When there's a run on the grocery store and people are stockpiling items, your pantry may start to run a little low on the basics. But, wait. . . . Did you know there are quite a few household items you don't actually have to buy at the store? For example, many mixes and seasonings that are available in the store for your convenience today were once homemade before the post-war mid-1900s era. And you, too, can still make many of your own seasonings, snacks and dry mixes easily at home.
So you may be stocked up on food but what about other household items? Did you know you can save a ton of time and money making your own cleaning supplies, too?
Here are 10 things you can make at home — and even save money on at the same time:
- Scratch Ranch Seasoning
- Homemade Natural Liquid Laundry Detergent
- Perfect Peanut Butter Spread
- Homemade Streak-Free Glass Cleaner
- Oh-So-Handy Bone Broth
- DIY Dry Shampoo
- Homemade Bisquick
- DIY Cleaning Wipes
- Perfecto Pesto
- Homemade Toilet Bowl Cleaner
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Here’s all you need to know about making all those essential household items from scratch at home with your family:
1. Scratch Ranch Seasoning
Ranch dressing is one of those things we all toss in the grocery cart without much appreciation for what exactly it’s made of. Whether you use ranch seasoning as an ingredient in recipes, or to mix in with sour cream or Greek yogurt as a dip or dressing, dry ranch seasoning is a great spice blend to have available.
If you aren't able to find ranch seasoning on the store shelves, you don't have to go without! It's actually a blend of a few herbs and spices you probably already have in the spice cabinet. Mix them up in the right proportions with some dry buttermilk powder, and — voilà! — you have a ready-made ranch! Try this easy homemade ranch seasoning recipe. Just don't forget to add the dill, since that's what gives it the signature ranch flavoring!
2. Homemade Natural Liquid Laundry Detergent
Have you ever thought of making your own liquid laundry detergent? It’s super easy to do and you will love knowing exactly what ingredients are in it. This is especially helpful if someone in your household has allergies or sensitive skin. This recipe makes several batches at one time so you can even keep a few back-ups on-hand.
3. Perfect Peanut Butter Spread
Yes, even peanut butter can be made at home in a pinch. You can find peanut butter powders in most health food stores and some major grocery chains as well. Peanut butter powders can come in large and small containers. Whatever size you opt for, just be sure to look for one that has peanuts as the only ingredient, with no extra added sugars, flavors or protein powders.
If that isn't available or in the budget, just use dry roasted peanuts! Blend them up until they are finely diced, and slowly add enough water to create a creamy consistency.
Hint: You will need a good food processor to do this.
When making your own peanut butter, be sure not to use flavored or salted nuts. And remember: you can also blend up almonds, sunflower seeds, cashews and other nuts to make your own seed and nut butters.
4. Homemade Streak-Free Glass Cleaner
Uh oh! So you’ve run out of glass cleaner at home. Did you know you can make your own with just a few supplies you probably have stashed around the house?
Many of the ingredients in this homemade streak-free glass cleaner are low-cost, and the recipe is pretty straightforward. Store the finished product in a glass spray bottle or sealed glass Mason jar to make it last longer.
5. Oh-So-Handy Bone Broth
If you make your own soups and casseroles, you probably go through plenty of broth or stock. Although this is almost always available in stores, it's also a great thing to make at home.
Not only does homemade bone broth contain fewer preservatives — it’s also a good way to use up things in the fridge like extra carrots, celery, onions, and those leftover bones you would normally toss in the garbage. See this easy recipe that makes good use of your Instant Pot.
6. DIY Dry Shampoo
If you’re stuck at home, your haircare routine may be in a bit of a rut. You may not be washing it as frequently, but sometimes you still need to freshen things up.
If you’ve never done it before, now is the perfect time to make your own dry shampoo. For the best shelf-life, store the product in a small jar or old powder container. Use a makeup brush or toothbrush to apply as needed.
7. Homemade Bisquick
It's so easy to mix up a batch of biscuits or pancakes in the morning if you have a baking mix, but these can be expensive and you might not always be able to find them on the store shelf.
Making your own homemade bisquick is an easy solution, since baking mixes contain only a few ingredients you probably already have in the kitchen. Be sure to find a good sealed container, and label your mix properly so you don't forget you have it! Store it in the fridge or a cool, dark pantry to ensure a good shelf-life.
8. DIY Cleaning Wipes
Do you hate using harsh chemicals in your home but wish you had a natural product that actually worked? You can make homemade cleaning wipes for less than a dollar.
Best of all — you guessed it! — these wipes are made with ingredients you probably already have around your home. These work great for using in both the kitchen and the bathroom!
9. Perfecto Pesto
This is one thing some specialty pasta recipes call for, but not all of us have it on hand. Pesto is most commonly made from basil leaves, so it's an easy thing to make yourself and freeze for later. Here’s how to use fresh basil — either from the store or your own garden — to make pesto in advance for those delicious pasta recipes. Homemade pesto is so delicious, you can even use it as a spread on sandwiches!
We recommend sealing your pesto well in a double bag or sealed freezer container, so it doesn’t take on any flavors from the freezer.
10. Homemade Toilet Bowl Cleaner
Running out of toilet bowl cleaner while everyone is spending more time in the home is not a good scenario. Luckily, you can always fall back on making your own with just two secret ingredients.
First, combine 1 cup of baking soda and 1 cup of white vinegar in a small bowl. Second, mix thoroughly and pour it into a refillable spray bottle. Now, sprinkle some additional baking soda onto the sides of the toilet bowl. Then spray the vinegar on the baking soda and wait until it starts to bubble up. Finally, when it stops bubbling, scrub as usual with a toilet brush. It’s best if you do this right before bed and let it do its cleaning magic overnight. In the morning, give it one more scrub and you’re good to go!
If you don't have any at home and can't find it in the store, just make your own from these common spices. Get the recipe here.
Homemade Is Where the Heart Is
Keep an open mind and be willing to try to make a few of these household items at home. You may realize you're a fan of making your own mixes, spice blends, and cleaning products! It's a great way to trim a few dollars off your shopping bill, while also avoiding preservatives and other junk that you find in store brands.
Thanks for reading & Happy saving!