Thursday, August 13, 2020

Homemade Buffalo Wild Wings

 When Buffalo Wild Wings opened here years ago, we frequented the place. Chicken is my preferred meat and we loved most of their sauces. Then the quality of the food went down and the prices went up, so we stopped going there. The straw that broke the camel's back was when I asked for some Ranch dressing on the side (I love to dip potato wedges in Ranch) and they charged us $1-2 for the tiny cup. That was it! No more BWW.

When I saw these bottles at Walmart a few weeks ago, I just had to have some. After all, Caribbean Jerk is the one I always ordered at BWW. So I marinaded the chicken tenders (that I got at Sams) in the sauce overnight, then baked it in the oven. 25 Minutes later, we had to most delicious, juiciest chicken tenders ever. That tenders turned out to be a blessing in disguise, because it cooks so fast. That did it for me. This sauce is now one of the items I have to

So this is what we did for dinner that night. Tenders, baked potato, baked beans, carrot/pineapple salad. It was so good that DH said he's gonna try the sauce on fish too. A week later, I cooked double the amount of tenders and made chicken sandwiches for ourselves with Romaine salad (I don't buy lettuce, cause it would just go to waste here), roasted red peppers, pineapple slices. We had that with potato salad. A sandwich like this would set you back at least $10 at BWW or other restaurants and you get no sides with it. So how much did it cost us?

Package of non GMO chicken at Sams (around 5 lbs) $10-12 (this is packaged in 4 individual bags.

Let's say I used half the chicken. That would give us a price of $5-6 (you only need 2 tenders per bun). I'm using the $6 price

8ct Buns $2.50

BWW Sauce $2.96

Can pineapple slices $0.92

Jar Roasted red peppers $1.98

Bag salad $2.98

Total cost to for 8 sandwiches = $17.34 or $2.17 per sandwich.

The best part is that we're getting good non GMO chicken. You can't find that in a restaurant, unless you pay a ridiculous price for it. 

Today we made chicken wraps with the leftover tenders for lunch. I now just freeze the leftover cooked chicken and nuke it when we need some. Soooo good!

Tonight I'm gonna try to make Taco Bell crunchwrap supreme.

I'm gonna try to make all kinds of restaurant foods at home. We're sick of getting carry out. Not only is it safer & cheaper to make our own, but it tastes way better too.

Warning: If you don't like Hot or Spicy food, stay away from these sauces. 

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

This week's stockpiling highlights

I'm only posting some stockpiling highlights, as I'm recovering from a cold and didn't have the energy to set everything up for pictures. I spent the better part of the weekend in bed and didn't even get the paper on Sunday. So bummed, because I wanted those BOGOF Dial Qs. So off to Walmart I went on Monday, because I know they still sell the Sunday paper on Mondays. I first stopped at Dollar Tree next door. They had papers, but no inserts. ugh.

While at Walmart, I decided to just do grocery shopping on the fly. As I walked into the store, I saw a man with what looked like disinfecting wipes in his cart. It was under other groceries and I could just make out the top part. So I hightailed it to the cleaning section and found empty shelves :( I'm guessing I was wrong, because I didn't see anyone else with wipes). I did go to the Beauty section though to see if they had any Wet Ones. I had a 'be still my heart' moment when I spotted these babies. It's only the 20ct packs, but I was so very happy to see these again (I forgot to check RA last week). So I took 2 packs and placed it in my cart. Then I thought 'there's no limit', so I went back and got another I do still have 2 tubs of Wet Ones (I always keep these in my car for when I go thrifting or to yard sales), but decided to get more since we don't know how long shortages will last. 

I also bought 2 more cooking spray. I don't know why I bought more. I had that exact same thought when I bought Softsoap refills last year. The refills were on sale for $1.99, so I bought 3, used $5 points and paid $1.06 for 3 bottles. I remember thinking 'why on earth am I buying more soap when we still have a new refill bottle at home (I know that one bottle lasts us a year).... and then Covid happened. So I'm just trusting my instincts on this. 

Walmart had zero canned peas. Yikes. I've been shopping at a different Walmart (a few miles further from home), because DH said that our local Walmart is near a hotspot area (this was when the pandemic started). But since I was out that way, I decided to just stop there. I also couldn't find any molasses. I remembered that I need molasses for my ginger(bread) cookies. I'll have to check Meijer. I did find more of those Libby's pumpkin pie filling cans, so picked up another one. No regular canned pumpkin though.

Still no yeast to be found at any Walmarts, but DH found some at Aldi. I'm thankful that we have a good yeast supply now. 

If you love baking over the holidays, then I'll advise you to stock up now. It's scary to see how empty shelves are. What if there's another lockdown? Things will look even worse then. 

I was very happy to see store brand chickpeas. I got 6 cans, but when I got to checkout I noticed that one was dented, so I left it behind. 

I also stopped at the produce market. As I walked into the store, I saw these blueberry boxes for $2! Whoo-hoo! I'm a berry girl, but blueberries are my absolute favorite. DH knows to bring blueberries when he finds it at a good price. It doesn't matter if we already have blueberries at home. He knows I love this stuff. There were 8 x 18 oz containers per box (DH already took one package to eat when I got home). I really wanted another box, but the rest were in poor shape. 

Let me tell you that cleaning these suckers is no small task. Well separating the good from the bad is the hard part. I got that done yesterday. I filled 2 gallon size bags and froze them. So happy to have some berries for winter. I love them in smoothies.

I also bought a huge bag of red peppers for $8.xx. There were 15 peppers in the bag. Another favorite of ours. Today I'll clean, dice and freeze those.

I overspent our weekly budget by $10, but that always happens when I go to the produce market. I go every 3-4 weeks and fill my cart.

I still need to head to Meijer & CVS for Dial deals. Meijer has the spend $12 get $3 discount again, so I'll pick up bar soap. I'll get b/w at CVS, since the price is better than Softsoap.

I'm so glad I did all the shopping and cooking on Monday, because I couldn't keep my eyes open yesterday. I needed to run some errands and just plopped down on the couch when I got home. Thankfully I'm feeling better today, so I can get some stuff done. 

Thursday, August 6, 2020

This week's Walmart stockpiling trip

Well so much for my $20-30 a week stockpiling. Reading about European countries shutting down again, gives me more of a sense of urgency to get our stockpiling completely done. 

Here's what I got at Walmart.

3 x Bush's baked beans $5.94
2 x Organic chickpeas 1.84
3 x Rotel 3.94
5 x Peas 2.20
3 x Black beans 1.74
4 x Mixed vegetables 2.32
5 x Green Beans 2.20
3 x Beef broth 1.50
4 x Tomato paste 1.68
4 x Mushrooms 2.28
3 x Pineapple 2.76
1 x Peaches 0.96
1 x Salsa 2.98
1 x Pesto 3.98
1 x Large oatmeal 2.46
2 x Whole wheat pasta 2.56
3 x 2pk Boxed potatoes 6.75
2 x 1lb Lentils 1.96
Total $50.05

We normally eat mainly fresh and some frozen produce, but I've decided to get canned because we don't know how bad things will get this winter. That's why I've decided to add mixed vegetables, canned mushrooms and box potatoes.I'm not really crazy about box potatoes, but I'll eat it if fresh isn't available. This pandemic has taught us to set our pickiness aside and make the most of what we have available.

I've been buying bigger jars of salsa & pesto, because it costs less than buying 2 smaller jars. 

I won't be buying more oatmeal, because we still have 2 large Quaker canisters in the pantry. We mainly eat cereal and oatmeal is mostly used for baking.

I'm hoping that Meijer will have a good Prego pasta sauce sale again, because I'm running low. I can't see myself paying $2 a jar, when I know that they usually run a 99c (or was it 75c) sale. I normally buy enough sauce for a year. I also need to add lasagna to my stockpile list.

I wanted more brown rice, but they didn't have any 2 lb bags. These cost less than buying the 1 lb bags. It's not a problem, because I already have 14 lbs stockpiled. In my culture, we eat a lot of rice, so I have to keep that on hand.

DH has been picking up dried pinto beans and vinegar at Aldi every week. We make our own refried beans. We no longer enjoy canned refried beans, since we started making our own. There's such a huge difference in taste and we know exactly what ingredients are in it. 

Do you make any of your own food items, instead of buying it? Please feel free to share your recipe(s)

We're in decent shape now. Not much more I need to stockpile. I have a number in my head for select canned goods. We love peas & baked beans, so those are 2 things we need lots of. Boy I'll be glad when this stockpiling business is done. It's stressful having to plan for it, but it will give me peace of mind knowing that we're well provided for. 

Sunday, August 2, 2020

It's laundry week at WAGS

Wags has an awesome sale on Purex & Snuggle this week. Buy 2 @ $2.99 get $4 BR points. This makes each item 99c each. 

Even better if you have points to pay with. If you don't have any points, just pay for your first transaction and then roll your points into the next transaction. Rinse & repeat.

The best part though is that there are NO limits. I'm not buying anymore this week, because I already have 25 bottles of detergent in my stockpile (please don't judge. I use detergent for business purposes too). I'll stock up on Snuggle liquid if I can find it though. It's my favorite fabric softener.

I hit up 3 stores (did my shopping in 40 minutes, since the stores are all near my home) 

Store 1

4 x Purex $11.96
4 x Snuggle softener 11.96
Less Snuggle q (1.00)
Less BR Points (20.00)
Tax 1.44
OOP $4.36

Earn $16 BR Points. 

Store 2

4 x Purex 11.96
4 x Snuggle dryer sheets 11.96
Less BR Points (20.00)
Tax 1.44
OOP $5.36

Earn $16 BR Points 

Store 3

8 x Purex $23.92
Less BR Points (20.00)
Tax 1.44
OOP $5.36

Earn $16 BR Points 

I only had 1 Snuggle q left from the last sale. The Q expires today, that's why I decided to shop today.

Store 2 only had Snuggle sheets. I would've preferred the liquid.

Store 3. Someone had cleared the shelves of all things Snuggle....grrrr

I started out with $52 Points and ended with $40 Points. So I spent down $12 Points

Total OOP $15.08 for 24 items. That makes it $0.63 each

Retail value : $151.76

I've never seen the Snuggle this cheap and haven't seen 99c detergent since the pandemic started, so get yours while you can.

Thursday, July 30, 2020

Quick CVS trip

Nothing really tickled my fancy in this week's CVS ad, but I wanted to use my $7 Loreal moisturiser DQ that expired today.  The ad says that a mystery Loreal CRT would print, but it turned out to be for cosmetics, not facial care. I sure wish that CVS would send me an any Loreal moisturiser DQ, because I prefer the Revitalift over this. However, I won't say no to free moisturiser. I only had one PG insert to work with, that's why I didn't use 3 Gillette qs. Turns out I didn't need it after all. 

1 x Loreal age perfect moisturiser $19.49
2 x Loreal makeup remover wipes 11.98
2 x Venus razors 15.98
1 x Gillette razors 7.99
Less Venus Q (4.00)
Less Gillette Q (4.00)
Less $3 off Gillette razor CRT (3.00)
Less 5/20 Shave DQ (5.00)
Less Loreal DQ (7.00)
Less 5/22 facial care DQ (5.00)
Less EBs (27.44)
Tax 1.59
OOP $1.59

Earned $18 EB ($10 Loreal, $8 Gillette/Venus) and should get $3 Beauty. 

I ended up with a $6 Beauty EB from last week (not $3 as I thought). I used $27.50 EBs, but the register adjusted it by 6c, because my OOP (before tax) was $0.

OOP $1.59
Coupons used : $28.00
Rewards used : $27.50
Retail value : $65.50

I'm so excited to see that my CVS now has self checkout. I'm gonna try it next time I shop. I love self checkout, because I have complete control over my transaction. I can see which coupons have deducted (without keeping a cashier waiting) and also see if I need to add a filler item or another EB.

I'm done with shopping for this week.

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

WAGS fun & another big stockpile trip

I know, I know. I said that I'm only gonna spend about $20-30 per week on groceries, but after visiting the stores this weekend, I decided to do another big stock up. I started reorganizing my stockpile last week (it's still a work in progress) & have a better idea of what I still needed. I apologize for the lack of pics, but by the time I've unpacked and wiped down everything, I'm too tired to still think of pics.

When I was out on Sunday, I stopped at Meijer to get newspapers & blueberries. The store didn't have the main paper & the other paper only had the SS insert. Grrr. I did get my blueberries & 4 more strips of yeast. I noticed that they had limits on peanut butter and canned pumpkin was non-existent. 

Then I went to another Meijer and they had the main paper. Except, no PG insert. Ugh. It's a mystery as to why we never got PG inserts this week. Thankfully I got a PG insert in the mail. Same story with PB & pumpkin and their yeast was limit 1, so I grabbed one strip. No use passing it up.

On Monday I headed to Walmart for a few produce items and eggs. I decided to make a list of things to stockpile, because shortages seem to be getting worse every week. I keep seeing more items added to the shortage list - not good. I normally buy 1 or 2 cans of baked beans, but decided to be bold and just grab 4. I figured if I keep buying 1 at a time, I'm gonna end up seeing beans shortages at some stage too. We love our Busch's baked beans. 

The canned goods aisle was half empty. This was a shock to me. I've switched my shopping day from Sunday to Monday, to give them time to restock the shelves. Usually they're pretty well stocked, so I was shocked to see so little goods. I grabbed what was on my list. Their store brand chickpeas (another favorite of ours) has been OOS for almost a month, so I picked up some of their store brand organic ones. It's actually still a few cents less than the regular name brand chickpeas. So organic wins the day.

The baking aisle had no yeast and I searched high and low for pumpkin. I eventually found it on a bottom shelf at the end of the aisle. There wasn't much, but I grabbed 3 cans and also a ready made pumpkin pie mix. Just add eggs and evaporate milk. I tried making a pumpkin pie once and it was a flop (I guess it didn't bake long enough, because the filling was still loose), so I've been buying pies ever since DMIL passed away (she used to bake our pies). Now I'm a good baker, so I was disappointed when my pie flopped. I'm not taking chances this year. If Sams doesn't have pumpkin pie, then I at least have the filling all ready in a can. Easy

I also found store brand EVOO cooking spray. I bought 3 cans. I wasn't out, but I figured I'd get some more. I opened a 2pk Pam spray last week, so we're still in good shape

Now I'm basically stocked up on Thanksgiving food. We don't care for cranberry sauce or even turkey and stuffing (I've never liked stuffing). So we get seafood and other meat (for me) and add all the other sides. The most important part of the meal (for me) is the pumpkin

I cashed out for another $25 Walmart gc on Ibotta. Then I headed to Sams with $75 gcs. They had lots of t/p & p/t, but no Dunkin Donuts coffee, DS's juice was out (I got the last one and the shelf space has been filled with a different brand). I bought another pack of store brand tissues. I wanted to get 2, because I want to donate one. However, there were only 4 packs on the shelf and I didn't want to deprive someone else of getting some. I can always buy another pack next time.  I also got a 2pk PB (we don't like any other brand). These jars are huge and we still have one unopened jar in the pantry.

They were once again out of my non GMO chicken breast. There were only thigh meat & tenders, so I got 2 packs of tenders. 

I stocked up on the rest of my baking supplies - baking powder, vanilla extract, raisins and I found more cooking spray. Turns out the Sams brand EVOO spray cost more than Walmart. Huh? Isn't Sams supposed to be cheaper, since we're paying for a membership? I did buy a pack, but will pick some up at Walmart again. At Walmart I paid 26c/oz and the Pam Spray at Sams costs 29c/oz. I know that most people will just buy Pam, because the bottles are bigger (12 oz vs 7 oz store brand). I always calculate the unit cost to see which is the better price. I use the spray for cooking & baking. 

I feel a whole lot better about my stockpile now. I can finally say that we're in good shape. Now I can really focus on that $20-30 per week stockpiling, because I just need to fill in the gaps. The problem I have is not knowing how long shortages will last or whether Covid will be worse or better during winter. 

So DH has started with the stockpiling crap again. He's not complaining per se, but making comments about it. Looks like he hasn't learned from the pandemic after all. He's been bragging about how Aldi's fully stocked. I told him it's because most people shop at the big grocery stores (especially since Aldi doesn't carry half the stuff that they do). Our Meijer is like a super Walmart. It has everything under the sun. Actually Meijer is better than Walmart, because it carries a much larger variety of items and brands. We have all stores right on our doorstep, so why would people go to Aldi, except to fill in the gaps. Anyhoo, after some back & forth with him, I told him to not listen to me. That we can take up this conversation again in a few months (boy is he gonna regret Immediately after the conversation, he went into the pantry to get a bottle of his favorite juice....smdh. I told him to leave the juice alone and go buy some at, since he's so anti stockpiling (hoarding he calls it. As if we don't use any of the stuff). So I've decided to teach him a lesson. I know that Aldi doesn't carry this juice. It's the only thing he'll drink, because of the low sugar. I've been picking up a few bottles at Dollar Tree every week. Well, I'm just not gonna buy anymore. He drinks at least 2 bottles per week. So when it's gone, he can go see if his beloved Aldi has (we all know he's not gonna find Then he can do the running around to find his favorite juice (better hope things don't get worse here again, cause flu season will be here too). No, I'm not being mean. Sometimes you just have to teach them a lesson, so that they can truly appreciate what you do.

I wasn't planning on going to WAGS this week, but read about the inexpensive Scott p/t deal. 

Trans 1 (DH account)

2 x Scott p/t $10.00
3 x Robitussin 6.57
1 x Kit Kat 0.99
Less Scott DQ (2.00)
Less Scott IVC (2.50)
Less Robitussin IVC (6.57)
Less BR Points (5.00)
Tax 0.99
OOP $2.48

Earned $5 BR Points. 

DH had a earn $5 BR WYS $1 DQ. I added the candy, because I knew that my total would be 50c after using BR to pay.

The Robitussin is clearanced to $2.19 (check your stores). There's a $3 IVC. The cashier told me that I cannot use the q, because it's higher than the cost of the item. She told me that she'll try the kids one (which I knew wouldn't attach, because it's for a 2pk). I very nicely asked her to just try scanning the $3 one, so she did & voila, it deducted the full value off each item. All the while I was thinking 'girl please, I know that q works. I've got the inside scoop'

To save yourself the same headache, go clip the IVC to your card. I should've done that instead, but didn't check our accounts first. The q will automatically deduct and you'll just have to pay tax on the medicine. 

Trans 2 (my account)

2 x Scott p/t $10.00
Less Scott DQ (2.00)
Less IVC (2.50)
Less BR Points (5.00)
Tax 0.60
OOP $1.10

I don't use much p/t, but am saving this in case DH ever runs out....shhhhh (I didn't tell him

That's been my shopping week. I feel like this stockpiling has been consuming my life. I'm happy to basically be done with it. All I need to do is make a CVS run. I don't even have a game plan yet, except for the Loreal moisturizer deal.

Friday, July 24, 2020

Ibotta double dip bonus

Last week Ibotta had 2 bonus deals that overlapped. I wasn't planning on going shopping, but after reading about Sluggy's purchase I decided to take my behind to Walmart

1 x Sweet Earth Burrito $2.78
1 x Ritz chips 2.57
1 x OEP cheese 2.68
1 x Cracker barrel cheese block 3.18
1 x Butterfinger 0.88
1 x Cottage cheese 2.08
1 x Kind nut clusters 3.96
1 x Laughing cow cheese wedges 2.87
1 x Feta cheese 3.96
1 x Chobani 4pk 3.96
2 x Oui yogurts 2.68
2 x Stayfree 5.56
Tax 0.33
OOP $37.49

Earned $21.08 Ibotta (this includes the $5 Bonus & 50c July bonus)

The nut clusters and Oui were all free after rebate, so I bought the max amount of 2 Oui.

Dollar Tree

1 x Sour Patch pops $1.00
Earned 0.75 Ibotta

The above items counted towards both the $5 & $10 bonuses. However, I still needed 2 items to complete the $10 one.


2 x Pringles $2.13 (this was my OOP at WAGS on Monday)

2 x Bic Razors $10.18
Less 2 Bic Qs (6.00)
Tax : 0.62
OOP $4.80

This was the cluster transaction, so I'm just giving you the totals as if it was a perfect transaction. I know it cost me less, but I'm not in the mood for crazy WAGS

Earned $16.30 ($6 Bic, $0.30 Pringles, $10 bonus)

Total OOP :  $45.42
Total earned : $38.13
Total cost after rewards : $7.29
Total items purchased : 19

There's lots of dairy, but we don't mind. It's our favorite.

On another note. I learned that Aldi carries Gouda cheese, so off I went to get Gouda slices and shreds, because my Sams no longer carries it. What a disappointment that cheese was. I grew up eating Gouda. It was as common as cheddar to me, so I was happy to see it finally become popular here. I'll have to check other Sams locations to see if I can find it there.

I realised that the $4 RR the cashier gave back to me, expires tomorrow. So while we were out today, I decided to stop at a WAGS. Boy I'm a real sucker for I used it on DH's account, since RRs aren't account specific

2 x Tide $9.98
1 x Tide pods 4.99
5 x Oral b t/b $5.00
1 x Oral b t/b 3.99
3 x Oral b t/b B2G1F 0.00
Less Tide DQ (2.00)
Less Oral B DQ (7.00)
Less RR (4.00)
Tax 1.44
OOP $10.96

No Tide RR printed, so the manager added $5 points to DH's account. Then as I left, I saw that his Pods DQ didn't deduct. Contacted CS when I got home and they added $2 points. DH is now the proud owner of $7 points and he doesn't even know

My plan was to buy 10 of the $1 t/brushes, so the $7 could attach. However, the store only had 9, so I grabbed the $3.99 one instead.

Not too bad a trip, since that $4 RR was free and DH had zero points to begin with.

I don't know what is going on at WAGS. I've been to several different locations and only 2 of them were able to print RRs. Something strange is going on. I'm guessing it's a Catalina problem, because the machines are all turned on, but not printing anything.

I don't see anything good at WAGS next week, so I'm hoping to take a break. I'll hit up CVS and check what's good at RA.

Hope you all enjoy the rest of your weekend.

Homemade Buffalo Wild Wings

 When Buffalo Wild Wings opened here years ago, we frequented the place. Chicken is my preferred meat and we loved most of their sauces. The...