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Cheap meals/recipies needed please

(22 Posts)
Blossomhill Sun 26-Aug-07 22:29:00

I know this has been done to death but could really do with some help! Thanks! xxx

SpeccieSeccie Sun 26-Aug-07 22:33:27

Anything with eggs is quite inexpensive and can be delicious. Omlettes, souffles, scrambled eggs - that's what we have when we're broke. Usually with a bit of cheese and salad.

Blossomhill Sun 26-Aug-07 22:34:47

If it wasn't for my mortgage going up by £200 we would be ok angry

TheArmadillo Sun 26-Aug-07 22:35:30

toad in the hole - add stuffing mix made up with just hot water to the batter to bulk it out.

Places like Asda do packs of off cuts of bacon for about £1 - great for making soups/stirfries, cheap meat for meals.

Vegetable soup, can make it with bacon pieces or a chicken carcass for a bit of extra flavour.

Yorkshire puddings with bits of bacon in bottom with veg and gravy.

Mince is very versitile and you can bulk it out with breadcrumbs/lentils/beans/chickpeas.
Makes burgers
meatballs
lasagne
stirfry
add to soup
mince pie
shephards pie
add chilli powder and serve as fajitas.

A whole chicken lasts several meals adn then carcass can be used to make soup with noodles and sweetcorn/stock etc.

I usually buy 1 big joint of meat, that does for 3 meals plus lunches and then something like sausages/mince/bacon pieces.

Jacket potatoes with tuna and sweetcorn/beans and cheese/salad and left over meat.

choosyfloosy Sun 26-Aug-07 22:36:48

This pasta sauce isn't THAT cheap to buy, nor is it seasonally sensitive blush but it will make about 4 'lots' for your family so probably less than £2 per meal, plus cost of pasta, and cheese if you like.

peel and chop 1 butternut squash and 1 onion. Chop 2 red peppers, 3 carrots, 3 courgettes. Cook all veg gently in some oil for 10 mins. Add 6 cans chopped tomatoes, bring to boil and simmer for 30 mins. Blend in processor if you want to.

TheArmadillo Sun 26-Aug-07 22:39:46

Don't buy sauces in jars - much cheaper to make your own and then freeze in portions.

BAsic tomato sauce is easy - onions, garlic, herbs (I usually use rosemary) pepper, passata, can add a bit of red wine if you have any. Can add veg like peppers/courgettes etc if you like.

Can be used with pasta (cheap to buy in bulk) or with mince (see a theme running here wink).

Basic white roux is easy - can then add cheese to make cheese sauce or any other flavours.

Melt butter in pan, add flour till makes thick (almost solid) paste, then take off heat and add milk little by little until liquid and consistency that you want. Add plenty of black pepper. Then you can add cheese/curry powder/mustard/garlic whatever you like.

TheArmadillo Sun 26-Aug-07 22:41:36

HAve you got a slow cooker - they are usually good for preparing cheap meals and mean you odn't have to do lots of cooking in the evening.

TheArmadillo Sun 26-Aug-07 22:42:13

Also good to make extra portions of meals and freeze to use as cheap 'ready' meals.

TheArmadillo Sun 26-Aug-07 22:49:35

some ideas here

www.mumsnet.com/Talk/4/156374?o=1188164822419

www.mumsnet.com/Talk?topicid=1379&threadid=292909#5868860

www.mumsnet.com/Talk?topicid=1379&threadid=110113#2376463

collision Sun 26-Aug-07 23:10:28

Tuna Pasta Bake is a great one as you can buy cheap tuna, tomatoes and pasta and make a lot! and it is filling.

Buy a bigger chicken than usual.

Have a roast dinner with all the veg
Turn the leftovers into curry or pasta sauce
Boil the bones and turn into soup


Bake your own biscuits and cake and bread.

Mon Tuna Pasta Bake
Tues Roast chicken
Wed Cheese Omelettes and salad
Thurs chicken curry and rice
Fri Vegetable soup with homemade bread
Sat Spaghetti with tomato sauce and cheese
Sun Jacket potatoes with various fillings and salad

On top of that buy milk and bread and baked beans for lunch

Def less than £50!!

AllieBongo Sun 26-Aug-07 23:11:20

blossomhill, i am in the same boat. even though we have a new fixed rate it is £160 more a month

expatinscotland Sun 26-Aug-07 23:14:11

I do a roast organic chicken every other week or so with roast veg. Then grind up any leftover veg in the food processor, mix with tuna, breadcrumbs and egg, then make 'tunaballs' out of it.

You can also take the leftover chicken and grind it up in the food processor for chicken balls.

mawbroon Sun 26-Aug-07 23:24:21

I use a lot of dried beans and pulses which I soak myself. These can be used to bulk up a whole variety of dishes.

I also buy soya mince to use in things like lasagne or spag bol. The stuff I buy makes the equivalent of 800g for (I think) 64p, or you could make your normal mince go further by adding this if you don't like the texture on it's own. Turkey and pork mince are a good bit cheaper then beef mince too.

collision Sun 26-Aug-07 23:26:31

ooh yes I forgot lentils and pulses too!!

Lentil curry
chickpeas and couscous
Vegetarian chilli and rice

TheArmadillo Sun 26-Aug-07 23:28:25

Definately agree with soya mince - great in things like lasagne. Also half and half with ordinary mince is good.

Dried stuff better than frozen stuff I find.

TheArmadillo Sun 26-Aug-07 23:31:25

lentils/pulses/soya mince are brilliant to bulk out things like ordinary mince as they have similar texture and absorb the flavour so not particularly noticeable.

Burgers made with part mince or chicken or tuna and then added chick peas (blended or just mashed) and a bit of currypowder are really good.

Falafels are just pureed chick peas with beaten egg and a couple of spices - they are great in pita bread.

Definately be careful to use up leftovers. MAkes a great difference.

overthehill Sun 26-Aug-07 23:54:24

Don't know if you live in a town or not, but eating seasonally helps: eg today we had, amongst other things, summer veg soup (with runner beans from my boss's allotment, new pots etc) and plum pie (again plums given to us).

If you have a breadmaker, get it out & save yourselves loads of money whilst baking delicious nourishing loaves.

I also use lots of pulses (cooked in a pressure cooker for speed), & by liquidising the ingredients they can be well disguised in sauces - eg red lentils in pasta sauce - and soups - red lentils with carrots, onions & pots to make golden soup, split peas in with pots & leeks to make leek & pot soup; secret is not to use too many so that they don't affect taste.

Sosmix is cheap & makes good toad-in-the-hole or veggie sausages, and children can get involved by shaping them into whatever shapes they fancy.

My children like cheesy potatoes (layers of pots baked with milk & grated cheese), & sweetcorn fritters are cheap & easy (tin of sweetcorn, 6 tbsp flour, 6tbsp milk, 4oz - or less - grated cheese, mixed together & fried). My children love pancakes & baked potatoes, & we also use soya mince for bolognese sauce, shepherd's pie etc.

For a really cheap treat - or a money-making venture(!) - my children have had stalls at the school summer fair & in the street, get some popping corn & make popcorn. We have a popcorn maker, but you can do it in a pan, & it's far more fun & better tasting than what you can buy.

Bon appetit!

Blossomhill Mon 27-Aug-07 13:35:04

Loads of great ideas thanks everyone. The links were really helpful Armadillo.
Alliebongo ~ it's awful isn't it and there's nothing we can do about it

Blossomhill Mon 27-Aug-07 20:38:47

keep them coming please

CissyCharlton Mon 27-Aug-07 20:51:18

Packet of ham/bacon pieces (about £1)
Packet of dried peas (about 20p)
1 onion (10p)
1 carrot (10p)


Soak the peas overnight as per instructions on packet
Grill, roast or fry ham pieces until cooked.
Fry onion and carrot until softened.
Add all ingredients together with water, bring to the boil and then simmer until peas are soft.

Eat with crusty bread.

Judy1234 Mon 27-Aug-07 21:40:41

Baked potato with cheese
Roast chicken and brown rice
Sausages and mash
Eggs as someone else said
Tinned sardines and rice

rantinghousewife Mon 27-Aug-07 21:57:11

Cauli cheese, macaroni cheese (make the cheese sauce yourself, v.cheap). Ifyou like spicy food, you could make Mean Beans, v cheap.
1 onion, 2 cloves of garlic, both chopped, 8oz cannellini beans, soaked overnight, (Ijust do them before I go bed) a tblsp brown sugar, same of red wine vinegar, treacle, golden syrup, wholegrain mustard and a splash of tabasco and a chili. Fry the onion, garlic and chili, shove in everything else, cover with water, bung in the oven, cook for a couple of hours. I often stick in carrots and anyother veg that needs using up aswell.

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