Looking for healthy dinners for family on a budget? This is the best collection I’ve ever found. You’ll be able to make that one meal and feel proud of your choices. You’ll also have time to enjoy with your family after dinner and have dessert without guilt.
I love this time of the year-the weather is starting to cool off, I can finally wear jeans and coats, and it’s time for family dinners!
Cheap family recipes
Make an affordable dinner for the whole family with our budget-friendly recipe ideas from warming curries to thrifty pasta dishes and hearty burgers.
For seven days of family-focussed budget meals try our budget family meal plan
- Sausage & mushroom raguA star rating of 4.6 out of 5.32 ratingsDo something different with sausages and transform them into this veg-packed ragu. Great for a family dinner, serve with couscous, mash or pasta
- Sloppy joesA star rating of 4.2 out of 5.34 ratingsSloppy joes are a simple, American staple the whole family can get stuck into. Add a dash of spicy chipotle or smoky barbecue sauce to the minced beef filling for some zing.
- Peanut butter chickenA star rating of 4 out of 5.308 ratingsYou’ll love this new, budget chicken dish. Any leftovers freeze well and make a handy lunch.
- Lemon & greens pesto pastaA star rating of 4.4 out of 5.15 ratingsPrep, cook and serve this quick and easy lemon and green veg pasta in just 15 minutes. It’s perfect for busy days, and will be loved by the whole family
- Tomato & pasta soupA star rating of 4.6 out of 5.63 ratingsMake our simple, budget-friendly tomato, pasta and chickpea soup in just 30 minutes. This easy, vegetarian family meal is healthy and even low fat
- Summer fish stewA star rating of 4.5 out of 5.17 ratingsThis storecupboard fish stew is bulked out with bread and is full of fresh, summer flavours
- Chestnut mushroom, fennel & bacon fusilliA star rating of 4.2 out of 5.31 ratingsStore cupboard ingredients, spices and seasonal veg make this recipe the tastiest way to get 3 of your 5 a day
- Cheat’s beetroot biriyaniA star rating of 4.4 out of 5.27 ratingsCook this beetroot biriyani and freeze the leftovers for busy weeknights. With colourful beetroot taking centre stage, it’s full of spices and is a flavourful dish
- Halloumi & watermelon bulgur saladA star rating of 5 out of 5.17 ratingsA satisfying vegetarian salad of contrasting flavours and textures. The salty cheese is cooled by crisp, sweet watermelon
- Pork & apple burgersA star rating of 4.4 out of 5.26 ratingsOur budget-friendly pork and apple burgers are perfect for an easy and delicious family supper. This easy midweek meal takes just ten minutes to prepare
- Sausage raguA star rating of 4.6 out of 5.345 ratingsFeed the family this comforting, budget-friendly sausage ragu with pasta. You can freeze the leftovers for another time and it tastes just as good
- Super smoky bacon & tomato spaghettiA star rating of 4.4 out of 5.199 ratingsServe your pasta with a budget-busting tomato and paprika sauce. It’s a healthy choice to boot
- Pizza baked potatoA star rating of 4.6 out of 5.15 ratingsThis budget-friendly supper combines two favourites in one dish. Top your jacket spuds with cheese, tomato, pepperoni and basil
- Spaghetti puttanescaA star rating of 4.7 out of 5.109 ratingsCook up this classic sauce in one pan, then toss with spaghetti for a simple midweek meal. It’s budget-friendly too, making it a great meal for the family
- Kedgeree with poached eggA star rating of 4.1 out of 5.25 ratingsThis curried fish and rice dish is suitable for brunch, breakfast or a main course at dinnertime. Replace traditional boiled eggs with poached
- Spicy sausage & bean one-potA star rating of 4.3 out of 5.42 ratingsA saucy, warming casserole with Cumberland sausages, chilli gravy and kidney beans. It’s budget-friendly and ready in less than 30 minutes too
- Mushroom, ricotta & rocket tartA star rating of 4.5 out of 5.26 ratingsThis puff pastry slice requires minimum fuss. Use Italian cheese as a simple base and top with garlic mushrooms and salad leaves
- Spicy oven-baked chicken & chipsA star rating of 4.7 out of 5.11 ratingsA midweek budget supper of roast chicken wings with homemade chips and Cajun spices
- Oaty katsu chicken dippersA star rating of 2.7 out of 5.9 ratingsMake a batch of these finger-lickin’ chicken dippers for an easy and fun family meal. Serve with rice, salad and a peanut butter dipping sauce
- Bhaji frittataA star rating of 4 out of 5.17 ratingsThis lunchbox or picnic-friendly dish takes an Italian-style thick omelette and adds some Indian spice, along with potatoes, peas and coriander
- Tuna & sweetcorn fish cakesA star rating of 4.2 out of 5.32 ratingsTinned fish and sweetcorn are a lifesaver when you need to rustle up some simple potato patties for a healthy, budget-friendly supper
- Lamb & chickpea fritter wrapsA star rating of 4 out of 5.14 ratingsSpiced lamb and chickpea patties with yogurt, coriander and salad make the perfect filling for flatbread
- Mixed-bean chilli with wedgesA star rating of 4.7 out of 5.142 ratingsA warming bowl of meat-free comfort food. Make extra for the freezer
- Crispy bacon & sausage carbonaraA star rating of 4.2 out of 5.29 ratingsEggs, bacon and sausage – not a breakfast plate, but a delicious budget pasta dish with creamy sauce and parsley
healthy dinners on a budget
11Healthy slow cooker French chicken recipe
Slow-cooked dishes can be healthy (and creamy!) with a few tweaks, like this low-cal creamy French chicken.
12Healthy tuna mornay
For low calorie comfort food try this healthier version of classic tuna pasta bake.
13Healthier chicken Diane
For a healthy-ish twist on the traditional, whip up this creamy chicken Diane for a family dinner tonight.
14Sweet potato and ham fritters
These crunchy fritters are low in fat, quick to prepare and chock full of veg. Perfect!
15Healthier one-pan baked fried rice
Better-for-you fried rice cooked in the one pan in the oven – it’s a midweek meal miracle!
16Pearl couscous with roasted pumpkin and chorizo
Sweet pumpkin and spicy chorizo add Spanish flair to pearls of couscous.
17Healthy Spanish chicken and beans
Searching for healthy meal prep recipe ideas? This low-cal one-pan chicken and beans dish ticks all the right boxes.
18Super-veg beef chow mein tray bake
With lots of sneaky veg, this healthier version of everyone’s favourite Chinese beef chow mein is made even easier by cooking it all together in the one tray.
19Healthy nasi goreng
Ready in 30 minutes, this Indonesian fried rice is packed with pork fillet, prawns and vegies, and makes for a family-friendly dinner.
20Open chicken pies
Full of veges and flavour, these easy chicken pies make a quick and kid-friendly dinner!
budget family meals under $5 a serve
Make your weekly shopping budget go the distance with these cheap and cheerful dinner ideas that cost just $5 (or less!) per serve.
Ricotta and semi-dried tomato pancakes with rocket salad
Who says you can’t have pancakes for dinner! This budget-friendly savoury version comes in at under $3 a serve.
This budget-friendly weeknight winner is made from just 5-ingredients.
One-Pan Garlic Butter Chicken with Mushrooms
At under $5 a serve, this budget one-pan chicken dinner means less washing up!
Beef and Potato Layered Casserole
A budget-friendly tasty casserole made with beef mince and frozen vegies.
Speedy Thai chilli jam chicken
Made with cheap ingredients like mince, rice and vegies, this budget-friendly dinner is on the table in under 30 minutes and will cost you just under $3 per serve. Win win!
Malaysian Satay Chicken
Inspired by the Asian flavours of Malaysia, you can freeze this super-easy chicken satay in advance so you can whip it out during busy weeknights.
Creamy tuna mornay
A creamy version of tuna mornay with plenty of vegetables.
Creamy chicken pasta
A delicious, easy to make pasta meal for the whole family. My kids love this, and ask for it regularly.
Chicken and ricotta cannelloni
A scrumptious dinner that is easy and very tasty.
Microwave roast chicken
So easy and tasty, you will never roast a chicken in your oven again!
Pork and apple rissoles
A tasty rissole with a delicate apple flavour. A big hit with the family.
Baked cheesy meatballs
A tasty and simple recipe that’s sure to be a winner with the whole family.
Sour cream quiche
A creamy quiche that’s easy to make.
Slow Cooker Mexican Chicken
A delicious and easy economical meal for the slow cooker.
This simple chicken curry is a cinch to prepare on a busy weeknight and perfect for feeding the family! It uses coconut cream for richness and you can adjust the amount of curry powder if you prefer it more or less spicy.