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Quick and Easy Family Meals & Dinner Recipes (Save Money)

Updated on November 18, 2013

5 nutritious family meals on a budget

Feed the family Family good food on a budget. Quick and easy dinner recipes: This page will show you how save money on your grocery bill, serving cheap family meals, without giving up nutrition or quality, and still feed your family great meals. We have all noticed how expensive our weekly family shopping is becoming? So we are looking for ideas to help us save money in our household.

How about 5 home cooked family meals for 20 Sound too good to be true?

I feel it is important to make a good wholesome and nutritious dinner every night, my family enjoy these recipes and are always full after eating.

I was taught to cook from a young age, and my daughter loves nothing better than helping me out, most of the dishes are so easy and taste devine

But more importantly as the cost of living increases we are looking for ways to help us save money on our grocery bills and more ways to feed the family cheaply and still having a filling nutritious dinner.

Picture credit

The essential Dinners Made Easy eBook

this is the kindle edition, I downloaded it to my note book and printed out the individual ideas to make Dinners for the family easy.

Quick and Easy Dinners: Essential Shopping list

for weekly budget family meals

I set myself a challenge, to feed the family for less for 5 days good filling, family meals. Having such a tight budget meant I had to get creative, however I think I managed it quite nicely.

You can copy these recipes too

Here is my Shopping list

Basic potatoes - 2.5kg

Carrots loose - 620g

Basics Broccoli - 300g

3 loose onions

courgette (medium sized)

mushrooms (loose 500g)

half fat creme fresh

Basic mozzarella 125g

2x 10" pizza bases

smoked salmon (trimmings 250g)

chicken thigh fillets 325g

lean steak mince meat 700g

(from the Deli counter ) Danish salami 75g

(tin) tomatoes 400g

(tin plum tomatoes

tomato puree

basics kidney beans 420g

pasta (fusilli or similar) 500g

Thai green curry sauce (500g)

easy cook rice (500g)

mild chili powder


£19.50 (as at time of publishing, using a well known supermarket own brand)


Quick and Easy Dinners need good Pyrex bakeware - kitchen essentials for great family meals

An essential for your kitchen to make lovely home cooked family meals, in no time.

***This is by far our Favourite meal!***

  • Prep time: 10 min
  • Cook time: 30 min
  • Ready in: 40 min
  • Yields: 4


  • Preheat oven to 400°F (204°C)
  • 3 Tbsp (45 ml) vegetable oil
  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 medium carrot
  • 1 Ib minced meat
  • Tbs. (8 g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup (235 ml) beef broth
  • 1 pinch of salt (to season)
  • 1 pinch of ground pepper (to season)
  • 1 -3/4 lb. (800 g) mashed potatoes


  1. Peel and dice your potatoes place on the cooker in a pan of boiling water and leave to cook.
  2. Put vegetables into a pan with some oil and place over heat to soften.
  3. In another pan, place the meat and rest of oil on the heat to brown, when the mince is browned, drain off the excess oil.
  4. Add the flour /broth /salt and pepper (you could add some Thyme or rosemary if you want for extra seasoning if you like this)
  5. Stir continuously until this thickens and has no lumps left.
  6. Pour this into a square glass/ ovenproof dish, and leave to cool.
  7. Drain and Mash your potatoes, add some milk and butter to soften them.
  8. Start spooning the potato on to the minced meat
  9. Top Tip: if you start at the edges and slowly add the mashed potatoes working your way into the centre your Mashed potatoes will not sink! drag a fork over the potatoes to create spikes (kids love this bit!)
  10. Place in the oven for 30 minutes and serve
  11. Photo copyright @LisaAuch
Cast your vote for Easy to make Cottage Pie
  • Prep time: 10 min
  • Cook time: 30 min
  • Ready in: 40 min
  • Yields: 4

Dinners made quick and easy- Thai green Chicken Curry with Rice - Tuesday nights Dinner ideas

  • Chicken thigh fillets 325g
  • I medium onion (chopped finely)
  • 1 medium broccoli (cut into small pieces)
  • 1 jar premade Thia Green curry Sauce
  • 1 medium carrot (sliced or diced)
  • Easy cook rice (use individual guidelines for however many people)


  1. Heat the oil in a wok or large frying pan. Brown the onion in the pan, Reduce the heat slightly and stir in the chicken pieces Add the green curry sauce and cook over a fairly high heat for about a minute, continue cooking on the heat for 25-30 minutes until thickened slightly, and Chicken is cooked through.
  2. Top Tip: for perfect cooked veg: separately boil and cook carrots and broccoli or if you have a steamer even better. Leave until cooked through or until preference and add to chicken dish just before serving
  • Cook time: 15 min
  • Ready in: 15 min
  • Yields: 4

Dinners Made Easy - Salmon & courgette pasta - Wednesday night dinner

  • 250 g pasta
  • 200 g salmon fillets (frozen or fresh)
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 200 ml cream fraishe
  • 1 medium sized courgette
  • 100 ml white wine
  • 1 lemon


  1. Boil pasta in enough water, add olive oil to the water. leave to cook.
  2. using a seperate pan- fry salmon in small pot, when it starts getting color, add wine and courgettes cut in blocks. Let it simmersimmer.
  3. When the courgette are not yet be al dente (cooked enough to be firm but not soft), add creme fraishe. Keep stirring until all hot and courgette al dente. Season with white pepper, salt and lemon juice.
  4. Drain pasta and add to the cooked salmon
  • Prep time: 10 min
  • Cook time: 30 min
  • Ready in: 40 min
  • Yields: 4

Dinners made easy - Chilli con carnne - Thursday night Dinner

  • 400 g/14¼oz minced beef
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion
  • finely chopped
  • 1 carrot
  • finely chopped
  • 1 heaped tbsp tomato puree
  • 400 g/14¼oz can chopped tomatoes
  • 1 x 400g/14¼oz can kidney beans
  • drained
  • 1 heaped teaspoon chili powder (add as much to personal taste)
  • rice to serve


  1. Boil rice in Pan.
  2. Heat the oil and vegetable until soft. in a Pan, add in the mince meat and chili powder until browned.
  3. Add the tomato puree stirring for 3 minutes
  4. add the chopped tomatoes and simmer for 35 minutes, adding water if the mixture begins to dry out.
  5. Stir in the kidney beans (you can add some coriander here if you like) and cook for a further five minutes.
  6. Serve generous portions of chili with cooked rice
  • Cook time: 35 min
  • Ready in: 35 min
  • Yields: 4

Dinners made Easy - 2 family sized Pizzas with Optional pizza toppings. - Friday night dinners

  • 2 medium sized pizza bases (2 x 10")
  • tomato puree (enough to cover pizza base)
  • 75 grams of Salami
  • 200 grams of mushrooms
  • mozzarella finely grated
  • Be creative with your favourite toppings


  1. This is a great job for the kids to help out and can put their own favourite toppings on the Pizzas making Friday night Dinners a fun time to celebrate the weekend.
  2. Follow cooking instruction on the label (usually around 20 -30 minutes) in oven.

cooking essentials for the kitchen - Cookware online

Having a good cookware set is great to have around the kitchen shop here for Full selection of Cookware online

Homemade Vegetable Soup Recipes

Step by Step photos tutorial to make the prefect vegetable soup, Just like Moms Delicious homemade vegetable soup recipes with . If you are looking for an Easy to make homemade vegetable soup then here it is!

Do you have great ideas for cheap family meals or - favourite recipes

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    • MartieG profile image

      MartieG aka 'survivoryea' 5 years ago from Jersey Shore

      Your recipe for Cottage Pie looks easy and delicious! :>)

    • OrganicMom247 profile image

      OrganicMom247 5 years ago

      Thanks for sharing these cheap family ideas. Nothing beats home cooked meals.

    • nightbear lm profile image

      nightbear lm 5 years ago

      this page would be very helpful to anyone, but especially for families on budgets. Meal planning is sometimes difficult. I think you have helped. blessed.

    • Ramkitten2000 profile image

      Deb Kingsbury 6 years ago from Flagstaff, Arizona

      Great ideas. I'd like to try that curry dish. Oh, and that salmon-pasta dish too. Yum!

    • GonnaFly profile image

      Jeanette 6 years ago from Australia

      Love these redipe ideas. Blessed and added to my Frugal Living lens.

    • partydepot lm profile image

      Dawn Archibald 6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      I know what I am having for dinner tonight!

    • sandyjunep lm profile image

      sandyjunep lm 6 years ago

      Great lens, all looks so nice. Would like you to come cook for my family

    • jptanabe profile image

      Jennifer P Tanabe 6 years ago from Red Hook, NY

      Mmm all these recipes look so delicious - made me hungry!

    • profile image

      myshelle01 6 years ago

      Great Lens

    • LisaAuch1 profile image

      Lisa Auch 6 years ago from Scotland

      @clouda9 lm: Hi Clouda9 thanks for the blessing it is very much appreciated - the current conversion is 20.00 GBP = 32.1859 USD so I hope that is still cheap for you!

    • clouda9 lm profile image

      clouda9 lm 6 years ago

      I love that you have taken on a challenge and shared it here for all of us to share and learn too. Only question...what is the American equivalent to £20? My [Recipes] Angel Blessing today is SWAH and featured on

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Wow, these are great ideas and relatively inexpensive also; it can't get better then that!!

    • bt55 profile image

      bt55 6 years ago

      I suggest that you try adding some garlic(2-4 cloves minced and added to meat), ground cumin(1/2-2tablesponns to taste), and 1/4 cup each of pureed carrot and celery) to the chili. You will find it an interesting and delicious flavor(I add a tablespoon of find ground corn meal also). The pureed veg adds a wonderful sweetness and cuts some bitterness of some chili powders. Also a tiny pinch of sugar really works well. Pink beans, red beans, and even black beans add a wow to a homemade pot of red. Great lens Thanks a lot for your creative ideas

    • sidther lm profile image

      sidther lm 6 years ago

      I will be making those pizzas tonight! Thanks!

    • Jhangora LM profile image

      Jhangora LM 6 years ago

      Sorry cooking isn't my strength, but I like Tandoori chicken and red beans and rice.

    • howtocurecancer profile image

      howtocurecancer 6 years ago

      I love your lens. I am trying to keep the list and this week is my testing week following your steps. Thanks alot.

    • beerhead profile image

      beerhead 6 years ago

      pasta pasta pasta lots of cheap and filling meals can be made. Great recipes on this lens!!