Step away from the ready meals, put that jar of sauce down and ditch those microwave faves, it's time to go homemade. We've rounded up 50 foods that are much better homemade than shop bought and we can prove why...
Step away from the ready meals, put that jar of sauce down and ditch those microwave faves, it's time to go homemade. We've rounded up 50 foods that are much better homemade than shop bought and we can prove why.
From ready meal classics like lasagne and fish pie to freezer favourites like Yorkshire puds and fish fingers, this collection of foods really are best made from scratch.
We know how speedy shop-bought meals can be, and we know that if you're short on time it might be the easier option but when comparing the ready made stuff and the homemade versions, homemade truly does win hands down when it comes to these foods.
Click through to see all of the 50 foods that are much better homemade...
You just don't get that crispy texture you want from Yorkshires when buying ready made ones. Homemade guarantees a light crisp every time and the added bonus? Well, they're much cheaper to make from scratch too.
Get the recipe: How to make Yorkshire pudding
Do you know about the amount of sugar that goes into cereal these days? Just have a flick through our best and worst cereal collection to see for yourself. If you make your cereal from scratch you can keep track of exactly what's going into every bowlful.
Get the recipe: Granola
Delicious homemade burgers made from fresh minced meat equals a mouth-watering experience you just don't get with ready made patties. You can add lots of different herbs, spices and seasonings to your meat and you can take control of the salt count and the added fat when making your burgers at home - how good does that sound?
Get the recipe: Homemade burger
Chocolate chip cookies
Nothing beats a warm batch of gooey cookies bejewelled with melting chocolate and a soft buttery taste - you just really don't get this kind of experience with the packet ones. Trust us, the warm smell of freshly baked cookies will change your mind.
Get the recipe: Chocolate chip cookies
Have you ever made croissants from scratch before? You're missing out. The shop-bought version really does neglect the soft lightness that makes this French pastry a classic dish. Give them a go!
Get the recipe: Croissant
Be it powder, granules or packet mash, none live up to the fluffy expectations that homemade mash creates. Mash really is so simple to make, a knob of butter and a dash of milk with a mini mashing workout - the ready made versions just do not compare.
Get the recipe: Mash potato
Fed up of spending lots of money on chocolates for them to be scoffed up in seconds? We're feeling your pain. Not only is making chocolates from scratch completely satisfying, it's cheaper than buying a box and the richness will mean they last a little longer too. It's time to roll those sleeves up then...
Get the recipe: Chocolate truffles
Tomato pasta sauce
We can put our hands up and say that we're partial to a jar of the shop-bought stuff every now and then but when it comes to the amount of salt in each one, it's enough to put us off for life. Making your pasta sauce from scratch means you have control over how much salt goes in which makes homemade the better option for your health.
Get the recipe: Tomato pasta sauce
We're seeing falafel more and more on supermarket shelves, from ready made to the powder versions which you just add water to. Either way we're backing the homemade option instead - they're fresher, easy to make and most importantly bursting with flavour, just like a falafel should be.
Get the recipe: Homemade falafel
Granules really don't cut it for us. We just end up with watery gravy every time. That's where the homemade stuff comes in. Freshly prepared meat juices for the flavour and flour to make the sauce as thick as you like - perfect!
Get the recipe: How to make gravy
Sometimes it's easier to just buy a tub of mini meringues instead of making your own, but you're really going to be missing out on the crisp and crunch that is a meringue. Once you've practised your meringue making technique at home, the tubs will be a distant memory.
Get the recipe: How to make meringue
Don't even get us started on the fat count when it comes to comparing homemade lasagne to shop bought. When we compared the two in our ready meal swaps collection, the homemade version had nearly 10g less fat than the ready made one - mind blown!
Get the recipe: Lasagne
If you often find yourself reaching for a cereal bar for breakfast or your mid-morning snack at work, you might want to think again and opt for the homemade version instead. Cereal bars, like cereals, have a surprisingly high amount of sugar in them (see our best and worst cereal bars round-up to see just how much) so we'd recommend making your own cereal bars so you know exactly what's going into them.
Get the recipe: Strawberry and rhubarb breakfast bars