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Spend Smart. Eat Smart.

Resource for using up ingredients

I don’t have a large kitchen which means I don’t have room to store ingredients I won’t use (or keep until they are so old I have to throw them out). In a fit of organization, I went through my cupboards and pulled out 9 items I needed to to use or get rid of. One internet site I like to use to search for recipes with specific ingredients is Allrecipes.com. You can put in the ingredients you want, those you don’t, and you have the choice to search all the recipes or by category. The only thing that is annoying is the pop-ups that ask if you want to become a member or a supporting member. Here are the 9 items and what I decided:

Spend Smart. Eat Smart.

Kitchen gifts that will help save money

I am not much for lining my countertops with one-use gadgets such as bun warmers, ice cream cone makers, rotisseries, hot dog cookers, rice cookers, single serving coffee makers, etc. But, I do think that some small appliances can help make cooking at home faster, easier, or cheaper. Here are a few ideas for your gift list:

Spend Smart. Eat Smart.

Stocking Stuffers for the Cook

‘Tis the season for the brain to turn to mush. Last night I stopped by a large department store to return an item. Since I was already in the store, I decided to try to be efficient and do some last-minute shopping for stocking stuffers. But, instead of being smart about my trip, I found myself just wandering through the store in a daze, and finally gave up and left with nothing in my hands. I decided to go home and get organized with a list. Just like grocery shopping, all smart shopping is better done with a plan.

Spend Smart. Eat Smart.

Organizing your kitchen

Organizing your kitchen will save you time and stress (any time of the year, but especially when we are doing lots of extra holiday cooking).

kitchens

How Being Organized Saves Money

Does an organized kitchen save money?  I say yes because:

Spend Smart. Eat Smart.

The Basics of Kitchen Organization

In the last few days, I’ve been reading a lot about organizing kitchens and how kitchen organization relates to saving money.  The three common themes I found are listed below:

Spend Smart. Eat Smart.

How to Organize the Kitchen Pantry

I think of myself as an organized person.  However, I know that I have a problem with clutter.  If you have not gotten to the back of your kitchen pantry in a long time, here is a step by step guide that I used last weekend.

Spend Smart. Eat Smart.

How to Clean and Organize Your Refrigerator

If you have been reading the SpendSmart blog lately, you know I am on a crusade to get my kitchen more organized.  After creating better centers in my kitchen and organizing the pantry, I started on the refrigerator. I hate wasting time hunting for items and juggling containers to make something fit in the refrigerator. Throwing away food, feels like throwing money in the trash. I save money and time with a more organized refrigerator.

kids-in-kitchen

It’s Worth a Little Mess

My 3 ½ year old son Parker loves to help me in the kitchen. When he realizes I’m cooking, he quickly goes and gets his stool so he can stand and help me. Even though cooking takes longer, and we make more messes, I enjoy spending time with him in the kitchen. He is a picky eater, so when he helps me prepare different foods, he is more likely to try them.

chef mincing bell peppers with knife

Knives 101

src=”http://blogs.extension.iastate.edu/foodsavings/files/2015/10/ThinkstockPhotos-83163393-354×300.jpg” alt=”Chef mincing bell peppers with knife” width=”300″ height=”254″ />A sharp kitchen knife is a good investment. Good knives make cooking easier and most importantly, sharp knives are safer than dull ones. A sharp knife is going to do what you expect it to do. It will slide smoothly through foods and not slip or get caught. When knives slip, that’s when cuts tend to happen.

2016 Healthy and Homemade calendar

Healthy and Homemade Meals Calendar – Final Quantity Available Now

src=”http://blogs.extension.iastate.edu/foodsavings/files/2015/10/2016-Chalkboard-Cover-e1446065801770.jpg” alt=”2016 Chalkboard Cover” width=”300″ height=”217″ />How would you like to start each month of 2016 with a tasty new recipe to try?

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Gifts for the Cook

Last week I wrote about food gifts I’m planning to give to family and friends. This got me to thinking about what gift ideas for me I could share with my family. As someone who enjoys spending time in the kitchen cooking, I looked around my kitchen to see what I needed. Here are a few ideas I came up with: