Kitchen DIY

You know that elbow grease and saving money go hand in hand, right? And you know how you are always trying to shave down that grocery budget? If you extend a little DIY power in the kitchen, you can cut back on spending. Yes, it’s a little more time consuming, but these are some activities that you can get the whole family involved in- so it’s like an activity too.

Peanut Butter

Although you can’t bring this to school (pretty much every school is nut-free), peanut butter is a great protein-packed option for snacks at home and to boost the protein factor in meatless meal (i.e. add to a stir fry sauce).

To make your own (literally. It is this easy). Put a bag of peanuts in your food processor. Put the lid on and blend until creamy (it will take a little while to blend to the right consistency).

Salad Dressing

Again, this is not the domain of the super chef. Blend equal parts oil and vinegar (I like balsamic vinegar for the extra flavour). Add a selection of herbs (a couple of tsp). I like fresh thyme, but you can use dried herb blends too, like Italian seasoning. Shake and serve.


Wait! We’re not done with your salad. Don’t throw those ends of the bread loaf out. Throw them in the freezer, and when you’ve got about a dozen, chop into cubes. Lay on a parchment-lined baking sheet and drizzle with a little oil and a sprinkle of parmesan cheese.

Bake for about five to seven minutes, or until golden brown.


As the temperature drops, your family will appreciate having a warm breakfast before they head out for the day. This DIY version is significantly cheaper than the individual packets, with more healthy ingredients. To save time in the morning, pre-measure and put in individual baggies or containers.

For a single serving, combine ½ cup of quick rolled oats, two tbsp. dried milk, 1 tsp each brown sugar and cinnamon. Add chopped fruits, raisins, nuts (whatever you like) and portion in individual containers.

To cook, add to bowl with 3/4c milk and heat in microwave for about a minute.