Pantry in our travel trailer we lived in for 2 years.

Wondering how 2 adults and 2 kids are eating for $42 this week? I’m sure plenty of ultra-frugal folks and queens of couponing do this all the time, but I usually spend closer to $100 a week….so what’s the trick? I’m doing almost all of my grocery shopping from my own pantry and fridge this week!

First I grabbed a notebook and pen and went around writing down what things I had on hand in 5 categories: protein, veggies/fruit, grains/breads, dairy and other. To my surprise we have a HUGE variety in the grains section, not only do we have tortillas, wraps and bread, but we also have flours, wheat germ, rice, millet I didn’t know I had, and even more! I had more veggies than I realized too. The one category that was rather low was protein, although we have 4 kinds of beans and then lentils. I do cook quite a bit with beans, but don’t really feel like having beans every single day this week, so I bought some hamburger meat.

Reasons to eat from the pantry:

  1. Waste less food. I know if I fill my fridge up with fresh food, that fresh food (especially produce) will look more tempting that the older stuff making it more likely to never get eaten. Also, the fuller the fridge, the easier things get stuffed in the back of it and lost.
  2. Have emptier more organized cupboards.
  3. Save money. Because we’ll mostly be eating from what we already have, I was able to spend just under $42 on food at the store.

Spent just under $42

So here’s the menu plan.

Breakfasts: oatmeal, smoothies, eggs, toast, breakfast rice, muffin recipes that use up leftover milk, sour cream and yogurt, like these banana muffins.

Lunches: sandwiches (grilled cheese, egg salad or chicken),  soup, leftovers


  • Black beans and rice, chips, salsa, cheese and avocados
  • Meal with some friends, I’m bringing mashed potatoes and a veggie.
  • SUPERBOWL at friend’s house! I took popcorn and banana bread
  • Taco salad with stretched taco meat
  • Pizza pasta and salad
  • Chili and corn bread
  • Leftovers

Are you shopping your pantry this week?

Oh, and I almost forgot, we have a new post at our ministry blog, What We’re Doing…in Pictures.

Linked at Organizing Junkie.


Is it Friday already? This week has flown by for me!

I don’t have any pictures of my food waste…but believe me I threw out a lot! I tried eating up most of our food before our trip over Christmas, but didn’t quite get it all eaten and ended up throwing out a lot of produce, some salsa, mashed potatoes and yogurt. :(

On a brighter note I had fun checking our mail after being gone and finding all these fun freebies in the mailbox!


And don’t forget to enter my giveaway for The Money Saving Mom’s Budget!!

This post is shared at The Frugal Girl’s Food Waste Friday.

If you’ve been checking out my blog lately you know that I’ve started participating in The Frugal Girl’s Food Waste Friday. The theory is that the humiliation of having to share with everyone what you tossed will make you think twice about it. And I think it’s a great idea,  however, I seem to need something else to help me not waste so much food. So I’ve started writing down what things I have in the fridge that need to be eaten. I write down leftovers from a meal or any produce that won’t last much longer. I write them on my white board (see picture) where they’re really visible. Hopefully this will help me to not forget about those things that always seem to get pushed way back in the fridge. And once something gets eaten I get to check it off the list (and checking things off of lists is always fun!).

If you’re new here and you’re thinking, “That kitchen picture looks kinda like a travel trailer.” Well it is! Go here to get the grand tour of my little home!

This post is shared at Tammy’s Recipes for Kitchen Tip Tuesday.

My last food waste post I didn’t even bother to list all I had wasted it was so much, but I’m very excited because this week I did a little better! Not that I didn’t have any waste. I

My Salad of Leftovers!

threw out a few little shriveled and moldy potatoes, and some crackers with peanut butter on them that Gracia never finished eating. But on the positive side, I had some black beans leftover sitting in the fridge and decided if I didn’t want to have to make a post about tossing them too, I’d better hurry up and use them. So I seasoned them with the same seasonings  I use for taco meat and made a nice taco salad for my lunch. And I used some tomatoes that need to be used and tortilla chip crumbs form the bottom of the bag. The salad was pretty good, so we ended up having it for supper another night. I still have some beans left and I think I’ll use them in burritos this weekend.

And remember today is your last day to be entered in the dish cloth giveaway! You could win these 3 colorful 100 % cotton crocheted  dishcloths! Just subscribe to my blog today. The subscription box is in the upper right hand corner. I’ll contact the randomly chosen winner via email. If I don’t hear back within 48 hours with a mailing address, I’ll have to choose another winner. And I’m only shipping within the United States.




This post is shared at The Frugal Girl for Food Waste Friday.

Wasted chili and half a sandwich

Wanna know what I wasted this week:

  • About 1 serving size of chili
  • 1/2 of a sandwich
  • some rolls that got soggy
  • and some sprouts. We didn’t even get to eat them, I was still rinsing them and all, but I put them on top of the fridge one day and I think maybe it was too hot for them up there, because they got all slimy. =(

This is shared at The Frugal Girl, Food Waste Friday.

Today instead of a Frugal Photo Friday, I have an UNfrugal photo, actually two. They’re both of some wasted food.

Sour Cream that was left out of the fridge way to long, veggie soup that I got tired of eating as a leftover so I just kept ignoring it, and some leftover oatmeal of Gracia’s that I put in the fridge thinking I could give it to her later and forgot.

And these apples are also Gracia’s. I thought if I put them in a bag in the fridge I could cut off any spots she bit into and use the rest in apple muffins or something…but as you can see they’re not yummy apple muffins, they’re still just half eaten brown apples.

The Frugal Girl every Friday posts pictures of food she’s wasted. Her reason is to help her not waste as much. I’ve thought about doing that, but been putting it off, mostly because I’m scared I’ll be too ashamed of all my wasted food, but then again maybe that shame will encourage me to not waste so much!! So I’m going to try really hard not to waste much this month and to share my results you all (not necessarily on Fridays though). I have to remind myself that wasting food isn’t just plain wasteful, it’s also like throwing money in the trash. After all the food I throw away was bought with money, and I claim to be frugal. I guess I should take my own advice on how to not have so much wasted food.

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