Easy Meal Planning on a Budget!

I have to confess to being one of those irritatingly jolly people who seem to enjoy the mundane jobs in life - I like tidying, I love cleaning, and I'm positively passionate about organising a cupboard or two.
But one of the things that makes me toe-curlingly ecstatic is meal planning - especially if I have parameters to work within.
What I mean by parameters could be a diet restriction (no cheese this week) or visitors coming (must remember the Branston for Uncle David - he loves a late night ham sandwich).
The best challenge for me as a homemaker - for that is what I is - a meal plan with a budget constraint.
Now you're talking, sister!!

Our dietary restrictions - for those new to this blog - I am gluten free and vegan, Man Wonderful eats mostly vegetarian foods.
Our budgetary restrictions - I don't want to give supermarkets any money I don't have to as long as we are eating well.
Any other considerations - I am losing weight slowly but surely and am enjoying this so would like to continue for a while longer.

So here is my meal planning for the next ten days:

A) Mushroom pasta
     Gluten free pasta, cooked and mixed with vegan low fat garlic herb soft 'cheese'. Mushrooms           sliced and cooked in veg stock and stirred through.
B) Veg stir fry
     Summer veg sliced and stir fried in veg stock with 1 tbsp soy sauce. Served with brown rice.
C) Roasted veg
     Courgettes, aubergine, tomatoes and onions sliced and roasted in a little olive oil.  Served with half fat mozzarella or sliced vegan 'cheese'.
D) Jacket potatoes with beans and 'cheese', served with salad.

E) Stuffed peppers with brown rice, pine nuts, chopped spring onions, cherry tomatoes and feta or 'cheese'. Roasted in the oven.
F) Veg chilli. Sliced onions and mushrooms sautéed in veg stock. Add in fava or kidney beans, tomato purée, tinned tomatoes, chilli powder. Serve with brown rice.
G) Quinoa salad. Cooked quinoa layered with sliced tomatoes, spring onions, avocado, black olives and pine nuts.

H) Pan fried salmon/ veggy burger, served with jacket potato and steamed veggies.
I) Lentil and veg stew. 

These recipes are easy, very tasty and filling, and are adaptable if you have guests for dinner midweek.
I have everything I need on a list that I print out, and simply enter a quantity next to how much I need to buy when I shop. If I have enough of something for the nine days plan, I cross it through.
I always check the store cupboard before shopping, and cook ahead (e.g, brown rice) for the next day where I can.
All food is prepped when I get back from shopping, and is in the fridge ready to use. 
One lot of preparation for the week.

Do you plan your meals ahead?
Where does this fall down/ what do you do every time?


  1. It all looks absolutely delicious!
    I'm on a mission to de-clutter the freezers so right now I'm spending very little. The allotment is producing veg now as well - delicious!
    J x

  2. I'm not vegetarian or vegan or even GF but would still come round and enjoy all those meals!!

  3. Tracey, you are an angel. I really don't like meal planning but you've given me some good ideas there. X


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