Pasta, cabagge and chorizo meatballs

I was reading the news this morning before writing this post and, oh man, it’s scary what’s going on in the world, isn’t it? Even though Main St hasn’t been hit as hard yet, I believe it is time to start buckling up for the rough ride ahead. However, I don’t think that means we need to eat boring and tasteless food. This is the time to put on our creative hats and start making delicious foods on a budget. That’s why I encourage you to check out and participate in Frugal Fridays.

The premise of this Jerry‘s great idea is to cook dinner for a family of four for US $10.00. That might not look like a big budget, but once you start getting a hold of frugal living, you will be surprised how far your money can go without sacrificing taste, nutrition or creativity.

For this week’s entry I made chorizo ($2.49 lb) and ground turkey ($1.99 lb) meatballs that I fried and cooked with diced tomatoes ($0.99 can) and served over pasta ($0.99 package) cooked with cabbage ($0.47 lb) and broccoli ($1.94 lb). Not bad for a frugal dinner.

Chorizo meatballs and pasta
Makes enough for six servings

For this recipe you will need:

  • 1/2 lb chorizo
  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup cornmeal
  • 1 TBSP chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/4 small onion chopped
  • 1/4 cup cooked rice (optional)
  • Cooking oil
  • 2 cups diced tomatoes
  • 1 8-oz package of spaghetti
  • 1/2 small cabbage, shredded
  • 1 cup broccoli, chopped
  • basil, salt, fresh ground pepper and any other spice you like to add to your pasta.


  1. Cook pasta following the package instructions. Add cabbage about 7 minutes before you remove from heat and broccoli about 2 minutes before removing from heat. Drain, but save 1 cup of the water.
  2. Brown chorizo in a large heavy skillet and combine with ground turkey, eggs, cornmeal, fresh parsley, onion, rice (my mom used to add rice to the meatballs and they always tasted so good) and seasoning to taste in a large mixing bowl.
  3. Add some cooking oil to the same skillet where you browned the chorizo. Roll out meatballs as big as you want them and brown them.
  4. In a cooking pot add tomatoes and the water you saved from the pasta. Season if necessary. Add browned meatballs and cook for 8-10 minutes.
  5. Serve over pasta and top with queso fresco crumbs and enjoy.

Chorizo gave these meatballs a very disctintive flavor that wasn’t overwhelming. Cabbage and pasta are two ingredients that every frugal kitchen should always have, they are nutritious and always give a rich filling to any dish. What are your frugal dinners?

¡Buen provecho!

I am sending this post to the following food events. Please click on the badges to read more about guidelines to participate:

Frugal Fridays

Presto Pasta NIghts


  • I agree that things are heading down a bit, but I still think cooking is the best way to roll with the economic punches. I’ll sacrifice going out to eat to make sure I can still eat what I want at home.

    This dish is great because it shows just that. Power protein, veggies, and good carbs. With your recipes on my side, I’m never going hungry dude.

  • Looks great Ben! I must check out Frugal Fridays as I could do with some tips for budget meals that still taste good! :)

  • Looks great, I only wish chorizo was that cheap where I am, here it’s 5x the price!

  • How funy! My Frugal submission featured turkey and cabbage as well. Great minds…

    My Yummy Life

  • yup, definitely not bad… in fact, i think it’s a great meal… :)

  • omg this looks amazing!! Just added to my “must cook list” I lovee Chorizo and all the colors of this dish are soo pretty.

  • Que rico Ben! Si, everything seems to be falling! I hope there’s good news soon about this crisis!
    I like this event! Good idea 😀

  • I think we all need to start buckling down and eating more frugal dinners Ben. It is nice to splurge once in a while of course:D

  • Chorizo and turkey meatblls, how delicious. Something I never thought about. Great idea Ben. There is a place here in town that makes hamburgers with chorizo. I haven’t tried it but my daughter has and she says they’re very good. I’m going to try your idea with the chorizo meatballs. I too love Halloween, but Dia de Los Muertos is also fantastic. Can’t wait to make my sugar skulls.

  • In the community that we serve many people are going to bed hungry,,,this meal for them would be “an event”. I often have to remind myself how fortunate we are….for us buckling down means not to go out for a meal so often or eat less red meat, but for a large part of our society …they have no belt to tighten…

    …anyway this is not to make you feel guilty, your food looks amazing and yes, we all try our best to cut down, but still eat a nutritious meal….

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