While Easter dinner may not be in the same league as Thanksgiving dinner, it is still a time when we typically splurge on a big meal to share with family and friends. However, there is no reason you have to empty your wallet to have a great meal on Easter, here are 3 easy ways to save money on your dinner.
Look for sales on these items this week:
- Baking supplies
- Dinner rolls
- Frozen and canned veggies
In addition, here are three easy ways to keep your Easter affordable, yet delicious.
Plan dishes around inexpensive ingredients
Rather than plan your menu off recipes that have long ingredient lists, look for simple dishes that use fewer, inexpensive foods. If your family does a brunch, egg dishes, French toast and homemade pancakes are all cheap and easy and yet can taste so good.
For dinner, buy seasonal sides and prepare them simply. Mixed greens can be turned into a stunning salad with just a few garnishes and some light dressing. Or steamed asparagus with a little butter can be an elegant dish that complements any type of main course meat.
Buy your meat at a deep discount
Speaking of your main course, you want to buy a quality cut but that doesn’t mean you can’t get a deal. Hams, in particular, goes on deep discount this time of year. For example, this week at Meijer, both spiral sliced and shank ham is almost half off. Meanwhile, Spartan shoppers may be able to score a free ham using their Yes card rewards.
Ham is popular but it isn’t the only item on sale. Meijer is also selling rib roasts for more than half off, and other stores may have a variety of meats such lamb legs or beef roasts on sale. If you have always bought a certain cut of meat for Easter, but it’s not on sale this year, step outside the box. Try something new and you may discover a new family favorite!
Raid your freezer and pantry
Finally, don’t forget to use what you have on hand. Even if you don’t have a super couponing stockpile, you likely have food in the pantry, the fridge and the freezer. Before hitting the store, check for canned or frozen veggies, spices and condiments. Maybe you picked up a clearance priced ham after Christmas and tucked it away in your freezer. Now is the time to pull that baby out!
Don’t feel locked into a traditional Easter meal either. If you have ingredients such as pasta, rice or beans on hand, consider using them as the base for some dishes. If you aren’t sure what to do with them, visit allrecipes.com and use their ingredient search feature. It will give you suggestions for new recipes that are worthy of your holiday dinner.
In the end, remember that Easter shouldn’t be about having the perfect centerpiece with the perfect food in the perfectly decorated house. Instead, it should be about spending time with family and friends while reflecting on the gifts and blessings we have been so generously given.
Josh Elledge is the Chief Executive “Angel” of SavingsAngel, Inc. – launched from his Holland, Michigan home in January 2007.
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