I have already posted how I stock up on lemon juice in quart bottles at Family Dollar and how I use it.
There are other items I keep stocked up on from the Family Dollar and Dollar Tree that are cheap and multi-use.
Here are a few items you would see if you peeked in my pantry:
Brown Sugar and/or White Sugar
These three items seem to have darn little in common, but here's the deal...1 cup of sugar (white or brown), Three or four tablespoons of Olive Oil and One Tablespoon of Baby Shampoo. Add a scented oil--maybe a couple drops of lavender essential oil--if you have it. If not, drop in 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla.
Smells awesome, the olive oil mosturizes, the sugar exfoliates, the baby shampoo adds bubbles.
MUCH cheaper than going to Bath and Body Works!
Store in a pint canning jar. You may have to stir it up before use.
Olive Oil is available at my local Dollar Tree. Twelve Ounce bottle for a buck. Not bad.
I use it for:
On my nails to keep them healthy and shiny.
Furniture polish (mix with a wee bit of lemon juice)
A little in my dogs food to keep her coat shiny
Hand Washing delicates
Mix well with Olive Oil (50/50) for a moisturizing body wash or hand soap (no chapped hands in winter)
Housecleaning duty...I mix it in a spray bottle with water (1/4 cup baby shampoo per quart of warm water) and a tablespoon or two of lemon juice and scrub counter-tops and such. This cleanser is also good on walls (won't strip off paint)
Oil stain on driveway? Pour hot water mixed 50/50 with baby shampoo on the stain, scrub in, let set 15 minutes, rinse off. Repeat if necessary
Look, I almost NEVER cook or bake with white sugar. I drink herbal tea, but I sweeten it with honey.
However, I do use my sugar for some things--even in the kitchen.
I like to peel an orange, a lime and a lemon and put the peels in a quart jar and then feill it with sugar. Citrus sugar! After a couple of months, the peels are all dried out (and sometimes crystallized) and the sugar has taken on a citrus-y flavor. I make this citrus angel food cake once in a while and this sugar is AWESOME to *pop* the flavor!
You can also make spice sugar by putting a couple star anise, a nutmeg and a cinnamon stick and a couple of cloves in a quart jar, add white sugar and shake it a bit. Leave for two months before using.
Sugar can be used as a scrubbing agent that will not scratch in your stainless steel sinks, granite counter tops, etc. However, RINSE VERY WELL, otherwise little ants will come to visit--bringing their extended families with them!
Keep a few packets of sugar in a ziplock bag in your first aid kit. Sugar and honey both have been used for wound treatment for over a thousand years and they work! Less infection and faster healing!
Brown sugar should be kept moist. If your brown sugar is drying out, tuck a fresh slice of apple in the bag and seal it back up.
I use brown sugar in cooking/baking, but I use it for many of the same uses as I do white sugar.
I am so insistent on multi-uses for everything I buy, stock up on or use regularly. Look at your pantry...I am sure you can find multiple uses for many items in there!