Menu Planning and budgetting.

I shopped late last night. I’m really starting to notice the almost weekly increases but yesterday I topped up my store cupboard and was shocked by some prices. Here’s the week’s menu.

Today – Fish pie and salad, taken out of the freezer and reheated in the mini oven, eaten with the much reduced price salad from Pesky Tesky.

Here are the rest of the meals.

Salmon Fish cakes and salad with croutons.

One tin of salmon, mixed with mashed potatoes, finely chopped parsley and one egg. Fry gently on both sides until golden brown. The cost of a tin of salmon surprised me, it’s now £1.50 a tin, however, that’s enough to make eight fish cakes, four for supper and four to freeze for another day. After you have lifted the salmon cakes out of the frying pan, drop in  the small cubes of old bread – fry and serve with the salad.

Spinach and Ricotta Cannelloni

You will need a quarter of a pack of frozen spinach, allow to defrost. One tub of Ricotta cheese – now £1 a tub! When did that go up?? 100g of Parmesan and one egg. Cannelloni is also expensive and was £2.50 for a large box in the supermarket! It will last but that’s a lot to lay out! The sauce to cook it in is: one tin/box of passata, one finely chopped onion, two finely chopped cloves of garlic. Saute the onion and garlic in some oil, add some black pepper and passata (I just use a cheap tin of tomatoes and mush them myself) Cook through until sauce like, usually about 20 minutes.

Drain the spinach in a fine plastic sieve, squash all the water out with the back of a spoon, stir together with small pot of Ricotta, Parmesan and one egg. To get it into the cannelloni – push the cannelloni tub into the mixture and then towards the side of the mixing bowl, keep gathering it up and pushing it to the side until it fills the tube.

Place some of the cooked tomatoe sauce in the bottom of a dish and lay the canelloni on top, then cover with tomatoe sauce, if you have some grated cheese then put that on top – I don’t, I don’t usually make my tomato sauce as Tesco value pasta sauce is 34p, which is the same price as a tin of tomatoes, so it’s cheaper to buy the sauce. We have two tubes each and I will make enough for two days, we just eat the same the next day, reheated with some salad.

Veggie Chilli with baked potato

You will need half a bag of quorn mince, an onion, tin of sliced mushrooms, one pepper, tin of kidney beans, some chilli powder and another jar of Tesco value pasta sauce. One large baked potato each.

Drain the mushrooms, finely chop one onion and one pepper, fry in as little oil as possible. When cooked, add the quorn mince and the chilli power. I usually use the Tesco chilli mix, they sell three sauce sachets for £1 and I usually have a stock in the cupboard. It thickens as well as flavouring. I then add the pasta sauce and keep adding water until I get the consistency I want. Quorn soaks up water and can be dry without enough sauce. When almost cooked, add the tinned kidney beans and allow to cook through. Serve with a baked potato

Bacon and Pea Risotto

You will need: one pack of Tesco Value ‘cooking bacon’ – it’s the offcuts from the rashers and a variety of shapes. 300g of Arborio rice (that’s still cheap!), one litre of veg stock, one onion and 100g of frozen peas. Chop and fry the onion, along with the finely chopped bacon, cook through – I add the rice and stock all in one go and keep stirring. We eat this with any cooked veg, usually cooked ‘squeaky’ beans.

Friday night Special – egg, chips and beans!

Homemade chips, an egg each and a tin of beans between us. We always ‘pad’ out our budget with something really cheap in the week.

I’m sure everyone on a budget is noticing the rise in prices. I can only imagine that we shall eat meat as a treat and stick to veggie meals most of the time, supplemented by fish (tinned!) and seasonal.


10 thoughts on “Menu Planning and budgetting.

  1. We love a chips egg and beans night – hubby fave! The price of food is crippling at the moment – I have a great shop near me that you would love. I think it works in conjunction with the big supermarkets to help reduce the amount of food that they waste. They sell some realy cheap but top quality food. I get lots of Waitrose Organic things from them – at daft prices. You have to have a card to shop there as the supermarkets – particularly M&S are very strict on who the allow them to sell to. With huby being a policeman, we can have a card. Love your recipes. xxx


  2. Im glad someone else thinks the rising food prices are shocking,I have managed to get the weekly shop from £50+ down to £38 this week.I only recently discovered your blog,have found it dead useful 🙂


  3. lately there is a big jump in food prices, even basics, it is hard to keep to strict budget especially when prices keep jumping about, when ever i see yellow labelled good food or offers i stock up to feed my lot


  4. Food prices are ridiculous at the moment..thank god for our allotments..also my daughter works at sainsbury on the meat and fish counter..she gets us and herself plus 2 more sisters as much reduced stuff as she can..but just lately there is a huge queue at the end of her shift ..people wanting the reduced stuff too..we love veggie nights but just lately we have more and more of them..going to flash a smile at my butcher to see if he'll do me a deal..


  5. Have you tried making your own ricotta? Its a useful thing to do if you have milk 'on the turn' and the residual 'whey' is fab for making scones/soda bread. [I have a recipe on my blog]

    You are right, food prices ARE rising significantly

    blessings x


  6. Thank you for some veggie recipes. It doesn't help that I can't tolerate Quorn. Makes me blow up like a balloon, though soya is ok. But at the moment the IBS is preventing me from eating anything! Still, could do with a bit of weight loss. (See, I try to look for the positives in all things!) xxx


  7. You aren't kidding about the rise in food prices! Just a little pack of diced ham has gone up from $2.50 to $3.34 a pound. Instead of dividing it into four packs for the freezer to use with pizza and flavorings later, I'm dividing it into five or six packets. A plain ham is the same price, so the diced works out better since I don't have to cut away fat from a larger piece. Cherries for fruit salad will no longer be a weekly item. Their price hasn't gone up (YET!), but I have to cut the little extras to accommodate the necessities that are going up. A fluffy salad with whipped topping will be a treat for Thanksgiving this week. Bananas are still good value so we eat them and save canned fruit for the end of the week when the bananas are gone. We did see a drop in canned pumpkin, but unbleached flour has not dropped for the holidays. I'm anxious to see if they will run a special just for Thanksgiving week. . . . . . Keep up the good work! ~Liz


  8. Prices rise weekly here in Canada too. It is hard not to worry about the elderly and those on fixed incomes. I am seeing more and more the value of stocking up when things are on sale. Your meals look delicious!


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