Oatmeal: the Essence of Frugal

Funding my Part-Time obsession one item at a time. As my regular readers know, I am determined to go part-time at work this year, which will require additional frugalities as I am committed to continuing with the music lessons for the kids and I still have 1.5 years of car payments.

Soooo– let me extol the benefits of Oatmeal: 1) it will lower your cholesterol  2) its high in fiber, and will keep you regular  3) folks with celiac disease can eat freely  4) is there a less expensive breakfast? even if you are not considering the health benefits… 5) there are as many ways to dress it up as there are people on the planet.

Let us consider the costs. My daughter’s oatmeal is pre-made packets from Aldi, $1.39 for a box of 10 packets, or 0.14 each.

oatmeal plus preservatives

My oatmeal ($1.99 for 30 servings of 1/2 cup each) and brown sugar ($1.49 for 76 servings of 1 Tablespoon each)

Aldi oats and brown sugar

And using these two very high-tech tools….

1/2 Cup and Tablespoon Measure Devices, Plastic Baggies

Let’s do the math. 1/2 cup oatmeal 0.07 + 1 Tablespoon brown sugar 0.02 + plastic baggie (reused average 5-10 times before failure) 0.05 = 0.105 per daily breakfast.

195 healthy-start-your-day-calories for 11 cents.

$1.10 worth of breakfast ( i.e. 10 days worth)


4 responses to “Oatmeal: the Essence of Frugal

  1. Those Quaker Oat boxes make good pinhole cameras, bongo drums and with a crystal and wire you can make a radio or a really hip birdhouse :>

  2. I love oatmeal as well. I’m guessing you dump your packet into a bowl with water and just microwave? May i ask how much water, and how long in the microwave for your oats? The instant oats I buy in packets-similar to your daughter’s oatmeal-only take a about 10 seconds in the microwave if I fill them from the hot water tap on the water maker at work, but I tried your method this morning, and I failed 🙂 I think I didn’t add enough water, and I didn’t microwave long enough.

    I love your New Years money savings plans by the way, you are an inspiration.

  3. Amy- I put the plastic baggie of oatmeal and brown sugar into a standard sized coffee mug (there are a bazillion of them in the work cabbinet) then I add water until it is about 1cm from the top of the cup–so I won’t make a mess when I stir it. This is maybe 6 oz water. Then I let it steep for a minute or so…I do not actually microwave it at all. If I had cold water I was adding then I might microwave for 60-90 seconds. I guess it depends how chunky you like your oats. 🙂

  4. Thank you! This works. I don’t know why I hadn’t thought of this before. I’ve tried a million times to make some for the week, but I can never get into a routine of it. This is easier, and I’ll be better for it, thank you

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