Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Eat from the Pantry Challenge

I am at the end of Week 4 of my Eat from the Pantry Challenge.  I was again able to come in under $35 for the food portion of my grocery bill for the week.  I realize that I am only able to do this because I am filling in for the food I already on hand.  I could not keep to this budget if I was starting from scratch each week.  I look at my collection of spices, which contribute so much to the flavor of the food that I cook, and realize that to replace them would cost way more than $35.

My pantry and freezer are both still full, so I am going to try to continue this challenge through February, but I will not continue to bore you with the all the details

This week I did purchase some ground beef and couldn’t resist a great buy on sugar which was at the lowest price it ever gets around here.

I shopped at three stores for my purchases as two of the stores had very low prices on what I purchased.  I drive by both stores twice on the days that I work, so I don’t need to go out of my way to shop there.

2 dozen eggs @ $ .99 a dozen.  (This is less than half of what a dozen eggs are selling for right now.)
3 (8 oz.) cans tomato sauce @ $ .33 each.  (This is the best price I can get for tomato sauce.)

Fiesta Foods
2 bags sugar @ $1.50 each.  (This is best price I can ever get for a 4-lb. bag of sugar, and I had put the last bag of sugar in my sugar canister.)

5 lb. bag Calrose rice @ $4.49.  (I had used the last of my rice in fried rice on Saturday.  It is difficult to find this rice in less than 5 lb. bags.  I was lucky to find it on sale.  Regular price is $6.79)
1 pkg. of 20 flour tortillas @ $2.49.  (I know I can make them cheaper than this, but I have not had much luck making tortillas myself.)
1 8-oz. pkg. Kraft Natural Cheddar Cheese @ $2.00  (I am almost out of sliced cheese.  This was supposed to be a BOGO, but they only had 1 package so sold it to me for half price.)
1 8-oz. pkg. Safeway Shredded Mozzarella Cheese @ $1.99 (I used the last in my 3-Meat Popover Pizza.)
1 8-oz. container Cook Whip @ $1.25 (I was almost out.)
1 red bell pepper @ $1.50 (I was almost out.  $1.50 each is the best price I can find for red peppers right now.  The store actually charged me for 2, so I will be getting an adjustment.  It pays to check out your receipts.)
1 container grape tomatoes @ $3.99.  (I thought these were on sale in my Safeway JustforU, but was wrong.)
2 pkgs. coleslaw @ $ .93.  (This was on sale, and I redeemed a rain check I had for the BOGO.)
4 lb. 80/20 ground beef @ $2.29 a lb.  (Although I have ground beef in the freezer, I am low on packages of browned up ground beef, and I needed a pound to make the Swedish Mini Meatloaves I was planning to make for dinner on Wed.  This would also use up a pound of ground pork that I found in the freezer.
1 l.5 qt. container Butterfinger Ice Cream (Because I wanted a treat, and we were out of ice cream.)

The total for the above is $36.62.  I returned 2 packages of disposable loaf pans to Safeway for $3.94 so the total is $32.68.  I did have to purchase a bag of cat food which came to $11.89.

What we ate in Week 4.

Jan. 21  We had Beef and Vegetable Stoup for lunch.  Hubby had leftover pork and dressing for dinner
Jan. 22  We had Beef and Vegetable Stoup for lunch.  Hubby had leftover pork and dressing for dinner.

Jan 23  Forgot to write down what we had for lunch.  For dinner I made oven barbecued chicken wings and thighs, Rosemary Garlic Potato Stacks and green salad.

Jan 24  For lunch we had grilled cheese sandwiches.  For dinner both hubby and I had leftover chicken and potato stacks with salad.

Jan. 25  I made a cheese, macaroni and ham soup for lunch.  I had to work so I made some fried rice and picked up some take-out Chinese for dinner.  As I explained before, we put take-out and restaurant meals in our entertainment budget, so the take-out was not figured into the grocery expense.  The cost of the take-out was approximately $8.00.  We had dinner, and I will get at least two more dinners for me out of the take-out and the fried rice I made.

Jan 26  We had the cheese, macaroni and ham soup for lunch.  I made Barbecued Steak Strips with Noodle and baked Butternut squash for dinner. 

Jan 27  We had chili burgers for lunch.  Hubby had leftover chicken and potato stacks for dinner.  I had leftover Chinese.

It has been good for me to take more time to think about the amount of food I purchase.  As I said above I am going to continue to try to eat mostly from my pantry continuing into February.  To reward myself I am going to purchase an electric saucepan from Amazon with part of the money I saved.


1 comment:

  1. I have to tell you that I have enjoyed your January series. I would love to follow through Feb. I don't find it boring at all! I find that it makes me think when I plan a meal and what I truly need at the store. I also have liked seeing what you eat for lunch and dinner. I am retired and my hubs is semi-retired so we plan lunch and dinner each day, too. We don't eat out very often, just because I do enjoy cooking and knowing what is in what we are eating. So, seeing your meals has been fun, too. Sometimes I think we are beating to death a meal we have had ~ into days of left-overs, so it was nice for me to see we aren't alone!! Thanks for sharing!!!!


I love to read your comments and suggestions. Hope that you enjoyed your visit to Grandma Loy"s Kitchen.

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