This month in the Eat Well, Spend Less series we’re taking a look at the holiday season and keeping the budget under control. Here you’ll find advice for getting ready for the next week by stocking up this weekend.
So, Christmas is now exactly one week away. If you’re like me, it has suddenly hit you that this is the last weekend to prepare before the big to-do of the holiday hits. So, it’s time to hit the grocery store, stock up and make it worth your while in the stress department as well.
While you can’t shop for perishables for your Christmas dinner just yet, this weekend is a good time to get into the store and make sure you have plenty of the essentials for the coming week so you can spend it baking and decorating and having a merry ol’ time and avoid a huge shopping list the day before Christmas. A few things you may want to consider getting now include:
Grab these items now so you aren’t staring at an empty shelf later in the week. Make a list of your final baking goals and go from there to create your list. Don’t forget to include spices for any Christmas meal items, too.
::sugars (granulated, brown, confectioners’)
::baking powder and soda
::chocolate (cocoa powder, hot chocolate, baking and sweetened, chips)
::spices (cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg,)
::extracts (vanilla, almond, peppermint)
Easy Meal Ingredients
Keep your weeknight meals easy this week and plan ahead. Sandwiches, soups and other things that can be thrown together easily and with little pomp and circumstance are the perfect accompaniment to getting those last Christmas shopping trips and holiday plays done without stress or the drive-thru.
::pastas and sauce
::sandwich fixings (meats, bread, condiments, cheese)
::salad essentials (lettuce, toppings, dressings)
::easy proteins (chicken, canned beans, hummus)
Less Perishable Christmas Meal Ingredients
Get the essentials taken care of, so you can just focus on perishables later in the week. Whether you’re planning a traditional meal or one with a bit of flare, there are always a few things you can pick up now to avoid searching for it in the supermarket crowd the day before Christmas.
::frozen items (meat or vegetables)
Get Snacks Together
Grab your appetizers early, and then just fill in the blanks before the big day. There are plenty of items that can be picked up beforehand.
::crackers and cheeses
::olives and pickles
Something to Drink and Be Merry With
Plenty of beverages are key to a good party. Make a trip to the liquor store now, and plan your nonalcoholic beverages this weekend as well.
::apple cider (with ingredients for mulled cider or wassail)
::coffee assortment (with sweeteners)
::spirits (and mixers)
As always, you can check out what others are writing in the Eat Well, Spend Less series on keeping it frugal for the holiday season: