Pantry inventory, raid, and planning!

I find it amazing that with shelves of food, I still find that I need to shop to make meals! I do  tend to buy what is on sale, and buy in bulk if it’s a good sale, so that builds up my stores. But since sales are on a 12 week cycle, sometimes I get more than I need for that 12 weeks and then have more than I need…and then I get more on sale! It’s only saving money if you actually use what you have, right?

Now seems like a good time to inventory your pantry and cupboards and put what you have to good use. If you still have holidays coming up, I would imagine that you have a lot of food ready to celebrate–and your budget (and waistline?) could use the break around those holidays. If not, well…couldn’t we all use a break? And with all of the ingredient sales going on now, and healthier food sales to come (as whatever percentage of Americans decide they need to diet), shouldn’t we know what we have and what we will need?

I tend to store up lots of different things which then get pushed to the back. I like to buy new snacks and items that I think would be good to try, but some of the time, those get lost.

Right now, I’m motivated to do this because 1. I have a break from school (I teach college courses), so theoretically more time, and 2. My pantry is bulging with seemingly “nothing” to make, and my freezer has lots of odds and ends with “nothing” to eat, and 3. Passover (spring holiday requiring basically all new prepared foods) is coming!

Let’s start today with a list of what you have in the following places (not marked for use at a specific function):

  • Kitchen pantry/cupboards (dry goods, cans, cereals, grains, sauces)
  • Refrigerator (partially opened jars, sauces, anything else with an up and coming use-by date)
  • Freezer (list both complete meals and pieces)

My goal is to get this done by this Friday. That’s all that has to get done for right now–we’ll work with the lists next week.


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