Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Eat from the freezer/pantry!

When my Mom was here, she helped me clean out my freezer and pantry! We agreed that I already had plenty of food on hand and that I should try to plan my meals from what we already had. I've had fun getting creative and using what is available! I'm going to try to eat from our freezer/pantry until we go to Iowa for my Dad's marathon (about a month total) - here is week one!

Sunday: Brisket from freezer, corn on the cob, salad and french bread

Monday: BLT sandwiches and chips

Tuesday: Bag of pasta, chicken and veggies from freezer; about 1 1/2 cups fresh veggies from our garden thrown in; sliced french bread from freezer; surprise - needed to feed lunch to David's brother and friend who were over working on a swing set for the littles - pulled lunch meat from freezer for sandwiches, served pretzels and fruit.

Wednesday: Chicken Cordon Bleu (freezer); green beans (picked from garden); Parmesan Squash (squash from local farmer's market)

Thursday: Cashew Chicken; Salad; a second lunch needed for David's brother and friend working on our swing set. Working outside in the heat, they also requested some Gatorade. I didn't have any - but after a quick Google search, whipped up a pitcher of homemade Gatorade. I had all the things on hand and they said it was tasty!

Homemade Gatorade (the recipes I looked up somewhat varied so this was my compromise)
1 c. orange juice
1/2 c. and 1 Tbsp. sugar
1/8 tsp. salt
2 liters water (or 8 cups)
Stir together and chill.

Friday: Playhouse Progressive Dinner for Family Night (post coming soon!); needed cookies for the kids at the children's shelter, but found cupcakes in the freezer instead and thawed those and decorated with some icing left in the fridge! Lunch was needed again for our swing set workers - I pulled cooked and diced chicken from the freezer, cheese, tortillas and some salsa for quesadillas.

Saturday: Date night for David and I (B1G1 coupon and gift card from my b'day!); littles finished off some chicken nuggets and french fries from the freezer; served with fruit

Week one - what I bought:

Store 1:
2 Kraft Ranch Dressing: $1.58 each less two $1.50/1 coupons = 0.16
Cascade Rinse: $3.47 less free coupon = 0
Bubble Bath for littles: $2.97
Graham Crackers for Samuel: $1.38
Colby Jack sliced cheese: $2.38
Yoplait Strawberry Banana Yogurt: $2.14
Kashi Frozen Waffles: $2.44 less free coupon = 0
Whole Wheat Sandwich Bread: $1.97
Total spent: $11.00

Store 2:
6 Kraft BBQ Sauce: on sale for B1G1 2/$1.49 and had peelie coupons for 0.35 off; double coupons = 0.09/2 or 0.27 total
2 Ketchup: 2/$1.98 - 2 0.20 doubled coupons = 2/$1.18
2 Mustard: 2/$2.32 - 2 0.50 doubled coupons = 2/0.32
Total: $1.77 plus I got a $3 catalina coupon from Kraft products so I made $1.23 on this!

Store 3:
6 lemons at 3/$1.00 = $2.00
Tub margarine: $1.03 - 0.45 coupon = 0.58
Gala apples: $1.59 - $1.00 coupon = 0.59
Small can biscuits for Saturday morning donuts: 0.89
One dozen large eggs: 0.99 - 1.00 coupon = free
Cascade rinse aid: 3.39 - free coupon = free
Total: $4.06

Total for this week: $13.83


Char Sayer said...

That is awesome! Can't wait to make some Gatorade!

Mom said...

Great job! :) Love, Mom

Wendi said...

You got quite a bit for your $13. Great job!

Anonymous said...

Great job Monica! May & June are my clean out the freezer months too. We always do this before our meat chickens go in. We eat out of it for 2 months, then clean it out and get it ready for restocking with chicken, venison, pork and the garden harvest before the end of the year.

Kelly said...

What a great job shopping. You are so blessed to have a grocery store that double coupons, no such luck here. I think the easiest way to save money when one is budgeting is to look at ones food bill. It can always be cut down with creative thinking and some planning. I always plan my meals by seeing what I have and then shopping the loss leaders at my stores. Don't walk into a store without a plan. Side note, I'm glad you are getting to spend some good time with your parents! Can't wait to see pics of the swing set.

Amy said...

Wow! What an inspiration and everything looked so delicious too!

Anonymous said...

your amazing, this is a skill I need to work on this summer. Am very grateful you have shared how you have created a menu with what you have already.

Unknown said...

That is such a great idea, Monica! Using up your freezer items! WOW! And you didn't spend much at all!


Sharon said...

Great ideas Monica :) What deals too! I need to re-organize my pantry and freezer and do this too.

I am looking forward to trying the Homemade Gatorade recipe for my husband. I have seen others but don't want to use Kool-aid because of the artificial colors and flavors.

Thanks so much and have a beautiful day :)


LynnMarie said...

Awesome job! We eat from the freezer and pranry in the late summer and early fall, that way we can refill it for the winter and not have to go to the store so much when the temps drop to below 0- hate to shop in winter! You did great when you did go to the store!!

Kristina said...

Oh, thank you for the Gatorade recipe! The boys in my house drink Gatorade like it's going out of style! Good job on your freezer/pantry clear out! I'm going to work on this area of my home, too.! God bless!

Jenn said...

Oh I LOVE it, you did such a great job!! How nice to save a chunk of change for the week, too.

The Gaertegang Homestead said...

Thanks for the recipe for the Gatorade!!! I will definately try that onen out!!! I have three thirsty boys, and one little princess to keep hydrated!!! Also Fantastic job on the shopping and spending under $15 buck!!!! Looks liek you should benefit in more than one way by eating from the freezer and pantry!!! One more thing..your pics are always so pretty!

Unknown said...

where do you get all your coupons? clip coupons but they're always for .35 cents off of two or something small like that

Jessica said...

That's pretty cool. I didn't know you could make your own Gatorade!

Beth Niquette said...

Okay...I think I'm hungry now. Nope...I'M STARVING!

*carrie* said...

I didn't know you could make Gatorade at home--interesting!

I recently made an inventory of everything in our freezers and am using that as I menu plan.

Anonymous said...

Homemade gatorade sounds great----we drink a lot of gatorade around here!

Can you give us the parmesan squash recipe? I'm always looking for new ways to cook my favorite veggie!

Ginger said...

I am also cleaning out the freezers before buying anything else. Where did you go to double the coupons? Kroger?

Monica Wilkinson said...

Here is a list of my favorite sources for coupons:

Publix also offers a Baby Club which is how I got the produce, meat and dairy coupons good at their store.

Happy thrifting!

Elise said...

Whoa!! That is amazing!! I need to do this, too, and just suppliment with milk and fruit from the store.

kelli said...

great job...both on the cleaning out and the shopping! :)

Me said...

Wow, Monica; that is awesome! I used to do the multiple-store-coupon thingy too. Now, we only have one IGA, and all the rest of the grocery stores in town are Albertson’s, which is really weird. The others were all bought out several years ago. So, now, we just do Wal Mart and Costco, as they have the best prices. Needless to say, the coupons seem to have dwindled as well, and I don’t think that we get double coupons any more.

My husband drinks a lot of Gatorade, so I’m going to have to try your recipe. 

Debra said...

I am impressed with your shopping trips. I am going to try the gatorade. I buy it when it's on sale for my husband but this sounds better. Thanks!

Angelia in Texas said...

I made the Homemade Gatorade. it seems so much healthier??? Guess because of using the real oranges.It was super easy to make and I am sure a lot cheaper by the 2 litter as well. Love it. Thank you for sharing all your treasured and wonderful searched or thought out ideas. It is a blessing. Smiles, Angelia

Shelly said...

How do you make your Saturday donuts with the biscuits? Is that what the picture is with the sprinkles?? My boys would LOVE that! :)

Monica Wilkinson said...

Hi Shelley:

The photo was of cupcakes with frosting and sprinkles that we delivered to a children's shelter.

To make the Saturday morning donuts - see this post: