Eating on a budget doesn’t have to mean eating poorly!
Each week I spend £16 on food and approximately £1 on milk, although I do sometimes add a little money from a different budget if I’m having friends to visit.
My strategy is to buy two weeks’ worth of a food at a go with Tesco’s online grocery service, that way I don’t have to carry my stuff home on the bus, and it’s far easier to stick to a budget. (When I add toiletries, cleaning products, and items my housemates want, I end up over the £40 minimum order and I can make the most of £1 delivery!)
This fortnight* I bought:
* I learned this week that fortnight is a particularly British phrase. For the uninitiated fortnight means two weeks (i.e. fourteen-nights).
Breakfasts: Tesco Value wheat biscuits, milk
Left over from a previous shop: Tesco bran flakes
Lunches & snacks: Brown bread, brown pitta, houmous, mature cheddar, baked beans, carrots, tomatoes, a round lettuce, a cucumber portion, a jar of beetroot, Tesco Value yoghurts, jacket potatoes (see dinners below)
Left over from a previous shop: Dairy milk chocolate, cream crackers, eggs
From the cupboard: Marmite, jam, honey
Dinners: Steak, salmon, gnocchi, passata, potatoes, green beans, courgettes, cannellini beans, haricot beans, mascarpone, parmesan, black olives, part bake baguettes.
Left over from a previous shop: Fish cake, pesto, feta, English muffins, broad beans
From the cupboard: Chilli flakes, lime juice, soy sauce, salt & pepper, pasta, rice, frozen peas, lemon juice, white wine (I have a box of it that lives on top of the fridge), rosemary (from the back garden), dried herbs
I also replenished the cupboards: Mayonnaise, squeezy garlic, couscous, Flora Buttery margarine
My menu for the fortnight looks like this:
x2 Lime, soy sauce and chilli salmon, with rice, green beans and broccoli
x2 Black pepper steak, with mashed potato, carrots, peas and green beans
x1 Mini muffin pizzas (with feta and courgette topping), oven bake chips, and salad
x2 Pasta, pesto and courgettes – this is an invention of mine
x2 Gnocchi with broad beans (swapping mushrooms for other veg) – I always try to make something new each fortnight. Some of them get added to my list of things I eat, other things don’t! This is my new recipe for this time round.
x1 Chicken tikka masalla ready meal
x1 Fish cake, with couscous, brocolli and peas
x2 Flageolet bean casserole
x1 Unplanned (e.g. Left-overs / housemate cooks for me / meal out etc.)
Most weeks, one or two meals get carried over into the following weeks, as often my ingredients make more than two portions.
I don’t really do puddings. I often just finish a meal with a block or two of chocolate, or maybe a yoghurt. Sometimes my housemates buy or make cakes or biscuits, so I might eat them!!