Since arriving at Villa Park from Norwich, Lambert's recruitment policy has largely been built around lower league additions and lesser known foreign imports.
Owner Randy Lerner had previously funded a more lavish shopping spree, particularly under Martin O'Neill, but Lambert insists there is no going back to those days in the near future.
Villa recorded their first win in five matches on Saturday when goals from summer signings Leandro Bacuna and Libor Kozak delivered a 2-0 result over Cardiff.
The pair cost around £10million between them, hardly peanuts but a relatively modest outlay in an increasingly inflated market.
"That's the game...it's a challenge," said Lambert.
"We won't be able to go out and buy the big type of players. We have to look at the market...the young lads. We give them an opportunity and hopefully they take it.
"Randy has been great and (chief executive) Paul Faulkner has been great but we won't be able to do what you would call a massive signing."
Lambert is glad to see next week's international break coming, having suffered a spate of injuries recently.
Andreas Weimann, Gabriel Agbonlahor, Fabian Delph and Antonio Luna are all hopeful of returning to action sooner rather than later and Lambert is crossing his fingers for reinforcements.
"If you look at the side we put out against Cardiff you'll see we have lots of injuries at the moment, nearly half a team out," he said.
"You know things are bare when you're putting young kids on the bench as we did.
"We had to make sure we got through this one and thankfully we seem to have done that with the win.
"If we get three or four of them back for the West Brom game (on November 25) then good.
"All things being okay, we'll get a few back."
Bluebirds boss Malky Mackay saw his side go within 14 minutes of a draw against Villa, albeit in a scrappy affair that neither side looked worthy of winning.
The stalemate ended when Bacuna bent a fine free-kick into David Marshall's top corner and Kozak sealed it with a header six minutes from time.
A two-goal margin was hard on Cardiff skipper Steven Caulker, who put in an impressive shift leading the back four and even caused one or two problems at the other end.
He had been considered an outsider for England recognition but missed out on Roy Hodgson's latest squad - something Mackay is sure will change given time.
The Scot said: "What I've said to Steven is just to keep playing at a consistent level like he has been in the top league, and if you do that you'll get plenty of England caps, whether that's now or in six months' time or a year from now.
"He's 21 years old, he's captain of a team in the Premier League and if he keeps playing like he has done then plenty of England caps will come for him."