Feeding a family of 8 a Holiday Feast on a Budget #SaveMoneyEatBetter

With four children, we are used to feeding a crowd. Most days someone has a friend over for dinner or my parents (or a neighbour) are here, so having eight people at the dinner table is very normal. I have been told too many times that I cook to feed a crowd. I figure, even if everything isn’t all eaten that night, leftovers will be handy for the following day. But, when it comes to cooking for the holidays, I always try to stretch my dollars.

Day to day, it’s possible to feed a crowd on a budget if you cook casseroles, pasta, soups or chili. And, using seasonal produce and watching for sales makes it easier than you would anticipate. So when it comes to holiday feasts, it really isn’t any different.

Walmart always has amazing prices around the holidays, so make sure you watch your store flyer!

Recently I was presented with a challenge. Could I feed a group of eight people for $40 shopping at Walmart? I happily agreed, because I knew I could.

In our family you say holiday feast and it usually always includes a turkey. There are few people in my home who prefer ham, so we often cook both to keep everyone content. As you can imagine there are always a lot of leftovers for sandwiches throughout the week. Fresh veggies are also a tradition, and always an affordable option. You can find these easily in the produce section of your local Walmart.

With a little thought I was able to make the following recipes (most were adapted from Walmart.ca)

Brown sugar mustard glazed ham: $9

Steamed Turnip: $2

Oven roasted carrots and celery: $3

Sage-rubbed roasted turkey: $15

Garlic rosemary mashed potatoes: $3

Bakery rolls: $3

JELL-O Poke cake: $5

Brown Sugar Mustard Glazed Ham


1500 g Great Value boneless smoked ham
170 g Brown SugarPacked
3 tsp Honey
1 tsp Dijon Mustard
1 tsp Orange or pineapple juice (I used orange)


  1. Preheat oven to 325 F°. Place ham in a shallow roasting pan just big enough to hold it.
  2. Roast in centre of oven uncovered, allowing 15 minutes per pound of boneless ham, about 55 minutes in total.
  3. Stir sugar with honey, Dijon and juice in a small bowl. About 30 minutes before ham is finished roasting, generously brush with sugar mixture. To form a rich glaze, continue brushing with mixture every 10 minutes. Transfer ham to a platter.
  4. Add any remaining glaze to pan juices. Scrape up all browned bits from pan bottom and set pan over medium. Boil gently, uncovered and stirring often, until slightly reduced, five to 10 minutes. Pour over sliced ham or as needed like gravy. It will keep well up to one week covered and refrigerated.

Roasted Carrots and Celery

  • Six large carrots
  • Six celery stalks

Wash and slice each. Place in pan with ham before cooking. Allow to cook all together being sure to turn the vegetables over.



Garlic Rosemary Mashed Potatoes


2 lbs Great Value Potatos
1 tsp Salt
0.5 tsp Club House Garlic Powder
0.5 tsp Club House Rosemary Leaves crushed
0.25 tsp Club House Ground Black Pepper
0.5 cup Milk
0.25 cup Butter cut into chunks
1 tsp Club House Parsley Flakes


  1. Place potatoes in medium saucepan and cover with water. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 10 to 15 minutes or until potatoes are fork tender. Drain and return potatoes to saucepan.
  2. Sprinkle with salt, garlic powder, rosemary and pepper. Mash with potato masher, gradually adding milk, then butter. Stir in parsley.

Steamed Turnip


2 lbs Fresh turnip
2 tbsp Butter
1 pinch Salt


  1. Peel and chop turnips into 1/2″ pieces
  2. Place in pot and cover with water.
  3. Put lid on and bring to a boil. Turn down and cook for 20 minutes. Turnips are done when they pierce easily with a knife.
  4. Drain water keeping turnips in hot pan.
  5. Add butter and salt to taste. Mash if desired
  6. Serve hot.


Sage-Rubbed Roasted Turkey 


1 Whole turkey 6 to 7 kg, fresh or frozen, thawed
1 tbsp Vegetable Oil 15 mL
2 tbsp Club House Ground Sage 30 mL
1 tbsp Club House Seasoned Salt 15 mL
2 tsp Club House Paprika 10 mL
1.5 tsp Club House Garlic Powder 7 mL
1 tsp Club House Ground Black Pepper 5 mL


  1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Place turkey on rack in shallow roasting pan. Brush turkey with oil. Mix sage, seasoned salt, paprika, garlic powder and black pepper in small bowl. Sprinkle 1 tbsp (15 mL) of the seasoning mixture inside turkey. Spread remaining seasoning mixture over entire surface and under skin of turkey. Add 1/2 cup (125 mL) water to pan. Cover loosely with heavy duty foil.
  2. Roast for one hour. Remove foil. Roast two to two and a half hours longer or until internal temperature reaches 185°F, basting occasionally with pan juices. Remove turkey from oven. Let stand 20 minutes. Transfer to platter or carving board and slice. Reserve pan juices to make gravy or to serve with turkey.


To complete the meal I was able to pick up a bag of a dozen white rolls from the bakery for $3. Rolls are great for dipping in gravy and eating with your yummy, festive meal. Since no feast is complete without dessert, I was able to find an inexpensive Poke cake, just under $5 and topped it with slices of seasonal fruit.


JELLO Poke Cake


2 pkg. white cake mix

1 cup boiling water 1 pkg. (3 oz.) JELL-O Strawberry Flavor Gelatin

1/2 cup cold water 1 tub (8 oz.)

2 jars of icing ( we chose cream cheese)


  1. Prepare cake batter and bake as directed on package for 13”x 9” pan. Cool cake in pan 15 minutes. Pierce cake with large fork at 1/2” intervals.
  2. Add boiling water to gelatin mix in small bowl; stir 2 minutes until completely dissolved. Stir in cold water and pour over cake.
  3. Refrigerate three hours. Frost cake with icing. Refrigerate one hour.

Walmart is a one stop shop for the holidays. A complete feast for under $40! Saving me time and money this year.

You can pick up all the ingredients for this meal from your local Walmart Supercentre and check out the Walmart Recipe Centre for more recipes and inspiration for your holiday table.

When you have to cook a holiday feast for a crowd what recipe you use?

*Price Reference

Items and prices are available in Canada only. Prices are accurate at the time of recipe development. Prices, selection and availability may vary by store and on Walmart.ca.

This post is sponsored by Walmart Canada as part of the $40 Christmas Dinner for 8 program. In exchange for this review, I have received special perks in the form of products and/or compensation. All opinions on this blog are my own.




  1. Wow it all looks so good! Great job! Feeding 9 daily is something I’ve gotten used to so when the holidays roll around I’m always looking for new and cheap ways to feed the family! This all looks so good and those prices I can stand behind. Great idea I will have to for sure keep this in mind for our Christmas dinner this year!

  2. Great job at feeding the family for 40.00 I don’t think I would be able to do it myself, I can spend that much just on me and hubby!!

  3. good job… now a days so many people have the excuse of working and tend to rely on canned goods way too much. Even though I work 9-10 hr days, 5 days a week, I still am able to make quite a few things, although I don’t garden, so I do have to rely on canned or frozen veggies.

  4. Sue Frampton says

    I could never do it for 8 I’m lucky if I stick to a budget for a family of 4

  5. This sounds like a great dinner to feed the family!! Love that you got it for under $40 at Walmart!

  6. alalisainfo says

    I often have a hard time budgeting for feasts and larger meals (especially when entertaining). Love your tips and tricks because I love playing hostess for dinner parties.

  7. These all sound like great recipes. Especially that sage rubbed turkey breast!

  8. Congrats on completing this challenge. A little planning goes a long way.

  9. That all looks so good! Cooking for a crowd can be expensive but it’s nice when you can find good deals at places like Walmart!

  10. Sounds like you did a great job! I think that if you plan well then you can do just about anything! I LOVE this challenge! I need to try it myself just for the fun of it!

  11. I love when I can feed my family quality foods on a dime. It is getting harder and harder to do these days.

  12. Lisa Bristol says

    These are great recipes. I am going to try the Sage-Rubbed Roasted Turkey this Christmas.

  13. I have been looking for something new to do with my turkey for the holidays. Sage-Rubbed Roasted Turkey looks amazing.

  14. I love all of this. I’m always on a budget, so I have to watch what I buy. It’s great to see all these recipes of yours.

  15. This is awesome, I need to share it with a friend on a very limited budget!

  16. My brother and sister in law have a large family and are always looking for ways to feed their brood on a budget! Definitely going to share this post with them! Thanks!

  17. Linda Klages says

    My kind of meal – I didn’t know they sell cream cheese icing – BONUS

  18. Nena Sinclair says

    I’m always on the lookout for budget friendly recipes! These all sound delicious!

  19. Elva Roberts says

    You certainly made a substantial meal for 8 for $40. I would be happy to share such a varied and delicious meal. You are a real role model for frugal and good living..

  20. Darlene Demell says

    That is a great meal for $40. I have a hard time trying to save money for hubby and I let alone 8 people.

  21. Elva Roberts says

    I would like to see more frugal meals in your recipes because I was so impressed with this one. Thank you for all your delicious recipes.

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