Monday, February 4, 2008

Pantry Raid

This week I'm trying something different. I'm going to try and plan ALL my meals around the things we already have in the pantry. That doesn't mean I won't be buying some fresh meat or produce but it does mean I won't be buying MOST of the stuff on my usual list. Check back soon... I'm off to take inventory. Yes, I'm literally going to write down an inventory sheet so that I can be more mindful of the ways that I waste our grocery money and then start planning my menus around using all this crap up!




And that's not all folks... I assure you that is not all!

18 comments:

MommyTime said...

We do this. We call it "budget weeks." The game is to buy nothing but dairy products, then once the veggies and fruits are used up, they can be purchased too, then once we've gotten through the random packages of soup, Japanese curry sauce, stringy rice noodles, etc., we can start buying again. Sometimes I do this for the freezer, other times for the pantry, occasionally for both. It's amazing. We've been known to make it three weeks without buying anything but milk, eggs, and fruit/veg. It is nice to finally use up that half-package of tortellini. And a little weird to have such a clean freezer. But I love it.

Mrs. Furious said...

MT,
Oh that actually makes it sound fun. I was just staring into the cabinets thinking "I don't want to do this!!!"

Okay maybe this can be an exciting challenge....

Heather said...

I'm guilty of this too, and maybe if I have the energy, I'll do the same. Our pantry is small, so it's not a big deal.

Mr Furious said...

I just got the twist in the title. Good one.

Robin said...

I really need to do this! It would save us money and clean up the pantry at the same time.

Mrs. Furious said...

OY! it is turning out to be a pretty overwhelming project! I keep walking in the pantry looking at the shelves and then walking out!

katieo said...

mrs f, you can do it.

Cara said...

Good idea. I have a lot of stuff I re-discovered that I had this weekend. My goal this week is also to get rid of some of it! haha.

Mrs. Furious said...

Okay I have surveyed what we have and although it is slightly overwhelming... I have planned this entire week. And I don't need to go to the store except for some milk, eggs, and a package of chicken and 2 avocados for Baby. So seriously I think my bill should be $18 this week.

Midge said...

We do this too...it actually is pretty nice and gets us out of our ruts of dinners/lunches.

We also used to have Sunday casserole surprise. Anything leftover from the week went into a casserole/crockpot along with anything from the pantry that was needed.

It was a nice way to use up the bits of sour cream, 1/2 head of broccoli, 1 tortilla, etc.

Mrs. Furious said...

Okay scratch that I don't need chicken... but I forgot about my waffles and Kid's sausage so I'm going to come out at about the same money output anyway.

Midge said...

Duh...forgot to mention the important parts of Sunday casserole, which was the true leftovers.

Like - the little bit of mac and cheese we saved but never ate. Or the other pasta we cooked, but ran out of sauce for.

Whatever was put in a tupperware from the week and then never finished.

This obviously has some limitations, but you never even noticed that little bit of tofu in the tuna noodle casserole!

Mrs. Furious said...

Midge,
LOL... I was like ...."It was a nice way to use up the bits of sour cream, 1/2 head of broccoli, 1 tortilla, etc.".... hmm not very filling... or much like a casserole.

MommyTime said...

Mrs F, If you do this for a month or so, you will be shocked by how much more sorted out your pantry/freezer are and by how much money you haven't spent on groceries. It's the most fun when the cupboard starts to look a little bare -- and yet creative meals ensue. Use Epicurious.com for recipes, b/c there you can search by main ingredients and find new ideas.

And you can make something great with a tidbit of broccoli and some sour cream, as long as you add a few noodles and a bit of chicken. :)

Mrs. Furious said...

MommyTime,
I used to cook this way all the time. (making stuff out of nothing not meal planning around the pantry) I found it super fulfilling in a creative sort of way and it lent itself to a lot of recipe creations. But since meal planning it has been all I can do to try and think of 5 things and I haven't been using anything up or even thinking about it.
I do look forward to emptying the cupboards!

Torey said...

I totally need to do this. Also, I would totally love to see your inventory! That would rock!!

Mrs. Furious said...

Torey,
yes I haven't forgotten that one. I kind of wanted to photo stuff or video... might have to be once I empty it and then rebuild it. But I'll definitely do it one of these days.

Cara said...

You should try this: http://www.snacksby.com/

Basically you put in what ingredients you have and then it comes up with a bunch of recipe ideas. It's pretty cool.

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