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Big Budget Round Up and cheap and tasty Autumn Grain Bowl recipe

Posted Oct 06 2011 10:45am

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I’ve had a much better week than last week on my budget challenge now that we are back to work and in a routine again. I’ve made some great budget friendly meals and have been really good at sticking to my shopping lists and not adding other things to the trolley!

Some of the thrifty things I’ve been doing this week include:

  • Continuing to make the most of the discount available at my green grocers and using discount supermarkets like Aldi and Lidl.
  • I’ve started to use the Stay Fresh Bags I got from Lakeland a while ago to store veggies in the fridge, keeping them fresher for longer and reducing waste.
  • After a tip from the lovely JAG , I’ve started to experiment with using coconut oil as a facial moisturiser. I’ve been alternating it with my usual night cream. I was concerned it would be too oily but it absorbs so well into my skin and leaves it smooth and glowing!
  • Now that I’ve used up all of my facial wipes I’ve started to use my Lush Ultrabland face cleanser and washable face cloths to save a little bit of cash there.
  • I cooked my first pot of beans from scratch, it was so easy and they tasted delicious
  • I made some squash puree (see recipe below!) – anyone in the UK knows how expensive tins of Libby’s are – I’m saving the couple I have in the cupboard for a some thing special.
  • Sold a load of stuff on Ebay!

Other bloggers taking part so far:

Sarah @ Every Day’s a Picnic

Deise Gal @ Witty Blog Name Pending…

Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes

True Penny @ Cool Beans

Danielle @ Love Life Eat Laugh

Alissa @ Not Just Apples

Sarah @ Sweet Potato Sarah

If your trying to stick to a budget right how is it going? I think I’m going to roughly try and stick with making Thursday’s a regular Big Budget Challenge round up post – so if you are posting anything with a budget theme that you’d like to share, or if you’d like to join the challenge you still can, just send me an email with the link to your post!

Now for a great budget busting recipe for Vegan Mofo!


This is a lovely recipe that uses cheap, seasonal ingredients – it really is like autumn in a bowl!

Autumn Grain Bowl (vegan, makes 2 servings, adapted from Pumpkin Apple Harvest Rice from Healthy Happy Life)


  • 1 cup of cooked grain of choice – I used a mix of brown rice and amaranth
  • 3/4 cup of pumpkin or squash puree – I made my own by blending roasted butternut with some water and a little nutritional yeast in a food processor – much cheaper than Libby’s!
  • 1/2 tsp of cinnamon or to taste
  • 1 cup of cooked chickpeas (or 1 tin)
  • 1 small chopped apple – I used coxes – so cheap right now!
  • 1 small finely chopped onion
  • 2 tbsp of raisins
  • 2 tbsp of walnuts, chopped and toasted if you prefer
  • 1/4 cup of fresh parsley finely chopped

Combine the grain, puree, chickpeas and cinnamon in a large bowl. Warm through in the microwave or on the stove for a few minutes. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well. Serve!


I served mine on top of of a pile of steamed green cabbage with shoyu, yum!


If your not fan of raw onion you can easily leave that out and this will still taste fab, you could even add other veggies such as chopped carrots or mushrooms too, whatever is cheap! This would also make great leftovers for lunch the next day eaten slightly chilled, and you could easily double the recipe if needed.

I’m loving how cheap seasonal produce can be – especially the range of tasty apples available, and of course squash! What’s your favourite cheap seasonal fruit or vegetable at the moment?

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