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Eating well on a budget(17 Posts)
I need tips and ideas how to eat well on a budget. Call it £20 a week for one person.
I don't eat fish in general (it gives me reflux) or a large amount of meat.
Whatever you do, don't try and follow a low-carb diet. It costs a fortune.
Lentils, beans, oats, rice, pasta - make these the bulk of your diet, they are healthy and cheap.
porridge for breakfast
Home made soup for dinner veg/tomato/leek & potato
Meat and salad, meat and veg for tea,
Healthy and cheap
Frozen veg and tinned beans are your friend. Last night i had chickpea, tinned potato and frozen spinach curry..v cheap , i think i got the recipe from a girl called jack , her recipe book is great. Homemade tomato pasta sauce( tinned toms, frozen onion, frozen peppers, herbs) with value pasta. Jacket potatoes with beans and cheese. Potato omelet with any veg you have. Homemade lentil and veg soup (i use dried orange lentils, veg stock cube, onion, carrot, potato ).
Using frozen veg can work out cheaper.
Make stews and casseroles with combinations of chicken/meat/veg/pulses and lentils.
add eggs to the list.
Spend as little as possible on drinks and rubbishy snacks.
Make sure you can cook. Look in the Asian aisle in the supermarket (or independent grocers) for packs of spices very cheaply (curry powder, garam masala, chili, cumin and coriander). Much cheaper than jars and add flavour to pulses.
When I was at uni I'd buy the big value packs of pasta and rice, plus lots of frozen peas and other veg. I'd also get discounted meat and freeze it for when I needed it. I mainly only drink water so didn't spend much on drinks etc.
Bought it all on payday, then just got fresh bread and fruit/veg during the week to top it up. Wasn't very exciting but it did the job.
You could also get some fresh discounted/cheap veg to make into soups which you can freeze (recommend getting those smoothies in glass jars as the occasional treat and saving the glass as they are perfect for freezing soups).
I don't eat much meat but occasionally splash out on a whole organic chicken (once a month or less) which I use for a couple days meat, and use the carcass to make a months worth of stock for soups as it's very healthy.
For breakfasts, I buy about £20 worth of oats and nuts (and a few other stuff), which I chop finely, then store in jars. I use it as a healthy musli which I have with yogurt in the mornings. For the £20 worth I got 4 jars of the stuff and it lasts about four months at the rate I eat it. Makes great snacks too, and it's nice to sprinkle on a salad.
For a nice pudding thing, I get some bananas and mash them up, mix in some peanut or almond butter, then put it into an ice cube tray and freeze. Great to do with any bananas which are going a bit gross and saves money on ice poles, puddings etc, plus its mega tasty if you like banana.
Would also recommend investing in a few fresh herb plants to grow on your windowsills to add some extra flavour to your meals long term. Oh, and there's loads of veg you can regrow from scraps. Spring onions are particularly easy to regrow, but I've regrow all sorts from kitchen scraps. I even have a ginger plant growing now. If you buy lettuce with the roots you can plant them in some soul to regrow.
Buy a large chicken & roast it, you will get enough from it to do you loads of meals. You can carve it & freeze the meat in portions.
If you have a freezer look for meat on the reduced counter and either batch cook it or freeze it in portions convenient to you.
I've been making huge strews, home made bread rolls that don't need butter and Yorkshire puddings!
I'm moving into uni accommodation very shortly and I'm trying to plan meals. I have a dinky slow cooker and I'm planning on buying bags of frozen chicken/beef to make soup or stews. Also bulk buying pasta and rice.
Planning on buying veg from the market to save money.
Milk, cheese and eggs are very much staples in my mind so will always have them. Bread I already freeze in portions so it lasts all week.
Stodgy puddings like rice pudding & semolina with a dollop of jam fill you up. You can buy semolina very cheaply in the world food aisles & use smart price rice not pudding rice. You can make them on the hob quite quickly.
I do vegan lunches, lentil or pulse based stews or soups. I make dumplings for stews with beef suet. Very filling. Big bags of lentils are cheap in the world food aisles if you haven't got an Asian supermarket.
Vegan cake or brownie recipes are good too, it's usually oil, sugar, flour and ordinary milk if your not vegan. There's no point buying soya just for a cake. They don't taste weird & are really cheap to make.
The girl called Jack blog is good, it's cheap recipes but very filling.
Keep an eye on offers in Aldi & lidl, if there cheaper for something & your going past one you might as well buy it there. Especially for really cheap veg.
If you go on the mysupermarket desktop site you can register & put price alerts on items you buy regularly. Very handy.
Also try homebargains, b&m bargains, pound stretcher, farm foods & Iceland. You can buy huge bags of tea in lots of them, so much cheaper.
Save the student is a website I still use now especially for food storage tips. They have a section on matched betting too which has upped my income. Also valued opinions paid surveys, they pay out in sainsburys & Tesco vouchers as well as high street shops.
If you register for a nectar card you can log in on the desktop site & search for E Rewards. They're surveys which pay out in 100-300 nectar points. I save mine up because you can use them for online grocery shops & clothes in the 25% off Tu clothes events. I rarely spend over £10 in sainsburys but I've got £102 in nectar points for the Christmas big shop, you can save them for using in Argos & eBay too.
There's a credit crunch section & money section on here, I'm on the credit crunch frugal thread. You're welcome to join in or lurk.
we manage on £2 per person per day. It is getting a bit tricker now prices are going up.
You can make your own laundry detergent too. I don't use it on woollens, I use shampoo in the machine for them.
Two bars of soap, grated (I use the food processor) from Aldi. 40p.
250g of soda crystals 16p
99p bottle of Zoflora.
Put the grated soap into your largest saucepan & fill up with water & stir over a medium heat until most of the soaps dissolved.
Add the soda crystals. Stir till dissolved.
Fill the bucket halfway with cool water, add the soap mix and stir until throroughly mixed. Leave to cool for an hour.
Stir in the Zoflora (I use linen fresh) Leave overnight.
In the morning it will be a solid. Use the cap off an aerosol of polish/hairspray for a dosing device. One scoop per load.
£1.55 & it will last you ages. Probably the whole academic year.
Will your accommodation have decent freezer space? I think this is sometimes a big challenge for cheap eating if you only have access to small freezer shelf and/or space in shared fridge. Makes it near impossible to buy in bulk or store leftovers. But just means a shift towards dried/tinned ingredients and less batch cooking.
I think I'll have a freezer to myself.
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