This is the final article of a 5 Kitchen Tools series designed to empower you to save thousands of dollars on your food budget.
Over the past 4 weeks we’ve shared how we save with the humble SpoonUla, a set of glass bowls for lunches, a SloCooker and a Meat Slicer. We’ve calculated the annual savings from using these four kitchen tools to be about $4500.
But, hold on to your wallet, we’ve held back the biggest saver for last.
This tool will assuredly pay for itself quickly and truly help you build a stockpile of cold, hard cash.
Chill It Out with a Freezer
A freezer is one of the best money-saving tools a family can invest in.
Because a freezer allows you to stock up on sale items and enjoy eating steeply discounted food for weeks or months to come. We regularly freeze bread, milk and shredded cheese. But we also stock up on things like turkeys at Thanksgiving, hams at Christmas, corned beef after St. Patrick’s Day and pork ribs over the summer holidays.
Plus, because we have the storage space, we’re constantly watching for marked-down meat prices when grocers have overstocks – recently we bought 60 pounds of chicken legs for $.19 per pound.
What Kind of Freezer Should you Buy?
We like non frost-free freezers because they don’t dry out food as quickly. Frost-free freezers have a fan that constantly runs to reduce the build-up of frost, but that same fan removes moisture from food that isn’t vacuum sealed. Years ago we started with a 9 cubic foot chest-freezer, then graduated to a 17 cubic-foot upright. Now we have a 27 cubic-foot chest freezer.
Should you buy a new or used freezer?
Freezers can easily be found gently used on CraigsList. Our book, “Cut Your Grocery Bill in Half with Americas’ Cheapest Family,” describes our secrets to researching and buying quality used appliances, very inexpensively. In the book, wee also provide a list of the best items to freeze and how to organize a chest freezer for maximum efficiency.
You can also pick up inexpensive freezers from Amazon – if you’re a Prime member, shipping is free – and that makes it really affordable. Here’s a list of Amazon’s best selling chest freezers. They aren’t that expensive, ranging in price from $199 to about $320.
Savings: We’ve calculated that our chest freezer saves us at least $2000 a year—not bad for a $400 investment. And this cool little workhorse will keep saving you money year after year, after year.
Adding Up the Savings in the Kitchen
Cost for Five tools:
- Spoonula . . . . . . .$ 10
- Pyrex Bowls . . . . $ 10
- Slow Cooker . . . . $ 20
- Meat Slicer . . . . . $ 30
- Freezer . . . . . . . . $400 (possibly less)
Total Cost $470
- Spoonula . . . . $ 40
- Pyrex Bowls . . $1000
- Slow Cooker . . $3000
- Meat Slicer: . . $ 550
- Freezer . . . . . $2000
Total Saved $6590
Did you ever think that Scooping, Packing, Slow Cooking, Slicing and Chilling could be so rewarding. What would you do with that extra $549 each month (that’s $6590 divided by 12)? And what are you going to do with all of the extra time you’ll save not having to run to the store or restaurant as often? As a home school family, saving time is almost as precious as saving money and if this article can free up even half of what is predicted – we know your family will benefit from it. Big savings can start with just a few small tools—you can bank on it!
If you missed any of the posts in this series, you can catch up here.
- Week 1: The Humble SpoonULa
- Week 2: $1000 Lunch Hack
- Week 3: $3400 Crock Pot
- Week 4: $500 Sliced Savings
This TV spot describes the five tools in a little more detail.