I think we all have this goal - at least most of us do. YES, I have cans of veggies and soups in the pantry - you may as well. I consider them convenience foods now. In a hurry - they are there and available. I have lots of frozen veggies - they are more like fresh to me.
I know not everyone cans. That is OK.
I know people often think buying fresh is too expensive. It really isn't if you consider health into it. Fresh and frozen are so much healthier. No added ingredients!
YES - making things from scratch takes a little more time - but oh my, the taste is just so much better and the expense is really not increased. It sure is cheaper making scratch and staying home than eating out!!!!!!
Think about making popcorn at home (not that packaged microwave stuff). You can make you own microwave popcorn if desired! Make cookies, cakes, brownies, muffins, sweet breads, cinnamon toast, popcorn balls, etc. Even potato chips are pretty darn easy to make. Roast chickpeas! Oh what a yummy and healthy crunchy snack.
IF you desire to have store bought chips - quit buying those little bags. Buy family sized packs and repackage yourself. Then when GONE they are GONE until next family shopping day!! (no special trips!)
Yes, we probably all have a few boxes of cereal around. I do, only because I have gotten them on clearance and I use them for snacks. I do NOT eat as basic cereal for breakfast. I also like using cereals in making trail mix type treats.
Think about making oatmeal (if you like it). Hot rice with butter and sweetener. Homemade granola. Homemade pancakes, waffles, breakfast sandwiches, breakfast burritos (all can be made ahead and froze). French toast. SO many choices for a cheap and healthy breakfast. Make ahead goodies and pop in the toaster or microwave for a quick heat and eat morning!
Actually I was always the person (as was Glen) who could eat whatever for breakfast. Soup, pizza, leftovers - it didn't matter. Who says it has to be breakfast food? We eat breakfast food for dinner!
Leftovers make great lunch options. Homemade soup, chili, casserole, food remade (like potato cakes, corn fritters, leftovers turned into fried rice). Sandwiches can be made cheaply at home. Nothing like a yummy grilled cheese and soup.
Make your own lunch-ables if you take lunch to work. Going out to eat everyday is expensive. Even if you just just spend $5 a day for lunch - that is $25-$30 a week that can be spent on other things like bills, debt, or stocking up.
Use what you have. You know what is in your food. Think about making up some tuna salad, egg salad, chicken salad from home. It will last over a few days. Make pasta salad, potato salad, fried rice, etc. So many options.
Use up all those leftovers in new ways. Turn them into casseroles or soups. Stretch your meat options with more veggies, whole grains and beans and pasta and rice.
AVOID eating out. Having dinner out is NOT cheap at all!!!!!!
Get creative with your cooking. Hopefully you can find yummy and inexpensive one pot meals that are easy to make for the entire family (I try listing them for you!). Add bread, biscuits, tortillas, crackers and maybe a salad and you have dinner.
There is NO limit to the options you have to make dinner at home. Utilize that crockpot or insta-pot. That makes life so much easier. Crockpot dinners are ready when you get home from work or after you have had a big day of working around the house. Insta-pot dinners take no time.
Well, what can I say? Pop is not good for us. I do love a fountain drink and I keep some pop on hand (mainly for company). Water is basically free (for me). I don't buy water - EVER. I filter my water and use tap. I refill bottles I have on hand. I keep a jug of cold water in the frig. I can add a little lemon or fruit juice to jazz it up. I drink iced tea. You can make tea -- hot or cold, coffee, or cold coffee, flavored water, juice for pennies. I have a soda stream machine that makes carbonated water - and I can add flavors and it is like having a pop! I only have this because I got it for $15 NEW at a yard sale many years back. Once in a while I will splurge and by their flavoring - but usually I just add fruit juice or those little individual water flavor packs.
Learn how to make your own morning coffee and add flavorings to make it special. A store bought cup of coffee can be $5 up! That is just CRAZY!!!!!!!
We can save so much money by just cooking at home and staying out of restaurants and buying all the junk!
You NEED to save money for whatever your reason? Well, rethink your spending. We all spend on so many unnecessary things. Just because you WANT it - doesn't mean you should BUY it!!!!!! Seriously.
Think about your goals - your future - what is REALLY important.
I would think having an emergency fund, being debt free, and having a stocked pantry in case of whatever emergency - would be more important than instant gratification on eating out or that expensive morning coffee!!!!!!!!!
Think about it.
Your health and the welfare of your family should come first.
GET CREATIVE AND SAVE