Have you ever thought about creating a stockpile of food and supplies? Maybe you’ve seen videos online of people sharing their pantry that resembles a small grocery store. You don’t have to go to the same lengths but developing your own small stockpile could still be helpful.
If you run out of an item and are unable to get to the store, having regular pantry staples or frozen meat on hand could make a huge difference.
The holiday season is one of the best times to save money on food. People are already buying so much food around the holidays so the sales are great. That said, here are some of the best foods to stock up on during holiday sales.
Turkey and Ham
Of course, turkey will be on sale around and after Thanksgiving. You can buy an extra turkey to freeze for future use. Or, you can buy other cuts of turkey and use them to substitute for chicken when you’re cooking meals. Ground turkey is one of my personal go-tos because it’s so easy to make meals like turkey meatballs or turkey tacos.
Ham is another great pick and there are so many different ways to prepare it. You can slice it thin to make sandwiches for your family’s lunch.
Chicken, Beef and Vegetable Stocks
While you can definitely make your own broth for soups, sometimes using a store-bought container is just more convenient. I enjoy cooking but sometimes the simpler the meals are the better so I can save time.
These are good items to stock up on when they’re on sale because they will last in your pantry for several months. You can stretch your grocery budget by making tons of soups, stews, and casseroles.
You may or may not be tired of pumpkin everything yet. However, canned pumpkin is one of the best foods to stock up on while it’s on sale because it’s also seasonal. Not only can you prepare desserts like pumpkin pie, but you can make things like pumpkin pancakes and French toast, pumpkin chili and the list goes on.
Honey and Maple Syrup
Raw honey and organic maple syrup are healthier options but they are usually sold at a higher price. Look out for discounts on these items during the holiday so you can stock up for future meals and snacks. I love making homemade granola bars with maple syrup and one of my favorite recipes with honey is this honey sriracha salmon.
Green beans are not too pricey to begin with, but they are usually on sale during the holidays. This is one of the best foods to stock up on during the holidays because you can add green beans to any dish or they could be the main dish like with a green bean casserole.
I like to boil green beans with some cut up onions then season them with salt and butter for a side dish. You can prep your green beans by dividing them up into separate Ziploc bags and adding chopped onions. Then put a date on each bad and throw them in the freezer.
Whether you bake a lot or not, it’s always helpful to have some common pantry staples like flour, sugar, condensed milk, and chocolate chips on hand. You never know when a recipe might call for.
One thing that’s been popular in my household lately is Mongolian beef and rice. The typical Mongolian beef recipes calls for soy sauce, corn starch, and brown sugar so it’s nice to have all these things stocked up in the pantry.
Aside from food, see if there’s any spice blends or dried herbs you can get on sale during the holiday season. It’s always good to have spices and seasoning blends in your pantry to add life to a meal. Dried herbs can also last for a long time.
You can even stock up on some seasoning blends for your summer grilling as well.
What To Keep in Mind
When considering the best foods to stock up on during holiday sales, it’s important to plan ahead.
Brainstorm Meal Ideas
Try not to just go to the store looking for something to buy that may or may not be something your family will eat.
Narrow down some of the things you really need and can see yourself using within the next year. I use everything from cookbooks to online recipes and Pinterest boards to prepare some of my family’s favorite meals. A lot of the foods you’ll find on sale this time of year are pretty versatile so that will likely stretch your budget even more.
Take Your Time When Reviewing Sale Details
Don’t rush into a purchase just because you have a coupon or see that something is in the clearance aisle. Take a look to compare pricing and see how good the sale actually is. Is the store trying to make you buy 10 of an item to get a discount? Do you really need 10?
Also, be sure to check the shelf life on all the foods you buy beforehand. It could be that the item is on sale because it’s almost expired. In that case, you probably can’t store it for long and should have plans to prepare it in a meal.
Keep your finances and your food storage as organized as possible. Purposely save a little money to make use of sales after the holiday has passed. Realize you don’t need to spend a ton to start your pantry. Even if you have $20 or $50, it could likely make a difference. My pantry is small but growing slowly over time. I divide it up into the following categories:
- Frozen meat and vegetables
- Canned goods
- Short-term dry goods
- Long-term dry goods
So far, it’s been pretty simple to keep up with. I haven’t even started canning or doing more higher-level food preservation tasks.
Find a system that works for you and mark each food item with the date you purchased it if you plan to store it for a while.
Have you ever thought about creating a food storage pantry in your home or simply stocking up on your favorite things during the sale season?