Monday, October 3, 2011

The Wrap on Sandwiches

As a homeschooling mom of three teenagers, lunch is a big deal at our house.  What happens when that iconic staple, the sandwich, becomes a challenge, especially for the budget?  Bread is a big gf cost.  When we first became gluten free, we gravitated toward the gf bread you had to toast in order for it to be palatable.  We were new, we didn't know any better, and let's face it, it made lunch a less than pleasing experience.

Months passed and we ventured out of our comfort zone and tried new things like bread mixes.  Out of all the mixes I tried, my favorite was King Arthur Flour Gluten Free Bread Mix.  The cheapest place I found it was at Amazon: three boxes of mix for $19.98.  The bread tastes good and it is pretty simple to make.  A loaf is still over $6.50 though.

We also tried bread out of the freezer section.  They too are expensive.  A loaf, the cheapest I could find and one we thought tasted good, was $5.69, but I could find it on sale for $3.99 and stock up.  Each loaf contains approximately 12 slices which makes each slice of bread 33 cents when it is on sale, 47 cents when it is not.   The slices are also about half the size of a normal slice of bread.  We can blast through a loaf in no time which is not good for the budget!

Next I tried making bread from scratch.  My favorite bread recipe can be found in Gluten Free Mama's Best Baking Recipes.  The Honey Sandwich Bread is absolutely delicious!  Even my non gf eaters think this bread is wonderful.  Cost: $6.92 a loaf.  I cut mine into approximately 20 slices and freeze it.  That still makes it 35 cents a slice.  So you are starting out a sandwich at seventy cents with nothing on it.  If the three gf eaters ate 5 sandwiches a week, 10% of my new budget would be spend in bread alone.  That is not going to work!

Enter the new star on the gf stage:  the wrap!  The sky is the limit when it comes to wraps.  We use basic white corn tortillas which I keep in the freezer.  I take out about 15 at a time to place in the fridge in an air-tight container.  This keeps them fresh.

We have made all kinds of wraps.  Chicken Salad Wraps, Bacon-Lettuce-Tomato & Avocado, Tuna, Pulled Pork, Turkey-Bacon-Cheese, Grilled Ham & Cheese, Roast Beef, Italian Sausage & Grilled Onion, Pepperoni Pizza, not to mention the quesadilla and taco.  Today, Cinnamon toasted her tortilla (yes, you can toast them in the toaster), added cream cheese mixed with a sprinkle of Simply Organic Creamy Dill Dip mix and added sliced grape tomatoes.  Delicious!

Tomato and  Cream Cheese with Dill Wrap

We had these wraps today using leftover pork roast from last night's dinner!

So, what is the bottom line?  Remember the earlier scenario of three people eating 5 sandwiches a week for a month?  Is there a big difference if you simply switch sandwiches for wraps?  Take a look.  A package of 100 wraps purchased at Costco cost $3.85.  That is four cents a wrap.  Let's assume the cost of the ingredients that you put on a wrap or a sandwich are the same and that we are using either two slices of bread or two tortillas.  Using  bread would cost me around $40.00 compared to $4.62 for tortillas.  That is a huge difference!  A $35.00 difference each month or a savings of $420.00 a year.

I am not saying I won't use bread any more, but I will definitely make wraps my lunch of choice!


1 can of chicken or leftover cooked chicken
1/3 cup of craisins
3 stalks of celery sliced
1/4 cup sliced or slivered almonds
2 large heaping spoonfuls of mayo
     (or enough to make it creamy)
1 tsp of mustard (or more if you like)
Garlic and Herb Mrs. Dash (to taste)

Mix all ingredients together and serve with lettuce on a tortilla.

I hope you enjoy!!!

1 comment:

  1. Great ideas! I'll be writing down these wrap fillings and posting that in my kitchen!

    I was never a big fan of corn tortillas until my husband started warming them on the electric griddle. It is now on the counter as a staple appliance and we warm tortillas up on it everyday. It makes such a difference in the taste and texture.


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