Tuesday, October 8, 2013

What's For Dinner? Check the Freezer

Living a frugal life requires embracing home cooked food in my mind.  And as I prepared my weekly shopping list, dinners were built around what is already in my freezer.  If you are like me, there are likely a few leftovers tucked away or a "deal" you bought months ago.  Instead of handing over cash each week for more food, challenge yourself to use up what is in your freezer first.  Extra ingredients are likely needed, but most likely the total cost will be less than purchasing what you need for an entire meal.  A few freezer inspired meals on our list include:

  • pork chops in the slow cooker paired with couscous and roasted veggies;
  • chili with toasted cheese sandwiches; and
  • ginger and cilantro lentil soup.
My current goal is to use up everything that is currently calling our fridge freezer home.  Once it is empty, I'll give it a good cleaning and return to normal.  This is my favorite way to prevent a kitchen storage area from hiding something past its expiration date.  Once were done with the freezer, the pantry will be next, followed by the chest freezer in the garage.

So the next time you find yourself asking what's for dinner, skip the drive-thru or grocery deli or the standards you always buy.  Find out what you already have and build around it.  You'll maximize your dollars, enjoy healthier home cooked meals, and tread a little less on planet Earth.

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