Wednesday, January 6, 2010

"Eat from the pantry challenge"

At the end of December, Money Saving Mom issued an "eat from the pantry challenge". I had decided to play along. I was looking at my cupboards and realized that I had already been doing this for the last couple months. I do have some areas that have surplus, but I'm definitely going to have to go to the store for quite a few things. Maybe my goal should be to restock my pantry!

Tuesday night, I started to take inventory of what I have. I sort of finished the inventory yesterday. By the time I got done going through my cabinets, I was tired of taking inventory. I opened the refrigerator door, saw how many little items were in there, and decided not to itemize the items in the fridge. I know what I have in there. There is very little left in our freezer. Following is a breakdown of what we have in our cabinets and on our counter top.

Baking Supplies

11 lbs. all purpose flour
5 lbs. whole wheat flour
~1 c. corn meal
4 lbs. granulated sugar
~1 c. powdered sugar
2 lbs. brown sugar
canola oil
flax seeds
1/3 lb. cinnamon


hot chocolate mix
tea bags (various)
instant decaf. tea
drink-ade pouches
bottled water
various soft drinks

Cereals and Grains

partial box of Rice Krispies
~2 lbs. oats
3 lbs. white rice
1 lb. pearled barley
1 1/2 lbs. saltine crackers


8 bottles BBQ sauce
3 bottles ketchup
64 oz. apple cider vinegar
1 gal. + white vinegar (I use this mostly for cleaning)
2+ bottles of syrup (regular and boysenberry)
4 small jars jelly
5 envelopes ranch dressing mix
2 boxes of Sure Jell
1 envelope onion soup mix
Worcestershire sauce


1 lb. lentils
1 lb. green split peas
2 lbs. navy beans
6 1/2 lbs. peanut butter
2 cans tuna
2 lbs. ground beef (fridge, still frozen)
3 + dozen eggs

Fruits and Veggies

~5 lbs. russet potatoes
10 bananas
4 clementine oranges
1 can Rotel
2 cans mandarin oranges
1 can tropical mixed fruit
2 cans pineapple tidbits
2 cans pineapple chunks
1 can pineapple slices
1 can mushroom pieces and stems
1 can French style green beans
1 1/2 lbs. raisins

Jon's lunches

gelatin and fruit cups
pudding cups
(2) 1.5 oz. boxes of raisins

Snacks and Desserts

1 lb. graham crackers
~4 c. popcorn kernels
5+ lbs. star bright mints
1 bag spiced jelly beans
1 jar hot fudge
1 bag peanut M&Ms
2 1/2 bags mini marshmallows
1 bag regular marshmallows
1 bag fruit flavored mini marshmallows (These are actually for school projects not consumption.)
12.4 oz rainbow twist Twizzlers
3 Hershey's bars
1 bag candy corn
1 bag Autumn mix candy corn
Tootsie Roll Pops
Blow Pops
2 cake mixes
5 tubs frosting
2 brownie mixes (boxed)
1 brownie mix in a jar
sugar cookie mix
1 can apple pie filling
2 pound cake mixes
1 can evaporated milk

1 lb. block white chocolate
1 lb. block milk chocolate

1/2 c. blanched and slivered almonds
Baker's chocolate
14 oz. sweetened flaked coconut
8 oz. chopped dates
homemade oatmeal raisin cookie mix
1 lb. walnuts
1+ bags milk chocolate chips
1 bag white chocolate chips
1 part bag Hershey's Kisses
1 box graham cracker crumbs
1 chocolate chip cookie mix

12 boxes of gelatin
1 box of pudding mix


Oops! I didn't inventory the spice cabinet. I'm getting low or am out of a lot of spices.

Can you tell that we don't eat much candy or desserts? Some of that candy is from Valentine's Day and Easter from last year. Some may be older than that. We also bought a lot of treat type items for holiday baking and then didn't have time to make everything we were going to. January the month of desserts?


Mrs. Darling said...

Yep I dont advise you to use from the pantry! LOL I would be in panic city if I has so little in the house! Get thee to the store!

Brandi said...

We got a few more meals in before I went to the store. Actually, I was able to stretch the 2 lbs. of ground beef into three meals -- creamed ground beef and rice, BBQ ground beef sandwiches on homemade rolls, and vegetable beef soup.

I only had $50.00 to spend on groceries, so I hope we make it until the next payday.

Damama T said...

If I had to inventory my pantry I'm afraid I'd have to throw out 1/3 of it cuz it's so old... I'm still impressed that you manage to feed your family so frugally.

Tam said...

lol man no wonder your kids go so crazy for sweets away from home if you keep all that in the house and don't let them have any of it :P

you're crazy low on the veggies... out of all the home-canned beans already?

Brandi said...

Thanks, Damama!


Tammy, the kids get candy more than you may realize. We keep a candy jar in our living room and they get some of that. They also get candy at church, often more than once a week. The kids are amazed when they don't get candy at church. All the candies and much of the dessert ingredients in our house are kept in a corner cabinet. Most of those items are behind my cookbooks, our corn meal, the brown sugar, and sometimes pastas. It is the cabinet that we toss stuff in and forget.

I was crazy low on veggies and meats. That is why I had to go to the store. I did have some veggies in the fridge and freezer though (remember, I didn't inventory those).

If I ever had any of the home canned green beans they were not sealed and would have been eaten that same week. I don't think I brought any home. We had a surplus of frozen green beans at the time.