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£75 per week, need to feed 2 adults 5 children(53 Posts)
Hello I'm new to mumsnet but I really need help..
I'm currently 26 weeks pregnant with my 6th child and I have gained 3 stone
I've worked out our household money after bills we have £75 left per week for food shopping which isn't enough.
I need to buy wipes, nappies and formula which leaves us with £55 to feed 2 adults and 5 children (2 are in full time school) 😯.. I normally go to Iceland and buy prossesed food but I really need to loose some weight.
Does anybody have any ideas what weekly meal plan I can make that will feed us all for £55 per week?
That's going to be tough but if you meal plan and make homemade it may work.
So my shops are 2 weekly, meat is brought in large packet then split.
So 1kg mince split into 2. Chicken portions large 20 pieces pack from butchers spilt in to 2 packs.
I online food shop. But try to leave money spare to grab end of day meat and freeze it until the day it's going to be cooked etc.
Home made pasta sauces are healthier and cheaper than jars or chilled pots.
Beans on toast once a week is not bad.
Go to local veg and fruit market in our town at end of day they sell off for 50p a bowl of fruit etc.
check you are receiving your correct benefits if you get them etc.
Would breastfeeding be an option then you'd save money on formula you could spend on food with the added bonus of losing weight quicker?
Shop at aldi. It is so cheap plus nappies are cheaper. £2.49 for 44!
You can still go to Iceland - but instead of buying processed food, buy ingredients; frozen mince, chicken portions, frozen veg etc. also stock up on things like pulses and beans and use half meat, half beans/pulses when you make something like shepherds pie or spag Bol. Oats are good and cheap so get these and have porridge instead of more processed cereals and you can also use them to make flapjacks.
Probably wouldn't assume breastfeeding will be the cheaper option. It might, or it might not. There are threads on here from women who've had both experiences. Same is true of losing the weight.
So to answer your specific question OP, £20 a week sounds quite a lot for nappies, wipes and formula all in. Will you be using the cheapest formula brand? They're all alike so unless baby has a particular reaction to one type, which does happen, might as well get the cheapest. I'd also check out own brand wipes and nappies too. Can you get to an Asda, Aldi or Tesco? Those are cheap and Asda in particular usually have offers. You could probably shave a couple of quid off there. I've found Asda's range brilliant, only slightly less absorbent than Pampers and sooooooo much cheaper.
Also probably silly question, but you did factor any CB and CTC you might get for the new baby in, right?
I have reusable nappies and liners I'm done with you just need the pads which aren't dear and once you have them that's it. Let me know if you fancy giving them a go although I understand if not! With that big a family an extra load of laundry is probably the last thing on your mind!
ditch the wipes and use water&flannels instead.
agree with others: meal plan around offers and buy ingredients. lentils are your friends to bulk out meals.
Consider trying to eat veggie at least once a week. Even if it is just beans on toast as suggested above. You could also do an easy cheap pasta dish, or my meat loving lot all devour this Red Lentil Shepherd's Pie, which I flavour with extra stock rather than wine plus dried herbs. Meal planning really is the best way, as if you can ensure you aren't wasting food that will save money. Soup once a week is great too especially if you make your own.
is there anything else you can cut down on? e.g. do you have an expensive broadband/tv package you could renegotiate or cut back on package? have you checked u switch for utilities? does your husband take packed lunch for work? are you getting all benefits entitled to? are you paying off money for debts if so how much?
£20 seems a lot for nappies wipes and formula unless for more than one child? how old are children?
Could you buy the wipes in bulk rather than weekly? In aldi I just got a box of their wipes (65 per pack) for £5 instead of buying per pack as required.
Buy some reuseable pots (I have seen good ones in home bargains and matalan that can be frozen and microwaved). Every meal you make, take 2 portions off, eg pasta and bolognese, curries etc. I do this because I have a bad habit of loading everyone's plates to use what's it the pan rather than waste it, and they then tip it in the bin after. Bulk out with potatoes or fdozen veg. Write on the plastic pot with an eyeliner pencil, which can wipe off when you've used it. You can then reuse these as 'ready meals' or as food for the children. Saves you calories and money!
Turning mostly vegetarian saves a lot. Write a two or three week meal plan and just repeat it.
E.g. Jacket potatoes at least once a week with beans and cheese or tuna mayo
A big sack of rice from the Chinese or Asian supermarket saves over time
Have rice with your weekly meat and cook enough to have egg fried rice the day after
Eggs mornay popular here
Veg lasagne - I make mine with onion, tomato, carrot and a tin of baked beans with the sauce washed off
Bread and butter pudding with a handful of raisins fills kids up
Can you get to a market? There's areas in supermarket owners are millionaires, markets are cheaper and you can buy the amount you want.
£9- formula (breastfeeding not an option she is now 9 months old)
£8- large box of little angels wipes (3 children under 3)
£10- 2 large packs little angels nappies (for 2 children and 3 at bedtime)
So after I said £20 for nappies wipes and formula it's actually £27!!
Yes we're on the correct benefits husband is self employed and has good weeks and very bad weeks.
It's a while since mine were little. Can you do alternative full fat milk/formula and food? Or are they only having formula at that age? They had baby rice at 4 moths back in the day.
have you looked and put your statement of affairs into moneysavingexpert some great advice - they also have a great old style forum.
we use aldi and local butcher with meal planning it might be doable but tight - we like soups, cheap meals like corn beef hash / beans on toast etc.
we spend a similar amount to you but for two adults and two childern (13/15) but could cut futher if we need, we just don't like wasting money.
9 months is a bit young yet vertigo. The advice now is that a formula fed baby needs 18oz a day I think it is until 12 months, and cow's milk shouldn't be given as a main drink until then. OK to have in food. I'm not saying anything magical happens overnight on the eve of the 1st birthday, but 9 months is a bit soon for much cow's milk. OP could start mixing it up a bit in a few weeks.
Reading a few frugal blogs might help, a girl called jack has lots of cheap recipes.
I'd second getting some reusable nappies. Even if you just use them in daytime changes you can save some money, look for them free on local Facebook sites.
In tesco they give away free fruit for kids to eat as you shop. It's in a tray in the veg alise. If you walk there just to buy a big bag of pulses you can all get a snack too.
Pulses are a fab cheap source if protein xx
Thought of spending £10 at a fruit and veg stall? If there is one convenient to you? Soup to start dinner. Plenty potatoes for hubby and children. Apple sauce for everyone. Fruit pies and tarts to round out the meal. Bit more cooking for you but you can cook ahead if you are willing.
Am also on a low income and have 4 DC.
I have found Aldi to be best for nappies and wipes. I use cow and gate formula as cheapest.
We only eat meat once/twice a week and eat a lot of pasta and soup.
Do the DC get free school lunches? This helps me a lot. I also get Healthy Start vouchers towards formula / fruit & veg - do you qualify?
It's a very tight budget OP.
We are a family of four, 2 adults and 2 DS I had to change my ways since I stopped working, currently on maternity leave. My OH is self employed so very uneven income.This is what I do.
Every week I menu plan. I first look in my food cupboard to see what I can use and then I write a shopping list based on my menu plan. It sounds time consuming but it takes me literally 5 min.
I have got a standard shopping list on my phone, things that I buy/need everyweek/don't want to run out ( toilett paper, tea, coffee, sugar, milk, bread, cheese, yogurth, porridge, pasta, rice, oil, seasonal fruit, washing up liquid etc) so a quick look around to see what we are missing is all I need before I go shopping.
Also got a writing pad in the kitchen in which i/ we note down things that are getting low/ finish as week goes by.
I do my main shopping at Lidls, I am very careful when I go in to a shop for a top up, as I can get carried away and spend 20 pounds just when I was popping in for milk.
I try to avoid the shops so I don't get tempted
I always pay cash, don't carry my cards unless absolutely necessary
I cook mainly from scratch
For breakfast we have porridge or toast and for special occasions/ weknds crampets or pancakes
For lunch i make vegetable soups, baked potatoes, beans on toast, left overs from the day before, omelette, smthg easy.
For dinners, I cook lots of casserole dishes, curries, chillies, pasta bake, vegetable bake with creamed cheese, sausage and mash, fajitas, pasta bologna, lasagna, etc
I cook in whenever I can so for instance if I buy a kilo of mince I would bulk it up with lots( and lots) of veggies and tomato and I make pasta bolognesa, lasagna and chilli. Freeze some.I don't want to be cooking every day!
I looooove my slow cooker, I use it all the time.
We don't have fizzy drinks (can't afford them) just water or squash
We don't have desserts every night.
I kind of take budgeting for food as a challenge and a way to use my creativity, makes me look quite boring, I know, but I hope I was helpful
Good luck OP
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