Day Two of Eating Dollar Store Food: Spicing it up (or not)

Today is the second day our Dollar Store Challenge. For three days, we will be eating only food purchased from our local dollar stores. You can read more about this challenge >> here.

Two other bloggers are playing along with H and I. Val, from Just Another Day on the Farm had a more successful Day 2, and Silver’s Day 2 on her blog The Realm of Silveryew.


I started with 2 cups of instant Coffee with Homemade Oat milk creamer and a couple of teaspoons of sugar. I had a serving of baked oatmeal made with applesauce instead of eggs while doing a little editing.

Breakfast for Day 2

This is the recipe for the Baked Oatmeal. I made it without the raisins or the baking powder as neither of my dollar stores had these items in stock.

Thoughts on Breakfast

The baked oatmeal was really good. I will be having it for my breakfast tomorrow.


My plan was to have left-over soup for lunch but I just couldn’t do it. I needed a new plan so while my baked oatmeal was in the oven, I put a cup of rice in my rice cooker. Emergency Fried Rice was on the menu for lunch. I added a little of the minced garlic and olive oil to a pan, then sautéed half of the canned veggies and canned mushrooms before adding about a 1 1/2 cups of cooked rice and a splash of soya sauce.

H made soup for lunch using a package of Knorr veggie soup mix, made according to the package directions, and then she added rice noodles and a little extra water.

Thoughts on Lunch

My lunch was fine but I was right to be afraid of the canned mixed vegetables. They were mushy and gross. This dish would have been better with the addition of some ginger to spice it up and an egg to bulk it out and add some protein.

H and her daughter really enjoyed their soup. She said that her daughter ate two bowls for lunch and then her and her husband finished off the left overs that evening. A sure sign of success!


Ah, the dinner of doom.

My Emergency Fried Rice brought home the role of flavour in our meals. It also remined me that I forgot to pick up spices to add to the curry I was planning to make for dinner. As a result, my dinner preparations started with me walking all the way back to the dollar store to buy more spices. I was impressed that my local Dollar Tree sells what looks like quality, organic spices.

Years ago, I took an Indian cooking class. The lady who taught it encouraged us to add our seasonings to the hot oil in the pan to release their aromatics. So that’s what I did.

With disasterous results.

The Man reacted very badly and very violently to those aromatics. He started coughing and choking and I though he might pass out from lack of oxygen. I took my pot of curry off the burner, put a lid on it, turned on every fan in the house and opened all the windows. During what Environment Canada was calling a, “meteorological bomb.” So now here I am trying to reassure and comfort The Man who can hardly breath while the rain is pouring into our apartment through the open window.

In the end, The Man recovered, I wiped down all the walls in our dining room, and I had a depressing, half cooked chickpea and mushroom curry over rice – with a side of guilt. It was edible but not very good.

Curry with a side of guilt.

To cheer myself up, I had two pieces of cinnamon toast for dessert while watching Alaskan Bush People, who always make me feel more competent.

Sweet comforting cinnamon toast

Thoughts on Dinner

$#(&%#)@&%#@)&%#@$)%&#$@% Probably won’t do that again.

Summary for Day 2

My meals cost $3.27 for the entire day; seven cents more than I spent yesterday. My lunch of fried rice was the most expensive item. When I look at how I did nutritionally, I ate 1802 calories (less than I did on Day 1). Once again, I consumed too much sugar, fat, and carbs but I did consume my recommended amount of fiber and less than my recommended allowance of sodium. Just like yesterday, I did not get enough protein.

Here is a break down of my costs for Day 2:

ItemCost Per ServingNumber of ServingsTotal
Orange Juice$0.311$0.31
Almond Milk$0.31.25$0.07
Baked Oatmeal$0.291$0.29
Fried Rice$1.401$1.40
Chickpea Curry & rice$0.621$0.62
Cinnamon Toast$0.152$0.30
Day 2 Costs

H and I would love (love, love) it if you would join us. We would love it even more if you would share your tips, pictures, experiences and recipes by:

  • Sharing a link to your blog in the comments
  • On Instagram using the hashtag #dollarstorechallenge2020
  • tag me on facebook or post on the hip roof barn facebook page
  • Any other way that works for you.

See you tomorrow!


    1. I’m so sorry for your tummy troubles. I think we have all been suffering a bit in that department. I thank you for participating in this challenge with me and for sticking in there. I know that I learnt some valuable things that will help me stock my pantry here in small, urban, apartment land and develop my food preps. I hope that any lessons you learnt were also valuable.

      And thanks for the tip about the soup mix. A bit added to other dishes would work out well. Honestly, I was surprised by how much I didn’t like it as plain old soup. I’m glad that now I have a way to use it so it doesn’t go to waste. In time I’m sure I will grow to like it

      Having said that, YAY it’s over . Time to get back to regular eating! Valuable lessons may have been gained but dam* it, I want real cream in my real coffee.

      Thanks again ❤


  1. Oh no!!
    What an alarming experience for you both. Not fair that your dinner was icky too.

    I’m right there with you on the mushy tasteless canned veg… they can be really difficult to consume.
    I had such high hopes for yesterday’s soup.
    Those mixes were a staple for me for many years.
    Hoping all gets better tomorrow.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know. I was really looking forward to my soup. I think I will look harder for the one I use to get. I seem to remember it having red lentils, tiny alphabet pasta, and no split peas. May be it’s just the mix.


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