You don’t have to be the Next Food Network Star to make pantry items from scratch. Here are 7 foods that are not only healthier, but more cost-effective to make at home.
Before you go running in the other direction, let me explain. There’s no need–or knead–to be afraid of making bread at home. Bread can actually be a very simple kitchen project with this No Knead recipe. The steps look intimidating at first, but the process is actually very hands off. 4 ingredients (one of them is water!) and a hot oven are about all it takes!
Trust me on this one. Homemade hummus is so delicious you’ll have a hard time keeping it stocked in your fridge for very long. You can even go one step further and cook the chickpeas in your slow cooker. Not only will this stretch your dollar further, you’ll avoid the additives sometimes included in canned beans.
3. Salad Dressing
For a simple foolproof salad dressing, combine 1 teaspoon good dijon mustard with 2 teaspoon acid (any kind of vinegar or citrus juice). Whisk in olive oil until you reach desired consistency (3-4 tablespoons). Taste. If the dressing is too tart, add a dash of honey. You’ll taste the difference!
According to Reuters, Americans throw away nearly half of their food a year. Shocking, right?! Take a note from the pros. Professional kitchens are masters at creating something from small budgets. Keep a gallon plastic bag in your freezer for vegetable scraps–ends of an onion (even the peels), carrot peels, herb stems, celery tops. Once you have a full bag, throw the contents into a crock pot, cover with water, add a bay leaf and peppercorns and turn it on low for 6-8 hours. Strain, cool and store. That’s all there is to homemade vegetable broth. Use the broth to flavor soups, grains or sauces.
With apple season around the corner, keep this idea handy. Your crock pot is about to become your best friend. Follow this slow cooker recipe for a sweet and healthy dessert you’ll be adding to everything–warm on vanilla ice cream, stirred into oatmeal, served alongside pork chops or straight out of the bowl with a big spoon.
6. Nut Butters
I was quite shocked to discover that the peanut butter I grew up eating was packed with added sugar and oils, especially when making your own is about as easy as pressing the on button on your food processor.
7. Pasta Sauce
You don’t have to have an Italian grandmother to make great marinara. Try this simple 4 ingredient recipe tonight. Now that’s amore!
Being a home cook doesn’t have to be difficult. These pantry staples you can make at home are simple and delicious!
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