Saturday, January 16, 2010

Eat from the Pantry Challenge: The Juice Dilemma

The pantry shelves aren't stuffed to the gills anymore! The Eat from the Pantry Challenge is going very well so far. I've used up some cuts of meat that had been sitting in the freezer for some time, as well as foods sitting in the fridge.

I was able to use up a lot of things because I made a menu plan last week - the first time I had done a formal one, really! I used up lots of veggies and pasta in my Clean out the Crisper Pasta and Vegetables. I combined some frozen shredded chicken and cans of black beans and tomatoes to make a yummy stew. Refried beans and salsa were featured in my Mexican pizza on a whole wheat crust. Last night I roasted a whole chicken; its meat will be showing up in next week's dishes. And tonight we had a leftover extravaganza, with leftovers from those meals and others, as well as my ratatouille and raspberry applesauce, where everyone could choose what they wanted. So we ate great!

I spent about $67, $7 over budget, but the only foods I bought were milk, cheese, bread, fruits and vegetables. The rest of the money was spent on personal care items, cleaning supplies, and paper items.

We have run out of one key item, though: juice. I thought I was well-stocked at the beginning of the month, with several containers of orange and apple juice concentrate, lemon juice for making lemonade, and a pitcher of grape juice. All are gone now. So do I make do with just milk and water for the kids (ages 12, 9, and 4) for two more weeks, or do I decide that juice is made from fruit and therefore it's okay to buy it? I'll let you know after I do my weekly shopping what I've decided. If you want to help me decide, please leave a comment!

This week, I'm focusing on using up condiments and sauces in the fridge in my menu plan. I hope it's another delicious week!

Thanks to Life as MOM and Money Saving Mom for this great challenge!

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The Prudent Homemaker January 19, 2010 at 6:43 PM  

Just remember, juice is NOT a need. Water is a need. Juice is a luxury.

Fruits and vegetables are important, and give fiber (which juice does not).

Juice is only a treat at my house. Once or twice a month we'll have it. The rest of thetime, we have water. If I have money to buy mik, we buy milk as well, but if not, w get our calcium through powdered milk (added in baking, though the children will also drink i) and from greens in our garden.

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