Getting a takeaway at the end of a long day is a wonderful feeling. Not having to cook or do lots of washing up after is great. What isn’t great, however, is the dent it leaves on your bank balance. Depending on whether you’re enjoying a takeaway on your own, or you have lots of guests over to enjoy one with you – the cost of a takeaway can certainly add up. Take a look at these six quick takeaway style dishes from Mr Lender which you can make at home on a budget for just a fraction of the cost.
When a certain chicken chain introduced their now renowned little pots of irresistibly good popcorn chicken to the world, it was certainly something special. However, over time the pots seem to have become smaller and no longer contain as much chicken-goodness and they once did. Instead of spending money on a minuscule pot of popcorn chicken, have a go at making your own version at home.
Using a few everyday spices and a homemade breadcrumb mix, you can have your own popcorn chicken in under an hour. Simply mix the breadcrumb ingredients together and coat the chicken, before deep frying them in batches. Coat the fried chicken in the spice mix, leave to cool, then enjoy.
A classic fast food which can be made at home in less time than it takes to have one delivered. Pizza is one takeaway which is simple to make and doesn’t require much cooking skill at all. Depending on how adventurous you’re feeling, you can add a whole variety of toppings to your pizza. For the base, you can either buy a ready made one, make your own, or save time and money on your homemade pizza by using pitta bread instead.
Pitta bread pizzas are also much healthier than a homemade pizza dough, and they take just 45 minutes to put together. All you have to do is spread your tomato purée sauce onto the pitta bread bases, sprinkle over some mixed herbs, then lay on your toppings and cheese before placing under the grill until cooked.
This homemade takeaway is perfect for the summer – cook on the barbecue for extra smoky flavour, or cook on the hob for a quick fast food fix. Using just beef, onion powder, salt and pepper, you can make your own delicious cheeseburgers in just 25 minutes. Simply mix the ingredients together in a bowl before splitting the mixture into individual portions. Heat your barbecue or frying pan, then add the raw burgers. If you’re cooking your burgers on the hob, they should take around 2-3 minutes on each side to cook. Add your cheese, place the burgers in a bun, then leave them to cool before tucking in.
The staple side to any take away dish – French fries. No matter where you buy your fries from, it’s almost guaranteed that you will have an opinion about what makes them perfect. To save yourself a bit of money (and for a healthier version) have a go at making your own fries at home.
Using just potatoes, oil and salt, you can make the perfect take away French fries from the comfort of your kitchen. While they may take a little longer than other take away dishes, these French fries will certainly be worth the wait. By simply chopping, soaking, drying and frying your potatoes, you can save yourself plenty of money on this fast food essential.
Chicken chow mein
If fried fast food isn’t really your thing, maybe have a go at making your own takeaway noodles instead. While most chow mein dishes you might have come across may not be particularly healthy, you can revamp this recipe to include as many vegetables as you like. Best of all – it only takes 40 minutes to make.
All you have to do is cook the noodles through before marinating and frying off the chicken. Once the chicken is cooked, add the noodles and vegetables to the pan, and season well before serving.
Another delicious takeaway dish you may want to have a go at making yourself is a chicken korma. Making a curry from scratch isn’t necessarily the most complicated dish to make, but there are plenty of ingredients involved and you will likely have a number of pots and pans on the go at once.
If you want to make your curry from scratch, there are lots of recipes online all offering a slightly different variation to the next. For the quick fix takeaway option, you can buy jars of ready-made sauces in most large supermarkets. If you opt for the quick jar version, you simply need to cook the chicken through before adding the jar of sauce. Once you’ve cooked your rice through too, simply serve together on a plate and enjoy.