Diana dressed up cost-kind ingredients like potatoes and pasta, and used them in their entirety to cut down on food waste.
DOUBLE-DECKER SHEPHERD'S PIE
Cutting costs shouldn't come at the expense of taste. Use the pricier ingredients in this dish like chiles and scallions with a light touch -- a little goes a long way.
BOWTIES AND SPICY BROCCOLI RABE WITH CRUNCHY CRUMBS
Playing with texture is an inexpensive way to keep dishes from tasting boring and flat. Adding breadcrumbs or nuts to this recipe will help enrich plain pasta and give it extra depth.
STRETCH YOUR DOLLAR
Pick up these 99-cent grocery buys and use them in plenty of priceless ways.
Add whole leaves of parsley to a salad or use sprigs in soups and stews to enrich the flavor. Make:
Puree canned beans and use them to thicken soups or sauces. Fry them in extra-virgin olive oil with garlic for a savory spread. Make:
Roast or grill thinly sliced lemons and use them as a condiment with meat and poultry. Brighten heavy stews or sauces with their juice. Make:
Whisk evaporated milk into pan drippings for an instant sauce. Use it in soups to replace regular milk for extra creaminess. Make:
Thin tomato paste with water or stock and whisk into soups or stews. Mix it with butter and brush onto roasted meats. Make:
MAKE OVER LEFTOVERS
Follow Diana's tips to make the most of your meal.
Finely chop meats and vegetables and use in a frittata or omelet.
Turn salad into soup by adding to stock and bringing to a simmer.
Moisten casseroles by pouring in a little soup.
Reduce soups until thickened and saucy; serve over pasta.
Enrich soups and stews with leftover bones.
MORE TEST KITCHEN CHALLENGES
Still looking to solve your dinner dilemmas? See what else the test kitchen team's been up to.