Pantry Challenge

Pantry Challenge – Winter of 2012

As I was looking through various blogs, I found a pantry challenge.  IT DOES NOT mean only eating out of the pantry or freezer.  It means looking at what’s in the pantry or freezer before shopping or planning a menu.

My goals for the pantry challenge are:

1.  Lower my grocery bill

We’ve been spending too much at the grocery store.  I want to lower that bill.  So does hubby.

2.  Clean out the pantry and freezer

We need to get that pantry cleaned out, so if I cook dinners based on what I have in the pantry, that will help us with the grocery bill.  This week we have had baked spaghetti, which used up a half box of spaghetti sitting in the pantry, and already cooked hamburger in the freezer.  We have also had peanut butter pancakes.  I used up some white whole wheat flour that was not being used.  Another meal was veggie beef soup.  In that meal, we used up more of the hamburger meat from the freezer and half a bag of frozen vegetables hanging around in the freezer.  We will have chicken scampi later this week to use up some of the frozen chicken tenderloins that have made their home in our freezer.

Next week’s meals will use a whole roasting chicken, taking up room in the fridge’s freezer.  We will also use the cooked chicken for soup the next day.  That soup contains corn and black beans.  I have those cans in the pantry, which will save us money.  It also calls for chicken broth.  Again I have that in the pantry.  The only expense I may have for that soup is the orzo pasta.  I will have to check the pantry to ensure I don’t have that.

3.  Once a month cooking

I would love to do some once-a-month cooking.  To do that, I need to get the deep freezer cleaned out.  Since I make most of the dinners, I don’t always want to cook when I get home.  On those days, I like to stop at a fast-food restaurant that is both unhealthy and cheap.  I would love to have backup meals in the freezer for the days I know I will be tired.  Also, with it being winter, the weather is unpredictable.  It might take me longer to get home, so I would like to have the option of a frozen meal that my hubby can pull out of the freezer.

Those are my three main goals for the pantry challenge.  As I navigate the challenge, I think I will come up with more goals than those 3.

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