Isn’t it interesting that our parents and grandparents always had food on the table no matter how hard the times were while we keep running thegrocery store every few days and end up spending tons of money? Do you think there is a secret for their success in putting food on the table day after day? There really is no secret. The reason they were successful is because they  planned and prepared. Planning and preparation is the key to getting good meals on the table in good times and in bad times. Once we start to plan and prepare for our meals, we will learn how to stretch our budget and learn how to live on less money.

This means that we need to decide which grocery items we need to have in our pantry at all times. Once we have our pantry stocked with staples we will be able to prepare good meals without running to the grocery store so often. All it really takes is stocking your pantry with a few items that you can create healthy meals with. Here are five staples that you need to have in
your pantry.

1. Flour

Flour is the most important item to have in your pantry because most recipes require flour. For example, you can add it to a saucepan of stew to thicken it or if you are frying chicken you will need to coat it in flour, among other things. Flour can be added to water and added to your stews to thicken them or you can use flour to coat meat. Flour is also need for baking. If you are making breads, biscuits or cakes, you need flour. You also need flour to coat the baking pans with if you are baking. There are many uses for flour and that includes making desserts.

2. Rice

Rice is the number two staple because most people around the world eat rice. Some people eat rice every day and some eat rice a few times a week. Rice is a staple because you can make many things with it. You can add other flavourings to it. Rice can also be used to make dessert such as sweet rice or rice pudding. To make sweet rice, all you have to do is to add evaporated milk  and sugar to the rice and warm it up to make a nice dessert. If you have condensed milk, you can use that instead of the evaporated milk and sugar because it already contains sugar. Sweet rice can be an after dinner treat. Another way to use rice is to cook plenty so you have leftovers that you can make casseroles with. To make a casserole, all you have to do is to add leftover meat and some cream soup. Rice has many uses and you will come up with a few ideas to use leftovers to prepare meals for your family.

3. Pasta

Pasta is another great staple that you should have in your kitchen because of its versatility. An example for using pasta would be to buy Manicotti which can be stuffed with things such as tomato sauce and cheese for a nice dish. Macaroni is another type of pasta that can be used to make salads, or you can add cheese and milk to it if you want to make macaroni and cheese or you can even add sauces to spruce it up. The spiral types of pastas can also be used to make salads. Spaghetti is another type of pasta that you can cook and add a meat sauce or tomato sauces it to serve to your family.

4. Spices

The fourth staple for your pantry is spices. When I say spices, I do not mean salt and pepper. You need salt and pepper in your pantry but in addition, you need spices. Spices in general taste better than salt and pepper when added to your recipes. You can cut back on the salt when you add spices to your food as spices make your dishes more flavourful if you don’t like bland  food. The following spices should be in your pantry: Chilli powder, cayenne pepper, nutmeg, cinnamon, oregano, garlic powder, and onion powder, just to name a few. When you add spices to your food, it gives your food a new taste and flavour.

5. Beans

Beans are another staple that you should have in your pantry. Just think of all the ways you can use beans. You can add them to salads, make dips with them and they also go well with grilled foods. Beans are also very healthy because they are a good source of protein so if you are living on a budget, beans will be a good source of protein for your family. Beans are very filling and you can add them to soup, to stews, to rice or you can even eat them on their own. An example of this would be lentils. You can cook the lentils, add some oregano and a pinch of curry powder and some cooked onions, let it all simmer and serve as a meals. It is very tasty.

If you don’t have these staples in your kitchen, you need to go out an purchase them. You will probably think of many more spices that you can add to your pantry to save time and money. Simply start with the staples mentioned above and then you can add to them as time goes on.

In summary, above are some frugal living tips that you should employ if you want to same time and money.


Filed under: How to Live Frugally

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