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10 budget-friendly summer dinner ideas

Lemon and garlic chicken caesar salad

Quick, easy meals your family – and wallet – will love

Now the hectic Christmas season is over, it’s time to kick back and enjoy the summer holidays with fresh and delicious family meals. It’s also the perfect time to start getting the household budget back on track, as the new school year beckons and work ramps up again. Our picks are big on flavour but low in price and will feed a family of four for under $5 per serve!

Crispy chicken tacos

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Crispy chicken tacos

Forget Taco Tuesday – serving the family these crispy chicken tacos for dinner is guaranteed to create a smile any day of the week. Plus, the convenience of ready-to-mix American-style coleslaw makes prepping and cooking super-fast – you’ll have dinner on the table in just 20 minutes, and those tacos will disappear even faster!

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Cheesy tomato pork with paprika panko

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Cheesy tomato pork with paprika panko

Serve up layers of flavour in just 30 minutes with this easy recipe for cheesy tomato pork with paprika panko. Thinly sliced pork sizzle steaks take just seconds to cook each side, before they’re topped with tomato, tasty cheese and panko crumbs gently spiced up smoked paprika. The fresh, zesty salad has an added sweetness from the orange in the dressing, but you could also swap the orange for a lemon for extra zing.

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Easy pork ramen

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Easy pork ramen

Making a rich, full-flavoured ramen broth doesn’t need to take hours or days in the kitchen – and who needs that in summer, anyway? This easy pork ramen is super-tasty and super-quick – just 20 minutes from go to woah. It’s a one-bowl wonder the whole family can enjoy and your budget will love you for it, too.

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Mint & honey kebabs with cranberry & kale slaw

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Mint & honey kebabs with cranberry & kale slaw

Take a Greek holiday at home with this great selection of Woolworths’ convenient, ready-to-go ingredients. With these pre-marinated mint and honey lamb kebabs, microwave rice and a vibrant slaw kit, you can serve the family a 20-minute masterpiece that’s summer on a plate.

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Peri-peri chicken with Mediterranean rice

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Peri-peri chicken with Mediterranean rice

For simple summer cooking, nothing beats the ease of a ready-made spice seasoning and pre-mixed salad kit. This peri-peri chicken with Mediterranean rice is all about minimum prep for maximum flavour. In just 30 minutes, you’ll have dinner in the bag – literally – and save time and hassle when it comes to washing up, too.

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Creamy tahini pasta

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Creamy tahini pasta

Here’s a meat-free meal that will satisfy a hungry family after a big day at the beach or in the park in just 25 minutes. Hearty, nutritious and packed with flavour, this creamy tahini pasta combines all the good things – lots of green veggies, low-fat fresh ricotta and wholemeal spaghetti, with the tahini adding another layer of flavour to the sauce. Try this with any green veggies you have on hand, including frozen peas or broad beans, or broccoli florets or green beans.

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Spiced chilli chicken tray bake recipe

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Spiced chilli chicken tray bake

Weeknights wouldn’t be weeknights without a delicious tray bake, and this spiced chilli chicken tray bake is a winner on all counts. Layers of fresh veggies are topped with chicken thighs lightly spiced with curry powder, then oven-baked for just 20 minutes. To make sure the chicken cooks evenly, flatten the chicken thighs slightly to an even thickness before adding to the veggies.

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Lemon & garlic chicken caesar salad

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Lemon & garlic chicken caesar salad

Making a restaurant-style meal at home is too easy with this lemon & garlic chicken caesar salad recipe. Packed with flavour and crunch, it takes just 15 minutes to serve up, and the added creamy goodness of avocado takes it to the next level.

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Tandoori chicken burrito

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Tandoori chicken burrito

Just six ingredients will turn a family weeknight meal into a festival of flavour – and all in 20 minutes. These tandoori chicken burritos are the best of both worlds, featuring tender chicken thighs spiced up with Indian-style curry paste and creamy yoghurt, then piled into soft tortillas with red onion and baby spinach for an easy summer dinner.

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Paprika basa with puttanesca couscous

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Paprika basa with puttanesca couscous

For something so colourful, nutritious and satisfying, it’s hard to believe this paprika basa with puttanesca couscous takes only 20 minutes from prep to plate. The puttanesca couscous – packed with fresh chopped tomato, onion, olive, garlic, lemon zest and parsley – also marries well with whatever low-cost protein you fancy, such as chicken or sausages. Serve it with grilled slices of haloumi for a delicious vegetarian option.

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*The cost per serve is calculated by dividing the approximate cost of the ingredients (excluding ingredients marked as "extra to serve") by the number of serves in the recipe. Ingredient prices are based on standard shelf prices in NSW Woolworths Supermarkets as at [28/11/22].  Prices and products may vary by State and may not be available in all Supermarkets, Woolworths Metro, MetroGo, Woolworths Online (including Everyday Market) and Ampol Woolworths Metro. Where a specific brand is not listed for an ingredient, calculations are based on the price of the Woolworths own brand version of the ingredient or the next cheapest alternative.


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