Aussies Living Simply

Weekly Frugal Menu

Home Forums OVER THE BACK FENCE ALS Challenge Series Weekly Frugal Menu

Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 30 total)
  • Author
  • #338709

    I think the thing i get the most uses out of is a whole chicken. Roast chicken, chicken sandwiches or curry for something to use up the rest of the meat then chick soup/ stock with the carcass.


    Thanks Sprite! Lentils are easy peasy. Hide them in pasta sauce, curries and soups, make patties/burgers, etc. I use a lot of red lentils as they cook to nothing best of all. 🙂 They’re cheap, filling, easy-to-store protein and fibre.

    Ways I re-use food is by cooking in bulk. A bulk pasta sauce goes over spaghetti and the rest into the freezer. Next week that goes in lasagne. The week after it makes ‘fake’ risotto. And so on. I only made one pot of sauce, but it feeds us 3 times (not in one week though, ick). When I make curry (vego) I serve it with rice, then with couscous, then in a pie with mashed potato top. When I make soup I freeze what’s left and serve it again. It’s still soup though. :p

    We’ve just started eating chicken again. Roasted 2 roosters on Saturday, froze the extra meat for a future meal, used the carcass for stock for Sunday’s soup. For us (large family, small roosters), that was about the limit of our re-using.

    Leftovers for lunch every day. We base our lunches on what’s left from the night before. Never waste anything that way!

    My latest challenge is getting into the mindset of using what I have. Instead of thinking “we need….” I am trying to think of alternative ingredients which I already have (or hopefully have growing – even better!) After not having as productive a garden as I’m used to for the past 1.5 years, it’s hard to shake the shopping mindset now. I need to get back to basing our meals on what’s in the garden.


    I try and organise my whole months menu in one go and then do abig monthly shop.(have to hide the list from Hubby as he hates to know whats for tea the Friday after next!!) But our favourite cheapy meal is Egg and Potato casserole. Boil 1 egg and a Large potato per person.Slice and layer Egg- Potato-cheese sauce-till used up finishing with sauce then sprinkle with cheese and breadcrumbs. Bake at 180 for about 30-40 mins serve with salad or veg.


    Ok here is a weeks menu on the $20 meat pack I buy at the butchers (who is closing down as the landlord wants the shop back after at least 30yrs and rent everywhere else is too expensive) there is only 2 of us but I aim to feed at least four so we have 2 lunch protions or more for the freezer.

    The meat pack contains *weights are estimated*

    -500g mince

    -500g BBQ steak

    -500g pork chops

    -500g thick sausages

    -1 #10 chicken


    Day 1 spaghetti bolognaise, with grated zuccini and carrot and a tin of corn into the mix, generally shop bought sauce until the tomatoes grow.

    Day 2 Beef stir fry with noodles plenty of veg, with some sort of sauce made from various condiments in the fridge and homemade sweet chilli sauce.

    Day 3 Sweet and sour pork on rice lots of veg, shop sauce

    Day 4 Sausage casserole loads of root type veg with homemade gray/tomato sauce.

    Day 5 Roast chicken with veg.

    Day 6 Chicken noodle soup made from chicken carcas and some wings floating around in the freezer.

    Day 7 Macaroni cheese with a tin of tuna and corn mixed in.

    I need to start putting meat into smaller packs in the frezer to make myself stretch the meat further (I can go without but Mr RM can’t) its easy to slap a chop in the grill and do some frozen veg with cheese (my slack cooking night) but it really doesn’t make it go far and with the prices the further you can make it go the better. Looking forward to having more veg in the garden so I can make most things spur of the moment.

    The other thing I started was writing out meal ideas with 2 columns beside it one with fresh ingredients and the other with cupboard staples. Whenever I wondered what to cook I could look at what fresh ingredients I had on hand and then decide what I could make. Just to avoid making the same things all the time.

    Sorry for the long post:shy:


    Well we could of made a no 20 chook do 6 people for 4 meals but hubby and DD1 chewed all the meat of the carcass and gave the dogs the bones… ( :awch: for chewing bones and :@ for giving the bones to the dogs!! )

    Firstly we had Roast chicken and vegies (smaller portions to what I used to give them but lots more vegies!! :tup: )

    The next night we had chicken, corn, capsicum, triffid shallot and cheesey fritters.

    Then I made a curry and rice with whatever meat I had left.

    I was then going to make a chicken and noodle soup with the carcass but by then it was history…. :p

    I put Uniboys portions in the freezer for him to take back with him, except for the fritters that is… Though he did say he would give them a go!! 😮


    7 days straight of Pumpkin spoup!!! 😐


    Spoup!! I’m sure it doesn’t taste that bad :rip: 😆


    A great idea Sprite. Let’s make this one an ongoing challenge so that people can try out different ideas and post them as they can. I really like the idea of a weekly menu all costed out – it would make the shopping easier and also easier for people to see the advantage of cooking this way.

    Around here we make fridge soup – I’m sure many people know it already. You get all those things that have been hanging around in the fridge too long, chop them up and add some herbs and stock and simmer for a while until it is all done. Add bones from another meal or beans if you wish or top with cheese or egg when serving for a hearty meal. If you make enough it is good for a few meals.


    Do you put in mashed potato and pumpkin into fridge soup or is it mainly uncooked vegies that goes into fridge soup?


    well, I made a roast lamb last night, and 4 of us had dinner. 3 lunches for DH were boxed up, a sarnie for DS this morning. The plan was to use the rest for more sarnies for DS, some in the omelettes tonight and some in the fried rice on Friday, and possibly some in the pizza on the weekend, and some for my lunches with DD. BUT, I just discovered the container that the roast was in, with no bone :confused: DD got hungry, had a gnaw on it, and left it on the floor for the DOGS!! :@:@:@:@:@

    AAAARRRRRGGGGGHHHHHHHH!!!!!!! 4 year olds!!!!! :@:@


    Chezza wrote:

    Do you put in mashed potato and pumpkin into fridge soup or is it mainly uncooked vegies that goes into fridge soup?

    Just about anything will work – I have used a mixture of cooked and uncooked veges and meats and I have also used mashes. It’s all good – never comes out the same way twice though! You can add pasta or leftover cooked rice to it as well. The trick is to make sure that the cooked stuff doesn’t clash – no mixing Asian stir-fry with Italian pasta and expecting it to get along!

    If you have enough leftover mash, consider a fridge pie – same principal, different method: cut up leftover veges and meat (optional) cook in saucepan with worcesterchire sauce, salt and pepper to taste. When done, fold through mash and place in pie tin (you can also put the mash on top of the veges in the pie tin). Top with pastry (we use homemade shortcrust but you can use bought stuff if you want). Bake until pastry is done.


    Great thread, :tup: thanks.



    I know you have all well and truly moved on from this, – i was just going through old ones. I am so impressed, I spend ALOT of money on food, hungry male teenager, apart from only just starting to grow my own, i would be keen to hear other ways to cut down.

    I am vegetarian (eat fish, so not quite accurate) and the rest of my family meat eaters, it can be tricky sometimes and I dont always have the interest or energy to cook two different meals.



    Fridge soup is a favourite here, and also weeklong stew – as you remove a serving tonight, you add a new ingredient so tomorrow’s tastes different, and so on. By the end of the week you have a completely different beast to what you started with but it has developed that deep flavour that only comes with mature seasoning.

    Another one is to choose an ingredient like a hen, roasted, the left0ver meat shredded into a casserole base, then the carcase boiled for a rich soup stock …


    I don’t make fridge soup but I guess I make fridge curry:lol:

    When I cook sausages I always cook more as DS#2 takes them to school and eats them for arvo tea or such. When I decide to use these left over sausages for curry I add all the left over veg from other meals as well.

    I usually have to use a new onion as there isn’t usually leftovers of that one. The more mashed spud I use the less I have to thicken it:tup: Sweet potato and pumpkin give a lovely rich curry colour. I have also added tinned tomatoes leftover and some salsa as well- went down the hatch no probs.

    Curried sausage is a fav of DS#2 – he usually asks for that or yorkshire puddings for his birthday meal (we do not do the meat bit when we have yorkshire puddings – makes a really cheap meal – and he eats leftovers next day reheated with some gravy:tup:)

    When there are 6 of us and we get stranded here cos of rain you soon become creative with next to nothing:tongue:

Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 30 total)
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.