Scrumptious Blueberry Muffins
Buckwheat Blueberry Waffles
I am pleased to say that I have stayed within a $65 grocery budget for 3 weeks in a row. I'd like to squeak it down to $60/week, and I am nearly there!
I discovered that my son's almond milk is cheaper in the refrigerated section of the grocery store- $3.56 per half-gallon instead of $4.99 in the aseptic carton (when it's not on sale). I've been getting a $1.50 off one half-gallon at the checkout the past three weeks, which helps.
Getting variety into my son's diet, while keeping the lunch-preparation time to a minimum, has been a challenge. I have been packing a Kashi cereal bar as a snack most days. It's easy to grab, tastes good to him, and has whole grains. Unfortunately, it's almost $4 for 6 bars. I've been experimenting with packing a home-baked but healthy goodie instead, including banana bread, pumpkin muffins, cinnamon muffins, and today's experiment, whole wheat blueberry muffins.
For the Blueberry Muffins, I used this recipe, but added two medium eggs (my son does not have an egg allergy), used plain almond milk, one cup wheat and one cup white flour, dairy-free Willow Run margarine, and frozen blueberries (much more economical when out of season). I think the light lemony flavor from the lemon juice and zest, plus the teensy sprinkling of sugar atop the muffins before baking, made all the difference. These muffins were fantastic. I don't care for the flavor of almond milk, but I can't taste it in these muffins. I will absolutely make them again! As it is, my husband engulfed 5 muffins within an hour of leaving the oven.
Since blueberries are so popular with The Boy, I generally have been sending a blueberry waffle with him for breakfast, plus unsweetened applesauce with cinnamon. Kashi waffles have more whole grain, but are pricey as hell. I finally decided to invest in a waffle iron, since a waffle has been the favored breakfast item on a daily basis. I waited until it was on sale, used a 20% off coupon, and bought it for $35. Using a buckwheat pancake mix, I can make 4 large waffles with added frozen blueberries in less than 10 minutes. I've been keeping them in the fridge and lightly toasting them in the mornings. So far, there have been no complaints from the toddler. I was spending $3.50-$4 a week for 6 waffles. I can get Hodgson Mills Buckwheat Pancake Mix for $3.30/box (about 5 serving for waffles), and a pound of frozen blueberries for about $4. I'd guess it costs maybe $2 for 7 waffles per week. Yes, I could probably buy cheap store-brand waffles for less- but these are far superior nutritionally.
Once I'm out of the current mix, I plan on experimenting with making my own whole-grain pancake mix for less.