To help them save some much-needed cash, chef Gary Usher helps slash their £800 a month food bill by offering a crash course in meal planning and easy delicious recipes. He said: “In order save more and spend less I’ve got a challenge.
By sticking to this challenge Mabel and Saul can reduce their monthly food shop bill by £130 and their takeaway bill by another £290. So it’s a potential saving of £425.
Mabel said: “Sometimes it’s just getting into a new habit, so we’ll try to keep that in mind and do that.”
As new parents, Mabel and Saul are constantly busy and too tired to cook. They spend above average at the supermarket every month and then buy take-aways every other day.
Mabel said: “Since having Thea we do not have time to cook … we try our best but it’s not always possible.”
Their monthly food shop is £390, £100 more than the average two adults one toddler family and they also spend £400 per month on takeaways.
A recent survey revealed that takeaways tripled in the first 12 months of the pandemic, so this is normal.
However overall, this costs them £5040 a year and that’s money that can be cut down and saved.
Right after their daughter Thea was born, and during the pandemic, Saul lost his job as a sales manager.
Mabel’s income as a senior project manager has been keeping them afloat however without proper guidance, Anna warned things could get worse.
Saul said: “Not worrying that we don’t have anything until the next pay check would be a great weight off.”
Chef Gary gave them tips on how to reduce their takeaway habit and helped them with quick and easy recipes to cook at home when they are tired.
He said “I am shocked. That spending is massive, but I get it, they have a 17-month-old, it’s a convenience thing but it’s something I can help with.
“Don’t be afraid to buy big joints of meat and then have the confidence to break that down. You have three different meals for three different nights.
“Pork belly is one of the best cuts of meat you can buy.”
Gary taught them that making meals can be easy when you’re shattered. One important thing is forward planning.
Gary showed them how to make three meals out of one piece of pork belly.
The second meal he showed was ‘Pop luck pork stir fry’. This was made in a matter of minutes for £2.47 per portion compared to the £9.50 per portion that they would end up end spending at their local takeaway.