This is a 7 day meal plan for 2 adults, based on red lentils, chick peas and bacon, providing a total of 4500 calories per day. All meals are included, it is assumed nothing is in the cupboard except salt and pepper.
As at 25th September 2023 you will need £22.23 in your purse at the checkout, but the amount of food actually consumed (if you follow the plan fully) comes to £21.14 or £1.17 per person, per day, including the extra 8th and 9th days, using the bits and bobs left.
This plan was first written in June 2013, and now, in 2023, 10 years later, I’m delighted that it still adds up and that you can still eat for £1’ish a day.
Would you like more meal plans? There are celebration weeks, like Christmas, and some Valentines special meals too. Have a look a the meal plan list.
Weekly Shopping List
The column headed ‘left at the end of the week’ is what you can expect to have left in the cupboard. You can carry that over to next week, or use it for snacks etc, as you wish. The remaining potatoes can be used as jacket potatoes or oven wedges as a calorie top up when ever needed if required, or have a look at the optional 8th day.
Swaps & Substitutions
Swap the marmalade for another item, these options below are all more or less the same price. Bear in mind you will be using this in place of marmalade for the baked sponge and on toast. You could choose
● Smartprice strawberry jam
● Clear honey
● Asda Chocolate spread
● Lemon curd
You could get a litre pack of milk instead of the can of evaporated, currently 69p for smartprice. The evaporated gives a creamier flavour which is why I chose that. Or spend 66p more and get a 2 pint bottle of fresh milk if you prefer.
You could buy 4 tins of chickpeas instead of the dried pack, or 4 tins of different things eg 1 x chickpeas, 1 x kidney beans, 1 x butter beans, 1 x green lentils. Tins will cost a bit more. 2 tins value kidney beans and 2 tins chick peas would just be a few pence more. Or you can get all kinds of things at 60p-80p a tin.
|you will need
|left at the end of the week (after 9 days)
|can evaporated milk
|all of it
|6 medium free range eggs
|500g cooking bacon
|2kg onions, red may be cheaper
|1kg frozen peas
|value range tin sweetcorn
|Asda SP 400g passata or tomatoes
|Asda SP 500g raisins or mixed fruit
|1.5kg value sr flour
|800g value wholemeal loaf
|1kg granulated sugar
|500g Asda red lentils
|Asda SP 270g salted peanuts
|1 litre veg oil
|500g Brilliantly Buttery
|1kg value Oats
|Good and balanced 500g dried chick peas
|Asda SP tomato ketchup
|just a bit
|2000 plus 2500 calories per day
|11% protein, 35% fat, 54% carbs, 28g fibre pppd
|Govt. recommendations 10-35% protein, 20-35% fat, 45-65% carb, 25g fibre pppd
|Current recommendations have moved from 5 a Day for fruit & veg, to 7 a Day.
|This plan has, per person, a total of 2.5 portions of red, 21 orange, 6 green and 34 white and 12 purple. This gives a total of almost 11 portions of fruit and veg a day each over 7 days, or almost 9 over 9 days
Prep for the week
Use the Cakes and Bakes at any point during the week when you need them, as an extra at lunch, a pudding after dinner, for supper, or any other hungry moment. Or if you and the 2nd person you are feeding don’t need this many calories, healthwise, these would probably be the best things to leave out (speaking as a sweet thing lover – sorry 🙁 Or how about a good old British compromise, make them and make them stretch over a longer period of time 😉
- Open the can of evaporated milk and pour into a 1 litre container. Top up to the 1 litre mark with water. Store in the fridge
- If you get items at less than the cost on the Shopping List, you could use the excess to get a herb or spice – I suggest garam masala, a jar of garlic paste (a huge jar can be had for less than £3 from Asian shops), cinnamon or mixed spice, fish sauce, soy sauce or a big knob of fresh ginger which can be grated straight from the freezer. All of these things help to inject extra flavour and last for ages.
- If you don’t want to get dried chick peas, get tins and use those instead. Can sizes are fairly standard and about 400g/15 ounces which yields 250g (1½ cups) of beans once drained. Chickpeas roughly double their weight once cooked. So to get 250g (1 can) cooked chickpeas you need to cook 125g (¾ cup) dried chickpeas.
- The pack of 500g of dried chickpeas will yield the equivalent of 4 cans.
- If you buy the dried chick peas, it would be convenient for you to soak all of them and cook them in one go. Then divide them up into the equivalent of a cans worth (4 cans) and freeze them.
- It would be a good idea to do all the baking in one go too and wrap and freeze, ready for when you want a piece during the week. If you are using the bakes for packed lunches, just take one out in the morning and it will be defrosted by lunchtime.
What recipes will freeze this week?
If you wanted to, you could make some or all of the other items ahead of time, or when you have a moment to do one, and freeze, ready for that meal time.
Items that will freeze well
● Lentil Soup
● Carrot & Lentil Soup
● Pea Soup
● Leftovers Soup on the 8th day
● Chickpea Crumble
● The Falafel, but not the Grated Carrot Salad
● Chole & Nan
● Bacon & Sweetcorn Pie
● Mashed Potato
● The Baked Sponge after it has been cooked
● Fruit Loaf
● Fruit Scones
Day 3, 7 and 8 – TIP
Got any fruit going soft? Make a compote with it and spoon on your porridge
Short on time? Portion your oats etc and put everything in a sealable container overnight to make overnight oats. Just grab from the fridge in the morning
Day 4 – TIP:
Dinner: use the last of the bacon with the hash
Day 5 – TIP:
Want your breakfast on the go? Use the egg and both slices of bread to make an egg sandwich
If there are 2 of you, you could make 1 egg sandwich and 1 marmalade sandwich and have half each. Separate them when you pack them, don’t want marmalade on your egg!
Got a bit more time? Make a marmalade sandwich with both slices of bread, soak the sandwich in the egg and pan fry until golden
Day 6 – TIP:
Bacon sandwich – Although best eaten whilst hot, this makes a surprisingly good packed lunch too
Day 8 – TIP:
Lunch: Use any remaining vegetables and lentils to make soup. Omit 500g potatoes (there are plenty left) to use on Day 9. Make sure to season it well, it makes a big difference with soup. You could add a squirt of ketchup to brighten it. Use the last remaining 2 slices of bread with your soup.
Dinner: Make the full amount of peanut oat cakes and use half on Day 9 at lunchtime.
Day 9 – TIP:
Use the raisin pancake recipe, omit the raisins and serve with a blob of jam or whatever you bought this week
Lunch: The remaining half of the peanut oatcakes is lunch, but there won’t be any pea and onion hummus left, so use a blob of jam or whatever you bought this week. Also at lunchtime, make a bowl of oven wedges each by cutting up 500g potatoes, oiling, seasoning and roasting in the oven for about 30-40 minutes
Dinner: Use the remaining portion of potato, onion & sweetcorn cakes from Day 2, with ketchup and serve with a bowl of whatever soup you have left from Day 8.