Driving home last week, I saw a Del Taco ad for 39 cent tacos on Tuesday nights (as opposed to 59 cents regular price). Coincidentally, I was making tacos that night for our family also. Some have claimed that at such a low price, making tacos at home would be more expensive. So just for grins, I did the math.
Not only that, but my numbers are based on using organic ingredients exclusively. These are not only healthier because they do not contain questionable ingredients such as preservatives, genetically engineered foods, and (in the case of ground beef) excrement, but they also taste so much better.
1 lb organic ground beef: $6*
2 dozen organic corn tortillas @ $.99 each: $1.98
1/2 cup organic sunflower oil for frying tortillas: $.96
1 head organic romaine lettuce: $.50
TOTAL: $11.69 for 24 tacos
So, on all days but Tuesday night, cooking at home using organic ingredients is still cheaper than this "deal". Using conventional ingredients would cut the cost in half, to about one quarter per taco, making home cooking cheaper any day of the week.
Eating out even the cheapest, junkiest foods is more expensive than one might realize. This calculation does not even account for the expenses associated with poor health, an inevitable side effect of eating fast "food". Cooking dinner at home is better on every level - nutrition, taste, and cost.
* It is possible to find organic ground beef for as low as $4/lb, but we prefer to buy ours from a small local organic rancher. Had I used the less expensive organic ground beef, the total cost for the meal would have been $9.69, or a little more than 39 cents per taco - virtually the same price as the Del Taco junk food.