Summer 2013 Pantry Challenge: Day Eleven

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I’m taking the Pantry Challenge, eating what’s in the fridge, freezer, and pantry, and trying to save some cash.

day eleven


It’s getting to be slim pickings around here. All the “easy food” is gone. The proteins have now dwindled to leftover Easter ham, a little ground meat, and a pot roast. Oh, and some shrimp and a single sausage. It could get interesting in the next couple days.

Today I had my sunbutter rice cake before the gym, followed by a Denver Scramble when I came home. I shared it with the only child awake. The others had canteloupe and muffins that FishBoy11 baked yesterday. (I also baked some Cranberry Zucchini Bread last night and a Chocolate Zucchini Cake.)

Some of the kids and I ran errands today while the bigger ones were at camp. We grabbed lunch with hubs, using some free gift cards we had. The campers had meatballs and french fries from the freezer.

For dinner, I made the kids Hamburger Gravy, rice, green beans, and leftover corn. Hubs and I had a date night. We swung by Trader Joe’s and used the rest of the grocery money on cereal, milk, and apples.

Breakfast: Sunbutter Rice Cake, Denver Scramble, Mix and Match Muffins, Canteloupe

Lunch: Lunch out; Meatballs, French Fries

Dinner: Hamburger Gravy, Rice, Green Beans, Corn; Date night

How’s the Challenge going for YOU?

pantry challenge sum 13This post is a part of the Summertime Pantry Challenge where we’re trying to save money on food by using up what we have. You can read more about it here.

I’ll be posting daily updates on how the challenge is going. You can read through the PC archives here.

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  1. We’re still plugging away! I love seeing space in the freezer and fridge. I’ll be on the road for several days next week, so I’m trying to leave the easy “heat & eat” items for the kid to polish off while I’m gone.
    Breakfast: cold cereal with milk, small smoothie thawed from freezer
    Lunch: cheese ravioli in garlic and oil with diced tomatoes
    Dinner: baked potatoes stuffed with leftover pulled pork

  2. We are about half way through the freezer so we definitely will be continuing on after the end of the month.
    Breakfast – Blueberry pancakes
    Lunch – Zucchini stuffed boats
    Dinner – Chicken pasta with veggies (can you say zucchini)

  3. Some ideas:
    Ham: grind it up, make deviled ham salad, make meatballs and place in crockpot with some BBQ sauce and chunk pineapple if you have it then serve over rice
    Lone sausage: make a quiche or Impossible pie (make your own bisquick)
    Pot roast can be cooked and served as is and depending upon the size, use leftovers for stroganoff. You can also cube it for stew or Kabobs to grill.
    ground beef: make a large pot of bolognese spaghetti sauce and bulk it out with shredded veg, such as zuke.


  4. We’re having a pantry challenge so that we can use our grocery money to stock up on produce to preserve for the winter. We bought nearly 30 pounds of plums for the freezer so far, and this weekend we’re hoping to pick and buy about 80 pounds of blueberries for the freezer for the winter. We’re spending about only half of our usual money on groceries to eat now. The rest is going to stock up the freezer.

  5. I spent some time baking last night to restock the breakfast bar. I made blueberry muffins, chocolate chips muffins and oatmeal, butterscotch granola.

    This weekend I am going to tackle the freezer. I have several bags of vegetable scrapes – probably enough to make a few quarts of vegetable broth. I also found several bags of stale bread so it is time to make some croutons. While I do not care for bread pudding my husband and kids love it. Since treats are getting slim I said I would make a batch of pudding as well. I will need to buy some eggs and milk for the pudding and a couple of other items I want to make up for the next week of pantry challenge.

    Breakfast: cold cereal, grapes, skim milk
    Lunch: my husband had leftovers; my daughters and I were treated to lunch by a family friend
    Dinner: steaks on the grill; green beans; grapes; apple caramel tartlets

  6. Okay Hamburger gravy sounds like something that my family would love, but I see there is not a link. Is it on the site somewhere?

  7. Patricia says:

    Have a question: What is hamburger gravy and how is it made. When checking out my freezer (which is still loaded – my challenge is going through mid-September for meats) I realized that I had loads and loads of 1/2 lb packages of frozen hamburger – I use only 1/2 pound to make meatloaf, meatballs, chili – which gives me 2 complete meals each, sometimes 3 so I freeze it in those smaller packages. I’d love to try something new.

    Yesterday: Iced coffee, old blueberry muffin.
    Lunch: 2 Van’s buckwheat-berry waffles with strawberries, raspberries & blueberries on top.
    Supper: 2 ears of corn on cob, hotdog on wheat hot dog bun (it was a tad dry due to being in freezer so long)
    Snack: About 15 grapes with bottle icy cold water from freezer.

    As much as I take out of my refrigerator freezer, the “stuffing” doesn’t seem to be going down. Challenge for today is to take out all the rolls, buns, bread, dough. As much as I don’t want to toss them, I realize they are getting hard and I really can afford to buy new with my small budget. I don’t eat that much bread and/or products so one package every couple of weeks isn’t bad. I’ve put off the beef crockpot but will do it this afternoon. And then down will come another 1/4 chicken legsection – this will be crockpotted and then will become a small, small chicken & dumplings and second meal will be shredded leg meat with rice and veggies.

  8. Heather M says:

    Day 11, another good one with the boys away at scout camp.

    Breakfast: last of Special K w/a sliced banana on top; daughter rolled out of bed and I took her to an appt so none for her(bad, I know, but I usually make her eat something)
    Lunch: Caved, and bought the daughter her favorite takeout, Chipotle. Once we arrived home, I made myself a plate of leftover green chile chicken, rice, garlic bread, and some berries. Those leftovers are gone now!
    Dinner: Daughter finished her burrito bowl, and had fresh cherries as well. I ate lunch for dinner (swapped it today, it would seem), with an egg salad sandwich and sliced cucumber and celery w/a light dip.

    Hubs got home around midnight, so today I’ll cook dinner again. Also may bake, since I have to contribute something to book club tonight. It’s hot hot hot, but my house is well AC’d, so should survive baking in the nasty heat. Definitely have piles of food still, so it shouldn’t be hard to continue for another few weeks, and then again in Sept. (as long as I keep us in fresh items and things we run out of).

  9. Kathryn says:

    Had to hit the grocery for produce, bread, butter. I also bought some canned beans and veggies on sale that I was running out of anyway… Spent about $20. I bought some beef hotdogs too that will be either lunch today – I will use the leftover freezer chili for chili dogs with cheese and onion. Salad and canned fruit will be the sides.

    For dinner, I will dig around for something in the freezer – I am leaning toward some italian sausage or meatballs to make spaghetti – but I may change my mind later.

  10. Today is day 18 of the challenge for our household. I made meatloaf. I used an old heel of bread, old croutons rescued from a salad and one of the almond flour waffles that no one was eating. I am hoping that the combination will taste okay and that with all the other ingredients no one will even notice that the breadcrumbs are odd. Breakfast was cream of wheat again. I made some cupcakes with a cake mix and icing that I had in the pantry, my son helped me put them together. I am reading this book called ” When in doubt add butter” and the cover has a picture of colorful cupcakes on it so my son has been asking for cupcakes like the picture all week. Husband bought 20 kg of flour today and I have promised to make bread because again we have too much yeast in the fridge, two big costco packages of it to be exact. I have been purchasing eggs, and will need to shop for potatoes this week, but still we should be well below what we normally spend. I am thinking that we will continue into August and see how it goes.


  11. Kathryn says:

    Jessica – Shrimp and Sausage – just made me think that would be perfect for some jambalaya…..

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