Rising Prices Means Shopping Smarter

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Everyone has felt the pinch at the grocery store recently with rising prices. When I notice prices going up at the store, then it is time to be more creative when I am shopping. Personally, I have never been good at using coupons but if that is your thing, go for it and good luck. However, I tend to use a variety of other methods that I want to share with you. Use one or all of them and hopefully it will help you shop smarter and eat cheaper. First of all, the prices have continued to increase at the fast foods and restaurants so my first tip is the hardest. Stop wasting your money eating out all of the time. I am getting less food on my plate and the price for a combo at fast-food places has jumped up and it is definitely not good for my health. If the produce you want is not in season then I recommend canned or frozen produce because it was picked at its’ peak freshness and the prices don’t typically vary. This will also help reduce the amount of food waste because the canned and frozen last longer for those of you that always forget about your food or don’t use it before it spoils.

When shopping at the grocery store, it is always good to have a plan in order to reduce costs and make the healthiest decisions. Join us for a FREE “Cooking Matters At The Store” pop-up tour program on Monday, February 26th, 2024 at 10:45 a.m. at the Granville County Senior Center in Oxford.

Below is a delicious family-favorite recipe from the Partnership for Food Safety Education. For more information on our Food for Thought programs, activities and recipes, check us out online.

One Pan Pizza Pasta

From FightBac.org – serves 4

  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 8 oz Italian chicken sausage, casing removed
  • ½ cup turkey pepperoni
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¾ tsp dried oregano
  • ¾ tsp dried basil
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ¼ tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1 (15oz) can no-salt-added tomato sauce
  • 1 ½ cups water
  • 8 oz rotini or ziti pasta
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 2 Tbsp fresh basil, chopped

In a large oven-proof skillet over medium-high heat, add the Italian chicken sausage, breaking it up into pieces. Cook until browned and cook until it reaches 165 °F on a digital food thermometer, about 5 minutes. Drain excess fat. Stir in ¼ cup of pepperoni and cook for 1 minute. Wash hands with soap and water after handling pepperoni. Preheat oven to broil. To the skillet, stir in the salt, oregano, basil, garlic powder and red pepper flakes. Allow to cook for 30 seconds. Add tomato sauce, water, and pasta. Stir well to combine. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer until pasta is cooked, about 12 to 14 minutes. Remove from the heat and top with shredded mozzarella and remaining ¼ cup of pepperoni. Place under the broiler and cook until melted and golden brown, about 2 minutes. Garnish with fresh basil and serve immediately.