Midwest Living: Seared Salmon and Roasted Veggies for $5 or Less

I USED to think that it was too expensive to eat healthy, clean meals.  While it can be pricey to eat clean food at times, so can running through the drive-thru and getting a sandwich, a medium fries, and a drink. Often, fast food can be MORE expensive!

AOL Finance (2013) shares this amazing thought, “In general, a meal costs $5 to $7 at a fast food restaurant, but the cost of cooking at home averages out to $1.50 to $3 per person. That’s a 40-79 percent savings for healthier, homemade food.” See more info here…

I wish I would have discovered the truth about clean eating back in 2013. Instead, I came to the realization through trial and error on my own part, and thankfully it was confirmed by others. In celebration of dispelling the myth that clean foods are more expensive, I am going to begin sharing ideas and recipes for clean meals for $5 or less (per serving) on a regular basis.

Here is one of my many favorites so far…

Seared Salmon with Roasted Asparagus and Red Potatoes

Prep time: approximately 35 minutes


I grew up with a strong dislike for fish in general, but the older I get, the more I like some fish selections. Salmon is a type of fish that I can’t seem to get enough of! Imagine my shock and delight that I can get a back of four salmon fillets at #Aldi’s for approximately $3.69! Even better,  I can’t tell the difference between these frozen fillets from Aldi’s and fresh fillets in the meat department at a regular grocery store.  The week I made this, asparagus was a vegetable of the week at Aldi’s for $.99, and I was able to get a 5 lb. bag of red potatoes for $2.99 at Aldi’s as well. The grand total for these items was $7.67. Now, because there are four salmon fillets in a bag, I am going to say $7.67 divided by four servings (although there are tons more servings in that 5 lb. bag of red potatoes) which comes to a grand total of $1.92 PER SERVING!!!! I don’t know about you, but that excites me! Please note: Not averaged into the cost are items such as olive oil, garlic salt, and pepper which are already in my pantry.

You are welcome! 🙂 See preparation directions below…

Meal Preparation Directions:

Sides Preparation:

  1. Turn oven to “broil” setting.
  2. Wash and slice red potatoes. Place in large bowl. Wash asparagus and place in same bowl as potatoes. Toss in olive oil and garlic salt until well covered. Place asparagus and potatoes on a baking sheet in a this layer, so they cook evenly.
  3. Place potatoes and asparagus in oven for 30 minutes on broil setting (you will want to turn the vegetables every 10 to 15 minutes in order to cook them evenly). Note: if you like your asparagus more on the raw side, you can add asparagus stalks to potatoes in the oven halfway through broil session for a total of 15 minutes cook time instead of 30 minutes of cook time.

Salmon Preparation: (Prepare during the last ten minutes of the vegetables roasting in oven)

  1. Take number of salmon fillets needed for the meal, and follow thaw directions on package.
  2. Spray nonstick olive oil spray and pour approximately 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a skillet; place on burner on high setting. Allow the skillet to get hot for a few seconds.
  3. Rinse the salmon fillets and pat dry with paper towel. Place fillets in skillet and sear several minutes on each side. Personally, I like all my meat and fish to be done, however, some people like salmon to be more on the raw side. In other words, sear salmon to preference. I sprinkle garlic salt and pepper on the salmon fillets as they are searing.
  4. Last, take vegetables from the oven and serve with salmon.


To add variety to this meal, you can also slice Brussels sprouts, sweet potatoes, and red potatoes and follow the same roasting directions as above. I documented this photo as an experiment. The salmon fillet shown above was purchased fresh from the grocery store. Again, I could NOT tell the difference between the fresh selection and the frozen salmon fillet that I get from Aldi’s. #winning!

Price Summary for the sides shown above:

Brussels sprouts: $1.89

Red potatoes $2.99

Sweet potatoes $1.89

Frozen Salmon (shown in first picture) $3.69

Total: $10.46 ($10.46 divided by four = $2.62 PER SERVING!!!!! Wow!!!:)


Enjoy! Please let me know how you like this meal!

Stay tuned as I publish more clean meal recipes that are $5 or less!


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