Frugal Friday- Free Food!

Just discovered Frugal Fridays at Biblical Womanhood  and realized our Thursday afternoon outing fit it perfectly. 

 We live in a farming community.  Right now the onion harvest is in full swing.  Warehouses in our area sort the onions and discard crates and crates full of perfectly decent but ‘imperfect’ onions. 

But instead of just throwing them away, the packing companies set the crates in their parking lot.  Anyone can come and get as many onions as they want.

onion-picking We have been doing this for years.  We bring lots of boxes, and routinely pick up enough onions, that, wrapped in newspaper will stay good and last us through February.

we got 5 boxes of these! This time when we went, there were white onions.  Other years we have gotten yellow and purple ones.  In November, they also give away carrots.  Free food– that’s about as frugal as you can get.

Onion blossomsCheck with farm packing companies to see if anyone gives away these goodies in your neck of the woods.  Oh, and this last picture is of the onion blossoms we had for dinner on Thursday evening!

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  1. Lucky for you, that’s a really great find.

    One thing you can also do with the onions is make relish and can it. This could make really lovely gifts for people if you wanted to put in the time and energy to make it.

  2. Neat! I’ve never been able to find any good gleaning opportunities in my area.

  3. Yum! We love onions! I wish that they had these sorts of
    opportunities where I live!

  4. The onion blossom picture has me drooling. I’d even have one for breakfast now if available! I love ’em!

    There’s a food processing facility about 20 miles from here which gives away cast-off pumpkins. I’ve never gone over because, as your recent post noted, one pumpkin goes a long, long way for a family’s eating enjoyment.

  5. Around fruit harvest time you can also ask around or post a flier that you pick people’s unwanted fruit.
    Most supermarkets also put crates out with overripe fruit, rather than putting them straight in the trash. If you are not too sqeamish, you can find only slightly bruised fruit and veggies for free!

  6. Pickled onions are so good — and I’m sure you’re just dying to do more canning…;)

    One thing I’ve done with oodles of onions is to carmelize them, and then freeze them. They come in really handy — I can add them to quiche, soup, stew, sandwiches, pizza, etc., and carmelizing them reduces their volume hugely. Having them frozen means making french onion soup takes almost no time at all.

  7. Good idea Anne! Nun-like, I have taken a no-more-canning-this-year vow. But I think I could stand to cook and freeze a few baggies full of onions….

  8. I had no idea they did this! I’ll be doing some onion-diving myself soon!

    thanks for sharing this…

  9. Just read your “other blog” and as I am too tired/lazy to create yet another new login…I am posting here…hope you don’t mind…

    Your remarks about loving and cherishing the moments of this brief time in her life are so refreshing…I have always done my best to not “rush” my babies through to adulthood or more independence from me only so I can have more time for me…

    But, realized as reading your post…I’ve been doing a bit of procrastinating on enjoying these moments more fully…I keep saying to myself…tomorrow I’ll play with them more during the day…tomorrow night I’ll stay with them longer (even tho is’t not a “scheduled” snuggle night of which we have on Thursdays)…I’ll let soandso sit on my lap a little longer later today…

    Thank you for reminding me I need to slow down and enjoy my babes in the moment…for I won’t be getting unlimited supplies.

  10. Free is good.

    I am sure you know this, but you can store your onions in old nylons – put an onion to the toe, tie a knot, put in another onion to the knot, tie a knot – then you just clip off an onion to use and keep the rest in a cool, dark place.

    I followed Mary Poppins NOT’s link, this is a lovely place. Thank you.


  1. […] 9th, 2007 by Owlhaven Way back last October, I told you about getting free onions every year. Most years I feel fortunate if I have onions past Christmas. One year I made it all the […]