I’m always trying to find ways to make household items myself. Not only is this a great way to save money but also helps you live a healthier life style. No more chemicals in your cupboards! Cooking from scratch also helps us to save money. You know exactly what is in each food item and as a result you will be consuming less preservatives. These are the top 15 items I no longer buy. I have divided the list into food items and household and personal products.
Recently a friend of mine introduced me to the grain farro. Have you heard of it? Farro is a type of hulled wheat that is typically used in salads, soups and side dishes. It has sort of a nutty flavor. Farro looks very much like a wheat berry. Doing a search on the Internet will give you all sorts of recipes from salads to soups to everything in between. I found a warm farro cereal recipe that I just had to try. Our mornings are still rather chilly and I enjoy a nice bowl of warm cereal to start my day.
I have personally been enjoying this recipe for years! Originally a neighbor shared the recipe with my mother and she continued to make it! When I left home I copied the recipe and have been making it myself ever since. The recipe is simple and you can make it as is or add more ingredients if you’d like.
I make all sorts of bread from quick breads to traditional yeast breads. When we were busy raising our four children I made bread at least once a week. Our children really did not like store bought bread and much preferred my bread. I would bake three loaves at a time and freeze two to eat later. Sometimes this didn’t work so well as one loaf would get eaten right out of the oven. You have to admit there is nothing better than fresh baked bread still warm from the oven. Bread became one of the first things I no longer buy, especially when we had four children at home! It was just easier to make it myself!
Are you making your own soup? Homemade soup not only easy to make but you can actually replace buying canned soup! No more purchased chicken stock or tomato soup, you can make you own! Homemade tomato soup and a grilled cheese sandwich on your own bread is a perfect lunch!
Years ago we moved from Connecticut to Florida. In Connecticut we were used to delicious pizza that you could have delivered to your house. When we first moved to Florida we could not find a decent pizza anywhere. As a result my husband learned how to make the most delicious pizza. It didn’t happen over night and we had many pizzas where the crust was too thick or too thin. However it didn’t take long for him to perfect his pizza. I am so glad he did because now that we live in Vermont we once again live in an area where good pizza can be hard to find and not close by. We also make our own pizza sauce so we are enjoying a totally made from scratch meal!
I began making my own vanilla extract years ago. So easy and it makes enough to give as gifts too. Making Vanilla Extract at home is so easy! Once you’ve combined the vodka and vanilla beans you have to let it sit for 4-6 months before it is ready.
Have you made your own chicken broth yet? I have always made my chicken stock with the leftover chicken (or turkey) carcass. Recently I have been making my chicken stock using the whole chicken and my crockpot! When the process is finished I have 6-8 cups of cooked chicken meat, which I can use in a casserole, enchiladas or soup. I also end up with the most beautiful chicken stock! Homemade chicken stock can be frozen or pressure canned for later use.
We are currently dog-less but I still like to make dog biscuits for my daughter’s dog. This is an easy recipe with only four ingredients! If you’ve made cookies before you will find it very easy to make dog biscuits!
Living in Vermont our winters are long and dry and my hands suffer. I’ve been making this hand lotion for years and I love the relief it gives my hands. I use small mason jars to store the lotion in. If you can’t use it all up yourself give some away as gifts!
Even before I started reading about the items contained in a commercial brand of lip balm or chapstick I have been using this recipe. I love the natural ingredients and the fact that I can use our own beeswax to make this lip balm.
Several years ago we had our own beehives. One of the byproducts of having your own bees, besides honey is beeswax. There are many uses for beeswax including lip balm, sore muscle salve and wood butter. I love to make beeswax candles with the wax. Not only are they a beautiful color but they burn cleaner than paraffin candles and they burn slower and are usually dripless.
Growing up my mother never used dryer sheets. When our children were younger I used dryer sheets, as I loved that the clothes smelled “clean” and there was no static. As time went on and our lifestyle changed I began to experiment with making my own laundry detergent. I never thought of making my own homemade dryer sheets! To replace commercial dryer sheets I decided to try making my own. Recently I received this wonderful recipe for homemade dryer sheets from a friend of mine. Jen is also the one who has introduced me to essential oils and I think I am hooked!
Dryer balls are an eco-friendly alternative to dryer sheets and liquid fabric softener. Would they really help my clothes dry quicker with less static? Yes they do! They decrease the drying time, which saves you money on your utility bills. Unlike dryer sheets, wool dryer balls can be used over and over again. Wool dryer balls can be used for cloth diapers keeping them soft and chemical free. I loved the dryer balls and despite the fact that they often end up inside a sleeve or a pant leg I use them every time I dry a load in the dryer.
How hard could it be to make them myself? After searching the Internet I found several ways to make them. You can use yarn. What a perfect use for those small leftover balls of yarn I have in my yarn box!
When you compare the prices of cleaning products in the stores with the cost of making them at home you’d be surprised at how much you can really save! If you were to add up the toilet cleaner, kitchen cleaner, window cleaner etc. it seems the average clean household requires close to $150 worth of chemical supplies at all times. You can switch to the healthier alternatives sold in the stores but they are also expensive. The best choice for your budget and your health is to make them yourself. Homemade cleaners are just a few of the items I no longer buy.
We have bugs in Vermont especially in the spring. It’s no fun working in the garden having the bugs biting. I am really trying to get away from purchased cleaning products and decided I should try this bug spray as well. Much better for you than a commercial bug spray!
I am amazed at the items I no long buy. What started with making my own window cleaner and baking bread for the family has resulted in an abundance of items I make myself! The end result is a healthier lifestyle.