Cooking on a budget: Aussie’s under $10 soup recipe is a huge hit!

Have you noticed that grocery shopping has been getting more and more expensive lately? It's enough to make anyone feel like they're being squeezed for every dollar.

But don't worry - there is a way to fight back against these rising costs, and it's called meal planning. Basically, it's like creating a shopping list for your meals for the week and then sticking to it like glue when you hit the grocery store.

Not only does this help you avoid the temptation to buy unnecessary items (we're looking at you, expensive snack foods!), but it also cuts down on food waste.

Think about it: when you plan out your meals and buy only the ingredients you need, you're less likely to have random items in your fridge or pantry that go bad before you can use them.

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Many Aussies are in desperate need of tips and tricks on how to stretch their dollar further, especially when it comes to meals. Credit: Unsplash/Conscious Design.

Another approach is to stick to recipes that are not only budget-friendly but also filling and healthy as well. This can help ensure that you're getting the most bang for your buck when it comes to your meals.

If you're looking for some recipe inspiration, you might want to check out Jen Hanlon's $10 meal challenge videos.

Jen is a self-taught cook from Australia who has become a bit of a celebrity on TikTok thanks to her gourmet-style recipes that use affordable ingredients from the supermarket.

Her recipes have drawn the attention of half-a-million people who are all looking for ways to make well-rounded meals on a budget. So why not give her recipes a try and see how much money you can save on your weekly food bill?

One of her latest recipes is Sweet Potato Soup, and we've attached the video above so you can give it a try for yourself! Here are the ingredients you'll need:
  • Three medium-sized sweet potatoes
  • One brown onion, diced
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 400g can of chickpeas (rinsed)
  • 1 400g can of coconut cream
  • 3 cups of chicken (or veg) stock
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • ½ tsp of ginger powder (optional)
  • 1 tsp of chilli flakes (optional)


First, dice some onions and peel and cut up some sweet potatoes. Then, in a pot with a thin layer of oil, cook the onions and add some minced garlic for extra flavour.

As the onions cook, add the sweet potatoes and the stock, give everything a good mix, and turn up the heat. Don't forget to drain and rinse the chickpeas, then add them to the pot too.

Next, it's time to blend everything together using a stick blender. Keep blending until everything is nice and mushy. Finally, add some creamy coconut milk to make it extra rich and flavourful.

If there are still some chunks left, don't hesitate to blend some more until you reach your desired consistency. Serve up a bowl of this comforting soup and enjoy the delicious flavours that come together in each spoonful!

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Jen Hanlon's Sweet Potato Soup has been a hit with hundreds of users on social media. Credit: TikTok.

Jen's recipe was a hit with hundreds of users on social media, and many have taken the time to comment and thank her for the delicious and budget-friendly meal.

'Cooking can be overwhelming sometimes. This is so easy! Thank you,' said one user, while another went on to say, 'You're the mum we all need - I love this!' A third user even reported her experience with trying the recipe, saying, 'I made this tonight. Empty bowls all around! Thank you so much.'

But the appreciation doesn't stop there. Some users have even suggested tweaks to the recipe to make it even better. One user recommended removing one sweet potato and adding some carrots instead, along with some red Thai chilli paste for a little extra kick. Another user suggested adding a sachet of cheap French onion soup for added flavour.

And if you're looking for a little extra texture in your soup, one user suggested putting chickpeas in the oven with a bit of olive oil and sprinkling them on top for a nice crunch.

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A budget-savvy mum has revealed her $20-or-less recipe for a cheesy pasta bake. Credit: TikTok/Jen Hanlon.

If you have a little more room in your budget, you might want to try Jen’s Corn Relish Dip Pasta Bake. This delicious and easy-to-make dish costs under $20 and is sure to be a hit with your family or friends.

Here are the ingredients you'll need: (Total - $17.22)
  • 60g bag of baby spinach - $2
  • Brown onion - 42c
  • 250g block of Coles cheddar cheese - $4.40
  • 2 x Coles corn relish dip - $2.20 each
  • 250g bacon - $4
  • 500g rigatoni pasta - $1
  • 420g tin of corn kernels - $1

To make the dish, start by boiling a pot of water and cooking your pasta for 1-2 minutes less than the packet instructions, reserving 3/4 cup of the water before you drain.

Preheat your oven to 200 degrees Celsius. While the pasta is cooking, dice an onion and some bacon. Heat a frying pan and add your oil of choice (we recommend extra virgin olive oil). Cook the onion and bacon for 2-3 minutes until they're slightly browned.

Then, add both dips and mix everything together. Add the corn and baby spinach and continue mixing. If the sauce is too thick, add some of the reserved pasta water to thin it out.

Once the pasta is cooked, add it to the pan and stir it in with the sauce. Make sure everything is evenly combined. Prep a baking dish and add the pasta mixture to it. Sprinkle some cheese on top, and then bake the dish in the oven for approximately 25 minutes or until the cheese is golden brown.

Serve and enjoy!

Cooking on a budget doesn't have to be bland or boring. In fact, one ingredient that can add a ton of flavour and nutrition to your meals while still being affordable is tinned food! And if you're looking for creative and delicious ways to use tinned food in your cooking, Jen got you covered.

She has crafted some amazing recipes that only require a single tin of chickpeas plus a few simple ingredients that you probably already have in your pantry. Whether you're a seasoned cook or a beginner, these recipes are sure to impress and satisfy your taste buds without breaking the bank.

Check them out by clicking this link.

We're glad to have provided some helpful and budget-friendly recipes for you to try out! Don't forget to let us know in the comments how your meals turn out. We'd love to hear about your cooking experiences and see your pictures too!

If you have any other recipes you'd like to share with us, feel free to leave them in the comments below. Sharing recipes is a great way to help others eat well on a budget, so don't be shy.

Happy cooking, everyone!
I’m a soup lover. It brings to mind Saturday evenings when I was growing up, bonding with my mum over making the soup for Sunday’s lunch. I raised my family on lots of different soups, and always have soup ready to eat or in the freezer. As part of my meal prep I make my own stock, and grate or chop a variety vegetables to keep in the freezer so that I always have the makings of a pot of soup.

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