Frugal Shopping made into Convenience Cooking

Couponing has brought my frugality to a whole new level. I feel like I now have all the pieces to the puzzle to truly bless my family with smart food choices. One of my frugal tips is BUY when the price is at its lowest. I regularly buy meat, potatoes, onions and bread in bulk when at their lowest price. These are things for which I do not regularly have coupons. Then I come home and process these for easy use. Here is a breakdown of a recent bulk buying day:

Split Chicken Breast @ $.88/lb : I bought 3 family size packages. I came home skinned, and deboned the chicken, making nice boneless, skinless chicken breasts in portions for our family into the freezer. I then took the skin and bones (with some meat left on), added celery, onion, sage and basil. (I use carrots if I have them.) I brought it to a boil, covered and simmered for two hours. Sometimes I do this and freeze the broth for future use. This particular day, I pulled the remaining meat from the bones, discarded the scraps, skimmed the fat, ran the veggies thru the blender, put it all back together along with noodles and had soup for supper. YUMMY

10lbs Russet Potatoes, $2.99: I took out the 12 largest potatoes for twice baked potatoes and put the rest away for later use. With these 12, I scrubbed them clean, and put them in the oven at 350 for one hour to bake. Once done, I cut each potato in half and scooped out the pulp into a large bowl. Next step, I just guess at the amount and taste. I added 2-4 tablespoons butter, some salt and pepper then began to mash the potatoes, next added approximately 10 oz. sour cream and mixed well. Finally, I stirred in 2 cups shredded cheese. All of this gets put back into the reserved shell halves. I top it all with a scant sprinkling of real bacon bits. Everything gets placed onto a baking sheet(s) and placed in the freezer to quick freeze. Once frozen (maybe an hour) put into freezer bags. These are great to pull out a specific portion and heat in the oven for 20 – 30 minutes as needed.

Onions, I can't remember the price I paid for these. But do want to share a tip. I did not do this on this trip, because I have plenty in the freezer now. I like to chop a lot of onions at once, mostly because I do not like to chop onions! Usually I do it in the food processor. Once chopped, use an old ice tray to freeze in portions. Once frozen, remove from ice trays to a freezer bag. Great convenience!

Ground beef

  • 1-1/12 lb. portions in the freezer
  • Brown a large quantity of ground beef, bag in meal size portions
  • Make Hamburger Patties, wrap individually in wax paper, place in gallon freezer bag for the freezer

1 more tip before I go. Anytime you cook or plan to cook, consider making double batches. I've tried this and it works out wonderfully. Same pots and pans, same clean up, double the reward! Here are a few things I've done recently: spaghetti sauce and pancakes. Both freeze well.

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Jessica and Kim said...

Yay Kim! Just one Question - why do we blenderize the veggies for the soup? :)

Anonymous said...

Great question! I rough cut the veggies for the stock, meaning large chunks that would be too big for soup. Second reason is simple. If I "blenderize" the veggies, the kiddies do not see them!

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