Los Angeles is the epicenter for cheap food finds. And, while not all 99 cent or dollar stores are created equal, this Chintzy Cuisineste knows were to get the goods for the most economical deals.
Some of my cheap$kate finds are healthy and some are not - that's what happens when you cruise the aisles. What you find today may not be there tomorrow, so I have learned to get it while you can.
This year I've found everything from grass-fed cow yogurt to Star Wars themed SpaghettiOs.
I tried the delish yogurt but only took a photo of the SpaghettiOs - I'm no fool.
Click on any photo to see larger.
Freeze-dried fruit, like grapes and pear, are "in" this year. There is not much to them really - they are all air and lightness, with none of the heft and concentrated sweetness that regular dried fruit carries. I can't say I'm a big fan....yet.
This year my local Dollar Tree store has really kicked it up a few notches. While the selection is no where near what my fave budget 99c only Stores stock, they are getting better.
Single servings of frozen, seafood, pork, beef and poultry are well represented.
I always discover fantastic eatable finds at my local 99c only Stores. Again, if you see it today, it may not be there tomorrow, so I advise impulsive purchasing.
Click on any photos to see larger.
Not every 99c only Store sells beer and wine, but I have found the ones that do, and boy do they ever! Twelve to sixteen ounce bottles or cans of Pumpkin Ale, Thai lager or The Hobbit Smaug Stout, anyone?
Deli meats make frequent appearances, everything from sliced Roast Beef to Blackened Chicken Breast. Those are the kind of finds that vanish from the store shelves very quickly.
I picked up a couple of containers of Oyster Mushrooms last week, to simply saute in butter.
Living in Louisiana during my high school daze, the Southern product brand of Zatarain's was everywhere to be found -- and here in Los Angeles it's a great treat to get it at such cheap prices.
So major props to the 99c only Store and Dollar Tree for keeping my stockings stuffed all through the new year! And be sure to check back next week for my Top 9 Recipes of 2016.