to think that eating healthily is too expensive?(190 Posts)
I made a huge pot of potato and leek soup for less than a few pounds. 4 pack of leeks reduced to 80p, 1 large baking potato at 70p ish, few garlic cloves and some stock. Made about 3 adult portions and a few kids ones. My tip, but fruit and veg in the evenings when reduced and be inventive
I've just checked online and Sainburys & Tescos also do the same. I usually have some in the freezer - I feel that the smoked salmon makes a simple meal feel like a luxury.
Thank you Flatbread, I'll have a look.
If you want to make soups I'd suggest getting a crock pot/slow cooker, you can use the cheapest cuts of meat (if you want meat) and slow cook the soups all day, they do a fantastic job.
I have been known to read the ingredients off a can or packet of stuff I like and improvise, It has made for some lovely dinners.
We feed three adults, a toddler and two dogs on around £50 a week, we could spend more, but having had to pull it in a LOT previously I actually like seeing how low we can go as it enables us to do other things.
I cook from scratch every day, when DD was a young baby I used to prep dinner during her morning nap, and just switch pans on later, we also use a slowcooker a lot, again prepping whilst she napped. Now she rockets around behind the baby gate whilst I cook. It's like anything, the more you do it the easier it gets. DH takes a packed lunch to work.
I meal plan, and try to factor in what we call "free meals" - so something made from leftovers of other meals, I boil bones for stock, use parmesan rinds in soup, use broccoli stalks to make soup etc. You can also use peelings - as long as they have been washed they are fine in soup - it's just another part of the vegetable, and actually contain more nutrients and fibre than the flesh of most veg.
I also shop a day later every week, so this week I shopped on Monday, next week I will go Tuesday, the following week Wednesday, the extra day is either a leftover day, using up the last bits of the previous shop a la Nigel Slater or a storecupboard day - it's not hard to do with a bit of thought, and it means for every eight weeks you only actually do seven food shops.
I shop between Tesco, Aldi and Lidl, with Aldi being the cheapest. I buy a LOT of fruit and veg, but aside from grapes for DD I only buy the £1 packs of anything, it means we're eating seasonally too because fruit/veg in season is cheaper. I buy meat in Tesco 3 for £10, but stretch it out so each pack does two meals. The pork loin steaks have six in, and I use three in either a sweet and sour with extra veg, or in a casserole.
Tinned beans (butter beans, kidney beans etc) are cheap, healthy, taste good and are very filling. They can be thrown into any soup or stew to bulk them out.
Anything using mince you can throw a handful or two of oats into to bulk it out and make it go further.
Forgot to mention - I found cooking from scratch and not eating processed foods (no white bread, white pasta, fruit juice) was the best way to lose weight. Eating the way your body was designed to eat - things it could hunt or gather, works really well.
YANBU Puddle, but these bits of info might help... And please
ignore forgive me if I'm saying anything you already know!
- There is a fantastic 'classic' (30+ year old) cookbook called 'The Pauper's Cookbook', which I learned to cook from, which has loads of cheap recipes Amazon link
- Buy your fruit/veg from an open market rather than a supermarket - they'll be literally a third of the price, sometimes less.
- Buy staples in bulk if you can store them. Bigger bags/bottles etc. are cheaper, of course. But also, it's usually possible to get a card for your local Cash 'n' Carry store or a semi-wholesalers, where corner shops etc. get their stock - and multi-packs will be cheaper there.
- There is more 'food value' in whole foods, and they are usually better 'cash value' too - e.g. wholemeal bread and pasta have more nutrients than white/processed equivalents, and fill you up more, so you eat less.
- Ready meals are completely out if you are feeding a family on a budget. The cheap ones are rubbish, and the decent ones are too expensive. (But if you are
more organised than me, you can get plastic take-away tubs, make meals in batches, and freeze them). It's much cheaper to cook meals from scratch, including plenty of quick meals.
- Some 'basic' things are much, much cheaper to make yourself than buy ready-made. A big loaf of wholemeal bread costs about 30-50p to make, for instance (depending on whether you bought your flour in bulk). Pizzas cost about 40-50p each if you buy plain bases, and make your own topping with tinned tomatoes, grated cheese, etc. (Kids really like doing this btw, cos they get to choose their own toppings!) Soups, pasta sauces, pancake/yorkshire pud batter and pastry are easy to make and much cheaper than their ready-made equivalents.
- Eating veggie is cheaper, usually. Stews with beans or chick peas, lentils in everything ... I make a healthy, well-balanced veggie Prue Leith's 'Vegetarian Bible' is the classic, but it's very hard to get hold of - or very expensive. The Vegetarian Society provides online recipes here
and isn't OTT!
Oops, just noticed half a sentence missing in the last para... It should say "I make a healthy, well-balanced veggie meals for 3, for about £2.50 on average, but could cut this down to £1.50/meal with a bit more effort (and if we stopped eating quorn)".
This is very useful, thanks. If anyone uses these farms and gives feedback that would be great!
i have my own lamb obvs so just plucked them from google!
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