Oct 11

Live on a chicken for a week

A chicken is £2.78 in Tesco – and you can’t get much cheaper than that. That’s a whole, frozen 1.4kg chicken.

Fresh ones are a bit more expensive (about £4 for 1.7kg or £7 for free range, same weight). We are going to show you how one person can live on a chicken for a week. And yes, you will have to buy a few other bits and bobs, and no, we won’t be having it for breakfast. I’m really just talking about the dinners. So, 7 dinners for 1 person. (A 1.6kg frozen chicken from Tesco is £3.18, so go for that if you are a big eater or want to feed the cat as well).

Sunday: Roast Chicken


Roast Chicken

  • 1 Medium Frozen Chicken
  • 1/2 a Lemon (optional)
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Olive Oil
  • Potatoes
  • Boiled/Steamed Veg of choice (Eg. Cabbage, Carrots, Green Beans, Broccoli, Kale, Sprouts, Peas)


  1. Place the chicken in a roasting pan
  2. Put a halved lemon inside (optional), season all over with salt and pepper and slosh some olive oil in the pan and over the chicken.
  3. Roast for 1½ hours, turning the chicken (so it gets some time resting on each breast and ends up doing the last ½ hour breast up).
  4. Serve 1 breast or 1 leg with potatoes and boiled/steamed veg.

Tip: If you are organised, roast the potatoes round the bird for the last 45 minutes-1 hr.

Remember to refrigerate the remaining chicken

Monday: Chicken and Bean Salad

5 Bean Salad

                                                                                                                                                      Image for illustrative purposes only

Tinned beans are an unbelievable bargain. Cheapest I found at Tesco were:

400g Red Kidney beans 30p
400g borlotti beans 35p
400g black eye beans 35p
390g green lentils 35p
400g cannellini beans 35p


  • 1 Tin Beans of Choice
  • 1/2 a Leg/Breast Shredded Chicken
  • Balsamic Vinegar
  • Olive Oil
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Dried Herbs (optional)
  • Capers and/or Gherkins (optional)
  • Salad (optional)


  1. Drain the beans and add shredded chicken
  2. Douse with balsamic vinegar and olive oil (or ready-made vinaigrette)
  3. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Add in a few dried herbs and/or chopped gherkins and/or capers (if liked)
  5. Serve on a bit of if you have it.

Tip: Beans are filling and 400g beans are extra filling so you might not need so much of the chicken meat – see how you go.

Tuesday: Coronation chicken

Coronation chicken

                                                                                                                                                      Image for illustrative purposes only

I like Coronation chicken because I like fruit with meat, but if you don’t, just do a chicken salad. Salad – and veg in general – is, as I have said before, cheap.


  • Cubed Chicken Meat
  • Mayonnaise
  • Saltanas or Rasins
  • Curry Powder
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Salad (suggestions: lettuce, celery, tomato, sundried tomatoes, peppers, but go for what you like)


  1. Mix cubed chicken meat with mayonnaise, sultanas or raisins, curry powder and salt & pepper.
  2. Serve with salad .

Wednesday: Baked Bean Chicken Hot Pot

Baked beans

420g Tesco Value baked beans in tomato sauce (24p)

I love adding things to baked beans i.e. peanuts + grated cheese; curry powder + sultanas; chopped sausages/bacon + diced pepper.


  • 1 Tin of Baked Beans
  • Diced Chicken Meat
  • Veg of choice (suggestions: chopped peeled cucumber, diced onion)
  • Chilli Flakes OR Worcestershire Sauce
  • Fresh Parsley (optional)
  • Dried Mixed Herbs (optional)


  1. In a frying pan, sweat veg in a bit of olive oil or butter
  2. Add diced chicken meat and baked beans plus chilli flakes OR Worcestershire sauce
  3. Add mixed herbs (if using) and heat until piping hot
  4. Serve immediately, garnishing with fresh parsley (if using)

Thursday: Chicken Risotto

Chicken for a week

                                                                                                                                                               For illustrative purposes only

Ingredients (serves one)

  • 1 Small Onion
  • 25g Butter
  • Peppers or Mushrooms (optional)
  • 100g Pudding Rice (cheaper than risotto rice – 69p/500g compared to £2.29)
  • Tsp Dried Mixed Herbs
  • 250ml Chicken Stock
  • Diced Chicken Meat
  • Cheese (Parmesan Flakes or Cheddar)


  1. Dice the onion and sweat in the butter for 5 minutes, with some diced pepper or a few mushrooms if liked.
  2. Add the rice
  3. Stir to coat the rice with the butter
  4. Stir in the mixed herbs and cook for 5 minutes.
  5. Gradually add the hot chicken stock, stirring (or shove in all in one go if you’re in a rush) and leave to simmer till the rice is almost done (10-15 minutes).
  6. Add some diced chicken meat and heat through, season with salt and pepper.
  7. Serve with parmesan flakes (expensive) or grated cheddar (cheap) on top and salad.

Friday: Chicken pasta

Chicken for a week

                                                                                                                                                               For illustrative purposes only


  • Diced Chicken
  • 100g Pasta
  • 1tbsp Crème Fraiche
  • 1tbsp Shop-bought pesto or tomato-based pasta sauce
  • Salt & Pepper


  1. Cook pasta according to pack instructions in boiling salted water.
  2. Add diced chicken meat and crème fraiche + pesto or tomato-based pasta sauce
  3. Season and serve with salad or broccoli.

Saturday: Chicken soup

Chicken soup


  • 1 Chicken Carcass
  • 1 Large Onion, chopped
  • 2-3 Carrots, peeled + chopped
  • 1 Clove Garlic, chopped
  • 2 Stalks Celery, de-stringed + chopped
  • Small Handful of Fresh Herbs, chopped
  • Salt and Pepper
  • 100ml Single Cream or Milk


  1. Break up the carcass a bit and put into a large saucepan, with all other ingredients except cream/milk.
  2. Cover with water.
  3. Cover and simmer slowly 2 hours.
  4. Turn off the heat and lift out the carcass with forks – it will be hot!
  5. Leave to cool a bit and shred off any remaining meat with fingers. P
  6. ut meat back in the pan with cream or milk.
  7. Taste for seasoning and serve with bread.

You did it! Bet you’re sick of chicken now – give yourself a break from it for a week and you’ll be fine. Make sure you have fish or veggie food for lunches, so you aren’t too chicken-crazy by the end of the 7 days.

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5 thoughts on Live on a chicken for a week

  1. Thanks, for the ideas. I usually get stuck on what can I do with this. Also the recipes can be adapted for fish for example

  2. It depends how cold the fridge is and how many times you open it (to see what is there is to eat) and how long you stand letting the cold air fall out! Also best to wrap it in baking parchment so that it doesn’t dry out or get contaminated by anything else

  3. It depends how cold the fridge is and how many times you open it (to see what is there is to eat) and how long you stand letting the cold air fall out! Also best to wrap it in baking parchment so that it doesn’t dry out or get contaminated by anything else

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