Pantry Challenge 2017-22

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This month we’re avoiding the grocery store and shopping the kitchen. Here’s how we’re eating. It’s like reality TV, for food.

Sunday Snacky Lunch : meats, cheeses, crackers, veggies, eggs, pasta, and homemade rolls. #pantrychallenge

A photo posted by Jessica Fisher (@jessicagfisher) on

Today felt like I was a little back on my game in the kitchen. My husband is still pretty sick and heading to the doc tomorrow. Hopefully, we will get the grunge out of here soon!

I spent a few hours working in the kitchen today, making different components for different meals: a big pot of red sauce, Italian Sandwich RollsClassic Potato Salad, and Lasagna. I also played with my pressure cooker to cook black beans that I soaked overnight and hard cooked eggs, using my friend Lynn’s recipe. Perfection.

I have a very detailed meal plan for the rest of the challenge where I made notes of when to thaw different things. That was super helpful today as I puttered in the kitchen.

Pantry Challenge Meals, Day 22

Breakfast: Oatmeal and Sauteed Apples

Lunch: Snacky Lunch with Italian Sandwich Rolls

Dinner: Lasagna, Spinach Salad, Italian Sandwich Rolls

How’s the challenge going for you?

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  1. Laurie in CA says:

    I was very impressed with your detailed menu plan for the rest of the challenge. Since it’s just the hubs and me I don’t usually plan out the breakfasts and lunch but do make a dinner plan (not that we always stick to it).

    B – hubs had l/o breakfast burrito, I had roast chicken, black beans and steamed broccoli
    L – hubs had the last of the l/o broccoli beef and I had my l/o chicken kebab w/hummus and raw veggies
    D – Bbq hamburger(meat only), guacamole and green salad w/ Jessica’s Dijon vinaigrette and black beans

  2. January 22

    Breakfast: Me, timmies gift card for breakfast before my first aid course. Hubs, I’m not sure but probably cereal and milk.

    Lunch: Me, tunable sandwich, pickled egg, olives, cheddar cheese, laughing cow cheese, dried apple slices, diet Pepsi. Hubs had leftovers from last night.

    Dinner: Nachos with taco meat from the freezer.

  3. Jan 22
    Breakfast–Husband and I had our usual breakfasts.
    Lunch–the boys ate leftover chili mac and hot dogs.
    Dinner–pork loin in the crockpot, corn and the leftover potatoes and broccoli from yesterday.

    Today I did go to the store to pickup a gallon of milk and 2lbs of butter. My total for the month is $32. It was really hard to walk past the half price chicken breasts in the meat asile but I did!
    Your detailed meal plan for the rest of the challenge looks amazing! I am going to tweak mine tomorrow because I will be busy 3 nights this week so I may have to change some of the meals around a bit.

  4. Jen in Colorado says:

    Day 21:
    -orange cinnamon rolls from a can (an extra one leftover from Christmas – nearing exp date)
    -leftover Chinese food (DS and I got takeout Friday night)
    -miscellaneous snacky stuff from the freezer

    Day 22:
    -leftover Chinese food (me), DS and my Dad went out for lunch after church
    -chili, salad, a couple of bites of the chicken/pasta dish I made for my work lunches this week

    I think I have come up with a formula that works for my work lunches (and also helps use up freezer items):
    -marinated raw chicken from freezer (I have several bags to use up)
    -some type of whole grain pasta
    -chopped veggies from fridge and freezer that seem to coordinate with the marinade flavor
    -extra condiments/spices as needed (again, coordinating with marinade flavor)

    I do it all on the stovetop – boil pasta, saute chicken, then saute veg, then add it all together. It’s working out pretty well for me, and it’s nice to have a one-dish meal ready to take to work for lunch. Plus, it’s making me use up chicken from the freezer, as well as odds and ends of veggies. Win-win. 🙂

  5. Today I finally got to the sour cherries woohoo. I ended up making a sour cherry peach cobbler with frozen peaches from the freezer mainly because I couldn’t find the gratin dish that I usually make my cobblers in, since my mother was over last week and put away dishes. Lol. So I used a 13×9 pan which gives us more, just have to keep an eye on it since fruit desserts can spoil easily. For now it’s in my cool laundry room on top of my washer, out of reach of the littler ones who like to grab the cherries out and eat them lol
    I also made a pan of brownies today, the recipe on the back of the King Arthur organic AP flour bag that is so easy and the best. I made them cheesecake brownies since I had 1/2 a block of cream cheese leftover in the fridge and I didn’t want to open it later and see green cheese. Lol. I finallly opened my instant pot and gave it a trial run today. I had a 9 pound butternut squash that I steamed in the instant pot in 7 minutes. I just peeled and diced it and away it went. I will be making pumpkin muffins tomorrow for sure, along with whole wheat bread as we are all out. Dinner was sesame noodles with shredded chicken (cooks illustrated) and steamed broccoli. I did a whole chicken in the instant pot and I was blown away that it was ready in 23 minutes. I have some meat off of bones picking to do tomorrow but that won’t take long.
    Breakfast this morning was bacon, fresh fruit and about 200 buttermilk pancakes. Ok maybe I’m exaggerating a little but I will say that I make 6x the recipe for our family for the week and it is a LOT of pancakes. Lol I also made a quick berry compote this morning from frozen raspberries, blueberries and some leftover homemade cranberry sauce

  6. Stephanie M. says:


    B – We each had a bacon, egg, taylor ham and cheese sandwich on a hard roll from the local deli today; (it was nice not to cook and something we frequently get on Sunday mornings)

    L – leftover home made lentil soup and the rest of the crackers

    D – Roast beef, roasted potatoes, peas, cucumber salad, and Yorkshire pudding

  7. Kathy in Denmark says:

    Day 22:

    B: Bacon, scrambled eggs, HM baked beans, toast, coffee, juice
    L: Different snacks – I don’t really remember, but everyone who was hungry had something to eat 🙂
    D: Leftover puff pastry shells with asparagus/chicken sauce for the girls. HM burgers and oven fries for DH and I after we had put the girls to bed.
    S: fruit, chokolate

    I had bacon in the freezer and baked beans in the fridge (froze the rest), so breakfast was actually quite fast to pull together.
    The girls finished off the sauce and the open package of puff pastry shells. Our dinner finished the last 2 burger buns in the freezer and the last beef patty (I still have some beef, put not in patties, so it will take some more thought to use it). I didn’t have any lettuce, so I used baby spinach for the burgers. It’s nice to finish off odds and ends which could end up being overlooked otherwise.
    I am still feeling ill, but I did get caught up on laundry and we ate all our meals at home, so yay! DH also finished installing carpet in one of the rooms, so now we can finally put up our closet and I can unpack the last of our clothes and will also have storage space for quite a few other things. Can’t tell you how much I am looking forward to that!

  8. B: Cereal, banana bread, strawberries
    L: Chili dogs, banana bread, strawberries & whipped cream
    D: Bolognese with pasta or squash, green beans, grapefruit
    When it comes to spaghetti squash, we are a house divided—2 prefer pasta and 2 of us prefer the squash so I usually make both. We now are down to one partial box of pasta. I also used the last can of crushed tomatoes and had to substitute tomato sauce for paste in the Bolognese.

    Spent some time in the kitchen this afternoon to get ready for the week. I boiled eggs for breakfast. I brewed tea for me. I thawed some shredded pork and prepared rice to make fried rice later this week. I cleaned and prepped carrots, spinach, iceberg, green pepper and cherry tomatoes for salads this week. I washed and segmented a couple of grapefruits and washed a bag of lunch box apples.

    With 9 days left in January, we probably have just enough proteins to get to the end of the month. We have 1 dozen eggs, 1 lb. bacon, 1 lb. ground beef, 1 lb. chicken cutlets, ½ package of hotdogs, 2 lb. shredded pork, 1 lb. diced ham and 3 lb. assorted dried beans.

  9. I am kind of flowing in and out of the PC as I started back in December and started to run out of a lot of stuff…

    Sat- breakfast was a mix of yogurts, fruits and bakery doughnuts ( a dozen for $5 on Fridays!)

    Lunch was sandwiches and leftovers after daughter volleyball game.

    Dinner- chinese buffett- husband request- while we ran errands.

    Sunday- day 2 of seriously unseasonably WARM January

    breakfast was left to each person

    lunch was each kids responsibility as we did yard and housework. I baked an acorn squash and had half of that ! (PC- it has been here a while!)

    Dinner- I pulled 2 MASSIVE chicken breasts out to thaw and butterflied those for the grill. Baked a bag of sweet potatoes that were on the counter(PC) , daughter made a pan of sweet corn cake using pantry staples and we reheated leftover broccoli. served with canned peaches… ( because the boys opened them to take the can and place on the picnic table to use as target practice… Warm weather= open windows and aparently the desire to shoot things…. lol)

    I snagged a nice size chuck of chicken and diced it down before it was grabbed by a kid.. tossed that in a bowl with a leftover baked potato half from Friday night… gave it a nice coating of buffalo sauce. I have a small ranch packet from a take out meal that I will use with it.. These and the other half of my acorn squash will make a tasty lunch today!

  10. The fridge was bare and the troops were in panic mode. DD2 was on to this whole PC thing. No one else has noticed yet, thankfully. I caved and bought a few pantry items (flour, peanut butter, soup) as well as items needed for a birthday cake and birthday dinner (no guilt there). Other than those few items, I purchased only dairy, fruit, and vegetables. Proteins are dwindling. I am down to LO ham, pork sausage, and whole turkeys. I bought a rotisserie chicken (birthday dinner request). Wwe should have some LO chicjen. We will need to have a meatless meal or two in this last week, Home stretch, I think I am going to make it!

    B: Caramel rolls and fruit
    L: French bread pizza or brie and strawberry crostini
    D: Ham, swiss cheese, stuffing bake with gravy

  11. B: kids had cereal, coffee for me
    L: grilled cheese sandwiches and the last of the fresh strawberries
    S: chocolate chip cookies
    D: Jessica’s ham & cheese clafouti (with cheddar instead of swiss), homemade biscuits, OJ
    S: kids had cereal before bed

    Like many of you, I also spent time in the kitchen yesterday prepping for the week. I feel so ahead of the game this week, knowing many of the components I need for dinners are already done. I love the idea of the detailed menu plan. I have my dinner plan, but may need to add in the other meals as well.

    • I recently added lunches to our meal plans, as I now prep hubby’s too. Makes the morning, or evening before, a no-brainer!

  12. Sunday 1/22

    Breakfast – Sausage, egg & cheese scramble

    Lunch – Tuna salad on crackers (have a few boxes left from Holidays to use up)

    Dinner – Chicken alfredo w/peas, garlic toast, salad

  13. What a day for us! I helped my daughter and son-in-law with the delivery of our new granddaughter into the world. It was a long wild and crazy ride labor and I’m so so happy both are doing great. We had the older two grandkids overnight in preparation for their new sister.

    Breakfast-cinnamon rolls and coffee for the adults. Cereal and apple slices for the grandkids. The almost two year old dumped his bowl on his head.

    Lunch-applesauce cranberry muffins and cheese sticks The above aforementioned little guy ate six-mini ones, but still! I guess they were a hit.

    Dinner-I have no idea what my husband fed the grandkids. The plan was spaghetti but he could have bailed on that. I had a not-lovely vending machine sandwich at the hospital and got home at midnight.

    Life is good!

    • Congratulations Karen!!!! There is nothing better than those grandbabies!

      • I agree! This is our fourth and last. Love the newborn squishy stage. Chasing after the 23 month old all boy toddler gets in the exercise! The older girls are 7 and 9 and are no trouble at all. Love being a grandma and am lucky to have all the grands close by.

    • Congratulations on the new grandbaby! :}

    • Congrats on the new grandbaby!

    • Congrats to the family on the safe and healthy birth.

    • Laurie in CA says:

      Congrats on the new grandbaby! How exciting to assist in the delivery. Grandkids sure fun but can be very tiring. I have 2 that turned 2 last week, a 5 yo and the oldest will be 15 next month. They keep us busy!

      • I am in awe of you keeping up with two 2 year olds. Our toddler is so busy. Luckily they are not picky eaters. My oldest grandkid loves Jessica’s snacky lunch which she’s been having since she was a toddler, although our (her) rule is it has to have a sweet thing-or two- to go along with the healthy things.

    • Congratulations!
      New babies are the best. You sound like an amazing grandma. I am due in 12 weeks! Can’t wait

    • Congratulations, Karen! Glad the journey for your little granddaughter was a safe and happy event!

    • Love the image of him dumping his cereal bowl on his head. It made me laugh out loud and reminded me of the time my youngest decided to “dress-up” as Santa with the bowl of whipped cream while my back was turned.

    • Heather M says:

      Congratulations! New babies are the best thing ever! We have three sets of friends who had 4 babies(twins, too) last week (yes, 3 friends- kind of crazy) – can’t wait to cuddle them! Enjoy every minute!

  14. We still have snow on the ground and getting out of the drive way requires four wheel drive. More snow predicted for today. Yesterday breakfast sausage hash browns and eggs. Big breakfast pushed lunch to 2 pm. I took two big hamburger patties out of the freezer to make hamburgers on the onion rolls I baked the day before. Made oven fries from two nice russet potatoes. Our dog is crazy about French fries so I made extra for her. Pot of coffee late in the day for me. Hubby had snacks while watching the game. Oh yes. Its snowing again now. I packed the chicken coop with fresh straw. Yesterday I was rewarded with two eggs. We haven’t been getting any. Today I plan to make a pot pie. There’s a little leftover sausage plus some leftover meatloaf. I always have carrots onion potato and celery in the fridge plus baby peas in the freezer. The pie crust I got last week is thawed out now so this will be a cheap meal. Since I will have the oven going anyway I will throw in a few extra potatoes. There’s some yogurt that has been hanging out for awhile I will use to make cornbread to have with leftover French onion soup

  15. Danielle L Zecher says:

    We’re slowly getting back on track with the PC. Saturday night was vodka sauce (from jars) and a package of pasta from Aldi. It was one of the big packages that was taking up a lot of room in the cabinet, so it was nice to get that used.

    Sunday we picked up fast food breakfast. We were doing a bunch of things around the house and didn’t want to take the time or make the mess to make breakfast. Lunch was leftover vodka sauce and pasta. Dinner was a chicken and crescent roll casserole, which came out really well.

    I also made cupcakes using a box mix and pre-made icing. I used sprinkles as well (we have a ton right now b/c my M-I-L gave me tons over the holidays). I brought half of the cupcakes to work this morning to brighten everyone’s rainy Monday morning.

    I did go to the grocery store yesterday for some fresh fruit, onions, green onions, and buttermilk (to make muffins with for breakfasts for the week). Our neighbors gave us a grocery gift card for Christmas, so I didn’t actually spend any money. 🙂

  16. Jen in IN says:

    B: cinnamon raisin english muffins w/butter or cream cheese

    L: went out for Mexican with friends after church

    D: grilled chicken thighs, grilled potatoes, and salad w/apples, craisins, balsamic vinaigrette

    S: the last of the brownies
    Kids had the last of the Christmas truffles.

  17. Sun. 1/22/17

    B: Oatmeal w/ dried cranberries, maple syrup, and whipped cream, toast, OJ, coffee.

    L: Out w/ friends after church

    D: Fend for yourself. Son had quesadillas. Hubs had a quesadilla and a cup of the pumpkin soup he made to use up one of the pumpkins from the garden. (We’ll freeze it for last-minute meals in the future. Yum!) I had a bowl of cereal and some pistachios.

  18. Breakfast cereal juice coffee toast
    Lunch beef ale pie (leftover ) corn, beets
    D lot scalloped potatoes and ham
    Just got a new wireless printer now I can print meal plan sheets. Yeah!
    I think I am going to continue PC thru February and maybe March will see. Still have tons of food.
    But I am thankful for it when so many don’t . Our blessings are bountiful . Have a good day everyone .

  19. I’ve been MIA for a few days. We started the stomach flu in our house last week and hosted a party here Saturday evening for a few friends, so I’ve been crazy busy sanitizing and cleaning things and making food for the party. We have informal get togethers in the winter months with 5 other couples. It’s low key with snacks, drinks and games. I planned my snack menu around things I wanted to use up, so I call that a win for the challenge. Still have lots of leftovers, so we just did snacky meals on Sunday (Momma was too pooped to cook!). We mostly used things up the last few days. We are officially out of homemade granola and really close to running out of bread. Everyone wanted toast, yogurt and granola while sick. Not sure when I’m getting to all of that, but I’ll figure it out. I did do grocery shopping last week and spent $80. That brings me to $122 for the month so far. I don’t think that’s too bad with all the extra drinks and things needed for the party.

    • Laurie in CA says:

      Sorry you’ve been sick. You’re doing a great job on the grocery budget considering the obstacles you encountered last week.

  20. Sun 1/22
    B – cheese omelet with turkey sausage links
    L – clam chowder
    D – it was supposed to be baked chicken wings but a massive storm came through and knocked out the power. We ended up getting some fish and chips from a nearby seafood place because I did not want to open the fridge doors to let out any of the cold air and did not feel like scrounging for ready-to-eat pantry foods via flashlights. Considering the atrocious service, I should have sucked it up and scrounged anyway or pulled the grill into the garage or something. Oh well. At least I know I’ll never be visiting that establishment again.

    Now I’m suddenly going to be out of town for 3 days this week, so I have to figure out what food I can take with me and make sure there are some easy eats here at home for him. The hotel has really expensive food ($12 for continental breakfast!), and the rooms have a fridge but not a microwave so whatever I take needs to be okay to eat cold. I’m thinking maybe some muffins or some of the bagels from freezer, some fruit, and maybe some boiled eggs if I can get those made. I can eat out for lunch and dinner, but I’m not a morning person and have to be present and alert at 8:30 so I want food I can just eat there.

  21. I packed my lunch box Sunday night with boiled eggs, cheese sticks, rolls of ham, cottage cheese and fruit. This will last me two or three days for breakfast and lunch at work. Trying to eat more protein.

    For dinner I found some frozen onions and some frozen brisket in the kitchen freezer . I browned them and added mushroom gravy. Served that over egg noodles with buttered carrots.

  22. My mini goal right now is to make Jessica’s Red Sauce with the gallon of tomato puree living in my back porch. I need just a bit more freezer space to be able to do that. I have $ 13.00 left that I can spend this month and still be within my 25 % budget.for the month. I think I can do it! I plan on just one more time to the store and then no more until Feb. We have only 3 potatoes left and I will need more to finish out the month.
    B – cereal, milk, 1/2 banana
    L – meat loaf, l/o scalloped potatoes (enough left for 1 person), green beans cooked with last remaining half slice of ham,
    D – smoked pork slices on the last 3 buns (2 h/m and 1 a stale hamburger bun) They are not too bad toasted! free friday tortilla chips with salsa, l/o fruit salad
    S – 1/2 glass of apple juice and 1 peanut cluster from Christmas

  23. Ran to the store for milk and a few things. Also spent $10 on “fun,” fairly healthy food for the kids. Hubby’s on a 2 week business trip, so that’s their treat. We also planned a number of fun food items from the pantry and freezer. Prepped quite a few things today for breakfasts and dinners (and some cupcakes). Didn’t get to everything on the list, so hoping to finish tomorrow. Meals have been mostly leftovers, with a few additional items from the freezer. Except tonight was tacos, so now my son has taco meat in the fridge for a few more meals this week. Our challenge will go into February, so a few treats along the way will help us stick with it.

    • Maureen, my challenge will definately run into FEB because I have been away from my kitchen for most of JAN and progress only began yesterday. I’ll be right there with you!

    • Maureen
      I’ll be right there with you in February and probably March too!
      I will have to shop for some things after Feb 1st my plan is to buy small quantities of the things I need unless it’s a stock up price.
      I definitely will not be buying any meat!!

  24. Monday – JAN 23

    Back in my own kitchen again and that means I’m able to evict items from my pantry/freezers.

    Breakfast – cup of hot tea

    Lunch – took leftover turkey jambalaya from Sunday’s dinner and added it to homemade veggie stock for a nice soup for lunch.

    Dinner – found a package of kielbasa. Used half for dinner. Roasted 1/3 head of cabbage with cubes of russett potatoes in the oven and served with peas-n-carrots from last night’s dinner. Still have about 1/3 of the peas-n-carrot package left to use/eat. Also baked some small dinner rolls to accompany our meal.

    While digging around in the drawer, I found one little loaf of Boston Brown Bread from Christmas in there. Will use that later this week for sure!

  25. Hi everyone!

    Today I got even more done in the kitchen despite a cranky toddler who decided to get up at 4. Earlier riser like mom I guess. Lol. yeah we’ve all been there with crabby kids, you do what you can. Lol
    Breakfast was, of course, leftover pancakes. Smoothies. Cut apples
    Lunch was leftover sesame noodles with chicken. I put the chicken bones from last night into the instant pot with aromatics and a bay leaf and made some awesome (and free) chicken stock. Used that to make brown rice also in the instant pot. 4 cups of brown rice done in 22 minutes how awesome is that?! After that I moved on to pinto beans. 1.5 lbs into the instant pot. Not soaked since I was feeling extra naughty. lol they were done to Make refried beans in 34 minutes. Ended up making chicken, brown rice and refried bean burritos. Added in some raw cheddar and things were good. Had those with salad and sliced oranges. Works for me and almost free. Haha
    I made 4 loaves of whole wheat bread today too.

    • WTG, Brooke! I have heard awesome testimonials about the Insta Pots and if I were a younger cook with family at home, I think it would be of great benefit!!! I use a pressure cooker for my beans but I’m old school and still soak for a good 6 – 8 hours. But they are done in less than 10 min, depending on the type of bean. Beans freeze really well so if you have an abudance made, store in ziploc bags and defrost as needed!

  26. I hope a lot of you ladies continue on with your pantry challenge after the end of the month. I am really enjoying reading your comments and sharing your enthusiasm.
    I did make the pot pie yesterday. By time I poured all the veggies and gravy into the crust over the leftover meats it was huge. A little gravy for moisture and a top crust and it barely fit into a 10 inch pan. The house smelled wonderful all afternoon. It will be lunches for another day or two. While I was recovering from dental work I was unable to eat the bag of salad mix. It was definitely past its prime so the chickens got a treat yesterday. I have leftover pumpkin to make into muffins today and leftover rice for veggie fried rice. I think we are good for the day

    • Terry, I hope we extend the challenge too! Last year, Jessica kept the page open all year so that we could be a resource to each other to keep on keeping on. It was great!!!! BTW…pot pie sounds delcious!

    • Heather M says:

      I need to, until we get our new fridge. I haven’t chosen one yet and would love to have a lot emptied out so less to put in coolers, etc. 🙂

  27. The pumpkin became pumpkin raisin loaf with the opportunity to use up some leftover Greek yogurt a drizzle of maple syrup to empty the container and the last hand full of raisins from some I dried last summer.

    • Im glad your mouth is feeling better– My hens get all of our produce scraps too! Cuts down on the feed bill (organic non gmo soyfree layer feed is expensive!) and gives the girls something to do in the winter. I hang a whole cabbage in their coop when it’s too cold for them to go outside and they love it. Quite entertaining for humans as well. Lol.

      Pumpkin bread with raisins sounds divine. I have to make some muffins today as I have a big container of puréed Hubbard squash and I don’t want it to go south on me.

  28. What a great idea. I will have to remember that. Bread turned out really great. I am cooking down another pumpkin now. The seeds and peel go to the chickens. I’m going to start tucking 1 cup bags of pumpkin away in the freezer in some of this new found space. I know I know. We are supposed to be using up but I still have 2 apple boxes of winter squash to use and I have no desire to see it go to waste.

  29. Tuesday – 1/24/2017

    Breakfast – bananas are starting to get too ripe so 1/2 banana went into some oatmeal with walnuts and brown sugar. Hot tea.

    Lunch – Granny Smith apples are sitting in the kitchen bowl so I cored and sliced one, topped with a sprinkling of Swiss Cheese and mircrowaved until the cheese melted over the apple slices.

    Dinner – on the menu for tonight is Salisbury Steak. I have a $10 coupon to use at The Fresh Market so I will be buying $10 of ground chuck today. Yes, meat going into the freezer instead of coming out but $10 of free meat is too good to pass up!!!! Green beans from the pantry along with some noodles and brown gravy will round out the meal.

    I evicted a bag of vegetable scraps from the freezer and made two large jars of vegetable stock using my pressure cooker.

  30. I just read our local news feed and we have a Sprouts coming to town. It opens tomorrow morning. This is the first one in our area and I am thrilled after reading what some of you buy at your Sprouts. I did visit one in another state a few years ago when traveling in the RV. I am so tickled!
    23 rd
    B – egg and 1/2 bagel with cream cheese
    L – sort of beef stroganoff but with no mushrooms since I was out and have limited money to spend for the challenge, brown rice, broccoli, and apple strudel
    D – burgers and fries
    S – freezer cupcakes that are now gone, but I have a couple more cake mixes on hand

  31. Heather M says:

    Reporting days 21-22, since I was MIA all weekend! 21st we were all so exhausted/recovering from the not even 3 hours of sleep we got the night before the inaugurations. So no one had breakfast. Lunch I had cheese and crackers. No clue what the guys scrounged. Dinner was fabulous – I made a mexican stew/chili with ground turkey & pinto beans from the freezer, onion, and from the pantry-chopped tomatoes, green chiles, sliced black and pimento stuffed green olives, and then instead of corn (we are out of canned whole kernel corn– what??), I used a can of creamed corn. Added some herbs/spices, dash of vinegar, etc. Crushed tortilla chips on top. Son isn’t a fan of this kind of food, so I set aside some cooked ground turkey (flavored up with penzeys chicken taco blend) and made him tacos with the meat, cheese, and refried beans and taco shells from the pantry.

    Day 22, we were super busy with all sorts of church meetings into the evening. We grabbed pizza in between because we were starved/in a hurry. I think my son had cereal for breakfast? Otherwise that’s all we really ate. Snacked on things later, like pretzels, apples.

    This should be a good week re the Challenge. Looking forward to everyone’s daily reports as the month winds down. Fun to see the creativitiy!

  32. Making taco soup in the instapot. Taco meat and beans from the freezer plus fresh veggies from the fridge. There are lots of leftover tortilla chips here from game day and leftover salsa in case the soup needs a little more zip. Some of the pumpkin I cooked today will be added to my bread dough tomorrow

  33. Terry-soon from Montana says:

    I have been following along during this year’s Pantry Challenge, but this is my first time posting. I love how everyone is so supportive with one another. It’s so refreshing! I noticed several people will be continuing their challenge into February and even into March. I too will be continuing my Pantry Challenge until our move date. (Probably mid April) It’s a big move and I will not be able to take too many perishables.

    Breakfast: Oatmeal w/quinoa and flaxseed. From freezer. Coffee

    Lunch: L/O Thai coconut soup from freezer. Son2 had chicken soup from can.

    Dinner: everyone fended for themselves. Leftover porkroast, salami and cheese, not sure what HH or son1 had.

  34. Kathryn M says:

    Been so busy that I haven’t posted for a couple of weeks! A week ago Monday, I cooked turkey breast (1/2 that was left from Thanksgiving). I made Chili on Tuesday. Wed I made sloppy joes. Lefovers from those meals is pretty much what we ate for the rest of the week….

    Funny story about that Chili though. I didn’t have any canned beans so I cooked a whole bag of dry beans to go in the chili. It made so much that I am still trying to get rid of them….

    Anyway on Sunday I had PBJ sandwich for lunch and the last of the “Thanksgiving feast” leftovers for dinner,

    Monday we had some frozen pizza for lunch. For dinner I made an internet recipe of “cowboy casserole” with ground beef and those ever present beans. It came out really good and I am keeping the recipe for another time!

    The ground beef has all been coming out of my freezer – we had a lot more in there than I realized….

    I finally went to the store on Monday evening and picked up a rump roast and some chicken on markdown. One half of the roast went into the crockpot this morning for Italian beef sandwiches for dinner. The other half of the beef went into the freezer for later. (For lunch we just had salad and leftovers.)

    The broth from the italian beef was smelled so go that it inspired me not to waste it. I added zucchini,carrot, potato, the last of the red beans, pasta wheels, and a can of diced tomato to the crock and will let it cook. Hopefully the result will be some really yummy minestrone type soup for lunch tomorrow.

    For dinner tomorrow I will cook the chicken I just bought – it was garlic herb seasoned. I will do some sort of potato with it. (I have 5 potatoes left from a . 99/10 lb bag I bought right before Christmas and they need to be used up.)

    I should be just eating leftovers for the rest of the week (Thurs, Fri, Sat. and even Sunday). I have stuff to make salads for lunches this week too.

    Next Monday I will be making meatloaf with instant potatoes, gravy, and canned veggies. Planned leftovers of meatloaf sandwiches for lunches the next couple of days. Not sure about dinners for Tues or Wed yet, but I am sure I can scrounge something from the freezer. That brings us to the end of the month with no more shopping.

    I am $90 under on my grocery budget, and $85 under on restaurant spending so this pantry challenge did save me a ton of money!!!!

  35. 18 degrees. Were having a heat wave! Half of my acorn squash yesterday went into my taco soup. The rest got pureed and added to bread dough this morning. I have cinnamon rolls out of part of the dough in the toaster oven now. There is a rustic round loaf of bread ready to go in next. I try to use the toaster oven as much as possible to save electricity.

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