Fish Pie, quite expensive for here at £1.32, but you can still stay on track for £1 a day


Fish Pie, quite expensive for here at £1.32, but you can still stay on track for £1 a day

The fish is obviously the expensive ingredient here, and the thing that we need to search around for to make a fish pie that is delicious and as cheap as we can get it. It took a while, but I think I’ve done it alright, plus at the end of the post are some suggestions on how to stay on track for £1 a day

Serves 2
150g white fish, Asda frozen Pollack £4/kg, 60p
150g smoked fish, Asda frozen smoked cod fillets £3.50/400g, £1.31
a bay leaf if you have it
225ml milk, Asda 89p/2.27 litres, 9p
2 eggs, Asda 15 mixed weight eggs/£1.20, 16p
100g frozen peas, Asda £1/kg, 10p
10g butter, Asda SmartPrice 82p/250g, 3p
25g flour, 1p
salt and pepper

400g potatoes, Asda £1.69/2.5kg, 27p
25g butter, 8p

Total cost £2.65, per serving £1.32

Put the milk, fish and bay leaf in a large frying pan and gently poach for a few minutes until the fish flakes apart. Scoop out the fish and place to one side.

Melt the butter in a non-stick pan and stir in the flour. Cook for a moment, than add a little of the milk, stirring furiously with a silicone or wooden spoon or a whisk. The milk and butter/flour mixture will emulsify into a paste. Add a little more milk and repeat. Do this a couple more times until the mixture starts to look more like a sauce than a mixture. Add the remaining milk and heat gently until it thickens up. Simmer, very gently, for a couple of minutes until the floury taste is cooked out. Set to one side. Season with salt and pepper.

Peel, boil and mash the potatoes. Add the extra butter and mix well, season with salt and pepper.

Boil the eggs for 5 minutes, adding the peas for the last minute, then drain and fill the pan with cold water to cool them off. Peel the eggs.

Now assemble your pie. Very gently mix the flaked fish, peas and sauce together. Don’t mix too enthusiastically or the fish will disintegrate. Place in an oven proof dish. Slice the eggs into quarters and put on top of the fish and top with the mashed potato.

Your fish pie can now be safely stashed in the fridge for a day, maybe two. When you are ready to eat, heat in a hot oven until the mash is golden and the pie is hot all the way through. Enjoy with some veg on the side.

This is the cheapest I could find to make this, so can we still do £1 a day? When I do over budget things like this, I usually see if it would cost over 2 days, so £2 – £1.32 leaves us with just 68p for the remaining meals. Here are some suggestions to stay on track if you want to

Day 1
breakfast – porridge 5p
lunch – cheese & ham toastie 18p
dinner – fish pie £1.32

Day 2
breakfast porridge 5p
lunch – beef & sun dried tomato paste sandwich 13p
dinner – peanut butter noodles 23p

Total cost of the 2 days £1.96, so it can be done

Take care of your family and your budget

Before putting together the meal planners, Lesley surveyed what was needed. Of the existing 14 budget meal plans, most are cheap meals for 2 people so can be sized up or down. Others are cheap family meals for 4 people, or meals for one

Want to know more about how to feed yourself for £1 a day? Try Cheap Family Recipes for monthly meal plans

Thrifty Lesley has an associated Facebook Group. Do come over and say hello if you haven’t already joined. I’d love to see you!

I’m a perpetual dieter, and to help with that endeavour, there is now also a Thrifty Lesley dieting group, a lovely, growing community.



  1. Lesley

    Oh right, I see. With such relatively expensive ingredients, I’m not sure I could get enough calories in for the rest of the week. It’s possible it might work for a two week plan, as you say, to dilute down the expensive fish a bit, as you say. I’ll have a think about it for later on

  2. Katherine

    Recalculated the shopping list for the above and it came to £13.55 so getting back on budget might take more than a week.

  3. Katherine

    Glad you are recovering. What I’m trying to say is could you incorporate the shopping list required for the above recipe into a weekly budget of £14 and plan three meals a day? I’m sure you could, but on the other hand it might be easier to incorporate it into a slightly longer plan. Apart from the fish and eggs, I think the other ingredients are left at the end of meal plan one so it might combine with that. Just a thought. Maybe next year

  4. Lesley

    Katherine, I have put a suggested 2 days at the end of the post that stays on £1 a day.
    You would also, of course, have the remaining ingredients for other recipes
    You could make at least 1 more x 2 serving fish pie with the ingredients you have if you wanted, or use the fish for a risotto or fish cakes
    Is that what you mean, or am I missing the point?
    I am feeling better thanks, nearly gone now. Had a hacking cough for a few days, but that’s nearly gone now too

  5. Katherine

    I hope you are feeling better. Pie sounds delicious. Initial outlay is about £11.30, isn’t it? Could you put this in a plan for us? How long would the plan have to be for?

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *