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Food Challenge This Week

May 14th, 2016 at 10:46 pm

We are a little low on funds this week, so I am setting up a food challenge for this week. I am attempting as much as possible to use food we already have in our cupboards and fridge. Here are our planned meals:

1) Breakfasts - eggs, smoothies, veggies, and piece of fruit. I already had 3 out of the 4 dozen eggs needed, butter, coconut oil, carrots, and almond milk. 7 breakfasts

2) Meatloaf w/ side of veggies. I already had sweet potatoes. 2 lunches for DH

3) Lunches Leftover From Last Week. 5 lunches for DH

4) Ham and Bean Soup. I already have the beans, herbs, seasonings, and homemade broth. 4 lunches for me

5) Salads with garbanzo beans. I already have the beans, kale, green onions, sea salt, black pepper, radishes, lettuce, and carrots. The kale, green onions, and lettuce are actually growing in my garden. 3 lunches for me

6) Turkey curry. I already have the seasonings. I will use a turnip instead of a parsnip because I already have it.

Text is and Link is 1 supper for DH and me.

7) Meatloaf turned into stir fry. I already will have the meatloaf from making it for DH. I already have the seasonings and salsa. 1 supper for DH and me.

8) Tuna Salad. I already had leftover homemade mayo and 3 cans of tuna. 1 supper for DH and me

9) Baked Chicken w/ potatoes and green beans. I already have the herbs and seasonings. 1 supper for DH and me

10) Leftover Chicken. Haven't Decided What to Do With it Yet. 1 supper for DH and me

I think that will come close to meeting all of our food needs this week. I love Food Challenges.

More 52 Week Challenge Progress and Buckling Down

May 9th, 2015 at 07:10 pm

Hi, everyone. In a true effort to buckle down and not allow spending and debt to get out of control, I decided to make as many meals as I can out of what food I already had in my cupboards, fridge, and freezer. I made an inventory of the food at the same time I made my shopping list.

1/2 pound raw cauliflower
4 ounces raw pumpkin seeds
8 ounces raw flaxseeds
1 pound raw carrots
1/2 raw cabbage
12 ounces frozen french green beans
12 ounces frozen okra
2 onions, 1 red and 1 white
12 ounces almond milk
plenty of dried herbs and spices for making recipes
1 raw beet
2 red potatoes
3 servings of soup I made for my husband
1/2 bulb of garlic

I also have plenty of kale, 2 kinds of lettuce, and arugula to make salads for me. The lettuce is especially loving the moist, cool weather we have been having and so is huge.

1) Potato Salad with avocado with potatoes, avocado, lemon juice, mustard, paprika, sea salt, stevia, pepper, and green onion. I will add ham to this recipe

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2-3 lunches for me

2) Eggs, Meat, Vegetables, and Smoothies. Add seeds and veggies to smoothies
7 breakfasts for my husband and me

3) Burgers with potatoes and kale (potatoes, sea salt, pepper, garlic, kale)
Text is and Link is
1 supper for my husband and me

4) Salad with lettuce, kale, chives, arugula, garbanzo beans, olive oil, apple cider vinegar, green onion, sliced almonds, sea salt, pepper. 1 salad will have a cut up beet.
4 lunches for me

5) Rotisserie Chicken and steamed vegetables
1 supper for my husband and me

6) Chicken Soup with onion, carrots, green beans, ginger, garlic, and homemade broth
4 lunches for my husband

7) Leftover Soup
3 lunches for my husband

8) Spaghetti Sauce with onion, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, garlic, oregano, sage, basil, chives
- Add broccoli instead of pasta
1 supper for me and my husband

9) Stir Fry With Beef, Onion, ginger, garlic, bell pepper
1 supper for me and my husband

10) Leftover Turkey Curry with onion, carrot, parsnip (substituting turnip), sweet potato, mushrooms, bell pepper, diced tomato, coconut milk (substitute almond milk), curry, turkey, coconut oil
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11) Unstuffed Cabbage Rolls with beef, olive oil, onion, cabbage, diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, pepper, sea salt.

Had the Whole Week Off - Wheee!

May 19th, 2012 at 12:43 am

Hello, financially savvy friends and neighbors! I had the whole week off for vacation. Yeah! But don't worry. I wasn't using that opportunity to spend, spend, spend. In fact, I spent most of it at home. I watched some old tv episodes and movies on Netflix, played with my cats, did some catchup filing of receipts, cleaning my house, cooking, and shredding of receipts I no longer needed. Wow. My house really needed some decluging. It needs a lot more. Maybe I will work on it more tomorrow. I will be back to work on Monday.

As always, I am a constant quest to save money and eat more healthy also. I am also trying to eat some meatless meals to see if that helps. Here are my meals for the coming week:

1) Meatloaf with side of veggies - 2 meals

2) Roast beef with side of veggies - 2 meals

3) Oatmeal with raisins, flaxseeds, almond milk, and honey. Juice. Side of ham. 4 meals

4) Scrambled eggs. Juice. Oatmeal with flaxseeds, almond milk, and honey. 3 meals

5) Spaghetti sauce with rice. Side of veggies. 2 meals

6) Lentil Rice Pilaf. Side of raw veggies. 2 meals
Text is and Link is

7) Spinach salad with tomatoes, flaxseeds, sliced almonds, and tuna (or lentils). Vinegar and oil for dressing. Side of orange or apple. 4 meals.

8) Hamburger patty. Side of veggies. 1 meal

NSD Today and Making a Roast

September 25th, 2011 at 08:44 pm

I don't especially seek out no spend days, but when they happen, I do celebrate. I am trying to trim our expenses where it is possible in order to save more to buy a replacement car. I don't want to go into debt to buy a car, unless necessary. I am also trying to get the credit card paid down. I would not mind using it for every day expenses and paying it off immediately, but I am not that disciplined yet.

Yesterday, I was at the grocery store wondering what to buy to eat. My hubby is a little picky and whiny. He grumbles about "how I never fix anything different" but is not specific about what he wants. So, it's like finding a needle in a haystack. Anyway, I saw this top round roast (2.09 pounds) for $2.99 a pound on sale. What a bargain! I thought I could cook it in the oven first and eat probably about 1/3 of it with some cooked cabbage and green beans. Then, we could eat some on sandwiches. Any small amounts left over we could toss into omelets or stir fry. Yum. I can't wait until the roast is done. I can already smell garlic all over the house.

This coming Thursday I am supposed to show up for jury duty, but I hope I don't have to go. I won't know until the night before on that, though. It is a big inconvenience for me to POSSIBLY be gone from work for a day but not to know whether I really will be or not. I know it is my duty to serve, but I think they ought to be able to organize it better than this. Arrgh!

No Spend Day and Cooking for the Lunch Challenge

January 9th, 2011 at 07:44 pm

So far, it has been a no-spend day for me. Hooray.

I have, however, been working on cooking all day. I made breakfast for the hubby and I. Yesterday, I bought 2 3-lb packages of ground beef and divided it up into patties and put them in the freezer. It takes a lot of work, but it is worth it since the large packages cost less per pound. Then, I got right to work on making my lunches. I made the following gluten free recipe for Chicken Cacciatore.

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Don't worry. If you want to make it, it's delicious. I spiced it up a bit by adding cumin, red pepper flakes, substituting roasted canned tomatoes for the can of tomatoes, and adding about 4 ounces of canned corn. Yummy. I made rice to go with it. I only needed enough for 5 lunches, but I got 5 lunches, plus a little extra. Yea for me!

If I had a digital camera, I would take a picture, but I don't.

I just found out a survey check is on the way. I should get it tomorrow or the next day.

Gluten Free Life

August 28th, 2010 at 01:41 am

I think I am gluten intolerant and probably have been for years. However, recently I have begun to feel worse than normal. A friend happened to mention "gluten intolerance" to me and wondered if I have it. Well, this morning while I had a few minutes, I did some searching for a list of symptoms and a symptom quiz. Well, I am pretty sure I have it. I am going to my doctor next week to discuss it, but I am already on a dairy free diet and have been since 2001. That has been very difficult to maintain, but it has been SO worth it. I was wondering if any of you have this problem and how do you cope with it in the way of buying different food while not going broke? So far, all the foods I have come up with to buy (outside of normal fruits and vegetables that I would buy anyway) are probably going to be more expensive. Anyone have any dairy free and gluten free recipes? This would likely be something for me only, as my hubby hates fruits and vegetables and definitely loves bread.

Suggestions For No Cook Dinners Anyone??

June 19th, 2010 at 01:18 am

Hello, everyone. I am in the midwest. Summer is starting to heat up and it's only going to get hotter. DH and I are talking about not doing any more cooking in the oven for the rest of the summer. So, I am sitting here with the beginnings of a shopping list trying to stuff to buy to make next week's meals. Here is what I have come up so far:

- Buy a rotisserie chicken and make chicken sandwiches with it (maybe 2 meals)
- Buy Some Already Cooked Beef at the Deli and Mix With BBQ sauce for sandwiches (1-2 meals)
- Egg Salad Sandwiches (1 meal)
- Peanut butter sandwiches (1 meal)

I just hate to eat sandwiches every single day, though. Any of have any good ideas for something besides sandwiches?? I should mention that DH hates what he calls rabbit food and he doesn't even want to cook pasta or hamburgers if we can get away with it. I just want to ask him if I have pointed ears and hop around on all fours.

For my lunches, I am thinking of possibly wraps with lunchmeat, lettuce, tomatoes, etc. along with a piece of fruit and a handful of nuts.

Frugal Lunch for A Week

October 25th, 2009 at 12:49 am

Howdy, neighbors. I am putting the finishing touches on my frugal lunch for next week. I don't normally cook my lunches until Sunday, but we are leaving to go to a nearby town to visit friends tomorrow. Here is my frugal lunch recipe.

1 9 oz can of chicken (I like Swanson's)

leftover carrots (need to use them up before they go bad) $0

2 qts. broth $2.58

1/2 pkg frozen spinach $.50

1 16 oz pkg frozen soup veggies

leftover mashed potatoes, for thickening $0

1 15 oz can cannelini beans $1.00

package of long grain rice $1.85

I am estimating that I can make about 5 servings of soup with this at about $1.66 per serving. Wow.

Very Frugal Dinner

October 24th, 2009 at 10:38 pm

I was reading a magazine article in the break room at work and saw a really cool article called "Meals for a Month" or something like that. Well, I made one of them tonight and modified it for our tastes. The one I made is called Chicken Posole. I added a can of blackeye peas which I put through the blender and some ground up carrots. This accomplished several goals: 1) thickened the soup - I hate thin, watery soup, 2) concealed the blackeyed peas from hubby - he hates them, and 3) added protein. I also added cumin, garlic, and italian seasoning. Here is the URL for the article.

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I just asked hubby what he thinks and he said "good but different." I myself thought it was excellent and was surprised at how well it turned out.

Just to make the point of how frugal it is, here is my tally:

hominy, 15 oz, $.89
broth, 32 oz., had on hand from a stock-up shopping trip, $0
1/2 onion, $.50
14 oz canned tomatoes, $1.14
15 oz canned blackeyed peas, hand on hand $0
spices, hand on hand $0
15 oz canned cannelini beans $1.00
carrots, leftover $0
Tyson refrigerated chicken strips (on $1.99 closeout - I had $0.55 coupon which was doubled to $1.00) $0.99

Total cost $5.07

I think we will be able to stretch it out for another meal each for him and I!

Free Campbell's Recipe Book

May 2nd, 2009 at 03:36 am

Howdy, friends and neighbors. I was browsing the web tonight, looking for free recipes to do something with canned chicken, noodles or rice, and any fresh vegetables I can find. I found this great free cookbook online at the Campbell's kitchen website. You can download it your computer. Just click on the left margin where it says "Campbell's Value Cookbook." By modifying a recipe I found on the website, I figured out I can make lunch for myself all next week for about $2.00 a day. Woo-eee!

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Tuna Chili

March 15th, 2009 at 10:30 pm

Well, hubby and I have decided to try not eating so much red meat. So, tonight I am experimenting by making one of our standby dinners with tuna instead of red meat. I think it tastes fine. It does taste a little different, but fine. Here's my "recipe." I hesitate to call it a recipe because I didn't spend hours perfecting it or anything.

Use a 6 quart soup or stock pot. Put about 2 inches of water in the bottom. Turn the burner on medium high heat.

3 tablespoons of dried onion. Fresh is better if you have it.
2 teaspoons of crushed red pepper, if you like it
2 tablespoons of garlic
2 tablespoons of celtic sea salt
2 tablespoons of black pepper

Cook these ingredients on medium high heat for about 15 minutes. Then, add the following:

2 15 oz cans of diced tomates
1 8 oz can of tomato sauce
3 15 oz cans of beans

I use a variety of types of beans: navy beans, great northern beans, black beans, red kidney beans, red beans, and dark red kidney beans. There may be a few others out there I haven't tried. I change it up every time I make chili, but this is the first time I have added tuna instead of hamburger.

After adding in the above ingredients, I also added 3 foil envelopes of tuna. I hate the kind in the can, as it tastes like the can.

Well, I will let you know later what dh thought of my creation. ;P


Well, hubby reports that he noticed that it tasted different, like something besides ground beef was in it. He didn't say that he really liked it, but he said it was okay and would not be averse to trying it again. Hooray for my non-beef cooking experiment!

Baked Chicken Recipe

March 16th, 2008 at 04:23 pm

Hi, everyone. Here is my Baked Chicken Recipe. I like to make this for lunches I take with me to work. It is much healthier and less expensive than eating out, and if you have food allergies like I do, it's not a problem because you cooked it.

Pieces of chicken (like chicken legs, chicken leg quarters, etc.)

Oil (I use organic olive oil, but any oil will do.)

Spices (Use whatever spices you like, but I find garlic, lemon pepper seasoning, rosemary, red peppers, salt, and pepper to be quite tasty. I change it up frequently just for interest.)

You can also add some kind of rice to your baking dish if you like.

I cook the chicken in a glass baking dish at 350 degrees for 1 hour. It is not only tasty, but I also get rave reviews from co-workers on how good it smells and wondering if I spent hours in the kitchen.