Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Re-Cap of the Year's Store-Bought Food Replacements

About a year ago, I made a commitment to slowly replace store-bought items with homemade versions. I've tried quite a few things.  Some have been keepers and I've been able to stick to them, and others faded quickly.

The items I've successfully replaced:

Granola bars
Lattes & coffee syrups
Marshmallows-regular & peppermint
Liquid handsoap
Refried Beans (and BBQ baked beans-make the same way and just mix with BBQ sauce at the end!)
Bagels (from Artisan Bread in 5 minutes a Day)

The items I occasionally replace (as in, maybe half the time I do it myself, the rest I buy):

Yogurt in the Crockpot
Graham crackers
Chai Tea (I prefer this in the winter, but prefer Tazo brand iced in the summer)

The items I tried to replace but weren't worth the effort:

Nutrigrain bars (I thought I blogged this, but I can't find it)
Fresh Bread (I make this for certain meals, but have not really tried to solely make my own)

My newest replacement:

Spaghetti sauce!  It's so super easy and frugal that I know this one will stick.  I hope we aren't the only family who plows through pasta sauce!  Keep your eyes open, I'll be posting this recipe later this week!

What have you replaced in this last year?  Do you prefer the homemade versions?  Do you think it's worth the effort?  Any other replacements you've found particularly helpful?


  1. foods that are worth the effort for me are...
    *granola/granola bars
    *pasta sauce/pizza sauce
    *energy bars
    *coffee syrup
    *crock pot beans (refried and bbq)

    huge savings and not a lot of time. plus it's always better to know what goes in your food ;)

  2. WE have been really loving making homemade pizza, and ever since reading Natalie's homemade iced coffee that has been a for sure easy switch. We have a bread machine that when I use it makes homemade bread so easy. I would love to learn to make homemade pasta, have always used my own sauce but strangely enough haven't since moving here, and um.... well let's see homemade butter too much work, but oh so good! That's all I can think of right now. I will be back for the recipe of your sauce. Oh and I so want to buy the attachment for the Kitchen Aid so I can make homemade ice cream.
    Outside of food, we haven't used paper napkins or paper towels for quite some time. I'm really happy about that switch and it really is the reason why I have so many cloth napkins and hankys in my Etsy shop ;)
    Oh and Mo loves to buy the beans and make them because he has that oober frugal gene that just gets giddy when we can buy a whole bag of beans for under a buck and feed the whole family :)

  3. Jami- I forgot that we've also switched to homemade pizza. LOVE it! So much tastier and cheaper-well worth it.
    Noel-I did NOT know there was an attachment for ice cream! That will be going on my "wants" list promptly. We also do not use paper towels or napkins. We don't even think twice about it anymore. We also cook our own beans. That has been a fun one. We make a big batch, freeze in 2 cup portions (can size), and then just defrost when we want them.



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