Category: Family

Frugal cooking tips

frugal cooking tips

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Pour over your spuds, then add grated cheese to cover. Frugal cooking tips as it is or, ideally, with a cookinh vegetable. I have made this in my coking cooker, which rips more economical to run.

I add the cheese for the last 20 minutes or frubal. You can make it really cheaply by using a packet sauce, stirring coojing into cookinv macaroni or any cookinf and topping with frugal cooking tips grated cheddar, browned under the grill. Because they have coooking a strong flavour, a can of sardines in tomato sauce is lovely mixed with hot spaghetti.

Add some of the pasta water to loosen it a bit. If you have a pepper, fry that up and add it too. It may be a bit of a stretch to call this a pie, but it goes down a treat with some baked beans!

Cook and mash as many potatoes as you think you will need, and mix in some fried onions. If you have any leftover cooked veg, that can go in too. Grate some cheddar and mix half in with the mash and put the other half on top. Bake for about 20 minutes.

Very similar to the dish above. Yes, there is a theme developing! Mix a can of tuna in with some mashed potatoes and fried onions.

Top with cheese if you have some and brown under the grill. Eggs make a cheap meal, and omelettes are a super quick and easy way to eat them. Add thinly sliced cooked potato, peppers, peas, cheese, mushrooms, canned sweetcorn — whatever you have to hand.

Fry some onions and garlic for five minutes, then add any other veg you have available. Throw in a can of chickpeas, a can of tomatoes and some seasoning and cook for 20 minutes to combine the flavours.

Serve with rice, pasta, potatoes or bread. I regularly add cooked spinach or tinned potatoes to make it more substantial.

My recipe is here. This is an old one, from my copy of a s frugal cook book called the Goode Kitchen, by Shirley Goode. If you ever see this second hand, I heartily recommend you purchase it. Parboil the rice for 5 minutes, drain, then return to the pan. Add the tuna and the soup, then the peas.

Bring to the boil and simmer until all of the liquid has been absorbed about 10 minutes. Season and serve. If you have a family, it is worth buying your spuds from the farm shop in sacks, so that you can pull out the larger ones for baking.

Pretty much anything is good as a topping: cheese, tuna, baked beans, leftover chilli, bolognese or any kind of casserole. You could add cheese and sweet corn to this basic meal if you have them.

Season well with black pepper and mixed dried herbs. Make a tin of baked beans more interesting by adding 1 tsp of curry powder and a tablespoon of raisins as you heat them through.

You could also fry an onion and garlic and mix them in too. Serve with some crusty bread or on toast. I deliberately make too much rice when I am cooking some, so that I can make the leftovers into egg fried rice.

Chop up a small onion and fry in some oil for five minutes. Add the cooked rice — about g is enough for two people — and fry a further five minutes. Add a little more oil and two beaten eggs. Allow to set for a minute and then stir vigorously.

We enjoy this with a simple stir fry of whatever veg needs using up, soy sauce and some vegetable stock. Dumplings are great for filling you up an, when you are aiming for a cheap meal, vegetable stew is a cheaper option than meat.

Add some pulses to your stew to make it more substantial. This is a good basic dumplings recipe. People baulk at the idea of eating offal these days. However, meat such as kidneys and liver are still very cheap in comparison to muscle meat.

So perhaps now is the time to try a liver and bacon recipe, such as this one from the Hairy Bikers. The price of sausages varies, depending on the quality.

Personally, I would rather have a couple of decent, meaty sausages than three or four cheap ones that taste like mush.

Therefore, it makes sense to stretch sausages with other cheaper ingredients, like pulses and vegetables. Chop up an onion and some garlic and to it add a can of tomatoes and about g cooked green lentils, along with some seasoning.

Brown the sausages separately, then combine and cook for around half an hour. Cook some pasta and drain, add a can or two of tuna, depending on how many people you are cooking for, a small can of sweetcorn and a large dollop of mayonnaise.

Stir well and serve. Pancakes are a great way to use up the flour that many of us seem to have lurking in our cupboards. How about filling them with cooked spinach or leeks and grated cheese? Or chopped ham and sweetcorn? Cheap and filling. A really quick and easy veggie meal is chilli beans and rice.

This can be made with a can of three bean chilli mixed with some tinned tomatoes. Kippers are very inexpensive, as well as being a good source of healthy omega fats. They are delicious with rice, and I frequently make a kind of kipper kedgeree.

I base it along the lines of this James Martin onebut without the double cream! I hope you like my ideas for extremely frugal food. What cheap food do you eat when you are short of money? Shirley goode died a few years ago. I always like getting new frugal recipes. All are great for using up bits of leftovers.

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: Frugal cooking tips

Frugal Meals that are Actually Super Delicious

The great thing about soup is that you can make it out of pretty much anything! It offers an opportunity to use up all of the odds and ends that are sitting in your fridge, such as tired looking celery and carrots. Leftover meat and veg can also be added.

I have also been known to throw in wilted salad. Once it is whizzed up, no one knows! An ideal base for your soup is onions, chopped potatoes and stock. You can leave the potatoes out and add pasta or rice later to make it more hearty. Then just thrown anything else in that you have to hand.

Either chop it up small for a chunky soup or, if you prefer a smooth soup and have a hand blender, you can whizz it up. With soup making in mind, keep your vegetable trimmings to make stock , and you can do the same with poultry carcasses and bones.

You can do a lot with the humble potato. Try slicing four medium spuds as thinly as you can then add a layer to a greased baking dish. Dot with butter or margarine, add salt and pepper and a small amount of fresh or powdered garlic. Continue to add layers of the potato, seasoning in the same way until you have used them all.

Dissolve a stock cube in a small amount of water and add milk to make about half a pint of liquid ml. Pour over your spuds, then add grated cheese to cover. Eat as it is or, ideally, with a green vegetable. I have made this in my slow cooker, which is more economical to run. I add the cheese for the last 20 minutes or so.

You can make it really cheaply by using a packet sauce, stirring it into your macaroni or any pasta and topping with extra grated cheddar, browned under the grill.

Because they have such a strong flavour, a can of sardines in tomato sauce is lovely mixed with hot spaghetti. Add some of the pasta water to loosen it a bit. If you have a pepper, fry that up and add it too. It may be a bit of a stretch to call this a pie, but it goes down a treat with some baked beans!

Cook and mash as many potatoes as you think you will need, and mix in some fried onions. If you have any leftover cooked veg, that can go in too. Grate some cheddar and mix half in with the mash and put the other half on top. Bake for about 20 minutes.

Very similar to the dish above. Yes, there is a theme developing! Mix a can of tuna in with some mashed potatoes and fried onions. Top with cheese if you have some and brown under the grill. Eggs make a cheap meal, and omelettes are a super quick and easy way to eat them.

Add thinly sliced cooked potato, peppers, peas, cheese, mushrooms, canned sweetcorn — whatever you have to hand. Fry some onions and garlic for five minutes, then add any other veg you have available.

Throw in a can of chickpeas, a can of tomatoes and some seasoning and cook for 20 minutes to combine the flavours. Serve with rice, pasta, potatoes or bread. I regularly add cooked spinach or tinned potatoes to make it more substantial.

My recipe is here. This is an old one, from my copy of a s frugal cook book called the Goode Kitchen, by Shirley Goode. If you ever see this second hand, I heartily recommend you purchase it.

Parboil the rice for 5 minutes, drain, then return to the pan. Add the tuna and the soup, then the peas. Bring to the boil and simmer until all of the liquid has been absorbed about 10 minutes. Season and serve. If you have a family, it is worth buying your spuds from the farm shop in sacks, so that you can pull out the larger ones for baking.

Pretty much anything is good as a topping: cheese, tuna, baked beans, leftover chilli, bolognese or any kind of casserole. You could add cheese and sweet corn to this basic meal if you have them. Season well with black pepper and mixed dried herbs.

Make a tin of baked beans more interesting by adding 1 tsp of curry powder and a tablespoon of raisins as you heat them through. You could also fry an onion and garlic and mix them in too. Serve with some crusty bread or on toast. I deliberately make too much rice when I am cooking some, so that I can make the leftovers into egg fried rice.

Chop up a small onion and fry in some oil for five minutes. I know, I know — as someone who loves to try new recipes on the regular, I know that this one sounds like a drag.

But hear me out. Because the truth is: each new recipe I and you try, I generally have to buy at least one, if not three, obscure ingredients that I have no other use for…besides this recipe.

SO, I started freezing the rest of that one-off ingredient in a single-use portion the specific measured amount needed for that recipe on the top shelf of my freezer. I use one of those soda-can clear containers to collect all the small bags of half-used ingredients.

Right now, that shelf has a half-used can of chipotle adobo peppers, measured out in 1 tbsp. portions, a half-can of black beans, ½ cup of carrot juice that I use in a homemade dressing, etc.

Your freezer is not just to freeze meals. Learn from my own mistakes and start saving both time and money by freezing single portions of an ingredient to use. Psst: check out my freezer tip in the article how to save money on snacks. There are so many ways to jazz up, dress down, and otherwise reuse leftovers that I devoted an entire article on how to reuse leftovers.

Here are pantry challenge tips ideas and rules. Frozen fruits and vegetables are frozen quickly after their peak ripeness , so most retain most if not all of their nutritional value. Not only that, but you waste far less from the veggie drawer, since they keep for months at a time.

Have you ever thought about how expensive a bottle of spice or a seasoning is? Then, when your bottle expires, bring out small portions at a time. My final frugal cooking tip — when one or several ingredients for a specific meal you like to make go on sale, buy enough to make two of that meal.

Start incorporating them into your daily kitchen use…and your grocery bill will creep down, down, and down some more. How satisfying! The following two tabs change content below. Bio Latest Posts. Amanda L Grossman Personal Finance Writer and CEO at Frugal Confessions, LLC.

Amanda L. Grossman is a writer and Certified Financial Education Instructor, Plutus Foundation Grant Recipient, and founder of Frugal Confessions.

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One of my best frugal cooking tips: change your thinking. Instead of looking at each meal individually, think about cooking a base that you can use in many of the same meals over the coming weeks. One of the best bases, of course, is the baked chicken.

Bake a chicken or pick up one if you can find it cheaply , and use it to make chicken enchiladas, chicken BBQ pizza, hot chicken sandwiches, etc. Most of us are not going to take the time to create a grocery store price book.

Not only that, but food prices are changing increasing so much right now, that it seems like wasted effort. Instead, you need to be strategic with pricing out the most used ingredients in your kitchen. This will really make a difference. Write these down on a list.

Then, take the time to find the cheapest way to source these ingredients. Bonus tip: Not only do you want to source these specific ingredients as cheaply as possible, but you want to then make the recipes that use these ingredients, as often as your family can stand it.

My husband and I — proud parents of a child with food sensory issues — have found that the best way to get a child interested in eating what you have to offer is letting them help you cook it. Kids also love to brainstorm ideas blue spaghetti, anyone? Expired and expiring foods is the arch nemesis as my younger brother used to say of running a frugal kitchen.

Psst: these free kitchen inventory printable sheets will help. I know, I know — as someone who loves to try new recipes on the regular, I know that this one sounds like a drag.

But cheaper than buying a squash, letting it rot and ordering delivery instead 😉. Chopped frozen butternut squash is one of the few things that I will pay extra for the convenience of!

I absolutely hate chopping butternut squash too, so I cut it in half, clean out the gunk, and roast it cut side down on a baking tray with a bit of oil. If your microwave is large enough, you can also cook butternut there. Pierce the skin in several place, then nuke on high for about 5min.

Start checking every minute or so after that. Butternut freezes well though. Jamie Oliver never peels butternut squash. Once I saw him cook it with the peel on, I never went back.

Peel almost melts away and there is no taste of it. That, plus a clean kitchen towel to grasp the slippery gord, makes the job so much easier.

At home I have salad dressing and veggie boullion. That all becomes soup, salad and bread. This is so, so true Stefanie!

For example, I find that when I keep those huge bags of pre-cut frozen veggies in the freezer, I eat 9 different vegetables before noon seriously, I did it yesterday!

Things have changed for me, frugality-wise, in different seasons of life. Frugalwoods is a young mom of one. I am an older mom with 7 yep, s-e-v-e-n kids, and we homeschool, and I run two blogs, and hubby runs a business, and… my energy at 41 is more precious. I used to struggle with this until I learnt to put the whole squash into the oven and bake it, then chop when it cools 🙂.

I also hate chopping squash and it can be very hard indeed. I cook it whole in the oven and then scoop it out. Also same for pumpkin, except with next step to get the seeds, and roast them after. Totally, me too.

I cannot bear the prep. I know you can skin and chop and de-seed yourself, but even the thought makes me need to lie down quietly!

If you ever need smooth cooked butternut squash versus chopped browned squares which sometimes you need , you can cook the entire butternut in a crockpot. Stab with some holes, add 2 cups of water and cook it whole 8 hours on Low.

Let it cool in the fridge before you slice it open, and you have magical squash puree without giving yourself a hernia! For any squash place in the crockpot with a small bath of water. Cook on high for about 4hrs. The skin will slide off and your squash will melt off the fork.

No more cutting your hands off trying to get into the shell. Works every time. Just a note on tahini; a little bit of peanut butter makes a fine tahini substitute when making homemade hummus 🙂 Love your blog! Great tip!

I made homemade humous once I really hated it. Perhaps this will be better? Same goes for open packets — like yogurt, cream, meat etc. Also rice is such a high risk food that you should only keep it in the fridge for 1 day and you have to be super, super careful if you are planning to re-heat it.

Stay safe people, if in doubt — throw it out. Your health is worth more than a little bit of money! What I find is that most food expiration dates are remarkably conservative. I tackle this very topic in greater depth in this post: How I Fight Food Waste At Thanksgiving And Beyond.

I wonder if our dairy products are more pasteurized than yours because neither product would go bad in a properly cold fridge in 3 days. Also not sure where the rice fear comes from. We do this all the time,. Now if it was rice leftover from a restaurant…probably not. A big yogurt pot once open can happily sit in my fridge 10 days.

Use clean spoon to serve from pot, keep refrigerated, no problem. Milk in my experience lasts 5 to 9 days once open fresh, pasteurised, not UHT. PSs just to add..

I make a batch of rice and eat on it for a week. I have never been sick while eating rice….. I am Southern, and I sometimes eat the greens with cornbread, but rice works also. The rice is really good soaked in the pot likker. I add the pepper sauce which is hot peppers in a vinegar sauce.

Pinto beans and a slice of raw onion with sea salt on top make for a fine meal. I think health and safety culture does have a lot going for it certainly, but the nannying endless food policing is insane.

I found that hummus is one of those foods for which you must acquire a taste. I started eating it when my parents lived in Saudi Arabia and it was novel to Westerners.

Then I worked with a group of people who were from the Middle East, and hummus was their favorite dish. That was back in the 60s and 70s before it became a popular item in the United States.

I make my own hummus, and adjust the seasonings for my taste. You might try making a batch and adjust the garlic, oil, salt to your preference. If there is no mold on it it is safe to eat. Rice — That is a misunderstanding between two issues. There is a bacteria that loves rice that has a poisonous byproduct.

Therefore even if you re-heat it and kill the bacteria the byproduct remains and can make you quite ill. It is only an issue for rice that is left out. Why am I not dead yet? I also cook for the week and eat off of it.

And if it goes past five days the dog eats it. Once again just goes to show that I expose my body to enough bad stuff that I never get sick!

Rice is a high risk food? When I was young I lived and worked in the amazon with no refrigeration whatsoever and some hot and humid weather. We often had rice and beans for dinner and then packed them up to carrry with us for lunch the next day. I did find that I had to eat the beans by 10 am or they start to go off, but I never knew the rice to be a problem.

Thank you for this! I made hummus yesterday and we were out of tahini, so I subbed peanut butter. We liked it even better. I will never buy tahini again! Leanne is a nutritionist. Leanne also gets it about making sure dinner is on the table in minutes. The recipes are flavorful and made with stuff you can easily find in the supermarket.

Also guilty of letting our 4 kids become too picky with their food, which resulted in too much waste 🙁. Ty, I get jealous when reading how cheap produce an other items are cheaper in other areas of the country.

I have even noticed the Kroger affiliates here PNW are more expensive than say Arizona or even California. My daughter has bball practice in the central district and the least expensive fruit and veggies stand is a block from her school.

But then, so does housing or land. Mixed blessing, that! Frugalwoods, you answered my question about the oats, thank you, I am so happy!! How do you store them?

Hi Amy! Awesome post, Mrs. I totally agree that kids throw everything for a loop, haha! Super easy and it gets our day off to a healthy start! We use OJ as our base though you could use water , add in a banana, frozen pineapple chunks, blueberries, etc and then TONS of spinach or kale!

Our weakness is without a doubt coffee and dessert. We get Starbucks a few times per week; but our daughters will only nap in the car now they are 3 and 4! Love all your tips!!! This week I made vegan sweet potato and black bean enchiladas that were amazing; and then made spicy potato and black bean burritos two nights later since they used the same ingredients!

You are totally right that black beans are a must; and every meal should begin by sauteing an onion! For example, I used to eat a Chipotle burrito bowl once or even twice a week. So I set out to master the best vegan burrito bowl I could.

The key to the rice is adding lime juice and a little olive oil. More recently, I had an amazing batch of vegan tacos featuring crispy smashed potatoes yum! So now I have a perfect topping for my burrito bowl. The next challenge still working on it is coming up with a tasty vegan substitute for Vietnamese rice noodle salad bowls.

I like your Chipotle hack. I did the same, but for us it was their barbacoa beef for burrito bowls. I located a great copycat recipe and every few months, if beef is affordable, I make a batch and freeze it in meal-size portions. Probably at least a year-and-a-half. will babywoods eat regular oatmeal?

Yes, she has regular oatmeal plus a banana for breakfast no sugar added! Looks weird, but she likes it that way :. Good luck! My other 3 kids love oatmeal, I do steel cut oats in the crockpot, so good! Food can be such a challenging aspect of frugality because there are so many emotional, family, and political elements tied up into how and what we eat.

I very much agree with other commenters who noted the importance of working with your habits. Neither of us enjoy cooking so more frequent simple meal planning to prevent the take-out meals is the next battle to fight!

Food is so cheap in the US, and the average family spends less of its income on food than ever, but housing costs have skyrocketed. My rent budget is five to ten times what my food budget is, and my income tax budget is three times that. If you live in the U. you might want to give TurboTax a try.

TurboTax knows about every tax deduction there is and can save you quite a bit on your income taxes when you file. Great post.

I am vegan so I chuckle at comments that a vegan diet is expensive. Like you point out, if you avoid the processed stuff and stick to whole foods then it can be crazy cheap! We do have slightly higher grocery bills because we balance shopping for a committed vegan me with my omni husband and kids.

The family eats lots of vegan dishes with the odd bit of meat served on the side to keep them happy. It works. As requested, this is a homemade vegan granola bar that we love. Here is a link to the recipe. She also has a blog which has some fantastic and freely shared recipes if you google her name for those looking for recipes.

Like you I am an avid hiker. I am in the process of completing the Bruce Trail in Ontario just shy of km. These bars, along with a pb and banana sandwich are my go to hiking snack.

Delicious recipes! Good, basic vegan food. This post is excellent! Thank you! We buy whole ingredients, waste almost nothing and bulk cook so we always have something to eat even if we are lazy.

Just ate NC pulled pork bbq last night. From the freezer! That will be pulled pork tacos for lunch today along with home cooked crock pot beans from the freezer of course. That was pretty much a perfect list. Whenever I get into discussions on MMM on how to eat frugally — often people are frustrated that they cannot get their bill as low as others.

I make many of those points. The big 3 for me: 1. What you eat. Paleo, Vegan, Omnivore, whatever — everyone has different needs I, for one, cannot maintain my weight at a healthy weight by eating a carb-heavy diet anymore.

So sad. Carbs are cheap. Where you shop. We have a couple of stores that have produce REALLY cheap, and we eat pounds per day. It adds up. Where you live. Some areas of the country are more expensive. Some towns do not have a lot of competition. I love your list. And I love that it sounds like you help people figure out what will work in THEIR situation — or at least to think about their own variables.

But I have found that roasted sweet potatoes are okay for me for whatever reason. I roast up a couple a week and eat those for breakfast.

I also throw them in soups. Ahhh food. Such an expensive thing, that. We have a few allergies, some of which we choose to buy our way out of and boy does it get expensive! My spouse eats one between work and squash, nights per week. My parents alive on green smoothies and they throw the Entire Bag of spinach straight I to the freezer when they get home from the store, then take what they want.

We buy the big bags of mixed greens — spinach, kale, etc. and the big size of broccoli at Costco and I blend it with some whey from my homemade yogurt and freeze it in cubes.

We throw them into our daily fruit smoothies. Now I keep some out to use fresh and freeze the rest. Eating in is just a matter of habit and practice. Cheapheart and I are in the food and wine business. There is absolutely no excuse not to learn to cook. There is an endless wealth of information about how cook anything and everything on the internet.

Serious Eats is a great resource. It is ready in half an hour. Cheapheart and I banged out a big pot of lentil, sausage and kale soup and a pot of tomato sauce and meatballs in a half an hour. Long ago, I gave Mr.

Cheapheart the gift of a pizza making class at the awesome King Arthur Flour Baking Center near you Frugalwoods! It was not cheap, but it was nice to spend time together away from the baby and learn something new.

Years of confidence in pizza making have certainly paid for that class many times over. The dough takes 5 mins to asssemble and 45 minutes in the bread machine unstylish and very useful appliance, buy one used, people are always getting rid of them. Tastes way better, and is healthier and cheaper than delivery, plus the pride of doing it yourself is the best part!

I have been encouraged to embrace them by two women I admire. You can assemble a loaf in10 minutes. Takes hours of bread machine magic for a nice loaf of tasty homemade bread at a fraction of the cost.

Once you become accustomed to eating homemade bread, the stuff out of the bag is pretty appalling. Better, healthier, cheaper. I recommend the Panasonic YD, look on Craigslist or eBay. Yogurt is another easy thing to make that is just a matter of practice, a million recipes on the internet and no special equipment required other than maybe a thermometer.

For the price of a half gallon of milk I can have a half gallon of yogurt for 10 minutes active time. Plus no stabilizers and gums. Better, healthier, cheaper, pride! For better nutrition and even more savings, have you considered milling your own flour?

Most modern whole wheat flour is actually white flour with the germ added back later. Is that a challenge snowcanyon? When I lived in the city I did not have this option!

King Arthur has a great website and they are customer-friendly, but their flour is mass-market and not particularly good, nor do they have all the varieties necessary for classic European-style unsweetened whole-wheat bread. You can mill flour in one minute in a vitamix! I will give it a try for sure.

KAF has a beautiful teaching facility in Vermont that offers lots of great classes with state of the art equipment. I was just planning to mention that King Arthur chewy granola bars are the best. I make them weekly. It calls for cups fruit and nuts, any combo, so it is good for remnants of bulk purchases.

I LOVE King Arthur Flour recipes, so this sounds great! And in a frugal win- we got our bread machine for free when a family member was moving.

If you can make split pea soup, you can make lentil. The primary difference is you WANT to cook the peas into oblivion, with lentils you generally want them to retain their shape.

We love both. Leftovers are great. Random bits of leftover veggies can go into either. A dollop of sour cream or yogurt on top makes it seem more special, or a very little sherry. Homemade pizza can also accommodate bits of leftovers. Top with pizza-type toppings and heat in the oven. Sounds fancy.

Pasta, veggies, and a sprinkle of parmesan, a little pepper. Can be hot or cold. Warming even slightly may be preferable to stone cold out of the fridge.

This means you also get less added sugar. Frozen veggies when on sale can be a great find, especially for things not seasonal or not readily available in your area. I like to cook dry beans for chili. So cook a batch of beans pinto or kidney , make some into chili, the rest into refried beans.

Both freeze beautifully. Explore vegetarian and vegan recipes to cut down on meat consumption. Find something else. I really appreciate your note at the top about being sure to find your food priorities and then figure out how to frugalize is that a word?

We try really hard to buy organic and to be frugal. Even that though has changed our habits to encourage frugality. I follow many of the tips you gave, already, but somehow, seeing it in plain writing makes it impressed upon me to really watch how and what I buy.

I know I can still reduce our food budget if I think more strategically. Thanks for the encouragement and reminders! I work outside the home, full-time, so I do this on weekends or evenings — it can be done! I second your comments about coupons. The only exceptions to that will likely be from a local market.

Kroger or Giant Eagle central Ohio will sometimes have coupons in the paper or their mailings for their house brand products usually a good deal , or occasionally for produce. Favorite go to meal during the week is garlic, onions, tomatoes, rice,shaved carrots, and jalepenoes.

I throw in sweet red peppers and sometimes left over chicken. Saute in some olive oil and yummy. Babywoods is so darling! Thank you very much for the list! May I ask how long do you store the homemade food in the freezer and at what tempetature?

We have a small freezer inside the refridgerator, not a separate freezer, and I am not how long cooked food will be good there. How long do you store food soups, lunches in the usual fridge and at what temperature?

Do you maybe know if there are any safety rules in this respect? Thank you very much! Food stored below freezing will stay safe indefinitely, as bacteria cannot grow in freezing temperatures. I finally feel very secure in feeding my family and myself… it only took 10 years of trial and error!

I have also learned about cutting down food waste by going through my kitchen once a week and putting stuff on the counter that needs to be used up… right now I have corn meal, a can of cream of chicken, a can of cream of mushroom, fried onions, apricot preserves and pie crust mix… all items gifted to me by my Buy Nothing Group.

I make it a point to collect unwanted food items from my BN community and then build recipes around them. Last week we had salmon cakes and pumpkin pie because of my BN gifts.

My food bill is still not as cheap as others, but I think it has to do with geography. In general living on the west coast means that our costs are higher. and you can sub different types of flour and mix-ins nuts, seeds, etc. Our biggest foods savings, besides raising some vegetables and chickens in the summer, comes from eating bone-in chicken.

I agree that being judicious about your proteins can make a huge difference. Love the tips! We use most for our family of five healthy eaters—buy bulk raw ingredients, add beans and onions to everything to stretch it, slow cooker soups and stews, planned leftover meals, etc.

We also finally invested in a pressure cooker, which is proving to be a game changer! Less temptation to give into take out or eat through our entire stash of freezer meals when you can cook beans in 30 min or frozen chicken in 10! We used to do more of our meal prep on weekends, but as the kids get older and have more activities popping up on weekends, it was getting hard to keep up with the prep.

Our other strategy is frittatas of every variety. Do you make it in a high speed blender like a Vitamix? I never enjoyed homemade hummus made in the food processor, but in the Vitamix or other comparable one the texture is so much smoother. We bought canned beans from target most recently and they were super firm and make very chunky hummus.

If you cook your own garbanzo beans, you can make sure to get them thoroughly softened first. Are you using dried chickpeas?

which I personally think is superior Is your water hard? Our new house has very hard water so I now use distilled water to cook my chickpeas and other beans.

It makes a big difference with the texture of the chickpeas. I suffered though a year of horrible beans before I discovered water can make or break your beans and it is definitely worth the extra dollar for distilled water.

I tried those once with no luck, so I went back to canned, though that may have been at my old apartment which had really hard water…. I may get some dried ones though and try out the crockpot method of soaking. Dumber people than I have mastered homemade hummus! Otherwise, make sure you blend, blend, blend.

I use a Cuisnart as well — it should get fluffy. Make sure you have a little lemon juice in there. Great post! If you want to get all fancy with your hummus because I like the taste the tahini adds to it , you can always make it yourself. And the bonus is that you can also use the sesame seeds for your homemade breads which we do quite a lot.

We fed our Demon Child the same way and I can report, three years on, that she is willing to eat just about anything. The kid asks for snacks of broccoli and fourth helpings of beans! but she eats it just fine. Thank you for sharing! FW will have her in the kitchen with him as soon as possible!

Hey guys! It just might be my all time favorite tv show! Just wanted to share the link for my favorite granola bar recipe. One thing that has helped us consume more of our leftovers is packaging them in individual serving size containers.

Then, when we need to grab food for lunch or dinner, we can just grab a meal out of the refrigerator and warm it up. The book itself is available at our library. As someone who lives in a city with limited grocery stores but TONS of restaurants I have had to work on this- especially since I have a LOT of severe food allergies one epipen or ER visit is definitely more than my grocery bill!

so I have to be careful of what I eat. I love making soup from scratch and taking it to work, and buying basics rather than premade food.

I also do use coupons a few times a year when I know basics like tp, paper towels, shampoo, etc will be on sale. Also, befriend your local butcher! Easy protein source. Great list of tips and resources! Thanks again for always impressing!

A big key for me has been to reduce the thinking behind. well, everything. Every two weeks I put on a pot of dry beans to cook for two hours, and add seasonings and oil as they cook down.

Then I scoop out half cup portions into lunch containers, let them cool, add cheap bulk frozen veggies, and shove all ten plus containers back in the freezer.

At the beginning of every week, I portion out nuts in small containers for lunch, and oatmeal with cinnamon and chia and yogurt with honey for breakfast.

The savings in time, money, and stress have been terrific. All I have to do is fend off the folks who think eating beans and oatmeal every day reflect a serious lack of imagination. Great article! My approach is similar, but I have yet to give up the semi-weekly meal out at UNO or one of our local establishments.

You mentioned that you buy granola bars… I thought I would share this recipe for homemade granola bars , which I made recently and LOVED. I changed a few things around, like adding toasted sesame seeds, pecans, walnuts, and I used sliced, skinless almonds instead of whole ones.

Oh, and I added a tablespoon of butter and a little bit of salt to the mix. I toasted the oats and all the nuts first, which I think adds a nice flavor note. After cutting the bars, I kept them from sticking together by wrapping them in little pieces of waxed paper.

When I have had dinner failures…. hot sauce. We make what my husband calls salsa soup. Any bulk hot sauce you have can save a bad fish stew or similar.

I actually save up my scrap vegetables in a freezer bag in the freezer…when I have a couple full bags I make a batch of vegetable stock. Love this post and your blog. Do you ever buy Frugalhound treats? Or do you make them homemade? Dog treats are one of the food priorities in our house.

My mother grew up in wartime Europe and these were lessons necessary for life, not just lifestyle. We are currently working on less packaged food. More of a health choice than frugality actually. I will say you are lucky with your little ones eating habits.

My oldest daughter has always been a great eater. We are working with an occupational therapist to expand her horizons. Unfortunately feeding your kids is not always as straightforward as one might think.

I serve half for a meal, and freeze the other half to keep quick meals on-hand during busy times. Compare the price of a cake in the grocery store to the ingredients list for a homemade cake and you might be surprised!

Bake up extra cookies, brownies, or other goodies and freeze portions to have on hand to grab-and-go. Make up extra fruit pies from that in-season produce you bought. It only takes a few minutes to gather some ingredients, mix them up, and store them in a jar.

This seasoning-making activity is contagious! Breakfasts are perfect for this. Make up extra waffles or pancakes and freeze. Bake up a batch of mini frittatas or cook some breakfast tortillas to keep in the fridge for a quick breakfast.

Bake up a batch of homemade granola bars for snacking during the week. For lunches and dinners, a crockpot is your best friend. You can roast a chicken or other cuts of meat during the day and your meal is ready for supper. Soups and stews can simmer all day too. The cheapest way to buy chicken and turkey is as a whole bird.

This shortcut is even better if you grow your own! Learn to part-out the sections and freeze for different meals. Consider your favorite recipes and decide how many birds you need to process.

Cut up, package then freeze for your favorite meals. Try making bone broth or stock from the carcasses and giblets of roasted birds. Rendered fats are healthier than processed seed oils.

When I started introducing foods to my baby daughter, I was encouraged to use the baby foods in those tiny jars from the store. So, I made my own baby food by cooking our vegetables plain without seasonings and mashing them by hand. We also had plenty of home-canned apple sauce, and all my kids loved mashed bananas.

I got some good advice from experienced moms and was happy to be serving my babies quality foods I had made myself. Homemade fruit roll-ups, dried fruits, and jerky are some excellent snacks for your family.

Dried fruit snacks are a healthy way to take advantage of an abundance of produce. Good placement of tools and appliances, and a well-organized pantry will help you make efficient use of your time in the kitchen. In my house, I have four places to store food that I call my pantries: Dry Goods Pantry, Freezer, Refrigerator, Home-Canned Pantry.

I check them regularly using my Pantry Inventory Worksheets. In the dry goods pantry, keep stocked up on your basics such as grains and pastas, canned and boxed foods, and baking items like flour, sugar, baking soda, etc.

Make sure to organize by expiration date and check regularly. You can include your spices and seasonings in this category too, even if you keep them in a separate spice cupboard or drawer.

Many people buy or harvest their own partial cow or pig to have meat stored for many months. When I was growing up, my mom would send me downstairs to get something out of the deep freezer for supper like a bag of frozen strawberries, or maybe a cut of beef to thaw.

The refrigerator is a short-term pantry. Condiments such as mustard, sauces, jellies or pickles often sit for months in the fridge. For example, sometimes when meal-planning, knowing that you have too many bottles of salad dressing might prompt you to plan a salad for a meal.

Depending on how large your home-canned goods pantry is, you could keep your family fed easily for over a year! Everything from fruits, to veggies to soups and meats can be canned. Like I mentioned above, always shop your pantry when making a meal list. I was lucky enough to grow up having a root cellar.

Many foods can spoil over time like potatoes, onions, and squashes. Shop your root cellar often when planning meals. Just like your food, organizing your kitchen tools can save you time.

When everything is in the best place, you can quickly get your meals prepped and get on with your day. Simple things like oven mitts in the drawer next to the stove, all the baking tools in one area, and all the pots and pans near the stove, can make meal prep easier.

Although cliché, it holds true when being frugal in a kitchen. Save time looking for your favorite mixing bowl or that necessary kitchen tool. Reorganize if you need to. Simple cleaners made from vinegar, baking soda, and other household ingredients can save you money and reduce the amount of plastic you send to a landfill.

This is common practice in our kitchen. Glass jars from purchased pasta sauce are reused for seed saving, or dry herbs for my herbal teas.

Embracing Extreme Frugality, One Meal at a Time Cut up, package then freeze for your favorite meals. so I began researching recipes. Next Continue. If you can make split pea soup, you can make lentil. I bought a couple of bulletin boards for another project.
14 Frugal Cooking Tips (Make Saving Money a No-Brainer) In addition to being vastly cheaper, seltzer is healthier than soda and using a Sodastream eliminates plastic bottle waste. Instagram: whatchiueating , Instagram: wholeyfoodz. When I have had dinner failures…. Photo by Georgie Devlin on Pexels. As a frugal mama, navigating the everyday challenges of providing wholesome meals for my family on a budget is challenging.
Our Complete Guide To Frugal, Healthy Eating

Instead, you need to be strategic with pricing out the most used ingredients in your kitchen. This will really make a difference. Write these down on a list.

Then, take the time to find the cheapest way to source these ingredients. Bonus tip: Not only do you want to source these specific ingredients as cheaply as possible, but you want to then make the recipes that use these ingredients, as often as your family can stand it.

My husband and I — proud parents of a child with food sensory issues — have found that the best way to get a child interested in eating what you have to offer is letting them help you cook it. Kids also love to brainstorm ideas blue spaghetti, anyone? Expired and expiring foods is the arch nemesis as my younger brother used to say of running a frugal kitchen.

Psst: these free kitchen inventory printable sheets will help. I know, I know — as someone who loves to try new recipes on the regular, I know that this one sounds like a drag.

But hear me out. Because the truth is: each new recipe I and you try, I generally have to buy at least one, if not three, obscure ingredients that I have no other use for…besides this recipe.

SO, I started freezing the rest of that one-off ingredient in a single-use portion the specific measured amount needed for that recipe on the top shelf of my freezer.

I use one of those soda-can clear containers to collect all the small bags of half-used ingredients. Right now, that shelf has a half-used can of chipotle adobo peppers, measured out in 1 tbsp. portions, a half-can of black beans, ½ cup of carrot juice that I use in a homemade dressing, etc.

Your freezer is not just to freeze meals. Learn from my own mistakes and start saving both time and money by freezing single portions of an ingredient to use. Psst: check out my freezer tip in the article how to save money on snacks. There are so many ways to jazz up, dress down, and otherwise reuse leftovers that I devoted an entire article on how to reuse leftovers.

Here are pantry challenge tips ideas and rules. Frozen fruits and vegetables are frozen quickly after their peak ripeness , so most retain most if not all of their nutritional value.

Not only that, but you waste far less from the veggie drawer, since they keep for months at a time. Have you ever thought about how expensive a bottle of spice or a seasoning is? Check out 13 simple tips for meal prepping here. Check out 21 freezer-friendly recipes here. Meat, fruit, veggies, bread, cheese — it all keeps in the freezer.

A well-stocked freezer makes meal planning so easy. Getting a vacuum sealer means that you can buy items you use a lot in bulk, vacuum seal them, and freeze them for months to come. Easy recipes and cooking hacks right to your inbox.

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Instagram: storie. Getty Images. Instagram: karlaspalate. Instagram: roadtozerowaste. Instagram: beckygebhart. Shop the salad bar for prepped ingredients you can use in pastas, pizzas, and other recipes.

Instagram: whatchiueating , Instagram: wholeyfoodz. Transform a rotisserie chicken into a week's worth of meals. Instagram: rowefarms , plainchicken. Instagram: thelionsprep. Stock your freezer with DIY frozen dinners for those nights when you just don't want to cook Instagram: rellara.

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Cooikng note on recipes: Tipz know that everyone wants Inexpensive meal packages to post cioking for everything we eat. He cooks from frugwl, by taste, and with whatever ingredients he has on hand. Fortunately for you, the internet is rife with recipe blogs! Excuses: we all have them! I am not making this up. So, identify your parameters and priorities for eating mine are: mostly organic, healthy, for three people and then embrace those, but eliminate excuses. frugal cooking tips

Author: Fenrinos

3 thoughts on “Frugal cooking tips

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