Dinner tonight will be a quick and easy fix. The chicken was cooked two days ago in the slow cooker, a chicken joint that gave us enough meat for three meals. That means that all that I have to cook is the rice and veggies, and warm the meat, beans and sauce through.
Arguably, I could make a better, healthier Spanish chicken from scratch, using herbs and spices to taste. Unfortunately, I don’t have the spices needed for this in my pantry, and I can’t afford the buy them with our budget as it currently is. This ready made sauce jar cost just 79p, and is quick and easy to use, needing no prep and no cooking, no blending or spices, no experimenting to get a nice flavour. When paired up with the already cooked and chopped chicken, and a bag of frozen vegetables, it makes a quick and cheap dinner that should be a hit with the family.
I have to admit to being a huge fan of such easy, cheap meals!
Easy Spanish Chicken and Rice
- 250g pre-cooked chicken (left over from an earlier meal).
- 1 can red kidney beans (Asda Smart Price, or equivalent shop own brand).
- 1 bag of frozen vegetables (such as Lidl floret mix).
- 300g of white rice (Aldi, or Asda Smart Price brand or similar).
- 1 jar of Aldi Chicken Delight Spanish Chicken sauce.
Put your bag of vegetables in to cook the steamer or a pan of boiling water. Add your rice to a pan with hot water according to the instructions on the packet-commonly with twice the amount of water as rice. Cook vegetables for about 30 minutes in the steamer, or 20 minutes in the water, or until done to your liking. Cook rice until nice and soft, 12-15 minutes.
Put the chicken and beans in a pan with the jar of sauce to heat while the vegetables and rice cook. Allow to heat together on a medium heat until piping hot-at least five minutes. Serve the Spanish chicken over rice, with the vegetables.
Per serving, this meal costs just 96p, and has 537 calories approximately. Adding corn adds another 58 calories per person per 80g serving, but is delicious (and is how we did it!). Day three of our budget challenge is over, we’re almost at the half way mark!
If you wanted to adapt this for baby-led weaning, you would likely want to take the baby’s portion of chicken and beans out before the jar of sauce is added. As an alternative, a little tomato puree could be added so that baby has a sauce and their meal looks the same. As most baby-led weaning families will know, this is essential for stopping baby demanding your dinner instead!