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Red days on a budget!


Silver Member
S: 15st13lb C: 15st6lb G: 11st12lb BMI: 32.8 Loss: 0st7lb(3.14%)
Hi All :)

I've decided I really need to get my finances in order, I am spending waaaay too much on food at the moment, buying what I fancy and lots of meat. Trouble is, I have also decided to add a couple of red days to my EE weeks to mix things up a bit. On EE it is fine, I can have a little meat with my carbs but on red days I do tend to have lots of meat.

Does anyone have good budget suggestions for red day meals?

I'll include more eggs, but all my ideas for bulking out stews to use less meat include carbs/pulses.:confused:

Think I'll need to start menu planning :)
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I'm making red day bolognaise tonight and am calling it "chunky bolognaise".
I'll use diced carrot, swede, pepper, onion and the usual tinned toms and herbs etc but make it really chunky with the veg. I'm serving it with broccoli while the others have spaghetti!

Do you like butternut squash? That really bulks out a red day soup or casserole.


Silver Member
S: 15st13lb C: 15st6lb G: 11st12lb BMI: 32.8 Loss: 0st7lb(3.14%)
That sounds delish Jaylou! I'm having something similar tonight actually. Butternut squash filled with Bolognaise sauce. I always add lots of veggies to my bolognaise now so that my children are getting plenty (sneaky!) and will be giving them and OH pasta.

Good idea to add BNS to stews etc! Could also use as a topping mixed with swede for cottage pie - oooh, hungry now ;)
S: 14st4lb C: 14st4lb G: 11st0lb BMI: 32.3 Loss: 0st0lb(0%)
Most supermarkets do 3 packets of meat for £10, thats what we buy.
Chunky spag bowl is a great idea as you can use 1/2 a packet of mince for it and top it up with chunky veg (thats what we done last night actually) and passata for the sauce.
Chicken/beef stew is another good one, you can have tonnes of veg in and normally only get away with using two chicken breasts for two people. Same with stir fry!
Yep, I use a lot of swede too especially as it's one of the veggies my daughter does eat!! I'm trying to do red and green instead of EE so using more swede and squash instead of carbs. Cottage pie with carrot and swede mash is great, I do half with that for me and half with mash potato for the others!!

Mrs V

Loves Life!
S: 21st7lb C: 12st5lb G: 11st0lb Loss: 9st2lb(42.52%)
I always have a chunky bolognaise on a red day...one day I have stuffed aubergines with it and the next I will pour it over loads of syn free veg and I love it!
You could make stews and bulk them up with veg that is free on a red day too. Also, I get whole chickens to roast as they are way cheaper than fillet portions at the moment.
It doesnt need to be expensive Hun, you just have to plan ahead.
Good luck!

S: 13st0lb C: 12st10lb G: 10st7lb BMI: 29.6 Loss: 0st4lb(2.2%)
Not sure if anyone watches the economy gastronomy, but they had some good ideas for "tumble down" meals. Where they cook up the mince with certain ingredients and it can then be turned into bolognese, chilli, stuffed butternut squash, etc. A roast chicken that can also be used for chicken noodle soup, chicken and rice, etc. Also using cheaper cuts of meat. Chicken thighs are really good for you and quite inexpensive. Stewing meat is quite inexpensive as well and can be padded out with loads of root veg.



Silver Member
S: 11st7lb C: 10st0lb G: 10st0lb BMI: 23.3 Loss: 1st7lb(13.04%)
Most supermarkets do 3 packets of meat for £10, thats what we buy.
Be careful with this offer! If you work out the price per kg, it's almost always more expensive than buying the packs of meat separately! Take a calculator or mobile phone with you when you go shopping - with a bit of maths, you'll be shocked how the 2 for £x or similar offers on the ends of aisles are more expensive than going round to the main bit of the supermarket.

If you can, it's worth looking out for reduced meat at the end of the day - if you've got a freezer, it'll freeze fine on the day of purchase and save you loads of money!


Silver Member
S: 15st13lb C: 15st6lb G: 11st12lb BMI: 32.8 Loss: 0st7lb(3.14%)
Thanks for all the fab suggestions!

Right, I'll be buying lots more mince when I am next shopping! I often buy the packs when on offer and make big batches of bolognaise and chilli to freeze, I'll make up extra for other meals too. :)

Steph - I loved that programme! I didn't catch every episode, but there were some really good ideas.


Full Member
S: 11st8lb C: 10st9lb G: 9st7lb BMI: 27.2 Loss: 0st13lb(8.02%)
lentils are godd for bulking things out.the only thing is you will ned to start with a small amount and make it more each time you do it so as to find how much of them you like.
A cheap filling dinner I make on red is 'bacon ratatouille'. Just make a ratatouille and before I dish it out, add some chopped up cooked gammon.

Always remember, unless you have a cooked breakfast in the week, an 'all day breakfast' is great for a cheaper evening meal.

Ooooh just thought of something else - a BIG omelete with lots of veg, and small amount of bacon/gammon (I find that if I use smoked bacon/gammon I can get away with using less - but still with a great taste)
S: 12st6.5lb C: 11st13lb G: 9st0lb BMI: 29.6 Loss: 0st7.5lb(4.3%)
What about cheaper things like Morrisons eat smart sausages - I see big sausage casserole. And, canned tuna as well. You could do a tuna pate or tuna in tomatoes with HE cheese on top and HE wholeweat spag. Is fish any cheaper? I like you need to budget. Someone has mentioned in an earlier post about buying a whole chicken instead of cuts. I think I might start doing this. Or is it cheaper to buy frozen meat? Turkey is a bit cheaper too isn't it. Hmmmmm got me thinking now. I use swede and leek mash a lot and I pop a dollop of fromage frais in it and it's lovely. x

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