Tips for Making a Meal for Under $25

With a little planning, it's still possible to cook and eat your favorite foods, such as lobster, without breaking the bank.


When planning a meal, it's sometimes nice to let the cost be secondary. If you love to cook and eat, the occasional splurge on something just a little decadent can be almost a necessity.

And then, reality: Perhaps now is not the greatest time to splurge. Luckily, you don't necessarily have to. With some thoughtful planning, you can serve the likes of lobster and Gruyere to your family without breaking the bank.

Here are five easy tips for reigning in the cost of a meal so you can cook (and eat) what you want -- at least every now and then.

First tip: Mix it up ...