt
  • 284 ml/10 ounce can of condensed tomato soup
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 1/3 cup ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons freshly chopped parsley, or 1/2 teaspoon dried parsley flakes
  1. Cook the macaroni in salted boiling water. Cook, according to package directions, or until al dente. Drain, then set aside.

  1. Meanwhile, saute the celery and zucchini in oil in a large, deep skillet. Cook over a moderate heat for 5 minutes, or until the zucchini begins to brown. Add the onion and garlic. Cook for 3 minutes, or until the onion becomes translucent.

  1. Add the ground beef to the vegetables. Break the beef up small as you cook it. Season with salt, black pepper and onion salt. Cook for 6 to 8 minutes, or until all of the beef is no longer pink. Drain any pan juices.

  1. Stir the tomato soup, water, ketchup and macaroni with the beef and vegetables. Simmer, covered, over medium-low heat, for 12 to 15 minutes. Stir periodically. Toss with parsley.

Calories per serving: 362; fat: 15 g

Food writer: Carolyn Cashen

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