Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Baking vs. Buying

Last night I met my mother, brother, sister-in-law, and adorable niece for family fajitas at Lone Star! Nothing like delicious foods in fun company (in a strange, but yummy Texas themed Canadian restaurant chain)! After dinner my mom drove me home and we had an interesting discussion about saving money through making more of your own foods versus buying.

It is no secret that I enjoy to bake, but I hadn't considered the money I may be saving by making some of my own foods. A few months ago I decided to make my own pizza crust using this recipe. It seriously took no time at all, and was actually quite fun. My friend and I got to pick our own topics (and decorate our own halves!). It did end up being about 3 inches thick (oops) but it was possibly one of the most delicious pizzas I have ever eaten. I wish I knew what a bag of flour cost me, but the toppings could not have cost me more than $10 (including cheese which I didn't use all of).

On the weekend I was also inspired to make bread using this recipe!

Ok, that one wasn't my bread. This one was mine!

I was running low on flour, so I halved the recipe and just made me a teeny loaf! It may be small, but it was mighty delicious! And the only ingredients in it were flour, yeast, and salt! You know...the same flour, yeast, and salt I used to make that pizza bread. So I spent zero money to make this delicious loaf of bread (plus a gazillion cupcakes and cookies- that flour stretched for awhile).

If I had a yard, I might even consider growing my own vegetables and seeing how far I can make my food dollar stretch! But I am pretty lazy with gardening, so we shall see on that one.

My point is that a few base ingredients can make lots of staples! And if you bake it yourself, you know exactly what is going in them AND you can customize to your tastes! Plus baking is a fun activity to do with friends and family, or to kill a few hours on a cold weeknight in the winter. It shoul also be noted that a lot of these recipes are faster and easier than you think. The bread had to sit for 12-18 hours, and you had to heat the pot and so forth...but the actual time I spent standing in the kitchen and making it was probably 30 minutes max.

Do you like to make your own foods? Send me your favourite staples!


  1. I stopped buying granola bars, they were full of sugar and always tasted dry and horrible and never kept me full. So I started making my own granola snack type bars/cookies. I know all of the ingredients what's in there and they are always fresh. Usually I have enough ingredients at home to make some. Here is one that i just made yesterday.


    1. peanut butter, fudge, banana cookies? Im so there!

      My friend gave me a jar of yummers homemade granola mix for christmas. Ive definitely been missing out!

  2. I do most of my own baking and cooking. It's how I grew up so it's mostly second nature to me. Although with working full time I have been cutting a few corners. But I always have all the baking necessities on hand in my pantry so when the urge hits, I can bake!

  3. I make my own foods! However, I'm sorry to disappoint you, but, in reality, baking your own bread doesn't actually save you that much money. When I make bread, I use 9 cups of flour (usually a mix, actually, of all-purpose, whole wheat, and oatmeal) which is about a third to a half of a normal sized bag. I buy the ginormous size, though, which does make it cheaper! This gets me three loaves - which at $2 each is saving me about $6 at the grocery store - probably the cost of the bag of flour. So, say I get another 5 loaves or so out of that bag, I'm saving $10 at the grocery store (assuming the first 3 loaves covered the cost of the flour). There's the price of yeast, of course, maybe another $5 for my little jar - I'm down to $5. The rest of the ingredients are hardly worth considering, so I'm up $5 on my bread. Yay! But... and this is where the kicker comes... what's your time worth? It takes a half hour shopping trip to pick up a loaf of bread. It takes at least 8 hours to make a loaf of bread, which - true - most of the time is spent in rising - but it still requires your presence.

    So, I would argue - for the sake of an arguement - that it doesn't actually save you MONEY to make your own bread (the same goes for things like making your own clothes, just multiplied like, 20 times). However, the points you make in your last paragraph are HUGE. Homemade breads tastes a heck of a lot better. Kneading dough can be ridiculously therapeutic. And the health benefits - provided you're not making and eating too much straight white bread - are amazing. You can't get much better than an awesome loaf of whole wheat bread. (It's easy to make it whole wheat - just substitute half the white for whole wheat. Or, try oatmeal! Or a mix! Maybe some Red River cereal! Delicious.)

    Sorry - I think I just wrote an essay in your comments! Summary! Yay for homemade bread! :D

    1. maybe it is worth pointing out that I dont eat much bread so my flour will stretch farther. And yes, yeast is pricy...but at 1 tsp a recipe I think itll last?

      but thanks for points on prices for any readers!

  4. Peppers and tomatoes grow well on balconies in Toronto....

    ... when it is not winter. ;)

    1. My only fear is that I have the capability to kill a cactus. wouldnt be fair to the plants!!


Pin It button on image hover