VIDEO: Money-Saving Meal Tips Cause Controversy

Kids eating at a restaurant | Image by freepik

TikTok users expressed mixed emotions over a father’s budget-friendly tips to save money on kids’ meals at restaurants.

Josh Mileham, a 37-year-old father of four from Texas, shared a TikTok video that quickly went viral. In the video, he orders a fajita platter that he transforms into quesadillas for his kids. Mileham uses the hot skillet to convert one meal into a feast for his whole family.

Mileham takes the leftover cheese and spills it onto a leftover tortilla before folding it in half and placing it under the skillet. He tells his children that it will take about two minutes for the quesadilla to cook. The video then cuts to Mileham removing the finished product from under the skillet and handing it to one of his sons.


Who else hates when you order 5 kids meals and no one eats it! We have tons of cheap hacks for eating out with kids! #family #restaurant #hack #eatcheap #fyp

♬ original sound – glazedepoxy

In the video, the son takes a bite, smiles, and gives the meal a thumbs-up. However, TikTok users shared a variety of sentiments, with some criticizing Mileham for not feeding his children enough food and others finding these money-saving tips helpful.

One user commented, “omg, this man is a freaking genius!!!” Another said, “Don’t do that! They rarely clean the wood boards!” While another offered, “Or just get a kids meal for $10 for your kids.”

“People are hilarious — in the comments people are screaming that I should get them each a kid’s meal,” Mileham told TODAY. “I’m like, absolutely not. They’re going to take two bites and throw it away.”

In another video, Mileham features one of his sons reviewing a self-made quesadilla.


Replying to @Artistry behind the brand. @Keith Lee He’s comin for ya! 👌 #tastetest #viralquesdadilla #quesadillarecipe #mexicanrestaurant #mexicanfood #rateit1to10 #cheapmeal #hack #restauranthacks #keithllee

♬ original sound – Keith Lee

The boy says, “The texture was decent. The taste was decent. It’s a quesadilla, what do you expect? Six out of 10. It feeds me, and it’s cheap.” He then explains how a kid’s quesadilla at the restaurant is $6.99, while his version was essentially free since it was part of a meal and even better tasting than the average kid’s quesadilla. The video ends with the boy asking for dessert and another boy chiming in, saying he also wants dessert.

Despite the backlash from online critics, Mileham posted another video—what he calls “part two of the cheap family meal tricks”—on May 7 at Texas Roadhouse. He ordered a pulled pork sandwich and a side of fries and created six sliders using complimentary rolls, leaving enough pulled pork on the original sandwich for one of the adults to eat. The total was $17.30, and he and his wife added a $20 tip.


Replying to @alejandrorios9837 Follow for more money saving tips!!! #family #eatingout #cheapmeals #texasroadhouse #dfw #dallas #texas #fyp #savemoney #eatgood

♬ original sound – glazedepoxy

Mileham shared another tip for saving money at Starbucks. In a video, he orders a venti-size iced coffee (20 ounces) and four ice waters. The video then cuts to him walking into his kitchen, where he spills out the water from the four ice waters, while keeping the ice. He then divides the venti coffee between the four cups of ice and gives them to his kids.


Get your kids @Starbucks on a budget!!! 🔥🔥🔥 #starbucks #venti #hack #whyspendmore #kids #budgethack #livefrugal #moneysaving #fyp

♬ original sound – glazedepoxy

In response to his critics, Mileham told TODAY, “I could care less about the haters. There are families that don’t go out to eat often because they think they can’t afford it. I’m here to help those people. I want them to know it’s possible to have a decent meal out for $20.”

Mileham is currently working on a video on how to eat cheaply at Panda Express, according to TODAY.

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