I need to stretch $184.00 6 weeks... - Mothering Forums

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Old 12-29-2009, 08:07 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thankfully I have a hugely (I think so anyway, small compared to some I am sure, ) stocked pantry and would love ideas for meals or links to recipes to stretch it, without depleting it, if possible. We are feeding a family of 6 (2 adults, 4 kids that all eat a good amount for their ages) breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks 7 days a week.

I am going to do an inventory and will update this post with that in a little bit.

Okay ETA my inventory. I am not so worried now seeing everything we have put up listed in one spot.
I started in the freezer and worked my way to the pantry but will try and put all the items in some semblance of an order.

3 cans OJ
3 gallon bags of frozen blueberries
1 gallon bag of frozen plums
1 lb raisins

8lbs onions
6 lbs red potatoes (guessing here)
10 lbs white potatoes (guessing here)
31 cans diced tomatoes
15 cans of tomato paste
2 lbs frozen corn
1 lb frosen green beans
2 cups shredded zucchini
Dinner's worth of frozen lentil/turkey soup
1 gallon bag of vegi's for vegi broth
2 pints frozen tomato/basil sauce

5 cans chickpeas
2 cans black beans
1 can olives
5 lbs dry black beans (guessing on amount)
3/4 Qt jar of risotto
1 cup cous cous
1 lb dry lima beans
1 cup dry kidney beans
2 cups dry red beans
3 gallon size bags dry pinto beans
2 cups lentils
10 lbs brown rice


4 lbs of oats
3 Qt jars of oats
1/2 Qt jar of steel cut oats
2 pts whole groats
1 Qt jar of cream of wheat cereal

3- 1 lb packs of penne pasta
Quart jar of popcorn
80 ounce jar of peanut butter
2 Qt jars of honey
2-1/2 lbs pecans
1 lb cheddar cheese

Package of 5 drumsticks
About 20 meatballs
11 small meal size portions of ground beef
5 beef roasts
3 half packages of bacon
6.5 lb bag of frozen chicken breasts
5 salmon fillets
5 beef ribs
8 sausages
2 half hams (about 9lbs each) will be using bones for soups and think these are many many meals!!
2 meals worth (maybe) of stew meat

4 Qt jars of fish stock
3 gallon size bags of chicken bones for stock
3 gallon size bags of turkey bones for stock
3 boxes pudding mix

I have everything I need for baking most anything. All kinds of flours, sugars, spices, etc. The only 2 ingredients I know I am out of are garlic salt and I will use up the last of the chili powder tonight. I can buy these in bulk locally for pretty cheap so will be getting some of those as we use a ton of them. I will make our own bread so will need to replenish my supply of whole wheat flour but I can get that for less than $1 a pound in the bulk section here. I also have what we canned this year which consists of lots of jams, jellies, pear sauce, apple sauce, canned pears, fruit butters, some homamade tomato sauce is left but not a lot.

I know for sure we will need milk, butter, carrots, yogurt, and apples or bananas. DD2 can't eat most fruits but these two are the ones that do not give her a rash so I try to at least have one of them here for her.

Allison wife and mom to four. 

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Old 12-29-2009, 08:15 PM
 
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I do lots of random quiches/stratas/egg casseroles with leftover or frozen/canned veggies when I'm trying to stretch the pantry. But, I can get eggs quite cheaply ($2 for 3 dozen).

Do you have dried beans in the pantry? I'd be soaking up huge batches and doing burritos, chili, bean burgers, etc.
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Old 12-29-2009, 08:16 PM
 
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2 cups yellow rice, mix in vegis of your choice, we use peas and carrots, and dice up chicken. That is enough for the entire family for dinner, and lunch the next day.

2 boxes of cooked stovetop, and mix in cooked meat.. we use chicken. After you mix it, make "cookies" out of it, cookie sheet on 350 for 10 minutes. It's yummy, and will feed all of you, plus some leftovers.

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Old 12-29-2009, 08:21 PM
 
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the cheapest thing for me to make is soup (usually based around dried beans, split peas, or lentils). it depends on your inventory, though.

considering the length of time and the possibility for emergencies to pop up during those six weeks (like needing a medication or something), i think it would be wise to look into local food banks or other one-time help. i'm guessing you are probably also thinking about ways to bring in any extra cash - even with food in the pantry, it's hard to imagine feeding a family for that long, for less than $1/day/person.
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Old 12-29-2009, 08:35 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I don't think that I even needed to post this after doing an inventory. I think the thought of doing it was freaking me out and now that I know what we have in the house feel much better. We normally spend around $400 a month to feed all of us and this includes a bit of stocking up. We also can/preserve in the summer and I own a pressure canner so have stocks and beans canned from earlier buys.

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Old 12-29-2009, 08:38 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by doubledutch View Post
the cheapest thing for me to make is soup (usually based around dried beans, split peas, or lentils). it depends on your inventory, though.

considering the length of time and the possibility for emergencies to pop up during those six weeks (like needing a medication or something), i think it would be wise to look into local food banks or other one-time help. i'm guessing you are probably also thinking about ways to bring in any extra cash - even with food in the pantry, it's hard to imagine feeding a family for that long, for less than $1/day/person.
I guess I should clarify this. The 184 is what we available for food from our food stamps. We are putting the entire food budget to something else that month only and all other bills are paid and items are budgeted for.

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Old 12-29-2009, 09:40 PM
 
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My DH's mom had 7 kids, there were many times of feast or famine in their household. One of her secret ways to stretch milk was to do half powdered milk/half milk in the jug for drinking. They also used powdered milk for any cooking or cereal, we've done the same thing a couple years ago-it worked well.

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Old 12-30-2009, 04:09 AM
 
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Do you get WIC? if you get FS... I'd assume you get WIC which should get you lots more dairy etc...

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Old 12-30-2009, 04:58 AM
 
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Funny enough, I'm going through a very similar situation. I was honest about dh landing a job that starts in February and was told I was immediately cut off from our food stamps. So I have about $200 to last us until our first paycheck about 6 weeks from now

What I did was made a menu plan, like I usually do, trying to use as little ingredients as possible that I would need to purchase. I am trying to save whatever FS I have left for milk and fresh produce. It seems overwhelming, but I did it for the entire 6 weeks!

With what you posted that you have in your home...I would chop and freeze most of your potatoes and onions to make sure they stay fresh.

Also, Angel food ministries takes food stamps and can really make a difference so I'd check it out if it's a possibility for you.
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Old 12-30-2009, 01:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Do you get WIC? if you get FS... I'd assume you get WIC which should get you lots more dairy etc...
We qualify but I don't want WIC. Our local wic office is nasty and last time I was there (when we had wic) the lady yelled at me for refusing something and threatened to cancel us if we didn't. So I told her that I am cancelling our WIC cause we really don't need it that bad, its just a bonus.

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Old 12-30-2009, 01:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by Smocked View Post
Funny enough, I'm going through a very similar situation. I was honest about dh landing a job that starts in February and was told I was immediately cut off from our food stamps. So I have about $200 to last us until our first paycheck about 6 weeks from now

What I did was made a menu plan, like I usually do, trying to use as little ingredients as possible that I would need to purchase. I am trying to save whatever FS I have left for milk and fresh produce. It seems overwhelming, but I did it for the entire 6 weeks!

With what you posted that you have in your home...I would chop and freeze most of your potatoes and onions to make sure they stay fresh.

Also, Angel food ministries takes food stamps and can really make a difference so I'd check it out if it's a possibility for you.
That is my plan too. Use the money for produce and dairy. I am not worried about the onions or potatoes going bad. We have stored them for much longer before. Menu plan is next on my list. We usually do a month menu plan but this time I will try a 6 week one just to see where it all fits in. I think we are going to be fine as I didn't realize quite how much I had stocked up in some areas. I think the pantry will be pretty depleted after this though.

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