Alex in Transit(ion)

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mangia: a grocery list for a grad school budget

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I know that other than  my weekly grocery lists, things have been kind of sparse here, content-wise, but alas- I’m finally in that part of the semester where I need to start preparing for project deadlines, look around for internships, and hopefully find a part time job that will allow me to start saving up for the summer and fall.

This feature is awesome though- I get into a lot of conversations based on what I make for the week and I always love hearing that my friends are making the dishes I post, especially those who are far away. We’re still sharing the same experiences but on opposite ends of I-95.

I love this week because last week provided me with quite a bounty of food! That chili I made last week is still going strong and I haven’t even made that spinach and chickpeas side dish or those enchiladas yet. I have city plans for this weekend so I get to use all of that money I’m saving  from not eating take out or going out to the bars during the week to have fun. Which is good.

Also, it’s crazy that I’ve been eating on my own since 2009 but I didn’t realize until now the merits of canned and frozen vegetables. Yeah, it’s better to go for the fresh, but when you’re in grad school or on a budget, frozen and canned vegetables are AWESOME! They cost less and if you happen to make chili that produces a ridiculous amount of servings, you are good to go my friends!


I’m not complaining about having a ridiculous amount  of this to still go through.

I did learn the hard way about why you should always use the ingredients that are listed. In my house, we barely had white sandwich bread because my mother was a whole wheat fanatic, with good reason. So when I was in the baking aisle, although my recipes called for all purpose flour, I went for the whole wheat since it’s better for you.

It worked great in my Apple and Cheddar Breakfast Bread. As you can see, it was fabulous. I’m making it again for this week!


But with my chocolate cake…it was good, but you could tell there was whole wheat flour used because of the texture. Lesson learned: these food bloggers list ingredients for a reason.

This is going to be an exciting week though! Not because I have an article critique due on Tuesday, but I’m making my own vegetable broth! I’m so excited, I’ve literally been saving up vegetable scraps for weeks! My friends C and E have been making their own broth for months so I’m pretty pumped to join their club of breaking free from the can.

Alright, the moment y’all have been waiting for: this week’s menu…and yeah, after spending a year in Virginia and Florida, y’all is staying. I miss hearing people say it.

Breakfast: Apple Mixed Cheese Bread. Otherwise known as “Alex has cheese to use. Might as well go into bread.”

Side Dish: The Spinach and Chickpeas dish I never made.

Dinner: The enchiladas I never made

Roasted Red Pepper and Tomato Soup with Homemade Vegetable Stock! (I’m going to base my concoction on these two

recipes from Emeril and Everybody Loves Sandwiches)

Coconut Quinoa and Kale with Tropical Pesto

Dessert: Vegan Chocolate Avocado Cake (sounds weird, looks delicious)

The List: 

  • Olive Oil 
  • Vegetable Oil
  • All purpose flour
  • White sugar
  • 1 avocado
  • 8 or 9 tomatoes. I’ll see if canned or fresh are cheaper…
  • 3 red bell peppers. Same deal.
  • 2 small yellow onions
  • 1 small red onion
  • garlic
  • quinoa
  • coconut milk
  • small bunch o’ kale
  • coconut flakes
  • cilantro
  • cashews
  • black pepper (believe it or not, I still haven’t bought some)
  • red pepper flakes (same deal)
  • Thyme. Fresh or dried. Whatever’s cheaper
  • Bay leaves
  • Dried chilis (eh, kinda optional. I’m sure the broth will be alright without them, but if they’re on sale, that’s cool)
  • Eggs
  • Cheesecloth
  • Orange Juice
  • Chobani (I miss New York. Big Chobani is always on sale, unlike New Jersey ShopRite where I pay 6 bucks for it. But it packs a ton of protein…)
  • Some awesome craft beer. I tried Wolhaver’s Alta Gracia Coffee Porter and it was fabulous.


I know we all have our opinions about WalMart, But I don’t have a choice since I don’t have a car anymore. It’s all about where the Rutgers shuttle brings me.

  • 2 8 inch round pans
  • Rubber spatula
  • Mixing bowl (it’s become apparent I need one)

Ladies and gentlemen of the internet jury, I’m almost done stocking up my pantry. I’m *this close* to becoming a real grown up. Although real grown ups have jobs and don’t live off student loans, so I still have a ways to go.

Author: Alex

Hello! My name is Alex but you can call me Alexandra if you're feeling fancy. Here you'll find my adventures about exploring my new city of Hoboken, NJ, scurrying over the Hudson River to NYC, my bicycle excursions, and how I'm learning to embrace in medias res.

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