Even today, a large pot of good food for four people can be cooked for less than 50 CZK. But tasty, cheap (and mostly meat-free) food cannot be eaten all the time. Especially since they are usually in short supply sufficient amount of protein and also meat is the most expensive raw material. It’s almost impossible to cook a full meal with meat and side dishes for this price.
Fortunately, there is a solution: you need to plan your menu for several days and think when buying. If you cleverly alternate expensive meat dishes with cheaper dishes made from legumes and seasonal vegetables during the week, it is not so difficult to reach 30 CZK per portion.
We will publish within the next week six recipes for quick and cheap family meals. You cook according to them lunches or hot dinners for a family of four during the entire working week so that the average amount per portion does not exceed 30 crowns (and one recipe is also for those who don’t really like some ingredients). How to save on food?
1. Plan well (and get the family involved)
On Sunday evening, prepare the menu for the following week. Each member of the family can comment on it and then fine-tune the final form together. Children are more willing to accept even less popular foods when they are involved in the planning and have a choice. Feel free to write down which ingredients you are missing (below you will find a complete shopping list), then during the week you will save time, nerves and money – you will no longer have to think about dinner among the shelves, which often ends up buying expensive semi-finished products.
2. Don’t be afraid to improvise
He will keep the prepared menu Budget within reason, but don’t take it as dogma. Be ready to respond to various events with discounts: create a folder with your favorite recipes and add to it constantly. File sharing that you can access from your phone is ideal. Then when you see cauliflower in action, you will remember e.g. cauliflower pancakes.
3. Shop smart
Events with discounts use, but wisely. Buy only what you are sure to use and where you can store it. Don’t be tempted by the sale prices of sweets. If you buy three packs of cookies at the original price of 28 CZK on sale for 17, it looks like you saved a nice 33 CZK. In reality, you spent 51 CZK on loads of sugar and unhealthy fats. You can bake a whole tray for a similar price Zucchini gingerbread with yogurtwhich you can shamelessly pack as a snack for children.
- You want numbers? I bought a whole chicken plus two quarters (2.20 kg) on sale for 180 CZK. After deboning, I had 600g of skinless chicken thighs and 600g of skinless chicken breasts. I had wings and skeletons with a lot of meat left over – I made 3.5 liters of thick chicken stock from them, then peeled them and got 300 g of cooked meat (for 5 portions of risotto). If I bought the breasts, thighs and skeletons separately, I would spend about 350 CZK.
4. Don’t be afraid to start cooking
You will save the most (and prepare the highest quality food) if you cook from basic ingredients. Think you can’t do it? You can find video tutorials for almost anything online!
It’s a great way to save on flour side dishes. You will pay about 120 CZK for a kilogram of chilled pieces, domestic ones cost 20. For 12 wheat tortillas it costs 15 crowns, in the store they ask for them almost a hundred. And his own soup noodles mean almost half of the savings compared to purchased ones.
Prefer dry legumes and frozen peas and corn over canned foods. to learn how to properly cook pulsesthat they don’t get bloated: you get a cheap source of quality vegetable protein.
When you come across a cheap fruit or vegetable, process it: preserves and pickles, dry and store in the freezer. Use seasonal vegetables as much as possible, they are not only healthy, but also adjust the food and make it cheaper.
5. Don’t spend and follow social networks
Buy only as much as you will actually use, and properly label any excess and put it in the freezer. Keep track of what you really have in your freezer and use up the food before it turns into an unsightly dried out lump.
Affordable family menu for the working week
So how do you prepare 28 portions of homemade food in 6 recipes for a total of 840 CZK (24 portions for a family of 4 + 4 portions left over for a visit, for example, or you can freeze them), for an average of 30 CZK per portion? (I also saved about 3.5 liters of chicken bone broth.)
Energy and labor costs are not included in the price, but I prepared the recipes in such a way that the cooking was as short and economical as possible and not too complicated. You can’t avoid work, but it certainly doesn’t have to be done by just one member of the household! I invited my thirteen-year-old son to the project: he succeeded bone the chicken according to the videofruit roll rolls and roasted cauliflower that he cooked himself.
- Chicken stew with homemade pieces – 6 servings
- Chicken risotto – 5 servings
- Pea porridge – 5 servings
- Chicken gyros – 4 portions
- Baked cauliflower – 4 servings
- Apple dumplings – 4 portions
We will be gradually releasing recipes with exact breakdowns over the next week. They are simple and without expensive or unusual ingredients and procedures. What ingredients were needed for cooking?
|Chicken on sale 2.20 kg (whole plus two quarters)||180 CZK|
|Onion, 1 kg||20 CZK|
|Cauliflower on sale, 1 pc||CZK 45|
|Carrots, 4 pieces||15 CZK|
|Parsley, bundle 350 g||CZK 35|
|Celery with cream, 1 pc||25 CZK|
|Cucumber for salad, 1 pc||20 CZK|
|Tomatoes, 4 pcs||24 CZK|
|White pepper, 2 pieces||CZK 10|
|Ice salad, 1 pc||22 CZK|
|Apples, 4 pieces||20 CZK|
|Soft fresh cheese, 0.5 kg||CZK 52|
|Gouda, 250 g||55 CZK|
|Sour cream, 200 g||17 CZK|
|Thick white yogurt, 200 g||20 CZK|
|Eggs, 10 pieces||CZK 43|
|Jasmine rice, 500 g||CZK 32|
|Children’s grits, 500 g||CZK 30|
|Yellow peas, halved, 500 g||18 CZK|
|Plain flour, 1 kg||21 CZK|
|Semi-coarse flour, 1 kg||21 CZK|
|Oil, 1 l||55 CZK|
|Price per purchase||840 CZK|
I bought from the prepared menu, so I used most of the ingredients without any leftovers. I didn’t use all the oil, flour and butter and I had 1.5 liters left homemade chicken broth. In addition, I used salt, spices, powdered sugar for dumplings, a handful of peas from the freezer, a donated tomato and cucumber.
Take this menu as inspiration to think about food. Treat yourself to a more expensive piece of meat during the week, modify the rest the next day, add vegetables and transform it into a different meal. Introduce legumes on Wednesdays or noodles on Thursdays and use seasonal vegetables and fruits. Serve even the humblest food beautifully, garnish with fresh herbs and eat in peace. It’s the best thing you can do for yourself and your family.