Seasonal Savings: What’s in Season for April

Even though I am a huge fan of coupons, I realize that it’s not for everyone—and  that it shouldn’t be your only source of reducing your grocery budget.  Back in June 2009, I wrote up a series called 31 Ways to Save On Your Grocery Budget (without coupons) and one of the things that I should have stressed even more then was to try to work things that are in season into your weekly menu plan.

Throughout the year, there are always certain fruits and vegetables that are in season at various times. And if you watch closely, you’ll see that those items will drop in price at the stores since they tend to be more abundant in supply. I wanted a source to send you to that would help you watch which items might be in season and I was very happy to find one on Epicurious that is a US Map that will tell you items not only by state, but also by month. It might be one that you’ll want to bookmark and check at the beginning of the month if you aren’t familiar with the seasonal schedule.

Not only is it great to work those items into your menu plan but they are great items to consider buying more of, if you have any wiggle room left in your grocery budget, so that you can Freeze/Can them.

I’m still learning which foods freeze well and how to can/preserve foods myself. I just try to learn a little bit more each year so I don’t get overwhelmed. Here are a few good resources to check out from your local library, though:

How to Freeze: Everything You Need to Know About Freezing – This one breaks out foods to where you can just flip to the item and read up on how to preserve it.

The Big Book of Preserving the Harvest: 150 Recipes for Freezing, Canning, Drying and Pickling Fruits and Vegetables – This one is a great resource because it covers so many methods of food preservation.

Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving and Ball Blue Book Guide to Preserving – If you find that you like the last one, it often comes free in canning/preserving kits.

Simply in Season Expanded Edition (World Community Cookbook) – This one is more of a recipe book for ideas on how to use those items that are in season.

You can check the map for your local area, but here’s what they project for being in season in April for Illinois:

Asparagus, Broccoli, Cabbage, Lettuce, Onions, Peas and Spinach.

I already took advantage of a hot sale on Asparagus at my local grocery store that was sold in a big bunch. We never would have finished it– but I blanched them, chilled them in ice water, let them dry and then threw them in a freezer bag so I can add them to a pasta dish, casserole or stir fry later. I reduced wasting food and I saved myself money down the road. And get this—I was able to do most of this process while I was waiting for some pasta to cook. Never underestimate the savings that can come from multi-tasking. :)

Another great thing you can do is to take any  raw/uncooked vegetables that you have each night that are leftover from your recipes ( freeze them according to the proper directions) and  save them in one container for a stir fry or soup later on.

I’ll share the seasonal items to watch for again next month. I’m hoping this will help you stretch your grocery money a little further.

Thank you for stopping by Coupon Geek! I value my readers and their advice, tips and comments. Please remember that Coupon Geek is a positive, family-friendly and upbeat site when leaving your comments.

Comments

  1. Valerie Z says

    This is an awesome series. I’ve been so worried about canning and preserving from my garden, I just didn’t even think about the seasonal stuff in stores. Thank you!

  2. LA says

    Thanks for the info and the links! This not only saved me time & money but will help me feed my family more healthy. I appreciate you taking time to share.

  3. coupongeek says

    You are so welcome, LA.

    Thank you for taking time to comment. It helps me keep track of what postings my readers like and that I should do more of.

    Blessings to you!
    Jaycie

  4. coupongeek says

    You’re welcome, Stacey!

    Just learning this simple trick and picking up some food preservation tips has helped me save so much—and it keeps healthier/fresher foods on our table–which makes it so worth it!

    Blessings to you!
    Jaycie

  5. coupongeek says

    Thank you so much Valerie! That makes me so happy to hear that you enjoyed it!

    The thing I’ve picked up trying to teach myself about canning and preserving is to just do a little at a time. Otherwise it gets overwhelming. I try to just learn one new thing every month or two as far as freezing/canning/drying foods. I figure eventually I’ll learn them all. :)

  6. Leigh says

    I love Simply in Season (and it’s cousin cookbook More with Less). It is my go to book for when our produce box delivery has something new in it.

  7. coupongeek says

    LOL…I did the same thing when I signed up for our CSA last year. I’d get something in the box and go hmmmm…..what can I make with this….and then check the book. :)

    Blessings to you!
    Jaycie

  8. says

    Awesome awesome awesome! I never know what is in season in Texas, being a native Michigander and all. Thanks for finding this resource and sharing it with us ;)

  9. coupongeek says

    Hiya Lori! :) You are so lucky to have such a longer more abundant season down there! (Though if I had to move there, I think I’d go in shock over how hot it is all the time. What would I do without the Chicago wind freezing me out? LOL)

    Are you missing the great Michigan apples yet? Sometimes the Michigan farmers will come to our Chicago area Farmer’s Markets and their apples are AMAZING. Though I’ve never had a Texas apple to compare it to….

    So glad you’ll find use of it. I’m loving the idea of clicking on it each month, too.

    Blessings to you!
    Jaycie

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