How to Set Christmas Food Budget: The P1000 Noche Buena Challenge

4 November 2021
How to Set Christmas Food Budget The P1000 Noche Buena Challenge min

Christmas is rapidly approaching, and everyone is rushing to complete the necessary preparations for the celebrations. It’s good that the restrictions at most places in the country are already reduced to Alert Level 2 that people are now starting to go out again and somehow enjoy life talk and their usual activities. Business inquiries and transactions are somehow also reaching the "new normal".


In the same way that we adapt to new normal situations in our ordinary routine, Christmas may also require a few changes so that we may safely celebrate the season and look forward to future celebrations.


In the Philippines, most Filipinos make great preparations for the Noche Buena or the Christmas Eve dinner as it is one of the most anticipated events in every Filipino family every Christmas Season. But because things aren't the same as they used to be due to the global pandemic, everyone is taking the road of practicality into account while planning for this great feast.


So, let’s take a look at some of the delicious Christmas Noche Buena ideas and recipes around or below Php 1,000.

Noche Buena Challenge 1 Recipe: Total Cost of Php 625.15 to Php 763.55 (Good for six people)

  • 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

Lechon manok

Although ham is the star of most Noche Buenas, you can go for lechon manok as an alternative for below Php 1, 000 budget. You can buy 1 whole chicken from the public market so that you can have the chance to choose a bigger size and season it with recipes you prefer.

Spaghetti aglio e olio

As an alternative to the traditional Filipino pasta dish, try aglio e Olio, which is both cheaper and healthier. You may also add shredded or boneless chicken breast to the spaghetti dish to make it more delicious and add some texture. If you like, you can also make rice noodles as an alternative.

Cheese sticks

Another great hack in your Noche Buena to save money is the cheese sticks. You may use cheese sticks fill in the place of the more expensive keso de bola.

Fruit Salad

Meanwhile, for the dessert, the whole family can enjoy the sweet, tasty, and classic fruit salad.

Noche Buena Challenge 2 Recipe: Total Cost of Php 685.20 to Php 926.71 (Great for those who have kids in the family)

  • 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
  • Tomato 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

Fried chicken

Since the enjoyment and happiness of the kids are the priority for your Noche Buena, you can buy a whole chicken from the local public market and golden fry it for the Christmas dinner.

Pinoy-style spaghetti

This one is every Filipino kids’ favorite. Pinoy-style spaghetti is a bit different in taste compared to the usual spaghetti since it is sweeter which is perfect for the kids’ tastes! If you want to save money, you can even use corned beef as an alternative to ground pork. As an alternative you can also have a delicious white sauce spaghetti or much famously known as carbonara.

Lumpiang shanghai

This dish is not just best-loved by the kids but also by adults. This is a common cuisine in any celebrations and parties. You can also add some baguio beans to your lumpiang shanghai to make it healthier.

Leche Flan

It's fairly common for Filipinos to serve leche flan as part of festivities and get-togethers of every kind. Apart from the reason that Filipinos love sweets, Leche flan is a staple dessert in the Philippines because of their huge families and their love of festivities.


Noche Buena Dishes for a complete meal course Challenge

On the other hand, if you are looking for a complete course meal challenge for the whole family this Noche Buena, here is a complete Noche Buena dishes that your family will surely enjoy, especially for photo booth lovers, while staying on a budget.

Appetizer: Tomato and Feta Cheese Bites (Total Cost: Php 134.75)

For your appetizers, it couldn't be simpler to whip together a party-worthy snack! Simply top your favorite crackers with roasted tomatoes and crumbled feta cheese.

Side Dish: Chicken Macaroni Salad (Total Cost: Php 237.00)

This salad is another holiday staple! Roasted chicken may be purchased at the grocery store and then shredded for the salad, which will save you time in the kitchen.

Side Dish: Baked Ratatouille (Total Cost: Php 129.90)

It's simply chopped-up vegetables and all purpose flour in this fancy-looking and fancy-sounding meal! You can get them for a lesser price if you buy them from a local public market nearest you.

Main Dish: Roast Pork Loin (Total Cost: Php 380.15)

Pork is a lot less expensive than beef, but it's also a lot more flavorful and satisfying when it comes to the overall quality of the meal. If you are on a tight budget this year, consider roasting pork instead of having some roast beef this holiday season.

Dessert: Buko Pandan Salad (Total Cost: Php 133.25)

Save up some money by creating your own buko gelatin using gulaman powder at home. It's enjoyable and at the same time, a cinch to make. You will just be needing a few ingredients to come up with this wonderful dessert in no time.

*The estimated costs for this complete course meal Noche Buena dishes is roughly around Php 1, 015. 05. And the great thing about it is this can already serve at least 6 to 8 people.


The holidays are a time to celebrate and to spend some quality time with relatives and loved ones. It is also about preparing some delicious food for dinner together at home. Regardless of how we choose to spend our Christmas Eve this year, let's remember that the ultimate significance of this holiday is the birth of our savior, Jesus Christ. Have a safe Noche Buena every Juan!


Complete food preparations for different occasions:
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