There’s money hiding in your refrigerator!

I know it sounds funny, but it’s the truth. Every time you go to the grocery store, farmers market, Costco, etc. and buy food, you’re investing your money in the foods you buy. The next time you go to the store, look in your fridge and think about how much each item costs. It might look something like this:

Quart of Organic Milk: $4.50

Head of Romaine: $1

6 oz. Greek Yogurt: $1.25 each

Jar of Pasta Sauce: $3

Orange Juice: $4.50

That’s almost $15 for just a few items! All of these things expire at some point. Let’s say they do expire and you’ve only eaten half of each of them. Now you have to throw them away. You’re throwing away more than $7. Now, grab your wallet and pull out $7 and put it in the trash. If your stomach hurts just thinking about pulling money out of your wallet and throwing it away then you need this post! (I also need some tums. I can’t bear the thought of throwing money away!)

I got this little tip from a blog I follow called Savvy Housekeeping. Ms. Savvy has tons of tips from DIY, cooking, cleaning, decorating and much more. To save money on food items, she suggests making one of these:

It’s an “Eat Me First Box.” Simply place all of the foods in your refrigerator that are close to their expiration date in the box. When you’re digging around your refrigerator looking for something to eat, just grab something out of the box and know that you’re saving money since you wont be throwing these items away in the near future!

What do you think? Easy enough? Do you have something like this in your fridge? Has it worked for you? I also think an “Eat Me First Box” in the pantry would be nice. I would put opened bags of crackers, cereals, nuts, etc. in it. (I might label my box “Eat Me” just to see what my guests say when they open my fridge.)

Another great way to save money is to utilize your freezer! So many foods can be frozen and thawed and taste as good as new. Whenever I open a jar of pasta or pizza sauce I’m always left with half a jar. Instead of putting it back in the refrigerator (and waiting for it to grow a moldy, slimy layer on top when I finally pull it out of the fridge 3 months later since it got sucked into the black hole that is the back of my refigerator) I immediately place it in a plastic zip top bag, label it and freeze it! Your sauces will never go bad again! This is also great for nuts as they have lots of oil in them that will cause them to spoil. Just toss them in the freezer and they’ll be fresh when you need them! Did you buy fresh meat or fish that’s nearing it expiration date? Freeze it! I often buy meat and fish in bulk so I usually freeze about 3/4 of it when I get home from the store. Do you have any citrus that’s nearing the end of its shelf life? Juice them and freeze the juice! I’m always using fresh lemon juice in recipes and this way I always have it on hand.

What are your favorite ways to save money in the kitchen? I would love to hear your tips and tricks!

January 25, 2012. Tags: , , , , , , . FruGal Foodie. 2 comments.

Coffee Lovers Rejoice! Starbucks Deals Galore!

This post is especially for my wonderful friend Christine. Not only did she host a fantastic girl’s weekend at her apartment in San Francisco, but she is the reason I am writing this post. She encouraged me to keep up with this blog and continue to bring readers fantastic ways to save money. Also, she is from Seattle and LOVES coffee. Starbucks coffee in particular. Christine, drink to your heart’s desire 🙂

First of all, you must go to Starbucks.com to view their adorable Holiday themed welcome page! And have your sound turned up! So cute! Click on a few of the links in the top menu. Each one has a different holiday animation. Love it!

Okay, now it’s time to give and SAVE! Click on “The Perfect Gift” tab at the top of the page and when the menu pops up, click “Send an e-gift.” What you’ll need to do is add four $5 gift cards to your shopping cart and you will earn a FREE $5 gift card for yourself! Go ahead, send them to your mom, dad, sister, brother… Okay, who am I kidding? Send them to yourself 🙂 However, if you do want to send them to friends/family members, you can have the e-gift sent at a later day so it arrives in their inbox on Christmas or another special day! Cool, huh?

Once you have added all four e-gifts to your cart and inputted your billing information (you will not be charged yet) there will be a note at the top of the page that says “Congrats! You have qualified to receive your own $5 Starbucks eGift from Visa.” The e-gift will be sent to you email within 24 hours. Yay! Free coffee! Or in Christine’s case, Caramel Apple Cider!

(Bottom line: Pay $20, receive $25 worth of gift cards! That’s 25% more coffee! And let’s face it, you were probably going to spend $20 at Starbucks anyway.)

NOTE: Some people who have tried this deal have said it only works when using a VISA. However, others have used PayPal and have said it still worked. I used a VISA just to be safe.

Now, don’t think that’s all the coffee goodness I have for you today! Go to Target before Dec. 10 to score this great deal on bagged Starbucks coffee:

Starbucks Roast Ground Coffee, 12 oz $7.99, On Sale thru 12/10 
Buy 3 bags of Starbucks coffee, Receive $5.00 Target Gift Card automatically at checkout
Use $3.00 off 2 bags of Starbucks Coffee coupon from Smart Source from Dec. 4
And use $1.00 off 1 bag of Starbucks Coffee coupon from Smart Source from Dec. 4
Pay $19.97, Receive $5.00 Target Gift Card AND go here to redeem for a $5 starbucks gift card! Woot woot!

Final Price: $3.32 each when you buy 3 – That’s more than a 50% savings!

(Note: to receive the $5 starbucks gift card on this deal, you must purchase either three of either 10,11, 12 or 20 oz. ground or whole beans OR 6, 7 or 8 count Stabucks Via Ready Brew. All purchases must be made in the same transaction between the dates of 11/1 and 12/31)

And here’s one more way to get your Starbucks fix for cheap! Text MERRY to 697289 to get daily deals at Starbucks through December 12th! If you don’t want to receive text messages, you can go here to view each daily deal. Tomorrow’s deal is $9.95 for a Sampler Gift Pack of Starbucks Coffee (Regular Price: $14.95) And Tuesday’s deal is $7.95 for Holiday Tumblers (Regular Price: $10.95-$11.95).

That should keep your java buzz going at least until Christmas, right?

If you have any questions about how to get these deals, comment below! I am happy to help!

December 4, 2011. FruGal Fix, FruGal Foodie. 1 comment.

BOGO Starbucks Holiday Drinks!

My boyfriend and I usually stop by Starbucks on Sundays to pick up 4 Sunday papers (gotta get those coupons!) and he usually buys a plain black coffee to keep him going for the rest of his workday. Every once in a while we’ll get a latte to share. We never splurge for the fancy stuff, but I do love Starbucks’ holiday drinks. I just can’t justify a medium size coffee drink for the same amount as my 4 Sunday papers! (The drink costs about $3.45 and 4 papers cost $4.00.)

However, Starbucks has solved our dilemma (at least for this weekend)!

Starting today at 2 pm, when you buy a holiday drink you can get another of equal or lesser value for FREE. What are “holiday drinks” you ask? They include:  “Peppermint Mocha, new Skinny Peppermint Mocha, Caramel BrulĂ©e Latte, Gingerbread Latte and Eggnog Latte.”

I think I’ll grab a Skinny Peppermint Mocha. What about you? Comment below!

November 17, 2011. FruGal Foodie, FruGal Freebies. Leave a comment.

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