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Cook in Bulk to Save on Groceries

Biljana Dimovska - Mummy Blog | 9 March 2012

Stock Photo

Keep your freezer stocked up with homemade meals...

...and there'll always be something delicious to eat, even when you don't feel like cooking!

If you're looking for quick and easy ways to save money on your monthly outgoings then you should start with the kitchen. Food offers the perfect way to save and whether it's slashing your grocery bill, or cutting down on takeaways, there's always more money to be saved. One great way to save cash is to cook in bulk it will also save you a lot of time as well, as you won't need to slave away over a hot stove every night of the week. You can cook one night and have meals prepared for the next three or four.

Choose your dishes

If you're going to cook in bulk, you need to decide on the kind of dishes that you'll prepare. Obviously, this needs to be food you enjoy eating, as you might end up eating quite a lot of it and you don't want to get bored after the first night. If you are preparing for any nights you are eating without the kids, you'll need to prepare your meals in single or two-serving dishes; if you are preparing to feed the family, you can prepare large dishes as each serving will be eaten in one sitting.

Buy in bulk

If you buy your ingredients in bulk you can save money at the till. Check to see which supermarkets have bargains and buy batches of the ingredients you'll need for your meals. Next you need to check that you've got plenty of space in your freezer. Whilst you can leave a portion or two in the fridge, realistically, you probably won't want to eat the same meal four nights in a row. If you freeze it, you know that you've always got a quick and easy meal option when you need it. Once you've cleared some space, gather all your freezer proof dishes. It helps if these are also ovenproof, as you'll be able to defrost you meal and put it straight in the oven, meaning less fuss and less washing up.

Ideas for meals

Shepherd's pie is a good bulk meal as you can make up large batches or individual portions. Stews and casseroles are also good for bulk cooking, as is soup. A Bolognese sauce can make the basis of many meals so this is a great one to freeze in small batches, ready for Spaghetti Bolognese, Lasagne or meat pies. And how about mousaka, pasta bakes or curries? These are all great standby meals, perfect for when you've had a busy day and just can't face heading home and straight into the kitchen. It's great to know you've always got a delicious homemade meal at the ready.

Of course always ensure that your frozen meals are heated through thoroughly (piping hot in the centre) before serving.

Cooking in bulk is a great way to make the most of bargains at the supermarket as you can buy in large quantities and cook everything before it's past its use-by date. Plus, it doesn't take any longer to cook three Lasagnas, than it does to cook one, so you're getting multiple meals for a fraction of the effort!

By Biljana Dimovska
Biljana is a writer and blogger on best daily deals Sydney wide





This article may not be reprinted, reproduced, or retransmitted in whole or in part without the express written consent of SingleMum.com.au. The views of the author are not necessarily representative of those of SingleMum.com.au. This article contains only general information, correct at the date of publication. For advice regarding your own personal circumstances, always seek individual advice from a qualified professional. Read the full Singlemum.com.au Disclaimer here


What does it mean to be a single mum?Of course, the

kids

are the most important thing in a single mum's life. Kids are the focus and always have been. But along with the children, there are other matters that can confuse a single mum's life.

Centrelink

plays a big part of a single mother's life, mainly because this is where a large percentage of single mums get their finances from. Centrelink are the source from where the

single mother pension

, or as it is otherwise known, the single parent payment comes from. The single mother pension is a subsistence amount, but just the same, it is money to live on, and so it is important, no matter if it is called single parent payment, single mother pension or whatever Centrelink welfare classes it at the time

Often, single mums come out of a

divorce

or defacto relationship only to find that their troubles have just begun, and find that their first step leads them towards Family Law - it's time to engage a lawyer.
There are more than just Centrelink finance problems to worry about, as mentioned before, but also

child custody

issues. Child custody is something that hits right at the heart of

single mums

. If a single mother's ex husband or ex partner has been a domestic violence perpetrator, the mum may be greatly worried about child custody. They worry that their kids won't be safe with their spouse, who has already proven to be abusive because they caused

domestic violence

, which resulted in a divorce or separation.

Even so,

Family Court

will often still order a form of child custody named

Shared Parenting

. Shared Parenting is a form of child custody division of time or parental responsibility between the parents. Mother's often look for a good divorce lawyer to try to avoid share parenting with an abusive ex-spouse after divorce, however in many cases Shared Parenting is still the outcome after the divorce, no matter how good the divorce lawyers have been. They will often settle for visitation at a contact centre or access centre where fathers or mothers are supervised during child custody access.

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