Cooking On A Budget: Budget-Friendly Snacks to Pack

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Budget-Friendly Snacks to Pack

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Affordable dessert snacks to pack for school lunches, have as an afternoon snack or to contribute to your schools bake sales!



The school year has begun and what you pack for the kids for lunches or after school snacks can sure beat up your grocery budget. These seven budget-friendly recipes should help you throughout the school year. They are easy enough that you could spend some time on the weekend making these with your kids. All of them are delicious and will be welcomed by kids of all ages.

For some people their grocery budgets are very lean and to purchase snacks off the grocery store shelves can be daunting because of the price. Instead of picking up treats that are laden with ingredients whose names most of us can't pronounce, I looked through the blog from the last couple of years to find these treats that are sure to please and definitely won't break the bank ~ and they are not loaded with chemicals.

How many times during the year are you approached by someone from the PTO or PTA to contribute to a school's bake sale, or your kids let you know the night before that they are supposed to contribute a dessert for the school fund raiser for band, choir or athletics? Most of us have been there at one time or another. When your time is short, and your budget is low, look to the following dessert snacks to get you out of a jam.



First up are these really Easy Apple Pie Beggars Purses. I used an inexpensive can of apple pie filling to make them and they are so tasty. For any kids that love apple pie, these homemade bundles will be a huge hit. I remember growing up wanting some of those little pies that were in the boxes in my lunch but my mother stayed away from packaged desserts and when I got older and tried them ~ one word: yuck. Make your own homemade pie crust recipe and use canned pie filling. It doesn't just have to be apple either; use cherry or blueberry for a great little treat.


Far and away one of the most delicious bars, these Blackberry Oatmeal Bars with Streusel Topping will also be a welcomed addition to any lunch you pack for the youngsters. I love blackberries but around here fresh blackberries are really expensive for the amount you get. Look to your job lot store for the best prices for Blackberry preserves and make these scrumptious treats.


What I have discovered is that boxed cake mixes are the bomb for making incredible dessert treats. I took a boxed cake mix and used it for the base for Easy Chocolate Date and Nut Cookie Bars. A consistency like a brownie, these are outrageously good and so inexpensive to make! The dates and nuts add incredible flavor and texture to these bars.


This next cookie, Chocolate Chunk Macadamia Nut Cookies may seem like they are expensive but if you read the post you'll find out just how inexpensive I made them for. Obviously getting the nuts on sale was a great help but the amount of cookies this dough makes are a lot! Plus if you can't do the macadamia nuts, replace those with one that you feel is more affordable on your budget. It was difficult for my husband and I to save a good amount of them as our son was coming down from Massachusetts for a visit and I wanted to have these for him and his fiance when they arrived. Trust me, they are out of this world delicious!



Since I had the Macadamia nuts already, I made these Coconut Macadamia Bars. They turned out to be some seriously good bars. If you love coconut and nuts these bars are easy to put together and I think it's one that kids will enjoy as well.

If you have ever made shortbread you know just how simple the recipe is to make. Very few ingredients in the shortbread and then I combined the shortbread with a jar (from the job lot store) of Danish Cherries, these Shortbread Cherry Bars were indeed another hit in our household.


This last recipe is for making Easy Homemade Turnovers. You can use any flavor you like - get your puff pastry on sale and you end up with a delicious, easy and inexpensive snack to pack in lunches or for after school.


All of these recipes are great for lunches or after school snacks, but they also are an inexpensive dessert that you can have when company comes or to bring for school bake sales.
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