23 Apr 2018

Family meals for $60 a week

From Nine To Noon, 11:36 am on 23 April 2018

For many New Zealanders, the convenience of the meal plan and food delivery service My Food Bag is way out of reach financially. Now there's a seasonal meal planner for families on a budget.

For around $60 a week, a family of six can eat five dinner meals using a free meal planner booklet from Easy Choice - Family Kai, an initiative of Love Food Hate Waste NZ.

Easy Choice Family Kai

Photo: Easy Choice - Family Kai

Auckland mother Kimberley Manning, who uses the plan, shares with us a couple of her favourite recipes – Moroccan Chicken Stew and Creamy Rice Pudding.

Kimberley says that when she was invited to trial Easy Choice last year she wasn't doing a lot of cooking.

"I'm useless at going this is what I've got for food this week, and trying to make a plan.

"My poor husband works 10, 12 hours and I think he deserves dinner on the table when he gets home ... [Plus me] being a mother is a full-time job times two."

Now Kimberley is teaching others to cook – she's already given a workshop to her mum's group.

Kimberley Manning with daughter Fleur

Kimberley Manning with daughter Fleur Photo: Love Food Hate Waste NZ

Most of the ingredients the Easy Choice recipes call for will already be in the cupboard or fridge, but the plan has also expanded Kimberley's cooking, she says.

"If Brussels sprouts were on sale I'd be like, 'What am I going to cook with those?'And then trying to figure out if i have enough money for this and that – it's just too busy when you're a mum.

"That's when people go 'Oh let's just have takeaways or something easy'."

Kimberley likes the extra notes in the recipes on which meals are good to freeze and which are safe to eat the following day.

"I love it. I love that I've got enough to invite people over for dinner and have leftovers for lunch the next day."

Moroccan Chicken Stew

Moroccan Chicken Stew Photo: Love Food Hate Waste NZ

She recommends the Moroccan Chicken Stew for busy people as it cooks up well in a crockpot.

"If you've been working all day and you want to come home to a ready-made dinner, chuck that all in the crockpot first thing in the morning, leave it on low and come home to a nice warm dinner."


You can find more recipes from Love Food Hate Waste NZ here: