How to save money in the kitchen

With a little planning and creativity, you can save plenty of cash in your kitchen — without giving up on good food. Here are a few ways to save some money in the kitchen!

How to save money in the kitchen

How to save on food costs

  • Try not to let foods spoil. You can make purees, jam, smoothies or compotes from fruit. Freeze leftover gravy and sauces (in an ice cube tray, for example).
  • Shop thoughtfully: flank steak, stewing beef and other less expensive cuts of meat are 10 to 30 per cent cheaper. Though they do need longer marinating and/or cooking times to render them tender. Plan your meals in advance and take advantage of slow cookers to get more bang for your buck.
  • Make use of an old cooking trick: when boiling down jam, add the juice of one to two lemons to save on sugar and prevent the fruit from discolouring.
  • Even leftover drinks can be re-purposed. Use wine that has gone sour as vinegar, and flat mineral water for making tea.
  • Precook: cooking twice the amount of potatoes or noodles saves time. A day or two later you can warm them up and serve, or use in a soup or casserole.

How to save on energy (and energy costs!)

  • Household appliances typically use up about 30 per cent of your home's energy. It's worthwhile in the long run to replace energy-wasting appliances such as old refrigerators, freezers and electric stoves.
  • A gas stove is more economical than an electric one.
  • Look for good-quality, thermo-conductive pots and pans.
  • Always put pots on the heating element that is closest in size, and don't forget to use a tight-fitting lid while cooking.
  • Use residual heat by turning off an electrical element about five minutes before whatever you're cooking is done.
  • A pressure cooker can save up to 30 per cent of the energy used for stove top cooking with cooking times over 20 minutes.

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