Operation Pantry Cook Down

As I've mentioned on IG or Twitter, I'm on a mission to cut down my pantry.  Our new place has a smaller pantry even though there are more cabinets in general, there is less room for food (by about half) in the actual pantry.  So that has resulted in some serious kitchen sprawl....




There is literally NO room in the inn.  So in an effort to contain the food sprawl and to help contain the budget this month I'm engaging in Operation Pantry Cook Down (and pantry is a relative term - it's also a fridge/freezer cook down).  I have a few weeks until we start the Ultimate Reset (which will require some serious shopping anyway) so my goal is to cook from the pantry instead of shopping so much.  My goal is to spend no more than $75/week on groceries (we usually spend like $160) to buy fresh fruits, vegetables, milk/almond milk and if there are some things we run out of over the next 3 weeks.

Last night I made my first meal - spaghetti with a seitan-tomato sauce with coleslaw on the side.  I was pretty pleased with myself when I just opened the cabinets and threw this together.  Cooking this meal got rid of 5 containers out of the house, which was pretty cool.  The spaghetti was pretty easy - I took 8 oz of seitan and sauteed it in a little EVOO for about 5 minutes.  I added some basil, parsley, and oregano while I was cooking it.  After it was nice and browned, I added a jar of Trader Joe's marinara sauce and a spoon of minced garlic and a few dashes of pepper and let that simmer for about 10 minutes. Meanwhile I let the spaghetti cook.  I don't like a saucy spaghetti, so after the spaghetti was done, I added it to the sauce until it was just the right consistency and served with a dash of Parmesan on top and a little pepper.

There was enough for leftovers so I will eat them tonight (unless my hubby destroyed them for lunch, lol).  That was the easiest meal I have to make, lol.  I am really excited to stretch my cooking creativity to make some new creations.  Hopefully they are delish and I will share them if they work out!  Hopefully I can get through most of April with only spending about half I usually do in the grocery store and end up ready for the reset with a clean pantry :)