Frugal Challenge - Eating From Your Pantry

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Let's face it, life is expensive and it is getting even more so. We had a very expensive May, so I decided to  save where I could in my budget and one flexible area is my grocery budget. In order to spend less at the market, we have been eating from our pantry. I have planned meals around what I have already purchased and filled in with perishables at the market. I do this occasionally when our expenses rise in order to preserve our out of pocket expenses. I am always trying to stock my pantry with staples when they are at their cheapest.

Meals can get pretty interesting. One night this week we are having a clean out the freezer dinner. All odd leftover things like those taquitos that need eating and some frozen leftover meals will be pulled out. I won't throw away good food so it all gets put on the counter and everyone chooses what they would like. Sort of like a strange buffet.

Can you feed your family for a couple of weeks from your pantry and freezer? I can now, because I stockpile things ahead and get creative with my meal plans but I think this is something we should all think about. With all the disasters occurring lately, this is a reminder to keep a well stocked pantry in case you should need supplies for a few days when none are available. We live in earthquake country so it is important for us to have items on hand to sustain us if we have a major earthquake. That would include water for us as well. We keep drinking water but need to store large drums of water and are shopping around right now for those.
Emergency preparedness is just one benefit of a well stocked pantry.

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Raising Homemakers
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laurie said...

now this is something we all should be able to do,, very good post,, thanks for sharing this,,

Ricki Jill Treleaven said...

I can, but lately I have been trying to clean out our freezer because I am scared we will have to throw away lots of food if our power goes out again due to storms. We are expecting more storms tomorrow.

Cindy said...

Very good post. I put our leftovers in small meal containers in the freezer for my husband to take to work for his lunch. That saves us a lot of money! Bigger leftovers get used like you do.

Emily Fay said...

Wonderful ideas! I would love to build up enough on our shelves to do this!

Cottage Tails said...

We normally eat from pantry & freezer - I try & shop to fill them with sales.
It has been a blessing when we have been sick & unable to get out.

Love Leanne

Tammy@Beatrice Banks said...

Great post and wise tips. I don't have a freezer except for the one on my frig. But I do have a pantry stocked up. We eat lots of leftovers too.

Cindy said...

I probably could feed my husband and I from our pantry and freezer for a couple of weeks. I love Costco for the huge amounts that you can buy. I would have to buy fresh veges and fruits though. I try to do one big grocery shop a month and one small one a week, but I don't do as well as I'd like. Groceries are so expensive.
Hugs, Cindy

Kris said...

I absolutely could feed our family, and then some, from our pantry and freezers! I keep well stocked, and often times, throw out food that I thought we would eat. I am noticing that every time I am at the market it seems that the prices are higher and higher.
Yes, prayers are being said for those who lost so much in the storms. So sad!!

Kris said...

PS thank you for your sweet words on my blog!!!

KAT said...

well that made me think...storing more staples is a good idea and water barrel is a good idea... like a rain barrel outside... my gram had at her lake house.I come from a LARGE family and sometimes my mom had to improvise and we would have pancakes for dinner or, my favorite, tuna casserole.

Val said...

I cook so much that it is so hard for me to ever get caught up...But, your post has inspired me to load up on what I need. I go to the market daily and that's no fun. lol.

blessedmom's simple home said...

I do the same thing, offering them a choice from all the things I want to use up :-) It keeps me from having to throw things out. Great advice here!

RedTedArt said...

What a great challenge! And it is a great way to use up all those "bits and pieces" that REALLY need using up!

My husband would love it... he is always saying we should use everything first!


Rocky Mountain Woman said...

My pantry is always pretty full. I live so far away from a grocery store, that I almost have to. I call it my "wilderness" pantry..

storybeader said...

groceries are certainly getting more expensive. Your pantry eating sounds like a good idea. There are only 2 of us, and we eat leftovers from the frig all the time. I like to buy in bulk and split up meat into several freezer bags {:-D

peaceroad said...

this is a good reminder for all of us. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this topic. Have a wonderful weekend.

Our Village is a Little Different said...

I do try to stock up when I can, but my kids are so picky, and we ALL like fresh meats and veggies best. I could probably bake for a few months though. :)

jfb57 said...

I love store cupboard meals!

I missed the linky but my entry is here if you have a minute!

Jenny said...

What a perfectly thoughtful link this week.

I've been doing serious couponing for the past month and I'm surprised and how much I can save. My son and daughter have lost their jobs and my husband and I try to help out as much as we can. I find myself unable to cook form my pantry as much as I used to, because I tend to hand out bags of food when they are in need.

I think frugal needs to regain popularity as a 'cool' thing to be again.

Thanks for linking this.

It is a good lesson for us all.


Jo said...

Thanks for writing this post. Was thinking of the same topic because I often eat from the pantry, so much so that when I remodel I'm adding a bonafide pantry. Jo

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