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Budget Friendly Meals

Today, I’m sharing with you 7 of my favourite low budget meals for a busy family. They are easy to prepare (read ‘quick’), and pretty cheap (read ‘I’d give Curtis Stone a run for his money’).  These are on my rotation over a few weeks, with a few others thrown in, depending on what’s happening that week and how busy I am.
These recipes are based on using little or no processed foods and fresh veg.  There might be some boring ones that you do all of the time, but there might be one or two that help you out, and that you can put into your own meal planning rotation.
WARNING: I didn’t take photos, and I didn’t write out exact quantities.  These recipes are for our family of 4, and generally provide an extra meal for my husband to take to work for lunch the next day!

1. Marinated Chicken with BBQ noodle stir fry

It doesn’t sound very inspiring, but is pretty easy!
Marinate chicken fillets in soy, garlic, plum sauce, honey
Chop some stir fry veg (we use carrot, zucchini, mushroom, capsicum)
Cook chicken on the BBQ grill
Cook veg on the BBQ hot plate
Combine and cook the egg noodles with the veg, adding some soy or sweet chilli sauce if your kids like it, to keep it a bit moist.

2. Chicken, veg and cous cous

Chop one onion
Chop about a kilo of chicken breast
Sauté onion and then chicken
Add about a cup of chicken stock
Add some chopped veg (we use carrot, zucchini, mushroom, capsicum, beans, broccoli)
Reduce it until it thickens, or use a teaspoon of cornflour mixed with water.
Boil 2 cups of chicken stock and add 1 cup of cous cous in a separate saucepan.
Add a knob of butter or some olive oil to moisten it
Serve with the chicken and veg.

3. Slow cooker beef casserole

(If you don’t have a slow cooker, you can cook this on low for a few hours stirring occasionally)
Chop an onion
Chop some chuck steak or other casserole beef
Toss the steak in some seasoned plain flour and seal in a fry pan until it is browned.
Add the onions to the slow cooker, and then the browned beef.
Throw in any chopped veg
Add a tin of chopped tomatoes
Add some Worcestershire sauce and a blob of oyster sauce
Cook until the meat is tender
Serve with a green salad and cous cous, or mash, or pasta, or no carbs.

4. Pumpkin soup

I don’t think we need a big ‘meaty’ meal each night, so occasionally I will serve some soup.  My eldest daughter likes it, the toddler is still a bit skeptical of soup!
Chop a pumpkin
Chop an onion and sauté with garlic in a large saucepan
Put the pumpkin in and add 2 cups of chicken of veg stock
Bring to the boil and simmer for 20 mins
Blitz.  If you want you can add more water, or some milk for a creamier finish.

5. Eggs and Bacon

A great simple meal that fills everyone up.
You can scramble, poach or fry the eggs
Serve them with or with bread!

6. Pesto Chicken Pasta

Saute 1 chopped onion with some garlic
Chop 1 kilo of chicken breast and add to the frypan to cook.
Add some chopped veg (mushrooms, zucchini)
Stir through some pesto, until everything is coated
If you want to make your own pesto, you will need
1 bunch of basil
garlic clove
large handful of pine nuts
cup of fresh grated parmesan
olive oil to thin it to your liking

Whiz it all up and add more olive oil as you like.

Serve it with some pasta

7. BBQ and Salad

This one is probably our favourite (least amount of dishes!)
Cook the BBQ meat (marinated thigh fillets, steak, chicken skewers)
Green salad
Dice some pumpkin or sweet potato and roast for 45 mins
Salad dressing

Once the pumpkin/ sweet potato is cooked, stir through the salad with the feta, so that it softens a little.  Add the dressing as you like!  Yum


So there you go.  My favourite budget family meals – they don’t have all the bells and whistles, but when you are feeding your family, and you just have to get it done, they work fine for me!

I’d love to know if you already use some of these or which one is your favourite!  Post a comment below.

Your Next Step

If you want some support to help fast track this process, or help you transition to Dubsado, then can book a  free systems audit with me so we can determine where to start, and what you need to get up and running with your workflows and systems.
systems audit, small business coaching
aerlie small business coach
Aerlie Wildy is a business designer. business coach and mother based in the Adelaide Hills. I specialise in designing and systemising business for growth. You can connect with me on Facebook, join my Chief Executive Entrepreneurs Facebook Group, check out my Youtube Channel or Pin with me on Pinterest.