Someone Asked The Internet To Share Their Fav 'Poverty Meals' They Still Eat Today

If your family ever experienced financial woes while you were growing up, or they simply wanted to pinch some pennies here and there, then I'm sure some sort of quick, easy, and cheap meal comes to mind when you think about your childhood.

For me it was Kraft Mac & Cheese with hot dogs cut up in it, a "dish" I certainly still enjoy to this day, no matter what my financial situation.

A viral Reddit thread invited users to share their own so-called childhood "poverty meals" they still enjoy to this day, and the people of Reddit definitely delivered. Do any of these sound familiar?

What's your favorite cheap, childhood meal you still enjoy? Let us know!

"Fried egg with rice."

It really doesn't take much at all to make this meal, shared by user eldritch_candy — it's quite literally just cooked rice and a fried egg placed on top.

Simple, yet satisfying.

"Cinnamon sugar toast."

Although I've never personally had this user's go-to meal, I can't say I hate the idea of it. Buttered toast? Excellent. Cinnamon? Excellent. Put it all together and that meal must be...well, excellent.

Another user shared that their own child eats this for breakfast every morning and has lovingly dubbed it, "sprinkle toast".


Many users shared that their "poverty meals" simply consisted of one ingredient: beans.

"I remember a big pot of beans living in the fridge," this person wrote. "Hungry? Get some beans. Don't like what was for dinner? Get some beans. Upset stomach? Beans."

"Butter noodles."

After this user admitted their love for the buttery dish, others chimed in to agree, with some revealing just a few minor additions their own versions featured, like black pepper or even a can of stewed tomatoes.

As user SpazzJazz88 wrote, "If you were lucky to have parm and garlic, then you're eating good."

"Steak fingers."

As user markalage explained,

"Grew up poor, but my mom sure knew how to stretch a dollar. She would make steak fingers out of the cheapest cuts she could find. Tenderize, fry them up make gravy out of the drippings and serve with mashed potatoes."

They also added that they made this very same meal for their own kids, and now those kids make it for their kids, too.

“Ghetto Mac."

Quite simply, "Ghetto Mac", as this user explained, is made up of Kraft Mac & Cheese, and whatever else could be found in the kitchen at the time: "Cheese, lunch meat, spam, spices, etc. No two meals were ever the same."

"Struggle nachos."

Sometimes you don't have all the fixings for "fancy" nachos, so instead you make do with what this user dubbed "struggle nachos", which basically consist of cheese slices melted on top of cheap tortilla chips.

"Now that I can afford it I’ll throw taco meat on top every now and again but still very much enjoy just the chips and cheese," they shared.

"English muffin pizza."

If you've never had an english muffin pizza then I'm sorry, but you're truly missing out. These little beauties are delicious and, as this user pointed out, "dirt cheap" to make.

"The pasta sauce is the most expensive part, and if you make it, and the English muffins at home, each mini pizza is like 30 cents."

"Bowl of cereal."

Many people agreed their easiest, cheapest meal was typically just a bowl of cereal and some milk. And now as adults, they still enjoy skipping the hot dishes in favor of a throwback to the old days of Cheerios swimming in milk.

"S*** on a shingle."

This particular meal consists of gravy poured over some toast.

While some users quibbled over whether the gravy was supposed to be sausage or corned beef, they all agreed the name is, indeed, "s*** on a shingle".


As user MistyMeenor shared, the quesadillas of their childhood consisted of a flour tortilla with "whatever cheese I had lying around, usually dollar packs of singles."

And that's it. No corn, no salsa, no meat, no nothing. Basic? Yes. Tasty? Also yes.