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Easy Leek and Lemon Risotto with Green Peas and Spinach

Easy Leek and Lemon Risotto with Green Peas and Spinach

Hi Friends, Welcome back to another Kiah’s Kitchen recipe post! Today I am sharing this easy yet delicious Leek and Lemon Risotto with Green Peas and Spinach. This recipe came about for a few reasons, firstly, my lemon tree is doing exceptionally well right now, […]

Easy Sourdough Starter Pancakes

Easy Sourdough Starter Pancakes

Hi Friends, Welcome to another Kiah’s Kitchen recipe post! Today I am sharing these easy and delicious sourdough starter pancakes. As any regular readers would know, I am always on a mission to reduce my food waste (and plastic waste) and cook more from scratch. […]

September Grocery Budget Challenge: Week 3

September Grocery Budget Challenge: Week 3

Hello Friends!

Welcome back to my September Grocery Budget Challenge, I can’t believe we are in week three, where is the month going!

If you missed out on week one and two, you can find them here:

For a quick re-cap, I’ve set myself a challenge to drop our grocery budget to $120 per week for groceries AND household needs (i.e. washing detergent) without sacrificing food quality and sustainability. I am a big believer in cooking from scratch and consuming wholefoods that nourish you from the inside out. To achieve this goal I have been utilising meal planning, zero food waste principles, focusing on wholefoods and getting creative with what I’m cooking. For reference, Nathan and I live about an hour out of Melbourne CBD (Australia) and $120 is a challenge for us without being too unrealistic, previously we were spending over $200 per week on groceries for the two of us!

So without further ado, let’s get into it.

This week’s grocery shop

For the third week of September, my grocery shop came in at $134.46 which is only $14.46 over budget, much better than last weeks attempt! I also used some of the protein money for the month to buy the chicken, fish and eggs so that is not included in the $134 total. I take out $100 in cash at the beginning of the month and use it to purchase any animal protein we need throughout the month. We follow a predominantly vegetarian diet, we have only incorporated animal products since I became pregnant and I will only buy from local butchers and farms. It’s week three and this is the first time I have used any of it for the month of September.

I had to stock up on some more essentials this week, mainly olive oil and coconut oil. I also grabbed some things that were on special which I didn’t actually need such as the organic quinoa, organic canned tomatoes and extra coconut milk and almond milk. If I didn’t do this I probably would have come in under budget (for once!).

I have included a break down below of what I purchased and where!

Local Green Grocer – $55.56

  • Whole Butternut Pumpkin x 3.5kg
  • Brown Onion x 750g
  • Fresh Ginger x 125g
  • Ground Coriander
  • Pink Lady Apples x 2kg
  • Pak Choy x 1 bunch
  • Carrots x 345g
  • Sweet Potato x 1.57kg
  • Leeks x 1 bunch
  • Lebanese Cucumbers x 350g
  • Bananas x 1.8kg
  • Purple Garlic x 1 bulb
  • Avocado x 1kg
  • Zucchini x 245g
  • Broccoli x 865g
  • Green Capsicum x 500g
  • Red Capsicum x 265g
  • Fresh Coriander x 1 bunch
  • Chinese Cabbage x 660g
  • Baby Spinach x 500g
  • Tomatoes x 630g
  • Strawberries x 2 punnets
  • Blueberries x 1 punnet

Aldi – $37.96

  • Organic Milk
  • Organic Yoghurt
  • Vanilla Yoghurt
  • Apple and Mango Juice
  • Flavoured Tuna x 4
  • Sardines x 2 (for the dogs)
  • Organic Coconut Oil
  • Organic Quinoa
  • Choc Chip Cookies
  • WeetBix
  • Rye Bread

Woolworths – $34.40

  • Cobram Estate Olive Oil
  • Earth Choice Laundry Liquid
  • Unsweetened Almond Milk x 2
  • Canned Coconut Milk x 2
  • Organic Diced Tomatoes x 3
  • Organic Soba Noodles
  • Sharp Parmesan Cheese
  • Peppermint Tea

Coles – $6.54

  • Tuna in Springwater x 2
  • Lindt Dark Chocolate x 2

Protein (not included in $120 budget)

  • Chicken Breast from local butcher x 1
  • Fresh Salmon Fillet from local seafood supplier x 2
  • Dozen Free Range Eggs (from family run local farm)

Meal Plan for the Third Week of September

Week Commencing 15/09/19
Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday
Breakfast Organic sourdough toast with peanut butter or Vegemite and butter Kiah: Overnight oats with natural yoghurt, almond milk, chia seeds, fresh berries and chopped walnuts

Nathan: Weetbix with honey and milk

Kiah: Overnight oats with natural yoghurt, almond milk, chia seeds, fresh berries and chopped walnuts

Nathan: Weetbix with honey and milk

Kiah: Green smoothie made with frozen bananas, fresh spinach, hemp seeds, tropeaka protein powder, natural peanut butter, almond milk, water and ice

Nathan: Weetbix with honey and milk

Kiah: Overnight oats with natural yoghurt, almond milk, chia seeds, fresh berries and chopped walnuts

Nathan: Weetbix with honey and milk

Kiah: Overnight oats with natural yoghurt, almond milk, chia seeds, fresh berries and chopped walnuts

Nathan: Weetbix with honey and milk

Toast with eggs or oats with leftover fruit
Morning Tea Coffee with Karolina at Conscious Cravings Kiah: Homemade apple and cinnamon muffin, raw almonds and cup of tea

Nathan: Vanilla yoghurt and piece of fruit

Kiah: Homemade apple and cinnamon muffin, raw almonds and cup of tea

Nathan: Vanilla yoghurt and piece of fruit

Kiah: Homemade apple and cinnamon muffin, raw almonds and cup of tea

Nathan: Vanilla yoghurt and piece of fruit

Kiah: Homemade apple and cinnamon muffin, raw almonds and cup of tea

Nathan: Vanilla yoghurt and piece of fruit

Kiah: Homemade apple and cinnamon muffin, raw almonds and cup of tea

Nathan: Vanilla yoghurt and piece of fruit

Leftover fruit and cup of tea
Lunch Lunch with Jake and Karolina Quinoa, pumpkin and lentil salad with tahini dressing (tri-coloured quinoa, cooked brown lentils, roasted butternut pumpkin, spinach, cucumber, tomato and avocado) Quinoa, pumpkin and lentil salad with tahini dressing (tri-coloured quinoa, cooked brown lentils, roasted butternut pumpkin, spinach, cucumber, tomato and avocado) Toasted sandwich Kiah: Sweet potato soup from freezer
Nath: Vegetable lentil soup from freezer
Tuna salad (tuna, spinach, cucumber, tomato, sunflower seeds) Leftovers from the week
Afternoon Tea Raw nuts, fresh fruit and cup of tea Kiah: Natural Babybel cheese round and an apple

Nathan: Homemade banana muffin and piece of fruit

Kiah: Natural Babybel cheese round and an apple

Nathan: Homemade banana muffin and piece of fruit

Kiah: Natural Babybel cheese round and an apple

Nathan: Homemade banana muffin and piece of fruit

Kiah: Natural Babybel cheese round and an apple

Nathan: Homemade banana muffin and piece of fruit

Kiah: Natural Babybel cheese round and an apple

Nathan: Homemade banana muffin and piece of fruit

Leftover homemade muffin
Dinner Fresh Salmon fillet (baked) with stir fried Asian greens and rice Chicken and vegetable stir fry (using leftover veggies and one chicken breast) Sweet potato chickpea and spinach curry with soba noodles Sweet potato chickpea and spinach curry with soba noodles Lemon, pea and spinach risotto (add in any other veg on sale) Lemon, pea and spinach risotto (add in any other veg on sale) Date night/takeaway
Dessert Dark chocolate and cup of tea Dark chocolate and cup of tea Dark chocolate and cup of tea Dark chocolate and cup of tea Dark chocolate and cup of tea Dark chocolate and cup of tea Dark chocolate and cup of tea



Breakfast

Breakfast was the usual affair once again, I have overnight oats most days and as the weather gets warmer I’m starting to incorporate my favourite smoothies again. Nathan is quite happy with his WeetBix, honey and milk with a glass of juice. On the weekend we have toast just to change it up a bit (plus I love toast!). I needed to buy the milk, almond milk, plain yoghurt, WeetBix, berries and juice for breakfasts, the remaining ingredients I had on hand.

Lunch

Lunches this week were a bit all over the place! I had planned on meal prepping quinoa, pumpkin and brown lentil salad bowls – which I did and we ate them on Monday. However we then had leftover stir fry that we needed to eat so we both took that on Tuesday, we ended up having toasted sandwiches Wednesday, another quinoa, pumpkin and brown lentil salad bowl on Thursday and then soup from the freezer on Friday. I cooked the lentils from scratch (I always keep dried lentils in the pantry) and we had enough quinoa, lentils and pumpkin to make three salads each, so I put the other two servings in the freezer for next week. I only used half of the pumpkin for the salad bowls as it was HUGE so I roasted the other half of the pumpkin and scooped the flesh into a glass container and popped it into the freezer, I’ll use this to make my delicious mushroom and pumpkin risotto (recipe here) in a few weeks time.

Saturday lunch I had something that most people probably cringe at but my mum used to eat it when I was younger and it’s surprisingly good (plus I’m trying to make sure I’m getting my Omega-3s). I had Brunswick Sardines in Olive Oil on toast with natural tomato sauce and melted cheese, and served some sliced apple on the side and a cup of tea. It was amazing (don’t judge me haha).

Dinner

I tend to plan to cook 3-4 nights per week, the nights in between we have leftovers, this works well for us as it is easy, saves us time, reduces dishes and minimises food waste. One night we’ll usually have fish, we might have meat another night and the rest of our meals are vegetarian or vegan.

Sunday night we had fresh salmon fillets which I marinated in a fresh ginger, garlic, honey, soy and chilli dressing and baked in the oven for 20 minutes. We served these with stir fried veggies (pak choy, carrot, green capsicum, red capsicum and broccoli) using the remaining marinade and some quinoa. A delicious and easy Sunday night dinner!

Monday night we came home from work, walked the doggos and threw together a chicken and veggie stir fry, I used Chinese cabbage, onion, carrot, green capsicum, red capsicum and broccoli along with the one chicken breast. I made a stir fry sauce using fresh ginger and garlic, soy sauce, Chinese cooking wine and natural hoisin sauce. We served the stir fry on rice with fresh cashew nuts, chopped coriander and sesame seeds. There was enough leftover for us both to take a serving for lunch the following day. (Forgot to take photo – sorry!).

Tuesday night I made this delicious Sweet Potato, Chickpea and Spinach curry by Heidi Sze – it was so easy to throw together and full of flavour, I added a little extra sweet potato, and some fresh curry leaves I had in the fridge from a couple of weeks ago and used lemon instead of lime. We served this on organic soba noodles with fresh coriander and black sesame seeds, it was amazing! I definitely recommend this for an easy weeknight dinner.

Wednesday night we got home from work, walked the doggos and had leftover curry from the night before which was even better the next day. When storing soba noodles, you should always store them separate to the curry (or whatever you are serving them with) and to reheat you just immerse them in boiling water for a minute or two and strain. I heated the leftover curry on the stove and when I served it all up it doesn’t even feel like you are eating leftovers!

Thursday night I created this delicious Lemon, Leek and Pea risotto with spinach and Parmesan. When I cleaned out our pantry a couple of weeks back I found a packet of arborio rice that I needed to use so decided that we would be having risotto at some point in September. I have too many lemons on my lemon tree so needed to use some of those and when I went grocery shopping I saw the leeks on special and thought they would make a great addition. The peas I had in the freezer and the spinach is something I always have on hand as we buy 500g (which is a lot) every week to add greens to meals easily. I’ll definitely be putting this one up on the blog!

Friday night we came home from work, walked the doggos and had leftover risotto for dinner, super easy and super delicious! If you are going to reheat risotto, I recommend doing so on the stove and adding a little stock while string to heat through.

Saturday afternoon we went out for coffee at a new restaurant in town, I tried their organic dairy free hot chocolate with almond milk which was amazing.

We then watched the final between Collingwood and GWS (AFL if you are not familiar) unfortunately Collingwood lost, the last quarter was intense though, they fought hard! Once the game finished, it was getting late and it was pretty wet and rainy outside. I really wanted Indian but didn’t want to drive to the next town to get it, so I grabbed the broccoli and zucchini out of the fridge that was leftover from last week and turned it into my own Indian curry – I sent Nathan to the supermarket to grab some naan bread and viola, Indian for dinner but much healthier!

Snacks

Since falling pregnant I have had to snack more than I used to, previously I would have an almond latte as morning tea and a piece of fruit in the afternoon. These days, I take raw almonds and cashews, homemade healthy muffins (I usually make a batch of muffins every Sunday using what fruit we have leftover), fresh fruit and a Babybel natural cheese round. Nathan is somewhat similar although he takes vanilla yoghurt rather than nuts and cheese.

This week I made these Healthy Apple Muffins using leftover apples from the previous week, I had all other ingredients already – they turned out great!

 

I also purchased the apples and bananas as our snack fruit for the week.

At the end of the week I had some leftover sweet potatoes and zucchini so decided to try and make life easier for future me by turning these into a meal for the freezer, I already had lentils, chickpeas and stock on hand so I threw together this sweet potato, lentil and chickpea dahl with zucchini. Dahl freezes really well and it made enough for about five serves so I’ll use that for dinner in the coming weeks.

If you want the recipe for this, I used a combination of this one and this one and kind of made my own adjustments/additions (I can never just follow a recipe haha).

In Summary

Overall week three was a success, only $14 over budget and we had an abundance of good nourishing food that lasted us the week. I tried out some new recipes and Nathan enjoyed eating them! I really recommend giving Heidi’s recipe a go, so yummy and easy!

If you too are looking to cut some money from your grocery budget I hope this has given you some motivation, or at the very least, I hope it has given you some meal ideas and inspired you to do some more cooking from home with fresh ingredients! If you’d like to stay up to date on the remainder of this challenge, feel free to subscribe via email so you receive a notification every time a new post is published.

I’d love to hear from you in the comment section below or over on my Instagram page, maybe you’re trying to cut costs or just looking at ways you can be more sustainable both financially and environmentally, I love chatting about both of these topics.

Until next time, take care!

X Kiah

September Grocery Budget Challenge: Week 2

September Grocery Budget Challenge: Week 2

Hello hello hello! Welcome to another Kiah’s Kitchen blog post! This is the second instalment of my September Grocery Budget Challenge! If you haven’t seen week one, you can check it out here. For those that need a quick recap – this challenge is all […]

Easy Black Eyed Pea Curry

Easy Black Eyed Pea Curry

Hi Friends! Welcome back to another Kiah’s Kitchen recipe post! Today I am sharing my delicious and easy Black Eyed Pea Curry recipe! Cooking with black eyed peas is actually new to me, I have never tried them before! I was in my local green […]

September Grocery Budget Challenge: Week 1

September Grocery Budget Challenge: Week 1

Hi Friends,

Welcome back to another Kiah’s Kitchen blog post! If you read my last post, you know that I have been on a mission to reduce my spending on groceries without sacrificing quality.

I am a strong believer in cooking from scratch and the value in preparing fresh healthy nutritious meals. I love to cook (obviously) and even with my goal of saving money for our new arrival, I refuse to sacrifice quality and sustainability when planning my weekly meals. If you want to read more on this and some of my top tips for cutting your grocery budget, see my last post here.

Confession time: I actually love checking out other peoples groceries, I find it so interesting to see what other people eat, how much they spend and how (or if) they plan their meals! Because of my nosiness I love reading other people’s Instagram and Blog posts on this topic. If you’re a curious cat like me, this post is for you!

via GIPHY

So, what is my grocery budget?

Previously I would spend $200+ to feed Nathan and I per week, for this grocery challenge, I have cut it down to a goal of $120 per week which covers groceries AND household products with an additional $100 per month (if needed) for protein from local farms. For anyone reading this, keep in mind, I live in Australia, groceries are considerably more expensive here than they are in America which is why this may seem a little high to some of you. Everyone needs to find the amount that is right for them based on their location, family members, preferences and priorities.

For this challenge, I will be sharing my meal plan for each week, what ingredients I purchased, how much I spent and where I shopped. As a general rule I prepare all of our meals at home besides 1 dinner (or lunch) per week where we eat out with friends, go on a date night or have takeaway (usually a Saturday night) which is not included in our grocery budget. Some ingredients I already have in stock in my pantry or fridge so I do not need to buy these every week and I will try to indicate that where I remember. I’ll also include any recipes I have used for the meals.

This week’s grocery shop

For the first week of September, my grocery shop came in at $137.83 so only slightly over budget, this is ok though as it all tends to balance out by the end of the month. I have included below a breakdown of what I purchased and where!

Local Green Grocer – $64.66

  • White potatoes x 1.3kg
  • Brown onions x 995g
  • Sweet Potato x 440g
  • Fuji Apples x 2kg
  • Dried Black Eyed Beans x 1kg
  • Whole Butternut Pumpkin x 1.3kg
  • Sweet Paprika
  • Garam Masala
  • Carrots x 185g
  • Lebanese Cucumbers x 375g
  • Zucchini x 280g
  • Tomatos x 660g
  • Hass Avocado x 1kg
  • Kiwi Fruit Gold pk of 6
  • Red Onion x 185g
  • Purple Garlic
  • Broccoli x 840g
  • Ginger x 140g
  • Red Chilli x 25g
  • Bananas x 1.6kg
  • Fresh Dill
  • Strawberries x 750g
  • Blueberries
  • Baby Spinach leaves x 500g

Aldi – $40.30

  • Organic natural yoghurt
  • Vanilla yoghurt
  • Organic milk
  • Orange and mango juice
  • Canned diced tomatoes
  • Canned chickpeas x 2
  • Flavoured tuna x 4
  • Organic quinoa
  • Natural cashews
  • Natural almonds
  • Rolled oats
  • Light rye bread
  • Organic tomato paste
  • Choc chip cookies

Woolworths – $26.79

  • Unsweetened almond milk
  • Canned coconut milk x 2
  • Tuna in spring water x 2
  • Canned Wild Alaskan Salmon
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Babybel cheese rounds
  • Lindt 70% Dark Chocolate x 2 blocks
  • Sardines in spring water x 2 (for dogs)

Local Butcher – $6.08

  • 2 free range chicken breasts, skin on

 

Meal plan for the first week of September

Week Commencing Sunday 01/09/19
Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday
Breakfast Organic sourdough toast with peanut butter or vegemite and butter Kiah: Overnight oats with natural yoghurt, almond milk, chia seeds, fresh berries and chopped walnuts

Nathan: Weetbix with honey and milk

Kiah: Overnight oats with natural yoghurt, almond milk, chia seeds, fresh berries and chopped walnuts

Nathan: Weetbix with honey and milk

Kiah: Overnight oats with natural yoghurt, almond milk, chia seeds, fresh berries and chopped walnuts

Nathan: Weetbix with honey and milk

Kiah: Overnight oats with natural yoghurt, almond milk, chia seeds, fresh berries and chopped walnuts

Nathan: Weetbix with honey and milk

Kiah: Overnight oats with natural yoghurt, almond milk, chia seeds, fresh berries and chopped walnuts

Nathan: Weetbix with honey and milk

Sourdough toast with eggs or oats with leftover fruit
Morning Tea Coffee from local cafe Kiah: Homemade banana muffin, raw almonds and cup of tea

Nathan: Vanilla yoghurt and piece of fruit

Kiah: Homemade banana muffin, raw almonds and cup of tea

Nathan: Vanilla yoghurt and piece of fruit

Kiah: Homemade banana muffin, raw almonds and cup of tea

Nathan: Vanilla yoghurt and piece of fruit

Kiah: Homemade banana muffin, raw almonds and cup of tea

Nathan: Vanilla yoghurt and piece of fruit

Kiah: Homemade banana muffin, raw almonds and cup of tea

Nathan: Vanilla yoghurt and piece of fruit

Raw almonds and leftover fruit with a cup of tea
Lunch Leftovers from the week Vegetarian split pea soup with toast Salmon salad bowl with quinoa, cucumber, spinach, tomato and a honey mustard dressing Vegetarian split pea soup with toast Vegetarian split pea soup with toast Toasted sandwich (cheese, tomato and avocado) Green smoothie with leftover spinach, frozen banana and Tropeaka protein powder
Afternoon Tea Cup of tea and fruit/cookies Kiah: Natural Babybel cheese round and an apple

Nathan: Homemade banana muffin and piece of fruit

Kiah: Natural Babybel cheese round and an apple

Nathan: Homemade banana muffin and piece of fruit

Kiah: Natural Babybel cheese round and an apple

Nathan: Homemade banana muffin and piece of fruit

Kiah: Natural Babybel cheese round and an apple

Nathan: Homemade banana muffin and piece of fruit

Kiah: Natural Babybel cheese round and an apple

Nathan: Homemade banana muffin and piece of fruit

Homemade banana muffin
Dinner BBQ at Nathan’s parents house for Father’s Day (bring salad) Mustard, parmesan and panko crumbed chicken breast with roast potato and steamed greens Pumpkin and chickpea or sweet potato and chickpea curry with spinach and rice Pumpkin and chickpea or sweet potato and chickpea curry with spinach and rice Salmon and potato patties with side salad (spinach, tomato, cucumber, avocado, sunflower seeds) Salmon and potato patties with side salad (spinach, tomato, cucumber, avocado, sunflower seeds) Date night
(dinner out or takeaway)
Dessert Dark chocolate and cup of tea Dark chocolate and cup of tea Dark chocolate and cup of tea Dark chocolate and cup of tea Dark chocolate and cup of tea Dark chocolate and cup of tea Dark chocolate and cup of tea



Breakfast

For breakfast Nathan and I tend to stick to the same thing most days, we know what we like and it’s easy, this week was no exception. I had overnight oats Monday – Friday, this is what I purchased the oats, organic yoghurt, almond milk and berries for, I also added chia seeds, sunflower seeds and chopped walnuts which I had on hand. Nathan had his usual WeetBix and honey which I already had in the pantry, so all I needed for him was the organic milk and fruit juice. On Saturday and Sunday we tend to have toast!

Lunch

I usually prep the first three days of the week, in the cooler months this is often soup as it’s so easy to make in advance and freeze. In the warmer weather I’ll do more salads and nourish bowls. On the last two days of the week we tend to make a salad on Thursday (with whatever is in the fridge) and Friday is toasted sandwich day, weekend lunches involve leftovers from the week.

This week I prepped this Vegetarian Split Pea Soup as I had some leftover celery and carrots from last week and a bag of dried split peas in the pantry, I didn’t need to buy any ingredients for this as I make my own veggie stock using scraps and had everything else on hand.

We actually ended up having salad for lunch on Monday as we had leftover salad from our Father’s Day BBQ, I added tuna instead of salmon and made a homemade dressing using tahini, olive oil, water, maple syrup, dijon mustard, salt and pepper all of which I had in stock. I had originally purchased the sweet potatoes and cucumber for the salad bowl but because we ate the leftover salad I now needed to find something else for them, it also mean’t I didn’t use the quinoa! We had the soup on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday and then a toastie on Friday. For the toasted sandwich we already had cheese so didn’t need to buy any, I just grabbed some tomatoes, avocado and some tuna for Nathan. Because our Friday dinner plans changed, we ate leftovers from Thursday night for lunch on Saturday and I made a huge salad using fresh spinach leaves, tomato, cucumber, fresh dill and tahini dressing, it was delish!

Dinner

I tend to plan to cook 3-4 nights per week, the nights in between we have leftovers, this works well for us as it is easy, saves us time, reduces dishes and minimises food waste. One night we’ll usually have fish, we might have meat another night and the rest of our meals are vegetarian or vegan.

Sunday night we were at Nathan’s parents house for a fathers day BBQ, I did make a really nice roast pumpkin, green bean, rocket, spinach, haloumi and pine nut salad but the ingredients for this were not purchased out of our grocery budget.

Monday night we walked the dogs and then I made this easy Parmesan Mustard Crumbed Chicken, I had most of the ingredients on hand for this I just had to buy the Parmesan cheese and chicken breasts. I served this with baby spinach, steamed broccoli, green peas and roast potato.

Tuesday night I had prenatal yoga so Nathan cooked, he made this delicious Pumpkin and Chickpea Coconut Curry which we just served on rice with some plain yoghurt and added a heap of fresh spinach for some greens.

Wednesday night we got home from work, walked the doggos and then had leftovers which made things easy and gave us both a break from cooking (plus curry is even better the next day). I store leftovers in glass containers and I reheat them on the stove rather than using the microwave.

Thursday night I threw together some potato and salmon patties using the remaining white potatoes, fresh dill and canned wild salmon, served with baby spinach, tomato, cucumber, avocado and steamed broccoli. I have published this recipe on the blog as it was a winner in our house, so if you’d like to check it out, click here.

Friday night was supposed to be another leftover night however Nathan’s mum invited us over for family dinner to catch up with Nathan’s grandpa who we haven’t seen in a little while so we saved the leftovers for lunch on Saturday.

Saturday night we had a date night but instead of eating out I decided to cook at home and use up some leftover produce such as the sweet potato, zucchini and fresh spinach! We then headed to the movies to see IT Chapter 2 (I had my eyes closed for 90% of the movie, can’t handle the jumpiness especially while pregnant!).

Snacks

Since falling pregnant I have had to snack more than I used to, previously I would have an almond latte as morning tea and a piece of fruit in the afternoon. These days, I take raw almonds and cashews, homemade healthy banana muffins (I usually make a batch of muffins every Sunday using what fruit we have leftover), fresh fruit and a Babybel natural cheese round. Nathan is somewhat similar although he takes vanilla yoghurt rather than nuts and cheese.

This week I made these healthy banana muffins using leftover bananas from the previous week, I had all other ingredients already.

I also purchased the apples, kiwi fruits and bananas as our snack fruit for the week.

In Summary

Overall things went pretty well for the first week of the September Grocery Budget Challenge, I actually ended up with too much food as a few of our plans changed so I’ll have to incorporate that into next weeks meals somehow. I also did go a tiny bit over budget by $17 but overall I’m pretty happy with my efforts, I did purchase some things that weren’t on my list like the black eyed peas and choc chip cookies, and I grabbed two blocks of the Lindt chocolate because it was half price and I couldn’t resist!

So that is it for the first week of the grocery budget challenge! If you too are looking to cut some money from your grocery budget I hope this has given you some motivation, or at the very least, I hope it has given you some meal ideas and inspired you to do some more cooking from home with fresh ingredients! If you’d like to stay up to date on the remainder of this challenge, feel free to subscribe via email so you receive a notification every time a new post is published.

I’d love to hear from you in the comment section below or over on my Instagram page, maybe you’re trying to cut costs or just looking at ways you can be more sustainable both financially and environmentally, I love chatting about both of these topics.

Until next time friends,

Xx Kiah

 

Salmon, Dill and Potato Patties

Salmon, Dill and Potato Patties

Hi Friends, Welcome back to another Kiah’s Kitchen recipe post! Today I am sharing my easy and delicious Salmon, Dill and Potato Patties (or fish cakes..whatever you want to call them). Since falling pregnant I have done my best to incorporate fish 2-3 times per […]

Cutting our grocery budget without sacrificing quality!

Cutting our grocery budget without sacrificing quality!

Hi Friends, Welcome back to another Kiah’s Kitchen post! Today I am sharing something a little different, specifically around budgeting and food. I grew up in a single parent household and money was considered scarce and hard to come by, this attitude and fear towards […]

My top 5 favourite soup recipes this Fall/Winter Season!

My top 5 favourite soup recipes this Fall/Winter Season!

Hi Friends!

Welcome back to another Kiah’s Kitchen blog post! Today I’m sharing my top five favourite soup recipes for this Fall/Winter season! In Australia we are slowly beginning to see the signs of Spring on the horizon, however we’ve not escaped the cold days just yet so soup will still be on the menu in our house for at least another month or so. On the other side of the world in the Northern Hemisphere the season is transitioning into fall, the leaves will be beginning to change colour and it’s almost time to start incorporating nourishing soups and stews into your diet to support your body through this seasonal transition. Basically what I am saying is, it’s the perfect time to have some soup wherever in the world you are!



One of my favourite things about the cooler months is the soups that I can make! Soup is so easy to throw together with almost anything you have in the fridge, it’s frugal, it’s perfect for prepping ahead for some easy lunches or dinners during the week and it’s just good for the soul. Over these past four months I have been making soup once a week and have tried so many different recipes, some my own and some from other bloggers and recipe creators. Whilst I enjoyed all of them, there were certainly some stand out favourites that I absolutely loved and will continue to make time and again.

My top five favourite soups from this winter:

 

  1. Curried Pumpkin Lentil and Coconut Soup by Kiah’s Kitchen

    This delicious soup recipe is one of mine and I absolutely love it, it’s like taking pumpkin soup, giving it a bit of a kick and adding in red lentils for additional protein, fibre and folate! Win Win Win! My mum is an amazing cook (it’s probably where I got my passion from) and I always remember her pumpkin soup because she would add fresh ginger and it provided so much flavour, ever since then, I can’t make pumpkin soup without adding ginger and this soup was no exception. The ginger and curry make this soup super warming which is great on those cold winter days and the Butternut and coconut milk give a lovely creaminess. This soup is thick and filling and goes perfectly with some crusty bread on the side. This soup also freezes well making it the perfect meal prep option for winter! Get the recipe here.

  2. Spiced Moroccan Vegetable Soup with Chickpeas, Cilantro and Lemon by Joan Nathan

    I feel like the title of this soup does not do it justice, not only is it packed with herbs, veggies and chickpeas, it also has lentils and harissa paste which packs a flavourful punch. Growing up we did not go out to eat all that often, I had a single mother and we conserved money, however as a teenager mum and I did go to a cafe in Croydon called Kofi Beans occasionally and they had this delicious harissa soup with sourdough that I would get every time! I was actually looking for a harissa soup recipe to mimic the Kofi Beans one when I stumbled across this recipe and I’m so glad I did. I actually followed this recipe to the T, which is rare for me, usually I use recipes as a base and tend to improvise a little but this was perfect as written. I also tried freezing this recipe which worked fine and took it to work for lunches. Get the recipe here.

  3. Creamy Roasted Cauliflower Soup by Cookie + Kate


    This is probably one of my favourite soups ever. I love cauliflower soup but I don’t really like to use a lot of cream or dairy. This flavours in this soup are absolutely amazing and it is so so creamy without the need for any cream or milk. Roasting the cauliflower really enriches the flavour and provides depth to the soup. As usual I didn’t follow this recipe exactly, I used two heads of cauliflower instead of one and extra garlic cloves as well. I roasted the whole garlic cloves along with the cauliflower rather than sautéing them and I added in a small potato when cooking the soup on the stove. Because of this I did have to bump up the liquid so I just added some water in addition to the stock called for in the recipe. I served this soup with fresh parsley, cracked black pepper and Grana Padano cheese with fresh rye sourdough on the side *drool*. I made this soup for my mums birthday lunch and everyone loved it! Get the recipe here.

  4. Homemade Roasted Tomato and Basil Soup by Ambitious Kitchen


    When Nathan and I got back from Europe after a month of travelling, I was craving home cooked food so badly! Nathan and I live off fresh homemade meals and to go from that to a month of eating out and snacking while traveling is definitely a shock to the system! When we got back I needed something easy (jet-lagged) but nourishing and this soup was the first thing I cooked. The flavours are amazing and it is so simple to make, baking it all in the oven gives it a deliciously rich flavour. I cooked this again during the first trimester of my pregnancy when I was struggling with food aversions and nausea and it went down so well with some fresh sourdough on the side. I have not tried freezing this one, I imagine it would be better fresh given the consistency but I could be wrong! This is probably more of an Autumn soup if you follow seasonal eating, tomatoes aren’t really in season over winter, however the last harvest in late summer/early Autumn is perfect timing for making this. Get the recipe here.

  5. Spicy Sweet Potato Ginger and Coconut Soup by Jessica Beautician


    This spicy sweet potato soup is a staple at my house, it is so easy to throw together and the ginger and turmeric provide wonderful anti-inflammatory properties. Sweet potato is high in fibre and provides so many beneficial vitamins and minerals, especially vitamins B and C! So not only is this soup delicious to eat, it is also great for your immune system and fighting off those winter sniffles. I do a bit of a different variation on this soup which I’m sure I will share on my blog one day, but if you follow this recipe as written you will not be disappointed. I have tried freezing this soup and it defrosts and re-heats well making it another wonderful meal prep option. Get the recipe here.

I encourage you to give some of these soups a go, they are all amazingly flavourful and packed full of nutritional ingredients to keep you going during those cold days! Apologies for the photos, none of these have been taken with my camera, they’re all just off my Instagram but thought I would share them anyway so you could get an idea of how the soups look, to see the proper photos head to the link for each soup. I promise you will not be disappointed!

If you have any soup recipes that you love, please do let me know in the comments below or over on Instagram!

Until next time, stay warm, nourished and happy!

Kiah xo

The Humble Baked Apple: A perfect fall/winter dessert!

The Humble Baked Apple: A perfect fall/winter dessert!

Hi Friends! Welcome to another recipe post! It was my mums birthday this weekend and to celebrate I had her and my sister over for lunch. I love to cook for and feed others, it’s my way of showing love and generosity. I think I […]


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My top 5 favourite soup recipes this Fall/Winter Season!

My top 5 favourite soup recipes this Fall/Winter Season!

Hi Friends!

Welcome back to another Kiah’s Kitchen blog post! Today I’m sharing my top five favourite soup recipes for this Fall/Winter season! In Australia we are slowly beginning to see the signs of Spring on the horizon, however we’ve not escaped the cold days just yet so soup will still be on the menu in our house for at least another month or so. On the other side of the world in the Northern Hemisphere the season is transitioning into fall, the leaves will be beginning to change colour and it’s almost time to start incorporating nourishing soups and stews into your diet to support your body through this seasonal transition. Basically what I am saying is, it’s the perfect time to have some soup wherever in the world you are!



One of my favourite things about the cooler months is the soups that I can make! Soup is so easy to throw together with almost anything you have in the fridge, it’s frugal, it’s perfect for prepping ahead for some easy lunches or dinners during the week and it’s just good for the soul. Over these past four months I have been making soup once a week and have tried so many different recipes, some my own and some from other bloggers and recipe creators. Whilst I enjoyed all of them, there were certainly some stand out favourites that I absolutely loved and will continue to make time and again.

My top five favourite soups from this winter:

 

  1. Curried Pumpkin Lentil and Coconut Soup by Kiah’s Kitchen

    This delicious soup recipe is one of mine and I absolutely love it, it’s like taking pumpkin soup, giving it a bit of a kick and adding in red lentils for additional protein, fibre and folate! Win Win Win! My mum is an amazing cook (it’s probably where I got my passion from) and I always remember her pumpkin soup because she would add fresh ginger and it provided so much flavour, ever since then, I can’t make pumpkin soup without adding ginger and this soup was no exception. The ginger and curry make this soup super warming which is great on those cold winter days and the Butternut and coconut milk give a lovely creaminess. This soup is thick and filling and goes perfectly with some crusty bread on the side. This soup also freezes well making it the perfect meal prep option for winter! Get the recipe here.

  2. Spiced Moroccan Vegetable Soup with Chickpeas, Cilantro and Lemon by Joan Nathan

    I feel like the title of this soup does not do it justice, not only is it packed with herbs, veggies and chickpeas, it also has lentils and harissa paste which packs a flavourful punch. Growing up we did not go out to eat all that often, I had a single mother and we conserved money, however as a teenager mum and I did go to a cafe in Croydon called Kofi Beans occasionally and they had this delicious harissa soup with sourdough that I would get every time! I was actually looking for a harissa soup recipe to mimic the Kofi Beans one when I stumbled across this recipe and I’m so glad I did. I actually followed this recipe to the T, which is rare for me, usually I use recipes as a base and tend to improvise a little but this was perfect as written. I also tried freezing this recipe which worked fine and took it to work for lunches. Get the recipe here.

  3. Creamy Roasted Cauliflower Soup by Cookie + Kate


    This is probably one of my favourite soups ever. I love cauliflower soup but I don’t really like to use a lot of cream or dairy. This flavours in this soup are absolutely amazing and it is so so creamy without the need for any cream or milk. Roasting the cauliflower really enriches the flavour and provides depth to the soup. As usual I didn’t follow this recipe exactly, I used two heads of cauliflower instead of one and extra garlic cloves as well. I roasted the whole garlic cloves along with the cauliflower rather than sautéing them and I added in a small potato when cooking the soup on the stove. Because of this I did have to bump up the liquid so I just added some water in addition to the stock called for in the recipe. I served this soup with fresh parsley, cracked black pepper and Grana Padano cheese with fresh rye sourdough on the side *drool*. I made this soup for my mums birthday lunch and everyone loved it! Get the recipe here.

  4. Homemade Roasted Tomato and Basil Soup by Ambitious Kitchen


    When Nathan and I got back from Europe after a month of travelling, I was craving home cooked food so badly! Nathan and I live off fresh homemade meals and to go from that to a month of eating out and snacking while traveling is definitely a shock to the system! When we got back I needed something easy (jet-lagged) but nourishing and this soup was the first thing I cooked. The flavours are amazing and it is so simple to make, baking it all in the oven gives it a deliciously rich flavour. I cooked this again during the first trimester of my pregnancy when I was struggling with food aversions and nausea and it went down so well with some fresh sourdough on the side. I have not tried freezing this one, I imagine it would be better fresh given the consistency but I could be wrong! This is probably more of an Autumn soup if you follow seasonal eating, tomatoes aren’t really in season over winter, however the last harvest in late summer/early Autumn is perfect timing for making this. Get the recipe here.

  5. Spicy Sweet Potato Ginger and Coconut Soup by Jessica Beautician


    This spicy sweet potato soup is a staple at my house, it is so easy to throw together and the ginger and turmeric provide wonderful anti-inflammatory properties. Sweet potato is high in fibre and provides so many beneficial vitamins and minerals, especially vitamins B and C! So not only is this soup delicious to eat, it is also great for your immune system and fighting off those winter sniffles. I do a bit of a different variation on this soup which I’m sure I will share on my blog one day, but if you follow this recipe as written you will not be disappointed. I have tried freezing this soup and it defrosts and re-heats well making it another wonderful meal prep option. Get the recipe here.

I encourage you to give some of these soups a go, they are all amazingly flavourful and packed full of nutritional ingredients to keep you going during those cold days! Apologies for the photos, none of these have been taken with my camera, they’re all just off my Instagram but thought I would share them anyway so you could get an idea of how the soups look, to see the proper photos head to the link for each soup. I promise you will not be disappointed!

If you have any soup recipes that you love, please do let me know in the comments below or over on Instagram!

Until next time, stay warm, nourished and happy!

Kiah xo