Monday, March 26, 2012

Money Saving Tips as told by a 21 Year Old.

Hopefully the title hasn't thrown you off too much, I do realize that many young people are not all that mindful of saving money. But here again, I am a little bit strange on things. So if you are looking to save money I offer up a challenge:

Make a list of everything that is in your freezer.

To easy? Fine, add the number of servings of pasta and rice you have along with other things such as vegetables, premade pizza crusts, bread, etc.

On my freezer right now there is a handy little paper hanging there that tells me I have 11 snack size bags stuffed with frozen tortellini from SAMs, 3/4 lb ground beef, various chicken strips, etc. I am a college student and I share a freezer, so your list would conceivably be much larger than mine. But regardless, I made this list and soon discovered that I could easily make it to the middle of April without having to by anything such as meat, or really anything that has to be in a freezer. I will of course have to keep buying eggs and things.

Not only has this list helped me see what all I have and what I can pass on buying, but it's helping me meal plan. For instance, I can look and see that I have a whole lot of rice, compared to just a small amount of a certain kind of noodles, so maybe I choose rice this time instead. It also helps me keep a good variety of meals being cooked because I see what I have not checked off in a while and therefore might choose that over the pasta I have eaten multiple nights in the month.

I originally did this so that I could spend a minimal amount of money before I moved back home for the summer and waste as little as possible. Now I could see me doing this long term because I am really enjoying the benefits.

My next money saving tip is cut chicken breasts in half through the side to make two chicken breasts, especially for sandwiches. I usually do this or I use chicken tenderloins and cut them in half just shy of completely through to make one breast sized piece. I personally like to pound my chicken out a bit to make it thin and to break the stringy tendons and connections inside. It's the perfect idea for frying because they will cook so much faster. And when you order something like chicken di pana at Cheesecake Factory, I am nearly certain this is what they do as well. It stretches your chicken twice as far, and you still get that yummy bird taste.

I also divide my ground beef into 4ths. I understand that this would not necessarily work for a family of 4, but I still would argue that almost everyone and every family could cut the amount of beef they put in any pasta dish, spaghetti, and similar in half. I cook up fourth pound sections at a time and still usually split them between two meals.

I really haven't found any amazing secrets for pork yet, other than using thin tenderloin sections that a pack of 6 costs under 3 bucks. That's pretty good as far as I'm concerned.

Always throw cherry tomatoes or slice up big tomatoes and toss them in the freezer when they start to wrinkle instead of tossing them out. You can use these for roasted veggie dishes later and they work just as well as fresh, if not better. Also, save the broth off a big pan of roasted meat and veggies and make soup! You likely have all the ingredients like noodles and such to add in, and it won't contain nearly the sodium and preservatives that the cans will. And it's just that much more you save in money and don't waste in products you bought. That is one of my favorite things to do.

Hopefully I can get better and more creative about this, but seriously make the freezer list. You will be SHOCKED just how much stuff you have in there. Pin It Now!

No comments:

Post a Comment