This month, we’re shopping our kitchen in order to use up what we have so we can save money and clear kitchen clutter.
Here we go with Day 20 of the Pantry Challenge!
Can you believe the month is already ⅔ over? Crazy how fast it has gone! I know some of you will be continuing into February and that is awesome!
One of the things that helps me end my pantry challenge is the practice of shopping my kitchen week in and week out as part of the Good Cheap Eats System.
I buy what’s on sale that I know we use on a regular basis so I always have a good working pantry. That was one of the lessons of Pantry Challenge 2010, I believe: Don’t buy something that you wouldn’t want to be “stuck” with using up.
I meal plan based on what we have and then fill in the gaps as needed. This is the way that works best for us to keep a handle on our grocery spending and not wreak havoc on my time or my storage space.
Sales have not been tempting lately, so I’ve largely stayed out of the stores. I did an ALDI on Sunday morning and ended up spending $123. I also submitted a flour order to Vitacost because we’re running very low. My daughter wants to make bao for lunar new year, so we needed to restock flour. That was another $56.
I’d already spent $159, so our month-to-date total is now: $338. That’s much lower than I expected it to be, so when I do my banking on Sunday, I’ll look through things and make sure I didn’t miss anything.
My goal for the month is $900 or less, about half our monthly average in 2022, so we should be on track, though I’m thinking we’ll need a sizable shop this week, especially if I can’t get eggs as cheap as I have done in the past few weeks.
What We Ate
Breakfast – Again, the kids fended for themselves. I’m working on burning up my stars at Starbies before they change the redemption value.
Lunch – In the fall, I bought a bag of dinosaur nuggets on sale. So, that was lunch along with veggies.
Dinner – The girls made a huge Sheet Pan Pizza for dinner along with ranch and more veggies.
How did Day 20 go for you?
Day 20 I made a big pot of Chili con carne for dinner. I had everything here for that. I used a boxed corn muffin mix as I have too many of those and need to start using them up.
Lunch – I chopped up a couple of leftover brats and fried some potato, onion, and green pepper to make a one pot meal.
B- Cranberry orange muffins.
Breakfast: I had an early meeting at work, so got a drive-thru biscuit on the way in. I think Nick went to a drive-thru, too, but I’m not positive.
Lunch: We had a potluck at work (chili w/ various fixings and two different kinds of meatballs, among other things). I brought three bean salad. I didn’t finish up with work until after 8:30 the night before and wanted something easy. I’m not sure I’ll bring three bean salad to something again. I’m used to only taking home an empty dish, but took home about half of what I brought this time. Nick worked through lunch.
Dinner: I made cookies (the premade ones in the refrigerated section; I bought a lot on sale around the holidays). Nick had leftover spaghetti and meatballs. I wasn’t very hungry, so just had a few cookies.
I just caught up on almost a week of posts. It sounds like everyone is doing a great job with the challenge this year. I’ve been very careful with my shopping this past week. I did grab a few packages of chicken and tilapia that were reduced for the freezer. But, otherwise I went with limited lists and stuck to them. I’ve eaten a ton of leftovers and a few odd things from the freezer. DH was out of town for a few days, so the girls and I did a bit of our thing a few nights. I used up some extra milk to make crepes one night since strawberries were on sale and looked pretty good for winter…the girls were excited. And we used up some leftover ricotta from lasagna night in some muffins – an 2 days later my youngest asked to make lasagna again, so we opened another ricotta. Ha! I guess we’ll make another batch of muffins this weekend. I’m seeing space in the fridge and freezer from things that I wanted to get rid of, so big win. And I’m planning to do a little extra meal prep this weekend to help get rid of a few more odd items in addition to regular weekly prep. I hope to keep up with everyone posting more this week to help me stay motivated.
B – I had cinnamon toast and turkey sausage, dh had oatmeal, ds had a breakfast burrito from the freezer
L – I packed a roll-up with turkey salami and cheese, cheez-its and a yogurt drink – I had to eat while driving to an appt. dh took leftovers. Oldest came home and it appeared that my boys had chicken tenders. Oldest also raided the freezer and took 4 pork roasts from the hog he shot last winter and a bowl of bean soup
D – spicy chicken patty sandwiches, sweet potatoes diced and roasted, the last 1/2 of a cucumber
Lynn from NC Outer Banks
B: DH had cheese toast, I had yogurt
L: Chicken/Havarti/apple sandwiches on toasted sourdough bread, pita chips
D: Bacon/Swiss cheese quiche, green beans, orange slices, breakfast potatoes. The quiche was so good with the cream from the freezer in it!
Kathy in Denmark
B: Oat porridge for DD1, rye porridge for DD2, oats and milk for DH. Coffee and toast with brie cheese for me.
L: DH eats at work, packed lunch for the girls, more toast with brie for me
D: Burgers and fries on HM buns
S: The girls had some cake for movie night. DH and I were still full from dinner
I had bought some cheese around Christmas, but we ended up not eating it. Some of it has been eaten, but I am the only one who eats brie, so it is taking a while. Almost gone, though!
I got a Too good to go bag from our local bakery. I haven’t bought one in a while because they are usually sold out. It wasn’t as good as it has been before, but that might just be bad luck. We did get a good amount of bread and the cake that the girls had for movie night.
Fun fact: I am writing this while watching Denmark play against USA in the men’s Handball World Championship 🙂
Lynn from NC Outer Banks
Kathy, you got my curiosity up re: handball so I went digging around. I couldn’t get the feed to load, but congrats to you and Denmark. Since the US had never won a single championship game in 25 tries, we were probably thrilled to have made it to the second game with your team-the former Olympic champs! My dear daddy used to play handball when he was young, so your comment piqued my interest.
Kathy in Denmark
That’s so funny that your dad used to play handball. I am terrible at it, but I enjoy watching it 🙂
The Danish team actually didn’t play as well as they usually do, but there were some players who were spared for this match and that probably made a difference. I think the US team did a pretty good job; they certainly played their chance! Denmark has won the last two world championships, so I’m thinking it must be a little daunting to play against them…
B: we both skipped
L:L was at a memorial service (too many deaths in his world the past 3-4 weeks), then came home and had a toasted turkey pepperjack on sourdough w/arugula; I had cheese and crackers (still working through tons of that… little by little some of the cheese gets moldy and i have to toss some, but I’m salvaging enough to not feel terrible about it. Most of it was leftover from thanksgiving and before, so.)
D: I made Jessica’s latest posted recipe: cream cheese pasta! I cut it in half and used spinach in place of kale. I also used more spinach, tomatoes, and green onion that she called for, cuz I always push the limit with veg in recipes. I topped it with crisped up parma ham, since we had a small unopened package left from the holidays. SO GOOD!!!
So glad you enjoyed it! When you get a minute would you leave a review on the post?