Christmas is an expensive time of year! When you’re on a low income and have a tight budget, coming up with the cash to host a festive feast is a challenge. Chances are you stretched your pressie shopping budget and now need to find a few savvy ways to save on all those yummy Christmas menu favourites.
Here’s our top tips for a cheap yet tasty Christmas menu
Set a budget
- Sure, you might want to dine on the finest festive cuisine. But can you afford it?
- Do your sums to come up with the budget for your Christmas menu.
- Then work out what foods and recipes fit into your price range.
Plan ahead – start buying now!
- Budgeting your menu is the first and most important step.
- Now keep an eye out for supermarket specials. Grab menu essentials while they’re on a super-cheap special – and before they sell out!
- The freezer is your friend – you won’t believe how many foods can be safely frozen! Look for cheap specials on items for your Christmas menu – and pop them in the freezer now.
Hot tip: Word on the street is that prawn prices are going to be through the roof this Christmas. Beat the price rise and stock up now! Then just pop them in the freezer and keep them on ice until Christmas comes.
Choose one indulgence
- You don’t have to scrimp on everything – it is Christmas after all.
- Treat yourself to one carefully chosen indulgence and make it the hero of your Christmas feast.
- Whether it’s smoked salmon, prawns, lamb or a leg of ham, build you festive fare budget around the centrepiece of your Christmas meal.
Don’t overlook the foods already in your pantry
- If your pantry is anything like the Aussie average, there’s a load of decent food just sitting in there at risk of going to waste!
- Before planning your Christmas menu and grocery shop, do a pantry clear-out.
- Save cash by building many of your festive dishes around using up the pantry items you already have on hand.
Get savvy with the booze
- Alcohol takes up a big chunk of the average entertaining budget.
- Spread the cost of your festive cheer by purchasing your favourite drinks progressively as they come on special in the lead-up to Christmas.
- Even better, if you’re playing host ask your guests to BYO booze so that you share the cost between you.
Put an Aussie twist on your festive menu
- Making the traditional Christmas pudding is an expensive exercise. All that dried fruit and brandy costs a lot of cash!
- Give your Christmas meal an Aussie flair with this budget yet beautiful Christmas wreath pavlova.
Need more inspiration?
Browse through these delicious and affordable Christmas recipe ideas.