This weekend, take a leaf out of the world’s favourite cooking show and unwind without spending through your noses.

When the long-awaited weekend finally rolls in, we’re sure you are ready to put up your feet and unwind at the end of a hard week. Expenses-wise, this is the riskiest time of the week – you’ll  want to indulge and it’s easy to justify the spends in the name of relaxation. Pencil in a tryst with the kitchen in your schedule this weekend! Besides saving a bunch of money on fancy takeaways and junk, you and your friends can savour some serious home-cooking chops.  

  1. Plan Ahead of Time

It’s always great to have something to look forward to on the weekend. The next time you have some free time on your hands at work, think of the dishes you’d like to see on your plate over the weekend. Whether it’s good old chicken curry or a white sauce spaghetti you want to try out, there are a ton of simple recipes online that you can look up, with detailed step-by-step breakdowns to make the process easier.  

2. Go Grocery Shopping!
Planning your meals in advance will also give you a clear idea of the fresh ingredients you need to pick up from the grocery store. It’s a good idea to do this on a Friday evening after work or early on Saturday, so you have everything you need in place to cook. Don’t forget to check what you already have in your pantry before you double stock perishable ingredients! When you know exactly what you’re looking for, grocery shopping can be a quick zip around the store, and ticking ingredients off your checklist.  

3. Enter the Void aka The Kitchen.
You might find this to be the trickiest part — snapping out of your bed-to-TV weekend routine to step into the kitchen. We suggest you put on your favourite playlist and get down to chopping vegetables! You could even invite friends over to divide (read: delegate) the labour or ask your maid for help. You’ll hardly notice how time passes as mouth-watering aromas of your dish fill your pad.  

4. Store Your Meals Properly
Once you’ve prepared your meal, make sure you store any leftovers – chopped vegetables as well the dish itself properly in airtight containers in the refrigerator. One way to be smart about this is to cook enough for two or three helpings, and you’ll find that you’ve sorted out two meals for yourself instead of one! You can also use raw leftover ingredients to whip up a quick breakfast or pack a lunch during the week.  

5. Savour Your Home-Cooked Dish
Lastly, don’t forget to take the time out to truly enjoy your home-cooked meal. There are few things more gratifying than savouring a freshly-prepared meal at home, so might as well make it special. Light some candles, or put on your favourite movie as you dig into the delicious meal! Of course, nothing beats having a couple of friends or even a date over to appreciate your handy effort.   It’s easy to spend your weekend on a budget when you know where your money is going. Whipping up a meal at home is one of the best ways to enjoy it without shelling out the big bucks.

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