Budget-friendly barbecue recipes - Chargrilled vegetable kebabs on a plate

We’re thrilled that so many of you are embracing the wonderful world of barbecue and outdoor cooking – so we’ve pulled together a collection of brilliant budget-friendly barbecue recipes that will not only inspire your cooking on the coals, but can help you save some money, too.

Large premium cuts of meat can come at a cost, but by choosing cheaper cuts, and being clever with your accompaniments, you can make your meat stretch further and get great value for money. Serving a rack of succulent pork ribs alongside a range of epic veggie dishes – such as baked red onions, chargrilled veg kebabs or a new potato salad – means you’ll be sharing the love and keeping the costs down.


We love these sunny kebabs! The rainbow of green courgette, yellow pepper and red cherry tomatoes will definitely brighten up your barbecue spread. These meat-free skewers are perfect for getting the little ones involved – try mixing it up with their favourite veggies. The bread makes this all go that little bit further too, making it a good choice for your budget-friendly barbecue. Watch The Happy Pear cook these up here.

A great way to keep your barbecue costs down is to treat gorgeous veg like you would a piece of meat. Mushrooms are a brilliant alternative, offering a similar texture and heartiness. Give these a go!

A fantastic dish of beautifully charred veg and soft flatbreads – we love this one. By using naturally budget-friendly ingredients, such as chickpeas, and store-cupboard staples like honey, harissa, ground cumin and paprika, this will be a clever choice to help you spend less. Perfect for your budget-friendly barbecue

Need a super-satisfying veggie option? These sweet potatoes are taken to the next level with fiery red chilli and melty Montgomery Jack cheese (and optional smoky bacon). You can swap in regular potatoes and your favourite cheese to make this more budget-friendly.


Buddy’s pork ribs make a fantastic centrepiece to any barbecue spread and also happen to be great value. Served alongside any number of dishes below, they will keep your guests fed and very happy. Also, the ribs are ideal to cook ahead in the oven when you have it on for other things, then finish off on the barbecue later.

By using a cheaper cut and only 8 ingredients, this chicken leg recipe is naturally budget-friendly. The spice paste is made by whizzing up lemongrass, coriander, garlic, ginger and lime, making this a fresh and zingy addition to your barbecue bonanza!

No longer will you spend ages flipping individual sausages – these are skewered together in a grid for easy grilling all at once. Served with cheesy mash in a tortilla, this is a clever recipe that makes 12 sausages serve 8 – but with loads of other dishes this could definitely go further. It’s a fun option for barbecuing in the cooler months, celebrating Bonfire Night or New Year’s Eve. Don’t forget the red cabbage!

Chicken wings are up there as one of the most budget-friendly cuts of meat – and so popular at barbecues. Marinated in ginger, honey and soy sauce, these tender beauties have a deep sweet and salty flavour, then barbecued until sticky and smoky – they’re a must! 

We’re going to share a secret with you; you can cook meatloaf on the barbecue! This savvy recipe uses budget-friendly pork and beef mince, some store-cupboard staples and ingredients you’ll probably have in already, meaning you can whip it up quickly and leave it on the barbecue to do its thing.

You say barbecue – we say burgers! It’s so easy to make your own, and that way you can choose exactly what goes in them, and flavour them any way you want!


Herby, mustardy and properly comforting, a potato salad is a barbecue essential. If you make these in the spring and summer, new potatoes will be bang in season and therefore more affordable. The key here is to dress the potatoes in the vinaigrette while they are still warm so they soak up all the lovely flavours.  

Itamar Srulovich and Sarit Packer from Honey & Co share their brilliant recipe for charring and dressing red onions. Cooking onions in their skins on the barbecue is a fantastic way to get a lovely charred flavour on the outside, while steaming them on the inside – making them tender and sweet.  

Try charring ribbons of courgettes on the barbecue for this simple salad – you’ll be surprised how many ribbons you’ll get out of 4 courgettes! Go hard on the chilli, if you dare – it’s a winning combo.

This tasty chopped vegetable couscous is an easy side dish to add to your budget-friendly barbecue. Simply rehydrate your couscous with ground cumin and smoked paprika, chop up your veg and you’re ready to go! 

Cook these spuds on the cool side of the barbecue while you focus on the other elements of your spread – they’ll take care of themselves and will be tender and soft by the time you serve up. Use a few anchovies (or rashers of bacon) to create some big flavour bombs in between the slices.


Barbecuing fruit brings out their natural juiciness, making them sweet, smoky and delicious. And buying a whole pineapple is a great way to make a little go a long way!

Why not try skewering up some different fruits, then briefly cook them on the barbecue? The whole family will love this one – especially if you mix and match your favourites! 

Looking for some more outdoor cooking inspiration? Watch Jamie cook on the barbecue, smoke fish in a bucket and forage twigs for cooking chicken with Gennaro.