Here is your very first Thrifty Thursday tip! It's a simple one, and totally worth doing.
About 7 years ago my husband was out of work and we had to find as many ways as we could to save money. While this was a stressful time for us, it was also such a great blessing. I learned the difference between NEEDS and WANTS. I also learned that putting a little extra time into something (like cooking/baking things from scratch, or shopping thrift stores) really helped to save money in the long run.
THRIFTY THURSDAY TIP: STOP BUYING PANCAKE MIX AND SYRUP!
I haven't bought pancake mix in 7 years! My kids love pancakes and I make them about twice a week. From scratch. I want to share my super simple recipe with you. Now, this is by no means the healthiest pancake recipe you will find, but I wanted to share the easiest, cheapest recipe I have. Something you can whip up without having to go out and buy healthier alternatives to things like all purpose flour, granulated sugar and vegetable oil. This is fast, simple, and CHEAP! And, of course, the kids can do it too.
I can't remember the last time I looked at a recipe for this, or where I even got it. It is just stored in my brain.
Dry ingredients: 2 C flour, 2 Tbs. sugar, 4 tsp. baking powder, 1/2 tsp. salt
Wet ingredients: 2 C milk, 4 Tbs. vegetable oil, 2 eggs
Mix dry and wet ingredients in separate bowls, then combine. Use a 1/4 C scoop to pour batter onto warmed pans (medium heat). When bubbles start to form, flip. Makes about 20+ 4 inch pancakes. Enough to feed my 5 kids and myself.
You can use whole wheat flour instead of white flour, applesauce instead of vegetable oil, and add some flax seed to make it more healthy. Sometimes we add bananas, berries, chocolate chips, etc. to the batter to change it up from time to time. My 11 y.o. and 9 y.o. can make these all on their own (I still help the 9 y.o. with the flipping).
BUT WAIT! YOU CAN'T HAVE PANCAKES WITHOUT SYRUP!
We have made some super tasty syrups over the past few years (raspberry, blueberry, cinnamon apple butter, orange honey), but since this is about not spending money I'll share the most basic recipe we use. It is loaded with sugar, but at least I don't have to worry about any high fructose corn syrup, right? Ha!
Mix together 3/4 C brown sugar, 1/2 C granulated sugar, 1/2 C water, 1 tsp. vanilla, & a pinch of salt in a small pan over med/high heat. Stir constantly until boiling. Use warm or put in a jar and store in the fridge. Heat it up later by simply setting it on the back of the stove while you're cooking your pancakes. So easy!
If you already make these things from scratch, kudos to you! We'd love to hear what your favorite combinations are. If not, you should totally give it a try. Hopefully you'll save yourself some money AND create something more delicious and healthy than you can get from a package. Happy Thursday!!!