Frugal Foods: Cheap Eats, Thrifty Menus, Cost Cutting Cooking Tips

Frugal Foods...thrifty cooking, budget menus, cheap eats, money saving kitchen tips, and help for cutting your grocery bill. Follow along with our everyday eating as we share how we eat well for less.

Apr 24, 2019

Frugal Foods Tip of the Day: Sun Tea

Make iced tea easy and cheap. Fill a half gallon jar with water and add four tea bags. Set it outside for a few hours, preferably in the sun. Chill or serve over ice. If you are serving over ice, you may want to add another tea bag to the jar, as the ice will dilute it. Use generic or store brand tea bags, and this costs just a few pennies per jar. If you like if flavored, you can add lemon or lime juice, a little flavoring extract or syrup, or whatever strikes your fancy.

Apr 22, 2019

Frugal Foods Tip of the Day: Using Leftover Pot Roast for Soup

Pot Roast Beef and Vegetable Soup: When we make a beef pot roast with carrots, onions, and potatoes, the last of it goes into making a batch of soup. I dice up whatever meat and veggies are left, and put it in the slow cooker, along with whatever juices accumulated while cooking it. Then, I add additional vegetables and seasonings to fill out the soup, and let it simmer.

Apr 16, 2019

Frugal Foods Tip of the Day: Express Rice Cook Times

It takes a lot longer to cook rice casserole in the Crock Pot Express electric pressure cooker than it does to cook plain rice. Plain rice, I simply hit the Rice button, which is 12 minutes on low pressure. For a rice, chicken, and tomatoes casserole, I upped it to 15 minutes—and the rice was still hard. (I started with cooked chicken, so raw chicken wasn’t an issue.) The Stew button gives a much better result, cooking it on high pressure for about 25 minutes.

Apr 15, 2019

Frugal Foods Tip of the Day: Pepper Prepping

Prep peppers. When I buy fresh peppers, I like to clean them and get them ready for use right away. With mild peppers, such as bells, I quarter them and remove the stem, seeds, and white pith. Then, I cut a slice off the top and the bottom. Those irregular shaped top and bottom pieces go into stir fries, soups, and other cooked dishes. The remaining large slabs of pepper get sliced into neat strips, which we eat raw at meals and as snacks. I do the same with jalapenos. I like to prep hotter peppers in advance, too, but those we don’t eat raw!

Apr 10, 2019

Pork Roast and Vegetables: Easy to Fix, Frugal Meat and Potatoes Meal

Pork roast and vegetables star in tonight's frugal dinner. It's especially good when the "meat and potatoes" crew is tired of casseroles. They don't need to know it is any easy to fix, one pot meal.

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Apr 09, 2019

Frugal Foods Tip of the Day: Potatoes!

Cook up a large batch of potatoes. Use them throughout the week for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. We slice or cube them to fry for breakfast, or grate for hash browns. They are the staple side dish with most any meat and vegetables meal. I also use them in soups, burrito fillings, and salads.

Apr 07, 2019

Frugal Foods Quote of the Day

Go to the farmers market and buy food there. You'll get something that's delicious. It's discouraging that this seems like such an elitist thing. It's not. ~ Alice Waters

Apr 04, 2019

Frugal Foods Quote of the Day

Food is not just eating energy. It's an experience. ~ Guy Fieri

Apr 01, 2019

Thrifty Grab and Go Breakfasts

Simple breakfasts can be tasty, quick and easy, and thrifty. Here are a couple of examples:

~ Slice of cheese, apple, whole wheat crackers, and milk. ~ Handful of peanuts, banana, graham crackers, and milk.

Mar 30, 2019

Frugal Foods Tip: Make Sun Tea

Three tea bags added to a large juice-bottle of water, and set in the sun for a few hours makes a cheap beverage. Tea bags cost only a few cents each. This is even cheaper than drinking water—if you would otherwise be buying bottled water. We are often in areas where the water is safe to drink, but we don’t care for the flavor. Making tea with it masks it. Although you can get special ice tea jars, we just recycle a half gallon juice bottle or pickle jar.

Mar 29, 2019

It's Asparagus Season!

Asparagus season is here, and that means huge savings on this spring veggie. It's good for us. It's tasty. But, oh, out of season it is terribly spendy. But, right now, the local grocery store--Kroger--has it on sale for only 99 cents a pound!

Mar 15, 2019

Fried Apples - Taste Like Caramel Apples!

Fried apples, caramelized with a drizzle of pancake syrup and a little butter. Yum! My husband likes something sweet for breakfast. These fried apples

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Mar 14, 2019

Make Raw Vegetables a Frugal Choice

Fresh, raw, veggies! They have the reputation of being expensive. But, really, that doesn’t have to be true. The biggest thing we do to save on our produce

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Mar 12, 2019

Enchilada Salad Plate – Frugal, Tasty, Healthy, and Easy

Enchilada Salad Plate started with one of those bagged, ready to eat salad kits. We made the most of it by adding Mexican restaurant dinner leftovers. Frugal to the core! Tasty and super healthy, too.

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Mar 11, 2019

Tip of the Day: Hurray for Hot Dogs!

Franks to the rescue! Keep a package of wieners handy in the freezer. They can fill in for breakfast sausage, a quick snack, or meat with a meal. While not the best nutritionally, they get points for being cheap, easy, quick to fix, versatile, keep well in fridge or freezer, and most people like them.

Mar 07, 2019

Each Thrifty Food Tip Here Can Free Up Money to Use for Something Else

Put a thrifty food tip to use and watch your food savings grow. The money you save being frugal in the kitchen can be buy other things you need -- or want. Free up those dollars for something else.

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Mar 04, 2019

Thrifty Food Tips – Just What You Need to Cut Your Food Costs

Thrifty food tips are little nuggets of info, hints to help you spend less on food. You can eat well, and have easy, nutritious meals, and not spend a fortune at the grocery store. These will help.

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Mar 02, 2019

Share a Frugal Recipe, Money Saving Kitchen Tip, or Budget Food Story

Have a frugal recipe, cheap eating story, tip for saving money on groceries, article about cheap meals or inexpensive foods, or thrifty menu to share? Join in. Tell us how you cut your food expenses.

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Feb 28, 2019

Corn Chowder: Thick and Satisfying Soup, Topped with Crisp Bacon

Corn chowder. Tonight's frugal supper was steaming hot, richly satisfying chowder. I asked my husband what he'd like that included bacon. I knew before he answered. It's his favorite hearty soup.

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Feb 27, 2019

Frugal Foods Tip - Save Those Stale Chips!

Recrisp potato chips, tortilla chips, corn chips, crackers, pretzels, and similar snacks in the microwave. Spread about two cups of chips onto a plate or shallow dish. Microwave for about one minute. Let them cool for a couple minutes before eating. Microwaves differ a lot, so check the time after about 30 seconds to make sure they aren’t starting to burn. If your microwave doesn’t have a rotating plate, when you check them at 30 seconds, give the dish half a turn.

Feb 26, 2019

Frozen Pizza: Dinner for Less than the Delivery Guy's Tip

Frozen pizza is a menu staple for weekend suppers. We buy the cheap kind or what's on sale, and add toppings. It's a tasty, frugal alternative to take out or delivery pizza, and just as fast and easy.

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Feb 23, 2019

Halibut Dinner – Free Food From the Entertainment Budget

This halibut dinner includes herbed fish, sweet potatoes, and broccoli. The fish and sweet potatoes come out of the entertainment budget. From the food budget perspective, they are free food.

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Feb 21, 2019

Frugal Food Tips -- Easy Ways to Cut Your Food Expenses

Frugal food tips to help you spend less on groceries. Hints to cut your grocery expenses and keep more money in your pocket. Each tip can save you money.

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Feb 18, 2019

Money Saving Food Tips to Help You Stay Within Your Budget

Use these money saving food tips to spend less. Little savings here and there really add up. Try these hints and helps and see how much easier it is cut your food budget.

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Feb 17, 2019

Spam Lunch Meat: We Enjoy this Classic, Economical Canned Meat Product

I’ve always enjoyed Spam® lunch meat, but what spurred this article was a recent purchase. Spam® generally costs about $2.50 per can. We found some overstock, with a good use-by date, for 50 cents a can. We’ll be enjoying Classic Spam® for a good long time.

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Feb 14, 2019

Each Frugal Food Tip Adds Up to Save You a Bunch on Groceries

A frugal food tip is a little thing. But, it can make a huge difference in how much it costs you to feed your family. Use these hints and see how much easier it is to spend less on groceries.

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Feb 11, 2019

Frugal Foods Tip - Use High Dollar Coupons

Look for and use coupons with a high value. Friday's shopping included using a $10 off coupon. It was a store coupon. The pack of coupons was right there in the meat case, next to the ham. The ham was originally $18.05. With the ten dollars off coupon, we paid less than half price.

Feb 09, 2019

Win Free Watkins Vanilla and More!

Enter to Win Free Watkins Vanilla! It's hard to get more frugal than FREE! We use a lot of Watkins products because their superior quality makes them excellent value--pure extracts and flavorings, organic herbs and seasonings, natural skin care, natural cleaning products, and old-time remedies. Enter to win the monthly drawing for a free assortment of Watkins products valued at $100. There's no purchase required. http://www.ea6779.com

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Jan 24, 2019

Frugal Foods Tip of the Day - Sauce It Up!

A dash or two of seasoning sauce can transform a dish from leftovers to a new meal. Example, a basic rice and ground beef mix -- one day put soy sauce on it, another day put a Mexican sauce on it, and the third day, try a fruity salad dressing.

Jan 22, 2019

Frugal Foods Tip of the Day - Compare within Chains

When comparison shopping grocery stores, compare different locations of the same store chain. The exact neighborhood and the size of the store can make a difference in what products are available, the quality of them, and the prices.

Jan 09, 2019

No Grocery Shopping for a Month - Day 8

The first week of our no grocery shopping challenge is behind us. So far, so good. All we bought for groceries is milk. We still have some fresh produce.

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Jan 08, 2019

No Grocery Shopping for a Month - Day 7

I did some extra prep today that will save me time and money over the next few days. I sauteed an entire family size package of boneless, skinless chicken

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Jan 08, 2019

No Grocery Shopping for a Month - Day 6

My maternal grandparents were German. This menu is typical of what we ate as kids. I grew up in a home where we ate potatoes at least twice a day, sometimes

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Jan 08, 2019

No Grocery Shopping for a Month - Day 5

We went back to town today—specifically to have breakfast out. Yes, we commented as we were pulling out of the drive-way that eating out is one way to

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Jan 08, 2019

No Grocery Shopping for a Month - Day 4

At this job location, Friday is our day to go to town, run errands, and eat out. We usually buy groceries. Today, we only bought milk. Is eating out frugal?

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Jan 06, 2019

No Grocery Shopping for a Month - Day 2

We’ve only been buying groceries once a week. So, the second day of the no grocery shopping challenge went smoothly. It was pretty much cooking as usual--a

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Jan 06, 2019

No Grocery Shopping for a Month - Day 1

The first day of our month-long no food shopping challenge is here! Though, we have such a well-stocked fridge and pantry that it was cooking and eating

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Dec 31, 2018

The No Grocery Shopping Challenge! We’re Eating What We Have on Hand

It’s time for a no grocery shopping challenge. We aren’t going to buy groceries for a month. Instead, we’ll clean out the fridge, the freezer, and the pantry. We’ll clean up, clean out, and be creative. It’s also an excellent way to give the food budget a break!

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Dec 30, 2018

After Christmas Grocery Deals

We often find frugal foods the days immediately following Christmas. Candy, cookies, baking supplies, and holiday foods can be fifty percent or more off

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Dec 28, 2018

Christmas Leftovers Gumbo

Gumbo. Our Christmas leftovers screamed, Gumbo! Ham. Smokey sausage. Shrimp. Krab. Bell peppers and celery. With a package of okra in the freezer, I knew

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Dec 26, 2018

Christmas Leftovers

It’s the day after Christmas and we are having leftovers. We normally cook extra, so there is enough for at least a second meal. We don’t consider those

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Dec 06, 2018

Cleaning the Fridge Inspired Today's Frugal Meals

It’s clean out the fridge and defrost the freezer day. So, burritos for lunch and vegetable beef soup for supper. Burritos and soup have got to be some

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Dec 04, 2018

Cheap Breakfast Ideas

Cheap breakfasts always throw me for a loop. I never know what to fix that my kids will eat. I don't have a lot of time. I need some ideas for foods that

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Dec 03, 2018

Freeze Onions

Can you freeze onions or will they last chopped in a container in the refrigerator for a week? If you can freeze them, do you just put them in raw? I tried

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Nov 25, 2018

Family Dollar Savings

We saved a bunch on groceries yesterday, by shopping at Family Dollar. Some of the items were on our shopping list. Others were staples that we stock up

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Nov 20, 2018

Today's Frugal Food Meals

Today’s frugal meals feature breakfast burritos; hamburger patties; and macaroni and cheese. They were a mix of easy fixes, leftovers, and a doctored up

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Nov 19, 2018

Today's Easy Frugal Foods Meals

Some days, easy does it. Like our breakfast this morning of cold cereal and ready to eat sausages. Which, was followed by a lunch of leftovers. And, ended

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Nov 09, 2018

Tomato Soup and Grilled Cheese Sandwiches – A Classic Frugal Supper

Cream of tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches. Tonight's frugal supper is a classic. Some thrifty meals never go out of style and this easy to fix soup and sandwich staple is one of them.

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Nov 08, 2018

Wine with Dinner: Even Frugal Folks Enjoy a Bottle of Inexpensive Wine

Wine with dinner? We just finished a pleasant meal of spaghetti with meatballs, green beans, garlic bread, and a glass of wine. Having wine with the meal added a lot. It added a more relaxed atmosphere. It added a romantic touch. It made an ordinary meal special.

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