My name is Ashley McLaughlin and this is my blog, Edible Perspective. To learn more about my journey head on over to my about + FAQ pages. I'm thrilled that you stopped by. Enjoy!


For the latest details be sure to check my book page!  


Baked Doughnuts For Everyone: From Sweet to Savory to Everything in Between, 101 Delicious Recipes, All Gluten-Free


« the day to day | part II | Main | smoky stuffed peppers »

double giveaway

What’s better than one giveaway with one cool prize?

One giveaway with two cool prizes.


First up, this super fun cookbook, Frugally Delicious.  Many months ago, one of the creators of this book asked if I would be interested in contributing a recipe.  Of course! 


You will find my recipe for broccoli cheddar soup along with recipes from 55 food bloggers in total.  It has a simple, clean, and creative design and shows you that frugalness in the kitchen doesn’t have to mean boring.

[If you would like you can order yourself a copy here for $6.60!]


Next up??  Love Grown Foods granola of course!

And guess what?

You get THREE full size bags and you get to pick which flavors you want! 

cocoa goodness : simply oats : raisin almond crunch : sweet cranberry pecan : apple walnut delight

photo (25)

Simply leave comment below telling me your best frugal cooking/kitchen tip[s]!!  *US residents only, sorry!

Giveaway ends Thursday at midnight EST and the winner will be announced Friday. 


I wanted to give an update on the High Park Fire.  I appreciate all of your concern + positive thoughts!  It’s been a bit all-consuming lately.  We’ve constantly been checking for updates, talking to people around town, and hoping for any bit of progress.  The fire has burned over 43,000 acres, over 100 structures, and there have been well over 2,000 evacuation notices made.  The fire is currently at 5-10% containment [I’ve read conflicting numbers].  HPF is currently the 3rd largest fire in Colorado history.

This was one of the most informative updates I’ve read, and it explains a little bit about the process of how they go about containing and controlling the fire.  It’s actually extremely interesting.  The mind boggling thing is that they don’t expect the fire to be completely contained until this fall!

This is the latest update with a slideshow of images.  Hoping the winds stay calm so they can keep fighting this beast!

Reader Comments (307)

Great giveaways!! That cookbook sounds very useful and Love Grown Foods granola is so delicious! I love all of the frugal tips in the comments - such great ideas. One of the things I do to be frugal in the kitchen is to use eggs a lot - they're really nutritious, filling, and so versatile - I can eat them for breakfast (scrambled, fried, omelet, egg sandwich), for lunch (hard-boiled and added to a salad), for dinner (baked in a little ramekin with veggies), or for a snack! And depending on toppings/ spices (guacamole, salsa, etc.), they can be flavored differently, too. Thanks for the update on the forest fire - it's really crazy that they're not expecting to fully extinguish it until fall. Stay safe - you're in my thoughts!
Meal planning has saved me the most $$!
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAnnie
I try to cook my own beans and grains from scratch whenever I can.
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAudrey
I like to shop in the bulk section! Often prices for the exact same grain/bean in a package are much cheaper in the bulk area. Also, you can buy exactly what you need. I especially love getting my spices in bulk. I can fill up my glass spice container for under $1 and know that the spice is super fresh.
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterEmily
My tip is to have your fruits and veggies in plain sight, all washed, cut, and ready to eat. I used to buy tons of produce with good intentions, but never eat it. Now, i have everything so I can see it when I open the door, cut up, and ready to eat. I no longer waste a ton of produce!
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJessica
I buy produce that is in season. It is always cheaper and tastes way better!
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAllie
I use everything, every stem from greens, every bone gets saved when I cook meat (in the freezer for stock), even unused small bits of pesto/herb blends go into a giant tub in my freezer I call the "mush". You'd be surprised, all the various herbs/etc have blended into an awesome paste I use for marinades. Especially great in the summer! Very little is thrown out in my home. I was raised under the mantra "have not, waste not" - and as an adult, I make sure I continue to practice this in my own home.
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterjessica
I am not sure how frugal this is, but I buy a lot of mangoes at Costco and cut them up and freeze them so I can have them in my smoothies with no fuss.
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRachel C
My (theoretically) easiest tip (but not the easiest to do in real life) is to find ways to throw an extra vegetable into every meal so that all of the produce in my fridge doesn't go bad.
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRebecca
Buy seasonally and buy in bulk!
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAnu
I shop bulk whenever I can and try to buy produce in season.
Freezing is a good frugal option as well as stocking up on sales
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRenee
My best tip for being frugal in the kitchen is to prepare my husband's and my lunches to bring to work every other day, so I prepare 4 lunches at one time and it saves time and money every day!
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLeah
One thing that we always have are overripe bananas! We get a big bunch and inevitably cannot eat them all before they turn extremely brown. One great tip is throwing them in the freezer once they reach that point -- then you have time until you're ready to make some banana bread or muffins and your bananas don't have to go to waste!
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJaime F.
Here's one of mine: Save the tops and chopped-off ends of carrots, celery, zucchini, onions, mushrooms, etc. Freeze them in a storage container or zip-top bag until you gather enough (or buy a couple more things) to make homemade stock, either with a chicken carcass, ham bone or no meat at all! They won't look pretty, but they will flavor the broth wonderfully, and you won't throw anything away. Alternatively, start a compost bin to receiver your kitchen scraps and use the rich soil to start a garden to grow your own produce!
And here's one I learned from you, Ashley: Cook beans from scratch, using your slow cooker. A pound of beans is a little more than a dollar, and they cook up so nicely in the crock pot--and they freeze beautifully, too. No need to buy cans for 89 cents when a bag that costs 20 cents more yields three times more beans!
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKayla
Using bulk dried beans,lentils or rice with lots of different spices to change it up. Broccoli, cauliflower and kale are always inexpensive and nutritious. I like to try to make meals that give me the most nutrition bang for my buck. I'm kale addicted.
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterStacey
I do the majority of our grocery shopping at the commissary (a perk I get to enjoy since my husband is in the army) which saves us TONS on groceries. I also like to grind my own flour. Saves money, especially since that way I don't have to buy the whole grain and flour version of the same grain.
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKiersten
Bulk dried beans and grains!!!! Save's a bundle! Also I buy cheaper produce like organic kale and bananas so I have money to splurge on fun things like a nice block of cheese, some organic yogurt, goji berries, high quality chocolate, fancy granola, etc. And I eat a lot of sweet potatoes- filling and CHEAP! :)
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAmy
I try to use all of any part of what I'm cooking. When roasting a chicken, I keep the bones to make stock. When cooking with veggies, I freeze extra scraps to add to soups or stews. I utilize as much as I can!
I always freeze bananas that are about to go bad so that I can use them in banana bread!
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJaime D.
I love using tofu and beans as protein sources...healthier in a lot of ways as well as a money saver!
When I have extra cooked veggies but not enough to make a meal, I'll blend 'em up with herbs or spices and a bit of veggie stock to make a sauce or dressing. Beats letting them go bad in the fridge.
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRH
My best bet is LOTS of veggies. Easy on the meat. Thrown in some good grains and other protein sources (beans? eggs? nuts? etc.). Filling, colorful and versatile!
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterWhitney
Cut more expensive ingredients like kalamata olives smaller so the flavor goes further in a dish. The same thing goes for grating or crumbling an expensive cheese--smaller goes further. Thanks for the giveaways!
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLacey
I scour the "ripe" produce shelves for brown bananas. They are super cheap. I freeze them for smoothies or use them immediately for baked banana treats.
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAimee
I guess my most frugal tip is trying not to fall for all those lovely name brand organic products. Sticking to just whole and simple food is so much cheaper!
Two things that help me (as a single gal) save cash is to find ways to stretch food a little longer, especially produce. It's easy to buy and not use fresh foods fast enough! 1) Hydroponic lettuce - with the roots still attached, these lettuce heads hang in the fridge much longer than those cut off at the base. 2) Keeping bread and smoothie fixings handy for when fruits and veggies have over-ripened. Don't want to eat them straight but blend them with other ingredients and you'll never know they are just past their prime!
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLauren N.
My frugal kitchen tip - shop the ads. When meal planning I always pull up the grocery ad and see what's on sale. Then, develop my meal plan around it ;)
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCarly
I don't have an herb garden so I have to buy them. If I need small amounts of 3 or more kinds, I'll buy the packages that mix them together - like soup herbs or poultry herbs. Sorry about the fires - thanks for the updates
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJennifer
My frugal cooking tip is for chicken. I buy a whole chicken instead of chicken breasts and save a ton of money. The market that I go to will even cut up the chicken for me and de-bone the breasts for free! Whole chickens cost about 2.99/lb and chicken breasts are usually 5.99/lb!
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterElisabeth
My best frugal kitchen tip is to use nonfat greek yogurt as sour cream. I only have to buy one product and I have stuff for smoothies, breakfast, or sour cream for a baked potato or with tacos. Saves me money cause it never spoils from neglect like sour cream might.
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAnanda
I buy all my grains (and beans) and grind my own flours in a NutriMill. My hubby is a huge bread/muffin/scone/biscuit-head so we save a lot by making our baked goods. :-) We're also hooked on making our own salad dressings! They taste so much better and are so inexpensive! Though some friends give me grief, I wash out my ziplocs. :-)
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterChelsea
Frugal tips- 1. Pick a day every week and call it "mustgo dinner". It's leftover night, so everything in the fridge "must go" and get eaten up.
2. When I get home from the grocery store, I put away perishables, and then chop up the veggies that I plan to use later in the week. This saves time, and also ensures that the veggies get used (instead of wasted), and it's cheaper than buying the pre-chopped bags.
3. I started saving a lot of money when I started meal planning. It's easiest for me to do it once a week. I sit down with the grocery ads in hand and plan meals for the week, around what's on sale that week. If it's a REALLY good deal on something like chicken breast, I stock up and freeze in individual freezer bags, so I can just grab however many pieces of chicken I need, and defrost.
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRochelleT
buy in bulk! spices/oats/flours are SO much cheaper when you buy by weight.
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterGillian
We participate in a CSA share and that has been so helpful with saving money, as I always get delicious fresh produce I want and can use. I also buy things like oats and nuts in bulk and use them to make my own oat flour and nut butters.
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBeth
the best tip is seriously to buy half of the produce you want to buy--i always overbuy and some gets wasted. i hate waste! in the summer there are enough farmer's markets that you'll never be without access to more veggies and fruits! :)
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLindsey
I like to make big meals such as enchiladas and lasagna and then eat the left overs for the rest of the week. That way when I don't feel like cooking I can microwave the left overs instead of eating out!
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMegan
I make my own stocks. :)
Eating seasonally and buying in bulk whenever possible. We are also a big cereal-eating household and since I have started making our own granola we save a lot and enjoy a healthier bowl of cereal!
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSherry
I make my own almond and coconut milk - WAY less expensive (TASTES much better too)and then I use the pulp that is left over in cooking - pancakes, cookies, etc. :)
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTammy
My best frugal cooking tip is don't be afraid to substitute and experiment with herbs and spices. You don't have to buy loads of expensive items you may or may not use again-- sometimes familiar flavors can make an unfamiliar food more comfortable!
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMaryEllen
I always buy frozen fruit for smoothies (and freeze leftover bananas for smoothies). It's much cheaper and easier than buying fresh fuit all the time.
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLiz
Definitely not buying either pre-cut vegetables or shredded cheese -- so worth it (and less expensive) to cut your own veggies and shred your own cheese!
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterEva
I freeze very ripe fruit to use in smoothies. I also freeze lots of meals for easy weeknight dinners.
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAshley
My best frugal tip would be to really keep track of your veggie bin and save all the odds and ends for stock. Also, roast as many veggies as possible, filling up all oven space and saving them for salads later.
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterHolly
I shop at the farmers market and freeze all the bits and ends of items to make soup in the winter. It makes for a much better flavor and reminds me of summer. I also make my own dish detergent. WAY cheaper and I know what goes into it. :-)
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSarah H
We love to buy in bulk and freeze the extra! My family has also had a huge garden since I was very little, so canning can provide quality homegrown food into the winter months for much less than the grocery store!
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBreanna
I always buy in bulk, the ingredients that we use the most, and I also freeze a lot of fruit that starts going bad for future smoothies!
i like to base meals around grains and veggies, then add in things like meat or dairy or other "luxury" ingredients for flavor in small doses, if at all. keeps things healthier and cheaper!
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterkari
The things that have helped me save the most: meal planning, freezing anything and everything I can, and making beans from scratch instead of using canned! And this isn't a kitchen tip, but shopping locally at the farmers' market/getting a CSA box has helped us save a ton on produce.
June 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLiz @ The Sixth Letter

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