Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Tonight we ate for $2.66 (only 67 cents per person!)

It's 5:30pm.  I'm goofing off on the computer doing nothing of any importance, and my hubby asks, "What's for dinner?"  Dangit!  I realize that I forgot to put the chicken in the crock pot this morning, and it's still in the freezer, solid as a rock.  I know what's NOT for dinner!  Once upon a time this would have resulted in loading the family in the van and heading out to spend too much money on eating out or in ordering a pizza from the cheapest place in town.

Tonight, though, thanks to my nearly 1-year of stockpile shopping, that was not the case!  I simply threw some things together that I had on hand and that I had paid mere pennies for.  Instead of shredded chicken enchiladas, tonight we had Chicken Noodle soup, and it cost only $2.66...that's 67 cents per person for my family of four...and it was G-O-O-D!

 Below is a list of what I used and how much I paid for it.  One perk of stockpile shopping:  There's ALWAYS something to eat!

Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup for $2.66
2 large chicken breasts; frozen  ($1.49)
2 cans chicken broth  (67 cents each)
1 bag frozen veggies  (50 cents)
1/2 box of spaghetti (free...there was an overage of 7 cents for every 2 boxes I bought)
$2.66 total
Plus I added about 3 cups of water, 1 chicken bouillon, 1 bay leaf, some sage, and salt/pepper to taste.

I put the 2 frozen chicken breasts, broth, water, bouillon, bay leaf, sage, salt and pepper in a large pot to boil.  When chicken was no longer frozen and I could stick a fork all the way through it, I removed it from the pot onto a cutting board.  I broke the spaghetti into thirds to make smaller pieces for the soup, and added it to the broth with the frozen veggies.  I cut the almost-done chicken into little pieces and added it back to the pot.  I cooked it until the chicken was done and the noodles were tender.  I removed the bay leaves before serving.......VOILA!
I could have added a salad and some bread to make a more complete meal, but since this wasn't the meal I had planned on and since it was a little late to be coming up with dinner, I thought that having a grain, a veggie, and a meat was a square enough meal.

The results?  I personally thought it was super yummy...hubby was happy and said he'd like to have it again, and my 4-yr-old-picky-eater-boy said:  "I want you to make these (noodles) every day because they are delicious!"

???????? HOW ???????

Coupon matching and stockpile shopping.  I am not wealthy by any stretch of the imagination, but I can afford to pay full-price for our groceries.  Most of my hobbies COST me money.  You should see the piles of fabric and drawers upon drawers of scrapbooking, bath tea concocting, hair bow making paraphernalia that litter our spare room.  My husband is the golf coach at the high school, and he gets to golf for free, so his favorite hobby doesn't cost him a thing while my need to create crafty little projects costs us a $$ small fortune $$!  So I was super excited when a friend turned me on to this couponing thing.  I'm not one of those "extremers" as seen recently on TLC, but I would proudly say that I am a crazy coupon lady!  This is not a poverty-driven penny-pinching necessity but a fun...sometimes even competitive...hobby that has many perks one of which is that it doesn't cost me a thing...and actually saves us a ton!

There is no way that I can do this every night, but when time permits and I choose to use that time to do so, I think it would be fun to show you just how little you can spend on your meals when you use the stockpile shopping method.

Studies show that food prices are at an all time high and prices are projected to get even higher in the months ahead!  Check out this article:  Whether you're fighting to save your lifestyle by pinching every penny or if you're just bored and in need of a profitable new hobby, check out to get started on your new coupon adventure for the new year!

I'd love to hear how your hobbies have evolved over the years and especially how you've turned them into money makers!  Happy 2011 all!  God bless!