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Top 5 money-saving ingredients

We’ve done our research and put together a master list of ingredients on the cheap in SA, plus what to do with your magical ingredients!

1. Potatoes

A bit obvious, maybe, but we love our spuds and they are an extremely cost-effective staple. And we’ll do you one better. Grab a bag from your grocery store and use them to make our fancy bangers and mash tonight. Then use your leftovers to make a porky mashed-potato pizza for tomorrow. Click here to make dinner for two nights for only R90!

Bangers and mash

2. Tinned beans

And not only do they cut costs, they save time as well. All you have to do is whip open the can, no prep needed. They can be used to stretch almost any budget dish, from soups and stews to leftover veggies and pastas. Do you want to know how to use them to make supper for two nights in a row for only R26? Click here to make our spicy bean chilli and next-day sloppy Joes.

Bean chilli

3. Tinned tuna

While you can’t beat the taste of fresh fish, tinned tuna comes in at a close second when it comes to price and convenience. And just one or two tins can go a long way to feeding a whole family when you have the right recipe. Our ridiculously easy and flavourful tuna and biscuit bake is that recipe. Click here to make it.

Tuna bake

4. Eggs

Although they are quite cheap as it is, buy eggs in bulk when they are on sale. Hard-boiled eggs can last up to 1 week in the fridge inside their shells. Beat them up and you can freeze them for up to 3 months! All you have to do is thaw them in the fridge, add 3 tbsp for each egg of the liquid called for in your recipe, stir, and use immediately. In the meantime, make a South African favourite, curried eggs, here.

Curried eggs

5. Maize meal

And no South African budget ingredient list would be complete without the local go-to, our beloved mielie pap. Not only extremely cheap, but versatile beyond belief, and we got chef Lucia Mthiyane, the face of White Star, to share some of her favourite recipes with us:


Savoury steamed bread
Steamed breadChorizo spinach with maize meal croutons


Pap balls with chickpea chakalaka


Butternut pie


Maize malva pudding

Malva pudding

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