Saturday, January 22, 2011

Bread breakdown

Just in case you've ever wondered if it is less expensive to make your own bread than it is to buy it pre-made (you know who you are), here's my bread cost breakdown.  Before I get to that, though, let me say that if I walk into the store and buy these ingredients, in the sizes available in most grocery stores, for the specific purpose of making 2 loaves of bread, and only those 2 loaves of bread, then obviously that would be much more expensive than just buying 2 loaves of bread.  I already have all of these items on hand, so one could argue that the marginal cost of my 2 loaves of bread is $0.  But, I'm sure that's not what y'all are looking for, so here you go.  FYI, these are not extreme couponing prices--these are what you could reasonably expect to pay for these items, just walking into the store.

3 c. whole wheat flour: $0.32
3.5 c. all purpose flour: $0.28
4.5 t. yeast: $0.70
1/4 c. veg. oil: $0.11
1/4 c. honey: $0.37
1 t. salt: $0.01
water: $0

Total cost for 2 loaves: $1.79

When I buy bread, I buy the el-cheapo store brand, which sells for $1.65 a loaf in my area.  If I wanted to buy bread that is of the same quality as my homemade bread, I would expect to pay around $3.59, so yes, I would say that making bread is cheaper, even if I take my energy usage into account.

Just in case you were wondering, my next project is to make flour tortillas.  All they have in them is flour, water, fat, and leavening.  By making my own, I will not only save money, but I will also be able to add whole wheat flour and/or flax, or whatever else strikes my fancy, to make them tasty and healthy.  Yum! 

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