Frugal Friday: When One Meal Morphs Into Another

I saw this article yesterday The Never-Ending Soup Pot and thought it was a great explanation of a concept that can save you time and let you use your food in a very affordable way. Very often a meal doesn’t have to be a completely new beginning. Often you can use building blocks from another meal.

I personally have never served soup every day for a week. However I often cook multiples meals in stages. For example, this last Saturday I cooked a turkey, which we served with mashed potatoes and gravy. The next day (after making a HUGE pot of bone broth with the turkey bones) I made turkey noodle soup, enough that we had it for two meals. One Tuesday we had turkey sandwiches for lunch. On Wednesday some of the kids made turkey wraps with fresh-cooked tortillas (I love the uncooked flour tortillas from Costco that you can cook at home!) And on Thursday I made a creamy cheesy soup with potatoes, veggies and turkey, using the bone broth that I’d made over the weekend, as well as any veggies in the fridge that were needing to be used. Definitely a week much heavier on turkey than usual. But because we did a variety of different things with the turkey, no one was bored with it. In fact, my boys would happily eat turkey wraps many days of the week, if there happened to be turkey available.

cooking chicken to freeze

Another example of this is how I often handle ground beef. A time or two a month I will cook a LOT of ground beef all at once– maybe 8-10 pounds. I season and use it for tacos on night # 1. Because I cook so much, there’s lots leftover for other purposes. Some of what remains goes into spaghetti sauce another night. Another cup or two of the cooked meat will go into hamburger veggie chowder later in the week. A few cups goes into baggies in the freezer for easy use later. And usually I also remember to set aside a couple cups of the spaghetti sauce to go on pizza yet another day. That means I get at least 4-6 meals of meal from one meat-cooking session. It tremendously speeds my effort in the kitchen.

That’s all I’ve got for you this week in the frugality department, but I’d love to hear how your week went.



  1. I love how leftovers make life easier! 🙂

    We’ve been spending a lot lately with our move coming up, but I managed to think of a few things we did to spend a little less:

  2. I did something like this earlier this week. I started a soup broth and veggies, added chopped up left over angel hair pasta, crushed tomatoes, and cooked ground beef from the freezer. It was well liked and used up lots of things. Now I am starting to poach some chicken that I want to make into multiple meals including soup, but maybe more.

    Thanks for last week’s menu plan reminder! It helped me to be on track more for the past week. If I don’t have a plan we get too much take-out.