A Sunday roast is well worth the investment for the meals it’ll make for you in this 7-day menu…
Investing your time and money in a 4lb roast, plus doing a wee bit more cooking on the weekend will set you up for a week of quick, easy and healthy meals.
This page contains the latest version of my Sunday roast weekly menu, but as I learn more on my mission to feed my family the very best food on a tight budget, I’ll keep on updating it – so pop back from time-to-time to be sure you’re reading the very latest version. You can also buy my original 7-day menu ebook here, which contains umpteen tips to help you, together with a fully costed shopping list.
Just a quick note: This menu assumes that you’ll be doing your weekly shop on a Friday morning.
Sunday roast menu – lunches, dinners and suppers
The lunches here assume that the kids are at school/nursery and there’s someone at home. If you work, set aside time to batch-cook your lunches over the weekend so that you can take something nice to work each day to either microwave or serve from a flask. (You can then warm up meals for your flask every morning – easy peasy.)
Good ol’ beans on toast – nothing too demanding after a hefty shopping trip!
Veggie spaghetti bolognese served with baked potatoes or rice. (Find out why I prefer not to serve pasta here.) Fry onions, garlic, mushrooms, peppers (and any other veg you’d like), and after 5 minutes, tip in 2 tins of chopped tomatoes, a handful of dried lentils (for extra protein) and simmer for 10 minutes more.
Save at least half of your Bolognese sauce, and separate your reserved amount into 2 portions. One will go in the freezer to give you a ready-made sauce to use in the future for either a pasta dish, cottage pie filling, the base for a chilli, or the filling for a lasagne – or you could even just use it on a baked potato one lunchtime!
Save one portion of your Bolognese sauce in the fridge, ready to use tomorrow…
Pitta pizza’s. Toast your pittas, and then cut them completely in half so that you’ve got at least two oval-sides of pitta per adult. Then, spread each one with tomato puree and add your toppings – mushrooms, onions, tinned mackerel, peppers, cheese – just as you would with a pizza. Place your pitta pizza’s under the grill for a couple of minutes until every thing is hot and bubbling.
Follow your pizza’s with a home-made cookie or brownie – well, it is the weekend after all!
Veggie lasagna with salad leaves: In a large dish, layer lasagne sheets and your defrosted Bolognese sauce (diluted further with an additional tin of chopped tomatoes).
Make cheese sauce in a small pan using a handful of grated cheese, a 2-3mm slice of butter off a typical block, a slosh of milk (enough to cover the pan base) and a level tablespoon of flour. When the sauce thickens (after only a minute or so!), pour it onto the top layer of your lasagne. Cook your lasagna for half an hour on 180 degrees.
Sunday roast: Choose a 4lb roast joint of your choice from your local butcher (I prefer turkey, but anything goes – although it is best not to eat too much red meat or too much meat with nitrites in it – i.e pork). Roast for 20 minutes per lb, plus an extra 20 minutes on top of that at 180 degrees, and make sure the juices run clear when you ‘spike’ it. Half an hour before it’s ready, spray a tray of roast veggies (potatoes, carrots, sweet potato) with olive oil and then bung them in the oven too. Meanwhile, steam some broccoli and cauliflower (the best way to cook soft veggies for the most vitamins), and make your own Yorkshire puddings.
Cook twice the veg you think you’ll need so that you can save some for bubble and squeak on Tuesday.
As it’s Sunday, it’s time to batch-cook loads of soup in the slow-cooker for next week’s working lunches. A really tasty soup can be made from an onion, 3-4 carrots, a clove of garlic, and some of your roast meat. Fry for around 5 minutes to soften the veg, and then add 1/3 of your roast meat joint (chopped into small pieces), and a pint of stock. Let everything simmer for about half an hour – great to do whilst you’re tackling the Sunday washing up!
Pour half of your mixture into a blender and blend until smooth. Transfer it back to the pan, stir everything together and add a handful of frozen veggies. Cook for 2-3 minutes longer and then leave to cool. Resisting the temptation to eat it all right now – separate your soup into 5 portions for your work lunches next week, placing 3 of them in the freezer – as cooked food can only last 2 days in the fridge. Take your home-made soup to work each day with a slice of home made bread. Delicious.
A nice and easy meal of sliced roast meat and cheese pittas with salad leaves. (Pittas make a nice change to sliced bread and are in-fact the best processed bread you can buy as they contain very few ‘mystery’ ingredients.)
For the adults:
Use 1/3 of your Sunday roast as the meat in a home-made curry with rice, saving some of your curry for the freezer – just make sure you add loads of veggies into the curry to make it go further.
To make a great curry, fry your meat for about 5 minutes, together with some onions, mushrooms, courgette, peppers – or any other veggies that you fancy. (Cauliflower works well in a curry too.) Then, add 2 tins of chopped tomatoes and a teaspoon of curry powder – no need for the jar versions with all their additives and sugar! Let your curry simmer for about half an hour whilst you cook the rice.
For the kids:
A healthy kids ‘lunchbox’ meal. You can see my ‘formula’ for this well-loved (and easy) meal here…
Grab something from the freezer – soup, chilli, bolognese sauce, stew, curry… anything that you’ve had left over from last week (and in this case, yesterday) that’s gone into the freezer – but, failing that, you could always use tinned beans for this meal. Serve with either sliced bread or a baked potato.
For the adults:
Pan-fried fish with bubble and squeak. If you choose a salmon fillet for this meal (to give you 2 portions), fry it in olive oil for around 5 minutes until cooked through. Then, using your leftover veggies from Sunday lunch, mash them and then microwave them until piping hot to use as bubble and squeak.
For the kids:
Either cheese pittas or cheese sandwiches. Serve with salad leaves (if you dare!), or at the very least, with crunchy carrot sticks.
Again, it’s the freezer to the rescue! Choose a home-made frozen meal on a baked potato.
For the adults:
Create a random stir-fry to use up any leftover veggies before you go shopping again this week. You’re bound to have maybe half a pepper, the remains of a courgette, a few mushrooms, a few carrots, and maybe even some broccoli left over, so get all of these used up, and serve your stir-fry with noodles.
For the kids:
Noodles cooked with a handful of small frozen veggies, topped with grated cheese.
Warm pittas filled with tinned fish (salmon, mackerel etc) and salad leaves.
Baked potatoes, baked beans and cheese.
For the adults:
Home made muesli – see the recipe here, with chopped fresh fruit, home made yogurt on top and a drizzle of real honey. Plus a large glass of water (see why it so important first thing, here), and a cup of fair trade coffee or tea.
For the adults:
The usual muesli, as you did throughout the week.
For the kids:
Fruit smoothies (simply because you’ve got more time at the weekend – and it’s great fun to get the kids involved in loading the blender!)
Cheese and mushroom omelette with tinned tomatoes and toast – just to make a change from the usual ‘egg-based course’ so that boredom doesn’t set in.
Serve the same breakfast drinks as usual – plus a glass of home squeezed juice, (not the carton stuff).
I personally think it’s important to eat in the evenings, otherwise you risk being so hungry by morning that it’ll be far too tempting to tip out a bowl of cereal in your urgency to get fed! In the evenings, treat yourself to a bowl of chopped fresh fruit and yogurt.
Total cost: £49.54*
*Whilst I’m doing my best to make sure the price of my cheap and healthy menus are up-to-date, it’s worth noting that food prices do fluctuate quite often, so please allow for a 10% difference in price from time-to-time. After all, the supermarkets will always make sure food costs more whenever there are school holidays!
Don’t run out of ingredients!
It pays to be portion-savvy when you’re on a budget, so have a read of this to be sure you’ll have enough food for the whole week.
Now because you’re bound to have some of the above foods already in your kitchen, you’ll find that you’ll probably have a few £s left over to allow you to buy non food items. I usually reserve £6 per week towards non food. It’s not much, but it is possible. Read this post to see how I cut costs on my non food shopping.
How to save more money whilst feeding your family on a budget…
- Weekly 7-day menus for your family that amount to no more than £50 per week.
- All about food – Where it comes from, what they put into it, how it gets from farm to fork, and why it should be organic, fair trade, local and seasonal.
- Eating healthily – My discoveries on what foods are best for us and what portions they should be served in, how best to cook and store foods, myth-busting on foods the media have convinced us are ‘healthy’, and any other health concerns when it comes to cooking and eating healthily.
- Simple recipes – together with a ‘cost per meal’, and cost of cooking.
- Making life easier – problem solving when it comes to fitting healthy food and extra cooking into a busy lifestyle.
- Honest reviews – book reviews, course reviews (from great courses I’ve attended like Love Food Hate Waste, CAPmoney and the Open University) and reviewing time-saving labour-saving gadgets that I’ve invested in from the money I’m saving on not buying processed foods.
- Shopping tips – tactics that help me beat the supermarkets at their own game so I can keep my hard-earned cash in my pocket, not theirs!
- Ebooks – whenever I have enough information on a particular subject, I’ll package it up into an ebook – great for you as you’ll have everything in one place at a super-cheap price of just £2, and great for me as it’ll help me to afford the hosting costs for this blog.
Or you can find out what the very latest posts are here to discover even more food for thought.