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Pantry Party

Zero Waste Kitchen

Last Updated on January 23, 2024

 Finishing up the pantry, and there are finally enough jars to keep all the staples.  Finishing up the pantry, and there are finally enough jars to keep all the staples.

Budgeting, although not a sexy topic, entirely necessary. If you’re thinking about starting something new, it’s always nice to know what it costs. I’m almost always tempted to bust the budget grocery shopping. I love food! It is the ultimate sharing experience, it nourishes you, it brings joy, and it’s fun to make new things. My goal is to get all of this real food on a budget of $50 a week.

While I have always enjoyed grocery shopping, I find visiting the bulk section to be an even more pleasant experience. It’s so satisfying to rip open bins, carefully scoop delicious ingredients, and watch my jars fill to the brim. I also love how simple it’s become to put the groceries away. Everything is already in its container, and I can put it right back where it belongs.

I also want to break a misconception that cooking from scratch is time consuming. It can be a laborious process, but it can also be quick, easy and fun. Throughout this blogging experience, I want to share recipes with you that use bulk ingredients and can be done quickly.

This week I took a trip to Berkeley Bowl. They have rows and rows of organic goodies in bulk! I filled up on 2 cups of cocoa powder, 5 cups of brown sugar, 2 cups of millet, 2 cups of pasta, 8 cups of soy beans, 3 cups of peanut butter filled pretzels, 3 large heirloom tomatoes, and 2 avocados for $24.00. I’m looking forward to making brownies, chocolate chip cookies, vegan cheese, macaroni & cheese, avocado toast, and marinara with my haul. Farmers market veggies and bread from the bakery totaled in at $12.00. I had enough meat left over from last week to avoid going to the butcher. We’ve significantly cut back on meat consumption because of the drought, sustainability, and to eat more veggies!

 That's the last plastic you'll see in this kitchen. I'm finishing off the stock pile, and loading the jars with chocolate chips, granola, crackers, and some pasta.  That’s the last plastic you’ll see in this kitchen. I’m finishing off the stock pile, and loading the jars with chocolate chips, granola, crackers, and some pasta.

For groceries this week I’ve spent $36.00. I know it will start to go up, as we finish what’s in the stock pile. Cleaning out the stock pile is very liberating. I’ve poured most of what we have left into jars, and finished up the pantry this week. I’ve labeled stable items such as corn starch, baking soda, flour, sugar… they all kinda look the same. In fact I actually mislabeled the soy beans and garbanzo beans. I don’t think soy bean hummus would be very tasty, but I could be wrong.

I can’t wait to start cooking! What are you making for dinner tonight?

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  1. I wish you would add more content about the details of how you learned how to buy in bulk especially the details of your store trips. I’m very interested in doing this, but I don’t know who at the store to talk to or how you weigh stuff out given you bring your own jars (I would assume). Just in general, I feel that your blog posts lack the process that you have gone through to get where you are and your every day life.

    1. There’s a blog post called, "The Ultimate Guide to Zero Waste Grocery Shopping," That takes you through step by step on how to shop the bulk bins. I also have several posts about going to the farmers markets that detail how to buy produce. I have started weekly meal plans that tell you what I’m buying, cooking, and how much it cost. I also have a challenge and a top 10 swaps to get started.

  2. I am loving your blog. I live in the Philippines and I am in the process of practicing zero waste – I started small by bringing my own water bottle, making my own lunch (packing with my lunchbox and bringing my own utensils), switching my bathroom and kitchen products to companies that care about their environment. I am now planning to sew my own cloth bags but thinking of using my old shirts and pillowcases. I am excited to be on this journey and I love what you do. 🙂