Organic dinner for less than the price of a Pinkberry

IMG_3462Food price increases are felt everywhere, but especially when dining out.  In addition, to prices rising, you are getting smaller portions, which may not be the worst thing at some restaurants, I am blogging at you Macaroni Grill, Buca Di Bepo and Outback Steakhouse to name a very few.   Don’t forget the tax and tip.  When I do dine out, I patronize non-chain restaurants that use as much organic and local ingredients as possible.

The alternative is cooking at home.  So Monique and I decided to make an all organic meal for under $5 per person.

Shopping list (tax free for all non-prepared food):

  • Organic, free-range whole chicken 4.25 lb – $14.50
  • Organic pumpkin – $2.00
  • Organic quinoa – $1.00
  • Organic salad items – $4.50
  • Incidentals used (fresh herbs, spices, etc.) $1.50



  • Farmer’s market salad with red leaf lettuce, cucumber, carrots, celery, red peppers
  • Roasted pumpkin soup with ginger
  • Roasted whole chicken (brined in salt, sugar, soy sauce and water)
  • Quinoa

The party consisted of 5 adults and 1 child that ate about as much as the adults, but I will call it 5.5 people to spit the difference.  The cost per person was approximately $4.30, which is less than all of the Pinkberrys I have made.

Everything turned out tasty.  The ginger complimented the flavor of the pumpkin soup.  The brine really helped to keep the chicken so tender and flavorful even though GreenUp! Guy left it in a tad too long, I just couldn’t risk the salmonella poisoning of Monique’s child.

Share how do you keep the cost down when cooking organic.  Try a group organic dinner and see how low you can go in terms of per person price and share with our community.

– GreenUp! Guy



2 thoughts on “Organic dinner for less than the price of a Pinkberry

  1. Organic whole chicken was purchased at Ralphs. Pumpkin & salad fix ins purchased at Wed & Sat Santa Monica farmers markets. Quinoia purchased in bulk from Santa Monica Co-op.

    pumpkin soup recipe as follows:

    Sauté one large diced onion in 2 T olive oil. Add 2 T freshly grated ginger & 1 tsp coriander. Transfer to pot, add 4.5 cups water, drippings from roasted chicken & 4-5 cups fresh organic pumpkin. Bring to a boil & simmer until pumpkin is tender. Don’t forget to remove pumpkin skin before adding to liquid. Throw it all in a blender, puree & enjoy. You can also toast the pumpkin seeds to make a tasty pesto to top off the soup. Enjoy!

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