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Meal Plan on a Budget

Make do with what you've got

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We’re into week 4 of our money-saving and debt-free journey, and I thought I’d share this week’s meal plan with you. Given my husband’s excessive spend last week, I’ve been desperately trying not to go shopping and have stretched my number two tip for saving on my supermarket bill (actually, I frequently do this, as I detest going food shopping).

Freezer fodder (sometimes also called Freezer Roulette) is basically whatever I can find in the freezer if I can’t be bothered to cook and/or need to use up leftovers. The girls ended up having chicken nuggets, pasta shapes mixed with a cheese triangle (Aldi’s version of Dairylea), and smashed peas, and I had Thai fish curry that was leftover from last week.

The week before last, I bought a big pack of chicken breasts from Aldi as I often do, as it works out cheaper to separate them and freeze the portions. Alternatively, I like to go to my local butcher and get 8 chicken breasts for £10, and he bags them up into pairs for me.

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Meal plan on a budget

So last week we had a homemade chicken curry, and I put the remainder of the breasts in the freezer, and got two out at the weekend to make a chicken pie. As sometimes happens, life got in the way, and I didn’t get round to making the pie after all. I thought I’d attempt it today, only to find (as suspected), the chicken was no good. I had to do something I hate doing; I had to throw it away. With the pastry made and the chicken pie prep already underway, I needed to improvise. Fortunately, hubby had bought some chicken drumsticks for his 12-hour night shift (he usually does wings, and they’re oh-so-delicious) as he likes to snack as he goes, but he hadn’t used the second pack. So these went in the oven while the sauce commenced its journey in the slow-cooker. When slightly cooled, I’ll strip half of them and put the meat in with the sauce mixture, and we’ll have the rest of them with tomorrow’s planned jacket potato and salad.

These balls-ups are not uncommon for me. A few weeks ago, I’d made home-made pizzas and put one in the freezer to be used the following weekend, as I knew we’d have a busy day ahead. Unfortunately for me, as I was so tired and didn’t think of the obvious, I put the uncooked pizza straight onto the oven shelf… and the dough, and entire pizza, literally melted onto the bottom of the oven. The girls ended up having mini-pizzas (toasting muffins topped with tomato puree and grated cheese) and I think I just had gin. And maybe some hummus and pitta.

So you see, if you’re ever in despair at dinner having gone wrong (it happens to the best of us!), be assured that there will always be a way to turn it around. It might not be what you wanted, but where there’s a will, there’s a way. Money saving is all about improvisation, and if you can do that, you can do anything.

(6) Comments

  1. Roisin ballinger says:

    Keep going …. I have also decided enough is enough and have put the breaks on our spending! We are all slaves to debt …… I was listening to the radio this morning and they said that wages are now below where they were ten years ago!!! So we are all relying on easy credit and interest free deals! Well I have decided not to be a debt slave any longer!! I know it won’t be easy but I think slot of people are embarking on the same journey which makes it easier . So keep it going you are an inspiration xxx

    1. Hi Roisin! Thank you so much for your comment. I agree, the debt-free community is amazing and so supportive. Good luck on your journey, what plans do you have in place so far? X

      1. Roisin Ballinger says:

        Starting with a very strict budget to get my overdraft on the food account wiped , then once that’s sorted I am going to put the savings I make on the food account over to clear our credit card! They are the work of the devil😱so easy to bung it on the credit card until the bill comes in! Also have cut up my Next card 🙌🙌🙌🙌the relief is amazing ……. crickey that was a long winded reply 😂xx

        1. Ha! It’s not that long winded 🙂
          It’s a good plan – are you looking at the debt snowball method then? I know what you mean about credit cards, I think they should be banned! I was watching Poldark on Sunday and the Warleggans were talking about credit… I just shook my head at the fact it’s been an ongoing issue for hundreds of years!

  2. preciousearnings2 says:

    Great post. cutting back our food bill is my priority to help us save money, I already do freezer roulette but I didnt have a name for it so i like that. I need to meal plan better and actually stick to it.

    1. It’s amazing where we can save money when we put our minds to it! Yes freezer roulette… I just made it up one day, although I do not endorse gambling lol.
      Thanks for coming along and visiting my blog, I really appreciate it! X

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