30 Things to Make Instead of Buy

By Brandy, Contributing Writer

As homemakers, there are so many things that we can easily make at home instead of buying products that contain ingredients that are potentially harmful to our health.  And with the internet at our fingertips, ordering supplies to make a product here or there has never been so easy.

I love when I walk through my favorite stores and pass right on by the baking mixes, the household cleaners, and vanilla extract, because I know I have everything I need at home to make those things in their purest forms.

Reasons for Making Your Own Instead of Buying

  1. It’s inevitably healthier (and fresher) to make something at home with all natural (and organic, preferably) ingredients than to buy a commercially-packaged item.
  2. It’s almost always cheaper to make your own, and if it’s not right now, consider that you’re investing in your health so that you don’t have to shell out cash for medical expenses later on.
  3. Once you build up a bit of a collection of natural products and foods, it becomes easy to make things from scratch.
Here are a few kitchen staples, household cleaning products, and personal care items that I’ve learned to make for me and my family over the years.

Kitchen Staples


self-rising flour

fruit and veggie wash

gluten-free desserts


vanilla extract

granola bars

Italian dressing

ranch dip mix



flaxseed meal


pancake mix

cornbread mix

cream of chicken soup

Household Cleaning

moth repellent

all-purpose cleaning spray

glass cleaner

furniture polish

laundry detergent

air freshener / room spray

Personal Care

foaming hand soap

body scrub

body butter

foot scrub

foot soak

insect repellent


herbal bath soak

What are your favorite homemade kitchen staples and household products?

About Brandy Ferguson

Brandy is a wife of 17 years and a homeschooling mom of eight boys. She spends most of her time teaching, cooking, and managing a busy, happy home.  She also enjoys writing and encouraging mothers at her blog where she shares household tips, homeschooling resources and recipes at TheMarathonMom.com.

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  1. lapolyglot says:

    I just experimented with home made syrup and was greatly pleased with the results!! No high fructose corn syrup here!

  2. valerie says:

    I have never made homemade bread and I am reading your recipe for homemade bread and I feel encouraged to make it. I have a question about the 10 cups or org. unbleached flour under the ingredients, is it regular flour or bread flour bc under the directions under 2. it says begin adding bread flour. I just want to make sure I have all the right flours before i begin. (are there 3 difft. types of flours used?) Thank you for your godly wisdom and your blog I have learned alot.

  3. Stacey M says:

    I love to make homemade fajita seasoning and taco mix! They always come out tasting better than the store-bought varieties, and they’re also super easy to make.

  4. I had no idea that I could make my own vanilla extract! It’s so easy as well! Everything on this list is really smart and I want to try them all!

  5. I jus used homemade carpet cleaner in my machine, and it worked almost as good as the commercial stuff. Although now I have a huge headache from my house smelling like vinegar (that was my one hesitation… I am very sensitive to the smell of it!) and am not sure I saved any money :/ I used a whole gallon of vinegar but a bottle of commercial stuff lasts 2 years because I use only 1/2 cup at a time. Undecided if I will use it again?

    I have been doing better at making cookies from scratch instead of buying prepackaged!

  6. This is a terrific list. I am allergic to MSG and its in so many foods. I have had to learn to make my own …

  7. I have a list of 15 things to make from scratch, although I have to admit, I don’t do all of them all the time.

  8. What a great list of projects! I try to make as much as possible myself, and can’t wait to try out some of these! :)

  9. This is a great resource! Thank you!

  10. Great list! I’ve been making so many things from home as well. I didn’t know vanilla extract could be homemade! LOL. Thanks for sharing!

  11. I appreciate your compiling this convenient list!
    My favorite homemade product is definitely my laundry soap. I can’t think of anything else I make at home that saves us that much money. :)

  12. And using a Thermomix to do it makes it so much easier. There is very little on this list that you could not do in a Thermomix!

  13. Very cool! Thanks for compiling all of these wonderful ideas into one place. :)

  14. Great list! I want to try these!


  1. […] 30 Things to Make Instead of Buy: This is a great list of things that you can make homemade for cheaper and healthier. […]

  2. […] of natural products and foods, it becomes easy to make things from scratch. Click on over to KeeperoftheHome where I’m sharing about a few kitchen staples, household cleaning products, and personal care […]