There are times when we all look at our shopping trolley and wish we could shave a bit off the bill. Though savvy supermarket regulars can make savings here and there, the fact is that are some things for which we need to pay a premium. At least, that’s what we’ve been led to believe.
The truth is that we all waste money on thousands of products that we don’t need to buy at all. While it might seem convenient to cram our cupboards full of these ingredients, we can in many cases make amazing alternatives on our own for a fraction of the price we pay at the store. Complete with tips on how to prepare them yourself, here are eight grocery store items that you need to stop buying immediately.
Rather than going through tubs and tubs of prepared stock every time you need to make a gravy or stew, you’re far better off mastering how to make it on your own. It’s the easiest thing in the world to simmer the leftovers from last night’s dinner for a few hours, before sieving and putting aside to use whenever you need it.
If you’re sick of splashing out for what is essentially old bread and olive oil, you’re not alone. Croutons are one of the easiest things to cut from a shopping list, as your own can be made from any old hunk of bread, some seasonings and an oven.
Everyone knows that no Mexican meal is complete without a side of guac, which is why shops make a killing every year selling tiny plastic tubs of it. Take matters into your own hand for a fraction of the price with avocado, onions and lime juice. Not only will you save money, but the end result will taste way better too!
Anyone who’s ever thought about making their own fried chicken has probably tried to get their hands on buttermilk. However, even though this ingredient can command a premium, it couldn't be simpler to make it yourself. Simply mix whole milk with lemon juice and start coating.
When it comes to home baking, it seems a massive waste to go to all the trouble of carefully nurturing cakes and cookies, only to cover them in weird colourings and artificial oils. Some of the tastiest frostings you’ll find anywhere only have a handful of ingredients and taste way nicer than what you’ll find in the shop.
6. Fruit Salad
To pay a premium to have someone slice your fruit for you has got to be the ultimate in expensive laziness. Instead of wasting money, buy your favourite fruity ingredients separately, set aside some time to chop and package them yourself.
7. Pancake Mix
There might be dozens of different brands offering pancakey convenience, but nothing beats homemade. Rather than splash the cash, simply mix together eggs, milk and flour, along with a few added extras and enjoy the results.
8. Salad Dressing
Top of the range salad dressings can end up costing an arm and a leg, which is all the more reason to have a go at making them yourself. All you need is a mixture of vinegar, oil and spices to start mixing your own dressings, so there’s no need to waste money ever again!
For the sake of convenience, it can seem tempting to go for the easy option. But, after trying your hand at these simple substitutes for pricey supermarket staples, we’re certain that you’ll never look back.