7 Foods to Make Not Buy


| 8/24/2018 11:16:00 AM


I follow three simple rules in my kitchen: no packaging, nothing processed, no waste. I should add a fourth: no effort. I do love cooking but I also love easy. I understand that not everyone will want to bake their own bread (it tastes SO much better than store-bought though!) but the following foods take less time to make than to buy and schlep home from the store. And if you can find your ingredients in bulk, these money-saving homemade versions have little to no wasteful packaging.

1. Vanilla Extract

Pour 1 cup of vodka, bourbon, rum, brandy or single-malt whiskey over 3 split vanilla pods you’ve placed in a mason jar. Shake jar once a week or whenever you remember to. Wait two months or longer to use. You’ll find more details for vanilla extract here

vanilla extract copy
Homemade vanilla extract, day 1. Photo by Anne Marie Bonneau.

2. Bread Crumbs

You can make bread crumbs in several different ways. I cube stale bread, whir the cubes in my blender with a bit of salt and herbs and then toast the crumbs on a cookie sheet in the oven at 300°F for 5 to 10 minutes, until slightly browned.

3. Nut Butters

I grew up on Kraft Peanut Butter. I couldn’t find its ingredients online. I did, however, found the ingredients online for Jif Creamy Peanut Butter:



ROASTED PEANUTS AND SUGAR, CONTAINS 2% OR LESS OF: MOLASSES, FULLY HYDROGENATED VEGETABLE OILS (RAPESEED AND SOYBEAN), MONO AND DIGLYCERIDES, SALT.