The Cookbook Shelf: Feed Your Family for £20 a Week

13 May 2020

I love cooking, I started cooking for myself from a very young age due to a difference in taste to my family, and it's something I thoroughly enjoy doing. I'm no Masterchef and you definitely wouldn't catch me writing my own cookbook, but I really enjoy the entire process and thankfully, I'm yet to have any complaints about my cooking. I share food, our meal plans and food shops, cookbooks I'm using recipes from and everything in between on my Instagram stories, so I figured a proper look into my cookbook shelf was overdue. 

feed your family for £20 a day cookbook review

I recently relocated my cookbooks from a kitchen cupboard to a prominent shelf in my bookcase. We needed the space in the kitchen, but I'd been considering it for a while as I like the idea of books full of flavour and new things to try, being where all the family can access them. I want the girls to be as excited by food as I am, and now they're in the bookcase in the dining area of our open-plan living room, she asks more often to find a recipe to try together or help me pick dinners for the meal plan.

The cookbooks in my ever-growing collection are not extravagant or full to the brim with recipes fit for Michelin star restaurants and dinner parties. Instead, I opt for budget-friendly, diverse, flavourful recipes from cooks and chefs who use more everyday ingredients, with a variety of cuisines and dishes all the family can enjoy. I have a long list of cookbooks on my to-buy list, so expect to see this shelf grow - I don't think it'll be long until we need a second bookcase! 

My most recent cookbook purchase is feed your family for £20 a week by Lorna Cooper. I really like cookbooks which focus on creating budget-friendly meals because as a lower-income family, we need to stick to a pretty strict food budget when it comes to meals and snacks. Whilst we have a decent budget to work with, there's little wriggle room and so I like to plan ahead with our meal plans and tend to go for recipes that won't cost us the earth and that's exactly the kind of recipes you'll find in feed your family for £20 a week. 

The book has lots of lovely extras aside from the recipes. To show that you really can feed your family for only £20 a week, there is a full 8-week meal plan and shopping list. If you have a bigger space and a lot of freezer space, I don't doubt you can stick to the budget and create all the lovely meals inside; but if like me you have a fridge/freezer and no extra freezer space, it may not be as easy to stick to the budget as you wouldn't be sticking to the way the meal plans are set out. That said, the recipes are very low-cost and I've yet to come across any ingredients that I'd need to make a special trip for. 

But onto the recipes themselves. For me, the recipes aren't always as flavourful as I would tend to go for when making a meal, but for that reason, they are probably going to suit a lot more people who aren't always adventurous with their flavours and foods. The recipes are so family-friendly, it's a great cookbook if you have little ones because there's so much to try but all with pretty basic ingredients, simple step-by-step guides and nothing takes too long to make. The cookbook itself is laid out very simply, good easy-to-read font and no instruction is too complicated. Each recipe is accompanied by a photo, which is personally my preference when it comes to cookbooks, and the recipes cover everything from breakfast and lunch, dinners and desserts, to snacks and recipes that can be bulk cooked and frozen.

I've only had this cookbook around a month but there are already a few recipes that are firm family favourites. We love the fluffy scotch pancakes, which I make in bulk to stick in the freeze as easy snacks for the girls; just stick them in the toaster for a minute or so to warm them through. The cheesy quesadillas make a great lunch even for the clumsiest of little hands and the couscous and harissa veg salad has provided many a tasty lunch. This is one cookbook that will be sticking around!

Love cooking but need to stick to a budget? Make sure you follow me on Instagram @TattooedTealady where I share lots of scrumptious food, our weekly meal plan and food shops, meal prep and cooking. You can also find me on Twitter @TattooedTealady and over on the Tattooed Tealady Facebook page.