Delicious and simple mushroom risotto | budget-proof challenge


I am currently typing this from my kitchen while still cooking this risotto and let me tell you: the smell alone is making me so hungry. It smells AMAZING! I don’t think I say that enough when I cook something. I’m making a delicious yet simple mushroom risotto and everything is so so great…

You’re probably thinking “Okay, when is she going to complain about something” well let me tell you: I’m not going to. If it weren’t for this risotto I would have, since I had so many plans for today but didn’t execute any of them, but this mushroom risotto is making up for all of that. And would you believe that in line with my budget friendly challenge a huge plate of this creamy and comforting risotto will cost you only €1,10?

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Veggie burgers: sweet chilli and zucchini | budget-proof challenge

zucchini burger

Veggie burgers are a thing. You can buy them in the supermarket, they are served in restaurants and you’re not a real food blogger if you haven’t cooked or at least tasted them… So here I go.

I decided to go for zucchini as it’s an easy vegetable. Some sort of cream was needed so I used cottage cheese: such good memories pop up with that taste. And then, because I figured it needed something else, I decided to add sweet chilli sauce. And it was quite tasty! And that for only €0,60 per person…

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Quick and healthy breakfast: oat/apple-cinnamon pancake with smoothie


I haven’t posted any breakfast recipes lately and I’m sorry about that: breakfast is usually my favourite! I decided to make it up to you by uploading a double recipe today. One for a really simple oat flour pancake (it didn’t take me longer than preparing a regular bowl of oatmeal!) and a delicious yet healthy veg-fruity smoothie.

We all have those days in which we simply have no clue what to eat for breakfast. For me it’s easy, I always toss some ingredients in a bowl of oatmeal and I’m good to go for a couple of hours, but if you’re more a sandwich kinda person I can imagine it gets boring quite soon. That’s why you should mix it up every once in a while: with a simple pancake for example!

This is still part of the budget proof month of course, so it is not only a quick, easy and healthy breakfast but an affordable one too.

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Roasted pumpkin and pepper with turkey and freekeh | budget-proof challenge

DSCN6277There was this pumpkin sitting in my vegetable storage for already a month, so I decided it was about time to use it. I’ve done this before: buy pumpkin, forget about pumpkin, remember I have pumpkin and then be forced to find something to cook with pumpkin. Oh, well.

I thought it would be nice to roast vegetables. Roasted pumpkin is quite sweet and rich which can be rather overpowering, so I needed to balance it out – hence the bell pepper. Freekeh has that nutty flavour that goes great with roasted pumpkin and I decided to add the turkey for a nice hearty but healthy touch.

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Brussels sprouts salad with apple and chicken | budget-proof challenge


I always try to find new ways to enjoy Brussels sprouts because, to be honest, I really don’t like them. (I mean come on, who didn’t hate them as a kid? And maybe still does, years later?) So far I haven’t been entirely successful but I’m not one to give up easily so I tried another recipe.

It was… interesting. I followed a recipe which told me to use raw Brussels sprouts, chicken and capers combined with a vegan Caesar Salad dressing but I of course gave my own spin to it. Read about this and our experiences with it in this post!

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Toasted wraps with shawarma and avocado | budget-proof challenge


This weekend we spent our time in our lovely apartment in Breda. As the boyfriend is always home quite late during the weekdays I’m usually the one who cooks, so this Sunday we decided to switch roles. He decided to prepare toasted wraps with shawarma, avocado and lettuce with some garlic sauce, and it was really good! And that for only €2,90 a person…

Usually we just pop the wraps in the microwave for 30 seconds but we were told that you have to pan fry them so they get nice and crisp. Definitely a good tip! Also, we usually eat wraps with chicken but swapping this for shawarma was a good idea. The avocado adds this creaminess that nearly replaces the sauce you’d normally add, and it’s sooo tasty!

By the way: I’ve been quite addicted to Instagram lately! Love looking at the pictures everyone posts and of course I enjoy seeing your comments to the pictures I post myself. Feel free to follow me: stayaliveandcooking.

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Simple dinner casserole with leek, bell pepper, minced meat and potato | budget-proof challenge


Fridays are for leftovers. I always buy a lot of vegetables, which sometimes means half my fridge is filled with pieces of cucumber/carrot/eggplant/zucchini and half full bags of lettuce or spinach… Luckily I know many ways to use these!

You can for example make a great omelet by simply adding some eggs and spices, or include all those vegetables in a really delicious pasta sauce. Today however, I will show you how to make a simple dinner casserole. And of course I’m still busy with the budget proof challenge, so this dish costs only €1,95 a person!

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Puff pastry breadsticks | budget-proof challenge


I love a good soup. There are so many options, I like to prepare a different soup every week! However, sometimes it’s not enough as a dinner so you’ll have to add something like a piece of bread or… breadsticks!

I’ve got this great and simple recipe that I prepared in a few minutes with some puff pastry, cheese and sesame seeds. We ate these together with the vegetable soup recipe I posted yesterday. How easy is that?!

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Vegetable soup with mini meatball recipe | budget-proof challenge


Vegetable soup is easy to make, very filling, versatile and tasty. You can use your leftover vegetables if you like, or follow my recipe! If you want to make it even better you add mini meatballs. I’ve made these many times, and will include my recipe for those here as well.

When we were younger my brother and I, selfless brats that we were, always wanted to go to grandmas house because of the soup she often made. Even though she always claimed it was nothing special we absolutely loved it. It was extremely simple with only a few ingredients, yet I was never really able to recreate the flavour… Until I bought some fresh Celery leaves. The smell immediately told me that this was the “secret” ingredient my previous soups lacked!

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Eggs poached in tomato stew | budget-proof challenge


Okay, so today I tried this recipe that is originally called “shakshuka”, but because I sort of adapted the recipe I decided to call it a tomato stew. Basically what you do is you make this great soup like stew with tomatoes and bell pepper, add a bunch of herbs and then you crack some eggs and cook them in the sauce. Trust me: it’s a recipe for success!

I get my inspiration from so many things. I check Instagram and Bloglovin’ multiple times a day: I keep my eyes open when I’m outside and I try to mesmerize restaurants menus for god knows I might want to recreate one of the dishes one day. When I decided what to cook this week, I had this image in my head of a dish with tomatoes and eggs in the pan… I literally googled “tomato stew eggs” and was able to find what I was looking for.

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