Budget Friendly Recipes | Cost of Living Support | Nacro

Budget Friendly Recipes

Find some sample low-cost recipes created by Steven, one of our service users. You can download Steven’s whole recipe book below.

All the costs have been calculated using the budget range at Asda and every recipe is designed to feed four people.

Costs are accurate as of October 2022, we’ve also included a ‘store cupboard essentials’ list. These are the everyday cupboard items that are used in most recipes, such as oil or salt. Prices for each recipe don’t include the costs of store cupboard essentials.

Everyday Essentials

  • Sunflower Oil (£2.40)
  • Salt (£0.50)
  • Pepper (£0.10)
  • Butter (£0.95)
  • Onions (Fresh, £0.90/ Frozen, £0.40)
  • Garlic (Fresh, £0.65/ Easy tube £0.75)
  • Pasta (£0.41)

Budget friendly recipes

Baking potatoes x 4

Tuna in spring water, 2 x 145g tin, drained or vegetarian alternative to tuna

Spring onions x 4, chopped

Chives, 1/2 a small bunch (optional)

Mayonnaise, 4 tbsp

Cheddar, 100g, grated


Step 1- Heat the oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Prick the potatoes all over with a fork and sprinkle with a little sea salt and a thin coat of oil. Bake until tender, approx 1 hour. Alternatively, microwave for around 7 minutes until soft.

Step 2 – Mix the tuna, onions, chives, mayo and half the cheese. Halve 2 cooked jacket potatoes then scoop some out into the tuna bowl, leaving a 1 cm shell.

Step 3- Roughly mix the potato and tuna together, season well, then pile back into the shells. Sprinkle over the rest of the cheese and put in the oven until bubbling and golden.

Oil x 3 tablespoons

Beef mince /quorn mince x 400g

Onion x 1, diced

Garlic cloves x 2, chopped

Carrot, grated x100g

Tinned tomatoes, 2x400g tins

Beef Stock x 400ml

Pasta x 400g

Salt and Pepper


Step 1 – Heat a large saucepan over a medium heat. Add a tablespoon of olive oil and once hot add the beef mince and a pinch of salt and pepper. Cook the mince until well browned over a medium-high heat (be careful not to burn the mince. It just needs to be a dark brown colour). Once browned, transfer the mince to a bowl and set aside.

Step 2 – Add another tablespoon of oil to the saucepan you browned the mince in and turn the heat to medium. Add the onions and a pinch of salt and fry gently for 5-6 minutes, or until softened and translucent. Add the garlic and cook for another 2 minutes. Add the grated carrot then pour the mince and any juices in the bowl back into the saucepan.

Step 3 – Add the tomatoes to the pan and stir well to mix. Pour in the stock, bring to a simmer and then reduce the temperature to simmer gently for 45 minutes, or until the sauce is thick and rich. Taste and adjust the seasoning as necessary.

Step 4 – When ready to cook the pasta, heat a large saucepan of water and add a pinch of salt. Cook according to the packet instructions. Once the spaghetti is cooked through, drain and add to the pan with the Bolognese sauce. Mix well and serve.

Oil x 2 tbsp

Pasta x 400g

Leek x 2, sliced into discs

Sweetcorn x 160g

Peas x 160g

Red Pepper x 1 de-seeded and sliced into cubes

Eggs x 3

Semi-skimmed milk x 150ml

Thyme x 2tsp (optional)

Cheddar x 100g, grated

Parmesan x 2 tbsp, grated (optional)


Step 1 – Heat oven to 190C/fan 170C/gas 5. Grease a 1.2 litre baking dish with the olive oil.

Step 2 – Cook the pasta in salted boiling water in a large pan for 3 mins. Add all the vegetables and cook for another 2-3 mins until the pasta is tender and the vegetables slightly softened. Drain, then tip into the baking dish and mix well.

Step 3 – Beat together the eggs and milk in a jug and add the thyme. Mix the two cheeses together and add most of it to the egg mixture, then season. Pour into the baking dish, stir gently, then scatter the rest of the cheese on top. Bake for 35-40 mins until set and golden. Cool for a few mins, then serve with a green salad.

Kirkby Street Cookbook from Steven