To recap, we have covered in part, the planning and the shopping. Now the cooking. What to do with the stuff after you get it home.
Precooking your meat saves a lot of time at dinner time. It also buys your meat when it is the cheapest in bulk, and portion controls to so you get more meals for your buck. I have a post on almost free pizza. If you , for instance, fry and defat sausage, and portion it for quiche or soup making, and there is a little leftover, put it in a bag in the freezer door. Ditto any other meat you can put on a pizza. When you are chopping a vegetable that can go on a pizza, do the same. When you have nough, make pizza. There is an easy pizza crust recipe on an earlier blog. Also, I got a pizza crust package at big lots for .50. ALBERTSONS was supposed to have one for .50 as well, but I didn't find it. Also, there is a bisquick recipe and a fridge bread dough recipe on an earlier post as well. Many options. You want to pay close to 2.50 or less for cheese. Lately, Costco has been my best bet. Cheddar blocks I have been fitting for 2.00 a pound on a sale, limit 1.
I got clams for a buck at ALBERTSONS this week. Two cans makes clam cakes, or clam chowder. Add a cheese biscuit and you have a good cheap meal.
A slow cooker can be your best friend in the kitchen. There are literally hundreds of dump and turn on recipes out there. Just be aware of the fact that if you pay dollars each for cans of soup, or other remade ingredients , you are defeating your purpose. There is also a recipe for cream soup base on another blog or find a good sale. I got soup for fifty cents at ALBERTSONS. Look for recipes that are more scratch. I post them when I find them.
Sloppy joes are cheaper to make than hamburgers. Again, use a recipe that doesn't call for a two dollar can of sauce. Think ahead and pull some tomato sauce fom a large can if you are making
something else. The larger can at big lots is cheaper than two smaller cans. Big lots doesn't take food stamps, but they don't carry a lot of food either, so your OOP is low if you are on snap. Buns are at the bread store for free when you buy your months worth of bread often.
I write the basics off the top of my head every month. Please feel free to read others. We shop at two chain stores unless the sales are bad that week. We go to Costco and Winco about every month to six weeks. We go to the bread store when we are out of bread and I can't get it cheaper at the store on sale. Grocery outlet and big lots are on a need to have or when we are in the area for something else . I just started going to Fred Meyers and rite aid on Sunday or Monday if the ads warrant it, rite aid has up rewards that sometimes pay you to buy something. If I am going to need it, I get it. Then I use my up reward bucks on something else I am going to need that is cheap, has up rewards and preferably I have a coupon for. I have been getting toothpaste for free, along with mouthwash.
The dollar store is a good resource for some items. I have been getting recipe starter for .50. It is 2.59 at SAFEWAYS, this is another case of buying is cheaper than scratch at 50. I would not buy it if it cost more, frozen veggies are cheaper there as well usually. Ditto pepperoni. I was getting it for
.50 for what is 3.50 at the store.
I did a blog on dinners at the dollar store, just for fun. We did not eat the dinners, it was virtual, so I can't attest to the taste of them, LOL. The frozen veggies and potatoes are good. My family doesn't like shoestring. I bought peppers to use with shredded chicken and some soy sauce for stir fry with rice. Rice is cheap at the dollar store.
I buy the .25 cans of tomato sauce for pizza , and to make a little sauce for the grandbabys lunch.
It's worth it because there is no waste.
There is a recipe for No Brainer pasta on an earlier post. It is my answer to a burger meal box. Less non-passive time, so simple anyone can do it, and a lot cheaper.
If you once learn how to read the labels of the food in boxes, you will be amazed and probably almost never buy a box of something again. I buy ready made in moderation. If something is cheaper than scratch, which is not too often. I got a cake mix for free, and another for .14. A cup of flour costs .075 cents in bulk. At seven and a half cents a cup for flour, it eas cheaper to buy a cake mix, I like to keep one on hand so that I have it in case I need desert quickly. We often have ice cream or some kind of fruit. We are coming on to apple season.
Buy your fruits and vegetables in season, they will taste better, and be cheaper,
A good exercise would be to list the meats or other protein sources on a piece of paper, or on the computer, and then list under them the things that you can make with them. The kids can brainstorm with you if they are old enough. It gives you a variety of meals.
Pizza, soups, sloppy joes, oven dinners, hot sandwiches, all take almost no time to make. An ovn dinner that you can put in the oven and walk away to do other thongs is a stress less dinner.
Thanks for stopping by
Please share. I am writing this blog to hopefully help people save on their food bill, because they have to, or because they want to. SNAP monies are going to be cut in November I hear. Many people are still unemployed or under employed. It is possible to eat for less and still eat good, somewhat healthy meals. I can't help people if I can't reach people. I am not saying that your food is going to magically appear cooked on your table. It takes a little planning and work, but the rewards are worth it. no child should have to wake up to empty cupboards at the end of the month. The insecurity of that is a terrible injustice. And, no child should have a diet of top ramen and potato chips.
Good food on the table cheap is doable.