Monday, January 19, 2015
I've decided most of our "wasteful" spending goes towards food- dining out, take out, buying too much at the grocery store, and food that goes to waste. Last week we focused on eating frugally. I meal planned (very generally based on what foods we already had). I found 2 big things that saved us money and will continue to save us money in the future.
1. Dry beans- I use beans in a lot of my recipes. They add to many dishes and allow me to use less meat. I've almost always bought canned beans. While canned beans are not horribly high, over time using several cans of beans in a recipe will add up. I have bought some dry beans (oh so inexpensive) and last week I made a whole bag of black beans. After cooking them, we kept a bowl to use and then I froze the remainder in 2 cup servings in freezer bags. Now I have lots of black beans to use for the next few weeks for less than the cost of 2 cans! Yay!
2. Everything tastes good fried in a wonton- If you are on a strict new diet, skip this tip. If not, carry on. Wonton wrappers are cheap. About $2 or so for 48 wrappers. I found a recipe online last week for a southwest wonton. Hubby & I LOVE southwest eggrolls at Chili's and these were very similar but in triangles. You stuff the wrappers, seal the edges with water, and lightly fry them in veggie oil. It takes moments. We were amazed by how good they were and how easy they were to cook. The next night we had about half the wrappers left over and some leftover honey soy chicken from earlier in the week. Hubby made honey soy chicken wontons. Oh. my. So. good. They cost us nothing since we had all the ingredients. We even whipped up a soy sauce/ teriyaki dip. It was an amazing and cheap meal using things we might have otherwise wasted. If you are on a budget mission, I recommend you grab some wonton wrappers on your next trip to the store!
Today I'm making soup from some other leftovers and a few new ingredients. You can take control of your grocery budget! We are right on track for January, and I'm very excited about our progress and new finds. We spent a lot of time cooking as a family last week. It was fun and kept us from getting bored.
What are you going to cook this week to stay within a grocery budget?