Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Dry Bread Crumbs ($0.13 per cup)

$0.13 per cup     73% savings     save $5.41 yearly

Before I start, let me apologize profusely for the photos in this post that are a million different kinds of awful. I took them a long time ago, didn't really know how to make 'em pretty. Cringe-worthy, grape-nut-esque pictures are the result. 

Okay. Back to business: Dry bread crumbs.

They are used as a coating for all kinds of tasty dishes. In fact, I'm writing about them because they work perfectly with the Homemade Fish Sticks recipe I'm posting tomorrow. 

First off, I have to say that making your own bread crumbs is not going to make too much of an impact on your wallet, BUT there is something I have to show you before you dismiss the idea of making them.

Allow me to present Exhibit A: 

Ingredients: Enriched Wheat Flour, Malted Barley, Niacin, Ferrous Sulfate, Thiamine Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Folic Acid, Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Corn Syrup, Partially Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil (Soybean and/or Cottonseed Oil and/or Canola and Corn Oils). May Contain Salt, Yeast, Sugar, Honey, Sesame and/or Poppy Seeds, Molasses, Wheat Gluten, Whey, Soy Flour, Whole Wheat Flour, Rye Flour, Oat Bran, Corn Flour, Corn Meal, Rice Flour, Potato Flour, Butter, Skim Milk, Buttermilk, Lactic Acid, Distilled Vinegar, Soy Lecithin; Dough Conditioners (Mono and Diglycerides, Sodium and/or Calcium Stearoyl Lactylate), Yeast Nutrients (Contains One or More of the Following: Monocalcium Phosphate, Calcium Sulfate, Ammonium Sulfate), Calcium Propionate (Preservative), Potassium Sorbate (Preservative).

Those are the ingredients for bread crumbs... From the can... 

Am I the only one who's seriously confused about this?!

Shouldn't there just be one ingredient? I get that they had to break down exactly what was in the bread, but GOODNESS! I've NEVER seen a bread recipe with all of THAT going on. 

Which brings us back to making your own 1-ingredient bread crumbs:

I don't believe that there is an easier recipe on this planet than "dry bread crumbs." ... Well, except for regular bread crumbs, and maybe pop-tarts if your name is Brian Regan

I don't even know if you can call it a "recipe." It's bread. That's dry. And crushed into crumbs.

BUT the first time I needed to know how to make the dry bread crumbs called for in a yummy recipe I was trying out, I looked for some direction. I did not want to screw up dry bread crumbs for pete's sake... and now I am happily passing along the "recipe" to you. 

Dry Bread Crumbs
Printable Version

*Makes approx. 1 cup

(Note: You can make as much as you want and store it in a sealed container in the fridge for a couple weeks. Do not use stale bread. It will result in stale-tasting bread crumbs.)

3 slices of homemade bread (I usually end up using the large heels of my Best Wheat Bread)
4 slices store bought bread (You can use any kind of bread you want. Most recipes you'll encounter use white bread crumbs, but you can substitute with wheat, rye, etc.)

Pre-heat your oven to 300 degrees. Cut bread into strips and place on a baking pan.  Bake for 20 minutes or until bread is dried out. Cool the bread strips on a cooling rack to prevent any remaining moisture from the bread to condense between the bottom of the bread and the hot pan.

If you have a food processor, process the bread until bread crumbs are achieved. If you don't have a food processor (that would include me), place the bread in a ziplock bag, and crush the bread with a rolling pin till your bread reaches the desired coarseness.

Store in a sealed container in the fridge.

~ Savings ~

Cost Breakdown:
1 loaf Best Wheat Bread - $0.71 = 16 slices = $0.044/slice = $0.133
Total Recipe Cost: $0.13
Cost per cup: $0.13
The Contender:
Meijer brand Plain Bread Crumbs 15 oz. (3.5 cups) = $1.73
Cost per cup: $0.49
Savings: 73%

"Over a year" scenario:
Make 15 cups homemade bread crumbs: $2.00
Use 15 cups Meijer brand Plain Bread Crumbs : $7.41
*Money Saved: $5.41


  1. Love this! I just read something about this on another website but she only said to get organic. I'd much prefer make it myself so thanks for the tip! :)

    1. Glad I could help. :) Bread crumbs are one of those things that I think our generation has just grown up buying... and it doesn't occur to us that making them would take less time than driving to the store to pick 'em up, would cost less and be much healthier. Thanks for stopping by!!

  2. I love your exhibit A. Have you tried freezing your bread crumbs? I keep my store-bought bread crumbs in the freezer, because I don't use them very often, and don't want them to go bad in between uses. I'm just wondering if the consistency will maintain over weeks/months in the freezer.

    1. I've never actually stuck mine in the freezer, because I don't usually have a ton of extra when I make up batches for fish sticks, or breaded chicken, etc. I'll have to make a batch and stick them in the freezer and see what happens. I'd imagine they'd be just fine as long as they were completely dried out. I'll let you know what happens for me. :)

  3. I know this is old but I have a silly question .....why do you need to use store bought bread and homemade? You can't just use homemade OR store bought?

    1. Hi there. NOT a silly question at all. If someone had asked me to use homemade and store-bought I would have thought they were nuts. However, the recipe says 3 slices homemade bread OR 4 slices store-bought bread. (Homemade tends to be a little thicker/heartier). Hope that answers your question! :)


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