Last year I did a bit of a Pantry Challenge here on the blog. I was working on using up some of the items in my pantry and freezer. Well…with grocery prices rising and my pantry full, I decided to give a pantry challenge another try.
This time, I’m doing it with a twist. I’m trying to use up my leftovers in the refrigerator a little better. If anyone wants to join me, you’re totally welcome to. I don’t know if I am going to check in weekly, but I will check in 2-3 times a month.
Here are some things I did over the last week or so…
I used refrigerator leftovers to make an AMAZING vegetable beef soup. I had a part of a can of green beans leftover, a steak, some aging raw carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, celery, onion, and some beef broth that were all in the refrigerator. I added some rice and a can of black beans from the pantry….There wasn’t enough liquid so I added two cups of water and some Better than Boullion along with some spices. I put it all in the Instant Pot for 4 minutes and WOW…it was some great soup. Karl was here and had some. He commented that I make some of the best food out of nothing.
Sandra from the Cresco Ladies brought me some …dried beans and this was in the box too. I’ve never made instant potatoes but last week when I had a crew here to feed I made up the whole bag. I added the remaining sour cream and chives I had in the frig along with some garlic powder. The potatoes were actually really good.
Carver and Gannon loved them.
When Kayla came she brought Dot’s Pretzels in the Honey Mustard Version. They were okay but no one was eating them. It was time to use them or throw them out. I ended up putting them in the food processor and crushed them into crumbs.
I used the crumbs to make Pork Tenderloins. Here is Georgie working on tenderizing the meat. She had so much fun helping, and I had fun too!!
The honey mustard pretzels were perfect for the breading. Everyone liked them. HERE is the recipe to make them. They are a HUGE family favorite!!
Another thing I did was use up some Crack Chicken Kalissa made and didn’t want. She had made some but Craig wasn’t a fan. I tried it and honestly, I wasn’t a fan either. For me, it was too salty. Being I had my reinforced mindset to not waste food I decided to figure out a way to use it up so…I took half of it, added some milk and a can of cream of chicken soup, and ate it with fettucini noodles for chicken fettucini. For the rest, I added some milk and ranch and used it for a chicken, bacon, and ranch pizza. Everyone who was here loved both of the dishes.
Had I not had this challenge going I admit I might have left it in the refrigerator too long and then ended up throwing it away. So, the challenge is already working.
As part of my challenge, I decided to clean this portion of the cupboard one day. Part of using what I have is knowing what I have!! This cabinet had not been cleaned recently. It needed some reorganization and throwing stuff out.
I had nuts in the cabinet and I had to throw a few partial bags out. It was painful BUT…it reinforced my need to go know what I have and then USE what I have.
Does anyone want to join me in a pantry/grocery challenge? The intention is just to be more aware of what I’m using in an effort to waste less. Each check-in, you’re welcome to leave a comment about some good food choices you made to help watch your food budget and usage. Hopefully, your great choices will encourage the rest of us to make good choices too!
Feel free to leave a comment over something you did recently…