Frugal Bulk Food Storage

Frugal Bulk Food Storage Ideas

Hey all,


Okay, so we’ve been trying to pinch some pennies around the ol’ TeamPerk clubhouse. I may or may not have recently totaled our car, and the new one hit the savings account pretty hard. Ugh.

So, we’re tightening the belt on the budget…which was already pretty darn tight!

One way we’ve found to do so is to start buying a lot of out “staples” in bulk. (Usually on red-eye trips to Winco to avoid the horrible crowds…)

The only problem for me, as the cook, was that I ended up with a dozen plastic bags of stuff (rice, oatmeal, couscous, beans, etc.,) all piled together on a shelf.

NOT a fan!

Luckily, I also shop at Costco for a few items, milk being one of them. Now, to be honest, I hate the new milk containers when it comes to pouring milk. And usually end up grumbling as I wipe up spills at least half the time.

However, I also discovered that those new milk jugs happen to fit perfectly on the shelf that I keep the bulk foods on…

The following recycle project was born!

DIY Bulk Food Storage



Wash the empty jug with soap and water. Allow it to air dry for a couple of days. (Btw, the label is very easy to remove when the jug is full of hot water.)



Take the “recipe card” (these are usually in a rack on each bulk food aisle) and tape it securely to the front of the jug. I used packing tape and covered the whole label. That way it remains water, stain, and wear proof.


As an added bonus, I’ve found that it’s REALLY easy to pour the contents into a measuring cup! (As demonstrated here by my lovely assistant.)


That’s it!

All my bulk foods can be stacked side by side for easy access, and easily refilled. If you wanted to be REALLY picky, you could fill the container a cup at a time and make hash-marks on the side. That way, you’ll know how much you’re using on a weekly/monthly basis.

Also, I’ve got my recipe right there with the food and never have to go find it!

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle!

Plus, given the truckloads of milk my daughter goes through, I always have a ready supply. And a little more room in the recycle bin each week is nice, too.

NOTE: If you need smaller containers and need to optimize your space, the plastic ½ gallon milk containers are shaped just like this and take up a lot less room.

Now, if I can just figure out how to sell a totaled car…

~Chef P

PS ~ For more great tips on bulk foods, check out my post: “Confessions of a Grocery Ninja“, and my Oregonian article on shopping the bulk foods aisles!

Frugal Fine Cooking