Thursday, January 20, 2011

Frugal Cooking Tips: Buy in Bulk or On Sale

There are many ways to cut down on the cost of cooking. Over the course of these next posts I'll try to highlight some of the frugal cooking techniques that I used.

You might find by following a few of these your costs will go down AND the quality of your meals will go up.

BUY IN BULK and WHEN ON SALE: Whenever possible, buy in larger quantities. Of course you have to be able to store the extras. It does you no good to buy mass quantities that then go stale, spoil or have to be thrown out.

My husband is always reminding me that the freezer or the pantry isn't a savings account!!

Our local market had these beef chuck roasts on sale. Buy one get one free!! How can I resist? . I purchased two 3 pound roasts. So...... priced at 5.19 a pound my actual cost per pound is 2.59 per pound. Now THAT'S more like it. Freezing one today and cooking the other as an oven pot roast with separately roasted, carrots, potatoes, onions and home made rolls.

This is an easy peasy recipe and when you are done there will be ample left over meat for another meal, like a beef enchilada casserole, minestrone soup or pot roast sandwiches.

(I need to note here that I am cooking for two adults. If you have more in your family, then you should adjust accordingly. We two adults will be able to get 2 to 3 meals from this recipe.)


  • 3 lb beef chuck roast
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 4 tbsp or so of oil
  • one small onion chopped
  • 2 bay leaves (if you have some big deal)
  • 4 to 5 cloves garlic coarsely chopped
  • 2 stalks celery chopped in 2 inch pieces leaves included

Pre Heat the oven to 325.

Salt and pepper the roast on all sides. Roll the roast in the flour In a dutch oven heat some of the oil and sear the roast on all sides, about 3 minutes to a side. Remove the roast and make a bed of the onion, celery and bay leaf. Put the roast back onto the pan, cover and roast for about 30 minutes. Turn the heat down to 300 and roast for another hour or hour and half.


  • 5 or 6 medium sized red potatoes cut into eights
  • 3 large carrots peeled and cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 1 red onion peeled and cut into 1 1/2 inch chunks
  • any other root type vegetable or winter squash that you may have hand cut into similar size pieces
  • garlic salt
  • cracked pepper
  • spices that you may have like parsley, basil, tarragon..whatever
  • olive oil, about 1/4 cup or less

During the last half hour, on a separate sheet pan or shallow roasting pan, drizzle the vegetables with the olive oil and toss well to coat. Sprinkle with garlic salt, pepper and the spices that you desire. Roast along side the pot roast, stirring the vegetables a couple of times with a spatula.

Remove the pot roast and let set for 10 to 15 minutes. In the meantime if the vegetables are not done or you would like them a bit crisper, crank up the heat and stir them again to ensure even cooking.

If you would like, make some gravy with the drippings in the pot roast pan.

Pot roast can be as simple as you want it to be, like this recipe, or you can jazz it up. The trick is long slow cooking of an inexpensive cut of meat to create a tender and juicy roast.

No comments: