Home LifestyleLife and Work Hacks The £2 A Day Feed My Family Frugal Challenge

The £2 A Day Feed My Family Frugal Challenge

by LaurettaCWright
frugal challenge

Voucherbox got in touch to ask if I’d like to take on their #2poundchallenge, which basically challenged me to feed my family for a frugal £2 a day per head.

The voucher publisher teamed up with UK-based charity Zamcog to raise awareness of the fact that it costs £2 to feed and educate a child in Zambia every day.

And, in an effort to change the way we think about food, Zamcog challenged the blogging community to cut down on their food spending and waste for one day – and write about their experience.

For every blog post documenting the challenge, Voucherbox would donate money to the charity.

So I had to ask myself one question: could I be super frugal for the day AND convince the family to take part in the name of a good cause? Absolutely!

So here goes…

The dilemma?

My first thought about the challenge was ‘This is going to be a cinch!’ I'm a pretty thrifty person anyway and as my kids have become older, they're a little less fussy about what they eat.

However, not only was I signing myself up for the thrift challenge, it suddenly dawned on me that I also had to bear in mind that I'm on the Slimming World plan and, for me, one little cheat would mean a ride on the slippery slope to piling on the pounds again.

So I had to give this some serious thought. This would mean a frugal challenge that EVERYONE in our family could stick to – and a sensible plan that wouldn’t steer me off the Slimming World plan.

I also wanted to be creative, but sadly my creativity as a cook extends to buying a microwave meal and sticking something on top of it (cheese) or dressing it up with a salad. Yes, really.

So I consulted VIP, the master chef of the household – and someone who is great at cooking meals and being versatile.

The Menu

As we were doing this challenge at the weekend, we had the luxury of time on our side, which mean that the kids didn’t have to be sent to school with a packed lunch. Instead, we could take our time to shop around to get the best prices for our frugal day – and make some wholesome meals too.

After a few days pondering what we could have, which involved doing all the calculations with how much things cost and how much to buy to feed the four of us (that’s 12 plates of meals in total for just £8!), here's what we decided on:


Everyone in our family likes omelettes, so omelettes it is. Actually, my youngest doesn’t like eggs, but she seems to accept them as an omelette (maybe she hasn’t yet worked out that omlettes are made of eggs…?!)

So from Lidl we purchased Woodcote Free Range eggs 12 large- £1.75, 750g Oaklands Red Onions 56p and Lovilio grated Mozzarella (200g)- £1.08

Total: £2.83


the frugal challenge

Fortunately the kids had got used to having baked potatoes as a canteen lunch choice at school, so it was an easy choice – this, mixed with baked beans.

From ASDA we purchased Grower’s Selection Baking potatoes (pack of 4) – £1

And from Lidl we bought Newgate baked beans 29p

Total: £1.29


the frugal challenge

Dinner needed to be warm as the temperature (at the time of taking the challenge) was freezing! Everyone in the household liked spaghetti bolognese and it worked with my Slimming World plan a treat.

From Lidl we purchased 1 x 500g of Birchwood Farm Beef Steak Lean Steak Mince 12% fat at £2.29, 240g of Freshona Chopped Tomatoes for 25p, 500g Simply Spaghetti for 20p and 1kg of carrots for 43p.

We also used the onions we purchased for breakfast and found a clove a garlic in the cupboard to add a bit of flavour.

Total – £3.73

The Grand total of all our meals came to….(cue drum role)…


Yay! We Did It!

AND….check this out (she writes with a huge beaming smile) we even had change – 15p!

So how was it?

Once I’d explained to the kids what we were doing and why, they were up for the challenge – I think it helped when I told them it would give them bragging rights at school!

Throughout the day I kept praising the kids to tell them how well they were doing – and when they were peckish in between meals I improvised with the ingredients purchased. For example, I cut the carrots into small sticks for them to nibble on.

In fact, this would be one of my top tips if you’re doing something similar, this along with drinking lots of fluids!

I have to admit, it was a tough challenge. A couple of times I caught myself absent-mindedly reaching for a yoghurt or boiled sweets and I had to stop myself.

frugal challenge

But all in all, it was mission accomplished and I felt quite smug about getting through the day without any major hiccups.

In fact, if I’m honest I’d even go as far to say that it’s been a bit of a learning curve for all of us, highlighting how much food we really do waste – as well as questioning whether we really need that bag of crisps in between meals.

And if the new us means a more frugal family, that can’t be a bad thing.

Information about the work of Zamcog and the #2poundchallenge

Julie-Anne Uggla, Founder of Zamcog says “We’re delighted to work with Voucherbox.co.uk to raise awareness to one of the integral aspects of Zamcog’s work. At the Shitima School we not only educate children to improve their lives but also provide basic needs such as food and clean water. Any money raised from this campaign will go directly to funding nourishment at the Shitima School. The blogging community are incredibly influential and with their help we can raise money and awareness for Zamcog and continue to support our children.”

Shane Forster, General Manager at Voucherbox.co.uk says “The work that Zamcog does is truly inspirational and we’re very happy to be able to support the charity and raise awareness for their cause. Voucherbox.co.uk are all about saving money - challenging people to live frugally for one day and cutting down on their spending is what we’re all about. On top of that, we get to support a fantastic cause and really give something back.”

* This was a collaborative post, but in support of this initiative I have chosen to support Zamcog by donating my fee.



Fiona jk42 29th June 2018 - 7:47 pm

I found this an interesting read. We are on a very limited budget and I find it a challenge not to fill up on cheap carbs but to make sure we get enough protein and greens. We make a point of always looking in the discounted section at the supermarket – they mark stuff down in the evening if it is reaching its “best before” date. Today I got a bag of 8 uncooked beetroot for 50p! I’m planning to make a lovely soup with them so that’s one lunch sorted.

LaurettaCWright 22nd July 2018 - 7:32 pm

That’s great Fiona – sounds like you’re really thrifty when it comes to making the most of the supermarket discounts.

Judith Allen 11th June 2018 - 2:48 am

I know I’m late to the party here, but this was a really interesting read. Well done with this, nutritious and tasty sounding.

LaurettaCWright 13th June 2018 - 3:02 pm

Thanks Judith – it’s a post that is relevant at any time really.

Voucherbox 20th February 2017 - 9:40 am

Thank you for your post! We will be donating £50 to Zamcog which will feed, educate and clothe an at-risk child in Zambia for 1 month.

LaurettaCWright 20th February 2017 - 12:59 pm

That’s fantastic – thank you!

Cal at Family Makes 6th February 2017 - 4:02 pm

You did so well – I’m not sure we could manage as I need gluten free and that’s mega expensive! Plus my growing boys seem to eat non-stop from the minute they get in from school, and their school dinners alone are £2 per day! So well done team Wright!

LaurettaCWright 6th February 2017 - 8:06 pm

Ah thanks – I’m not going to lie, it was tough!

Lisa Lambert (mumdadplus4) 31st January 2017 - 5:56 pm

That’s awesome meal planning, I love using fresh produce and the OH can’t believe how much I have saved over the last months meal planning and shopping in Aldi
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LaurettaCWright 31st January 2017 - 8:09 pm

That’s great Lisa – well done you!

Grant R 30th January 2017 - 8:29 pm

Good job! I have to admit that my wife is the best food shopper I know of. She plans meals and saves a fortune. Me? I’m rubbish. A terrible impulse buyer!

Anna 29th January 2017 - 11:47 pm

That’s really amazing, well done for raising awareness. I always thought that eating healthy while on a budget is impossible glad to be proven wrong. x

LaurettaCWright 30th January 2017 - 6:30 pm

Thanks Anna!

five little doves 29th January 2017 - 8:01 pm

We recently did this too and thankfully we survived it, ha! My kids moaned a bit about the lack of pudding and treats, but it was really important to realise how much money we waste on food each week!

Lynne 29th January 2017 - 1:42 pm

Well done to all of you, I bet the kids were missing their sweet treats that day.

LaurettaCWright 29th January 2017 - 1:51 pm

Thanks Lynne – we made sure we didn’t choose Saturdau night treat night!

LaurettaCWright 13th December 2017 - 2:39 pm

Ha ha! They certainly were!

Kara 29th January 2017 - 8:12 am

It just shows that it can be done but not sure I would like to live like that all the time – I do love an omlette though

MEl 28th January 2017 - 6:51 pm

That’s a brilliant challenge, and inspiring too! Well done for managing to do it with change to spare 🙂

LaurettaCWright 29th January 2017 - 1:56 pm

Thanks very much!

LaurettaCWright 30th January 2017 - 6:30 pm

Thank you Mel ?

Ana De- Jesus 28th January 2017 - 3:35 pm

Such a tough challenge but well done for doing it and hey dinner even sounded appetizing. Its great you and other bloggers are raising awareness!

LaurettaCWright 29th January 2017 - 1:56 pm

Thanks Ana – dinner was lovely in fact!

Renna 28th January 2017 - 10:05 am

I love this. It just goes to prove that actually you can eat healthy on a budget. People use so many excuses for not eating healthily and say healthy food is expensive. Ha…..they should be reading this post. Well done you !!

LaurettaCWright 28th January 2017 - 10:46 am

Thanks very much Renna! Glad to have inspired 🙂

Joanna 27th January 2017 - 1:48 pm

You’ve done really well I took part in the challenge too it definitely gets you thinking about what eat.

LaurettaCWright 27th January 2017 - 8:41 pm

That’s great Joanna – how did it go for you? Have you got a blog post I can read?

Tania 27th January 2017 - 9:17 am

Well done! That’s really inspired me. I am so angry with myself as I had to throw out an unopened bag of pak choi this morning. I had completely forgotten about it at the back of the veg drawer and it is expensive and also one of the few greens Gary will eat. Definitely going to do better in future. x

LaurettaCWright 27th January 2017 - 9:35 am

Ah thanks Tania – great to know I’ve inspired you… I’m going to be trying harder too!


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