Author Topic: Making foods you would normally buy  (Read 11860 times)

RichHarvest

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Making foods you would normally buy
« on: January 05, 2018, 09:07:52 PM »
Gluten-free wraps are always crumbly, not large enough, and expensive, so I decided to find a recipe online and make my own. I also ended up making GF banana bread and will try regular bread too since the variety I normally buy is $6/loaf.

Tonight I made mayonnaise in the stand-mixer from my hen's egg, dijon mustard, salt, apple cider vinegar, and canola oil.

I've recently felt empowered to make various foods that I might normally buy, since the component ingredients tend to be cheap (I'm sure if I factored in my time, the tradeoff is not worth it, but it's a relaxing activity for me that replaces mindless web browsing). It's also nice to know what ingredients are in my food, using organic ingredients when possible, or reducing the amount of sugar/salt in a recipe.

Are there any foods out there that make sense from a financial standpoint to make yourself vs. buying? Anything that's particularly easy to make that you wouldn't normally think to do?

My next venture will be trying my hand at DIY ketchup in the slow cooker.

inline five

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #1 on: January 05, 2018, 09:19:01 PM »
We make our own pesto because we grow a ton of basil. Ends up being pretty inexpsive to make yourself.

I make pizza dough, that is also very easy.

letired

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #2 on: January 05, 2018, 09:19:19 PM »
I get excited about making things I have a hard time finding locally. I used to live in a city with a lovely classic german-style butcher shop that sold delightful fresh sauerkraut and horseradish. I haven't been able to find anything like it in my current city, so I've made my own sauerkraut (cheating a little, I inoculate with some of the liquid from the sauerkraut I used to get), and I'm in the research stage of making my own horseradish.

+1 making pesto!

less4success

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #3 on: January 05, 2018, 09:26:05 PM »
We make our own pesto because we grow a ton of basil. Ends up being pretty inexpsive to make yourself.

Do you use pine nuts? Or something cheaper/easier to find (or maybe even produce)?

Not Your Monkey

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #4 on: January 05, 2018, 09:27:40 PM »
I liked reading the book Make the Bread, Buy the Butter by Jennifer Reese. She gives you a breakdown of about how much it would cost to make a particular product along with how much time/effort it takes.

Things we like to make: bread, yogurt, hot sauce, pickles, sauerkraut, kim chi, jam, apple sauce/apple butter, kombucha, tomato sauce, pesto, tomatillo sauce

big_slacker

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #5 on: January 05, 2018, 09:32:18 PM »
I love making bread, this is my fav:

https://minimalistbaker.com/7-ingredient-muesli-bread/

Gimesalot

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #6 on: January 05, 2018, 09:39:59 PM »
Pasta is easy and delicious to make

newgirl

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #7 on: January 05, 2018, 09:44:19 PM »
Gluten-free wraps are always crumbly, not large enough, and expensive, so I decided to find a recipe online and make my own. I also ended up making GF banana bread and will try regular bread too since the variety I normally buy is $6/loaf.

Tonight I made mayonnaise in the stand-mixer from my hen's egg, dijon mustard, salt, apple cider vinegar, and canola oil.

I've recently felt empowered to make various foods that I might normally buy, since the component ingredients tend to be cheap (I'm sure if I factored in my time, the tradeoff is not worth it, but it's a relaxing activity for me that replaces mindless web browsing). It's also nice to know what ingredients are in my food, using organic ingredients when possible, or reducing the amount of sugar/salt in a recipe.

Are there any foods out there that make sense from a financial standpoint to make yourself vs. buying? Anything that's particularly easy to make that you wouldn't normally think to do?

My next venture will be trying my hand at DIY ketchup in the slow cooker.

Would you share your GF recipe for banana bread? My toddler has a wheat allergy and I think she would like banana bread :)

inline five

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #8 on: January 05, 2018, 09:46:10 PM »
We make our own pesto because we grow a ton of basil. Ends up being pretty inexpsive to make yourself.

Do you use pine nuts? Or something cheaper/easier to find (or maybe even produce)?

Yes pine nuts from a place that sells them by the pound. We were going to try a different nut to save money but never got around to it.

inline five

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #9 on: January 05, 2018, 09:47:22 PM »
Pasta is easy and delicious to make

At $1/box it's so inexpenve to buy, not worth making. IMO. I think you get 16oz in a box.

FINate

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #10 on: January 05, 2018, 09:52:24 PM »
Things we make from scratch instead of buying: sourdough bread, pudding, tomato sauce (seasonal), fajita/taco seasoning mix, pancake mix, waffle mix, hot chocolate mix, popcorn (vs. microwave packs), fancy crackers, croissants (rarely - time intensive to laminate dough), pizza dough and wood fired pizza, various cleaning products.

Hula Hoop

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #11 on: January 06, 2018, 12:43:32 AM »
Since I live in Italy and don't have access to many of the foods of my youth I make a lot of things that others might buy ie. pancakes and cornbread from scratch (sooo easy - no idea why anyone uses mixes), tacos, fajitas, clam chowder, bagels, various kinds of muffins (English, blueberry, corn), all kinds of pies.  We also do home made pesto when basil is in season and then freeze it in cubes in ice cube trays.  Just ate our last 3 cubes from last summer a couple of nights ago in fact.

I've also made pizza from scratch even though I live in the land of pizza.  I did it for my daughter's sleepover birthday party at her request.  I laughed at the irony of a foreigner teaching a bunch of Italian kids how to make pizza.  I probably wouldn't do it again though even though it's surprisingly easy as this is something that is cheap and plentiful here.  TBH I'm totally sick of pizza. I want to try home made pasta though as it's really pricey even here and looks easy to make.  Do you use a pasta machine or just a rolling pin?

mspym

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #12 on: January 06, 2018, 01:31:16 AM »
We make our own pesto because we grow a ton of basil. Ends up being pretty inexpsive to make yourself.

Do you use pine nuts? Or something cheaper/easier to find (or maybe even produce)?

I use cashews instead of pinenuts and it has been a winner so far : )

We make most of our food, as american/mexican style food is both expensive and Not Good in Sydney- salsa, ribs, barbacoa, cold-brew coffee, cornbread etc. The Jennifer Reese book is a great read.

soccerluvof4

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #13 on: January 06, 2018, 01:35:44 AM »
I think meals/dishes is where the savings is made. I do all the cooking and I will look like through the deli. We make a lot of pasta salads always one on hand with especially now 4 basically teenagers in the house and I make them for a fraction of the cost. I honestly cant think of one thing that I can make that is cheaper than buying and if you include the time and running the oven etc..Now for quality or taste for sure.

Imma

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #14 on: January 06, 2018, 02:28:00 AM »
Pasta is easy and delicious to make

At $1/box it's so inexpenve to buy, not worth making. IMO. I think you get 16oz in a box.

You shouldn't compare your fresh home-made pasta to the cheapest brand in the grocery store, but to the handmade pasta at the deli.
If you compare DIY anything to the very cheapest alternative, the very cheapest alternative is very likely to be cheaper. If you compare it to something of the same quality, it's often cheaper to DIY.

I make nearly everything myself, except for pasta. I grew up in a family of farmers and this is how I was raised. I wouldn't really know what to do with any kind of boxed mix. I like to make my own spice mixes too these days (we didn't eat that at home). For the price of one small bag of chili con carne seasoning mix you can make ten times as much if you buy the separate ingredients, with a lot less salt too.

BeautifulDay

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #15 on: January 06, 2018, 02:39:37 AM »
We make our own pesto because we grow a ton of basil. Ends up being pretty inexpsive to make yourself.

Do you use pine nuts? Or something cheaper/easier to find (or maybe even produce)?

When I make pesto I mix in almonds with my pine nuts to make them go farther.  I tried just using almonds but the taste wasn't right. But a mixture works for me.

Hula Hoop

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #16 on: January 06, 2018, 03:20:05 AM »
I use just pine nuts in my pesto but a small amount.  IMO using other kinds of nuts makes it taste strange.

Can anyone share their pasta making method?  Do you do it the old fashioned way (ie with rolling pin and a knife) or do you have a pasta machine?  I've been eyeing second hand pasta machines as they are cheap on Italian ebay.  I suspect a lot of the younger generation inherit their grandma's pasta machine and have no idea how to use it so they put it up for sale.

Hirondelle

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #17 on: January 06, 2018, 03:52:19 AM »
Following this thread as I'd like to make more things by myself.

So far it's mainly been baking stuff, like healthy variations of chocolate chip cookies (oatmeal, banana, chocolate, that's all!), kruidnoten and oliebollen. Especially for baking I really don't understand why people use mixes. Those are usually just flour and and sugar pre-mixed with a load of additives.

I also like to 'make' my own ice-cream flavors by just buying a plain one from the supermarket and adding whatever flavors I want to it (fruits, chocolate, cookie dough, name it).

I'm curious in trying out self-made pesto, peanut butter, ice cream and bread.

Fomerly known as something

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #18 on: January 06, 2018, 04:48:36 AM »
This thread is making me hungry.

Sweet Cashew cream (as a sort of substitute for yogurt I need to get some probiotics to experiment making Cashew Yogurt.)

Granola, banana nut muffins.

Imma

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #19 on: January 06, 2018, 07:26:05 AM »
Following this thread as I'd like to make more things by myself.

So far it's mainly been baking stuff, like healthy variations of chocolate chip cookies (oatmeal, banana, chocolate, that's all!), kruidnoten and oliebollen. Especially for baking I really don't understand why people use mixes. Those are usually just flour and and sugar pre-mixed with a load of additives.

I also like to 'make' my own ice-cream flavors by just buying a plain one from the supermarket and adding whatever flavors I want to it (fruits, chocolate, cookie dough, name it).

I'm curious in trying out self-made pesto, peanut butter, ice cream and bread.

I never got pancake mixes. The grocery store has 20 different kinds, but all you need to do is throw milk, flour and eggs in a bowl.

I make breakfast muffins sometimes from oatmeal - banana - peanut butter. They're very easy to make and very convenient to take with you. Home made peanut butter is extremely easy if you have good quality blender. Bread is a bit more complicated if you don't have a machine, you really need to knead it very well. It's really hit or miss for me. Pizza dough is easy though. Once in a while I make pizza and use up all my leftovers. Nearly everything tastes good on pizza. For some reason, my bf refuses to eat bananas that are brown on the outside, so if we've got a few of them I like to bake banana bread. I freeze half of it straight away so we have something nice for unexpected visitors.

BookLoverL

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #20 on: January 06, 2018, 07:55:49 AM »
I decided that I'm going to learn to make bread this January. I just need to pick a good day for it, when my mum hasn't already done it with the breadmaker.

Laura33

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #21 on: January 06, 2018, 09:12:28 AM »
I make a lot of stuff, either for quality, cost, or fun.  I have berry vines in my backyard, so I make jam, which is a pain but reminds me of childhood summers with my Granny.  Not sure itís any cheaper, when you count the hardware and cheap jams available, but I do mine with no sugar, which is very hard to find (at least without some version of sugar substitute ó donít want extra sweetness, thanks, just want the fruit!). 

I will also make my own mayo (with olive oil), bread, pasta, etc. when I want quality versions (even though I also buy the cheaper versions for everyday), because they just taste delicious.*  And pizza dough ó make a big batch in the Kitchen-Aid, divide it into individual portion sizes, and freeze.  Oh, and marshmallows.  I gotta say, pizza parties and marshmallow-making are two of the messiest, most fun things you can have in the kitchen with kids.

I donít even count baked goods here ó I canít remember the last time I used a box mix for anything, when itís so easy to throw flour and baking powder and sugar/salt together.

And sometimes I make my own just because the store has pissed me off.  A few weeks ago I needed ground pork for a recipe, and the store was selling it for like $4-5/lb ó right next to a whole pork loin for $1.89/lb.  So I bought the pork loin, used half of it for the recipe, and still have another roast in my freezer, all for the same price I could have paid for just the ground pork.

Right now, it is all pretty much hit-or-miss, depending on my mood and available time.  I suspect when I RE, I will make more on my own as I will have plenty of time to putter in the kitchen.

* Per the question above, I have a whole mess of attachments for my Kitchen-Aid, including the pasta roller/cutters, the grinder, and the shredder.  So I can do pretty much anything I need without having to own multiple different specialty tools.

Carrie

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #22 on: January 06, 2018, 09:26:42 AM »
I make so much of our food from scratch.
Bread/buns
Pastries- pie crusts, puff pastry
Seasoning mixes, rubs
Salad dressings & marinades
Barbecue sauce
Stock, broth
Sauces, marinaras, white sauces
Beans from dried, refried beans
Pico di gallo, guac
Tortillas, naan, pita
Pasta (use the kitchenaide attachment)

Now some things I'll buy from time to time, like pasta for spaghetti @$1 or less per pound, but I always make my lasagna noodles and potstickers dough, and ravioli. I'll buy tortillas too if I'm out of time. But I always,  always make my own naan and pita, french bread, Cuban bread, other specialty breads. I still buy sandwich bread for school lunches for the kids.

I can't even tell you the last time I bought broth or any kind of premixed seasoning packet.

MrDelane

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #23 on: January 06, 2018, 09:32:05 AM »
This might not be the most exciting response, but the best bang for the buck in regards to foods I now make instead of buying is probably tortillas.

The dough is amazingly simple to make and freezes incredibly well.
I usually make a large batch and then split them into individual balls in the freezer.
When we want tortillas we simply thaw out the necessary amount and cook them on the stove in the moment.  And the taste of fresh tortillas is night and day when compared to store bought packages.

Another thing I make instead of buy is chicken stock.  I decided at the start of 2017 to only buy whole chickens instead of parts.  I divide it up myself and then use the remains for stock.  It seemed like a lot of trouble at first but now that I've done it for a while it's absolutely worth it.  Homemade stock simply cannot be compared to store bought stock.

And while this isn't quite what was being asked - another thing we make instead of buy would be frozen foods.  We prepare pizzas and other things that we keep in the freezer for those days when we don't feel like cooking (or don't have the time).  Instead of buying frozen pizza we can simply cook our own (which we made when we did have the time).  It keeps us from spending unnecessary money on bad nutritional choices.


jac941

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #24 on: January 06, 2018, 09:41:04 AM »
Things we make because theyíre easy / cheap: yogurt, pizza dough, corn tortillas, cornbread, muffins, banana and othe quick breads, waffles, pancakes, stocks/broths.

Things we make because theyíre tasty but actually more expensive: lemon curd, jam, canned tomatoes, ice cream, pasta.

Lichen

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #25 on: January 06, 2018, 10:20:15 AM »
We do a lot from scratch, but not everything :)

-Oat milk for the lactose intolerant kid.
-I made paneer this week! It's likely to become a regular occurrence.
-Sometimes we make yogurt in the summer.
-Homemade ice cream.
-Jams and jellies.
-Can our own tomatoes, among other things.
-Rolls and other bread stuffs.
-All baked goods.
-Cocoa mix.
-Any and all sauces & gravies -- never use a mix.

Those are what come to mind right now. We used to make dressings and condiments, but have gotten away from it since I went back to school. Most condiments are inexpensive for comparable flavor, so the time/cost return just wasn't worth it.

Serendip

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #26 on: January 06, 2018, 10:44:42 AM »
We also have recently started making oat milk (and hemp milk but my SO prefers oats)
Easiest/most economical switch-out and super tasty.

Will try making tortillas today!
And will have to try my hand at bread soon.


MrDelane

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #27 on: January 06, 2018, 10:54:33 AM »
We also have recently started making oat milk (and hemp milk but my SO prefers oats)
Easiest/most economical switch-out and super tasty.

Will try making tortillas today!
And will have to try my hand at bread soon.

This is the tortilla recipe we started with:
http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2015/05/soft-chewy-flour-tortillas-recipe.html

We adjusted from there to our taste (mixing corn and flour, tweaking the fat component, etc).

The baking powder isn't 100% necessary, but if you prefer softer and fluffier tortillas it makes a huge difference.

Oh - and keeping tortillas at the ready is a great way to get rid of leftovers.
I can't tell you how many times yesterday's leftover dinner of chicken or fish became tonight's tacos.

jeninco

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #28 on: January 06, 2018, 10:56:16 AM »
Pesto can legit be made with walnuts (as with many things, try a small batch first). My neighbors sometimes use sunflower seeds, which is inauthentic, but not bad.

Horseradish is crazy easy to grow lots of places, but watch out -- it can spread aggressively. Perhaps try in a pot? We dig ours up most fall, and it's like a dandelion -- we've never gotten every single tiny piece of root out, and we always have a new plant in that spot in the spring. Otherwise, scrub and peel the root and grind it in a food processor with a little water OUTSIDE. No, really, do it outside, or you risk driving everyone out of your house. Check a couple of recipes about how to fix the burn level when it's reached the point you like.

We make most things from scratch, including all regular food, granola, yogurt, sauerkraut (and occasionally other pickled things), and special breads. Great idea for a thread!

Agent Rosenflower

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #29 on: January 06, 2018, 10:59:49 AM »
Things we make because theyíre tasty but actually more expensive: lemon curd, jam, canned tomatoes, ice cream, pasta.

I know someone who makes her own soy sauce! The process is fascinating and it probably tastes incredible, but there canít be any cost-benefit win there.

teen persuasion

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #30 on: January 06, 2018, 11:27:13 AM »
With milk so stupid cheap lately (under $2/gal), I make simple cheeses like mozzarella for pizza and ricotta for lasagne.  The leftover whey is great for pancakes and waffles, and used in other baked goods like the pizza dough.

I still buy spaghetti, but will make pasta for lasagne, or as noodles in soup.

FireLane

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #31 on: January 06, 2018, 01:03:55 PM »
I got on a sourdough kick last year. Sourdough starter is easy to get going and super versatile, although you have to use it and replenish it frequently. In my house we make pancakes, pizza dough, or bread with it at least once a week.

I haven't done it lately, but yogurt is simple to make at home, much cheaper and healthier (less sugar) than the store-bought kind. Fresh ricotta is another winner. I've experimented with making pickles at home, but I haven't nailed that recipe yet.

Pesto is a good one to make and save. I use walnuts instead of pine nuts, it's just as good. I found out you can substitute other greens for basil. I have a few containers of summer pesto made with carrot-top greens in my freezer right now.

mm1970

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #32 on: January 06, 2018, 03:15:11 PM »
I make a bunch of stuff from scratch.

- bread
- muffins
- pesto (I don't put any kind of nuts in mine)
- salad dressing
- salsa

It's been awhile since I've made yogurt.  Probably start making meatballs again. 

Juslookin

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #33 on: January 06, 2018, 05:06:58 PM »
We make our own pesto because we grow a ton of basil. Ends up being pretty inexpsive to make yourself.

Do you use pine nuts? Or something cheaper/easier to find (or maybe even produce)?

Yes pine nuts from a place that sells them by the pound. We were going to try a different nut to save money but never got around to it.

I use walnuts all the time.....way cheaper and I can't taste any difference.

BrandonP

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #34 on: January 06, 2018, 10:37:52 PM »
Thinking of doing Hummus. It is quite pricey to buy outright. But making it should be a lot cheaper.

inline five

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #35 on: January 06, 2018, 10:42:32 PM »
We make our own pesto because we grow a ton of basil. Ends up being pretty inexpsive to make yourself.

Do you use pine nuts? Or something cheaper/easier to find (or maybe even produce)?

Yes pine nuts from a place that sells them by the pound. We were going to try a different nut to save money but never got around to it.

I use walnuts all the time.....way cheaper and I can't taste any difference.

Good to know, thanks!

Imma

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #36 on: January 07, 2018, 05:13:28 AM »
Thinking of doing Hummus. It is quite pricey to buy outright. But making it should be a lot cheaper.

Hummus is very easy to make and it tastes much better fresh! I make falafel at home too.

Another one, super obvious of course, but I make my own soup! Our grocery store has a BOGO deal now on a popular brand of canned soup. You won't believe how much canned soup everyone was buying.

I keep a few cans of soup in the pantry to avoid takeout on a very busy day, but it's just too expensive and unhealthy to eat every day, as well as by far not as tasty as fresh soup. Soup is so easy to make and you can use up all the vegetable leftovers in the fridge + half packets of cream.

HipGnosis

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #37 on: January 07, 2018, 07:04:32 AM »
I think I bought one jar of spaghetti sauce in the last 10 yrs - I was in a time crunch to make lasagna for guests.  I've been making my own for years.  I never make it ahead as I like changing the seasoning and sweetness to suit my dish or mood.  I do 'cheat' by using minced, jarred garlic (from Aldi's).

I just started making my own salsa.  I'm currently using canned chipotle peppers instead of jalapenos, but I'm going to try a combination next.  Being able to make it to my taste and the price savings has me regretting not doing this sooner.
 

EmFrugal

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #38 on: January 07, 2018, 11:06:27 AM »
Do you guys have a recipe you would recommend for homemade yogurt? My family of 5 goes through so much plain, whole milk yogurt a week and I'm wondering if I could save by making it myself. Right now I buy about 5 big containers a week. Each container is about $3-$3.30 depending on the store. Unfortunately our warehouse store (BJs) doesn't sell plain, whole milk yogurt. Only non fat. It always feels crazy to put that much yogurt in my cart but everyone eats it for breakfast and snacks with fresh fruit and granola.

macoconut

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #39 on: January 07, 2018, 01:01:36 PM »
Do you guys have a recipe you would recommend for homemade yogurt? My family of 5 goes through so much plain, whole milk yogurt a week and I'm wondering if I could save by making it myself. Right now I buy about 5 big containers a week. Each container is about $3-$3.30 depending on the store. Unfortunately our warehouse store (BJs) doesn't sell plain, whole milk yogurt. Only non fat. It always feels crazy to put that much yogurt in my cart but everyone eats it for breakfast and snacks with fresh fruit and granola.
We use a gallon of whole milk every 1-2 weeks to make a huge container of yogurt. I follow these instructions for making yogurt in an Instant Pot. (I've never made yogurt without an Instant Pot.) http://thisoldgal.com/instant-pot-greek-yogurt/2/

Then I use two of these to strain the yogurt to make greek yogurt: https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B0091XNL0I (NOTE: Chill the yogurt for 10-12 hours first, then put into these strainers for about 5 hours.)

FireLane

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #40 on: January 07, 2018, 04:19:00 PM »

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #41 on: January 07, 2018, 05:34:35 PM »
We make sun-dried tomatoes when we have an excess.  They keep great under oil, and can be used in salads, or my favourite, on fresh pasta with bacon and pine nuts.

kimmarg

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #42 on: January 07, 2018, 05:50:32 PM »
It's all about effort to results ratio. I make bread all the time, mainly the no knead kind. On the other hand I always buy tortillas because while I know how to make them with the rolling and individual cooking it takes a while and my family eats a ton of them.

SimpleCycle

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #43 on: January 07, 2018, 07:25:21 PM »
I make a metric ton of hummus and similar bean dips.  I love playing around with different flavors.

I always make pasta sauce from scratch.

We make a lot of salsa, mostly to eat fresh, some to can.

I cook beans from scratch about half the time and used canned the other half.

I make my own salad dressings.

I make tortillas a lot, but we live in the land of cheap corn tortillas, so this is mainly for quality.

I guess I forgot that pancake mixes are a thing, I’ve never used one.

I make baby food, but daycare only accepts sealed packages of baby food so it’s only for home.  I can’t wait until the baby is on table food.

I haven’t had a lot of luck with sourdough, but I might try again.

We used to make our own ginger beer, we should do that again.

I make limoncello, which is nice to have around for gifts.

I make infused syrups, mostly for my non-Mustachian cocktail habit.

FiftyIsTheNewTwenty

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #44 on: January 07, 2018, 11:04:18 PM »
We make our own pesto because we grow a ton of basil. Ends up being pretty inexpsive to make yourself.

Do you use pine nuts? Or something cheaper/easier to find (or maybe even produce)?

Walnuts make great pesto.  $12 for 3 LB at Costco.

FiftyIsTheNewTwenty

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #45 on: January 07, 2018, 11:10:30 PM »
Thinking of doing Hummus. It is quite pricey to buy outright. But making it should be a lot cheaper.

I live on homemade hummus.  I get tahini for about $5/lb from Amazon, bought 2-4 lb. at a time.

Cooking dried beans vs. canned has been worth it too, not just cheaper but much better.

diapasoun

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #46 on: January 08, 2018, 10:06:24 AM »
Ooooo this is the best!

Seasoning mixes and salad dressings -- basically anything that's just mixing super simple components you already have together -- are some of my fave guaranteed money savers. A lot of pancake and baking mixes fall into this category, too. (These mixes are actually some of my go-tos for holiday gifts -- I make spice mixes, hot cocoa mixes, pancake mixes, etc because they're easy and cheap to make and pretty much everyone loves them.)

Bread (especially when I want a nice crunchy artisan sourdough, or god forbid a rye loaf in California) and granola. The main ingredients are super cheap (flour, yeast, oats), so you really end up paying for labor with these. And the labor isn't even that hard, especially for granola. If you eat both bread and granola and are worried about screwing up bread, I'd try granola first.

Jam is cost effective for me, but not so much for big canning batches. Big batches of jam require a lot of fruit and that's usually expensive for me (I don't have a ton of fruit bushes at my house, just a few blackberry canes that pedestrians pick over pretty hard). But making a little batch -- maybe a jar's worth -- and keeping it in the fridge is a great way to use up some fruit that would go bad otherwise, or to use up the last of a big bag of Costco frozen fruit. It also means I don't have to break out the big canning equipment....

I make paneer at home and that's waaay cheaper in my area. You can get a gallon of whole milk for under four bucks, whereas the equivalent amount of paneer is well over four bucks. Since all you have to add is a glug of something acidic, like lemon juice or vinegar, and then you strain with a reusable cheesecloth... super worth it.

I also make my own stock whenever I cook a bird, or once I gather up enough leftover veggie scraps from cooking (I save veggie scraps in a bag in the freezer to make veggie stock). It's the most delicious stuff -- my boyfriend gets really excited whenever I cook a chicken because there's going to be stock afterwards. ;)

My next goals are yogurt and tortillas, so I'm chuffed to see all the yogurt + tortilla recipes ahead!
« Last Edit: January 08, 2018, 11:38:41 AM by diapasoun »

Spiffy

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #47 on: January 08, 2018, 10:13:53 AM »
We make our own pesto because we grow a ton of basil. Ends up being pretty inexpsive to make yourself.

Do you use pine nuts? Or something cheaper/easier to find (or maybe even produce)?

When I make pesto I mix in almonds with my pine nuts to make them go farther.  I tried just using almonds but the taste wasn't right. But a mixture works for me.
I use walnuts more often than pine nuts because I always have them on hand.

netskyblue

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #48 on: January 08, 2018, 11:58:56 AM »
I make chicken and beef stock from the leftover bones that would otherwise be thrown away.  The "good" stock at the store is like $3/quart, and I usually can around 3 gallons at a time.  I use it SO often, and I never cook rice in water, always stock.

Unfortunately, we don't eat much that's on this list, or not often enough to make it worthwhile to make from scratch.  Like salsa, we buy maybe 1-2 jars a year.  It's just not worth the effort if we're spending $5 a year on it.  Whereas stock, I'd estimate we use a good 9 gallons a year, and that's over $100 if store bought. 

SimpleCycle

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Re: Making foods you would normally buy
« Reply #49 on: January 08, 2018, 01:23:50 PM »
My next goals are yogurt and tortillas, so I'm chuffed to see all the yogurt + tortilla recipes ahead!

I only use one tortilla recipe, and it's on the back of Maseca corn masa mix.  I have a tortilla press and that makes quick work of the whole thing.