Your 7-day budget meal planner
Before starting any healthy eating programme, please read how to choose your meal plan to make sure you follow the plan that's right for you.
This nutritionally balanced meal plan is suitable for those who wish to save money on food shopping and food waste. It's both calorie and carb counted for your convenience, and contains at least five portions of fruit and veg per day.
Please note that the full nutritional information and exact specifications for all meals is available in the linked recipes. The pdf for this meal plan is currently being updated, but will be available again soon.
The weekly overview
Breakfast: Porridge with banana
Dinner: Bean and mushroom enchiladas
Pudding: Stuffed baked apples and custard
Choose from snacks including fruit, oatcakes and peanut butter and fruit and nut bars.
Breakfast: Weetabix with raisins
Lunch: Chickpea and tuna salad
Dinner: Turkey and mushroom mince and a medium baked potato
Pudding: Rhubarb and ginger sponge and custard
Choose from snacks including fruit and low-fat fruit yogurt.
Breakfast: Porridge with pineapple
Lunch: Mackerel salsa wrap
Dinner: Tomato and red pepper risotto
Pudding: Apple Charlotte with Greek yogurt
Choose from snacks including hot chocolate, wholemeal toast with peanut butter and oatcakes with reduced-sugar jam.
Breakfast: Weetabix with banana
Lunch: Roast butternut squash and red lentil soup with a wholemeal roll
Dinner: Fish pie
Pudding: Banana custard
Choose from snacks including oatcakes with reduced-sugar jam, carrot cake and low-fat yogurt.
Breakfast: Sugar-free muesli with apricots
Lunch: Mulligatawny soup and a cheese and tomato wholemeal roll
Dinner: Bangers 'n' mash
Pudding: Low-fat yogurt and pineapple
Choose from snacks including hot chocolate, carrot cake and oatcakes with reduced-fat soft cheese.
Breakfast: Apple and muesli smoothie
Lunch: Tuna and sweetcorn sandwich
Dinner: Mixed bean chilli with rice and plain yogurt
Pudding: Sweet potato pudding cake with Greek yogurt
Choose from snacks including fruit, wholemeal toast and peanut butter and wholemeal fruit bars.
Breakfast: Scrambled or poached eggs on wholemeal toast
Lunch: Hearty minestrone soup
Pudding: Apricot crunch with Greek yogurt
Choose from snacks including hot chocolate, fruit and savoury popcorn.
With stagnating wages and food prices rising, more and more of us are having to manage our finances more carefully. With this in mind, we have devised a delicious, nutritious, budget-friendly weekly meal plan. It is carb counted to help those of you who carb count to manage your diabetes, and calorie counted to help you to manage your weight.
General healthy eating information
To help us manage our weight and choose a healthier diet, reference intakes (RIs) have been devised and give a useful indication of how much energy the average person needs and how a particular nutrient fits into your daily diet.
RIs are not intended as targets, as energy and nutrient requirements are different for all people depending on your age, sex and activity levels. The term ‘reference intakes’ has replaced ‘guideline daily amounts’ (GDAs), which used to appear on food labels. But, the basic principle behind these two terms is the same.
RIs values are based on an average-sized woman doing an average amount of physical activity. This is to reduce the risk of people with lower energy requirements eating too much, as well as to provide clear and consistent information on labels.
As part of a healthy balanced diet, an adult's reference intakes for energy and carbohydrate in a day is 2000 kcal and 260g, respectively.
The ‘budget' meal plan should be adjusted according to your needs. Remember, we don't all need to eat the same amount of calories. Men, who are generally heavier and have more muscle compared to women, require more calories. Young children also need fewer calories than adults. In contrast, older boys from 11 years and girls from 15 years and above, are likely to need more calories. So, adjust portion sizes accordingly to meet your needs.