Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Couponing - not extreme

Couponing notes 


Why Coupon.   The answer is a matter of saving money,   My dad always said that the price of the coupon was factored into the purchase price, so you were loosing money if you didn't  use the coupon.    

The consensus of opinion is that it takes lots of time and most of the coupons are for a quarter and for things that you don't buy anyway.   Not true now.   I spend about a hour a month on couponing and I save as much as fifty dollars a month.   I get coupons for laundry soap, and staples like yogurt, butter, cheese, pork tenderloin.    

The extreme coupon show has given the concept of couponing a bad wrap.   It wasn't real.   Real people don't coupon like that.   No one needs 90 bottles of red pepper sauce.    No one gets paid to buy things. - except at the drug stores with reward points or when you get a reward for changing prescription to a new pharmacy .   And no one on there right mind would neglect housework and  family time to spend forty hours a week clipping numerous coupons for ninty bottles of red pepper sauce.    

There was a nice lady on the today show that was talking about couponing,   Mat lauer asked her what she would say to naysayers.    She said.     I don't think I'll ever forget it.    If you don't understand , you ain't ever been broke enough.   

Coupon inserts are booklets about the size of a half sheet of paper.   There are two companies that print them.   Smart source and red plum.   One of them comes in the Sunday paper  , except for on holiday weekends.   The paper is a dollar at the dollar tree starting the Saturday before .   The other insert comes in the mail.    P and g comes on the first Sunday of the month.   

Coupons can also be found in store ads. On merchandise, ( don't take the coupon  off before you get to the checkouts  and  remind the checker  ) , and on line.   

If you particularly like a product.  E mail the manufacturer and tell them.   They will often send you coupons.   

Download coupon drivers once 
You can print two coupons per month of any particular product.   
They come out 1st of the month.   Big dollar coupons go fast.  You snooze , you loose.   
Make sure you don't have your printer on double sided.   You can print on a used one every of paper. And you can print in black and white.    

While we are on electronics.   



What to do with them 

I glance at inserts and pull anything that gets up and grabs me.....a dollar off blue bunny...oh, yah, I'm all over that one.   
Then , i file the inserts in a file folder by month,   I keep three months back and rotate the last month for the first.    It helps if you,can remember to put the date of the insert in the front of it.    

The printed coupons. I have in a  binder that has photo inserts  and baseball card holders in it.   If you have few, there is a coupon wallet with dividers at the dollar store.  

Once  a month , I clean out the outdated coupons while watching tv.   

Coupon rules.   

Verbage has to be exact.  The picture doesn't , but the words do.   
Dollar tree takes coupons, buy only 4 per day per household and only  two of them can be printed coupons.   
Big lots and grocery outlet don't take coupons.   
Winco will not stack coupons.   
About anywhere else will take coupons and stack them.   

QFC has the most lienient coupon policy.   They will use a basket coupon before you use other coupons.  Pick your checker.    Old men aren't the best for couponing,   

The most bang for your buck.  Is where you can match, a sale, a manufacturers coupon, and a basket coupon.   A basket coupon is where a store will print a coupon for five dollars off of 25.00.  For example.   You get the most bang for your buck if you stick to only spending the 25.00.   Stacking coupons with a sale can save as much as 78 percent.    It's worth a little planning.   

Sign up for the rewards cards for the grocery stores.   QFC gives  you free stuff and coupons to load electronically.   Just download or make a note of what they

Tuesday bites

Tuesday is the day that I leave free for chats.   It's our  errand day. Today I thought we would go back to basics.    Groceries on the cheap as it is now has been evolving for fifty years.   Even the last five years that I have been writing this blog everyday, prices have risen  and I have been on a mission to get to easy and the least amount we can eat on and still have good, nutritious balanced meals.   It's a game, it's because social security hasn't gone up in three years as we can tell.  They gave us a dinky raise and took it back in medical.  They aren't planning on giving us any raises forever and still insurances and taxes are still rising.    We can't be the only ones that are dealing with this, so I am still growing and learning.  I hear it's the best thing to do on your old age, or keeps your brain functioning,

I've had the lowest price on food part of the matrix nailed for some years.   I have always cooked some scratch, but I started branching out to things that I haven't tackled before.    Bread?   Bread is one thing that you can make better than the store with almost no effort and up to ninety percent  less than store bought,   Soups are another thing that you can cut the cost of by ninety percent  and not slave in the kitchen.  LOL.

There is something about a bowl of steaming homemade soup and hot crusty  bread out of the oven that is satisfying,

Basics.   Groceries on the cheap takes a different abroad to buying your food.   It's nothing new, our great grandmothers put food up for the winter on the farm.   They didn't have the freezers that we have today, so thy canned and I suspect dried food.  

The concept is the same.    Instead of buying what you need for a week, trying to remember

everything you need to cook the meals on your plan, you buy a core group of foods at the lowest price you can find and buy enough to last you until the food goes on sale again.    This takes knowing the BEST prices on the core foods you use,   Everyone has a set group of foods that they cook dinners with.    The average house rotates the same 7-10 entrees .    Identify the ingredients you use to make your meals and find the best place to buy those foods.   Make a list.    Years ago they called that a price list.   It tracked the cost of a certain group of foods and soon you found a pattern of when  it was the cheapest.    That's when you stock,    This isn't hoarding,  you set a specific amount you are going timhike and when your stock is depleatimg , you start looking for a good sale.    In our house that would be :

  • Diced tomatoes,   - I can still find them for.50 
  • Canned beans .50
  • Pasta sauce : .88 .for canned and   1.00 in jars. 
  • Dry beans - 1.5 pounds of pinto beans are a dollar at dollar tree.   I want less than a dollar a pound,    You can get them cheaper in bulk, but beans do get old and we don't use enough.
  • Flour - it varies between six and seven dollars at Costco for 25 pounds,   
  • Sugar - two dollars for four pounds,   
  • Canned green beans and corn .50 
  •  Frozen veggies are 100 a pound - cheapest in five pound bags at Costco or sometimes better at Winco,
  • Frozen potatoes are cheapest at Winco.   I get two pounds for a bit more than a dollar.   They are not always perfectly shaped or like tater tots equivalent are round, but not as high.   
  • Cheese target price is two to two fifty a pound
  • A few cake mixes, I want less than a dollar,   Usually at Winco.   
  • Green diced mild chilies are .58 Winco.   Saves up to a dollar a can,   

Don't get discouraged.  My mother had them in her head.  I used to call her and ask what the lowest price was.   Now they are in my head and I get calls from people all the time! LOL.   

Meat is bought bulk on a rotation basis.   Every week, someone has a meat on a good price. Decide meats that fall into a average of two dollars a pound and buy on a rotation basis enough for the amount of meals you will eat in a month,   When you get home from the store, cook the meats that are appropriate  to cook ( ground meats and de-fat) and portion control the rest .   And freeze.   We buy :

Pork loin : roast, chops, stew (150 at Costco wholesale was the last I got ) 

Split chicken breast: chicken breast can be 8.00 a pound.   Split chicken breast is between 100 and 1.50 a pound.  It only takes a few minutes to cut off the ribs and cook them with water and veggies for stock and the added bonus is the meat from the bones can make another meal,   

Hamburger -7 percent fat,    Cook, de-fat and portion control for dinners,   A pound serves four to five.  You can bake off meatballs or make meat loaf and taco meat if your family is large enough to buy ten pound quantities.    I make meatballs, use a portion scoop and bake them the size of ping pong balls on a rack with a sheet pan underneath,   The meatballs don't sit on their fat and it's more healthy and easier to cook in bulk,    

Sausage is usually cheaper at Costco on a three pound chub. (800) sometimes I can get it cheaper  with coupons,    Cook de-fat and freeze.    

Finding the RBP or target price ( nothing to do with the store with the red balls ) is the biggest part of cutting your food bill.    You want to get to the point where you can pay 1/2 price. Protein is a big part of your grocery bill.   Start there.   

Portion control. Portion control,   Portion control. 

Have set prices for things,  if they are too much, don't buy them unless it's something you just have to have.   You don't HAVE TO HAVE steak or ice cream!  LOL.  

You want GOOD food cheap : not CHEAP food.   

Monday, April 10, 2017

Winco haul. For this week

Winco haul

Apples .98 pound
Bananas .48 pound
Soft taco shells - low carb 4.38
White beans - 2 pound- 1.75
Green chillis .58
Hamburger buns .88
 Total 34.97

Kitchen management

Monday is kitchen management day.   Winco has a special with coupon at the store or buy a 1/2 of a ham and get a package of bacon for free.    That makes a three pound ham seven dollars or so.   A three pound ham goes a long ways.

It's not something we eat every day, so once or twice a year won't kill us.   LOL

The first step is to look at your meal plans and see what you can do ahead to make life easier.   This weeks plans.  This week, there is not much that can hold a few days: most of the cooking can be done in the morning each day.

  • Clean the fridge and organize it.   Sweet on one refrigerator door shelf,the rest on the other.   Milk gets a shelf and salad dressing gets another.  Top taller shelf gets the oversized things, next floor tortillas, eggs, ; dairy ( yogurt is in a bin ) and the bottom shelf is for the bread bucket and the celery crisper.    
  • We have cheese drawer, vegetable drawer, and meat drawer.   
  • Clean out the drawers and wash them.  I line the drawers with paper towel.    
  • Wash the stove top and filter.   
  • Wash the floor 
  • Organize the pantry : take inventory 
Starting the week clean and organized goes a long ways in taking the stress out of meals.    

Better, cheaper, faster for five dollar or less dinners.    Our average weekly food budget was about 55 a week including stocking.   Without stock, it was 40.00 a week.   The USDA stars for the three of us for the lowest category is about 110.00 .   Note : my daughter reimburses me for daughters part.   
This is done by paying  1/2 price for our food and buying best quality more economical cuts of meat,  
All the while, we are watching our fat, sugar, and salt consumption by cooking scratch instead of packaged products and finding scratch recipes that take minimal time to make dinners more efficient.  
Yes, you can have it all!    

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Grocery hauls : last week Safeways and QFC

Weekly totals from 2-8 of April.

Fred Meyers  34.86 
Safeways 14.42 
QFC 12.15 

Total 61.43 minis stocking leaves 39.93
Obviously we ate some stock products. Still, averagemos less than 1/2'tue usda stats for our family for thrifty food eaten at home.   

QFC buy six, save three and used coupons total 12.15 and 9.74 was stocking 

Milk .99
Kens dressing 199 
Ritz crackers  188 less .75!
Mustard .50 on clearance 
Sugar was 2.00 for four pounds. 

Cheese,/2 lbs. 4.99
Eggs 2 dozen 156
Salmon burgers 4.99
Strawberries 188 

Total 14.42 and 6.55 was stock 

Meal plans for week of April 10.

Meal plans: we work on a protein based matrix.   It consists of 1 beef, 1 fish or shellfish, 2 vegetarian , and three pork or chicken meals.  

  • Breakfast 4 dinner 
  • Pizza 
  • Buttermilk biscuits with chicken pot pie 
  • Pork chops. Scalloped potatoes. Broccoli 
  • Brats with red potatoes, corn on the cob, and onion.    
  • Sloppy joes. French fries (oven roasted ) salad 
  • FIsh packets with green beans and rice 

Yesterday, I made rice mix, and dried apples and made Chilli.  The chili was quick because I just dumped two packets of already cooked , de-farted frozen ground beef on the insta pit and added tomatoes, chillis, and homemade  taco seasoning to it,    

 So far, we dried  eggs, apples. Bananas, carrots and celery.  

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Tomorrow's Fred Meyers ad

The ad for tomorrow.   Easter savings

Spiral ham  1.47
Hamburger , 10 percent  fat  3.77
Strawberries 2/3
Butter 2.50
Sweet potatoes .99
Green beans 1.29
Oranges .99
Cantaloupe 2/5 - the last time I saw them at FM at that price they were picked before they were ripe.  
Kroger vegetables, tomatoes 🍅 and beans 2/1 - this is a stock up price.  

Note :

I can usually get ground beef with 7 percent fat at Winco 3.28
Heritage Farms chicken breast are 199.  Last week I got Foster Farms for less and de-boned it.   Foster far,s is Washington grown and processed and heritage  farms are southern grown  and can be processed in China .

The trick of Groceries on the Cheap is to buy good food cheap ; not buy cheap food.    You base your meals in ingredients that are on the keastmexoemsove side , but buy the best quality you can find,   You don't eat a lot of fresh pineapple or asparagus, but maybe apples and green beans instead.    We always have fresh fruit and berries of some kind and basic fresh veggies.    By sticking to a specific group of different cuts of meat you have the option of buying in bulk even if you have a small family and rotating your stock.  Buying a bulk rotation of meat when it's on a good sale is the key to eating well while saving money.  

My stock items this week would ve the diced tomatoes. Simplifying the amount of things you stock is key in being able to remember your RBP on the foods you buy on a regular basis.  

Stocking the basics at their RBP is the key to  eating at 1/2 price and a,ways having somethings no in the house to make a meal out of.  

Friday, April 7, 2017

Friday recipe : made more healthy,

Bacon cheeseburger potato pie - yum!  Recipe is adjusted to be a bit more healthy.  

1 pound 7 percent fat hamburger ( or mixture of low fat ground  meats)
1/2 cup homemade breadcrumbs
1 tsp  onion powder
2 tsp mustard
1/4 cup Tomato sauce
Make meatloaf mixture, spread in bottom and up sides of a pie plate.  Bake in 375 degree oven for 15 minutes.   Drain any grease from pan.  

Make a packet of mashed potatoes.   ( or equivalent of homemade mashed potatoes )
Fill pie plate that has been drained with the mashed potatoes. Bake an additional 15-20 minutes or until the meat tests done (160 degrees and no longer pink )

Add 1/2 cup of grated cheese to the top of the mashed potatoes and return to the oven for five minutes or until the cheese is melted.  

Take out of the oven and top with  2 slices of cooked crumbled bacon of your choice and sliced tomatoes.  

Let stand five minutes before serving.  

I cut from the original recipe

  • The fat in the burger 
  • The ketchup  in the meatloaf ( HFCS) 
  • 1/2 of the cheese 🧀 
  • 1/2 of the bacon and you can use turkey bacon 🥓 

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Bullet day : ten ways to cut sugar and carbs

It is bullet day - keeping with the theme of yesterday,we will tackle sugar.  Reducing our sugar consumption will help is loose weight and save money too.    So, here are ways to reduce our sugar intake.

  • Stop adding sugar to coffee and tea.   
  • Avoid soda pop and substitute a sparkling water with no sodium and sugar or just plain water,   
  • Stop buying sugar laden cold cereal.   Try oatmeal with some fruit and a sprinkle of cinnamon sugar.   I keep equal parts in a shaker.   The cinnamon is supposed to be good for diabetes ??? And it cuts the sugar. 
  • When baking, you can frequently use less sugar in a recipe. Using recipes from the depression  era or the WWII era is a great resource,   
  • A lot of sauces and dressings call for sugar and can be avoided or you can use less product or make them with less sugar.   
  • Make that candy bar a seldom treat instead of a daily occurrence.   
  • Count your carbs.   It's the easiest way to reduce your sugar in your diet and reduce calories all  the while.    If it's a desert or snack it needs to be less than 20.   
  • Read labels ,   Things you would never dream that there was sugar in, have sugar.   
  • Catsup has sugar, sometimes HFCS thatnis exceptionally bad.  Now they are calling it natural sugar in some cases.   
  •  Peanut butter has sugar and so does Nutella.   Read labels, so,e have less hydrogenated oil and sugar than others,   The ingredients are listed in order of volume.    

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Wednesday : the ads 4/5

Shank ham .98
Spiral ham 1.37

Fruit sale .88
Bell peppers, red and orange
Tomatoes on the vine

Black or blue berries 3.99
Strawberries 2.88
Cheese 4.99-2 lbs
Eggs .78@@

Boneless skinless chicken breast 8.00 BOGO - not a bargain

18 Ct eggs 2/3 - cheaper at Alberways

Buy six, save three - net prices
Milk .99
Ritz 1.88.
Ragu pasta 199$$?
Kens dressing 1.99$$?

Blackberries 2/4
Green beans 1.79

Red Barron pizza 3/7.99
Campbells cream soups buy 2 get one limit 2 free net .66 a can

Tuesday Talk

 This weekend I purchased a book from the dollar store  titled "salt sugar fat". It was written by Michael Moss.  It is about a secret Meeting between the major food producers about lowering the salt, sugar, fat in processed foods.    It was hosted by Pillsbury,    It is interesting to note that General Mills has since bought out Pillsbury.  

It has been estimated that during a year the average American eats seventy pounds of sugar , that equates to 22 teaspoons a day and twice the RDA of salt a day,   Most of the salt is not consumed by using a salt shaker.   Basically, it is hidden on processed foods.    The more things you can cook from scratch, the more control you have of the salt, , sugar and fat on your diet.  

Salt sugar and fat contribute to heart disease and obesity.   Before we go on diets to eliminate whole food groups, we can take baby steps on eliminating a lot of salt, sugar and fat on our diets.   It's an easy way to eat more healthy and spend spend less on our foods.   Rarely does a ready made food cost less than scratch,   Pasta sauce is about the only thing that is truly cheaper and you can watch the ingredients and use coupons,   Tortillas have fat whether  you make them or buy them.  

This is an interesting book that goes into the natural tendencies to crave salt, sugar and fat and howmdood manufactirers relate to that concept.    It's a good read.  

Bottom line : encouraging children to make healthy choices and limiting sweets or making them yourself with less sugar is a good thing,   This blog has been developing easy, quick, scratch recipes to make scratch food as easy as using a box.    Controlled far,mskgar, and salt and less money is a winning combination.  

Monday, April 3, 2017

Kitchen management

Time to take a different look at kitchen management.   I'm on a mission to find ways to cut the budget.   It's a challenge and I'm always up for a new challenge. Keeping your creative spirit and learning new things is what keeps us young. Being in a mission to try a new dinner a week to shake things up and keep meals from becoming boring .  

We have had a food saver for years.    We have had a dehydrated for years.   This weekend we got some quart canning jars. Lately, we have only used the dehydrater for making beef jerkey,    I have been dehydrating eggs while they are a dollar.    Some time during the year they have been known to be upwards of two dollars.    Still a good protein bargain, but keeping a stable dollar a dozen is better.  
I also dehydrated carrots 🥕 and celery because it was still good , but approaching  past  prime time!  

I got four split chicken breasts for 1.29 a pound and de- boned them, cooking the bones for stock and meat and freezing the breasts.  I used some dehydrated carrots and celery to make the stock,   The carrot coins re- hydrated  and you would never know they had been dehydrated.  

Prep work for this weeks kitchen management - motivational Monday

  • Make bread from dough in fridge: make new dough 
  • Clean vegetable and meat compartment 
  • De hydrate anything in abundance.  
  • Make rice the day of the enchaladas and plan the cream of chicken for the next day,   
  • Plan to use the leftover taco meat tonight firneither baked ziti or impossible pie 
  • Wash the kitchen floor 
  • Suck the jars of dehydrated vegetables and eggs.   
  • Post the Fred Meyer slip in the food spread sheet,   
  • Mark the meal plan and things to use up list in the white board.   

Prepping , stair stepping, and starting the week organized goes a long ways to make meals quick and easy and still keep a small budget together.   

Sunday, April 2, 2017

FM Haul

We went FM .  Total spent 37.06 minis tissue is (2.20) equals 34.86.  
We are under budget  and have a months worth of some dairy . And stock chicken breasts .  

Yoplait, including chocolate .23 using coupons
Eggs .99
Blue bunny 2.75 inckuding coupons
Lunch meat 2.50
Cheese 2.50 lb
2 lbs strawberries 2.99
4. chicken  breasts, 1.29 lb was 5.93
Large cottage cheese and sour cream 1.88
Cream cheese .99
Large English muffins 1.67

Meal plans

This  week I tried to add different meals so we are not on a complete rut.   I have an abundance of pasta sauce and enchalada sauce purchased  for a dime .    I looked to pinterest for inspiration and the first recipe was found on Pinterest.  

  • No roll Mexican rice enchaladas - lettuce and tomato 🍅 
  • Pizza 
  • Baked ziti, salad 
  • Impossible vegetable pie 
  • Creamed chicken on rice 
  • Fish packets : fish, rice, broccoli 
  • Breakfast 4 dinner : French toast , fruit, bacon 

Notes : We bought jasmine rice to try .  It's about ten cents a serving vs three cents a serving,    This is a good week for comparison.   Yesterday I made blueberry white chocolate chip  muffins.  I made muffin mix from scratch from Taste of Home.   The list a lot of variations.  I have written for Taste of Home in the past and their recipes are usually very good and down to earth,    I use Betty crickermfir another source.   Last week we got breadmfor 2/1; this is the reason we are having French toast for our breakfast for dinner.   Eggs are a dollar at Fred Meyer this week.    

I got wide mouth canning cars yesterday.   Target was the cheapest I could find.  I have a wide mouth vacuume sealer.  I have been dehydrating foods as I see that they may be in need of preserving.   Today , we are dehydrating eggs.    

Saturday, April 1, 2017

Fred Meyers ad for tomorrow

note  : tomorrow's ad

Four day sale SMTW

Kroger cheese -8 ounces - 2/5 -
Yoplait 3/1 -limit 6 - coupons for .50 off five  on the internet net .23 ea when you buy 5 .
Cream cheese .99
Sour cream or cottage cheese 1.88

Regular sale

Eggs .99
Strawberries 2.99
Radishes/green onions 2/.99

FF split chicken breast 1.29

My pick for rotation would be the chicken breast.   It's real easy to cut the rib portion off and you have the benefit of chicken stock and chicken bits for another recipe.

Friday, March 31, 2017

Quarterly recap and Winco haul

Our quarterly spreadsheet is done for the first quarter of 2017.  We spent a total of 55.24 a week on food for three of us -- total including stock.  Total spent minus stock was 40.16.  The USDA total for us is 113.19.   We are sitting at a lot less than fifty percent.    Even stocking, we are less than fifty percent.

Winco haul formday was a quick fill in,

  •  Green chillis - .58 farmcheaoer than the name brands 
  • Eggs (1.18 ez) 
  • Celery .98
  • 2 Chinese entrees 4.56 minis 100 coupon (lunch out ) 
  • 2 lbs carrots .98
  • Bricolli , fresh 3.98
  • 5 yogurt at .58 less .50 coupon 
  • Total 14.12.  

Friday recipe day

Today is Friday recipe day.    This week we had Buffalo Chicken Pizza.  It's a blue cheese lovers delight, but if you don't like blue cheese, it can be left out and substituted.    I think everyone knows how to build a pizza.so I will just list the ingredients,

  1. Homemade pizza crust: ours is 2 cups flour, 1-1/2 tsp yeast, 3/4 tsp salt, and 3/4 cup of WARM water with 2 teaspoons of olive oil.   Process flour to mix, add water and oil through the tube until dough forms a ball.   Take out of processed and flatten on a floured surface.   You can use a rolling pin, or just your hands,   We make a rectangle because   it's easier.  Bake at 450 for about 8 minutes,   You are looking for a somewhat cooked bottom crust.    
  2. Take out of oven and fill the crust.    
  3. Spread with blue cheese dressing 
  4. Place cooked , small diced chicken on a bowl and toss it with hot sauce to your "hit" liking 
  5. Place chicken on crust
  6. Next, sweet red pepper chunks 
  7. Blue cheese.  We add some motts and parm to neutralize the pungent taste of the blue cheese.   
  8. Finish baking off the pizza an additional five or so minutes until thecheese is melted and the bottom is browned and crusty.   

Alternative would use mild red pepper sauce, skip the blue cheese and use ranch dressing,  

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Bullet day : five easy foil pack dinners

Foil Paxk  dinners aren't new.   They are sooo old that I have a readers digest cookbook on them from the 70s.    They are a hit because there is almost no cleanup, the kids think ot hobo food, and you can adjust search persons packet for their taste.  If hubby doesn't like mushrooms, you can leave them off his- all the more for you, right! Lol.

The basics are for all recipes.    Use a square of foil large enough to wear the portion and seal well.
Spray or grease the foil. If cooking in foil bothers you, you can line the foil with parchment ,   Most of the time , you place the meat or protein down first and add a starch and veggie on top.   Seal the foil and place on cookie sheet to bake in oven, or you can cook it  on the grill.  

  1. Layer 1/2 cup of COOKED rice 🍚, a serving of white fish , salt and pepper, and fresh green beans,   Bake at 400 for 30 minutes .  Test fish for doneness .
  2. Bread stuffing leftover or prepared mix with  drained can of diced tomatoes added.   boneless  chicken breast or part of one, basil and some grated cheese.   Bake at 400 for 30 minutes test chicken for doneness.   ( temp and no longer pink. ) 
  3. Bread stuffing leftover or prepared , boneless chicken breast , brocolli, cheese, bacon,  ranch dressing,   400 degrees -30 minutes 
  4.  Cube raw chicken breast, cubes of red and green peppers, pineapple chunks,  toss with  a teriyaki sauce.  Place cooked rice on bottom, add portion of meat mixture, and seal.    400 degrees for 30-35 minites, test for doneness,   
  5. Prepare ground meat patties with  the lowest fat ground beef, Half a can of green chillis, grated cheese,   and taco seasoning to taste.  Place on bottom of foil.   Mix can or frozen corn 🌽 with the rest of the can   if chillis.    Bake at 450 degrees for 30-35 minutes or until meat is done.   It will depend on the thickness of the patty. 

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

The ads - Alberways?

QFC s ad last week was a two week ad.  

Alberways ( a combination of Safeways and Albertsons: their ads are identical.   )

Halos 299$$
7 percent ground beef
Milk - regular or chocolate 1.79@@

Not much there .  My rotation protein would be the 7 percent hamburger.  

Other notes :
I had a bunch of carrots,   I dried three pounds of carrots and now have a quart deli container of carrots.  Drying veggies can preserve food before it goes bad and frees up freezer space,    We have been working on depleating the freezer.  

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Idea day:'doctor 's orders diets and budget constraints.

Often these days, doctors are finding things we are essentially allergic to -- foods or food groups that our bodies don't take kindly to.  

Some doctors think  it is because foods weren't introduced to children early enough and their bodies didn't get acclimated to them.   Some things are easy to change a diet to accommodate.    Like eliminating entire food groups, not so much. And, doing it on a strict midget may,not be quite so was either.

In general, special equates to dollar signs.   I'm not a nutritionist, these are my observations.  Before you start any diet, consult your nutrition expert   ,  these are just thoughts on finding low cost specialty foods.  .

All of us should avoid too much sugar, salt, saturated fats, HFCS, and trans fats: hydrogenated oils.
I work hard to buy good oils to cook with  and lean cuts of meat.   Avoid salt and too much sugar.

But, what about lactose intolerant, gluten free, diabetic diets.

Diabetic is the one of those that I can identify with.  It's pretty easy  and really you only have to eliminate a lot of sugar and starch,   You can't give it up altogether, but you can count your carbs and measure your portions. mostly I drink black coffee, black tea, or water.   As with any diet, generally,  fiber is good.

Lactose intolerant or non dairy is harder.   Some use sky  milk or almond milk.   Grocery outlet carries that at a lower price.    As with  any food, knowing it  takes a little shopping, but once you discover the store that has typically the lowest price, you have it made.  You still have to have a heads up because things change.  It used to be coffee was cheapest at grocery outlet. It's not anymore.   I just check every time I shop.   It's a quick glance.   Cheese can be made from chickpeas,, I'm told.   I did read in passing that there was an additive that compensated for the lactose,   I would check with your nutrition expert.   .

Gluten free is another diet that can be pricey.   There are other grains that can be made into flour,   It might lay to grind your own.   Rode is a good alternative.   Some specialty foods are actually cheaper at PCC and central market because they sell more of them.  Some "special" stores have a 42 percent mark up.  That's huge,

Living on a dime is a web site that addresses the gluten free does because she is on one for CFS. April  Holly Smith has a u tube channel and she is dairy free.

I have found that food prices vary dramatically in different parts of the country,   Some of it, like fresh produce  I get, some things are generic and, frankly, I think it's a matter of what the traffic will bear.   I see no reason why ground turkey should be a dollar some places and almost five others for the same brand.  When turkey is more expensive than ground beef for the same fat content, it doesn't make sense.  Beef has more iron.  

You can cut costs on a specialty diet by shopping for the best prices and eliminating the food altogether. When  eliminating a food group, you need to consult a nutritionalist  to find the foods you need to add to your diet to compensate.