Budget Friendly Foods You Should Keep Stocked.
Having a pantry stocked with frugal foods will help you save money on groceries and curb the temptation to buy take out. Today I get to share with you a few of the best cheap foods to buy for your pantry.
Cheap Foods To Buy for Baking
Watch the grocery stores for sales on baking items. These sales usually come in October/November. This is a great time to stock up on baking supplies so they will last you until the next sale.
Flour is essential for most baking. It is used to make breads, muffins, pancakes, and even in soups and stews. Fortunately, flour is also very cheap! It will stay fresh in the pantry for a year. You can extend the storage time by keeping it in the fridge or freezer.
Sugar is another must have for baking! It enhances flavor and is common in most recipes. Sugar will stay fresh in the pantry for two years.
3. Baking Soda and Baking Powder
When baking from scratch you will also want both baking soda and baking powder. You can store baking soda in the pantry for up to two years. Baking powder doesn’t last as long and should be used within a years time.
5. Vegetable Oil
Oil is another important and cheap staple to keep in your pantry. When you see a good sale, stock up. It will stay fresh on your shelf (unopened) for two years.
Cocoa will give you a chocolate fix, without having to spend a lot of money (just the way we like it!). I like to use cocoa to make brownies, cakes, cookies, and hot chocolate.
Cheap Foods to Buy For The Pantry
Pasta is a great item to keep stocked at home. It’s cheap, plus it can be cooked many different ways. You know you are getting a good deal on pasta when it’s under $1/box.
It doesn’t get much cheaper than rice! You can use it as a side dish with fish, chicken, etc. Or stir it into casseroles to make them a little more filling.
9. Dried Herbs/Spices
What pantry is complete without some spices? These give your meals that flavor we all want. Dried herbs are a lot cheaper than buying fresh.
A few good pantry staples are:
- Salt & Pepper
- Chili Powder
- Garlic Powder
Condiments are great to have stocked! They just make everything better! We personally use ketchup, mayo and mustard the most. Oh, and hot sauce for my husband…I don’t think he could go without it!
May is a good time to buy condiments, as this is when they will usually go on sale.
Vinegar is so useful in recipes and a great cleaning agent. Plus, it’s super cheap! Keep some stocked at all times for making marinades, salad dressings, or homemade cleaners.
One of our favorite breakfasts are these overnight oats. They are quick, easy, and delicious!
Oatmeal is also great to have stocked for making cookies, granola, in smoothies and of course for breakfast.
Cheap Protein Foods to Buy
13. Canned Beans
Canned beans are an excellent source of protein. They are also very affordable (that’s what we like to hear!). To save even more money buy dried beans and can them yourself!
I like to use beans in burritos, soups, and stews. They are also a great BBQ side or pot luck food.
14. Peanut Butter
If you’re looking for a kid friendly, mom approved protein, peanut butter is a wonderful option. We use peanut butter in our oatmeal, sandwiches, on toast, and on apples.
15. Ground Beef
Ground beef is something I always have in my freezer. It’s easy to pull out for quick meals.
The cheapest way to stock up on ground beef is to buy it in bulk. Buy a large 5 lb, or 10 lb loaf. Separate it into 1 lb sections. Freeze these sections in separate freezer bags. Sometimes I’ll cook it all up to make meal prep even quicker.
Chicken is one of the most frugal meats and great for buying in bulk! And there really isn’t anything better than a freezer full of chicken!
Learn more how to prep bulk chicken in my article, What to do with your bulk chicken; including 6 Freezer Chicken Recipes.
Eggs are a great source of protein and are fairly cheap. They will stay fresh in your fridge for a month. Keep eggs stocked in your fridge to use for breakfast, lunch and in baking.
Cheap Produce To Buy
18. Frozen Vegetables
A great staple to keep stocked in your freezer are bags of frozen vegetables. These are much cheaper than fresh vegetables and it’s nice to always have quick access to veggies.
I use our frozen vegetables as side dishes, in stir fry, soups and casseroles.
When we are talking about cheap foods to buy, I have to mention carrots! For a cheap fresh vegetable keep a bag of carrots on hand. I like the petite carrots, but if you buy the large unpeeled carrots they will be even less expensive.
Potatoes are hearty, filling and versatile. They can also be cooked in dozens of different ways. Use them in soups and stews. Shred them into your tacos to make it a little more filling. Mash them, bake them, or fry them! The possibilities are endless!
The most budget friendly way to buy potatoes is to buy a large box when they are in season and keep them in a cool, dark and dry place. They will stay fresh for 6 months if stored correctly.
21. Canned Fruit
Watch grocery stores for case lot sales. This is when you can get a case of canned goods for a big discounted price. I love to stock up during these sales and keep the canned fruit in my pantry until the next sale.
We eat canned fruit as snacks and I put them in my kids school lunchboxes.
22. Canned Tomatoes
Canned Tomatoes are very cheap, especially when you watch for the Case Lot Sales. They are great to have on hand to use in soups, stews, pasta sauce or to make some salsa (my fave!).
Bananas are one of the cheaper fruits available. Put them in smoothies, yogurt, oatmeal and eat them for lunch.
Cheap Foods to Buy For Snacking
I always have a box of raisins in my pantry. They are high in fiber and a great energy boost. Eat raisins as snacks, throw them in a salad or mix them in your oatmeal.
Want to know a secret about me? I am legit addicted to popcorn. I eat it Every.Single.Night. It’s my very favorite food. And fortunately, it doesn’t cost a lot of money to keep it stocked in my pantry. My kids also love popcorn as an after school snack!
There are many cheap foods to buy to keep your pantry well stocked, without breaking the bank. Remember to keep watching for sales and deals. And, ALWAYS use what you buy!
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