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Cooking from scratch VS. Cooking w/ prepacked foods

In your opinion/experience which one is cheaper? To cook from scratch or to cook prepacked foods....I know that from scratch is healthier...And, if it is cheaper also...I think I will put forth more effort to cook from scratch... TIA

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Asked by Briyawna at 12:56 PM on Feb. 20, 2009 in Food & Drink

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Answers (9)
  • Honestly prepackaged food i think. But I prefer cook from scratch. It usually taste better.

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:00 PM on Feb. 20, 2009

  • Usually when you cook from scratch you purchase food items that will last more than one meal. Flour, bread crumbs, seasonings all come with more than on usage. For example I could make Italian chicken in my crock-pot, with those leftovers I can may chicken enchiladas the next night. Usually I make mexican rice as a side dish for enchiladas and make the seasoning myself. To make just theses to meals would cost me twice as much, I actually have priced it out.

    Answer by efsuermann at 1:03 PM on Feb. 20, 2009

  • I think it's cheaper to do from scratch. It doesn't necessarily seem like it at first glance, but in the end it is. Partly b/c you buy items that last thru more than one meal or more than one purpose (i.e. flour bakes cookies and cakes, can put a coating on pork chops, thicken gravy, etc.), and also b/c you can make a meal from scratch that will leave you with leftovers for another dinner or for lunch, whereas the packaged food lasts one meal, and sometimes, depending on family size, you have to buy two of the packaged meal just to make the one meal.

    Answer by tropicalmama at 1:07 PM on Feb. 20, 2009

  • you rockWow efsuermann. I was the first poster and you have changed my mind. I never thought of it that way. And I never thought of using left overs as a new meal. Thanks!


    Answer by Anonymous at 1:07 PM on Feb. 20, 2009

  • Once you get your pantry stocked, it's way cheaper!!! It might seem like it costs more the first few times because you don't have everything on hand, but once you get it all in your house, you save a lot. A couple months back, I spent a few hundred dollars and just got basic pantry items: canned goods, flour, sugar, etc. .... I was not used to having anything like that in the house because I figured prepacked was cheaper. But then someone in one of the recipe groups did a breakdown of how much each ingredient cost, verses buying the food from the store for several recipes .... the result was either the same price, or less to make it from scratch. Combine that with the health benefits, and it was a no-brainer for me.

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:43 PM on Feb. 20, 2009

  • My 1st attempt for cooking from scratch is going to be baking a couple loaves of white bread w/out a bread machine since I do not have one..

    Answer by Briyawna at 1:48 PM on Feb. 20, 2009

  • I like semi-homemade. I do both

    Answer by chefjen at 2:06 PM on Feb. 20, 2009

  • There is an ad for Kentucky Fried Chicken, I think that is it, and the mom and son are in a grocery store pricing how much it would cost to make the chicken from scratch. A bag of flour, a box of salt, a box of pepper, the oil for frying and so forth. They are amazed that it is "so much more expensive than buying a meal deal from KFC!" So they leave the store to get their KFC. The thing that the writers of the didn't mention is that when you buy the ingredients that other than buying the chicken you have all the ingredients now and they will last for several batches of chicken. The other thing that I care about is that when I cook meals from scratch I have a better idea of what is in the food. What preservatives, if any, what food colorings, for example.

    Answer by Bmat at 5:05 PM on Feb. 20, 2009

  • I cook 95% from scratch. There is no way we could eat like we do if I were buying prepared foods. Homemade foods are much better for you. Packaged foods are loaded with sodium and fat. You can control all of that if you are cooking for yourself. I buy large packages of flour (25lbs.) and rice (10 lbs.) and dry beans (10 lbs.). When you price that out by the serving, you are spending pennies. I make a loaf of homemade bread for about $.25. I mix white and wheat flour and add no preservatives. It tastes a million times better, is healthier and costs next to nothing. I freeze bread dough and baked loaves both. Remember that the larger quantity you buy, the cheaper it will be because you aren't paying for packaging. I have a large chest freezer and a lot of dry storage space. I buy in large quantities and break it down into sizes I need for my cooking. I could go on for hours on making homemade stock and freezing.

    Answer by Marwill at 6:19 PM on Feb. 20, 2009

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