Gluten-Free Bacon Bread (Mastered!), Coconut Pecan Cinnamon Buns, and Cast-Iron Fry Biscuits!

Cast-Iron Fry Bread

This recipe is one of my all-time favorites. Only five ingredients, less than 5 minutes of prep and 12 minutes of baking time, its perfect for last minute company and simple enough to make every day, if desired. I often have a couple of these with coffee in the morning for breakfast. Or if I want to get fancier, I make scrambled eggs and fried potatoes. I also like these way better than dinner rolls to accompany soup.

  • Butter
  • All-Purpose Flour
  • Baking Powder
  • Salt
  • Buttermilk
  1. Preheat oven to 450°.
  2. Place 3 Tbsp of butter in a cast iron pan and place in oven for 2 minutes.
  3. In a measuring cup, place  1 1/2 tsp of baking powder and 1/2 tsp of salt and then fill the rest with all-purpose flour until it equals one cup altogether. Or, you can put 1 cup of all-purpose flour in a bowl and then take out 2 tsp of flour and then add the 1/2 tsp of salt and 1 1/2 tsp of baking powder. Or, you can use 1 cup of self-rising flour (which is exactly what I just described but prepared for you to buy in the store). I make this recipe often enough that I feel the extra cupboard space the little bag of flour takes up is worth the few minutes I save every time I make this recipe.
  4. In a bowl, combine flour (and salt and baking powder) and 1/2 cup of buttermilk. Dust clean and dry counter-top with more all-purpose flour. Turn dough onto flour and knead 4-5 times.
  5. I do this next part with my hands, but I’ll also tell you how you can do this “properly”. I rip off pieces that are relatively the same size and then pat them into little 2″ patties. I call them “rustic-looking”. Or, you can pat the dough out to 1/4″ thickness and cut a biscuit cutter.
  6. Place in the cast-iron in a single layer. Use a fork to turn biscuits over to coat in butter. Bake for 12 minutes.

Coconut Pecan Cinnamon Rolls

I really want to love cinnamon buns. I love cinnamon and I love the icing, but the sugar-addict in me never wanted to eat beyond the top. I find most cinnamon buns are dry and doughy. So I came up with this recipe. This recipe should make a LOT of icing. My logic behind it is this: If we saturate and bake the rolls in a soup of icing, they can’t possibly be dry, right? When you take the rolls out of the pan, there will be a sea of icing left behind. These rolls are gooey and messy, but SO good. Because they are so sweet, I only eat half or a quarter of one at a time, so I swear I’m probably eating less sugar overall than one whole, huge store-bought or bakery roll. Well, except for the fact that I usually eat the leftover icing out of the pan with a spoon…

  • Sugar – Both regular and icing/confectioners
  • Cinnamon
  • Tube of refrigerated breadsticks or cinnamon rolls
  • Butter
  • Vanilla
  • Whipping Cream
  • Milk or orange juice
  • Pecans
  • Can of evaporated milk
  • Egg yolks
  • Sweetened flaked coconut
  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Chop 1 cup of pecans. Bake 2/3 cups of chopped pecans in a single layer in a shallow pan for 8 minutes, stirring halfway through. Cool completely.
  2. Combine 1 Tbsp of sugar and 1/2 tsp of cinnamon in a small bowl. Remove breadstick or cinnamon roll dough from tube. Do not unroll it or take it apart. With a serrated knife, cut into 8 slices if using breadsticks or 10 slices if using cinnamon rolls. [The cinnamon rolls usually come in tubes of five, so cut each in half as if you were cutting open a dinner roll to spread butter.] Dip both sides of each slice in cinnamon-sugar.
  3. Place in a greased baking dish, NOT a baking sheet or else the icing will make a huge mess.
  4. Cook 1/3 can of evaporated milk, 1/2 cup of sugar, 2 lightly beaten egg yolks, and 1/3 cup of butter in pot over medium heat. Stir constantly for 15 minutes.
  5. Remove from heat. Stir in 2/3 cup of coconut, the toasted pecans, and 1 tsp of vanilla. Transfer mixture to bowl. Let stand, stirring occasionally, 45 minutes.
  6. This can be done by hand or with electric mixer. Combine 1 2/3 cup of icing sugar and 2/3 cup of butter. Mix slowly or on low until well blended and then increase spreed and mix for 3 minutes. Add 1/4 tsp of vanilla and 2 tsp of whipping cream and beat for 1 minute more. Add 1/2 tsp of milk (or orange juice) and mix slowly. If needed, add 1/2 tsp more.
  7. Carefully fold the two icing mixes together.
  8. Bake rolls without icing for 15 minutes. Take out of oven, pour icing on top, and sprinkle with remaining 1/3 cup of chopped pecans. Place back in oven to bake for 5 more minutes and then turn off the oven, but leave the rolls in there for the final 5 minutes. This allows the heat to continue baking the rolls without drying out the icing too much.

Gluten-Free Bacon Bread

If you follow me on Facebook, you may have read a status a while back about my failed attempt at this recipe. I was wrong, actually. The bread, though it looked like a pile of mush, tasted delicious. My mistake was not in the ingredients or even in the technique, but in the baking formation. When I make this bread avec gluten, I roll the dough into balls, assemble it in a sort of dome on a baking sheet, and bake it that way. The result is this mound of amazing that is easy to pull apart with ones fingers, which makes it ideal for parties. I tried to do the same thing sans gluten, but since garbanzo flour absorbs liquid differently than wheat flour, it kind of just looked like a pile of barf on my baking sheet. I tried again, but put it in a square baking dish, the one I usually use for Nanaimo bars, and it cooked more evenly resulting in better consistency.

  • Garbanzo Fava Bean Flour
  • Potato Starch
  • Tapioca Starch
  • Xanthan Gum
  • Coconut Palm Sugar
  • Dry Instant Yeast
  • Eggs
  • Canola Oil
  • Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Sea Salt
  • Bacon
  • Olive Oil
  • Mozzarella Cheese
  • Envelope of Ranch Salad Dressing Mix*
  1. Prepare a square baking pan with cooking spray and line with parchment paper. I used a 9″ x 9″.
  2. Whisk together 2 1/4 cups of garbanzo-fava flour, 1/2 cup of potato starch, 1/3 cup of tapioca starch, 2 1/4 tsp of xanthan gum, 1 Tbsp of palm sugar, and a packet of dry instant yeast. Set aside.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix together 1 1/4 cups of warm water, 2 eggs, 1/4 cup of canola oil, and 1 tsp of apple cider vinegar. Mix well. Add dry ingredients (except salt). Stir for about a minute, add 1 1/4 tsp of sea salt, and then mix for a couple minutes more. I use a wooden spoon to stir for this recipe as I feel like its the only thing I have strong enough to handle the thickness of the dough and still mix adequately.
  4. Cover and let rise in a warm place for 30 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, dice up 12 strips of bacon. Cook them over medium heat in a skillet for 5 minutes. They will seem a little uncooked, but that’s okay because they are going to be finished off while the bread is baking in the oven. Drain on paper towels.
  6. Shred 1 cup worth of mozzarella cheese.
  7. After the 30 minutes has passed for the dough, add 2 Tbsp of olive oil, bacon pieces, cheese, and envelope of ranch salad dressing mix and mix lightly.
  8. Turn batter into prepared baking pan. Cover and let rise in a warm place for another 30 minutes.
  9. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes. Cover with foil. Bake 10 minutes longer. Let cool in pan for 5 minutes. Then turn the pan to the side and scoot bread out a little so the steam can escape, but leave it in the pan. Let cool for another 10 minutes before removing from pan to cool completely. Eat within 3 days. Wrap in plastic and store on counter or in cupboard. Freeze leftovers (if there are any!) to use as yummy gluten-free croutons for future salads.

*Instead of buying an envelope of ranch salad dressing mix, mix together 1 tsp of dried parsley, 3/4 tsp of pepper, 1 tsp of seasoning salt, 1/2 tsp of garlic powder, 1/4 tsp of onion powder, and 1/8 tsp of dried thyme, and use that instead.

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Chocolate Panna Cotta Notta (Dinner for Two Week 17)

Breakfast: Olive Oil Granola, Breakfast Kabobs, Breakfast Treats, Cinnamon bun

Lunch: Black currants, blackberries, blueberries, dried plums

Dinner: Salsa Fish, ginger and garlic rice, zucchini or cauliflower

Dessert: Blueberry Pudding Cake or Chocolate Panna Cotta Notta

Chocolate Panna Cotta Notta

In a saucepan add 2 cups of almond milk and 4 tsp of agar agar powder. Let it sit for 5 minutes to allow agar agar to soften.

In a medium bowl add 1/4 cup of cocoa powder, 1/4 cup of coconut oil, and 1/4 cup of agave nectar. Stir to combine ingredients thoroughly and set aside.

Bring almond milk/agar mix and 1/2 tsp of vanilla extract to a simmer, then reduce and cook for 8 minutes.  Add chocolate mixture and stir to combine for 30 seconds.  Remove from heat.

Pour into 4 ramekins or small glasses.  (Use ramekins if you plan to turn out onto plates.  Use glasses if you intend to serve panna cotta’s in their own containers.)

Refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

To release panna cotta from ramekins – run a knife around edges of panna cotta and place individual ramekin into warm water for approximately 30 seconds.  Put plate on top of ramekin and turn over to release panna cotta from ramekin.

Top with chopped almonds and flaked coconut for extra flair.

*You can also use a vanilla bean, instead of vanilla extract in this recipe.  Split the vanilla bean and scrape the seeds.  Place the pod and seeds in the almond milk and agar agar mixture just before you start to simmer the mixture.  Remove the pods before adding in the chocolate.

Salsa Fish

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Coat 2 lbs of fish fillets in 1 cup of seasoned bread crumbs. Brown fillets in 1 Tbsp of vegetable oil in a skillet. Arrange in a greased baking dish. Top with 1 1/2 of salsa, 1/2 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese, and 1/2 cup of shredded provolone cheese.

Bake, uncovered, for 7-10 minutes.

Blueberry Pudding Cake

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Oil a circular deep ceramic pie or gratin dish.

In a mixer combine 3/4 cup of almond meal, 3/4 cup of gluten-free all-purpose flour, 1/4 tsp of xantham gum, 2 tsp of gluten-free baking powder and 1/4 tsp of salt. Mix on low speed until combined.
Mix 2/3 cup of soymilk (or regular skim), 1/3 cup of agave nectar, and 1/3 cup of egg whites in a smaller bowl. Add to the dry ingredients in the mixer and mix well to form the batter.

Place 2 cups of frozen blueberries on the bottom of the pre-oiled dish. Place the ceramic dish on top of a cookie sheet to catch drips during baking. Pour the batter on top of the berries. Mix 1/4 cup of turbinado sugar with 1 Tbsp of arrowroot. Sprinkle the sugar mixture on top of the batter. Pour the boiling water carefully on top of the whole thing and bake for 55-60 minutes. Let cool before serving.

Notes: 3/4 cup of regular all-purpose flour can be substituted for the gluten-free all-purpose flour mix and xantham gum if you are not on a gluten- or wheat-free diet. 

Refrigerate the leftovers. It’s great cold, especially with coffee!

Cornstarch can be substituted for arrowroot. 

For an extra special touch, make a batch of fresh whipped cream with a little agave nectar and a tsp of hazelnut or almond extract. Yum!

Olive Oil Granola

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.

In a large bowl, combine 3 cups of old-fashioned rolled oats, 1 1/2 cups of raw pistachios, 3/4 cup of pumpkin seeds, 1/2 cup of wheat germ, 1/2 cup of ground flax seed, 1 tsp of salt, 1/2 tsp of cinnamon and 1/2 tsp of cardamom, and mix together. In a small bowl, combine 1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil, 3/4 cup of pure maple syrup and 1/4 cup of light brown sugar, and whisk until fully combined. Add wet mixture to the oat mixture, and stir to fully coat.

Spread the granola mixture in an even, single layer on rimmed, parchment-lined baking sheets, working in batches if necessary.

Bake on the middle rack of the oven for 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. Stir 1 cup of shredded coconut into the mixture prior to the final 10 minutes of baking.

Remove from the oven and fully cool before serving. Store in an air tight container.

Breakfast Treats

Wrap plain smoked sausage with half a strip of bacon. Secure with a toothpick. Place in a baking dish and sprinkle with brown sugar. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.

Breakfast Kabobs

Cut a package of brown ‘n’ serve sausage links in half. Drain a can of pineapple chunks. Alternatively thread sausages, pineapple chunks, and mushrooms onto metal or soaked bamboo skewers. Brush with 2 Tbsp of melted butter and some maple syrup.

Grill, uncovered, over medium-hot heat, turning and basting with syrup, for 8 minutes. Serve with your favorite egg dish.

SHOPPING LIST:

Whipped cream

4 oz mozzarella cheese

4 oz provolone cheese

Soymilk (or regular skim)

Almond milk (unsweetened)

24 pack of eggs

Cinnamon buns

10 mushrooms

Zucchini

Cauliflower

Garlic

Ginger

Black currants

Blackberries

Pkg of brown ‘n’ serve sausage links

Plain smoked sausage

Bacon

2 lbs fish fillets (walleye, bass, or perch)

2 pkgs frozen blueberries

Can of pineapple chunks (20 oz)

Salsa

Ground flaxseed

Cardamom

Xanthum gum (or regular all-purpose flour)

Arrowroot

Turbinado sugar

Agar agar powder

Agave nectar

Hazelnut or almond extract

Dried plums

Almonds

[Also needed: butter, pure maple syrup, light brown sugar, salt, cinnamon, extra virgin olive oil, shredded/flaked coconut, gluten-free all-purpose flour, baking powder, seasoned bread crumbs, vegetable oil, vanilla extract, cocoa powder, coconut oil]

Salsa Sausage Quiche (Dinner for Two Week 3)

Breakfast: Quiche

Lunch: Roast beef sandwich, Chili burger, or Chili dog, Pretzel nuggets, Fig or Prune

Dinner: Chicken or Beef, Rice or Sweet potato, Bell pepper

Two Meals One Pot Take Three

Combine 2 cans of chili with beans, 2 cans of drained mixed vegetables, 2 drained cans of whole kernel corn, 2 cans of diced tomatoes, and 2 cans of green chilies in a pot. Add a dash of chili powder and a dash of garlic powder. Heat through.

  1. Cook hamburger patty. Toast a hamburger bun if desired. Spoon chili mixture onto hamburger patty. Top with leftover vegetables, cheese, and/or condiments if you have any or just eat as a chili burger.
  2. Cook a hot dog. Zap hot dog bun in microwave for 15-30 seconds. Spoon chili mixture onto hot dogs. Add leftover sauerkraut, onions, cheese, and/or condiments, if desired or just eat as a chili dog.

Sweet and Savory Brisket

  1. Cut a 3 to 3.5 lb beef brisket in half and place half in a slow cooker. Combine 1 cup of ketchup, 1/4 cup of grape jelly, an envelope of onion soup mix, and 1/2 tsp of pepper in a bowl. Spread half over meat in slow cooker. Top with the second half of the brisket and then the rest of the ketchup mixture.
  2. Cover and cook on low for 8-10 hours. Slice brisket and serve with cooking juices. The leftovers are great zapped in the microwave as well as made into a roast beef sandwich with a little mayo.

Artichoke Chicken

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Drain and chop a can of water-packed artichoke hearts. Combine artichokes, 3/4 cup of grated Parmesan cheese, 3/4 cup of mayonnaise, and a dash of garlic powder in a bowl. Place 4 chicken breasts in a greased baking dish. Spread with artichoke mixture. Bake, uncovered, for 30-35 minutes.

Salsa Sausage Quiche

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cook 3/4 lb bulk pork sausage in a skillet over medium heat. Drain. Transfer to an unbaked pastry shell. Sprinkle with 1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese. Lightly beat 3 eggs in a small bowl. Stir in 1 cup of salsa. Pour over cheese.
  2. Bake for 30-35 minutes. Sprinkle with another cup of cheese. Bake 5 minutes longer. Serve with extra salsa and sour cream.

Sweet Pretzel Nuggets

  1. Place a package of sourdough pretzel nuggets in a glass bowl. Combine 2/3 cup of vegetable oil, 1/3 of sugar, and 2 tsp of cinnamon in a small bowl. Pour over pretzels and toss to coat. Microwave, uncovered, for 2 minutes. Stir. Microwave 3-4 minutes longer, stirring after each minute. Cool to room temperature.

Note: It is sometimes hard to find sourdough pretzel nuggets. Regular pretzels can be used instead. One time I cut up sourdough bread into bite-sized pieces and toasted it before tossing with the oil, sugar, and cinnamon. 

SHOPPING LIST:

Sour cream (smallest one)

Cheddar cheese (8 oz)

Parmesan cheese

Eggs

Hamburger buns

Hot dog buns

6 bell peppers

6 sweet potatoes or yams

6 prunes (dried go well in salads, but eating fresh is great too)

6 figs (dried go well in salad, but fresh are great too)

Beef brisket (3-3.5 lb)

3/4 lb bulk pork sausage

4 boneless skinless chicken breast halves

Hot dogs

Unbaked pastry shell (9 inches)

Hamburger patties

Can of water-packed artichokes hearts

2 cans of chili with beans

2 cans of mixed vegetables

2 cans of whole kernel corn

2 cans of diced tomatoes

2 cans of green chilies

Cinnamon

Garlic powder

Mayonnaise

Ketchup

Grape jelly

Salsa (2 cups worth)

Pkg of sourdough pretzel nugget (15-18 oz)

Vegetable oil

[Also needed: Sugar, Onion soup mix, Pepper]

Week 46

Shopping List:

Tube of refrigerated buttermilk biscuits

2-3 oz mozzarella cheese

Pizza sauce

12 cherry tomatoes

1 lb smoked turkey sausage (fully cooked)

2 green peppers

Onion

Rice

Envelope of Italian salad dressing mix

6 hoagie buns

12-16 oz of sliced luncheon meat (I got a variety of salami, ham, and turkey)

12 thin slices of cheese (I got a variety of Swiss, cheddar, and brick)

Bag of chips (Plain pairs the best as a side dish so it doesn’t overwhelm the main attraction of the meal)

Jar of pickles

5 figs

[Also needed: oregano, butter]

 

Lunch: Sandwich, chips, pickles, a fig, and mozzarella puffs

Dinner: Kabobs with rice

 

Hot Hoagies

Combine 3/4 cup of softened butter and an envelope of Italian salad dressing mix. Spread 1 Tbsp inside each of 6 hoagie buns. On bottom of each bun, layer one slice of meat, two slices of cheese, and another slice of meat. Replace tops. Spread 1 Tbsp of butter mixture over top of each bun.

Place on a baking sheet. Broil 6 inches from the heat for 2-3 minutes. Eat with chips and pickles.

 

Colorful Kabobs

Cut 1 lb of fully cooked smoked turkey sausage into 1/2 inch chunks. Cut 2 green peppers into 1 inch pieces. Cut an onion into wedges. Thread a cherry tomato onto six metal or soaked wooden skewers. Alternate the sausage, green pepper, and onion wedges on skewers, ending with another tomato.

Grill, uncovered, over medium-hot heat for 10-15 minutes. Remove meat and vegetables from skewers and serve over rice.

 

Mozzarella Puffs

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Take apart a refrigerated tube of buttermilk biscuits and make an indentation in the center of each biscuit. Sprinkle with 1 tsp of dried oregano. Cut a 2-3 oz block of mozzarella cheese into 10 cubes, 3/4 inch each. Place a cube in the center of each biscuit. Pinch dough tightly around cheese to seal.

Place seam side down on an ungreased baking sheet Spread 2 Tbsp of pizza sauce over tops. Bake 10-12 minutes.

 

Week 43 – Bonus Recipe!

Shopping List:

10 flour tortillas

1 lb ground beef

2 onions

Can of condensed vegetable soup

Can of condensed cream of chicken soup

Chow mein noodles

3-4 lb boneless beef chunk roast

16 oz jar of dill pickles

Hamburger buns

Toasted pumpkin seeds

5 radishes

7 mushrooms

Red pepper

Kale

Eggs

[Also needed: cinnamon, sugar, nutmeg, vegetable oil, chili sauce, garlic. Buy a half liter of cream this week – get fat-free half-and-half, if you can]

 

Breakfast: Quiche

Lunch: Sandwich, pumpkin seeds, and cinnamon strips

Dinner: Casserole

 

Vegetable Quiche

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Grease a pie dish with cooking spray and set aside.

Heat 2 Tbsp of olive oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Dice 1/2 an onion and thinly slice 2-3 radishes and throw in pan with oil. Let the onion cook until slightly translucent, but without browning, about 2-3 minutes.

Stir in 2 cups of sliced mushrooms, season with salt and fresh ground pepper, and cook until their liquid has fully evaporated, 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add 2 minced garlic cloves and 1/2 diced red pepper, and cook for 3 more minutes. Stir in 2 cups of kale with the center rib removed and then shredded, and continue to cook until kale begins to wilt, about 2 minutes. Remove pan from heat and set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk 4 eggs until light and fluffy. Whisk in 1 cup of fat-free half-and-half cream, 1/2 tsp of nutmeg, salt, and pepper.

Add the cooked vegetables to the pie dish. Top with egg mixture.

Bake 30-35 minutes.

Serve warm or at room temperature.

 

Dilly Beef Sandwiches

Cut a 3-4 lb boneless beef chunk roast in half and place in a slow cooker. Add a 16 oz jar of dill pickles with juice, 1/2 cup of chili sauce, 2 minced garlic cloves, and 2-3 thinly sliced and chopped radishes. Cover and cook on low for 8-9 hours.

Discard pickles. Remove roast. When cool enough to handle, shred the meat. Return to the sauce and heat through. Using a slotted spoon, fill a bun with about 1/2 cup of meat mixture.

 

Saucy Beef Casserole

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook 1 lb of ground beef, a medium chopped onion, and a thinly sliced radish in a skillet over medium heat. Drain. Stir in a can of condensed cream of chicken soup and a can of condensed vegetable soup. Transfer to a greased baking dish.

Cover and bake for 25-30 minutes. Uncover and sprinkle with 3/4 cup of chow mein noodles. Bake 5 minutes longer.

 

Fried Cinnamon Strips

Combine 1 cup of sugar, 1 tsp of ground cinnamon,  and 1/4 tsp of nutmeg in a large Ziplock and set aside. Cut 10 8 inch flour tortillas into 3″x2″ strips. Heat 1 inch of oil in a skillet or electric fry pan to 375 degrees. Fry 4-5 strips at a time for 30 seconds on each side. Drain on paper towels.

While still warm, place strips in bag with sugar mixture. Shake gently to coat. Eat right away or in an air-tight container.

Week 42

Shopping List:

1 lb chicken breasts

Sour cream and onion potato chips

Spicy brown mustard

Orange

2 lb ham steak

2 cans of great northern beans (15 oz each)

2 jars of picante sauce (16 oz each)

Chicken (You need 4 cups of cooked cubed chicken. Buy a whole cooked chicken and shred it. Buy it from the deli. Use leftovers. Cook a couple extra chicken breasts. Whatever method works best for the prices in your area)

Ground cumin

Monterey Jack cheese

Corn chips

Your favorite bread or buns

Pineapple

Radicchio

Treat yourself to an Egg McMuffin one time this week. Just for fun 🙂

[Also needed: ranch salad dressing, honey]

 

Breakfast: Muffin

Lunch: Chili, chicken bites, and pineapple slices

Dinner: Ham, potatoes, and radicchio

 

Chicken Chili

Combine 2 15 oz cans of rinsed and drained great northern beans, 2 16 oz jars of picante sauce, 4 cups of cubed cooked chicken, and 2 tsp of ground cumin. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Sprinkle individual servings with shredded Monterey Jack cheese. Eat with crunchy corn chips and warm bread.

 

Tangy Ham Steak

Combine 1/3 cup of spicy mustard, 1/4 cup of honey, and 1/2 tsp of grated orange peel in a small bowl. Brush over one side of a 2 lb ham steak. Broil or grill, uncovered, over medium-hot heat for 7 minutes. Turn and brush with mustard mixture. Cook for about 7 minutes.

 

Ranch Chicken Bites

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut 1 lb of chicken breasts into bite-size pieces. Place in a bowl. Add 1/2 cup of ranch salad dressing and stir to coat. Let stand for 10 minutes. Add 2 1/2 cups of finely crushed sour cream and onion potato chips and toss well. Place on a greased baking sheet. Bake, uncovered, for 15-20 minutes.

Week 34 – Bonus Recipe!

Shopping List:

Can of apricot halves

Orange juice concentrate

Pint lemon sherbet

4 chicken breasts

12 pepperoni slices

Mozzarella cheese

Can of pizza sauce

Fresh parsley

4 hamburger buns

Can of pineapple slices

Cheddar cheese

Mushrooms

Lemon

[Buy a half liter of milk this week. Also needed: peanut butter]

 

Breakfast: Muffin

Lunch: Sandwich and a glass of lemon water

Dinner: Chicken, rice, and sauteed mushrooms

Dessert: Apricot drink

 

Frothy Apricot Drink

(This recipe yields 4 cups of drink. Only make what you can drink so I would recommend quartering or halving the whole recipe)

Place a can of apricot halves with juice, 1/2 cup of milk, and 1/4 cup of orange juice concentrate in a blender. Cover and process until smooth. Add a pint of lemon sherbet. Cover and process just until combined. Pour into glasses and drink immediately.

 

Pizza Chicken Roll-Ups

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Flatten 4 chicken breasts to 1/4 inch thickness. Place 3 slices of pepperoni and 1 slice of mozzarella cheese on each. Roll up tightly. Secure with toothpicks. Place in a greased baking dish. Spoon pizza sauce over roll-ups.

Cover and bake for 35-40 minutes. Uncover and top with 4 more slices of mozzarella cheese. Bake 5-10 minutes longer. Sprinkle with minced fresh parsley.

 

Peanut Pineapple Bun

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place a hamburger bun, cut side up, on a baking sheet. Spread with peanut butter. Place a pineapple slice on the bottom half and a slice of cheddar cheese on the top. Bake for 5-7 minutes. Place cheese-topped buns over pineapple.

 

[Over the last couple months I had come $3-$7 under budget on each grocery trip. Instead of spending it on additional items, I put it away in a jar until I had enough to buy the ingredients for these delicious muffins! It costs about $30 total, but I had a lot of leftover ingredients to use for other things later.]

 

Healthy Carrot and Apple Muffins

Preheat oven to 375°F and line standard-sized muffin pan with muffin cups. In a medium bowl, whisk together 2 eggs, 1/2 cup of maple syrup, 1/2 cup of olive oil, 6 oz of yogurt, and 2 tsp of vanilla. Set aside. In a large bowl, stir together 1/2 cup of quick-cooking oats, 2 cups of whole wheat flour, 2 tsp of baking soda, 1/4 tsp of ground nutmeg, 1/2 tsp of ground cinnamon, 1 tsp of ground ginger, and 1/2 tsp of salt until thoroughly mixed. Pour wet ingredients into dry and mix until all ingredients are evenly moistened. Stir in 3 peeled and grated carrots, 2 peeled and grated apples, and 1/2 cup of dried fruit (I used raisins, cranberries, and cherries).

In a small bowl, use a pastry cutter or fork to press together 1 Tbsp of cold butter, 1 Tbsp of brown sugar, and 1 Tbsp of flour until crumbly. Add 2 Tbsp of oats, 2 Tbsp of sesame seeds, and 1 Tbsp of ground flaxseed, and press together until they form a uniform crumbly mixture.

Fill each muffin cup almost to the top with batter.  Sprinkle a spoonful of the topping over each muffin.  Bake for 20-22 minutes.

Week 10

Shopping List:

Tube of refrigerated pizza dough

Jar of sauerkraut

Thousand Island dressing

4 slices of corned beef

4 slices of Swiss cheese

Cheese-flavored snack crackers (like Goldfish, Ritz, or Cheez-Its)

4 chicken breasts (I always mean boneless skinless halves unless I state otherwise)

Small sour cream

Onion

8 oz jar of process cheese sauce (like Cheez Whiz)

1 lb of thinly sliced cooked roast beef (if you have some leftover from last week, use that instead!)

6 French or Italian sandwich buns

3 or 4 chayote squashes

5 nectarines

Old fashioned oats

 

Breakfast: Pumpkin oatmeal if you have any left. If not, go back to old-fashioned oats with nuts and whatever toppings you have on hand. Cup of coffee.

Lunch: Sandwich, reuben pastries, a nectarine, crackers, and leftover cheese

Dinner: Chicken, rice, and chayote squash

 

Cheesy Beef Buns

Chop up an onion. Saute it in a skillet with 2 Tbsp of butter. Stir in 8 oz of Cheez Whiz until melted. Cook and stir until heated through. Stir in 1 lb of thinly sliced (already cooked) roast beef until evenly coated.

Spoon onto 6 French or Italian buns. Wrap each in aluminum foil. They can now be stored in the fridge or freezer until you are ready to eat one. Bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes or until bread is crispy.

 

Cheesy Chicken

Place 1 Tbsp of melted butter in a microwave-safe dish and set aside. Combine 1 cup of crushed cheese-flavored crackers and 1/4 tsp of pepper. In a separate dish, melt 4 Tbsp of butter and dip each chicken breast in it. Spread each breast with sour cream (1/2 cup to cover all 4 chicken breasts). Now roll in the crumb mixture.

Place in the prepared dish. Cover loosely and microwave for 6-7 minutes. Make sure it’s cooked all the way through as older microwaves aren’t always as powerful. Let stand for 5-10 minutes before serving. This is important. Meat continues to cook in the pan even after it has been removed from the heating source if it is not disturbed too much. Try not to cut into it too much. If you have to take a peek to see if its done, make a clean, small slit on the thickest part to take a look. Try not to let too many juices out!

 

Reuben Roll Ups

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Roll a tube of refrigerated pizza dough into a rectangle. Cut into 8 rectangles. Combine 1 cup of well drained sauerkraut and 1 Tbsp of Thousand Island dressing. Place half a slice of corned beef on each rectangle and top with about 2 Tbsp of the sauerkraut mixture and then half a slice of Swiss cheese. Roll up.

Place with seam side down on a greased baking sheet. Bake for 12-14 minutes.

 

Chayote Squash

Peel and eat it raw! It tastes like a cross between a cucumber and a pear. There is a seed in the middle you won’t want to eat, but everything else is edible. You can also roast it with a little bit of olive oil, sea salt, and pepper and it is a little more squash-like. Delicious and good for you either way!

Week 6

Shopping List:

1 lb of ground turkey

Bran cereal

Ketchup

Grape jelly

Lemon juice

1 3/4 lbs boneless top round steak (you may have to ask the butcher for it and if they don’t have it, ask for something similar)

Apricot preserves (You’ll find it in the jelly section. It’s like jam but with extra fruit chunks in it)

Steak sauce

Shake n Bake seasoned coating mix

1 lb of ground beef

Hamburger buns

Lettuce

Lime

Broccoli

Almond milk

 

Breakfast: Bran cereal with almond milk

Lunch: Burger or turkey meatballs with rice and a glass of water with a wedge of lime to liven things up a bit

Dinner: Steak, half a hamburger bun with butter, lettuce and broccoli salad with honey mustard dressing

 

Turkey Meatballs

Combine 1 lb of ground turkey and 1/4 cup of bran cereal in a bowl and mix well. Shape into 1 inch balls. Combine 1 14 oz bottle of ketchup, 1 cup of grape jelly, and 3 Tbsp of lemon juice in a Dutch oven and bring to a boil. Add meatballs. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for 30-35 minutes, stirring several times.

 

Apricot Round Steak

Place steak on broiler pan rack and broil for 6-8 minutes on each side. Meanwhile, in a pot, combine 3/4 cup of apricot preserves, 1 Tbsp of lemon juice, 1/2 tsp of salt and 1/8 tsp of hot pepper sauce. Cook until preserves are melted. Set aside 1/2 cup and brush remaining sauce over steak.

Broil 2 minutes longer. Slice meat on the diagonal and serve with remaining apricot sauce.

 

Oven-Baked Burgers

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine 1/4 cup of steak sauce and 2 Tbsp of Shake n Bake in a bowl. Crumble beef over mixture and mix until combined. Shape into 4 patties. Measure out 1/3 cup of Shake n Bake. Dip both sides of patties in coating.

Place on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes, turning once. Serve on buns with lettuce, leftover cheese if you have any, and/or mustard and/or BBQ sauce, if you want.