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10 tips on how to BBQ on a budget

10 tips on how to BBQ on a budget
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It’s officially BBQ season as the UK is mysteriously experiencing some pretty hot weather currently! Here are some top tips on how to have a cheap BBQ experience!

#1 Embrace that pound shop

Let’s face it, no one really loves washing up, yet the cost of endless disposable utensils, plates and napkins can be frustrating.

You can get around this however by just heading to the local pound shop to pick up your bits and bobs!

#2 If you already have it- use it

Do not think that just because you are having a BBQ, you have got to buy heaps of fresh food!

Have a look through your freezer and see if there are any of the basics, such as sausages and chicken. Even if you don’t have pre-formed burgers you can usually make them through using some  mince meat.

There are plenty of recipes over on BBC Good Food.

Likewise, don’t fork out more cash on BBQ items, if you have a BBQ already- use it! This also goes for kitchen utensils, all you really need to turn meat on a BBQ is a fork so just use one of them, not one of those specially designed intimidating looking contraptions…

#3 Get creative

No one will really be able to tell (unless they are a meat connoisseur) that you’ve brought some pretty cheap cuts if you slather them in marinade and flavour. Whip up some tasty sauces with the spices already in your kitchen and cover everything in cheese!

#4 Impress those veggies

Meat free alternatives are incredibly affordable! You can whip up some cheap bean burgers for half the price of meat ones!

Likewise, Quorn and meat free substitutes are super affordable, check out supermarket own brand vegetarian ranges to save on those £££

#5 Use one pack at a time

Don’t rip open all your packets of food and whack them onto a BBQ. You’re much more likely to waste food if you do this!

Open one packet at a time and maybe ask around the group enquiring how many people want a burger, sausage, chicken, etc

#6 Load up on those carbs!

Everybody loves a jacket potato and the best thing about them is that they’re super cheap!

You can buy loads in bulk and cook them up to bulk out your BBQ dishes. Grab some beans and cheese from ALDI and you’ve got a great side dish that is heaps cheaper than meat and will fill loads of people up!

#7 Encourage people to bring their own desserts

Desserts, with all their fresh cream and fresh fruit, can be rather expensive.

Get around this issue by encouraging people to bring a dessert dish along with them to the BBQ, this way you’ll be able to concentrate on the main courses!

#8 Veggies and Corn on the Cob

Vegetables are super cheap and convenient, not to mention being super quick and easy to cook.

A great idea is to grill up a load of corn on the cobs and slather them in salt and butter for lots of happy campers!

#9 Don’t invite too many people

If you are trying to stick to a tight budget, make sure that you do not invite too many people! In the bluntest of terms, more people means more mouths to feed.

If you are expecting a larger crowd then definitely encourage people to bring dishes!

Essentially, know you limits. You do not want to be short on food because of the sheer number of people there, we all know students love free food!

Stick to a small guest list to save on money and to also reduce the stress of the day as you won’t be running around trying to talk to everyone.

#10 Garlic Bread

GARLIC BREAD. Stock up on lots of supermarket own brand (frozen) garlic bread, wrap it in foil and place it in the coals of the BBQ for perfectly toasted and perfectly affordable sides.

Elizabeth Whittingham Elizabeth is a third year history student studying at The University of Manchester.