Having to come home pretty late, I needed to plan something that would be easy and pretty hands-off. I cooked an Italian rice casserole full of vegetables: onion, garlic, pepper, spinach, olives, chickpeas and green beans.
After all the vegetables were chopped and the garlic, onion, chickpeas and peppers were sauteed, there was nothing to do but add the rice, the rest of the vegetables and stock. I baked it for 40 minutes and dinner was on the table without a whole bunch of hassle. The taste was pretty nice, too, so this was a success as far as I was concerned.
green beans, spinach: $3
olives, onion, garlic: $1
Total to feed a family of 8: