Chipotle Powder Chili Tacos

Sooo I’m a cheap guy. I pinch pennies.  Twice. Compared to most people I know i get by spending a lot less and still have what I need and most of the things I want. Are there toys and tools and trips I would buy if money were plentiful? Sure – saving for someday I suppose.

The point is, I’m cheap.

One of my most effective areas for saving money is food. It’s not that I coupon the crap out of the checkout chick (or dood) to save cash, it’s how I shop and what I buy.  Some of my friends easily drop $800 or more per month – and they are single.

For example, for a small family, ground beef is a common staple. Who can afford to toss ribeyes on everyone’s plate? Burger meat was plentiful in my parent’s kitchen and it was used in all kinds of meals

Tacos were a once a week staple for us

Leftovers made for a hot lunch, a quick snack and sometimes another meal when we had “leftover night”.  There might be parts of 4 meals from the last week on the table to finish off and your plate looked like an abstract from Picaso.

So as a young bachelor I quickly did the math to see that $3.00 in meat, $0.59 in seasoning, a few tortillas and shredded cheese and you wouldn’t starve before payday.  I learned to (literally) spice things up to prevent meal boredom and over the years I have learned that the best modification to OEP taco seasoning is the smokey kick that a little powdered chipotle brings.

Chipotle is a jalapeno left to ripened that is then dried and smoked. The heat is low and warm and the hint of smoke really jazzes up regular taco meat (which makes quick/easy quesadillas and many other meals besides tacos!).  My favorite source for chipotle powder is Penderys’s spices from Ft Worth.  You can also purchase via the website if you are unlucky to live too far to visit the retail store (which smells fabulous year round).  Highly recommended!  www.penderys.com