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In a hurry for a quick food fix? Put down your wallet and hit your pantry instead. Whip up these cost saving recipes and say goodbye to five packaged foods for good — your health will thank you
There’s no question that packaged foods are quick and convenient, but they aren’t always the best option for your health or your wallet. With a little extra time and planning, you can learn to master simple staples that will liberate you from the packaged food aisles.
Cooking these five items at home will save you cash, improve your health (because you can control what you add to them) and protect the environment, since you won’t be tossing out empty packaging.
The beauty of homemade hummus is you can play around with flavours and spices to create myriad variations. Start off with a basic recipe by blending 2 cups of cooked chickpeas, a couple of tablespoons of tahini, a couple of tablespoons of lemon juice, a big glug of olive oil, a clove of garlic and a few pinches of salt. Taste as you go, and adjust the seasonings to your personal preferences.
Then it’s time to have a little fun with it! You can add:
Basically, the sky is the limit when it comes to hummus. And once you start creating your own, you’ll be hard-pressed to buy it from the store ever again.
You don’t need to be a whiz in the kitchen to create delicious, mouth-watering granola. All it takes is about half an hour and the ability to stir.
Start off with:
Kale chips are all the rage these days, and with good reason. Kale is packed with stress-fighting B vitamins, immune-boosting vitamin C, vision-enhancing vitamin A and loads of fibre. It contains nutrients that fight inflammation and prevent cancer, and because kale chips are often baked or dehydrated, they’re a better alternative to fried potato chips.
What’s not so great is their price tag, which can be anywhere from $5 to $10, and most store-bought brands only yield a few handfuls per package. You can make kale chips at home for a fraction of the price.
Here’s a recipe for all-dressed kale chips.
Dressings are the ultimate free-form condiment, and pretty much anything goes. A standard vinaigrette has only a few components: oil, vinegar and herbs. That’s it! A common ratio of oil to vinegar is 3:1, but you can alter that depending on your tastes.
Here are a few other ways to jazz up your dressing:
Canned beans are quick and convenient. Unfortunately, they can also be loaded with added sodium and packaged in cans that are lined with bisphenol A, a chemical that disrupts our endocrine system.
Cooking beans at home is simple and cheap.
Here’s what you do:
You can make large batches and freeze them, too. And if you love beans, but aren’t a fan of the awkward gas that comes along with them, try adding a bit of baking soda while they’re soaking, or place a piece of seaweed like kombu or kelp in the pot while they’re cooking.
Make 5 Foods You’ll Never Need to Buy Again