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Ontario, Canada
I am a wife, mother and grandma who enjoys the many aspects of homemaking. A variety of interests and hobbies combined with travel keep me active. They reflect the importance of family, friends, home and good food.
Cook ingredients that you are used to cooking by other techniques, such as fish, chicken, or hamburgers. In other words be comfortable with the ingredients you are using.
--Bobby Flay

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  • [January 15, 2016] - It's National Soup Month so this month's posts will focus on soups. Yum!
  • [February 1, 2016] - An interesting report on why you should always choose organic tea verses non-organic: Toxic Tea (pdf format)
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Monday, March 08, 2010

Frugal Kitchens 101 - Saving on Beverages

Frugal Kitchens 101
Whether or not you realize it a good portion of your food dollars go towards beverages. Purchased beverages range from the water coming from your tap and make no mistake you are paying for that water to juices, hot beverages and soft drinks. Not only are beverages consumed at meal time they are consumed several times throughout the day so they have the potential to have a substantial impact. This weeks Frugal Kitchens 101 focuses on ways to lower the costs of beverages.

  • water - Water coming from the tap costs us so paying extra for bottled water is not only environmentally unfriendly but also a waste of money. Invest in a good water filter that filters out particulates, chlorine and fluoride along with refillable water bottles and use those. In the long run it is cheaper and an eco-friendly way to get clean water. Increase your water intake to 4 L or 1 gal per day which will be healthier and cheaper for you while reducing other beverages. Increased hydration helps clear colds, resolve upper respiratory infections, increase skin tone and helps rid the body of toxins.
  • soda pop - Soda is fully of artificial sweetners, sugar and/or high fructose corn syrup. It has no nutritional value other than empty calories. What many people don't realize is both canned pop and soda fountain pop contains enough mold to cause allergic reactions and respiratory problems. Futher increasing the health concerns is canned pop in particular has trace amounts of BPA (bis-phenolA) from the can coating so in all respects soda pop is about one of the worst things you can drink. But it gets better since asparatame is a neurotoxin, one willing drank by millions on a daily basis. The best course of action is to eliminate soda pop from your diet in terms of heath and food dollars. If you can't or don't want to eliminate pop from your diet then you should at least greatly reduce it substituting another beverage.
  • teas - In general teas are a great value for your dollar whether they be tea or herbal based. Save money by buying in bulk or loose tea with a tea ball. Always make your tea in a tea pot rather than a cup as you will get double the amount of tea from one tea bag or tea ball. Teas make lovely specialty drinks as well as iced drinks. Homemade ice tea is considerably cheaper than even ice tea mix and it doesn't have all the sugar, preservatives, artificial colours or flavours. Flavour homemade ice tea with a sprig or two of mint or lemon balm and lemon slices or come up with your favourite combinations by mixing herbal teas with green or black tea. Sweeten with a little honey.
  • coffees - Coffee is another great value for your dollar if you make your own at home and that include specialty coffee drinks. Invest in a good coffee maker/purcolator, coffee grinder and espresso machine (if you are into specialty coffees). While has a larger initial outlay financially this equipment will pay for itself if you make your specialty coffees at home rather than buying at one of the coffee houses. Buy good quality coffee beans and grind them yourself in the quantity you will use for that pot of coffee. Grinding beans only takes a couple of seconds but the flavour is well worth it! Try reducing the amount of coffee you drink in a day as well especially if you are over 2 cups per day.
  • fruit juices - Most commercially prepared fruit juices are laden with sugar. Did you know the average person consumes 66 pounds of sugar annually just from fruit juices? That is a horrendous amount of sugar! Invest in a steam juicer (about $40) or a powered steam juicer (about $30 and up) then make your own juices without all the sugar added. Can or freeze the juice for later use as well. Not only will this be cheaper for you but also healthier. If you don't want to make your own juices, then make sure you read that label. Always buy the no sugar added varieties. Avoid the tetra paks that are not environmentally friendly as well. Quite often juices go on sale just before school starts and March break so watch for those sales.
  • milk - In Canada there are few ways to save on milk other than reducing the amount you drink. The reason for this is milk prices fall under the Dairy Board regulations so you won't see any great sales on milk. Many have expressed concerns that milk is not necessary for healthy adults so if you don't like milk and are otherwise healthy then don't worry about drinking milk. Concerns have also been expressed that even children do not need to drink milk if they are getting a good supply of calcium from other sources. Milk can be replaced nutritionally so if you want to reduce costs check out some of the ways of getting calcium through other foods.

2 food lovers commented:

A Year on the Grill said...

timely post for me... teas are indeed becoming our beverage of choice here

Garden Gnome said...

Tea is just such a great beverage. It's low cost yet comforting in the winter and refreshing in the summer :)