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We’re on to week 2 in my Money Saving Meals series, where we’re bringing you a month of detailed budget meal plans so you don’t have to do the thinking of ‘what’s for dinner’ every evening.

You will find everything you need to follow for an easy, flavour-packed and healthy ease into the New Year – including a full FREE shopping list, additional notes and a breakdown of cost.

The front page of Taming Twins' budget meal plan week 2, named Money Saving Meals, with images of 5 family friendly recipes.

On these cold days of January, there’s one thing we need, and that’s hearty and delicious home cooked food that doesn’t break the bank – right?!

I got you my friends!

This is the SECOND budget meal plan in our Money Saving Meals series, where we bring 4 weeks of family friendly midweek dinners that tick all the boxes. Here is the first of my budget meal plans if you haven’t seen it yet.

About this budget meal plan

We have concentrated here on bringing you a collection of recipes that strike a balance of prioritising price and value, while also making sure you get: 

⭐️ A full meal for 4 people

⭐️ A balanced plate of carbs, protein and vegetables

⭐️ A variety of ingredients and dishes

Things to note

➡️ You may want to add some side dishes to some of these recipes, which we will outline in the notes below

➡️ Please be aware that any suggested sides have been added to the shopping list but are NOT included in the costings breakdown

➡️ I’ll be sharing this meal plan on Instagram, Facebook and TikTok, so watch out for the videos so you can cook along.

For reference, I shopped for this Meal Plan in December 2023 at Aldi and it cost £35.40

Why use a budget meal plan?

⭐️ Knowing exactly what food to buy for avoids food waste, saving you money

⭐️ Having a plan for dinner avoids the mental load of “what’s for dinner?” question every night

You can find more Meal Plans here:

Meal Plan 26 – Slow Cooker Saviours

Meal Plan 25 – Easy Midweek Winners

Meal Plan 24 – 5 Brand New Recipes

Some tips for using a budget meal plan:

➡️ Check for any items on the shopping list that you already have in your cupboard

➡️ Maybe think about doubling up and freezing a recipe or two where the recipes are suitable, so save cooking another day or for the weekend

➡️ Remove ingredients for any meals that you don’t want to cook

➡️ The shopping list includes the cheapest version of each ingredient. Obviously if you want to buy lower fat mince or free range etc, that’s personal choice

➡️ All of the recipes are to serve 4, so if you’re cooking for 2, simply halve the ingredients

Budget Meal Plan: The recipes

Dinner 1

⭐️ Cost: £1.88 per portion

⭐️ Serving suggestion: Homemade chips or jacket potatoes and salad (ingredients for these are already on the shopping list)

Halloumi burger with sweet chilli mayo in a brioche bun.
4.84 from 36 votes

Halloumi Burger {15 Minute Meal}

This vegetarian Halloumi Burger recipe is SO easy and tasty. Crunchy on the outside, gooey melty goodness in the middle, with sweet chilli mayo sauce and avocado – it’s a delicious dinner that’s ready in about 15 minutes.
View Recipe

Dinner 2

⭐️ Cost: £1.11 per portion

⭐️ This recipes uses 250g of soft cheese, but Aldi sells in 200g packs. This quantity will be absolutely fine, add a little pasta water to the dish if you would like a saucier dish

⭐️ We’ve added garden peas to the shopping list rather than petit pois as they are a little cheaper, but choose whichever you have or prefer

⭐️ We’ve bought a bag of red onions for all of the week’s recipes, so use these instead of white

Quick and simple cream cheese pasta on a plate with peas and parsley on top. Ready to serve.
5 from 39 votes

Cream Cheese Pasta {10 Minute Meal}

This Cream Cheese Pasta recipe is a super speedy 10 minute midweek meal. Add whatever vegetables or meat you have in the fridge and you're good to go.
View Recipe

Dinner 3

⭐️ Cost: £1.90 per portion

⭐️ Serving suggestion: Rice (included on the shopping list)

⭐️ Brand new slow cooker recipe!

⭐️ We’ve bought a bag of red onions for all of the week’s recipes, so use these instead of white

Close up of a pan filled with slow cooked beef goulash.
5 from 44 votes

Beef Goulash {Slow Cooker or Oven Recipe}

Simple to prep ahead of time, this Beef Goulash is rich, hearty and comforting – perfect for an easy midweek meal for the whole family.
View Recipe

Dinner 4

⭐️ Cost: £1.29 per portion

⭐️ Complete meal in 10 minutes – no need for sides

⭐️ We’ve bought a bag of red onions for all of the week’s recipes, so use these instead of white

A pan full of fresh tortellini lasagne - a simple 10 minute meal.
5 from 32 votes

Spinach and Ricotta Baked Tortellini Lasagne {10 Minute Meal}

Some days just call for a quick, delicious, budget-friendly, cheat's recipe, and that's just what this 10 minute Baked Tortellini pasta dish is.
View Recipe

Dinner 5

⭐️ Cost: £1.35 per portion

⭐️ All in one meal – no need for extra sides

⭐️ We’ve bought a bag of red onions for all of the week’s recipes, so use these instead of white

Big pot filled with chicken fried rice.
5 from 49 votes

Chicken Fried Rice {Easy Fakeaway}

For those evenings when only Chicken Fried Rice will do but you don’t want to order a takeaway, try this delicious Egg Fried Rice with Chicken recipe.
View Recipe

Quick reminder, the printable shopping list can be found here.

If you’ve found this useful, let’s be friends on Instagram @tamingtwins

Please remember, all prices included in this meal plan are correct at the time of writing, but are subject to change.

new cookbook!

Featuring 100 delicious recipes that can be cooked in one pot, you can open any page in this book and find something that will give you not only a meal that the whole family will eat and enjoy, but also one that makes your life a little simpler in the process.

More Recipes

Sarah Rossi founder of and author of 'What's for Dinner?' books.


Hi, I'm Sarah. I help busy people decide 'What's for Dinner?' Find hundreds of recipes here, and also in my bestselling recipe book. Hope my recipes make your life easier ❤️

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