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Frugal Cooking Help


3 tsp =   1 Tbsp
2 Tbsp = 1/8 cup
4 Tbsp = 1/4 cup
5 Tbsp + 1 tsp = 1/3 cup
8 Tbsp = 1/2 cup
10 Tbsp + 2 tsp = 2/3 cup
12 Tbsp = 3/4 cup
16 Tbsp = 1 cup (8 ounces)
1 cup =  48 tsp
1 cup =  16 Tbsp
1 cup =    8 ounces
2 cups = 16 ounces
2 cups =  1 pint
4 cups =  2 pints
4 cups =  1 quart
8 cups = 64 ounces
8 cups =  4 pints
8 cups =  1/2 gallon
1 quart =  32 ounces
1 quart =   2 pints
4 quarts = 128 ounces
4 quarts = 1 gallon
16 ounces = 1 pound




Frugal Cooking Help

More Frugal Food Substitutions

Here are more frugal food substitutions that may come in handy.  Save money by avoiding unnecessary trips to the store that always cost more than planned.
Item Amount Substitute
Baking Powder 1 tsp 1/3 tsp baking soda plus 1/2 tsp cream of tartar
Butter 1 cup 1 cup margarine or 7/8 cup vegetable oil
Buttermilk 1 cup 2 Tbsp lemon juice or vinegar in 1 cup milk
Brown Sugar 1 cup 1 cup white sugar plus 2 Tbsp molasses
Chocolate 1 square 1 sq unsweetened = 3 Tbsp cocoa plus 1 Tbsp shortening
Eggs 1 1 Tbsp soy flour plus 1 Tbsp water
Flour, white 1 cup 1 cup oat flour
Flour, self-rising 1 cup 1 cup all-purpose flour plus 1 1/2 tsp baking powder and 1/2 tsp salt
Flour, for thickening 1 Tbsp 1/2 Tbsp cornstarch  or 2 tsp. quick-cooking tapioca
Herbs 1 Tbsp 1 Tbsp fresh = 1 tsp dried
Honey 1 cup 1 1/4 cup sugar plus 1/4 cup water
Lemon Juice 1 tsp 1 tsp vinegar
Milk, whole 1 cup 1/2 cup evaporated milk plus 1/2 cup water
Onions, chopped 1/4 cup 1 Tbsp dried minced onion
Yogurt 1 cup 1 cup buttermilk




My Favorite Frugal Breadmaker Recipe

bread made in bread making machine

My Favorite Breadmaker Recipe, by Nikki Willhite

A half wheat flour and half white flour recipe for the breadmaker machine.

Bread making machines are not expensive. They are frugal, as it doesn't take long for them to pay for themselves.  One of my favorite frugal dinners is soup and hot bread. The taste of fresh bread is surpassed only by the smell of bread baking in the bread machine.  It is frugal, and it is fabulous... more


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Frugal Food Substitutions



Cake Flour Remove 2 Tbsps of flour for every cup of flour
Self-Rising Flour Add 1 tsp of baking powder and 1/4 tsp of salt to every cup of flour


Out-of-Milk Use 1/2 cup evaporated milk mixed with 1/2 cup water
Buttermilk Add 2 Tbsp milk and 1 Tbsp vinegar or lemon juice to 1 cup milk.  Let set 10 minutes
Whole Milk Add 3 Tbsp of cream to 1 cup of skim milk

Cheese and Cream

Cream Cheese Mix 1 cup of cottage cheese with 1/4 cup of butter or margarine
Sour Cream Mix 1 cup of yogurt with 3 Tbsps of melted butter


Baking Powder Mix 1/4 tsp baking soda with 1/2 tsp cream of tartar
Chocolate Use 3 Tbsp cocoa with 2 1/2 tsp butter for one unsweetened baking square
Lemon Juice Use 1/2 tsp white vinegar
Tomato Sauce Add water to tomato paste


Baking Times for Cakes

chocolate cake on pedestal

Most cakes bake at 350 degrees.  Here are the approximate baking times.


8-inch round pans 35-40 minutes
9-inch round pans 30-35 minutes
13x9x2 inch pan 35-40 minutes
15x10x1 inch pan 25-30 minutes
Bundt cake pan 35 - 60 minutes
Cupcakes 18-23 minutes


Frugal Recycling

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Frugal Creativity

"Use it up,
wear it out,
make it do,
or do without"

Frugal can be creative fun.  Learn to reuse, recycle, repurpose, reinvent, re-imagine... and save money. 


Frugal Living Today

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Updated website with advice to save money in today's world!




Welcome to Frugal Happy Families

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Welcome to the opening page  of Frugal Happy Families. On this site you will find thousands of frugal articles on a variety of subjects.  Click on the subject links to the left to find detailed indexes.  Find the index for frugal money saving tips lower on this page.

  Search Frugal and Simple Living Sites by Keyword Below



From the Editor

Editor's Corner


Frugal Christmas

Christmas is for the Frugal, by Nikki Willhite   How you can become clouded in the materialism of Christmas and forget the true meaning of Christmas.

Christmas TreeChristmas...such a wonderful time of year.  From the smell of gingerbread baking in the oven, to the festive decorations in our homes, it is a time to enjoy.  However, none of these things would mean a thing without our families, and to some of us, our faith and religious beliefs.  However, there are many people who would make Christmas nothing but financial profit and bills to the consumer... more


New and Featured Frugal Living  Articles on the Site

Frugal Christmas

Christmas Snowman10 Free and Low-Cost Ways to Give Kids the Best Holiday Season Ever, by Norma Schmidt.  How to have a family fun, low cost Christmas.

Yes, you CAN tame commercialism and give your kids a fantastic holiday season at the same time. Kids naturally look forward to getting Christmas presents. But presents donít need to be the all-consuming focus. The more we enrich the holidays with simple, homespun pleasures and gifts of time and attention, the more kidsí wish-lists stay in the background... more


Frugal Recipes

Christmas Spice Cookies or Pepparkakor - Homemade Swedish Spice Cookie Pepparkakor recipe.

Christmas cookies

8 ounces (2 sticks) butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 egg
1 tablespoon light corn syrup
1/4 cup orange juice
. .. more

Frugal Christmas

Christmas presentsGift Basket Ideas, by Nikki Willhite.  Ideas to make themed gift baskets for friends and family.

Dessert Baskets

Choose a dessert, and include the ingredients.  Choose from cookies and cakes, to ice cream sundaes.  Add items needed to make or serve the item, such as ice cream scoops or cookie cutters... more


Frugal Christmas

Christmas Candy CaneFrugal Christmas Decorating, by Nikki Willhite.   How to save money decorating your home for Christmas.

We like our homes to look festive at Christmas, yet it can be costly to decorate them. It can also be hard to compete with the three foot moving carolers or the full-size reindeers and giant Santas.  Sometimes I wonder where people store these things the rest of the year... more


Frugal Recipes

Christmas Spice Cookies or Pepparkakor - Homemade Swedish Spice Cookie Pepparkakor recipe.

Christmas cookies

8 ounces  butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 egg
1 tablespoon light corn syrup
1/4 cup orange juice
. .. more

Frugal Christmas

Christmas TreeChoosing a Christmas Tree, by Nikki Willhite.  Things to consider when choosing a tree for Christmas.

There are all kinds of Christmas trees. There are big trees, small trees, live trees and artificial trees. On these different trees, some of the branches point up, some point down. Some artificial trees come with the lights already attached. Some are easy to assemble, as they pop up like an umbrella! On other trees you have to put each branch up individually, shaping it as you go... more


Frugal Christmas

Christmas BellsChristmas Traditions:  25 Meaningful Ideas for Families, by Susie Cortright. Lots of ideas for things to do with your family on Christmas to set family traditions.

The holidays are a time to revel in the gratitude and love we feel for one another. Here are 25 meaningful ways to celebrate your togetherness this season.

1. Go for a family nature walk near your home to collect seasonal items that you can use in your holiday decor. If you live near a forest, the obvious choices are pine boughs and pinecones, but... more


Frugal Christmas

Christmas ReindeerLast Minute Gift Ideas - Ideas for gifts everyone can use and you can keep in reserve in your home.

No present, yet?  Running out of time?  Have you procrastinated and are now in a bind?  Pulse rate up and heart beating fast?  Geez... scrambling to find gifts at the very last minute can be stressful and downright pathetic.  Relax.  Don't lose your cool.  Here are a variety of quick gift ideas that are guaranteed to please...Gift certificates are the ultimate life saver. They're quick and easy to buy and come in any denomination.  . more


Frugal Christmas

Christmas StockingStocking Stuffers, by Nikki Willhite.  Gift ideas for stocking stuffer that are frugal.

What is a stocking stuffer? To many people it is a gold pendant. To others, it is a comic book. While it would be nice if our stocking stuffers could be made of gold, (and money grew on trees), we need to come up with some acceptable, modest items to put in the stockings decorating our mantels and fireplaces, and for our families... more


Frugal Christmas

Homemade Snickerdoodle Recipe - How to make homemade Snickerdoodle cookies.


1/2 cup butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 c shortening
2 eggs
... more



Frugal Christmas

Christmas bulbs10 Great Holiday Decorating Ideas On a Budget, by Kathleen Wilson.   Frugal ways to decorate the inside of your home for the holidays.

1.First things first. Set a plan or a theme for your Christmas decorating. It doesn't cost a thing to have a good plan, and when you are working with budget ideas, this is what pulls your ideas together... more


Frugal Christmas

cookiesGiving Homemade Mixes in a Jar, by Monica Resinger.   How to give food far mix gifts, and a recipe for a mix for peanut butter chocolate cookies.

Mixes in a jar are thoughtful and inexpensive gifts to give to anyone for any occasion. The idea is to layer dry ingredients of a cookie, cake, biscuit, muffin, beverage or other recipe decoratively in a jar and add directions of how to complete the recipe.  more


Frugal Christmas Entertainment

SantaChristmas Movies, by Jayne Waldorf - A review of Christmas movies the whole family will enjoy.

Movies related to Christmas help to create a fun atmosphere and can also teach moral lessons related to Christmas. While everyone will have different Christmas movies that are most enjoyable, there are some that remain favorites... more


Christmas reindeerFrugal Christmas Decorations

How to Tackle Outdoor Christmas Decorations, by Vickie Lexom - Tips on how to decorating the outside of your home for the holidays.

No longer does dad have to stand on that rickety old ladder to try and put up outdoor Christmas decorations with mom at the bottom holding on so he won't fall off and hurt himself. Now, it can be fun and easy for the whole family.. more


Frugal Recipes

Cranberry Salad - Ingredients include canned cranberry sauce, raspberry jello, crushed pineapple and pecans.


1 small package raspberry jello
3/4 cup boiling water
1 can cranberry sauce (whole berry). .. more

Frugal Decorating

quilt blockDecorating with Quilts: Not Just for Beds, by Nikki Willhite - How to decorate with quilts and add country charm to your home.

Nothing warms up a room, or gives it more character than a quilt. Most of us cannot afford high quality quilts, but there is no lack of beautiful, hand stitched imported ones at economical prices.

What can you do with a quilt besides put in on a bed?... more

Frugal Christmas

Christmas Hearth

How to Really Enjoy Christmas, by Susan Dunn. Ideas to get into the holiday spirit and have an enjoyable Christmas season.

I'm known in my family as the original Christmas Elf. I've always loved Christmas and thought it was created just for me. And this even when for many years I held jobs that escalated dramatically during December... more


Frugal Christmas Recipes

Christmas Candy CaneEasy Does It Christmas Food, by Monica Resinger.  Snacks include clam dip, toffee treats, Irish Cream, and Peanut Butter Bon Bons.

I usually make a snack buffet table for the Christmas Eve celebration at our house. It is very simple and helps keep my stress level down. I can make all of it ahead of time and just set the table up later... more


Frugal Recipes

Easy Pistachio Fruit Recipe   Easy recipe for a pistachio fruit salad using a pistachio pudding mix and pineapple chunks.

2 packages pistachio pudding
1 (20 oz) can pineapple chunks
1 medium Cool Whip. .. more

Frugal Recipes

Butter Cookies   A frugal recipe for homemade Butter Cookies


2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar. .. more



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Frugal Money Saving Tips

Help with Thrift and
Frugal Living

Click on the letters in the line below too find frugal tips arranged by alphabet.




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Frugal Computers

Internet Adware Scams, by Nikki Willhite  How the Internet Adware Scam works and frugal ways to remove it from your computer.

If you have ever had your computer infected by Adware, you know the consequences. Adware is a HUGE scam on the Internet. Adware works somewhat the same as a virus.  You get it by opening an infected email, or downloading an infected file. ...Once Adware is on your computer, pop up windows will start coming up on your screen....The Adware is doing everything it can to get you to go to their sites. To add injury to insult, there is a second part of this scheme... more


A Frugal "Must Read"


red tulip border

Frugal Wisdom

books and eye glassesThe Dalai Lama, when asked what surprised him most about humanity, answered "Man.  Because he sacrifices his health in order to make money.  Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health.  And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present; the result being that he does not live in the present or the future; he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies never really having lived."

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Be warm, be safe;  save time and money.  Be frugal and be happy.


Frugal Basics - Some Favorite Frugal Articles

Think Cash!

dollars and coins

Reduce Your Spending Using Cash

Want an easy way to reduce your spending. Use CASH!

Plastic isn't money. It doesn't look like money, and it doesn't feel like money. It is very easy to hand over a plastic card to pay for a purchase. Hand someone a couple of $20 bills, and it is a different feeling. Cash is a frugal living tool.

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Frugal Decorating

Frugal Shopping

Frugal Clothing

Saving Money on Children and Babies

Decorating with Texture
Fixing Up Old Cupboards
Pattern Perfect
Shabby Chic and Interior Design
Craig's List Savings
A Step Too Far  
Shopping and the "Rule of 3"
Wants vs. Needs
How Pattern
Affects Clothing
Frugal Clothing Alterations
Frugal Clothing Choices
Judging the Price of Clothing
Baby Care for Less
Back to School Clothes Shopping
What to Do When Your Children Break Things
Saving Money in the Kitchen Frugal Recipes Frugal Crafts

Frugal Automobiles

Economical Food Substitutions
Economical Stir Fry Cooking
Eggless Cake Recipe
How to Choose Fruit
The Economical Egg
Homemade Granola
Homemade Gravy
Homemade Ketchup
Homemade Pizza
Homemade Ranch Style Salad Dressing
Using Your Fabric Scraps
Decorating with Quilts
Frugal Quilting
How to Save Money Sewing
Saving Money on Auto Insurance
Saving Money on Auto Repairs
Saving Money on Gas

Frugal Money

Frugal Simple Living

Frugal Organization

Frugal Odds & Ends

Frugal Investing
Piggy Bank Savings
The Power of Compound Interest
The Ideology of Being Frugal
Tightwad Treasures
Finding Storage Space
How to Organize Your Home
Frugal Computer Use
Saving Money on Clothing and Textiles
"What Not to Wear vs The Housewife Hoodie"

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