Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Homemade Bread and a Giveaway

Welcome to my post for the Des Moines Area Frugal Blog Tour! Thank you Julia for hosting such a great tour. Be sure to check out all the bloggers involved, you are sure to come away with some great frugal ideas. I am fairly new to baking my own bread. I would make a loaf here and there, but never really thought about substituting my store bought bread with fresh homemade bread. It seemed a little intimidating. Then I discovered that baking bread was really not that hard, nor was it as time consuming as I once thought (thanks to some great bread machine recipes!) Now I would say that I make roughly 80% of the bread consumed by my family. I also make all my own biscuits, pizza crust, cinnamon rolls and dinner rolls.

Knowing all the ingredients and being able to control how my bread is made really appealed to me and is what got me started. Homemade bread is obviously fresher and much healthier than most store bought breads. When I looked at the ingredients list on the store bought bread that we used to buy, I was shocked to see the how many different ones were listed. Some of them I couldn't even pronounce. My homemade bread recipe calls for 6 ingredients, one of which is water.

Bread made from scratch is fresher, it certainly tastes better, and I know the recipe I use is healthier than most store bought breads. But is it really considered "frugal"? Is it cheaper to make your own bread? I decided to do the math and see.

Here is the break down of the ingredients used for my sandwich bread.

1 cup water
3 tbs sugar (I use raw sugar which I buy in bulk) = $.09
1 packet yeast (I buy this in bulk) $.05
2 cups bread flour (usually buy flour for around $.99 lb) = $.20
1 cup whole wheat flour = (this can vary depending on where I buy my flour) = $.32
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil ( I buy this in bulk from Sam's Club) = $.34
1 1/2 tsp salt $.01

Cost of the ingredients for my homemade bread recipe is roughly $1.01. There are ways to make it cheaper. Using all white flour or using regular oil instead of EVOO for example. But this is how I like my bread and feel it is healthiest for my family.

I can usually find store brand generic white bread on sale for around $1.00. If you are looking for whole wheat bread the price will go up. Artisan breads can sell for $2-$4 at the store. You can make your own by reading here. The bread I typically buy for my family is normally $1.99 per loaf, $1.59 when it is on sale. So, by making my own bread I am saving a minimum of $.59 each loaf.

Only you can decide if it is worth the time and effort to bake your own bread. I would consider making your own bread a frugal alternative to buying store bought bread. Plus nothing beats the smell of fresh bread baking in the oven.

Now how about a give-a-way? I am giving away one copy of my new ebook "Learning the Frugal Life Grocery Rules". This ebook covers some of my most useful posts as well as additional information that isn't on the blog. The ebook will give you great advice for getting started with coupons, where to find coupons, how to organize and use them effectively, learning to meal plan as well as many other helpful tips all at your fingertips.

There are 4 ways to enter. You can do one or all of the following.
1. Just leave me a comment on this post telling me how you save money on groceries.
2. Become a follower of Learning the Frugal Life
3. Subscribe by email. You can do so at the top of my site. Then leave a comment letting me know.
4. You can "like" Learning the Frugal Life on Facebook. Leave an additional comment letting me know.

One winner will be chosen December 3rd at 8 pm. Make sure you check back to see if that's you. Also the Frugal Blog Tour continues until December 15 so be sure to check out the rest of the stops for some great frugal tips and advice.


  1. We have a family of 7 so we make a conscious effort not to eat outside of the house and make as much as we can from scratch. So, that's how we save money. Oh yeah, and coupous, coupons, coupons!!!!

  2. With mounting hospital bills and an adoption under way I have gotten creative with our grocery budget. A few months ago I found an amazing little discount grocery store. In this store there are tons of organic foods that are not even OOD. For example, I am able to get my EVOO for $1.29 a bottle. I do still have to go to HyVee to get my dairy and produce. I just stock up on yogurt when it is on sale.

    I also use coupons (except at the discount store), we rarely eat out, we pack our lunches, if I HAVE to have pop I buy a 2-liter bottle when it is on sale for $1.00, and I ALWAYS look at the unit price for the best deal.

  3. I do our big grocery trip once a month and MENU-PLAN! It saves mental energy and saves me money when I use what I have in the pantry. I also double a lot of recipes to freeze one for later.

  4. We are a family of six, so groceries can really add up if we're not careful. I stock up on food when it's on sale to use throughout the year. I bake my own desserts, and make our meals from what I find on sale each week.

  5. I shop at aldi's unless I see items that are cheaper at other stores.

  6. I LOVE your blog and would really enjoy learning more about your frugal lifestyle. I save money by clipping coupons, looking at the clearance rack, buying clothes that are out of season for the next year, and of course by reading your blog and combining sales with coupons. We always get our gas at Kum and Go on Sunday so we can get the free paper that is full of ads and coupons. I love to shop at Walmart where they always price match other stores ads. I always try to save money any way I can. Thanks so much for your posts and helping others to save money too! You are awesome Sara!

  7. I love your blog, I have followed for a while and have used quite a few of your tips. When we began a 1 income family last year we knew we had to make changes and your ideas have really helped us. Meal planning, coupons and all the other tips have been lifesavers! We have just started considering your homemade bread ideas, this might be the reason to start in 2011!!

  8. We also just started reviewing our expenses for the last year to better prepare for our taxes and I found it ironic you posted the same thoughts in your prior blog!

  9. Wonderful post, I love making my own bread too. I use a bread machine I bought at a garage sale, so it's even less effort than going to the store most of the time! And you're certainly right about the wonderful smell!!

  10. Hi again, Sara, I just subscribed. I'm glad to have found your blog from the Frugal blog tour.

  11. I also follow on Facebook.

  12. I am a subscriber as well.