Wolverhampton TikTok star who cooks family meals for £5 shares money hacks and 'dirty rice' recipe

TikTok star Mitch Lane shows ITV Central's Rosie Dowsing how to cook 'Dirty Rice' using low-cost ingredients and minimal energy or electrical appliances.

A TikTok chef from Wolverhampton has reached a million followers sharing cooking videos with recipes that feed a family of four people for under £5.

Mitch Lane, who uses the social media handle @mealsbymitch, started making videos in lockdown, but says recently the soaring cost of living has meant even more people wanting to save money on substantial, home-cooked meals.

As a tools salesman by day, Mitch uses evenings and weekends to pick up ingredients for under £5 from the supermarket and turn them into recipes to share on social media.

The Dad-of-three starts each video by showing the receipt, to prove each meal costs less than £5.

Mitch also shared his five money and energy saving tips with us:

  • One pan cooking: Meals that can be cooked in one pan save energy, as you only use one hob on your cooker. If you cook with the lid on, even better - this saves time and money.

  • Buy crossover ingredients: In a week, choose meals where the ingredients for one dish can also be used for another.

  • Shopping list: Also go to the supermarket knowing what you want to buy - that way you won't be tempted to buy things you don't need.

  • Only boil enough water for what you need: Don't fill the kettle up to the top every time you boil it

  • Don't be afraid to microwave veg: You're going to save time and money by using your microwave.

Chorizo Dirty Rice (serves 4 people) - By Mitch

Mitch's 'dirty rice'

"What an absolute banger of a one pan meal this truly is! It’s got so much going on in it and even I can’t believe that this meal is under a fiver.

"It is very simple to do and you’re going to absolutely love it.

"I use a pre-packet paella seasoning packet for 50p for this dish to keep the costs down, but if you’ve already got your own seasoning in your cupboards (paprika, cumin, cayenne, onion powder, garlic powder etc.) then of course you can just use those seasonings instead."

Ingredients and costs (based on Sainsbury’s 25th August 2022)

The ingredients for the recipe cost exactly £5 - and the meal serves four
  • 1 Red Onion - £0.10

  • 1 Bell Pepper - £0.48

  • 6 Cloves of Garlic - £0.20 (based on entire bulb)

  • 30g Paella Seasoning - £0.50

  • 300g Rice - £0.45 (based on 1kg bag)

  • 630ml Chicken Stock - £0.55 (based on full pack of stock cubes)

  • 100g Frozen Peas - £0.52 (based on 850g frozen bag)

  • 1 Lemon - £0.30

  • 180g Chorizo - £1.34 (based on pre-sliced chorizo packet)

  • Salt & Pepper

  • 1 Tbl Olive Oil


  • Firstly start off by washing the rice thoroughly ensuring the water runs completely clear. Do not skip this step otherwise you’ll end up with sticky and starchy rice as opposed to loose and fluffy. It will end up looking more like a risotto otherwise! Let the rice soak in cold water while you prep the fresh ingredients.

  • Slice the chorizo into small pieces, dice the onion and pepper and finally chop the garlic.

  • Get a pan up to a medium heat and add the olive oil and chorizo and cook for 1 minute while continuously stirring.

  • Add the onion and pepper and continue to cook for 2 minutes while stirring.

  • Add the garlic and cook for a further 1 minute.

  • Add the washed rice along with the paella seasoning and mix will for 2 minutes, allow theuncooked rice to take on the flavours of the pan.

  • Add the chicken stock, put the lid on, turn the heat down as low as possible and let thisbubble away for 10 minutes. Try to avoid taking the lid off the pan, you want the heat to be contained.

  • After 10 minutes add the frozen peas, give it a mix to make sure nothing is sticking to thebottom, cover the pan in foil to ensure no steam is escaping and put the lid back on too for good measure! Turn the heat completely off and leave everything to steam for 15 minutes.

  • It may be very tempting to take a peak under the foil, but do not take the foil off! I repeatDO NOT take the foil off before 15 minutes. This process is going to help the rice cookbeautifully.

  • After 15 minutes take the foil off and run a fork through the rice, it should be nice a fluffyand not sticky at all.

  • Add a squeeze of lemon juice along with some salt & pepper to your taste.

  • Garnish with some slices of lemon and serve.

Where can I get help in the Midlands as the cost of living soars?