So. I was just wondering if you could share some of your favs as u need to make large sweeping changes to my budget and since I’ve been taken off of my adhd meds and anti depressants after a bout of serotonin syndrome 2 weeks ago my impulsively got completely out of control and I’ve put myself in a hole and figured, with your guys help, I can make sweeping changes to my spending habits by asking you to outline some of your fav easy and affordable (not neccearily super budget as I plan to do this from next months payday onward as I’ve already ran myself into the ground this month!!) It’s something I’ve been meaning to do in a while but planning is not my strong suit and I go almost completely on instinct (and not good instinct)and impulses which is something I need to overcome and figured having a bunch of stuff laid out here would give me structure (my counsellor explained the same)
So for work lunches and dinner - go
No dietary restraints for me. Just don’t like fish or mushrooms
I have very limited freezer and fridge space so. I also have no supermarkets near me and need to walk 5 miles round trip to lidl unless I go after work and the whole walk back is uphill so deffo no bulk shopping
Thanks in advance I’m hoping this will help me be better with money as I can’t go through the extreme poverty again as I’m in day 3 of it now and its BRUTAL and need to really hammer home some lifestyle changes by fundamentally breaking and rewiring my brain as I suspect I’ll need the support I can get coming off of my meds which helped somewhat keep the above in check. The first week off I spent all my money
Chickpea/lentil curries are the absolute best imo. Can normally get some decent spice mixes from a cornershop for very cheap then just onion, garlic, a tin of tomatoes and rice to make a reliably tasty, healthy, cheap dinner
1 cup red lentils
2 cloves garlic
Bunch of kale or spinach
Salt, pepper, (optional other spices you like)
In a big saucepan put the lentils, 2.5 cups of water, chopped up garlic, salt, pepper, spices. Cook until lentils are all soft and mushy. At the end drop the kale/spinach on top, cover with lid and leave for 5 mins
Meanwhile fry the onion until brown. Add to lentil and kale, mix and serve. Good with paratha
Not really a recipe, more a suggestion. For a simple stir fry, whatever veg you have in (or a stir fry mix) with two tbsp of soy sauce, one tbsp of white wine vinegar, and half a tbsp of sweet chilli sauce. Stir frys are great because you can pretty much throw in anything you have in or find in reduced sections. And they only take a few minutes.
Pesto and roasted veg (need pesto and veg, maybe extra parm or a garish like nuts or balsamic glaze)
Pasta al limone (need cream, butter, parm, lemon)
Carbonara (need egg, parm, bacon/pancetta - parm etc isn’t cheap but does last a good few meals)
One i sort of made up myself, just start with usual onions/garlic base, add some cherry tomatoes, cook until they’re starting to break down, mix in some chopped bacon and cook til it’s all cooked through (I add mushrooms too but you could easily do diced peppers etc)
also what I made last night - chorizo bean stew. A bit more costly up front but for an hours work it does enough for 4 meals - so as long as you can store that it’s very worth it.
Going off Tesco prices, I make that £7-8 for everything minus spices and not including wine since that isn’t essential
Chop up and fry a chorizo ring
Remove meat, cook onion and garlic in the fat (I add butter here too cos yolo)
Stir in and cook some tomato paste
100m red wine if you have it, cook down (or a few splashes of balsamic vinegar, or skip entirely)
200-300ml beef stock, can of chopped tomatoes, add back chorizo
Add 1 or 2 red peppers, cut into long slices
Cook for 15 mins
Add two cans of beans of your choice - butter, kidney, cannellini - cook for 5 mins
Stir in some spinach for a minute
Season as you go as you feel, with pepper and paprika and chilli and herbs etc. Usually serve with some small potatoes that I microwave for 4-5 mins to cook a little, then quarter and fry until crispy in a pan (stick these on at the stage when the stew is just bubbling fo 15 mins), and serve with garlic herb sauce. Basically makes for semi-patatas bravas side dish
do you have a slow cooker? if so, a pork shoulder steak, (the thick ones, abotu 4 for £3.50 at most), done in there is easily the best flavour to effort ratio you’ll come across.
just season it with salt/pepper, then a dollop of bbq sauce in the bottom of the slow cooker, then put your shoulder steak in, make sure the bottom of it is covered in sauce, another dollop on top to make sure the whole thing is covered. then 4+ hours on low, and serve with some veg or rice or whatever.
Sweet potato topped with hummus is a really cheap and easy meal. You just roast a decent sized sweet potato for 40 mins after slathering it in olive oil and seasoning, then halve it and put a nice thick layer of hummus on top then a drizzle of virgin olive oil (chilli oil would work too). Depends how strict your budget is but feta on top is magic.
Omelette with feta and virgin olive oil is also really lovely if you need to use up the feta.
Sainsbury’s and Morrisons do Nissin demae ramen noodles - they’re 55p each and the beef and sesame ones are really nice, just 3 mins in a pan with boiling water, add the seasoning packet and you’re done. you can add some carrot/egg/mushrooms and a bit of soy sauce for a bit more bulk/nutrition. I have a whole storage thing on top of my fridge just for these.