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I'm thinking that, in order to further reduce our grocery bill, as well as salt and sugar intake, I would like to start making my own condiments, particularly the little ones that come in packages. DH and I buy the little Knorr packs way too often and they're just salt with a bit of spice mixed in.

So I'm looking for tried and true recipes, as well as anyone else's experiences with making their condiments and dry mixes. Here's what I'm looking for so far:

Chinese lemon sauce
Honey garlic sauce
Dry alfredo sauce mix
Dry gravy mix
Dry taco seasoning
Dry pasta salad mix

Anyone?
 

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Sometimes homemade versions of mixes are more trouble and expense than it's worth because you have to purchase a large selection of ingredients to begin with. So consider total investment with how often you normally use it. You can reduce the cost of ingredients by growing and drying your own herbs and using home-dehydrated veggies (powdered), which are often in these mixtures.

You might find recipes for your favorite National Brands at this link. Recipes From Scratch and More! @ CDKitchen

Several you mention I've never used so am not familiar with what's in them to look for duplicates. I've never made gravy with anything other than meat drippings or meat juices and use a rue or slurry of flour or cornstarch and water. I avoid foods that contain MSG, so once again old-fashioned cooking skills and making things from scratch is a good option.

TACO SEASONING MIX
(source: Saving Money with Homemade Convenience Mixes, Bulletin 4029 - you'll find a large number of other convenient mixes at this link)

1/3 c. instant minced onion
1 T. crushed dried red pepper
3 T. salt
1 T. instant minced garlic
1 T. curry powder
3 T. chili powder
1 T. cornstarch
2 t. oregano

Combine all ingredients. Store in a jar and cover tightly. To use, measure 2 T. to equal a package. Makes 8 packages or 1 cup mix.

You could easily reduce or eliminate the salt and add salt to "taste to" your meat.

Alfredo Sauce - Make it from scratch without a mix, here's a version that uses evaporated milk instead of cream.

No-Cream Alfredo Sauce - 128560 - Recipezaar
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Magic Mix is a basic mix I keep on hand for making all kinds of things - Fudgsicles, pudding, pasta sauces, creamed soup mixtures, basic white sauce, etc.

Magic Mix
(source: I Can't Believe It's Food Storage by Crystal Godfrey. You can find an assortment of Magic Mix recipes on line)

2-1/3 c. dry powdered milk
1 c. all-purpose flour, or 1/2 c. cornstarch (I use cornstarch)
1 c. (2 sticks) butter, at room temperature (I use powdered butter)

Combine dry milk, flour or cornstarch, and butter into a large bowl. Mix with electric hand beater until it looks like cornmeal. Keep mix tightly covered in the refrigerator for up to eight months. Yield: 5 cups.

Magic Mix Gravy

2/3 c. Magic Mix
1 c. meat drippings

In a saucepan, combine Magic Mix with meat drippings and water or broth. Stir rapidly with a wire whisk over medium heat until the mixture starts to bubble and thicken. Salt and pepper to taste.

Pesto Alfredo Sauce

2/3 c. Magic Mix
1 c. water
1 c. Parmesan cheese
1/2 c. pesto
dash salt
dash pepper

In a saucepan, combine Magic Mix and water. Stir rapidly over medium heat until mixture starts to bubble. Add Parmesan cheese, pesto, salt, and pepper. Serve warm over hot noodles.
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Other sources for recipes:

Make Your Own Mixes and Convenience Foods

Make Your Own Mixes

Make Your Own Mixes & Convenience Foods - Mom Advice
 
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