Oh no. You clearly have no idea.
That's because The Hobbit incorporated things from other books such as the simerallian. They called the movie "The Hobbit" but it was really all of Tolkien's works of Middle Earth that aren't LoTR.
There are many things that can only be done in CGI. What would you suggest they use instead? Do you think you could make a better Dragon using practical effects? Or perhaps you'd like to hire thousands of extras to get your army shots?
The Hobbit movies were anything but cheap, and you can't call them a cash grab because Peter Jackson wanted to do them back when he made the rest of LoTR. The only reason he didn't was because he couldn't get the film rights from the people who made the animated one years prior. A cash grab is something that is made to capitalize on something else's popularity. The Hobbit was always going to happen, and is likely to be the last we see of Tolkien's world, Peter Jackson put the effort in to show as much of that world as possible. So yes, strictly speaking, there's a lot of extra stuff in there. But it's not random crap people made up to pad the runtime, it's the incorporation of additional worldbuilding we would likely have never seen otherwise, the fact that you try to characterize this as a lowly cash grab, is what is truly insulting.
Most movies are adapted from books, and this entire topic is about things you'd like to see as movies, this comment could be said about almost anything.