Blogging the Recession

February 21st, 2009 by katie

I am sorry for the silence this week, I have been busy behind the scenes setting up a new strategy for my posts.  I love the swing towards frugality that is going on in the food blogging community right now.  As the economy is only getting worse: food prices are skyrocketing and gas prices are once again creeping upward, I really appreciate everyone’s efforts.  I will be participating in Hobo Mondays at TNS but really we are feeling the recession 24/7 in the chaos household.  So begins Blogging the Recession, a period in my blog life where we will be keeping strict track of the cost break-downs of our meals.  For example, beef and macaroni? Cheap.  Bacon wrapped Pork Tenderloin? Not Cheap.  Also, I will be highlighting homemade convenience foods (the best kind) since those are the real grocery store budget busters. 

Everyone loves a good cheap food event-for a couple weeks.  Then it’s all rice and beans this and rice and lentils that.  Cheap food is boring and gross and my kids won’t eat it and besides I can never find a chicken for 49¢ and I only buy gluten free soy free dairy free dye free grass fed shade grown food.  I hear you and I feel you.  I have no choice but to make food my kids will eat (try?) and they are normal kids who only want to eat chicken nuggets and hot dogs just like your kids.  I also feed 6 on most nights so if you have a big family no worries, if you don’t even better, now you have leftovers for lunch the next day.  I also will not compromise on the quality of my food, I do buy organic meats and dairy products and certain fruits and vegetables.  You don’t have to but I do, so the cost breakdowns will include the costs of those items which means it may be even cheaper for you.  I also buy my groceries at a local grocery store that takes coupons but does not double or triple them and that sells many locally produced items but no farmer’s market and no Walmart means you may also be able to buy these things cheaper than I do.  I will include the cost breakdown of the entire meal which means the bacon wrapped tenderloin with sweet potatoes and broccoli and corn bread was a brazillion dollars and I am not even going to talk about it. Even. 

So what justifies cheap food vs. not cheap food?  I am not sure yet, unfortunately.  Beef and macaroni was $8.14 for 6 servings (w/grass-fed beef, organic veggies, semolina pasta) but Bacon Wrapped Tenderloin Feast was $22 before I stopped counting (although in it’s defense it probably served 8 easily and was delicious).  My goal is to shoot to as close to $10 per meal as I can get, but we’ll see.  This isn’t Cheap Healthy Good so I am not including the cost of normal pantry items-to be determined by me and what’s in my pantry.  I will include any exotic or unusual pantry items: for example, the locally produced preservative free cornmeal I bought that was $1.79 for 4 cups. 

But Katie, I come here for the good food! Why do you forsake me?  Hey, I want to eat good food too and I want to prove that it can be done on a budget.  At least the next time you see good food here you will know you can probably afford to make it.

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Posted in Budget, Me, Pantry Challenge, Tips and Tricks

10 Responses

  1. Melissa

    I’ll still come here for the good food! It can definitely be done on a budget. And I need more ideas in my own house because we’ve been eating way too much pasta. Looking forward to seeing what you have in store. 🙂

  2. Lisa@The Cutting Edge of Ordinary

    What a great idea! I can’t wait to see what you come up with. I am always bargain shopping and trying to save when I can too. Tonight I’ve got a chicken concoction in the oven….we shall see how that turns out!

  3. noble pig

    I can’t wait to see your creation’s. Cheap can be good, it just takes more thinking!

  4. Tami Lyn

    I can’t wait to see what you come up with! I have taken a serious stance on our food bill. We started carrying cash for all food purchases and have budgeted $100 per week for four people. We have stuck to it for the last 7 weeks. It takes a little bit of time and work, but I enjoy that extra 200 to 300 dollars in my bank account at the end of the month.

  5. Stacy

    I love reading what other people have to say about budget friendly foods. Can’t wait to read more!

  6. DanaB

    I just stumbled upon your blog a few days ago–lovin’ it!

    Great recipes, great ideas–all practical and functional and delicious!


  7. Jill

    I’ve been doing the same kind of thing over on my blog – I can’t wait for your ideas! I’m always bored of the stuff we are eating (cheap and healthy though it is) so I’m constantly looking for newer, better, yummier, cheaper stuff. Based on what you usually post, I’m sure your “cheap” meals will be newer, better, yummier and cheaper, too!


  8. maggie (p&c)

    Thanks for doing this! I’m trying to stay in my budget, too, and blogging a few cheap recipes. Excited to see all of yours!

  9. Mama Chicken

    Hi just found you on Fooodbuzz today, and I love your blog! I kind of try to stick close to $10 as well (we have six in our family). I agree great food CAN be done on a budget. Looking forward to your posts and recipes – thanks for sharing with us!

  10. Kelly

    I just found your blog and this post has me hooked. I shop just like you do and we’ll be a family of 6 in just a few months so I think your meals will be a great fit for us!

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About chaos

cha·os -noun 1. a condition or place of great disorder or confusion. My chaotic kitchen is the result of three kids, two adults, dog, cat, and fish, a food obsession, a wine drinking hobby, and too few hours in the day. Between trying to feed a family of five healthy, happy meals, watching my weight, saving my pennies, and staying partially sane I have picked up a few tricks along the way. So here they are: the very best tips, tricks, and recipes from my chaotic kitchen-to yours!

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