to asked for a break down of what you eat if only spending £40/£50 a week on shopping(121 Posts)
when on other posts I often see poster claim to feed a family of 4 or 5 sometimes with pets for less than £50 a week. I have often asked for a bit of a break down or what they have for their evening meals this has never ever been answered.
is it all lentil stews and make a chicken last five meals or can it really be done still having healthy tasty meals and not cutting back on fresh fruit?.
I would like to know as well, and whether it includes lunches
£30-40, pregnant me, shift working dh, 2 yr old & a 1 yr old;
I batch cook twice a week (eg 1kg of mince, frozen onions, peppers, garlic, peas 2 tins of kidney beans, 2 tins chopped toms & half a tube of tomato paste & herbs/spices for chili con crane) and that will do (with rice or potatoes) for 6 meals (eg 3 evenings for dh & me and then dh having it 3 times for lunch at work, but it's all rotated/frozen etc so we never have the same meal more than twice in a row).
Usual week for the ds's and me is;
Breakfast; marmite on toast (4 slices in total) a banana smoothie (3 bananas, 1pint full fat milk, teaspoon honey & a handful of frozen berries)
Lunch; fish fingers, beans & scrambled egg (2 fingers each, a tin of beans & an egg each) and yogurt (big tub of lidl Greek full fat stuff)
snack; homemade cereal bar or a couple of biscuits & a serving of fruit (usually melon of some sort)
dinner; batched cooked whatever (tonight it's chicken, spinach & pesto pasta).
Most of the veg is frozen, I don't buy expensive fresh fruit like blueberries unless they're on offer/at the market (supermarket own brand frozen berry mix mostly), although We always have at least three fresh fruits in, but usually tee long lasting stuff like apples & oranges).
Unless we're having sandwiches i buy reduced bread & freeze it as we eat a lot of toast!
It's mostly shopping seasonally, little bit of shopping around & meal planning....and paying no attention to dates (aside from with meat)!
We don't eat meat, that saves a lot! Also we grow some of our own veg. I spent 50 this week but that included nappies and a bottle of wine.
Monday night we had veggie burgers, New potatoes and veg
Tuesday we had omelettes and salad
Wednesday we had spag bol with quorn mince
Last night was stuffed marrow with the leftover spag bol
Tonight we are eating out
For lunches I usually have one of those john west tuna salad things at work, once a week I treat myself to a sandwich from the bakers
Dh is home with one year old DS. For lunch they will have sandwiches, salads, DS will have tinned fish. They have home made or shop bought veggie burgers.
We all have a yoghurt at least once a day!
We shop at aldi of course!
Oh and as PP said, loads of fruit but the cheap stuff, apples, bananas and pears!
Ldll 99p 5kg bag of onions when on offer £1.99 when not. veg 50p-99p depending. Blueberries are £1 there. Pasta cheap. Rice 40p per bag basics lasts weeks. Meat can be split into different days so cost £1.50 per day. Recent trip to asda found even cheaper veg....
Example of Really cheap evening meal fresh filed pasta (99p Lldl and very tasty like the one with ham inside fresh counter check dates) pesto (£1jar lasts for weeks in fridge) mini veg (again Lldl), cut up lardons or bacon (cook separately). Mix. You can splash out and buy pine nuts (Lldl £1 something) and lightly toast them before adding to mix. Follow by oranges (Lldl last time £1.49 for a bag) or fruit salad. Bananas are cheap. Lldl in season does cheap pineapples, melon, strawberry, raspberry and blueberry. The answer is buy seasonal. Enough to feed 2-3 people.
I love Spanish omelettes too. You can add anything to it and so tasty. Rocket salad with it and nothing beats it. Jacket potatoes are good too as cheap. Look for supermarket offers. We aim for fish 2-3 times a week. If fish it more expensive that day but levels out over week. Sainsburys seeks prawns and chicken two packs(mix and match) for £5.
Example week, spaghetti bolognese, lentil lasagne, pork and parsnip casserole, filled pasta with veggies from the garden, fish cakes and veggies, tuna and Cous Cous salad. We always keep in lots of onions and potatoes and we grow a few veg at this time of year. I also buy cheese, tomatoes and chicken for sandwich fillers and we top up bread am milk during the week.
Breakfast : porridge with fruit / cereal / omelette / cheese on toast / homemade cheese scones / bacon and egg at weekend
Lunch: homemade soup / salad / cheese and crackers / sandwich / yesterdays leftover dinner
Dinner: homemade shepards pie with veg / pasta with mince and veg / turkey steaks with rice and veg or potatoes and veg / stuffed marrow / homemade spag bol - afters of fresh fruit / yoghurt / tinned rice pudding
Snack : fruit / hummus and pitta bread / toast
Sunday dinner is always full roast and homemade pudding
Fruit and veg is always that weeks special offers in Lidl.
Last weeks strawberries were gorgeous!
Lunches are simple bananas, perches, cherries whatever on offer and in season, bread (69p for 6 rolls like bits on top if possible) and then meat or cheese (Lldl) couscous (lldl99p pot lasts one week) rocket (69p keeps changing this price in Lldl) and from the 99p shop one chic bar of choice. Water from tap or tea to drink.
Agree Gemma. Did you get the cherries. One pot lasted over a week and sooo sweet. Dh loved him.
Loved stuffed marrow to and so cheap. At fetes 50p. Stuff with anything, cover with foil, bake (empty water occasionally). Eat...
I do a lot of freezing although I don't actually have a huge freezer! Lots of vegetables. You can make what looks like a meaty dish but really bulk it out with lots of vegetables. I buy fresh stuff at the Saturday market (I like organic carrots) where it is cheaper. Legumes are useful to thicken things out. Yellow split peas are good as a nice, not too strong, flavour. I soak and prep them in a huge batch then freeze. Add to shepherds pie etc as needed.
breakfast - cereal or toast and bannana or yoghurt
lunch - salad, fruit, bread or something on toast
snacks - fruit or chedders or cheese
dinner - vegetables, potatoes with chicken/homemade pie/silces/fish
once a week - pizza
sunday always a roast dinner
always shop aldi - occasional items from other stores. grow some items but i'm learning so growing not always very successful
littlemiss I think you need to be prepared to eat very 'samey' meals most of the time. Cheap chicken (bred and raised in questionable conditions) and mince. Lots of pasta, etc. Many types of fruit will be off the menu, although it's usually possible to find cheap apples and bananas.
If you don't have a Lidl, Aldi or street market/cheap farm shop nearby it's probably going to be very difficult to stick to such a low budget.
Believe me, I've tried!
drinks - water mostly, squash occasionally, lemonade for parties only (17p)
i find if we have pop wecrave it more but we dont have it so we dont miss it.
also use washsble nappies, wipes and sanitary saves loads
Two fingers we don't eat samey meals. It's different every night. Found cheap coconut milk the other day for 50p so stocked up. We make their curry from beginning. Winter food is different due to seasonal veg. Lots more hot pots.
The solution is pound or 99p shop, Lldl, lots of cheap basics like rice etc and then buy whats seasonal and on offer. Be inventive. My dairy diary cook book helps a lot...
i think it also comes down to how much you really want to make savings and not wasting food that you have. think about jaring, freezing or drying out fresh foods before they go off. how much food is getting thrown out each week. are items (wine, chocolate, crisps, pop) used everyday, weekly or special times only.
there is saving because you can and saving the money for other things and then there is spending less because you have to as have no more money
I'm not as impressive as some other posters but do about forty to fifty a week for four (DCs are small though and have lunches at nursery). I dont shop around that much either, mostly just one weekly online shop. We eat really well but I think you have I dedicate a lot of your life to cooking to achieve it. We both work full time but I've no doubt our house would be a lot cleaner if I didn't spend so much time
On what we eat.
We usually have porridge and a fruit for
Breakfast or eggs if we h time. Me and DH take leftovers for lunch or salady bits (usually have spinach, cherry toms, some
Kind of bean and grain, seeds whatever other veg. I eat LOADS of courgette salad am obsessed). I did a pork shoulder on the weekend so Monday we had pulled pork chilli with black beans, sweetcorn, spinach, peppers, homemade guac, homemade cornbread. Tues had spanakopita, Weds chicken tagine with cous COus and a moroccany carroty salad and green beans, thurs pulled pork buns with a gingery slaw. Tonight we will have sausages and probably a chicken noodle
Soup over weekend plus another sausagey meal probs sausage and courgette pasta.
We don't snack much but usually have a treatfruit in the freezer plus apples and satsumas. Puddings at the moment are ice lollies made from stewed up frozen fruits and a bit
Of plain yoghurt. But DH and I don't really eat puddings.
Still have plenty of
Pork in the freezer for other meals etc.
It can if you go to the market. I get 2 sports bags of fruit and veg, early morning so not the left damaged stuff for less than a tenner. I shop in the local butchers focusing on what he has on offer that week.
Milk cheese cereal and bread would be our biggest outlay. I do 16 x 4 pints of milk a week
We eat own brand weetabix or porridge for breakfast
Lunch at work is soup or Philadelphia with rivita with apple, banana, couple of satsumas.
Meat balls with pasta
Fish with potatoes and veggies
Lamb steaks with veggies
We have one meal out a week which isn't included in the budget.
We buy reduced meat in supermarkets and freeze it. We almost never buy brand names. We're both trying to eat better so we don't buy snacks/yoghurts / biscuits etc.
The cat has her own food budget.
Don't get down to quite that low, but do manage about £75 a week including nappies for one DC and a box of formula powder (£8-ish I think) about every 10 days. We have three DCs - 6, 3 and 4mo, both older ones are good eaters.
Main things we do are:
- not a huge range of fresh fruit - bananas, apples plus one other (pears/kiwi/Satsumas, usually), but frozen fruit aplenty for puddings etc
- we only eat meat a couple of times a week
- throw out nothing - any leftovers get eaten or made into pasties (you can make anything into a pasty by adding herbs and potatoes and rolling out ready made puff pasty! These are used for lunches)
- we get a 'free' meal or two every month when my mum visits and brings a couple of boxes of eggs from her neighbours' chickens
- we go blackberrying/grow salad in pots/grow tomatoes on the patio/make jam from my parents' fruit trees/take any free produce that's going/make wild garlic risotto in spring/hedgerow jam in autumn. Means we keep getting in enough fresh fruit and veg, and a bit of a variety.
This week's menu is pizza (frozen, two on offer plus salad from garden), lasagne (homemade, bulked out with veg), squash soup, fish pie, egg, peas and chips, sausage traybake, one meal of leftovers/cheese on toast. Lunches will be bread/houmous/veg sticks/cheese/scrambled eggs, breakfast is porridge, homemade jam on toast or Aldi cereal plus waffles or pancakes on weekend, snacks will be home baked flapjack/cakes/fruit loaf etc.
Join the discussion
Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Register now
Already registered with Mumsnet? Log in to leave your comment or alternatively, sign in with Facebook or Google.
Please login first.