Rachel Paxton

Article Summary:

Bulk buying is not only less expensive, it can save you time.

Bulk Buying: How to Buy in Bulk Effectively

Shoppers have enjoyed the convenience of bulk buying for a number of years. My own experiences buying in bulk have been hit and miss at best, but I recently discovered just how convenient bulk buying can be.

There are a number of advantages to bulk buying:

  • some items are available only in bulk
  • you can choose the quantity
  • bulk prices are usually less than packaged prices
  • less packaging
  • less additives and preservatives when you make your own meals and mixes
  • more variety
  • often healthy alternatives not always otherwise available

When you buy in bulk it's a good idea to get your cupboards in order. There are a number of ways you can store bulk items:

  • recycled plastic containers and glass jars
  • Rubbermaid or Ziploc containers (4 4
  • cup Ziploc containers cost less than $2)
  • resealable bags
  • for some items (e.g. oatmeal) you can re
  • use the original container

A key to bulk storage is labeling. Make sure all containers are air - tight and clearly labeled and dated. Bulk items have a long shelf life because they have been prepared with long - term storage in mind.

I've always wondered if bulk items are as fresh as packaged. In my experience bulk items have been very fresh - even raisins! You'd be amazed at all the things you can buy in bulk. Here's a partial list to get you thinking of the possibilities:

Baking:
  • flours
  • cornmeal
  • spices
  • chocolate, carob, peanut butter, butterscotch chips
  • raisins
  • sugars
Grains:
  • granolas
  • oats (regular, quick
  • cooking)
  • rice (all kinds)
  • cereals (all kinds)
Dried Fruits:
  • pineapple
  • apricots
  • raisins
  • papaya
  • bananas
  • apples
  • cranberries
  • prunes
  • dates
Beans:
  • split peas
  • navy beans
  • pinto beans
  • kidney beans
  • soy beans
  • soup blends
Pasta:
  • spaghetti
  • lasagna
  • elbow macaroni
  • egg noodles (all shapes and sizes)
Nuts:
  • peanuts
  • sunflower seeds
  • almonds (whole, slivered)
  • walnuts
Vegetables:
  • sun - dried tomatoes
  • peppers

Rachel Paxton is a freelance writer and mom who is the author of the "What's for Dinner?" cookbook, a cookbook containing more than 250 quick easy dinner ideas. For recipes, tips to organize your home, home decorating, crafts, and frugal living, visit Creative Homemaking at www.creative homemaking.com.

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