In an effort to give myself a bit of inspiration in planning our frugal meals, I have been taking a fresh look at some blogs and resources online. Here are my five favourite blogs and websites for cheap meal ideas.
Lesley’s blog is packed full of cheap meal ideas, including 10 meal plans to enable you to feed yourself and your family for around £1 a day each. There is a lot of vegetarian food in the plans, but some meat as well.
The food is pretty basic (although very healthy), but if you are on a really tight budget the cheap meal ideas here will be very helpful.
BBC Good Food
If you want some more exciting cheap meal ideas, you can’t beat the budget food section of the BBC Good Food website. The ingredients in these recipes might cost slightly more, but many are still very frugal. I use this site a lot. Roasted aubergine and tomato curry sounds promising and I have made the prawn pho (using cheapest frozen prawns) several times. I substitute all of the fresh herbs and spices with dried, which makes it a lot cheaper. You could leave the prawns out or substitute with a bit of cooked chicken.
Utterly Scrummy Food
Michelle at Utterly Scrummy makes gorgeous budget food. Her Instagram page is a joy to behold as everything looks so delicious. Michelle’s vegetarian meal plan is very good for me. I don’t eat meat (although I still eat fish). However, she uses meat in her cheap meal ideas as well, which Mr S appreciates.
This is a lovely food blog for families as it has lots of ideas for children, such a party food and snacks. There is also a lot of advice on using up leftovers – great for those of us trying to reduce food waste!
Diary of a Frugal Family
Cass at Diary of a Frugal Family is an immensely creative person. Amazingly she works full time as well as bringing up her young family. I don’t know how she fits it all in. Anyway, she has some really nice and varied cheap meal ideas, including a lot of adaptations of Slimming World recipes. Check out her frugal food section.
Cooking on a Bootstrap
I debated whether or not to include this one. I’m really not keen on a lot of Jack’s newer recipes. However, the classic early ones still feature and I make them regularly so it would have been unfair not to include Cooking on a Bootstrap in my top five.
There is a lot of vegan and vegetarian food. Jack is now fully vegan, but her frugal recipes including meat and fish still feature. The food is still carefully costed and super thrifty; great for those of us on a tight budget. Creamy mustard chicken is one of Mr Shoestring’s favourites and I really like the mushroom chasseur.
There are many more fantastic blogs and sites with fabulous cheap meal ideas. What are yours?