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    cheap, easy family meals
    • #1
    • 30th Nov 06, 4:49 PM
    cheap, easy family meals 30th Nov 06 at 4:49 PM
    Not being the best cook in the world I can't just throw a meal together. If anybody has any recipes for easy meals, not necessarily cheap but so I won't have to go and buy any ingredients that can only be used for this one meal. Everyday recipes would be great, I have recently done a successful shepherds pie that all my 3 kids will eat. I am no good with recipe books as I need things explaining simply, especially cooking meat as I am always unsure about whether it is cooked or not (I am vegetarian and so don't want to sample it) Thanks
Page 1
  • TKP
    • #2
    • 30th Nov 06, 5:19 PM
    • #2
    • 30th Nov 06, 5:19 PM
    Hi, I posted a recipe on the Storecupboard food thread - it's easy, tasty and quite cheap. From BBC Goodfood magazine

    Feeds 4 - easily halved or doubled

    Tuna Melt potato wedges

    750g frozen potato wedges
    4 tbsp mayonnaise
    1 small onion chopped small
    100g grated cheese
    2 x 160g cans tuna steaks OR 1 pack back bacon chopped and cooked

    1. Heat oven to 220C.

    2. Tip the potato wedges onto a large baking sheet, ensuring they sit in a single layer. Bake for 10 minutes.

    3. Meanwhile, mix together the mayonnaise, onion, cheese and tuna OR bacon.

    2. Tip the potato wedges into an ovenproof dish and spoon the mixture over the top. Pop back into the oven for a further 12 minutes, until bubbling.
  • TKP
    • #3
    • 30th Nov 06, 5:19 PM
    • #3
    • 30th Nov 06, 5:19 PM
    Oops, just seen you are vegetarian - sorry. Can substitute the meat with tofu or butternut
  • tallulah beaulah
    • #4
    • 30th Nov 06, 8:11 PM
    • #4
    • 30th Nov 06, 8:11 PM
    I know you said you don't want recipe books, but have you seen Rose Elliot's "Cheap and Easy" cookery book? She's a vegetarian cookery writer and this book is full of great family recipes, like pasta bakes, a savory bread and butter pudding, rice dishes and some delicious simple desserts like crumble.

    I've had this book for about 10 years and swear by it, everything in it is very simple, with straightforward ingredients and easy explanations. I'm using it to plan meals for the whole of december, trying to squeeze down our food spending, and it's really helped. It's not exciting fancy food, but good everyday stuff.
    "Then, when every last cent
    Of their money was spent,
    The Fix-it-Up Chappie packed up
    And he went."

    Dr Seuss
  • LJM
    • #5
    • 30th Nov 06, 9:45 PM
    • #5
    • 30th Nov 06, 9:45 PM
    the tuna melt potato wedges sound nice will put that on my list for my meal planner
    Is loving life right now,yes I am a soppy fool who believes in the simple things in life
    • Counting_Pennies
    • By Counting_Pennies 30th Nov 06, 10:03 PM
    • 3,929 Posts
    • 3,773 Thanks
    • #6
    • 30th Nov 06, 10:03 PM
    • #6
    • 30th Nov 06, 10:03 PM
    Stew is fab this time of year.

    Just brown some chunks of beef, I find braising steak is best. Then add an onion and brown with it and chunks of carrot or other root veg and pour over water and cook on hob or low/medium oven for a couple of hours.

    Bung in some jacket potatoes in the oven and you have a very tasty meal. You mention you are vegie yourself but do meat for your kids, and for this no testing of meat is required because it has been cooked for sooooo long!

    hope that helps
  • pizzaboy
    • #7
    • 30th Nov 06, 10:43 PM
    • #7
    • 30th Nov 06, 10:43 PM
    One really easy thing to make if you have nothing in the fridge,is just cooked pasta ,lemon,black pepper and olive oil.really nice especially with fresh lemon and cheap as chips.
    • squeaky
    • By squeaky 1st Dec 06, 7:26 AM
    • 13,808 Posts
    • 15,843 Thanks
    • #8
    • 1st Dec 06, 7:26 AM
    • #8
    • 1st Dec 06, 7:26 AM
    You'll need to cherry pick and adapt the recipes in the links here, substituting quorn or nut loaf or something whereever you see meat in a dish - but there are loads of ideas...

    - Cheapest cake to feed six
    - Cheapest meal
    - Feed six for £1.62
    - Full cupboards
    - Got £1 and hungry
    - Store cupboard Challenge
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    • yummymummy79
    • By yummymummy79 1st Dec 06, 1:12 PM
    • 475 Posts
    • 1,096 Thanks
    • #9
    • 1st Dec 06, 1:12 PM
    • #9
    • 1st Dec 06, 1:12 PM
    We have got a couple of favourites:

    Tuna Pasta Bake (although does use sachet of sauce so cheating a bit but still cheap - costs us no more than £2 for 2 and a half people)
    1 x sachet Colmans Tuna Pasta Bake Sauce
    1 or 2 tins tuna
    Sweetcorn (optional, couple of handfuls would do it)
    Pasta (any variety)
    3/4 pint milk
    Basically cook pasta, mix sauce with milk, bring to boil then turn down, add tuna and sweetcorn to warm through, put pasta back in, stir for a couple of mins thendone. You can then transfer to oven dish and put cheese and crushed crisps on top to bake, but I never bother with that bit. Amounts of ingredients are a bit vague, but I do change it depending on how hungry we are.


    Sausage and Bean bake
    2/3 sausages per person (depending on appetite!), could use veggie instead
    Few rashers bacon (optional)
    Tin of baked beans
    Tin of flagolet beans (or could use 2 x baked beans)
    Tin of chopped tomatoes
    Tomato puree
    1 onion
    2 cloves garlic
    Bit of mustard

    Cook sausages and bacon until just about done and chop into bite size pieces. Cook onions and garlic for a few mins until soft, add tomatoes, beans, puree, herbs and mustard. Cook for a few mins, add bit of water to adjust sauce consistency if necessary. Add in sausages and bacon, cook for a few more mins to finish off.
    Yummy with mashed potatoes.
    Last edited by yummymummy79; 01-12-2006 at 1:15 PM.
    Little lady arrived 13/12/11
  • carolt
    Similar to tuna pasta bake - cod pasta bake
    Very easy, uses one pan and one oven dish, takes about half an hour start to finish.

    - put pasta on. Put oven on medium/high heat eg 200 degrees

    - put cod fillets/steaks/cheap defrosted frozen rectangles (can use any cheap white fish eg coley, pollack etc, all fine) in the biggish dish you're going to use for the pasta bake later and bake in oven while pasta is cooking.

    - turn off pasta and drain

    - take dish with cooked fish fillets in (will have turned from translucent to white and probably leaked a bit of fluid and should flake easily when done, but even if a tiny bit under/overcooked won't matter)

    - flake fish fillets with fork in dish

    - tip pasta into dish

    -tip enough tomato pasta sauce from a jar onto mix to coat it, and mix all together

    - grate cheese on top

    - put back in oven for about 15 mins to melt/brown cheese so it goes crispy on top. Voila!

    Can make own pasta sauce easily with cooking onion/tinned tomatoes/herbs and optional peppers/courgettes - but the bought sauce is quicker and probably no more expensive and certainly a lot less hassle - I use Tesco's Healthy Eating jar at about 63p which my kids love (they prefer the homemade, but when I can't be bothered....).
  • LJM
    quote from counting pennies

    Stew is fab this time of year

    i find that too i just bung everything in the slow cooker in the morning and its done i love stew hmmmm
    Is loving life right now,yes I am a soppy fool who believes in the simple things in life
  • Beamish
    A Nice Munchy
    A nice munchy to keep in the fridge which you can also serve with a baked potato is...Tuna/Sweetcorn & Pasta

    Cook Pasta and chill it down , add a tin of Tuna and some sweetcoen, add half a diced onion with some garlic and Salt & Pepper and mix altogether.

    Cover with cling film and Chill off in the fridge

  • Beamish
    Another good filling meal is Bubble & Squeak!

    Mash together cooked spuds with left over cabbage(or any left over veg) & Salt & Pepper, fry it all together in a a frying pan till brown, serve with a fried/poached egg, the kids (if not veggies) could have it with cold meat

    • tiff
    • By tiff 2nd Dec 06, 12:32 AM
    • 6,551 Posts
    • 8,597 Thanks
    How about egg and chips? Mmmmmm
    A budget is telling your money where to go instead of wondering where it went. - Dave Ramsey
  • jcr16
    what about hm pizza. if u have a bread maker it is even easier imo. and then u can add any toppings u have. it is so filling and to make it go further u could make some wedges or jacket spud. my mum makes her pizza sometime with just tom sauce on base , onion , sliced fresh tomatos and cheese. and she said it is so yummy but so simple. ( my dad doesn't like fussy food )

    or make some pancakes fnd dill with whatever u like roll up cover in cheese sauce and bake for 30 min's. and serve with jacket spud. i often fill with mushroom , beansprouts , sliced pepper , chicken . but anything can be added really.

    thinking about it , how about jacket spud then scoop out the middle and mix the potato with cheese and cooked mince beef , and add back into the potato skin and cook again. or mix with tuna instead of mince.
    Very proud mummy to 4 wonderful children aged 8,7 and 4 and 1 months. And our beautiful little angel in heaven she will never be forgotten .My children and Husband are my world.I'm a sahm and enjoying every minute to the full even if sometimes it can seem a bit tough x
  • Sarahpuggy

    I have a lovely vegetarian lasagne recipe, and its so easy and yummy!

    To make for 6 people, we do the following.

    1 Aubergine - approx 80p.
    2 Courgettes - 60p
    Loads of tomatoes - 1
    fresh egg pasta - 1.20
    Bechamel sauce -sometimes we cheat and buy it - 1.30
    Mozzarella and Parmesan - 2.20
    Fresh Basil -60p

    Total = 7.70 and it serves 6 so = 1.20 each! We make it for two of us and have it the next day for lunch with a jacket potato.

    We layer all the veggies in the bottom, add salt and pepper with some balsamic vinegar and fresh basil, cover each layer with the pasta and bechamel sauce and mozarella, then finish off the top layer with the parmesan so it goes crispy, bake for about 40 mins! mmm yummy!
  • gratefulforhelp
    ok, you will need veggies, rice and 7 thai spice which you get in spice section, lasts ages so cheap per meal.
    put veggies chopped into 3 cm ish chunks into oven dish, oil on them or fry-light if you are trying to lose weight, and 3 tsp spice mix, make the oven hot, to roast. Add quorn pieces to this if you like.
    put rice on to boil. In the last few(4) minutes of rice boiling, put the (clean) eggs, still in their shells in the rice pan so they become just hard boiled.
    drain rice, put on plate, with roast spicy veg and quorn on top, shell the eggs and put a quartered egg on top of each plate.
    This is adapted from a waitrose recipe. You can use any veggies, but onion, courgette, mushroom, tomato, leek, pepper, carrot all work well, just use what you have and is cheap.
    Please do not confuse me with other gratefulsforhelp. x
  • hob
    cheap and easy recipes pls!
    hi guys i have just started to get in to cooking, im and anything but not a domestic godess lol any way just wondering if u had anything to sujest before i go shoping for the week? so i can make my meal plan..... thanks in advance.
    • Kevie192
    • By Kevie192 11th Jun 10, 6:44 PM
    • 1,157 Posts
    • 2,570 Thanks
    Have a look at this thread. There are loads of links on there to excellent recipes.

    There are also many many thread on here about the same question you have asked. Try looking through a few pages or doing a search and I'm sure you will find all the info you need.


    • Penelope Penguin
    • By Penelope Penguin 11th Jun 10, 6:46 PM
    • 17,087 Posts
    • 132,754 Thanks
    Penelope Penguin
    hi guys i have just started to get in to cooking, im and anything but not a domestic godess lol any way just wondering if u had anything to sujest before i go shoping for the week? so i can make my meal plan..... thanks in advance.
    Originally posted by hob
    Pasta, eggs, seasonal vegetalbles are cheap and easy There's more in this thread; I'll merge this later to keep ideas together.
    Sheep, pigs, hens and bees on our Teesdale smallholding
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