6 Affordable Noche Buena Menus Under P2,000

Published: December 24, 2019 | Updated: January 10, 2020 | Posted by: Venus Zoleta | Personal Finance


Noche Buena in the Philippines | Moneymax

How far can your PHP 1,000+ go when you buy food for Noche Buena?

An analysis by the ABS-CBN Investigative and Research Group (1) found that a typical food basket with 11 assorted Noche Buena products worth PHP 1,280 in 2014 can now buy only two expensive items: ham and keso de bola. That’s the impact of inflation during the last five years.

Now that makes us wonder: Can Filipino families still celebrate Christmas over food on a meager budget?

Our research led us to conclude that, yes, a budget of less than PHP 1,000 to PHP 2,000 is enough to prepare a sumptuous and filling Noche Buena in the Philippines for a family of four to six.

Not convinced? The key to cut down on your Noche Buena shopping costs is to make your menu special yet simple, consisting of a main dish or two, a side dish, and a dessert.

Here are six affordable Noche Buena menus, plus tips on how you can further save money when shopping for your Christmas Eve dinner.

Note: Prices are based on the Department of Trade and Industry’s suggested retail prices of Noche Buena products (2) and the Philippine Statistics Authority’s price bulletin (3), both updated as of 2019. Actual prices may differ, depending on the brand, product variant, and whether you shop in a dry and wet market or a supermarket.

Noche Buena Menus Under P1,000

Menu 1 (Total Cost: PHP 625.15 to PHP 763.55)

Noche Buena Menu in the Philippines - Under P1,000

  • Lechon manok
  • Spaghetti aglio e olio
  • Cheese sticks
  • Fruit salad

Noche Buena Food List and Cost Breakdown:

  • 1 whole chicken – PHP 150 to PHP 190
  • Pasta (900g/1kg) – PHP 57 to PHP 92.50
  • Olive oil (250ml) – PHP 144.75 to PHP 154.50
  • Cheese (200g) – PHP 47.50 to PHP 66.40
  • Lumpia wrappers (40 pcs) – PHP 50
  • Cooking oil (375ml) – PHP 20 to PHP 37.50
  • Fruit cocktail (836g) – PHP 72.90 to PHP 76.15
  • All-purpose cream (250ml) – PHP 55 to PHP 59
  • Condensed milk (168ml) – PHP 28 to PHP 37.50

Good for six people, this menu includes all Noche Buena staples—but with a twist. Instead of the usual Pinoy-style spaghetti, go for the simpler aglio e olio, which is both a cheaper and healthier alternative. To add flavor and texture to the pasta dish, you can add shredded breast from the grilled chicken.

It’s also a practical idea to substitute cheese sticks for keso de bola, which costs thrice as much as a regular cheese.

Menu 2 (Total Cost: PHP 685.20 to PHP 926.71)

Noche Buena Menu in the Philippines - Under P1,000Noche Buena Menu in the Philippines - Under P1,000

  • Fried chicken
  • Pinoy-style spaghetti
  • Lumpiang shanghai
  • Leche flan

Noche Buena Food List and Cost Breakdown:

  • 1 whole chicken – PHP 150 to PHP 190
  • Cooking oil (750ml) – PHP 40 to PHP 75
  • Pasta (900g/1kg) – PHP 57 to PHP 92.50
  • Spaghetti sauce (1kg) – PHP 60.70 to PHP 84.20
  • Ground pork (1kg) – PHP 150
  • Lumpia wrappers (60 pcs) – PHP 75
  • Carrots (2 pcs) – PHP 12.50 to PHP 34.76
  • Eggs (10 pcs) – PHP 63 to PHP 80
  • Condensed milk (1 can) – PHP 43.50 to PHP 72
  • Evaporated milk (1 can) – PHP 21 to PHP 57
  • Sugar (250g) – PHP 12.50 to PHP 16.25

Make the kids happy and fill their tummies this Christmas! For less than PHP 1,000, this Noche Buena menu is made up of dishes that are popular with children, including spaghetti and fried chicken. You can even spend less by using corned beef as an ingredient for spaghetti instead of ground meat.

Noche Buena Menus Under P2,000

Menu 1 (Total Cost: PHP 535.75 to PHP 1,181.69)

Noche Buena Menu in the Philippines - Under P2,000

  • Grilled fish
  • Vegetable afritada
  • Lumpiang gulay
  • Rice
  • Fresh fruits

Noche Buena Food List and Cost Breakdown:

  • Bangus (1kg) – PHP 120 to PHP 260
  • Cooking oil (375ml) – PHP 20 to PHP 37.50
  • Onion (2 pcs) – PHP 20 to PHP 32
  • Potatoes (4 pcs) – PHP 24 to PHP 62
  • Carrots (2 pcs) – PHP 18.75 to PHP 52.14
  • Green peas (100g) – PHP 11.50
  • Tomato sauce (500g) – PHP 34.50 to PHP 45.10
  • Sitaw (1 small bundle) – PHP 10 to PHP 32.50
  • Cabbage (1 head) – PHP 35 to PHP 133
  • Lumpia wrappers (20 pcs) – PHP 25
  • Regular/Well-milled rice (1kg) – PHP 27 to PHP 60.95
  • Carabao mangoes (1.5kg) – PHP 150 to PHP 360
  • Papaya (1kg) – PHP 40 to PHP 70

For a change, eat healthy and tasty foods for your Noche Buena feast, like fish, veggies, and fruits. This menu is also ideal for families with senior citizens, health-conscious people, and those with a medical condition on a restricted diet.

Menu 2 (Total Cost: PHP 816.50 to PHP 1,240.45)

Noche Buena Menu in the Philippines - Under P2,000

  • Grilled pork belly
  • Grilled chicken
  • Rice
  • Buttered corn and carrots
  • Mango float

Noche Buena Food List and Cost Breakdown:

  • Pork belly (1kg) – PHP 180 to PHP 360
  • 1 whole chicken – PHP 150 to PHP 190
  • Regular/Well-milled rice (1kg) – PHP 27 to PHP 60.95
  • Whole kernel corn (850g) – PHP 59
  • Carrots (500g) – PHP 25 to PHP 69.50
  • Carabao mangoes (2 pcs) – PHP 50 to PHP 120
  • All-purpose cream (two 250ml packs) – PHP 110 to PHP 118
  • Condensed milk (two 300ml cans) – PHP 61.50 to PHP 109
  • Graham crackers (two 200g packs) – PHP 75
  • Crushed grahams (two 200g packs) – PHP 79

Feel like having a grill party at home during Christmas Eve? Yes, you can with a budget of less than PHP 1,500! Feast on grilled meats to your heart’s content without worrying about wrecking your holiday budget.

Menu 3 (Total Cost: PHP 1,031.90 to PHP 1,581.59)

Noche Buena Menu in the Philippines - Under P2,000

Instagram photo by @villacuisine210

  • Rellenong bangus
  • Chicken afritada
  • Lechon kawali
  • Rice
  • Fruit cocktail float

Noche Buena Food List and Cost Breakdown:

  • Bangus (1kg) – PHP 120 to PHP 260
  • Lemon (1 pc) – PHP 25 to PHP 30
  • Onion (2 pcs) – PHP 20 to PHP 32
  • Carrot (3 pcs) – PHP 18.75 to PHP 52.14
  • Green peas (225g) – PHP 19.75
  • Raisins (100g) – PHP 41.50 to PHP 46.50
  • All-purpose flour (200g) – PHP 21.50
  • 1 whole chicken – PHP 150 to PHP 190
  • Potatoes (4 pcs) – PHP 24 to PHP 62
  • Tomato sauce (500g) – PHP 34.50 to 45.10
  • Cooking oil (750ml) – PHP 40 to PHP 75
  • Pork belly (1kg) – PHP 180 to PHP 360
  • Regular/Well-milled rice (1kg) – PHP 27 to PHP 60.95
  • Fruit cocktail (836g) – PHP 72.90 to PHP 76.15
  • All-purpose cream (250ml) – PHP 55 to PHP 59
  • Condensed milk (168ml) – PHP 28 to PHP 37.50
  • Graham crackers (two 200g packs) – PHP 75
  • Crushed grahams (two 200g packs) – PHP 79

This affordable Noche Buena menu is for families who prefer to share different meat-based dishes (fish, chicken, and pork) on the dining table on Christmas Eve. Even so, your budget won’t exceed PHP 2,000, especially if you buy cheaper meat products from a wet market instead of a supermarket.

Menu 4 (Total Cost: PHP 834.80 to PHP 1,590.18)

Noche Buena Menu in the Philippines - Under P2,000

  • Ham
  • Pandesal with cheese/sandwich spread
  • Classic macaroni salad
  • Fresh fruits

Noche Buena Food List and Cost Breakdown:

  • Fiesta ham/Pear-shaped ham/Jamon de bola (1kg) – PHP 299 to PHP 569
  • Pandesal (30 pcs) – PHP 60 to PHP 90
  • Cheese (440g) – PHP 129.50 to PHP 205
  • Sandwich spread (220g) – PHP 52.50 to PHP 99.80
  • Salad macaroni (200g) – PHP 32.50 to PHP 36.65
  • Mayonnaise (470ml) – PHP 95.05 to PHP 196.35
  • Carrot (1 pc) – PHP 6.25 to PHP 17.38
  • Onion (1 pc) – PHP 10 to PHP 16
  • Carabao mangoes (1.5kg) – PHP 150 to PHP 360

Don’t have the time or patience to cook for Noche Buena this Christmas? This simple menu is perfect for you! No need to sweat it out in the kitchen—just assemble the ingredients and in minutes, they’re ready to serve.

This Noche Buena menu could be cheaper if you received a free Christmas ham from your employer. Otherwise, consider more affordable alternatives to ham such as meatloaf or luncheon meat.

Final Thoughts

More than the food on the table, it’s the joy of spending Christmas with your loved ones that matter. What really makes Noche Buena special are the people you’re sharing food and laughter with. Have a lovely feast on a budget this Christmas Eve!

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