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Serve a Buffet to Save Money

Serving a meal buffet-style, like sandwiches or salads, allows you to use up small amounts of things lingering in the fridge without appearing to run short on any one thing. That means you save money!

Serve a Buffet to Save Money - Serving a meal buffet style, like sandwiches or salads, allows you to use up small amounts of things lingering in the fridge without appearing to run short on any one thing. That means you save money!

You wouldn’t think that a buffet could save you money. After all, aren’t all-you-can-eat buffets those troughs of food where people gorge themselves and get off cheap?

Maybe in a restaurant.

But at home, serving a meal buffet-style allows you to use up little bits of leftovers that might not cover a different kind of meal for the whole party.

Consider the salad bar. You lay out lots of small containers of a variety of items and folks come along and serve themselves, right? Well, you might have a leftover grilled chicken breast from last night, a few cups of beans from the day before and a variety of vegetables, toppings, and dressings.

If you were to try to make a plated meal out of those items you might not have enough to go around. In reality, two people might not really care if they had chicken and someone else might be really bummed to have a small portion.

By serving a salad bar, sandwich bar, pasta bar, or Mexican food buffet, you can use up small amounts of leftovers without appearing that you’re “short” on something. Everyone helps himself and is happy!

Plus, you use up the leftovers. Works for me!

What meals do YOU serve buffet-style?

Serve a Buffet to Save Money - Serving a meal buffet style, like sandwiches or salads, allows you to use up small amounts of things lingering in the fridge without appearing to run short on any one thing. That means you save money!

Save Money on Groceries

This is part of the How to Save Money on Groceries series. Scroll through the archives to get tips and tricks for reducing your grocery total at the checkout stand.

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Comments

  1. In addition to the ones you mentioned, I also serve potato bars. Bake one medium potato per person. Set out odds and ends of meat, cheese, and veggies for toppings. Add sour cream, butter and chives and you’re set.

  2. I do this for breakfast foods as well – yogurt with granola, frozen fruit, etc. and oatmeal with the random dried fruit and nuts that often accumulate. Scrambled eggs/omlets are another great way to use up odds and ends from the fridge.

  3. About once a month, usually towards the end of it, we have a leftovers buffet of all the good stuff left in the fridge. It’s a great way to use up all the small amounts of left over green beans or sweet peas. We also serve Taco’s buffet style and pizza’s the same.

  4. LOL, This was dinner last night! Actually, there are only two of us unless we have friends over, so I don’t officially set out a buffet. That’s what I call it, though, when I have just odds and ends and partial or only single servings of things, especially if it is foods we both like. We get small (sometimes tiny) portions of the various foods to clear out the fridge, and the plate looks like we took taster portions from a buffet bar. They are things that almost never would be normally paired together, but it fills us up and doesn’t waste food. Besides the options you listed, the baked potato bar that someone else mentioned is also pretty popular.

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