Mum feeds family of four for £25 a week – here’s her Aldi shopping list and recipes

It's been a long month...
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  • It's the end of January and if you're feeling the pinch after a very expensive December, you're not the only one. Luckily, one budget conscious shopper has shared her advice for making the pennies stretch that little bit further.

    With the average UK family spending over £3,000 during the festive season, according to The Bank Of England, many of us still paying of debts and credit cards, or waiting for pay day.

    Financial expert, Jasmine Birtles explains: ‘January is one of those times when there’s too much month for your money particularly if you got paid just before Christmas – that makes the reality of Christmas (over) spending really bite. So, to get to the end of the month without going too far into the red, make the most of what’s available at home and at the supermarket. Dive into wonderful seasonal vegetables, dumplings and hot, veggie soups to keep everyone well-fed on a tight budget.’

    With this in mind, Supermarket Aldi challenged busy mum Natalie Lee to feed her family of four for an entire week on a budget of just £25 in their store, with the aim of creating cheap, quick and easy recipes.

    READ MORE: Cheap family meals under £1 a head

    According to the supermarket, the average weekly shop for a family of four costs £60.60 – even though many supermarkets have introduced permanent promotions on healthy ingredients.

    So, armed with less than half of this average budget, Natalie got to work, cooking up breakfast, lunch and dinner for herself, her husband and their two children for the whole week.

    Natalie’s £25 a week meal plan:

    Monday: Breakfast: Smoothie. Lunch: Eggs/ avocado on toast. Dinner: Vegetable rice (Aldi recipe below)
    Tuesday: Breakfast: Porridge. Lunch: Rice, chicken and mixed peppers. Dinner: Halloumi and Asparagus Kebabs (Aldi recipe below)
    Wednesday: Breakfast: Cereal. Lunch: Meatballs and leftover vegetables. Dinner: Chicken Fajitas (Aldi recipe below)
    Thursday: Breakfast: Cereal. Lunch: Vegetable soup and bread. Dinner: Pasta, olive oil and garlic granules.
    Friday: Breakfast: Smoothie. Lunch: Omelette and salad. Dinner: Spaghetti and pesto sauce
    Saturday: Breakfast: Smoked salmon and eggs. Lunch: Baked beans on toast. Dinner: Chicken, asparagus, potatoes
    Sunday: Breakfast: Eggs and chilli flakes on toast. Lunch/Dinner: Sunday roast.

    Natalie’s £25 a week shopping list:

    Large eggs
    Blueberries
    Frozen mixed veg
    Avocado
    Soft wholemeal bread
    Scottish porridge oats
    Specially Selected Pesto
    Everyday Essentials Spaghetti
    Wholewheat Pasta
    Chicken breast fillets
    Diced Chicken Breast
    Cereal
    Vegetable Soup
    Roasting potatoes
    5% fat beef Meatballs
    Easy cook rice
    Iceberg lettuce
    Whole Chicken
    Low fat natural yoghurt
    Baked Beans
    Halloumi
    Red Chilli
    Asparagus
    Lime
    Chili Flakes
    Fajita Kit
    Spring Onions
    Mixed Peppers

    READ MORE: Family with 13 kids reveal how they eat for as little as 66p per person for a meal

    Feeling inspired? Why not try one of Natalie’s recipes?

    Chicken fajita’s (serves 4)

    Aldi chicken fajita's

    Ingredients:

    • 1 pack Ashfield Farm Diced Chicken Breast
    • ½ of each red, green and yellow peppers
    • ½ bunch spring onions
    • 1 475g pack Fiesta Fajita Dinner Kit
    • 1 ripe Avocado
    • Juice ½ Lime
    • ½ tsp Stonemill Chilli Flakes
    • Couple of scoops of low-fat natural yoghurt
    • Store cupboard goods: A little Sunflower Oil

    Method:

    1. Preheat the oven to 200⁰C/400⁰F/Gas Mark 6
    2. Thinly slice the peppers discarding any white pith and seeds
    3. Wash, trim and thinly slice the spring onions
    4. Put all the above into a large bowl, with the chicken, add half the lime juice and mix togetherSprinkle over the fajita seasoning from the kit and mix well
    5. Lightly grease a large baking tra
    6. Spread the chicken and vegetable mix over the tray
    7. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes
    8. Meanwhile make the avocado dip
    9. Cut the avocado in half lengthways, remove the stone and scoop out the flesh
    10. Put the avocado into a bowl, mash the flesh with a fork then add the yoghurt, the rest of the lime juice and the chilli flakes then mix well
    11. Warm the tortillas in the oven
    12. To make up the fajitas put some of the salsa from the kit on each tortilla, then add some of the chicken and vegetables
    13. Roll up and serve alongside the avocado dip.

    Natalie’s super quick & easy vegetable rice (serves 4)

    Ingredients:

    • 250g Easy cook rice (uncooked)
    • 500g Frozen mixed veg
    • 2 Large eggs
    • Store cupboard essentials: A few turns of Garlic granules
    • Store cupboard essentials: A good glug of Soy Sauce

    Method:

    1. Cook the rice in boiling water and heat the vegetables on the stove
    2. Combine the cooked rice and vegetables in a large frying pan with a splash of oil
    3. Sprinkle a dash of the garlic granules and add those to the vegetable rice on a low heat
    4. Crack and add two eggs and keep stirring until the eggs are combined and cooked through
    5. Add a good glug of soy sauce and enjoy!

    Halloumi and asparagus kebabs (serves 4)

    Ingredients

    • 2 x Packs Halloumi
    • 1 x Pack Asparagus Tips
    • ½ x Lime
    • 3 tbsp Olive Oil
    • ½  Red Chilli

    Method

    1. Soak some kebab skewers in water (to prevent burning)
    2. Drain the packs of halloumi then slice into finger sized pieces
    3. Take the pack of asparagus tips and cut them in half
    4. Carefully thread the cheese and asparagus onto the skewers
    5. Whisk together 1 tbsp lime juice and the olive oil
    6. Thinly slice the chilli and add to the oil. Season to taste
    7. Brush this over the kebabs and BBQ or grill, turning and basting occasionally until golden brown