What is a "build your pantry fund"?

What is a "build your pantry fund"?

Last week I posted 3 packs of pasta and 2 jars of preserves that I purchased with our monthly $10.00 "Build Your Pantry" fund. It sparked so many questions about what this fund was and how we use it. When I tell people who want to be more frugal that having a thoughtfully stocked pantry is a must (pantry is just the term I use... it can be a free standing shelf, a cabinet, storage bins, etc) I'm always told that people don't often have money for extra foods after grocery shopping for the week. I am here to change this train of thought by telling you all about the "build your pantry" fund and how you can stock up with as little as $5.00 a month.


What is a build your pantry fund?

  • It is a fund with an allotted amount of money placed in it each month and set aside for food or household items. These items are purchased solely to add to your "pantry" not items for your weekly shopping.

How much money is added to this fund monthly?

  • The set amount can be whatever you decide. I budget $10.00 a month for this. You can do any amount. I have seen people do $5, $20, etc. Whatever your budget allows. There are months that I add extra money if we earned more that month. If you do not find a great deal, roll the money over the next month! DO NOT see this as extra cash to spend on other things!

What Items are good to buy?

  • This will vary based on your family's needs. In December my fund went to cans of corn and green beans that I found for $.50 each. In January I found cream of mushroom soups for $.50 a can. This month I've spent half of our $10.00 fund on jams and $5.00 on pastas that I found on sale.

Why is this fund necessary?

  • Our family budgets tightly on all food and household items. In the event that we need extra money for an emergency, we can shop our pantry that week and save cash.
  • You usually spend this fund on sale items so you save money there.
  • I have given bags of food to people in need from our pantry without hurting ourselves because this fund helps me keep plenty of goods in stock at all times.

Some common non-food Items you'll find in our pantry are... Toilet paper, dish soaps, body washes, toothpastes, batteries, art supplies such as crayons, paints, etc. When I find a great sale I stock use this fund to snag it. Where do I find the sales? I look through the ads while making my shopping list and see if anything stands out. If not, I take the fund with me while grocery shopping. Often times, the sales I find are not in the ads. 


***Use this fund to stock up on popular items you are for sure going to need and use. Before you know it your pantry will be full of items in case of an emergency. I shop our pantry weekly and plan meals around items that will expire soon. And then I replace them with more current items. Don't let the food sit too long that it goes bad. I take a weekly inventory and check expiration dates.


I hope this information is useful and encourages you all to start a build your pantry fund. Please leave us a comment below letting us know if you like this idea and what you plan to do with your fund. We would love to hear your plans.


  • Austine Harris

    This is so good! I’m going to try this in April!

  • Yolanda

    I love the idea of a pantry fund. I have been looking how to save on items, since prices have sky-rocketed. I never thought about this way of saving for items. Great to have items on hand and also, money on hand if needed. Thanks for the idea!!!!

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