Cheap Snack Ideas

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    • #235186
      Melissa Burnell

      I’m trying very hard to cut my grocery bill, but I’m having problems
      cutting back on the snacks. Do any of you have some good ideas for
      frugal snacks, to buy or make?

      We have 3 in our family at this time, me, hubby, and one of our grown
      sons. Hubby and son feel as if there is nothing to eat in the house if
      we don’t have chips, snack crackers, peanuts etc. Our son does buy many
      of his own snacks but he also gets into ours too.

      Nancy Ann

    • #407794

      @Savin’ Moola 322 wrote:

      Super Bowl Snacks — Potato Skins!

      (From Timberlake’s in Washington D.C.) Ingredients:
      6 medium baking potatoes ( 3 pounds)
      vegetable oil
      1/2 tsp. each salt and pepper
      1/3 cup all-purpose flour toppings:
      1 cup each shredded Monterey Jack and shredded sharp cheddar cheese, mixed
      3 jalapeno chiles, sliced into rings
      1/2 cup sour cram
      6 slices cooked bacon, crumbled
      1/4 cup chopped scallions Steps: Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Scrub and dry

      Pierce each once with fork. Very lightly rub skins with paper towel
      dipped in oil, to lightly coat. Bake potatoes on oven rack for about 45 to 60
      minutes (or you can bake on grill).

      Cook until fork-tender. Let cool.
      Meanwhile, fill deep fryer or large saucepan (with deep-fat thermometer
      attached) with 1-inch oil. Heat to 375 degrees.

      Line baking sheet with paper
      towels. Quarter potatoes lengthwise. Cut our potato pulp from each skin,
      leaving 1/4-inch thick shell.

      Season with salt and pepper. Lightly coat
      potato skins with flour. Fry skins in batches for about 1-2 minutes, until
      crisp and golden.

      Drain, cut side down, on paper towels. Pre-heat broiler.
      Arrange potato skins, cut side up on broiler rack pan. Sprinkle with cheese
      mixture; top with jalepeno slices.

      Broil 1 minutes to melt cheese. Transfer
      to serving platter. Top with dollops of sour cream.

      Sprinkle with bacon and
      scallions. Serve while warm.

      Uuummmm! These sound yummy! And the super bowl will be here soon!

    • #407809

      I like to make my kids big batches of jello w/fruit or puddings and we all love these.
      There are some great recipes here in the MYO section.
      We also love pretzels and popcorn.

    • #407820

      DH really likes Potato Skins, it real treat when I make these.

    • #407880

      We keep cubed cheese in plastic bags to eat along with our MYO crackers we keep on hand. I fill celery and keep a tray of that and baby carrots in the fridge. We keep rolled cookie dough in the fridge so anyone who wants can cut off cookie dough slices and bake a tray up.

      We keep our freezer stocked with homemade cinnamon and orange rolls that we freeze and bag and you just have to take what you want and bake it up. We pop corn and wheat to snack on. Once or twice a week we’ll get together as a family and make a treat like homemade potato chips or fries, taffy or fudge or stovetop cookies, mini pizzas or biscuits or rolls.

      Late Spring through Fall we eat Breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks straight out of the garden.

    • #407910

      My family likes sweet snacks, so I will often make Oatmeal Raisin Cookies because I figure that there is at least a little “healthy” eating in them! They also enjoy when I make homemade soft pretzels. Popcorn is also a favorite here. Sometimes I take the cheese packet out of a box of mac ‘n cheese and sprinkle it over the popcorn. You can also buy the seasoning toppers in a jar. They seem a little pricey ($2-3) until you figure that you get several batches of popcorn seasoned for that price.

      I am enjoying all the ideas from everyone. Thanks for the post, Savin’ Moola!

    • #408201

      If you don’t have an air popper (tall skinny looking thing) check the local Sal Army/Goodwill

      WHY? Air popped popcorn is CHEAP – its the cheapest popcorn on the grocery shelf (see below for trick) .. It is great if you are on diet, cause you can eat a LOT .. FIBER .. Makes a lot, great if you have kids

      BORING? nah – you can add all kinds of stuff (translation your spices you already have) to flavor it

      I have a recipe for ‘bloody finger’ popcorn – we used to make this around Halloween. It used cinnamon candies and I didn’t cook til clear – so it looked like ‘blood’ (*must say in vampire-ish voice with evil laugh)

      MESSY?: NO!! Since its air popped no stinky pot to clean .. in fact you can wipe it out with dry rag and its fine ..
      You will have errant run away kernels if you don’t have a big enough bowl, I use a BIG brown paper bag, or the tupperware bowl that you’d use for potato salad. Those that fall on floor the dogs will love to eat. In fact you can use as a training tool LOL. Of course this does mean the boys will also try it

      HISTORY LESSON: Did you know colonists used to eat popcorn as a cereal? UGH just thinking of popcorn with milk is gross, but of course my kids had to try it. Although they ‘said’ it was fine, they never did it again. I think it was more of a “let’s gross mom out vs really tasting good’

      TIP: Take a 2 C measuring cup and put water in the nuker and heat it up. Toss in the amount of popcorn the popper needs (the removable top is usually the measurement) into the hot water (wait till it cools). I usually wipe down counters, do dishes, start wash etc till cool

      SCIENCE WHY? popcorn pops because of the moisture content in the kernels, less moisture = less poppage (if such a word).. Soaking the kernels seem to increase the amount of moisture in and less dead kernels

      Of course this means you can make up 2 batches from same bag of popcorn – one soaked and one not. Have the kids do scientific research


    • #408615

      I too, use the homemade pita chips. Sometimes I season with chili powder prior to baking and serve with salsa or humus (cheap and easy to make). Another favorite is apple wedges with peanut butter or cheese. My kids also like smoothies too. I hope that this helps.

    • #409819

      I like to make monkey munch or chow mix as some call it-
      9 cups of cereal squares-any flavor (any store brand that looks like Chex cereal)
      1 cup of semi-sweet choc. chips
      1/2 cup of creamy peanut butter
      1/4 cup of butter (I have never tried it with margarine)
      2 tsps of vanilla (you can use only one teaspoon-I like two)
      1-2 cups of powedered sugar (I usually don’t measure this and put in what I think is enough)

      Measure cereal in a big bowl and set aside. Put choc. chips. P.B. and butter in a small pot and melt over med heat on stove- keep stirring so it won’t burn. (you can also melt all of this in the microwave though I have never tried it). Once mixture is melted and smooth, take off the heat and stir in vanilla. Pour mixture over cereal and mix until well coated. This is where it gets a little messy- pour mixture in a big ziplock bag (I have also tried a cleaned out grocery bag too which works great)- add powdered sugar, close up bag and shake until well coated. Spread mixture on wax paper to cool and then store in an air tight container.

      This recipe is so yummy and never lasts long in my house.

    • #426949

      Great ideas.. love the options in the fridge so they can make their own..

    • #427013

      Love the homemade chip idea. Especially good to use potatoes before they go bad. Walmart’s $1 cookie/crackers are great, maybe not healthy, but cheap. We like peanuts to. They take awhile to unshell so you don’t eat as many.

    • #428531

      Thanks for all the great ideas – we do a lot of baking, muffins, cookies, cinnamon rolls etc – but salty snacks we don’t make our own of too often . . . great ideas!

    • #429557

      All of these are really great ideas! Does anyone know how to make your own corn chips, like the fritos kind?? beaverhug smilie

    • #429556

      Yes like Fritos! Love making my own chip that aren’t filled with all kinds of junk!

    • #429591

      1/2 cup organic stone-ground yellow cornmeal
      1/2 teaspoon salt
      3/4 cup boiling water
      1 teaspoon canola oil
      1/4 tsp black pepper

      1. Preheat oven to 375F degrees.

      2. Combine cornmeal and salt in a mixing bowl. Pour in boiling water and stir, add olive oil, and stir until well blended.

      3. Drop mixture by small teaspoonfuls onto a (very) well-greased baking sheet and smooth out as thinly as possible. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until golden brown.

      Makes approximately 2 dozen chips.

    • #429688

      What a great idea…thanks for the recipe! I’m going to have to try this out 🙂

    • #430417

      Pizza Party Mix

      4 tsp parsley flakes 1 tsp garlic powder
      ½ tsp onion powder ½ tsp paprika
      2 Tbl olive oil 4 c Corn Chex
      4 c Rice Chex 1½ tsp Italian seasoning
      1½ tsp seasoned salt 2 Tbl tomato paste
      3 Tbl blue cheese dressing 1/8 tsp liquid smoke
      2 Tbl Parmesan cheese 1 Tbl powdered buttermilk

      Heat oven to 250. In small bowl, combine parsley, Italian seasoning, garlic powder, onion powder & paprika. In large roasting pan combine seasoned slat, salad dressing, tomato paste, oil & liquid smoke. Gradually add cereals, stirring until all pieces are evenly coated. Add seasoning mixture, stirring thoroughly. Bake 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes. Sprinkle cheese blend and then buttermilk over cereal; mix well. Spread on paper towels to cool. (or put in clean, brown paper bag) Store in airtight container.

      Microwave directions:
      Same as oven, but microwave on High for 6 minutes, thoroughly stirring every 2 minutes.

      Teriyaki Mix

      3 Tbl margarine 3 Tbl soy sauce
      3 Tbl brown sugar 1 tsp ginger
      ½ tsp garlic powder 7 c Chex or Crispix
      1 c raisins ½ c slivered almonds
      ¼ c sesame seeds

      Melt margarine. Combine with soy sauce, brown sugar, ginger & garlic. Pour over cereal, raisins, nuts & seeds. Bake at 250 for 45 minutes. Stir every 15 minutes. Spread on paper towels to cool – or in clean brown paper bag. Store in airtight container. In microwave, cook on High for 6 minutes, stirring every 2 minutes.

    • #430496

      I ma loving all the ideas! I’m going to try the chips. One thing I make in bulk is the soft pretzels. It seems to keep my crew happy.

    • #430815

      ok i know these are not healthy but once in a while will not hurt (or that’s what i tell myself LOL) I did the premix for funnel cakes and it dont really take too much time to get these done. the kids love them on movie nite.

    • #430911

      @Savin’ Moola 270 wrote:

      If you family wants chips and such. Did you know that one large baking
      potato sliced and fried or baked will equal one bag of chips? White corn
      tortillas sprayed with Pam or other non stick spray and baked will make a
      huge amount of chips and for very little money.
      I make potato chips for my family on occasion and they love them. My
      husbands favorite snack is popcorn, microwave or the old fashioned kind you
      make in a pan.
      Good luck with you snacks. Crackers are easy to make also….

      Sue Caswell

      I would like to make my own chips. That sounds like a great idea. I had forgotten about the tortilla chips though.

    • #430918

      Yes making your own chips can sound hard but it’s really not! I grew up in a home where we regularly made potato chips so I knew those were very easy to make but later when I got sick and discovered I couldn’t handle all the garbage they add to our food and had to make everything from scratch at home I finally tried tortilla chips and frito style chips and discovered they weren’t really hard either. I make my own crackers and even make up our own bran flakes.

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