Thursday, August 25, 2016


I made scratch muffins from the build your own basic muffin recipe.   I used blueberries and apple pieces to use up my one lone apple and I used 1 cup of f,our and 1 cup of the dollar tree oatmeal.   I figured it was a good way to use it up.   It's still good food value. It's just not what I want to eat for breakfast.    Costco for the same price is a better texture. The muffins were fine.  

I also made the penne pasta with a red cream sauce and sausage.    It was fine.   It's almost like a hamburger helper in technique, which made it easy.   The total cost was 1.08 for the three of us for the meal.   I had it with fresh green beans and a hard roll from the dollar tree.    Total meal cost 1.58.   

I adjusted the recipe to meet our needs.   It called for cream cheese.  Cream cheese is expensive.   I substituted sour cream.  I almost always have sour cream on hand,   I didn't want to open a .58 can of peppers, so I added red pepper flakes.   My husband doesn't like onion pieces on anything, so I used onion  powder.    It still tasted delicious and it kept the cost down.   Little things can make the dish taste the same, but cut the costs.   

The government is bailing out the dairy farmers because they are producing too much cheese and there is an abundance of it.   That's good news for people going to the food banks, but bad news for the consumer.   Less cheese means the price in dairy will go up.    I have a stock on hand and I will try for another five pounds or so.   That will soften the blow.    Another reason why stocking helps.   
We use a lot of cheese ,but  my daughter went vegan, so we probably will use  a bit less of cheese and sour cream. 

Groceries on the cheap just means you have to reinvent and be flexible.   Our great grandmothers did during the Great Depression, and we can too.    Incorporate anything that is in Abundance that  is healthy and avoid the things that are not.    Unfortunately, once for any reason , a food product goes up in this country it seem it never goes down.  Coffee went up after the coffee shortage of the 70's , beef had a drought several years ago.  The prices are still really high.    We adjusted by using less.   Beans have taken a hike.   It all about supply and demand.    With people getting in the vegetarian and vegan bandwagon, the demand is higher.     We used to get two pounds of pintos for a dollar.   The new packages at the dollar tree are a pound and a half.    That is still cheaper than Winco bulk.    I'm not seeing a lot of dry beans at Kroger for any price.    You can still get them at grocery outlet and in bulk at Costco.    The price at Costco has risen also.  

For saying that the Feds seem to think that the seniors COL hasn't rise , our mandatory bills have risen  1600 dollars and the price of food is going up.    Three tenth of one percent isn't going to cut it.      Because we get a raise, they can raise the amount of Medicare premium too.    It's just going to take a lot of imagination and ingenuity to make the ends meet.   We can do this as the commercial says.     Maybe things will improve of the right person gets elected.  LOL.  We were supposed to get a supplemental bonus, instead, they balanced the budget on the backs of the old people by raising Medicare and Medicare deductibles.    Enough complaining. I this is supposed to be about stretching a buck.    

Go with the flow, make meals from the foods that are abundant and healthy.    Find the RBP of the foods you eat.    Buy on bulk when it's the lowest as long as you can keep it from going bad.    Recognize the eating habits of your family and portion control.    The RDA of protein for a normal person is 6 ounces a day, part of which is supposed to be eggs.   Balance protein and starch to make for more healthy diet.    Moderation is the key and you might even loose a little weight in the process.  

We can do this.   It's all about not paying  top dollar for your food.    The fancier the store, the more you are going to pay.   Know your prices of the items you buy in a regular basis.    Stock when the prices are low.   

The big argument with this is that of you don't have enough money, how do you do that?   If you are laying 1/2, you get twice as much for your buck.  It snowballs.  Buy an extra can of something one week when it's 1/2 price. . Buy another thing because you aren't buying the first thing. Just buy basics at first.    Don't let your children gorge themselves on so,etching just because you have more.   I have seen mothers lock the preferred food up.   I've also seen some give  each child a box of cereal for a specific time frame, mark it with their name and when it's gone, it's gone.    Some clever mother that wanted to make the Christmas cookies ahead, but feared her children. Would eat the, if they saw them, wrapped  them up on butcher paper and marked them LIVER!    
Whatever works.   Children don't need to gorge themselves in something they like and. It eat balanced.   It's not good for them. Or your budget.  Portion control.  No child needs to eat an entire two pound roast!    They don't need to gorge themselves on everybody's share of what they like and not leave some for the rest of the family.   Have plenty of food so no one goes hungry.   I met a family once that said, everyone was welcome to second helpings. But up I had to take a little bit of everything.   I also have taken to giving my granddaughter a small portion of everything.  If she wants more, she  can have more.   Also, don't serve big  glasses of juice at meals.   The sugar fills you up and then they don't eat a good meal.    The nutritionist when my children were little told me not to feed the children nice at all.   She said they were better off with the apple than the apple juice.  The dentist will tell you that apple juice in a tippy cup is really bad for their teeth.    Stick to a adequate amount of milk, and water or herbal tea without sugar.    

I hope this helps people.   Take from it what you can use.    It's free and I'm not getting paid for doing it.   LOL.   

Groceries on the cheap is looking at the "put the meal on the table train" from  a different perspectives

The emphasis is on purchasing good shelf stable or frozen food  for a RBP in quantity - enough to last you until they goes on sale again or to keep a controlled non-perishable stock of the things you  use  on a weekly basis. 

This means that instead of shopping daily or weekly for just the things you need to cook your meals for the week. You go to two stores and buy :
1) a protein that is a RBP - enough to make that meal for x number of days. (I.e.: if you eat it once a week, buy enough for 4 meals.)
2) produce and dairy you will need to fill in the meals for the week. 
3) a stock item, if you need to and it is on a RBP - enough to fill in to your self imposed stock level. 

You often are paying 1/2 price for your food.   This allows you to put well-balanced meals on the table consistently on a four dollar a day per person budget.   You spend more time on the 
locomotive ( planning and shopping ) end of the train, and less time in the caboose ( kitchen )by
cooking more efficiently. 

 Four dollars a day is the target amount for people on snap.   My premise is that of you can do it on 4 dollars a day, spending more is not hard.  

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