Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Kitchen update

Well I finally worked up the nerve and decided to do my 2 weeks of grocery shopping this last weekend. I normally spend about $150 a week on groceries for a family of 4 plus daycare kiddos, so I was expecting to spend about $300 when shopping for 2 weeks at a time. I looked over my menu for the next two weeks and reviewed my inventory and then wrote out my shopping list for the week. It was a REALLY long list and my cart was REALLY full but once I rang it all up I almost fell over....drum roll please.....grand total of $180! Are you kidding me!?

Now I understand what everyone is talking about when they say you save a fortune by shopping once a month. Now I am not quite up to THAT level yet and I am smart enough to know that I am going to have to pick up an item or two over the next few weeks but I know that even with the odd item here and there it will be way less that $300. We shall see how it goes and I will give you all an update at the end of the two weeks when we have the final totals.

Part of this savings came from not using as much processed foods. This is taking some getting used to! My first issue is with using dried beans instead of canned. When you look at the price comparison it is SO much cheaper to buy the dried beans as well as being healthier (have you looked at the sodium content in a can of beans?!) but all the work to cook them before use is a pain in the rear! I have been working on dinner for over 3hrs now because I have to soak/cook the black beans before I can start the soup they go in. Now it is not like it is hard or anything but anyone who knows me knows that I forget everything that isn't right in front of me, so to remember 3hrs before dinner to start the beans is a real pain. I am going to start looking into soak/cooking the beans in a crock pot in the future. This is also an issue with making my own bread, I love doing it and it saves a fortune but remembering to make it with enough time for it to rise is another issue I am having. I have tried making bread for sandwiches in the past and it really doesn't work that well for us, no one uses it and it ends up getting thrown away. I decided to buy the sandwich bread and make the bread sticks/french bread/pizza crusts from scratch and that has been working really well for us.

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