Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Cleaning Out the Freezer Challenge

I've been taking part in a "Cleaning Out the Freezer/Pantry" Challenge on the Compact List for the month of June.

I took some pictures on June 1(or thereabouts)of my freezer spaces and my pantry. I'm finally getting around to posting them here. It's a little embarrassing showing them to the world, as things are not nice and neatly placed and stacked. I have more of a 'cram-it-in-until-the-door-closes' method.lolol
I hope to revisit the same photos at the end of June to see if there is a visible, discernible reduction in the sheer VOLUME of Food in these spaces.
Here is the little freezer compartment over the fridge.
Notice the blocks of cheese in the door and the leftover containers of vegetable stock. What you can't see are the cardboard boxes of vegetables lining the back wall of the space. Lots of little boxes with a big green man on it.

Here's the standing Freezer in the garage.
Many packages of bacon, hidden behind a ham or two, packages of chicken parts, hot dogs & corn on the cob & zukes I put up last fall. The drawer in the bottom has a tukey under all those bags of veggies.

And here is the door of the Standing Freezer.
Here's the Kingdom of Butter, some sausage rolls, walnuts, pepper strips put up last fall and more little boxes of Ho-Ho-Ho veggies. The frozen veggies need to be eaten since the fresh stuff in season will be here shortly.

Now for the Pantry in the Kitchen....Top shelves, then Bottom shelves.

Top to bottom.....Condiments, dressings, marinades, sauces. Then the grain, noodles, cracker shelf.

Tomato sauce, meats, soups, peanut butter, fruits on one shelf.
Baking supplies, oils, oatmeals, snacks, dog treats and the **gasp**dreaded paper napkins.

I figure there are two components to this Challenge.

First, to use up what you have, especially items that are dwelling in the deep dark recesses of the back of the freezer or pantry. You know, those forgotten cuts of meat or partial bags of veggies that aren't large enough to make a meal out of for everyone you need to feed, or the getting ready to head to 'freezer burn heaven' baggy of bell pepper strips you froze last fall, or the unidentifiable-until -you-thaw-it, 'whatever-it-is'. And how about that tortilla soup that sounded so yummy in the store but makes your lower jaw retract now, or the strange hoity-toity English lemon curd you got in that gift basket from Aunt Tooty last Holiday Season you can't seem to try. Let's repurpose those unloved canned goods or rice mixes into some fine fare for the family. It's time to dig all those unrecognizable chilled foods out and disguise them or turn them into culinary masterpieces for all at your table to enjoy.

Secondly, while you are using up what is already in your arsenal, you need to refrain from adding more foodstuff OR avoiding the Challenge altogether by dining out instead.

The 1st Week of June I did very well using goodies from the freezer & pantry. I also did well by only spending $1.79 on additional groceries for the entire week!

Then life happened. Meaning, then #1 son graduated and the relatives showed up. I was forced to spend money on Cook-Out ingredients. Then there was some dining out too. I still was able to use up some food from freezer & pantry that week despite the money I spent on new foods brought into the house.

Week 3 of June and I'm back on track with the Eating from the Freezer/Pantry Challenge. Only 3 people this week to feed but we are using up some items that have just hung around here too long. Tomorrow I'll be getting rid of a huge bag of PIZZA ROLLS. See them?....up there in the 2nd pic, standing upside down on the 2nd shelf in the big freezer.
Daughter insisted I buy these back in's a Huge Bag! I think she ate 4 pieces. UGH
#2 son's friends will be here for lunch and will make them ALL disappear in short order. ;-)
If they like them I have a 2nd bag they can take home with them.

So how about joining in on our venture to Use Up the Stuff that's Been Hanging Around Too Long!
Post some pics and send us the link.



  1. I am doing my best to eat the quarter of a cow in my freezer. My DH tells me the other day that he wants to return to vegetarianism and I totally blew up! WTH? You bought the cow, and now you want me to be the only one eating it? No way, no how!
    The trouble is I have to eat the cow as well and I am having adverse affects from eating too much meat.

    Too bad we aren't closer. I could trade out some cow for something you might have too much of!
    Oh, and for each 10 lbs. of cow you get a free box of tea!! :)

  2. I love your pics! Here I was thinking my freezers were stuffed, but I bow to your stuffing prowess :) I have two cases of things in my freezer that I just do not know what to do with. One contains about 6 (originally 10) so-called "senior meals" from an Angel Food box from late last year. These taste dreadful, but are ... edible so I'm loathe to throw them out. I guess I need to thaw them and use the salvageable parts in something else to disguise them.

    The other case contains 10 LBS of breaded chicken tenders. I swear I did not think about who was going to eat these - DH & I enjoyed the 1-lb bag we'd eaten, so I grabbed the 10-lb box when it was offered. But now that there are only two of us and we're mostly skipping dinners (not eating out, just not eating anything), I'm at a loss. So the case stays in my freezer.

    I need to have like a huge outdoor party (or go to one) where I can prepare all 10 lbs of tenders and just hand them out.

  3. LisaPie--What?...only 1 free box of tea with each 10lbs??!!LMAOPIMP

    Pretty--I have frozen/refridgerated stuff I'd love to donate too to the Food Bank here. Problem is, they don't have the refridgeration to handle cold donations. They'll only take shelf stable stuff.
    I like the party idea to get rid of all those chicken tenders tho. Heck, if you can't find a party to invite yourself to, Throw one!
    Or have a blog giveaway & the tenders can be the prize....if all else fails, you can hand them out at Halloween as Trick or Treat goodies!!bwwwwaaaaahhhhh
    Now show us YOUR freezer pics. ;-)


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