August 1, 2010

Two Week Eat from the Pantry Challenge

I’ve decided to give myself a challenge, and if you are game, I’d love for you to join me.  I am going to make every effort possible to eat from the pantry, freezer, refrigerator, and garden for the next two weeks.  I will only go shopping if I can get something free or make money off of it, otherwise, I’m staying out of the stores.  If I really need something, I might barter with friends for it.  I know that I have 1 previously scheduled lunch with a friend, and I have already bought the gift certificate that I plan to use.  Other than that, I will try and avoid restaurants unless I have a coupon for something completely free. 

What prompted this challenge?  The last two months, we increased our food budget to $450.  We did this for two reasons.  1. My father was living with us for much of this summer while he was renovating his home.  2.  Since I preserve/can a lot of our foods, I added $100/month to better allow me to buy an abundance of local produce while it was in season and fresh.  I hope this challenge will help me to make up for that extra $200 and help with our family budget.  I did a challenge similar to this last  year, and it helped me to better learn what foods we might want to store for emergency preparedness. 

I’ll try and update you all on how we are doing along the way.  Here is the meal plan:


Monday Cereal and milk with frozen blueberries
Tuesday Pancakes from the freezer
Wednesday Cereal and milk
Thursday Egg toast with any leftover Italian sausage from last night’s supper
Friday Cereal with milk and frozen strawberries
Saturday Dipping eggs (eggs over easy) with homemade biscuits and watermelon from the garden (if ripe by then).
Sunday Omelet with veggies from the garden and any leftover biscuits
Monday Boiled eggs and fruit
Tuesday Cereal and milk/any leftover sausage and biscuits from last night
Wednesday Soaked Oatmeal 
Thursday Leftover baked oatmeal
Friday Cereal and milk
Saturday Strata and fruit
Sunday Leftover strata

Hubby tends to eat breakfast on the go during the work week.  I’ll try and make up a few batches of muffins during this time, and he also has pop tarts in the pantry.  Muffins might substitute for some of the breakfasts listed above for daughter and me, too.


Monday Turkey sandwiches, chips and salsa, raisins
Tuesday Potluck luncheon at church.  We’ll bring a cobbler.
Wednesday Leftover pasta and sauce from Monday’s supper and any steak leftover from last night’s supper.
Thursday Pre-planned luncheon with a friend.  Will use gift certificate.
Friday Any leftovers from yesterday’s lunch supplemented with veggies from the garden and fruit from the freezer.
Saturday Sandwiches, chips, homemade peach ice cream
Sunday Leftover One Skillet Dinner from last night’s supper
Monday Any leftover pasta bake from last night’s supper
Tuesday Soup from the freezer
Wednesday PBJ (probably by that time made on homemade bread), organic yogurt and granola, mandarin oranges
Thursday Annie’s Mac and Cheese with any leftovers that need using
Friday Either peanut butter and honey sandwiches or any leftovers, organic yogurt and granola, raisins
Saturday Soup from the freezer
Sunday Sandwiches, chips or popcorn, frozen fruit


Monday Pasta and sauce
Tuesday Venison steak on the grill with my easy marinade, green beans, and couscous salad
Wednesday Italian sausages made by a local farmer, leftover couscous salad, sautéed squash, pickled beets
Thursday Potluck supper with church committee.  I’ll bring a cobbler.  Hubby and daughter will have pancakes.
Friday Frozen pizza (Tombstone)
Saturday One Skillet Dinner 
Sunday Vegetable pasta bake with veggies from the garden
Monday Sausage biscuits (local sausage, homemade biscuits), fried green tomatoes, canned corn, any cucumbers and tomatoes fresh from the garden
Tuesday Either baked potatoes with all of the fixings or salmon patties, squash, and sautéed pears that I canned last year
Wednesday Burgers, Green Giant Steamers with broccoli and rice (bought at Mega Event at Kroger), baked beans
Thursday Tuna noodle casserole
Friday Pizza (Tombstone)
Saturday Veggie meal—pinto beans, rice and whatever vegetables there are in the garden
Sunday Venison tenderloin, red lentils, pickled beets, rice

I remember from the last time I participated in a similar challenge that I craved sweets.  I’ll most likely make some cookies or other goodies during these two weeks to add to the snack list.

Monday Mandarin oranges
Tuesday Probably won’t need one, but if we do, we’ll munch on a cucumber from the garden
Wednesday Homemade pickles thanks to my sister-in-law
Thursday Frozen blueberries
Friday Homemade popcorn
Saturday Leftover popcorn
Sunday If we have enough milk, I’ll make pudding
Monday Frozen fruit and yogurt
Tuesday Black bean hummus and either homemade pita bread or veggies
Wednesday Nuts and raisins
Thursday Mandarin oranges
Friday Pretzels with peanut butter or yogurt to dip
Saturday Peach ice cream
Sunday Chips and salsa

I’ll probably switch around some days based on work schedules, fatigue, and what is fresh in the garden or needs using.  So, are you in?  Will you join me in this challenge?  I’ll start tomorrow, and I’ll keep you updated with my progress.

1 comment:

  1. Phew! You are so organized. I just spent about 3 weeks only buying essentials like Milk, Bread, Juice and what vegetables that I don't have growing in my garden. Good luck with your challenge!