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Cheap dinner ideas for all the family

Cheap dinner ideas for all the family

Make your life a little easier with the help of our budget meals guide, featuring cheap dinner ideas for all the family.

Preparing healthy meals on a budget can seem a little overwhelming at times. It’s likely you already have a busy life and thinking of cheap meal ideas is just another thing to add to your long to-do list! Luckily, there are plenty of cheap dinner ideas for all the family that are both delicious and nutritious – and we know a lot of them! 

Try to get all the family involved in your weekly meal-prep, and then it won’t feel like too much of a chore. Plus, if you plan everything in advance, you will find that you feel much more in control and prepared when dinner time comes. 

Speedy Stir Fry


Everybody loves a stir fry. It’s a family favourite that can be whipped up quickly and is packed with plenty of healthy protein and veg. That’s why we made this speedy stir fry our mid-week meal – so you can stock up on all the ingredients cheaply instore and put them all together in your trusty frying pan when you get home.  

Here’s what you'll need:

  • 250g Co-op British chicken breast strips
  • 1 pack Co-op egg noodles
  • 1 pack Co-op mixed vegetable stir fry
  • 1 pack Co-op chow mein stir fry sauce
  • Sesame oil
  • Salt and pepper

Find out how to make speedy stir fry here

One-pot Chilli Con Carne


On a cold, dark night, nothing is more comforting than a bowl of warm chilli con carne. The bonus is that you can make it in advance and keep in the fridge or freezer until you are ready to re-heat it and share. You can serve your chilli with rice or a jacket potato, or why not layer it on top of a portion of nachos with a sprinkle of grated cheese and some sour cream! 

Here’s what you'll need:

  • 500g minced beef
  • 500ml beef stock
  • 400g tin of chopped tomatoes
  • 400g tin of kidney beans
  • 30g chilli seasoning mix
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp tomato ketchup
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 onion
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Basmati rice, jacket potato or nachos to serve

Find out how to make one pot chilli con carne here

Chicken and Sweet Potato Traybake 


Traybakes are notoriously easy to make – you basically place everything onto a tray, put in the oven, and hey presto your delicious meal is ready to serve! This traybake features sweet potatoes, which are highly nutritious and a great source of fibre, vitamins, and minerals. Perfect for boosting your immune system and warding off those nasty winter bugs. 

Here’s what you'll need:

  • 500g sweet potatoes
  • 6 boneless chicken thigh fillets
  • 160g curly kale
  • 4 carrots
  • 2 red onions
  • 8 garlic cloves
  • 150ml chicken stock
  • 2 lemons
  • 2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp dried rosemary
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 ½ tbsp olive oil

Find out how to make chicken and sweet potato traybake here

Philly Stuffed Mushrooms 


Cheap vegetarian meals don’t come better than this one. The beauty of this recipe is that you can choose any cheese that you prefer (or one that is on offer instore) and smother it over your mushrooms. Simply serve with some salad leaves and you have a filling and tasty dinner that takes only a matter of minutes to prepare. 

Here’s what you'll need:

  • 500g fresh mushrooms; medium size
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 200g Philadelphia (or other cream cheese)
  • 80g Stilton (or other blue cheese), crumbled
  • ½ small onion, finely chopped

Find out how to make Philly stuffed mushrooms here

Ham and Cheese Omelette


Omelettes are a great source of protein and are also very quick and easy to prepare. You can also customise your omelette easily, meaning that every family member can choose their own fillings without it being too much hassle for whoever is in charge of cooking. Whether you like the classic ham and cheese or prefer a vegetarian mushroom, onion and pepper variety, there is sure to be an omelette recipe to make everyone smile at dinner time. 

Here's what you’ll need:

  • 30g grated mature cheddar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 slices Co-op honey roast ham
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • Salt and pepper, to season

Find out how to make ham and cheese omelettes here

Sausage and Mushroom Tagliatelle


If you are looking for a pasta dish that is budget-friendly and easy to prepare, then this sausage and mushroom tagliatelle dish is just what you need. Featuring only four ingredients, you can whip it up in just ten minutes from start to finish - making it a great one for when you get in late from work, or when you’ve returned home freezing cold after football training. 

Here’s what you'll need:

  • 500g Co-op tagliatelle
  • 300ml Co-op soured cream
  • 8 Co-op pork sausages, sliced
  • 6 Co-op chestnut mushrooms, chopped

Find out how to make sausage and mushroom tagliatelle here

Freezer Fillers 

It’s always a good idea to stock up on some freezer favourites to enjoy alongside your home-cooked meals. That’s why we offer a range of fantastic Freezer Deals featuring all the best branded frozen foods that we all know and love. When you need a break from cooking or need to prepare something in a hurry, it’s always helpful to know that you can open the freezer and find something tasty to feed the family with.


We hope that you have found this guide useful to help you plan some easy cheap meals on a budget. Remember, we have plenty of Special Offers on all your favourite foods, and hundreds more amazing recipes to try out too.  

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