Making the Most of Produce Deals

Recently at my local supermarket I discovered a shopping cart filled with produce at super duper deals!  The fruits and vegetables were still perfectly nutritious, but they had a few blemishes.  Plus a nearly everything in the basket was organic.  But with just three of us (and one who only eats a little), bringing home all that produce requires a major plan.  I thought you might be interested in what I managed to accomplish in just a couple of hours after getting everyone fed and the baby boy to bed.

purees

Pureed yellow squash in the cubes, pureed zucchini (and 1 yellow squash) in breast milk storage bags — seriously, these are perfect!

Here’s what I bought: 7 medium to large zucchini, 1 medium head of cauliflower, 3 yellow squash (all for <$5)

One of my favorite things to do is find places to sneak vegetables into my boys’ meals.  I do this by adding shredded or pureed veggies to bread, muffins, pancakes, oatmeal, meatballs, sauces, soups, and pretty much anywhere else I can think of.  In order to make that super easy anytime during the week, I puree and portion veggies when I find these kinds of awesome deals, then freeze them for later.

In this case, I did just that with five of the zucchini, the whole head of cauliflower, and the yellow squash.  I portioned most of the zucchini in 1/2 cup, plus one 1-cup bag (which I’ll use for soup later).  The cauliflower was portioned in one 1/2 cup bag, plus two 1-cup portions (which I’ll add to mashed potatoes!).  Finally, the yellow squash I froze as ice cubes, since I think it will be perfect in oatmeal for my little guy for breakfast.

Zucchini Bread

Perfect mini-loaves of zucchini bread. Some to eat and some to give.

We also really enjoy homemade whole wheat zucchini bread.  The great thing about zucchini when added to bread is that it keeps it super moist without a lot of added fat.  But since there are only three of us, we have a hard time getting all the way through a loaf before it goes bad!  To solve this, I usually make muffins or mini-loaves.  The fun of mini-loaves is that they make lovely gifts too.  Oh, AND they freeze beautifully.  So with that in mind, I made four lovely little loves.

In just about two hours, I think I had great success with my produce deals.  What do you think?  How do you handle an abundance of produce before it goes bad at your house?

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