I have been buying in bulk for my frugal pantry many years’. Our family eats out of our pantry. My monthly trip to the store is to replenish the pantry, refrigerator, and fill my freezer with vegetables. About two year’s ago my focus changed from a monthly trip for my frugal pantry to a trip for long term storage.
The trouble lately that I have found with inflation is…it is hard to be frugal with food prices going up. Switching the frugal mindset to saving on what we have, instead of stocking up with food is the new direction. Frugal by most meanings is the equivalent to saving. My pantry rotates and is used in emergency so I don’t have to run to the store. In my case, we are stretching our food further on what we can afford, to avoid multiple monthly trips to the store.
Here are some ways that I am buying bulk grains for the best price I can find, and storing them long term for my frugal long term pantry. Purchasing in bulk helps me to stretch daily baking further.
Research The Bulk Grains to Buy for Everyday Use
The best way to save and be frugal is to not waste. Purchasing and spending in panic mode for bulk grains to cook with is not helpful if you think they sound good. For instance, I like the idea of grinding my own wheat for flour. One of my purchases could be wheat berries that I could grind. But, never in my life have I ground wheat berries. Now is not the time to start grinding my own flour with high prices. Although in theory it sounds great and a healthy way to cook for my family, it would be a waste. I homeschool my kids, barely find to cook homemade meals and grinding wheat berries falls far down my list.
However, on the other side of the bulk grains list of purchases I am making is grits. Now, I have only heated up packages of grits, but since I am familiar with them they are more likely to be cooked. One of my bulk grain purchasing items will be grits. I like grits and will cook them.
Next, before purchasing bulk grains is having a rotation set up in place. For a frugal pantry to work the grains need to be used and new bought. I know that our family goes through flour every 2 months. Buying flour before 2 months is a waste because I will not use it. I do have long term food storage buckets set up for my grains. So, my rotation is to fill my kitchen container from the long term storage. Using this system helps me to know how long my grains last.
Utilizing an inventory sheet and tracking how often buckets need refill help me to not waste my frugal pantry food.
Buy What Bulk Grains You Will Eat
Everyone in the world almost is cooking more at home. Prices everywhere have risen. Trying new food is good. Implementing and experimenting with grains to save money is not a bad idea. As I stroll through bulk grain websites searching for purchases I am intrigued to buy new stuff. But, not without a plan. First, I have meals ready on paper that will fit that purchase. An unprecedented purchase is wasteful. Frugal pantry moms don’t waste, they save and stretch. Right now, I am buying on my next order some Polenta to try. Some grains may need to be substituted for others as we see what will cost more.
Back in the Depression Era, they literally used what they had on hand. So if I have something or am out of something I will experiment with my recipes a bit.
Storing the food is important. Deciding if it is for a long term storage or working pantry makes a difference. When purchasing bulk grains online for long term, food storage buckets with oxygen or mylar bags is necessary.
Part of a frugal pantry plan to eat what we buy is to have on hand the necessary means to store them. Finding the right place to purchase food storage buckets, mylar bags and oxygen pockets is crucial. Also, knowing where to store them in the house is important.
Have a Company List for Bulk Grains
Before I start purchasing food from anywhere, I like to have a list. As I do this it helps me to collect information that I will need to make an informed decision. First, verifying prices and amounts is important. Shipments that arrive smaller than expected are disappointing. Orders received that are more costly than the purchaser imagined is another big disappointment.
Second, ratings on companies help consumers make wise decisions based on others’ experience. My husband is big on ratings. Not really my forte due to a lack of time and patience. He has full reign in the ratings department in our home. When we do make a purchase, it is because I know he has checked all of the ratings and made the decision of what is best.
Third, email the customer service department. Shopping online for bulk grains is expensive for shipping. Building a rapport with the company for future purchases is good. many year’s ago people bought from people they knew. Frugal pantry owners and builders want to make sure they have a good, friendly, relationship with a bulk grain supplier, online store, or salesperson.
Informed Purchases are Good Purchases
Making an informed purchase on a monthly, quarterly, or bi-annual basis is primary. Wasting money is not idea for frugal pantry moms, and we want our dollars to stretch as far as we can. Try one of these steps today as you build a pantry that works for your cooking needs.
For more posts on frugal living, homeschooling and suburban homesteading sign up for my newsletter!