Day 5 Budget week: Living on £20 a week

Stretching the budget

Quick veggi soup Photo: Russell Bowes

Quick veggi soup Photo: Russell Bowes

I wanted to post this yesterday, but I was still catching up from Thursday and so I’m running a bit behind at the moment. So how have I been getting on with my budget week challenge of living on £20 for the week? I think its time to take stock and look at what the meals I have cooked over the past week cost. I’m not sure if I will come in under the £20 budget for the week in the end. I have found it quite difficult doing the meals for two on what is a tight budget. I think one of the main problems is that I am a really big eater. I’d normally been eating bigger portions and much more often than I have this week and I last night in the gym I could really feel the effects of not putting enough fuel in through the week. I have had times when I’ve been hungry and its not to pleasant when you have to say to your self, ‘wait for lunch or dinner’.

Though I might not make the challenge I have been pleased with how little I have spent in comparison to a normal week; and I think with better planning I could have made it through it much better.


Cereal + milk
Mug of black coffee

Cost 32p

Mid-Morning snack

1 large orange 25p


Thursday nights budget vegetable soup made a surprising amount given what I put in it and there was more than enough for lunch. Whack in a couple of sausages chopped up and it was quite filling.

Soup 45p
Sausages 11p
total cost 56p


Budget tuna pasta bake 88p per serving Photo: Russell Bowes

Budget tuna pasta bake 88p per serving Photo: Russell Bowes

As I said above I had started to feel not eating as much when I hit the gym Friday evening and I came out of there pretty hungry so this might be a meal which breaks the budget; I’m not sure and I guess we’ll find out at the end of the week when I add everything up.

I made a budget Tuna Pasta Bake. I was proud of how little it cost and normally I would have been really happy with it as it was quite tasty but I was also a little cross that I might have smashed the budget doing so. But to console myself it did also do for Saturday lunch so I got four portions out of it.

Ingredients for four portions
Butter – 30p
Milk – 8p
flour – 5p
cheese – 50p
Value pasta – 20
2 cans of Value Tuna – £.160
1/2 a can of Value Sweetcorn – 15p
1 large onion – 10p
2 cloves of garlic – 5p
1 huge leek – 50p

Total cost £3.53 / 88p per serving

Evening snack with T.V

30g portion Value Tortilla chips – 8p
Glass of Value Lemonade – 4p

Cost 12p

Total cost for the day = £3.01p

Now I need to go through and check my numbers but I think so far I am running at a cost of £14.84 for the weeks food so far.

Doing this challenge has defiantly given me food for thought (pun intended). There are so many time I will pop to the supermarket to get a bottle of milk and come back with a bag of bits and pieces which we don’ really need and I just picked up without thinking what I really wanted them for. Okay not much get thrown away in our flat as I’m that big eater I mentioned earlier but still I think we could save money with better planning. I’ve also eaten a lot less crap food, snacking on fruit instead which can’t be bad for me.

By Russell Bowes

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