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Hangry? Have no despair, I’ve got you covered. I’m writing today about some of our recent favorite frugal snacks in our home. Having some quick and relatively easy snacks as a busy mom is like gold to me. That said, quick doesn’t always come cheap.
These snacks cost pennies to make, can be allergy friendly, and don’t take hours in the kitchen. They taste awesome, store well, and have multiple purposes. They’re like the girl next door of the snack world, trust me. 🙂
Saving money on snacks is important to me because we want to pay of the house quickly – as in before I turn 30. Now that I’m a mom, snacks help keep baby (and Mama) from melting down. Wins all ’round. Saving this way has has helped us trim our grocery budget to $75 a week for a family of 3.
Having frugal food options on hand can make doing the big things like parenting, paying off debt and working more enjoyable.
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Country Fair Kettle Corn
I made my first kettle corn this month after a long afternoon of running errands. I became a slight bit hangry and didn’t have much money before payday.
With less than $5 in the grocery envelope I really didn’t want to go over budget.
In the checkout line, I saw kettle corn for sale. I had all the ingredients at home to make it at home for less. Bingo!
Once home, I followed this highly-rated recipe and tried a few batches myself. This stuff tastes just like kettle corn you may find at a fair for so much cheaper. It was quick to make and can be customized to most preferences.
This recipe is fairly forgiving. I used canola oil and am thinking of using coconut for a special occasion. When I make this again, I’ll consider bringing it to a potluck, game night or movie night. Even plain popcorn is fun to eat. There’s many ways to make it a healthy snack without the unneeded additives.
This hack came by trial-and-error while visiting some friends in Fort Collins. We spent the night with them and bought some food for our stay. With our leftovers from this ingredient, we used it in our home-brew coffee the next day. This was a total game changer for me.
I love getting mochas at fancy coffee shops, but always pay more and worry that it might be unsafe for my breastfed daughter. At over $5.00 for fru-fru coffee at some places, buying our alternative and adding it to brewed at home coffee is a big money saver.
Having small indulgences like this help make our journey a lifestyle of frugality or simply give you more freedom to spend as you please.
While shopping to fit my daughter’s latest food allergies, I noticed that the grocery store sells many breads for over $3 a loaf. Many of them had fillers and other allergic ingredients that my daughter couldn’t have. I found one brand that was safe to eat, but it cost over $6 for a small loaf.
Not going to happen.
So, I went searching. Bread couldn’t be that hard to make. I looked online and found an amazing recipe that cost pennies compared to our alternatives. There’s three ingredients instead of 50 and it really is crusty and rustic like something that would come direct from France. Highly recommend it.
Kombucha is popping up in grocery stores all over. And for good reason. It’s a fermented tea filled with live probiotics and goodness. It tastes amazing and has many supposed health benefits. The downside is a little jar is $3 or more.
Our favorite hippie friends have home hombrew Kombucha and were glad to share with us. They gave us a free SCOBY (symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast) to help us get started.
We’re thankful to have such awesome friends. If you don’t have a free SCOBY, the place that sells almost everything has them here. We bought a dispenser to make it easy to pour and serve. Cheese cloth is also helpful.
If you are interested in more information, this tutorial is a good place to start.
Kombucha is becoming more widely available in our area. The stores are selling it for $4+ a bottle. Making it at home is always a conversation starter and an obvious way to save money.
We’re always looking for ways to save money and spend it in the areas that matter most. Taking time for some adventures in the kitchen makes saving money more fun and sustainable than depriving ourselves of everything.
What are your favorite frugal snacks?