Kitchen Challenge Update

If you read last week Kalissa and I are working together on a kitchen challenge.  Both of us have full cupboards and full freezers and want to use things up.

Make sure to check out Kalissa’s take on our kitchen challenge HERE.

Our goal is to only spend $100 on groceries from April 15th to May 15th.  We aren’t allowed to buy meat and we both want to focus on using that money on perishable products like milk, fruits, and veggies.

So how did I do….Great!

On spending, I spent…NOTHING!!  Kelli and Karl did bring me a gallon of milk…but I didn’t pay for it.  HA.  Is that cheating??

I did a good job using things up that were in the refrigerator and in the cupboards.  I got out a BIG package of black forest ham.  I think it was a five-pound package.  I ate several sandwiches of ham.  Kalissa was here and did the cooking.  She made a meat-lovers pizza and put lots of ham on it.  I fed the kiddos wraps with ham two different times this week.  I made some Brazillian meat that includes lots of different meat.  I’ll share that recipe with you on another day…and I made an egg bake.

I thought I would share the egg bake recipe with you as it is so-so easy.

Here goes the recipe…

Spray a pan with cooking spray.  Sprinkle shredded cheese in the bottom.


I did a 9″ x 9″ pan.  I cracked nine eggs into the pan.  Take a fork and break the yolks.

Sprinkle ham over the top.

Sprinkle shredded cheese over the top.


Bake in the oven for 25 minutes at 350 degrees or until the eggs aren’t runny.

When it comes out it should look like this…

When I ate mine I added some cilantro on the top.

This is quick and very easy.  It’s great to serve as breakfast if you have company.  This with a muffin is a nice breakfast.  When I have lots of kids home I often make this.  Then I use a 9 x 13 pan and crack 15 eggs into the pan.

So the ham got used up over the course of the week.  No…I didn’t get a lot of other meat out of the freeze but that did get used up with no waste.  YAHOO!!

So far I’m liking the challenge.  Rather than just buy more of something, this is making me check the cabinets to see if I have some of whatever it is.

I did gift some chia seeds and a big quart jar of honey to Kalissa.  I had too much of both for me to reasonably use.  I threw out half of a bag of nuts as they tasted funky.  As I go, I’m cleaning out the cabinets a bit too.  That makes the challenge doubly good.

Did you join us in the challenge?  How are you doing?  Please let us know in the comment section.  You can see Kalissa’s progress on the kitchen challenge HERE.  Make sure to come back next week…Kalissa mentions a soup recipe in her post.  It was amazing and she plans to share the recipe then.

17 thoughts on “Kitchen Challenge Update

  1. Karen H

    We are leaving on vacation today, and did manage to get the refrigerator whittled down to the bare bones. Supper last night was interesting – eating up leftovers of this and that without opening up or making anything new. As for cupboards and freezer, still pretty full, but nothing new has been added for awhile!

    Reply
  2. NJ

    In anticipation of moving 9 years ago, I cut way back on grocery shopping. It helped me to make a list of food to use up & cross it off. I always work best from lists. About once a week I fill a cake pan with frozen meat packages & keep it in the refrigerator. It fits my schedule to do the peeling & browning etc. for our dinner in the morning then go about my day instead of stopping & cooking in the late afternoon.

    Reply
    1. Teri DeGonia

      love the idea of cooking meat in the morning. I did that last weekend as we were working on the house and it helped because I was tired by the end of the day but was still able to make a nice meal without so much work. I will try doing that again.

      Reply
  3. Brenda in SC

    We joined in also on the clean out the freezer and cabinets challenge and so far so good. No new meats have been added. Only fresh fruits and vegetables. We have managed to cook a Boston Butt, 2 pounds of ground chuck, a pound of chorizo and 2 chicken breast from the stand up freezer. So I think we are doing fantastic as well.

    Reply
  4. Gail L Piper

    I used up a chuck roast and some chicken thighs – but then our local grocery ran a really good sale on chicken thighs and drumsticks… sigh…

    Reply
  5. Linda Lewis

    I have very little meat in my freezer but a lot of miscellaneous food. I took out banana bread, turkey noodle soup and wheat bread. I think tonight it’s going to be a tuna melt and brussel sprouts for dinner.

    Reply
  6. Carla

    I have to laugh because I’m doing the exact opposite. I’ve never had a real pantry nor any good place to store extra food. That is until a few months ago when my son, who’s in construction, brought home 5 beautiful vanity cabinets that a rich homeowner was just going to discard! With a bit of modification I now have a pantry area in my basement that I’m still in the process of stocking.

    Reply
  7. Kate

    Good work, Jo! The egg dish looks yummy and is so easy. I did not join the challenge but keep trying to use things from freezer too. Since my husband won’t eat beef or pork or fish, I don’t stock up on meats, except when turkeys or turkey breasts are on sale. It is also the reason I don’t enjoying cooking as much, but I do a lot of baking.

    Reply
  8. Barb Garman

    We moved in late summer. I had already started paring down supplies when the lockdown threatened. I grew up on a farm, and I prepare to never have an empty pantry. I stocked up again, with the goal of being able to go three weeks without a grocery trip. (And having sick food: soups, jello, rice, broths, etc in case either of us should succumb and need to be sick at home.) Since we lived in the Finger Lakes, I also bought a case of our favorite wines at Dr. Frank’s.

    Now, a year later, post move, I am cleaning out cabinets and making sure to use it up. Making sure that the oldest is in the front of the cabinets, taking inventory. Still prepared, but prudently using our cache. We haven’t finished the wine, though. Twelve bottles have last longer than twelve months. People and wine go together, and we have stayed in pretty much to ourselves. I am looking forward to introducing our new neighbors to the joys of Finger Lakes wines this summer.

    Reply
  9. The Joyful Quilter

    I definitely NEED to do this challenge with you and Kalissa!! Alas, I’m a lazy cook and this would take more mental energy than I currently have available. We did pull two frozen specialty mac and cheese ramakins out of the freezer and ate them with our Easter meal a few weeks ago. I’m considering that a WIN!!

    Reply
  10. Kim J LeMere

    I ‘m so glad I joined in this challenge and so far so good. I did buy 2 oranges and cream for our coffee but otherwise we ate what we had. I did some black beans and ring bologna, some ham sandwiches and soup and even made a throw together taco pie. I love this challenge, it gets me to use up what I have, evaluate what I do have and get rid of the beyond date. It amazed me how things get shoved into the back of the cupboard and lost.

    Reply
  11. Tina

    I think this is a great idea. I have also decided to work on clearing out the cupboards and buying less. Great for spring.

    Reply
  12. Tina

    I think this is a great idea. I have also decided to work on clearing out the cupboards and buying less. Great for spring.

    Reply
  13. Patt weimer

    Have taken inventory of freezer, shelves, pantry every 3 months. Posted the list in convenient local. I refer to it/ upgrade it every time i shop. Has worked well for last 50ish years. Now a widow, still works for myself, 2 golden doggos & the bangle cat. The time is worth it in $$$.

    Reply
  14. Susanne

    Yes we here have been doing a challenge also. Tired of searching for something and finding something else in the freezer that has freezer burn. So I suggested to hubby that we only try spending 25.00 a week on necessary items. So we can use up things in pantry and freezer.

    3 weeks later…. has been going well. The first week we spent $ 27.32. calculated in head at register and forgot about tax. Thats ok. 2nd week… husband shopped and spent 52.71. There were those things that need to be replenished too. 3rd week… I spent 44.93. Same idea as the beginning which is for us to use up what we have and try and by only what is needed. It has been going really well. I am a shopper that will keep doubles on hand because I don’t like running out.. Well now I think twice before putting in cart. But this test has shown me how much i’m saving by just pacing my self financially. So far I’ve saved $200 this month and will continue.. Hubby is very happy too!

    Reply
  15. Deborah Burville

    Hi Jo!
    I thought I would chime in regard to the “Funky” nut situation!
    I store ALL my nuts in the freezer.
    They don’t freeze solid like other food stuffs, so there’s no issue in being able to use them
    almost immediately.

    Reply

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