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Old 03-31-2014, 08:37 PM
Location: North Carolina
1,764 posts, read 2,225,073 times
Reputation: 1866


Like many other posters here, I cook at home quite often. I don't necessarily do it for a cost savings but because I'm concerned about the way food is processed and preserved for longer shelf life. This is not a concern when I cook and bake from scratch.

I also like tea, hot and cold, and make it at home. I've had to recently switch to decaf and enjoy that too. I rarely have coffee but someone gifted me a Keurig so I can have a cup of decaf coffee every now and again.

My little ones are still in the coloring stage so we color a lot of pictures and save them. We use them to wrap presents for our friends later and they all the personalized "wrapping paper."

We are big on recycling and re-purposing items around the house for projects. Anything we save goes into a jar for something special we all agree to get for the family.

We go through closets and dresses about every quarter and give friends with younger children items that no longer fit. It beats the few dollars we would get selling it to a resell shop. We also have friends give us items from their older kids.

This season we are making another attempt at container gardening. Vegetables are a big hit around here and I make salads every day. Hopefully, we have better luck this year and produce some vegetables on the deck. That will be a tremendous savings over the cost of organic vegetables in the grocery store.

I also have a juice extractor so I make fresh, healthy vegetable (and sometimes fruit) juices for the kids. They love it and it's a significant savings over organic vegetable juice (which isn't very stable for long shelf life). This past Summer we started buying frozen fruits to make our own smoothies. They are delicious.

Great thread!
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Old 03-31-2014, 10:30 PM
Location: Silicon Valley
16,736 posts, read 20,490,725 times
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I'm a super frugal shopper, but as far as stuff I make that saves me money:

I like decaf/diet green iced tea and used to buy the big jugs of Arizona decaf/diet green iced tea. It was hard to find decaf green tea bags any cheaper where I lived, since I like to use 16 bags for one gallon.

Then I found that Trader Joes carries them, which was a bit cheaper than buying ready-made. THEN of all places, I discovered Walmart carries them! I get twice as many bags for the same price Trader Joe's sells them for. So, decaf green tea bags at Walmart, is the best deal I've found so far. I wish they didn't package each bag separately. Such a waste of paper - and time tearing them all open lol!

I then add Splenda to the iced tea, which I buy in bulk from Costco, usually.

Other than making my own decaf/diet iced green tea - which I drink most of the day long - I think my next big money saver is making my own chicken broth, because I use it in everything. I pressure cook whole chickens, take the meat off the bones, then pressure cook the bones with some veggies, and the "jelly" I get when I pressure cook the chickens. I chill the jelly/juice from the chickens overnight first - and scrape the fat off in the morning.

I then pressure can the broth in quart jars.

Anyway, this is not only cheaper than buying broth, but because it also is made from the chicken "jelly" it's really healthy, too.
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Old 03-31-2014, 10:36 PM
Location: San Francisco Bay Area
11,411 posts, read 13,961,436 times
Reputation: 10924
We cook at home, most nights. This saves us $.
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Old 03-31-2014, 11:05 PM
Location: San Antonio, TX
10,860 posts, read 18,892,348 times
Reputation: 25110
I can't eat most of my big money-savers anymore. Homemade pizza and rolls, cookies and cakes, Chinese food, and things like a big pot of beans or lentil soup are all out of the question for me.

I am still making my own yogurt...a gallon of milk, a few cups of powdered milk, and the mason jars to store it in are all you need. I've noticed the Greek yogurt at the store has less carbs than my homemade yogurt though, so I may quit making it at some point.
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Old 04-01-2014, 05:10 AM
Location: The Carolinas
1,987 posts, read 1,903,623 times
Reputation: 6010
Y'all have made me hungry.
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Old 04-01-2014, 05:59 AM
Location: Houston, TX
13,148 posts, read 7,398,957 times
Reputation: 27260
My husband and I rarely go out to eat. I have to start bugging him a lot before he'll relent and we go, so eating everything at home save us a lot of money and is healthier. Overall, we drown in homemade coffee and unsweetened tea. We don't do that Keurig thing-it's very weak coffee and too expensive. We have a plain drip pot that sees HEAVY use. We also grill meat frequently, especially steaks. Steak at a restaurant are inferior quality and insanely overpriced. Just yesterday I picked up Porterhouse steaks for $5.99/lb and T-Bones for $4.99/lb. Yum!
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Old 04-01-2014, 06:04 AM
Location: North Carolina
1,764 posts, read 2,225,073 times
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For steak eaters...this is fabulous. It makes an awesome leftover sandwich too!

Savory garlic marinated steak
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Old 04-01-2014, 06:44 AM
Location: NE San Antonio
1,642 posts, read 3,466,276 times
Reputation: 1428
Soup! I can make a giant pot from leftovers and pantry items for next to nothing. Make my own broth too.

When I need a more than a cup of mayo for a recipe, I make own, costs just pennies and very easy
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Old 04-01-2014, 09:25 AM
Location: Up North in God's Country
670 posts, read 760,916 times
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Default Re: Savings

Originally Posted by mainebrokerman View Post
i save a ton of money cooking at home,,,i buy the whole primals and cut them myself,,,even grind my own burger..

and, im a road-kill opportunist,,,, turkeys, deer, grouse,,,if one of them critters should run into my car,,,, i have an option to keep it..

i will usually breast, or quarter the critter beside the road and put it in my freezer when i get home
I have a friend Up North who does this too. They even eat bear. I grew up in the North, so I've had all these meats, but I'm not a big meat eater. Although...I can't resist venison sausage!
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Old 04-01-2014, 09:32 AM
Location: Mt. Lebanon
1,793 posts, read 1,825,639 times
Reputation: 1745
I make everything from scratch also. Also following the sales. Also taking the bus to work. this saves me in car insurance bc I only drive the car for leisure and I save on gas too because I only use the car in the weekend.
Also in winter I use a humidifier to save on the heat and I don't have an AC but I have "thermal" curtains that keep the heat in in winter and keep the house cool in summer.
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