Ever since I moved in with Mike, over two and half years ago, I’ve been in charge of the weekly shop. I used to just meal plan for the evenings that we were going to be home, but since being freelance I’ve had to meal plan for my breakfast and lunches. We used to spend around £40 a week but over the past months, it’s been upped to £50 to help with the extra food I’m buying. I like to set myself a budget as sometimes I can get very distracted and buy all kinds of bits we don’t need!
I tend to stick to the same few items every week as I follow Slimming World and have got some really great recipes that we love to have each week. Most of the order I make is fruit and veg…
We order our meat in too if we haven’t done a bulk buy from Costco in a while…
And once a month or so, I will order in a big box of cereal and a decent sized bag of pasta. Every other week I order a 12 box of the caffeine free diet coke and some bread.
For this order which came to just under £50 from Tesco, I made 7 nights worth of dinners and a good few breakfasts and lunches. All of the meals I made were Slimming World friendly and Mike enjoyed eating them too.
So what exactly did I make?
A week’s worth of breakfasts go between a bowl of Bran Flakes with semi-skimmed milk, and fat-free yogurt with plenty of strawberries and banana thrown in. I’m not a huge breakfast person by any means but I do always try and have a little something. Of a weekend, if we are home, Mike will make us pancakes and we will use the strawberries and bananas to top those too.
If I’ve had my yogurt for breakfast then I’m likely to have a sandwich for lunch. I’m not that adventurous at home so it will usually be ham or turkey with lettuce, cucumber and maybe a few spring onions. If I’ve had Bran Flakes for breakfast then I will have a Slimming World Ready Meal that I bulk buy from Iceland once a month to have a little variety. More often than not, I will have the leftovers from the night before to save money too.
I like to use a different meat or fish each night to keep the variety up! We usually start the week with a chicken stir-fry with plenty of veggies thrown in with a little soy sauce followed by a hearty portion of spaghetti bolognese that always has enough leftovers for lunch, and we love having homemade burgers on the George Forman with homemade chips with fried onions and peppers on the side. They are our main three stable dishes that we eat week in and week out. I then try and make something a little different with the rest of the chicken we have left for another evening meal, so during this weeks shopping, I made a potato and chicken curry which I had the leftovers for dinner a second night when Mike was out.
If our supermarket has any offers on then that will usually determine what we have for the rest of the week, so this week we got prawns and salmon on offer. With the prawns, I used the bread we had with some eggs and seasoning to make my very own popcorn prawns, a little like the popcorn chicken you get at KFC. I paired those with homemade paprika chips and plenty of veggies. I was a little boring with the salmon and just made a second stir-fry but with sweet chili sauce this time.
So the answer to this is that you can mot certainly eat healthily on a £50 weekly budget, in fact, I think you can eat healthily on far less than that if you are willing to have a shop around for good offers. A favourite offer of mine from Tesco is 3 types of meat or fish for £10 where I can make four evening meals and a lunch from that if I get the large portion of chicken, mince and prawns for example. Buying frozen veg is also a great way to save money if you have enough room in your freezer.
If you want more tips on how to save money when food shopping, check out this article from Satsuma Loans.