The trick to creating food from scratch is finding good recipes. Sometimes simple recipes with few ingredients are better than more complicated ones with lots of ingredients.  Browse recipes sites or look through recipe books to discover new recipes and find a dish that inspires you.  A recipe will often give a sense of how long it will take to prepare - often this helps to determine how complicated the recipe is.

If you would like hands-on experience and expert advice, volunteer at Maurita’s Kitchen to learn about frugal, nutritious cooking.

Recipe Sources:

Canadian Living has a whole range of practical recipes that are clearly laid out with helpful tips for both beginners and experienced cooks. Search through their recipe index for ideas or check out their weekly menu planning options.  See the link below for the Canadian Living website.  You can also find back issues of the magazine in thrift shops or used book stores.

More with Less, Expanding the Table and Simply in Season are three cookbooks that are full of easy to make basic recipes.  They are specially created to include recipes that feature affordable ingredients while also focusing on healthy, balanced diets.  Each book has a different focus - More with Less has a introduction that talks through the concepts of changing eating habits; Expanding the Table is full of multicultural recipes; Simply in Season focuses on using ingredients as they are in season in southwestern Ontario. 
These books are available for purchase from the Queen Street Commons Cafe.

Other online sources:  There are many online recipes sites from recipe databases to personal blogs.  There are some links below to helpful recipe sites but there are lots more available - Google "recipes" and browse through the sites that come up.  Some of these sites have an option to join as a member, but there are lots of resources available for free.
If you have a specific dish or menu in mind, a specific Google search will often help you to find a recipe that you like the best. 


Expanding your cooking habits can go beyond meals, you can start processing your own foods such as yogurt, hummus, pasta sauce, salad dressing, hot sauce and more. Once you get going you realize that you can make many of the processed foods you used to buy in the store for a fraction of the price.

Here are three ways to make yogurt quite easily with a heating pad, an insulated cooler or simply a soup pot and towels.

For other foods such as the ones listed above and others a simple online search will yield more than enough information to get you producing all sorts of great processed foods.

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