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Can You Dine on $4.50 a Day?

Can You Dine on $4.50 a Day?

The average person receiving SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance program) benefits is allotted $4.50 daily for food. That works out to about $1.50 per meal. Could you get by on that?

A quick tour of greatlist.com’s “44 Foods Under $1” shows you could make up a meal of one banana, one cup of rice, one-half cup of broccoli, and one egg and spend $1.53. (This is completely unscientific on our part, although greatlist’s posts are fact-checked, cited, and expert approved.)

How about a steady diet of this? Hope you’re not looking forward to an apple, pear or some grapes, because that will blow the budget. Sure, you could swap out the broccoli for beans or lentils, and then be able to afford some tofu. And, you could cut a few corners and save, but honestly, garlic and onions are not an entrée. There’s also no room in the budget for spices, cooking oil, milk, bread or other staples.

If you’d like to explore this topic more, check out the CT Food Bank’s SNAP Challenge, which dares you to conform to this food budget and see how well you do.