I’m a mum on benefits and feed my family for £7.50 a week – anyone can, you just can’t worry about looking poor | The Sun

A MUM who says she spends £7.50 on her weekly food shop says people should ditch the "stigma" towards tinned fruit and veg to cope with the current supply crisis.

Alison Preest, 49, cooks meals for her family for as little as 75p thanks to hacks and tips she shares on her YouTube channel.

There have been nationwide shortages of fruit and vegetables such as tomatoes and cucumbers with supermarkets blaming weather in Europe and Africa.

But mum-of-one Alison from Lydney, Gloucestershire, said her family aren't missing out at all – because she buys cheap and nutritious tinned vegetables.

She said: "There is definitely a stigma surrounding buying tinned vegetables as it is seen as poor.

"As someone who is living on benefits myself, I never understood the reason behind the ignorance of not purchasing tinned foods.

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"It is all just the same just way cheaper.

"It is a mentality thing, people do not want to be seen eating tinned or frozen veg.

"People are made to believe that you are not getting the goods and the nutrients in tinned veg."

Her favourite bargains are 22p tinned carrots from Lidl and 37p canned potatoes from Asda.

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Her best dish is vegetable and chicken casserole which has three portions of veg, for 95p per serving.

Alison's tinned veg hacks include using the water they come in as stock – for flavour and to save on utilities.

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Alison has started to cook her tinned potatoes in the air fryer as she saves even more on utilities.

Tinned tomatoes work very well mixing with other foods to create a complete meal like a bolognaise.

She said: "Using the natural syrup from tinned fruit makes for a great topping on any pudding."

Thanks to her tips, her weekly shopping costs just £7.50 – while the average family spends £114, reportedly.

She said: "Tinned vegetables are low cost and high nutrition.

"Tinned and frozen vegetables most of the time are in stock.

"I am not against fresh vegetables but tinned vegetables keep way longer and are far easier to store whilst taking years to go off.

"Anything can be cheap if you take an extra five minutes to look for it including vegetables even with the high demand for them at the moment.

"Once you start looking for deals and finding great things on the cheap, it becomes far easier with time."

Alison receives benefits, but still cooks a variety of meals using tinned vegetables and frozen goods, she said.

"Chicken casserole using chicken thighs, tin of carrots, tin of tomatoes, chicken stock cube and seasoning is £1 per serving.

"It's £4 for the whole thing and serves a whole family."

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Her top five tinned vegetables to buy:

  • Tinned tomatoes (28p) (Lidl)
  • Tinned carrots (22p) (Lidl)
  • Tinned sliced mushrooms (50p) (Asda)
  • Tinned potatoes (37p) (Asda)
  • Tinned sweetcorn (45p) (Asda)

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