Monday, January 16, 2012

Cheap Meal Monday: Cajun Shrimp Salad

Shrimp are small but mighty! They have a high nutrient density and plenty of protein in a small serving. Just 4 ounces of shrimp provides 23 grams of protein (almost half of your daily value!) in just 112 calories and less than a gram of fat. They are also a great source of selenium and vitamin B12 (see WHFoods). When served with other nutrient-packed foods like spinach, avocado, and tomatoes, you have yourself a powerful salad! This cajun shrimp salad is one of my favorites for lunch.

This recipe makes 1 serving and can be multiplied to make enough for more. Ingredients needed:

1 tbsp. coconut or olive oil
1 cup thawed small shrimp (pre-cooked)
1 tbsp. cajun seasoning (try Emeril's Bayou Blast)
1 ripe avocado
handful grape tomatoes
2-3 cups of spinach
1/4 lemon wedge or 1 tbsp. lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste

Heat oil over low heat in a medium saucepan. Thaw shrimp according to package directions if frozen. Add shrimp and cajun seasoning to saucepan and heat for about 5 minutes (shrimp should already be cooked). Meanwhile, cut open and chop the avocado to bite size pieces. You can also cut the grape tomatoes in half, if desired. Once shrimp are heated, mix together all ingredients in a large bowl and drizzle with lemon juice. Add salt and pepper to taste and serve!

I usually buy ingredients for this salad at the beginning of the week and then make it everyday for lunch. The following will give you about four servings:

1 medium package of frozen cooked small shrimp: $5.00
4 avocados: $4.72
1 small carton of grape tomatoes: $2.98
1 medium package of organic baby spinach: $3.38
1 lemon: $0.50

Bringing the total to $16.58 for four days of lunch or $4.14 per serving. (I didn't include the oil and spices because those are cupboard staples and can be reused for other meals). Now that's a cheap nutrient-packed meal!

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