Pocket friendly meal alternatives

Cheap food alternatives:

This is definitely optional if you don’t need to ration your food costs, you may not follow this budget because YOU’RE PRIVILEGED AND YOU SUCK!!!! Lol just kidding, still it’ll be a fun experiment to see how much extra or unnecessary expenditure we make on food.

When you have to stay indoors for extended periods of time don’t buy items that have short term expiry like bread and milk etc.

Only buy essential staple food, cereals, fruits like grapes, bananas, oranges, apples and vegetables so you know only the impor- KEEP THAT BOTTLE OF NUTELLA DOWN Priti! Good.

Frozen foods, Canned foods, Maggi, Knorr etc. are preferred.

For eg: A MTR ready to eat packet of Paneer Tikka Masala costs upto INR 150 and serves a person two times. It’s cheap and good.

Following is a list of some pocket friendly dishes/packaged food you can try on a daily basis yet adding a bit of variety.

The hack to eating simple food on a daily basis without getting bored of it and saving costs at the same time is to eat small portions of a variety of things.

So Ladies and Gentlemen, I present to you:

The Ratchet Thaali. <gang signs>

Item 1:

I always prefer rice over anything else. Like Mitch Hedberg said rice is a great thing to eat when you’re hungry and want to have 10,000 of something.


Monthly requirement: 4-6 kgs

Price of 1 kg of rice as on 24th March 2020 (India gate basmati rice): INR 216/kg

Cost for entire month: INR 1296

Cost for a day:  INR 43

Calories: 324 approx

You can cook your rice as a pulao, or curd rice or tamarind rice. There are so many recipes you can find on youtube. If you get bored of rice, you can always make idlis and dosas.

If you want to cut costs further I’d suggest switching to Daliya since not a lot of people consume it’ll be in stock too. 1kg of Dailya costs roughly 100Rs. on Grofers and the monthly cost comes to roughly INR 600!

Calories: 222 approx

Item 2:

If you’re not a big fan of rice, I got your back

Jowar Bhakri/ Jowar Roti

Monthly requirement per person: 6-7 kgs

Price of 1kg Jowar flour as on 24th March 2020: INR 79/kg

Cost of entire month: INR 553

Item 3:

For Non Vegetarians

Chicken, Eggs

Chicken salad/Egg salad:  Take 75gms of minced chicken or two boiled eggs sliced into pieces into a pan, Fry them in Olive oil or butter. Use black pepper, salt, chaat masala to season them. Add veggies to the dish and fry them as per your liking. Result:


500g of minced chicken on big basket as on 24th March 2020: INR 150

Monthly requirement: INR1350

Cost for a day: INR 45

 Calories: 358 approx

Price of a tray of 30pcs of eggs in big basket as on 24th March 2020: INR 159

Monthly requirement: INR636

Cost for a day: INR 22

Calories: 300 approx

*You can always mix and match between these two for more variety and cutting costs.

For vegetarians

Half a cobb of corn boiled or roasted or corn chaat.

Price of one on big basket as on 24th March 2020: INR 22

Monthly requirement: INR 660

Cost for a day: INR 22

Calories: 125 approx

Veg crispy: This is cauliflower fried in regular oil along with salt and other spices as per your liking. (You can try this with other vegetables of your liking like potatoes but I use cabbage and cauliflower). Once you’re done frying simply marinate the veggies in Ketchup or Schezwan sauce as per your liking

Cauliflower – 4 cups

Price of one Cauliflower on big basket as on 24th March 2020:

Monthly requirement: INR

Cost for a day: INR

Calories 209 calories approx

I generally have only two meals in a day so I mix and match my diet accordingly but if you eat three meals you can alternate between all the options and reduce the portions. Ultimately the daily intake would be the same.

Item 4: Chaas – Amul

Twice a day, INR 12

Cost for a day – INR 24

Monthly cost: INR 720

Calories: 56 calories approx

Item 5: Unibic cookies

Two packets a day, INR 10

Cost for a day – INR 20

Monthly cost – INR 600

Calories: 520 calories approx

Item 6: Snickers snackbar

2 a day, INR 10

Cost for a day – INR 20

Monthly cost – INR 600

Calories: 84 approx

Item 7: Tea

Girnar tea premix – INR 140

10 sachets

Cost for a day – INR 28

Monthly cost – INR 840

Calories: 74 calories


Cheaper alternatives to other essential supplies:

·  Can temporarily use Dettol antiseptic liquid instead of floor cleaners.

·  Cut down on sun-screen, make up and other such toiletries you won’t need since you’ll be staying in. Use a basic Vaseline moisturizer

Yes it’s time to say good bye to that fancy Body Shop merch.

Sorry Body Shop, this isn’t personal…

·  Use Ezee wash instead of Surf excel though it’s only supposed to be for winter wear. You won’t be stepping out frequently so it’ll not make much difference for the time being.

·  Get soaps over shower gels.

·  Colgate Dental floss is the cheapest in the market.

·  Preserve your LPG, if you can get ready to eat food that can be cooked in the microwave give that priority.

·  For toilet cleaners, it’s time to bring back the old urban legend. Use Coca-cola if you’re looking to cut down your costs further, it’s not 100% effective but it works.

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