November 22, 2017

Tasty Tuesday: Pantry Challenge Update


It’s the last day of the month, which means my January Pantry Challenge has come to a close. We started out by understanding the need to get organized and I offered a simple Freezer Checklist that might help. Then we addressed the issue of stockpiling food and when is “enough, enough?” If you haven’t read the comments, there is lots of great wisdom in them. I interrupted my Pantry updates, by sharing about Game Day foods and my love for this Beer Dip recipe, even though I don’t drink beer.

Truth be told, it was officially interrupted twice this month when we hit the Pepperidge Farms Thrift Store I(and got two cartloads of items – hello – Goldfish for a quarter) and then when my hubby came home with a fridge full of some amazing mark down meat specials declaring, “You will be so proud of me. They had double stickers on them.”

I almost scolded, well, in fact, I may have started to chastise him for interrupting our Freezer and Pantry Challenge until I realized just what an act of service that was, and only a nagging wife would not appreciate the great shopping. So I shut my mouth, realized I had taught him well, and chuckled when our teen age sons declared him a hero for actually stocking up some great food in the midst of our challenge. 😉

Over all, the month has been a huge success, but I did not attack our chest freezer nearly enough to de-thaw it, which was one of my main goals. There’s still a 20 pound organic Turkey that I purchased for only $0.99/pound after Thanksgiving that I need to cook up, as well as a plethora of other unnamed objects that have disappeared into the abyss, but we only spent approximately $400 for our family of seven, so I was thrilled with the savings. I am actually going to extend my Freezer challenge through February and not make any frozen food purchases, since the food in the freezer must be eaten up and March is National Frozen Foods month. I want it cleared out since lots of stockpile deals will be occurring then.

I made so many crazy, yet yummy concoctions this month, which I will slowly post, but here are just a few new recipes that I recently posted using only  ingredients that I had on hand.

Lots of yummy soups accompanied with  Homemade Dumplings and these easy popovers (regular and cinnamon sugar sweet popovers)

I cleared up the mystery of London Broil and you all gave some great London Broil recipes (so moist and delicious)

Cheesy Cracker Chicken Recipe (3 ingredients)

Cheese and Egg Puff Recipe (but clear out your fridge and make it a meal)

I’ll follow up one more time as I work my way through this freezer because I am going to have to get awfully creative with what lurks in it, while still having my kids think I am a half way decent cook.

How did the rest of you do? Did anyone try the Pantry Challenge this month for any portion of time?

Remember, just jump in and give it a try. Even if it’s just for a week, use up what you have and be challenged to more creative in the kitchen.

Check out how my other friends made this Pantry Challenge work for them:

Thanks for sharing your Tasty Tuesday inspiration. (If you are reading through a reader or by email, click over to check out over 100 recipes that are shared each week.)

Simple Rules for Tasty Tuesday Parade of Foods –  As always, please link directly to your recipe post and not your blog URL, so that everyone can find the recipe months from now.

Also, link back here in your post so that everyone can join in the fun, it’s just common courtesy of blog carnivals. Please do not link up a recipe meme that you have started. Thanks for your understanding.


  1. Some of the best recipes come from improvising during pantry months! Thanks for hosting. I’ve linked up Pretzel Coated Honey Mustard Chicken Tenders.


  2. Cleaning out the pantry and freezer is hard! I tried it too, but I’m just never in the mood for hamburger helper :). I did manage to clean out and use most of the food in the freezer, and I spent about $50 on average each week, which is amazingly nothing for us! So thanks for putting us up to the challenge!


  3. Jen, I would have caved in and bought the goldfish too! It ‘s a future investment. I’d love for you or some of your readers to share their make ahead or freezer friendly recipes at are having a freezer frenzy every Monday. Thanks


  4. Thanks for hosting!

    I shared a DIY Coconut Cream Pie Lara Bar Recipe and a post about making your own sourdough from scratch.

    Have a good one!



  5. What a great husband! My teenage boys would be pretty excited to have dad bring home meat like that. There’s just something about growning boys and their meat. Since we just moved my pantry and freezer challege was a little bit different. I needed to stock my freezer without going over budget. We do have a freezer full of venison and wild hog that is waiting to be turned into sausage, but we started the month with no other meat. Today we have 2 pot roasts and 3 whole chickens – not tons but progress. I also canned some of the venison to use for “beef” tips and gravy.


  6. I didn’t get my freezer entirely cleaned out either! However, my dh helped this weekend by pulling out all the frozen cherry tomatoes and making them into gravy. I plan to go through the 2 freezers this week to see what’s left, and hopefully combine the 2 into 1. 1 freezer desperately needs defrosting!

    I wouldn’t turn down marked down meat either. I think that’s so much harder to find than sales on other items.


  7. I really want to make the cinnamon popovers one of these days!


  8. Thanks for hosting. I never got to partake in the pantry challenge. We’re one of those sad folks that couldn’t make it more that a week on pantry items. Maybe I should stock up 🙂

    I’m sharing a maple apple tarte tatin with maple cream.


  9. Im far from cleaning out either pantry or my freezer but we did a great job this month. Between m’honey & I, we spent about $130 total on milk, half & half, eggs, bread, marjorine (he insists) & 20 pounds of chicken breasts that were on sale that was too good to pass by.

    I didnt have room in my freezer for the chicken, so I canned it. 🙂 It was my first forey into canning meat on its own. I have canned meat & veggie soups though, so I wasnt completely out of my comfort zone.
    I’d been wanting to do this for a while so it was my opportunity. It was easy as pie & turned out great! Im tickled with my canned chicken & the confidence it gave me to know I dont have to worry about the electricity going off and some of my meat will survive. Oh the plans I have in my head. 😉

    I also made your 3 ingredient chicken breasts.. they were yummy & super tender! Thanks for sharing something so simple & so good.

    I need to keep going on the freezer challenge as well.. Course, I tend to eat from it most of the time, stocking up on meats when they’re at rock bottom prices along with everyting else we eat.
    Home economists at their best! 😉

    Have a great day!


  10. didn’t know that recipe was called egg puffs – I always do it in a 9×13 pan with spinach – and eliminate the flour (we are GF) and it works just fine! I’m gonna try adding bacon and using as an instant breakfast this week!


  11. I am so inspired!

    Thanks for hosting 🙂


  12. Our Pantry Challenge month has gone great! My deep freeze that could barely close at the beginning of the month has just the bottom barely covered and will pretty much be cleared out by the end of this week. I set a budget of $45/week to spend at the grocery and only exceeded it by 1.61 one week. My husband was VERY leary about this but has realized he hasn’t starved (although I think he’ll be thankful it’s over!) Complete success and room to cook and stock-up again!


  13. I tried dumplings the other week and the popovers were a huge hit with my family! They were so easy to make and so yummy! Like cinnamon sugar home-made donuts. I’ll probably be making them this weekend too. Thanks for the recipes!


  14. Thanks for hosting this is my first link up!


  15. I haven’t done very well with a pantry challenge this time – I need to be a little more organized!



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