TUTORIAL: Bread Blend Storage

I love having options in my pantry.

This tutorial explains how I take my favorite bread recipes and turn them into pre-bagged bread mixes or bulk packaged blends I can scoop and bake.

(recipes used in this tutorial are found in my Breads eCookbook here)
Buy Now








I love having quick and easy baking options in my pantry for dinner breads or warm breakfast treats.  It's even better when those options are 'homemade' vs. store bought.
  • Homemade means it's a recipe I know my family likes
  • Homemade means I have had full control of the ingredients that went into the blends / bags
  • Homemade means I can legitimately say 'why yes...I made those from scratch'! 
Of course, the last point is why I like to pre-blend the most!  If I want to make a homemade bread or muffins at the end of a long day or in the middle of a busy day, the idea of pulling out all of the flour, sugar, spices, powders, etc... to get something into the oven will usually overwhelm me and give me reason to say 'never mind'.  

On the other hand....

If I set aside less than an hour one day in the month to stock my pantry with my favorite blends, then 'homemade' baked goods is as easy as grabbing a mix and opening the fridge for milk, eggs and/or butter.  In 10 minutes I can have a 'homemade' bread  in the oven ready for breakfast, lunch or dinner.  

And a bonus benefit of having pre-bagged, homemade blends on the shelf...

I can shop from my pantry for all kinds of gift giving occasions! 
  • I just grab a bagged mix or 2 (breads and soups are really well received)
  • Print or hand write a recipe card (hand written is a nice touch)   
  • Tie the top of the bag with a nice bow, attaching the recipe card as well
  • Put it in a basket or nice gift bag and....
Deliver a Homemade Gift of Goodness from my home to theirs!
  • Showers
  • Birthdays (neighbors, co-workers, teachers)
  • Get Well
  • New Baby meal...something fast and easy Dad can make!
  • and so on... 

If you've purchased my Breads eCookbook Buy Now, this pictorial shows you how I filled my pantry using the bread blends featured in the book.  This process can be duplicated with any of your favorite baking recipes, just by bagging or bulk blending the dry ingredients listed in the recipe.

To make the process easy and stress free, 
there are a few 'must do' steps I strongly recommend:
  1. A few days before you schedule your blending day, pull the recipes you want to stock up on and make a list of all that you will need.  Don't forget to list any bags if you are making individual mixes and not filling a bulk container. 
    • After making the list, shop your pantry first to see what you already have and mark the items off that you won't need to spend money on. 
    • Shop on a day other than your blending day if possible.  It's just less stressful that way!
    • FREE DOWNLOAD: The Breads eCookbook features a form that makes building your list fast and easy.  Click here for a copy free copy of it.  
  2. On 'blending day', have 3 designated stations:
    1. A place to put all of the ingredients you will need for all of the blending. Don't set yourself up for exhaustion or frustration by running to the pantry for the ingredients, one recipe at a time. Review all of the recipes and pull all of the ingredients onto one counter space.
    2. A cleared space for the actual blending.  This is where you will bring the required ingredients for one recipe at a time, set them out and then measure as directed.  
    3. A cleared space to put the finished products.  It's easier on you and more time efficient if you wait until all blends are completed to stock the pantry.  As bags or bulk containers are filled, set them in  the prescribed location and enjoy the feeling of 'success' as you watch the stockpile grow!  When finished with the last recipe, carry your stash to it's rightful place in the pantry. 
  3.  I recommend keeping some of the more commonly used staples in a large, resealable container for easy access.  In fact, I also suggest getting a set of inexpensive measuring cups for each of the containers to make it even easier on yourself.  This comes in handy with day to day use as well as blending day.


These 4 'staples' are stored in my pantry for
easy access.  The 'see through' plastic gives me
a good visual check of what I have on hand
so I'm not caught by surprise when I really need it!
A full set of measuring cups in each container
means I always have what I need and I
don't need to wash them after every use!
 Now we are ready to blend, bag and bulk up! 

First on the list, 
As mentioned in the 'prep steps' above (station #2), this is my
BLENDING SPACE.
I have the ingredients laid out in the order listed on the recipe to be sure I don't get confused.
The recipe is also on this counter, just not in view.
If you look in the background, you'll see I have used my dining table
to keep all of the ingredients  I'll be needing  for all recipes (station #3)
With my bags labeled and lined up, I work left to right and fill my designated number of bags.
Yes...I am messy.  But the end result is worth it!
When I finish bagging, I have a basket pulled from the pantry
waiting at station #3...the place all finished goods go to wait!
STORAGE OPTION:
I have also been known to keep  bagged mixes sorted on my shelves with a pot lid holder.
 It's perfectly sized and keeps them nice and neat!
I like to make bulk versions of blends as well as pre-bagged, single use versions.  
The bulk is usually the product I grab when time to bake, 
but the bagged versions are great when I want to tell a family member 
to grab a bag and make the bread. 
 I keep the recipes in the basket with the bagged items.
When working with flour based blends, it is very important that you use a
WHISK and not a spoon to stir your blends.
It's also important that you scrape the sides many times
and pull up from the bottom often.
And my biggest rule when blending flour based recipes....
"When I think I've blended enough....blend another 3 minutes!"
The bulk recipes in my Breads eCookbook fill a gallon sized container.
If you are using other recipes, experiment a little to see what size container
is best for the bulk version you have chosen. 

I like to tie a ribbon around the bulk container and
slip printed recipes that use the blend onto the ends of the ribbon
This gives me fast options at my finger tips and allows me
to add recipes as I find new ways to use the blend. 
{A knot behind the recipe card makes it easy to untie and add more cards as desired!}

NEXT....

This is my family's favorite cornbread blend.
ingredients out and ready for blending
Single use bags make it easy to grab and bake. 
Whisking up a bulk blend...quick and easy!
Homemade Cornbread Blend...fast, efficient, affordable and a family fave!
This particular bulk blend is primarily used to make cornbread, 
so I print out the directions with my label maker and stick them on top of the lid.


Aaaahhhh.... now to a big time family favorite ~
ingredients out (looks like I cleaned up a little between this and the last blend!) 
Ingredients in a bowl (note: a very big bowl is very very handy!)
Whisk to blend...and then whisk some more!
Ready for the pantry. 
Single use versions bagged and tagged too!
Into the basket and ready for the pantry.  
NOW FOR SOME SWEET BREADS....

Strawberry Bread is a family favorite. 

Ingredients out...
bags filled....
bulk blend whisked....
container filled /
recipes printed and ready.  

Yes...it really does go this fast when you have it all set up
with stations designated and ingredients ready!

Time for the Basic Sweet Bread
(makes pumpkin bread, banana bread, apple bread....)
Ingredients out...
(this one calls for a special blend of spices...see canning jar in front of salt)
The recipe for the spice blend is equal parts of
cinnamon, nutmeg, ground cloves and ground allspice.
However, I learned that if I get these little containers and pour them all together
they fill a pint sized jar perfectly!
I keep this spice blend on hand for all kinds of recipes that call for
a pumpkin pie spice.  
Bulk blend ready to whisk... 
Gallon jar filled and recipes attached!

OK...here is one I don't bulk blend.
It works best when individually bagged, but I keep a lot of bags on the shelf!

ingredients...
bags lined up and filled....
pantry basket filled with finished goods!

REMEMBER HOW I MENTIONED UP TOP THAT
BAGGED MIXES MAKE IT FUN TO
GIFT SHOP FROM YOUR PANTRY?

Well this particular blend is GREAT as a jarred gift.
It fits perfectly in a pint sized canning jar.
Start with the brown sugar and press it down real good... 
add the layer of flour...
top with pecans....

seal the jar and add recipe with a cute little bow!

 There is nothing like a pantry filled with
Homemade Easy Options...
Using tried and true recipes from my
Breads eCookbook.
Buy Now

bulk in back...bagged in front
I'm ready for whatever they want for
breakfast, lunch or dinner!




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