Coupon Queens Unite...And Other Money Saving Tips - GIVE THEM FOOD...and other ways to cope with life Blog at Allrecipes.com - 181979

GIVE THEM FOOD...and other ways to cope with life

COUPON QUEENS UNITE...and other money saving tips 
 
Jun. 22, 2010 4:48 am 
Updated: Sep. 6, 2010 12:16 am
OK, well, that was an interesting experiment....thanks to all who participated.  Although we live all over the place...we have one thing in common...we all want to save money on our food bills.  We were in AWE of some of you who seemed to spend so little and now we want to hear from you.  PLEASE TELL US HOW YOU DO THAT!!

*How does one start and maintain the whole couponing thing?

*What are your favorite coupon and other money saving web sites?

*What are your favorite money saving books?...cookbooks/financial plan books etc.

*What are your favorite time tested money saving tips?


This is my suggestion for a great money saving cookbook/website:   www.5dollardinners.com


Here is a great "Lasagna in a Pot" recipe...quick, fairly inexpensive ..and really yummy!
I may have given you this at one time, but here it is again...


SKILLET LASAGNA

28 oz canned crushed tomatoes
1 Tbsp tomato paste
1 cup water
2 tsp sugar
4 tsp olive oil
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
10-12 cremini mushrooms, sliced
2 med carrots, small dice
2  med celery stalks, small dice
4 med garlic cloves, minced
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1 1/2 tsp thyme
1 1/2 tsp oregeno
6 no boil lasagna noodles, broken into bit size pieces
S&P
up to 1/2 cup fresh parmesan
1/2" slices of FRESH mozzarella
fresh basil

  • Pour the tomatoes with juices, water, salt ,sugar and paste into a bowl and set aside.
  • Heat the olive oil in a pot with a lid
  • Add carrot, celery , onion and a pinch of salt....cook until slightly soft
  • add mushrooms
  • add garlic and pepper flakes
  • add spices
  • cook 30 seconds until fragrant
  • scatter broken pasta over vegetables  ***DO NOT STIR
  • pour sauce over pasta...***DO NOT STIR
  • cover and bring to light boil....reduce heat to med and simmer 20 min or until noodles are al dente
  • STIR OCCASIONALLY
  • when pasta is tender...lay mozzarella slices to cover the surface, cover and melt ..5 min.
  • cover surface with chopped fresh basil and parmesan cheese to taste.
  • stir, season and serve.
ENJOY!
 
Comments
cocojo 
Jun. 22, 2010 4:51 am
My favorite money saving book and website: www.5dollardinners.com.
 
Jun. 22, 2010 5:31 am
favourite $$ saving tips-take a grocery list with you and try to follow it...NEVER go hungry to the store...try to cut down your eating out by 1/3 or 1/2 for a couple months and see what happens. Don't cut it out totally, whean yourself off of the fast/restaurant food. Your health will thank you for it. And watch you impulse buying---just because there is a side of beef on sale does not mean you need to buy it. Do you have a plan for it? or will you be scouring for recipes on AR wondering what to do with the side of beef. Make small changes that you can stick with, then next month make another change:) The grocery store can be a very intimidating place so go in with confidence and be prepared!!:)
 
Jun. 22, 2010 6:17 am
That recipe sounds good! I think my best money saving tip is to plan a menu. Not one single grocery store on the island takes coupons, but one store has "Special Today" on expiring or discontinued items, so I buy a lot of those!
 
MK! 
Jun. 22, 2010 7:11 am
My grocery store doesn't have tons of sales - so I can't shop the sales. But I cut coupons - the trick is to only cut coupons for what you regularly buy, otherwise you end up spending MORE trying to use the coupons - unless it is a new product or something you want to try (you can send the ones you don't use yourself, and expired ones to army bases overseas, they can use them up to 6 months after the expiration date: http://www.grocerysavingtips.com/expiredgrocerycoupons.htm). We buy our meat in bulk at costco. You should always make a list and stick to it - no extras (unless it is something you always buy and you happen to see it on sale, then stock up on it!). Some people freeze veggies that they get really good deals on, but I haven't done that yet. I ALWAYS make my own chicken stock (take the chicken carcass, carrots, celery, onions, peppercorn and a bay leaf in the pressure cooker - bring to high pressure, slowly bring it to low and let it rock steadily at low for 45 min,then turn it off and let the pressure stop on its own - skim the fat and freeze for later use). Thats all I have for now :o)
 
glenda 
Jun. 22, 2010 7:23 am
Hi guys, I agree that one should only use cupons for things you buy anyway, unless you find a great cupon and deal. I have learned to check all the flyers first, example, walgreens, cvs, etc, and grocers. Also if I make meatloaf or spagetti, I always make a double batch to have for leftovers or freeze for another evening, that is a real time saver. Also once you check the sunday paper, if you find a really great cupon, go buy another paper or two, its well worth the extra 2.50 for all those savings. One last thing, if I find a super deal I always stock up, especially if its something we use a lot. Hope this helps. glenda
 
bondgurl 
Jun. 22, 2010 9:30 am
Check out hotcouponworld.com (the forums are a goldmine of info!) and moneysavingmom.com.
 
Jun. 22, 2010 9:49 am
Shop the perimeter of the store. That will take you through produce, dairy and meats. Around here most of the coupons are for very processed food or quantities that only make sense for a large family. Learn where things you buy are located in your grocery. The less you have to cruise the aisles the fewer impulse buys to tempt you.
 
Jun. 22, 2010 5:50 pm
I make a list of everything I need or want and then I check the fliers. I hit all of the buy one get one frees and check to see if I have coupons to go with them and what do you know, now and then I do. I've walked out of publix with four bags of groceries for $10. I also try to plan my meals a little so that well for an example: I boil a chicken and take half and make chicken salad or chicken quesadies. Then I use the other half of the chicken and cut it up to make alfredo which then I also use the broth from boiling the chicken (It makes my alfredo less fat and less expensive.) I add garlic and veggies. With that I can make two TV dinners for the boys. I use the vegg's that I didn't cook to make another dish and I can of just add on as I'm going. I also have a greate meathod for the crockpot and beans. This also helps to cut down the expensives and nothing goes to waste.
 
Jun. 22, 2010 6:40 pm
www.coupons.com is my fav for coupons. They will send you reminders and let you know the local coupons as well.
 
kylee 
Jun. 23, 2010 12:24 am
Coco..great topic! Two years ago the hubby and I sat down to see how much we were spending on eating out and groceries. Wow talk about shock! Since we were eating out so much and buying so many groceries we were wasting alot. We still eat out, but we plan 12 meals (lunch and dinner) a week and plan on eating out twice. Our budget for groceries is $75 (only food). We've stuck to it until recently since we're buying more from the outer part of the grocery, buying more natural products, and the farmers market. I buy coupons from ebay and thecouponclippers.com that way if there's a great coupon I can get a few of the same products I will use at a great price.
 
Jun. 23, 2010 1:01 am
The funny part is that I don't do anything special. I don't plan meals (I'm terrible at it), my list consists of whatever is about to run out so that I can re-stock it, or things I need for something I want to make *the next day*. The only planning ahead I do is if I've got something to use up, I pull out 2-3 recipes that use it. We have coupons in the Sunday paper, assuming I remember to get it. I don't save on coupons the way I used to, but I'm certainly capable of it. And I get coupons from Krogers and have my little card thiny. I DO buy stuff not on my list, and I DO go up and down the aisles looking at stuff. I'm mostly looking for a) stuff that I just get and never put on a list, b) things on sale, or c) occasionally just an impulse buy. However, I get on here and do a search to use ingredients up so even if it wasn't on my list, I generally find a way to use it. As long as I'm going to eat it. :-) I also use coupons for things I wouldn't otherwise buy, but generally only because it's an expensive item that I'll only get if I have a coupon. (Or something new to try.) I stay away from really expensive stuff most of the time. Like I love fruit juice but all the bottled junk is very expensive so I always get the frozen, just for example. And I'll get store brands if they're any good. I freeze meat so I get some when it's on sale or in the mark-down section. I used to worry about it more when I had to pinch pennies more, but I don't have to do that anymore and I got sick of it. But I still like to save if I can, but none of it is really planned or thought out - I just do it. (Habit?) It helps that I don't drink pop or coffee or get a lot of snacks... but then there's the wine. LOL.
 
Janet 
Jun. 23, 2010 5:04 pm
We rarely see coupons in the mail or newspapers in Canada. I rely on the sales flyers and luckily they are pretty decent. I have an inventory of my staple items (things I will use often), and I will make sure that it is always in a healthy amount (toothpaste, toilet paper, soaps, cereal, pasta noodles etc). I restock when there is a good sale so that I typically should never run out of inventory and have to buy at full cost. I have a freezer and do the same with meats. Sometimes items are marked down in the grocery stores and I will freeze or use it that day for our meal (can get 30-50% off). I make my own jams, pickles, and some relishes (I love to be able to can things). I am like you Erimess in that I will call up an ingredient and try a recipe from it, I have found some great recipes on this site that I have tried and some I am waiting to try when the weather gets cold again. I love my coffee and could skip the wine. I am not one to plan a whole week of meals at this time of the year, but I do in the fall and winter months. Having my mini warehouse helps me out with costs.
 
cocojo 
Jun. 24, 2010 6:14 am
Thanks for all the info!...I'll be up in Canada for a few days...mother in law has had emergency surgery..so may not be on AR for a few days!
 
Jun. 25, 2010 11:38 am
Things I do so that I make the most of the coupons. 1. I only cut them out if it is actually something we use. 2. I cut coupons the day I go to store. I have each flyer or list printed from website and attach coupons I plan to use. 3. I use coupons when the item is on sale. 4. Watch the stores I use ( Publix, Kroger and Food Lion) to watch their cycle of sales. I stock up when it is the least expensive. 5. I try my best to match the best deals on coupons with bonus offers from the stores ( example we use 1 gallon of milk a week, this week Smart Source milk is 3.39 for two half gallons, and I have 2 2.50 off coupons,so it will pay me 1.61 for buying it). It is work, but worth having extra or even enough money to get by and not be NUTS!
 
Jul. 7, 2010 8:09 pm
coupons aren't really an option for me, but I enjoy shopping at a few places and stocking up when things go on sale that I use regularly
 
angel white 
Sep. 6, 2010 12:16 am
this is very good site for cooking

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angel white Money Saving
 
 
 
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cocojo

Member Since
May 2009

Cooking Level
Professional

Cooking Interests
Baking, Stir Frying, Italian, Mediterranean, Healthy, Vegetarian, Dessert, Quick & Easy, Gourmet

Hobbies
Gardening, Reading Books, Music, Painting/Drawing, Charity Work

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About Me
Loving life at 50ish. Kids are gone and I'm focusing on my career! I enjoyed running a chocolate truffle business for 3 years and now teach adults and children about chocolate. I also teach hands on cooking classes at a local cooking school and am writing my first cookbook! Please visit me at my blog www.allrecipes.com/cook/givethemfood
My favorite things to cook
I love to cook almost anything but particularly enjoy Italian. I have been studying Vegetarian and Vegan cooking for the last few years and love to make healthy meals.
My favorite family cooking traditions
from scratch cinnamon buns on Christmas morning...they take forever but Oh! so worth it!
My cooking triumphs
landing my dream job as a teaching chef.
My cooking tragedies
when I was teaching myself to cook way back in college, I made these wonderful oatmeal raisin cookies for my roomies....only problem was I forgot the flour! The cookies became one big mass that overflowed the cookie sheet and made a huge mess in the oven!
 
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