March 3, 2014

Homemade Convenience Food Series

Over the past couple of years I've written a series of posts about making convenience foods at home.

It has spanned three years and I still add a post occasionally. It includes a wide variety of make-ahead convenience foods, from taco seasoning to cookie mixes and main dishes.

When I began this series, I focused on saving time and money. Now I also want to eat a healthy diet and avoid processed foods, preservatives, and chemical additives. Fortunately, both approaches are pretty similar. By cooking from scratch to save money, I was already preparing healthier food for my family.

The best advice I ever read ago was to "shop for ingredients, not for dinner". Your dollars will go much further if you buy basic ingredients, the makings of dinner, instead of buying food that has been made for you. The more work that has been done for you, the more expensive (and less healthy) that food will be at the register.

Instead, buy flour, spices, honey, cheese, meats, vegetables, and so on. You'll have the ingredients for many meals instead of a box that will make dinner for tonight. Your trip to the grocery store will also be much faster as you cruise around the perimeter of the store, buying produce, meat and dairy, with a quick zip down the aisle of baking supplies.

Plant a garden if you can, and grow your own produce.

It's a wonderful feeling to come across a delicious-sounding recipe and know that you already have all the necessary ingredients on hand.

Just by changing the way you think about food, you can have a well-stocked pantry to sustain your family. By changing your methods slightly, you can save time and work in the kitchen. I'll tell you how in the following posts.


Part One - Spice Mixes (chili seasoning recipe)
Part Two - Chili Mac
Part Three - Ground Beef (taco seasoning recipe)
Part Four - Dump Chicken
Part Five - Make Ahead
Part Six - Pizza Crust
Part Seven - Pies
Part Eight - Chicken Stock
Part Nine - Veggies and Herbs
Part Ten - More Make-Ahead Ideas
Part Eleven - More on Ground Beef
Part Twelve - More Pizza Crust
Part Thirteen - Make a Mix
Part Fourteen - Cookies
Part Fifteen - Brownies
Part Sixteen - Corn Muffin Mix
Part Seventeen - Honey Oat Bread bread machine mix
Part Eighteen - Cookie Mixes
Part Nineteen - Make-Your-Own Baking Mix

This post has been shared at some of my favorite blog hops


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  1. This is very valuable information and a great idea, Kathi! Thanks for sharing it with us.


  2. Looking forward to this! I love the advice of shop for ingredients not dinner. So true!!

  3. Staci, I hope you find something that "speaks" to you!

  4. This looks fantastic! I will definitely be poking around!

  5. I hope you'll find a few things that will help you out, Rebekah.

  6. Thanks for the great advice and all the recipes! So helpful.

  7. I'm going to have to check out these recipes!! I've been trying to find new things to fix for hubby & I for dinner lately.

  8. I love homemade convenience foods. Saves money and taste better. Thanks for posting! Will be browsing through your post for ideas :)

  9. I agree - homemade convenience food is the BEST! :-)

  10. What a great list of convenience food swaps. Hello from the Down Home Blog Hop.

  11. Thank you for this! I am looking forward to making some...or all of these!!

    I'm stopping by from the HomeAcre Hop. Have a great week.

  12. Welcome, Jen, thank you for stopping by!

  13. This is a great series. I like to make my own "convenience foods" and can or freeze extras to use later. BTW, I found my way here through the 104 Homestead Blog Hop.

  14. I'm glad you found your way here; thank you for stopping by. Homemade convenience food is the best, isn't it? By making it ourselves, we know it's healthy, frugal, and that we'll love it!

  15. I love making my own homemade convenience foods too! I can't remember the last time I bought a "box" of anything! LOL!! I'm looking forward to checking out some of your posts. :)

  16. Thank you, Candy. I think it's fun to spend an afternoon refilling all my mix jars, how about you?

  17. Like you, I strive to shop for ingredients, not supper. And growing the garden makes a tremendous impact on our budget, as does the dehydrating produce kick I've been on lately. It's easy if you start small and build on it, first mix your own spice mixes, then try your hand at cooking from scratch, then gardening, etc. Thanks for sharing! (Visiting from Simple Life Sunday Hop)

    ~Taylor-Made Ranch~
    Wolfe City, Texas

  18. That's a great timeline, Tammy. I hope others will begin to save money and provide healthier food for their families.

  19. Anonymous1:07 PM

    I just love your Homemade Convenience Food Series. So much money will be saved. Thank you for sharing with the Clever Chicks Blog Hop! I hope you’ll join us again next week!

    Kathy Shea Mormino
    The Chicken Chick

  20. Thank you for sharing your post at Meal Planning Monday Recipe Link-Up last week. I hope you join us again this week. :)

  21. I chose to peak at this one from your tops posts. Have pinned for future meal making, thank you!

  22. Kathi at Oak Hill Homestead7:11 AM

    Thank you for the pin, Jes. I hope you found something inspiring here.


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