Thursday, February 3, 2011

The Extended Pantry Challenge

I am challenging myself to eat and cook from our pantry and freezer a little longer this time around.  We still have plenty of food to make it work, so why not?

I also have not cooked quite as much over the last few days because of not feeling very well.  I have been a slacker and we have been eating easy meals.

My list on my fridge of things needed to buy is growing longer and longer, but we are still doing well. 

There are a lot of things I will not buy again until the challenge is over.  There are other things, however, that I will restock even while I am still in the midst of this.

Things that I am continuing to purchase are pretty much obvious like milk, juice, fresh fruits and veggies, 9 grain and seed bread and some natural cereals, if they are on sale.

*A side note about the bread.  I went for  a long time where I only made my bread.  I keep wheat berries on hand at all times.  I even have a grinder to grind my wheat.  I still grind my wheat to make pancakes, muffins and such, but the bread became a real chore for me and I just never became “great” at it.  Therefore, I have taken a break from bread baking and am trying to buy the most affordable bread I can buy that is hopefully somewhat good for us.  I usually order five or six loaves at a time from our Kroger deli and freeze it.   If you are interested, the name of what we eat is  Wholesome Harvest 9 grain and seed bread.  It is delish and hearty and we all like it a bunch.

I did have a sweet blogging recommend a book called The Book of Bread that will hopefully help me out with making my bread a little better.  I bought the book but haven’t  used it yet.

So, that’s where we stand today.  I am still keeping with my $25 a week, sometimes going a little under,  sometimes a little over.

No one is starving or even going a little hungry. No one is complaining.

This is so doable, my friends.

  I am saving money and cleaning out and still fixing a good variety of foods even after not going to the grocery store for over a month now except for my few essentials.

Try it!  It might make your husband happy like it has mine!  He LOVES to see me saving money and using what I have.

Hope you are all safe, warm, and feeling great!



Blondie's Journal said...

Hurray for you, Amy!! This is amazing. I feel like I am at the store 3 times a week. We stock up at Costco every 2 weeks and I do a big shopping at the grocery store every two weeks, but it seems I am always making trips there for a few things and of course, I buy more than that. Most of the pressure comes from my kids wanting certain things when we run out. Even though I cook healthy and feel I can stretch a dollar, they still like their snacks.

I used to make my own bread but found it was a lot of work for 2 loaves, one of which we would eat with dinner. I would still like to do it for a special occasion, or when I have extra time on my hands. I think it is so great that you grind your own that is making it from scratch.

Keep up the great work staying on budget, Amy! :-)


Barbara said...

Yes very wise advice Amy, thumbs up to you..

Ceekay- Thinkin of Home said...

I smile when I read this. My husband has NEVER been a pantry person. So we usually just have the real, real basics and nothing else. I might be able to go a couple of weeks, but it would be looking sad. You are doing a great job though. It has been fun reading about it!

Michelle @Shellsshabbyshack said...

I'm impressed, Amy! $25 or less a week is amazing! I have a family of 5, too. I really want to try this. We have a freezer so I have no excuse.

The bread sounds like one we've tried before. I only buy pasta and bread that are made with whole wheat.

Thanks for sharing your plan! Sounds great my friend! xo

Robin said...

Good of you Amy! I'm very impressed! I'll have to give this a try. Sure hope you can share some of your receipes or an example of meals for a day/week. Would love to see how you are able to make this possible.

Lisa @ Fern Creek Cottage said...

I have heard of the pantry challenge and think it sounds fun. I love the idea of not just saving money, but also getting creative with the cooking. I am very impressed that January has passed and you are still going. A gold star for you! That is awesome!

Elizabeth said...

Hi Amy,
I just found your blog and so glad I did!
I will be back!

A Hint of Home said...

That's interesting. I've been trying to use more things out of my freezer lately. It is a challenge but I've noticed a difference in the grocery bill, as well.
Thanks for encouraging us.

NanaDiana said...

Oh-I so need to do this, Amy! YHou are SUCH an inspiration. My pantry is really full and I should start cleaning it out. I think I will make it my goal to do that right after Valentine's start depleting that pantry.

I am SOOO proud of you, Ames! Hugs- Diana

Patty H. said...

I've not been very good at cooking lately. Seems sandwiches are just so much easier. So, I need to get a plan as what to fix, etc. I have a freezer I need to get cleaned out. I don't have alot of space for canned goods so I ususaly by those on a reg. basis.
You mentioned the bread and I have to tell you about my local grocery story sells it and I love it! I see on the website that you can order from them. The currant bread is soo delicious! I love making french toast out of it. And the walnut bread is awesome for a banana sandwich!! I have a bread machine but just really dont' have time to use it.
Patty H.

Laura said...

Ok Miss Amy-
I need to hear more.
I need to do this!

I am off to see if you have other posts on this subject.

White Spray Paint

Corn in my Coffee-Pot said...

when you first posted this idea back in December, I decided I was going to give this a shot.
Since Honey retired just over a year ago I've learned to be 'oh,so frugal' in the kitchen.

SO I'm with you on the using what is in the pantry to make dinner!
It has been fun~
Only, I've not been so frugal at saving money!

You see I have a HOLE in my purse! It is called eating out! So, while I'm saving money not buying groceries (while I have been cooking MORE) ...I'm not saving like I'd want to really, because we're still eating out. It has only been once a week on average-- but that ADDS UP QUICKLY, even for just the two of us and the Sac-a-burger. (best/cheapest greasy spoon around these parts!)

So, for this month-- I'm putting the brakes on eating out. Hopefully, we'll save even more.

Maybe, I'll do a post on it and help spread the word!

'Til next time

From Beyond My Kitchen Window said...

Amy, I am ashamed to say what we spend on groceries a week. I do go to work everyday and am not the best planner. I could have a mountain of chicken breasts in my freezer but will run to the store and buy a fresh package because I forgot to take something out the previous day. The best thing I can gather in all of this is to PLAN. So happy for your success!!!

Katie @ On the Banks of Squaw Creek said...

I wish I would have read this before I went to town today. I just spent $160 on groceries. Ugh.