Menu Plan Monday

Main Meals
Copycat Panera Broccoli Cheddar Soup, Baking Powder Biscuits
Baked Chicken, Rice, Green Beans
Leftovers from Thanksgiving
Lasagna Casserole, salad
Homemade Pizza, raw veggies
Leftovers from Thanksgiving

Of course, I have all kinds of yummy Thanksgiving food in the works…

Thanksgiving morning, we’ll be having our traditional Apple Baked French Toast

For our big yummy meal (of which we will surely have leftovers for a very looooonggg time), I’m making:
turkey, stuffing, green bean casserole, brussel sprouts (My hubby’s the only one who loves these, but I love him…hence, they’re on the menu!) potato filling, sweet potato casserole, rolls, cranberry relish, and pumpkin pie.  So far, I think that’s all  🙂

Have a blessed Thanksgiving with your family as you reflect on the many blessings from the Lord!


Menu Plan Monday

We were so blessed this week by a HUGE food shower for seminary students.  God was so good in blessing us with so much food!  Because of that food shower, we’re able to eat mostly from our cupboards and stockpile again.  I plan to make a quick trip to ALDI for produce, meat, and a few other odds and ends to complete our meals for the week. 

Main Meals

Hawaiin Crockpot Chicken, rice, salad

French dip subs, salad

Roasted Shrimp, Tomatoes & Feta, rice, veggies

Bacon Wrapped Apple BBQ chicken, roasted potatoes, veggies


Breakfast for dinner

Dinner at friends’ home

Are you looking for new lunch ideas?  I’m not sure where I got the idea, but my new favorite lunch (or in my case supper since Jared works 2nd shift) is spinach salad with hardboiled eggs, dried cranberries, and feta cheese.  Yummy!

linking up with Menu Plan Monday

Menu Plan Monday

I’m doing my best not to go grocery shopping this week, except for a few essentials.  I stopped in at ALDI last week for some produce, etc. and we have what we need.  We’re eating from the freezer and the cupboard supplies this week.  I’m afraid I wasn’t too creative with a menu plan…but this is what I came up with.

Main Meals:
Stuffed Cabbages (leftovers), salad
Lasagna (leftovers), veggies
BBQ chicken (from freezer), rice, veggies
Broccoli soup, Baking Powder Biscuits
Spaghetti, garlic bread, salad
Breakfast for supper
Italian chicken (from freezer), potatoes, salad

Freezer Cooking:
Banana Caramel Pecan Bread
Morning Glory Muffins
Mini Apple Pies
something with pumpkin..suggestions?

linking up with Menu Plan Monday

Menu Plan Monday

It’s another week of eating what we have from the freezer and cooking with what’s in the pantry.  (Can I just say this saves oodles on the grocery bill!)  I’m planning on going grocery shopping this week for ingredients for tasty meals to serve Jared’s family when they’re here next week!  It’ll be fun to cook for them.  🙂

Main Meals:
BBQ pork roast, mashed potatoes, salad
Taco Twist Casserole (from freezer), salad
Cheesy Chicken Empanadas (from freezer), raw veggies, fruit
Zesty Marinated Chicken (from freezer), veggies, rice
Steak, veggies, roasted potatoes
Mexican Chalupas, cottage cheese fluff, raw veggies

Linking up with Menu Plan Monday

Menu Plan Monday

Main Meals:
Asian BBQ Chicken (from freezer), potatoes, green beans
One Pot Macaroni & Cheese, raw veggies, fruit
Cheesy Chicken Empanadas, raw veggies, fruit
Taco Twist Bake (*recipe coming soon!*), salad
Chicken Pot Pie
Slow Cooker Potato Soup
, salad, Baking Powder Biscuits (*recipe coming soon!*)
Breakfast for Supper

Freezer Cooking:
Pumpkin Baked Oatmeal
Pull Apart Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Bread
Banana Muffins
Cheesy Chicken Empanadas (With our crazy week last week, these didn’t get done!)

linking up with Menu Plan Monday

Yummy Smoothies!

I *love* making homemade fruit smoothies!  I’ve been known to drink them for breakfast, a snack, or even my dinner meal (we eat our big meal at lunchtime since Jared works 2nd shift).  I love that I can use whatever fruit I have on hand to mix up a filling and tasty concoction!

I freeze fruit in quart size Ziploc bags; having the fruit frozen and ready to go for smoothie-making is soooo handy!  (note:  This time of year is a great time to buy fruit while it is on its end of season sale…go visit your local Farmer’s Market to see what deals you can find…) 

I throw a handful of yummy, frozen fruit in a bowl…

Now comes the sneaky part…making the fruit smoothie even more nutritious!  I always put flax-seed in mine, usually throw in spinach, and occasionally add grated carrots as well!  I promise, you won’t taste the spinach.  (Depending on how many carrots you add, you might taste them a bit…but it really doesn’t bother me.  I love the fact that I am eating veggies and barely tasting them!)

Next, I add the milk.  When we have soy, almond, or coconut milk, I use them.  (a quick side note on alternative milks:  I have used them in making *my favorite* The Perfect Iced Coffee…and it tasted just fine and dandy!)  However, we don’t always have that on hand…so regular milk works just fine too.

You can add more or less of any of the ingredients for the taste and consistency you desire.  (I never measure any of my ingredients.)

One of my favorite kitchen gadgets is my immersion blender; I love how small it is for storage and how easy it is to clean!  I mix everything up in a bowl and pour into my favorite cup…

There are countless fruit soothie variations…google or Pinterest for a recipe, and you’re sure to come up with a yummy conglomeration of fruits!  One I often make is strawberries, blueberries, and peaches (with the added nutritional punch of spinach, etc.).  I also like the watermelon frosty. 

I recently came up with an INCREDIBLE tasting smoothie using peaches, vanilla soy milk, flax seed, and spinach.  Promise, promise, promise you won’t taste the spinach; in fact, the smoothie tastes like a peach milkshake.  Mmmmmmm, mmmmmm, mmmmm.  I’m pretty convinced the secret ingredient is the silk soymilk!

What’s your favorite smoothie recipe?  Do you sneak veggies in too?

Cookin’ in the Crock: Homemade Greek Yogurt

I honestly never thought I’d try this.  I’m a little bit squirmish about warm milk, actually…I’m *really* squirmish about warm milk.  I have an aversion to the smell, and I honestly didn’t know if I could stomach a yogurt making process. 

But…I found this Crockpot Greek Yogurt recipe over at Save Money, Live Joyfully, and I decided to try it!  She really did a tremendous job helping me through the scary yogurt making process with easy to follow step by step directions!

A very simple recipe that tastes yummy and is made in a crock pot!  Can it get any better???

I poured 1/2 gallon whole milk (This made 32 oz of yogurt) into my crocpot and cooked it on low for 2 1/2 hr. 

After the 2 1/2 hr. was up, I unplugged the good ole’ crock and let the yucky warm milk sit in the crock, with the lid on, for another 3 hr.

After the 3 hr was up, I ladled out 2 cup of the stinky milk and whisked in 1/2 a cup of yogurt.  Since I didn’t have any homemade yogurt preserved (since I’ve never made it before), I used an individual serving size cup of Chobani Greek yogurt.  (As I continue to make yogurt, I’ll just use 1/2 cup of my own homemade yummy-ness!)  After I had the Chobani incorporated with the milk, I dumped the mixture back into the crockpot. 

I covered the trusty crock with a big ole bath towel and let it sit like that overnight.

In the morning, it was time to strain my new yogurt!  I layered several paper towels in the bottom of my strainer, plopped the strainer in a bowl, and dumped in the newly made yogurt.  Then, I covered the bowl/strainer/yogurt contraption with plastic wrap and refrigerated it for another day.  I believe it would have been ready after a few hours, but I actually forgot about it!  🙂

After another day in the fridge, it was very thick…just like Greek yogurt should be!

I lifted the strainer off the bowl to find that it had drained nicely overnight…

I scraped the yogurt into a big bowl and added honey…

Y-U-M-M-Y!!!!  I was skeptical, and hubby is very picky about his yogurt…but we both love this!  It’s great to eat with fresh fruit, granola, or in our smoothies!

As for cost comparison…If I find milk on sale, I can make the yogurt for around $1.20 for 32 oz.  I can also buy yogurt for that price with coupons (if not less); however, the homemade benefit sells me on this yogurt.

Let me know if you try it…I’m pretty sure you’ll enjoy it!  🙂