Cordon Bleu Stromboli – $2.58/serving

Loaf of frozen French or white bread, thawedphoto 2 (8)

Butter

8 oz deli ham

5 oz deli chicken

Swiss cheese

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F
  2. Shred 1/2 cup of Swiss cheese
  3. Knead on a lightly floured surface and roll into a rectangle
  4. Layer ham, cheese, and chicken
  5. Roll into a long log. Pinch the seams and tuck the ends. Place on a greased baking sheet. Cover and let sit for 20 minutes. Bake for 25-30 minutes. Refrigerate leftovers.

Advertisements

Orange Pecan Salad

2 oranges or a can of mandarin oranges

Leaf lettuce

Pecan halves

Peach yogurt

Mayonnaise

  1. Preheat oven to 300°
  2. Peel and cube oranges or drain can of mandarin oranges
  3. Toast 1/4 cup of pecan halves on a greased baking sheet for 5 minutes.
  4. Wash and chop up a few leaf lettuce leaves.
  5. Flip over the pecan halves and toast 5 more minutes.
  6. Combine 1/2 cup of peach yogurt and 3 Tbsp of mayonnaise.
  7. Toss together oranges, lettuce, and pecans. Drizzle with dressing immediately before eating.

Variations:

  • Can also use almonds, pistachios, or sunflower kernels instead of pecans
  • Grapefruit, kiwi, apples, or grapes instead of oranges
  • Orange yogurt instead of peach yogurt
  • Plain yogurt with marmalade instead of peach yogurt
  • Add chicken salad or grilled chicken on top to make it a complete meal!

Potato Sloppy Joe Bake (Dinner for Two Week 28)

Breakfast: Super Duper Healthy Breakfast Cookies, Potato Sloppy Joe Bake
Lunch: Bean Burritos, Herbed Cheese and Tomato Sandwich, banana, dark chocolate, and mangoes, nectarines, oranges
Dinner: Roast Chicken with Potatoes and Butternut Squash and asparagus, avocado, broccoflower, broccoli
Dessert: Peach Crisp
Roast Chicken with Potatoes and Butternut Squash
  1. Preheat oven to 400°.
  2. Combine 1 1/2 Tbsp pf minced garlic, 1/2 tsp of salt, 1/2 tsp of pepper, and 1/2 tsp of dried rubbed sage in a small bowl. Remove and discard giblets and neck from chicken. Starting at neck cavity, loosen skin from breast and drumsticks by inserting fingers, gently pushing between skin and meat. Lift wing tips up and over back; tuck under chicken. Rub garlic mixture under loosened skin. Place chicken, breast side up, on rack of a broiler pan coated with cooking spray. Place rack in broiler pan.
  3. Cut 12 oz of red potatoes into wedges. Cube and peel 8 oz of butternut squash – should end up with 1 1/2 cups.
  4. Combine potatoes, squash, butter, 1 1/2 teaspoons garlic, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Arrange vegetable mixture around chicken. Bake at 400° for 1 hour or until a thermometer inserted into meaty part of thigh registers 165°. Let stand 10 minutes. Discard skin.
Herbed Cheese and Tomato Sandwich
Spread 1 Tbsp of spicy brown mustard on an English muffin. Add 1/4 cup of cottage cheese on one half. Sprinkle with 1 Tbsp of chopped chives and garlic powder to taste. On the other half, add 2 slices of tomatoes, 1/4 of a sliced avocado, and a leaf of butter lettuce.
Potato Sloppy Joe Bake
  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Cook 1 lb of ground beef in a skillet over medium heat. Drain. Add a can of sloppy joe sauce and a can of cream of potato soup. Place a package of frozen cubed hashbrown potatoes in a greased baking dish. Top with beef mixture.
  3. Cover and bake for 20 minutes. Uncover. Bake 10 minutes longer. Sprinkle with cheese.
Bean Burritos
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cook enough long grain rice to equal 1 cup. Combine a can of refried beans, 1 cup of salsa, rice, and 1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese in a bowl. Spoon about 1/3 cup off-center of each of the 12 flour tortillas. Fold the sides and ends over filling and roll up.
Arrange burritos in a greased baking dish. Sprinkle with 1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese. Cover and bake for 20-25 minutes.
Peach Crisp
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Peel and roughly chop peaches directly into baking dish. You can use a vegetable peeler and a paring knife, but you can also blanch stone fruits to get the skin off.
In a food processor, blend 1/2 cup of flour, 3/4 cup of brown sugar, a pinch of salt, and 6 Tbsp of chilled cubed butter or Earth Balance with several on-off pulses or only until the mixture looks like a coarse meal. Add 1 cup of quick or rolled oats and pulse a few more times to break them up.
Spread topping over fruit. Bake for 45-55 minutes. Depending on the juiciness of the fruit and how full you filled your dish, you may want to put some foil below the pan in the oven to catch any overflow.

Super Duper Healthy Breakfast Cookies

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a bowl mix 1 cup of rolled oats, 1/4 cup of almond meal, 2 Tbsp of chia seeds, 1 cup of coconut flakes, 1/2 cup of chopped mixed nuts, 1 cup of mixed dried fruit, 1/2 tsp of salt, 1 1/2 tsp of cinnamon, and 1/2 tsp of allspice.  In a separate bowl, mash 3 bananas with a fork until it’s all gooey.  Add 1/2 cup of applesauce and 1 tsp of vanilla.  Add the wet ingredients to the dry ones, and mix until is well incorporated.  If the mixture seems too dry, just add more applesauce.  Place heaping tablespoon-fulls onto a cookie sheet, mold into rounds, and press down slightly.  Bake for 20 minutes.

 

SHOPPING LIST:

Butter or Earth Balance

Low-fat cottage cheese

12 flour tortillas (6-7″)

English muffins

Lemon

3 mangoes

2 bunches of bananas

8 peaches

6 nectarines

6 oranges

Tomato

Chives

Asparagus

4 avocados

Broccoflower

Broccoli

Butter lettuce

Butternut squash

12 oz red potatoes

1 lb ground beef

3.5 lb roasting chicken

Pkg of frozen cubed hashbrown potatoes (32 oz)

Can of sloppy joe sauce (15.5 oz)

Can of condensed cream of potato soup (11 oz)

Unsweetened applesauce

Spicy brown mustard

Dried rubbed sage

Dark chocolate

[Also needed: cheddar cheese, rolled oats, almond meal, chia seeds, coconut flakes, mixed nuts (pecans), mixed dried fruit (raisins/blueberries), salt, cinnamon, allspice, vanilla extract, flour, brown sugar, garlic, pepper, cooking spray, butter]

Blueberry Fest! (Dinner for Two Week 27)

Breakfast: High Protein Apple Squares or Healthy Glazed Lemon-Blueberry Scones

Lunch: Leftovers + apricot or cantaloupe

Dinner: BBQ Beef Patties with potatoes and purple cabbage or carrots or Chicken Nugget Casserole with spaghetti and salad

Dessert: Gluten-Free Blueberry Cobbler

Gluten-Free Blueberry Cobbler

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  In a large bowl gently toss together 16 oz of fresh or frozen blueberries, 1/4 cup of sugar, 1 Tbsp of cornstarch and 1 Tbsp of lemon juice.  Pour into a buttered baking dish. Grind enough slivered blanched almonds in a food processor to equal 1 cup or measure out 1 cup of almond meal. In another bowl mix together ground almonds/almond meal, 4 Tbsp of butter, 1/4 cup of sugar, an egg and a pinch of salt until well combined.  There’s really no simple way to spread the mixture on top of the blueberries, so I recommend just digging in with your fingers and spreading across the top as evenly as possible.  Bake for 25-35 minutes.  Let cool at least 10 minutes before eating.  Serve hot or at room temperature with vanilla ice cream!

High Protein Apple Squares

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a baking pan with nonstick cooking spray. Combine 1 cup of vanilla whey protein powder, 1/2 cup of buckwheat flour, 2 tsp of cinnamon, 1/4 tsp of cloves, 1/8 tsp of cardamom, 1/8 tsp of nutmeg, and 2 tsp of baking powder in a large bowl.

Combine 6 packets of Stevia, 3/4 cup of fat-free cottage cheese, 2 tsp of vanilla extract, and 1/2 cup of egg whites (about 4 eggs-worth) in a separate bowl. Look to see if your vanilla whey protein powder is sweetened. If it isn’t, you will need to add more Stevia. Mix well to combine. There will be lots of cottage cheese chunks and yes, they will be visible in the squares after they are baked. This is precisely the kind of thing that would gross my boyfriend out so I would throw it all in a blender to smooth everything out.

Remove the core of a tart apple and using either a box grater with large holes or a food processor, grate the apple into a bowl. Set aside. Pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and stir to incorporate evenly. Finally, pour the apple into the bowl and stir again to combine.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 20 minutes.

Let the pan cool slightly, then remove the entire cake from the pan and cut into 16 squares.

Healthy Glazed Lemon-Blueberry Scones

Preheat oven to 400°F. Spray a baking sheet with nonstick spray.

Put 1 cup of all-purpose flour, 1 cup of whole wheat flour, 1 Tbsp of sugar, 1 Tbsp of baking powder, 1/2 tsp of baking soda, 1/4 tsp of salt and 1 Tbsp of lemon zest in the bowl of a food processor or into a medium mixing bowl and pulse or stir until well blended. Add 1/4 cup of chilled and cubed butter and 1/4 cup of olive or canola oil and pulse or stir with a wire whisk or fork until crumbly. If you’re using a food processor, transfer the mixture to a medium bowl.

Add 3/4 cup of milk or buttermilk and 1 cup of fresh or frozen berries and stir gently just until the dough is combined.

Pat the dough into a circle that is about 1” thick and 8”-9” in diameter on the cookie sheet. To get a brown, crunchy top, brush them with a little milk and sprinkle with sugar. Cut the circle into 8 wedges with a knife or pastry cutter and separate them on the sheet so that they are at least an inch apart.

Bake for about 20 minutes. Remove from oven.

To add glaze, stir together 2 Tbsp of lemon juice and 1 cup of powdered sugar in a small bowl until well-blended. Feel free to add more/less powdered sugar to make the glaze your desired consistency. Brush or drizzle glaze on top of scones, and serve.

Chicken Nugget Casserole

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place a package of frozen chicken nuggets in a greased baking dish. Sprinkle with 1/3 cup of grated Parmesan cheese. Top with a can of spaghetti sauce, 1 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese, and 1 tsp of Italian seasoning.

Cover and bake for 30-35 minutes.

Serve with spaghetti and salad.

Salad suggestions: Mixed greens with pepper (purple ones are fun!), artichoke hearts, cape gooseberries, kiwi, and grapefruit.

BBQ Beef Patties

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine an egg, 1/4 cup of BBQ sauce, 3/4 cup of crushed Cornflakes, and 1 tsp of salt in a bowl. Add 1 lb of ground beef and mix well. Shape into four oval patties, about 3/4 inch thick. Place in a greased baking pan. Spread with 1/4 cup of BBQ sauce.

Bake, uncovered, for 25-30 minutes. Drain.

SHOPPING LIST:

Parmesan cheese

Mozza cheese (4 oz)

Cheddar cheese (12 oz)

Fat-free cottage cheese

Eggs

Purple cabbage

6 carrots

Pepper

Lettuce

Arugula

Cape gooseberries

Kiwi

Grapefruit

6 apricots

Cantaloupe

Apple (tart one like Granny Smith or Northern Spy)

Fresh/frozen blueberries

1 lb ground beef

Pkg of frozen chicken nuggets

Vanilla ice cream

Can of spaghetti sauce (26.5 oz)

Can of refried beans (16 oz)

Can of artichoke hearts

BBQ sauce

Salsa

Italian seasoning

Cloves

Buckwheat flour

Long grain rice

Spaghetti noodles

[Also needed: salt, crushed Cornflakes, cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, baking powder, Stevia, vanilla, sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice, almonds/almond meal, butter, coconut flakes, rolled oats, chia seeds, mixed nuts, mixed dried fruit, allspice]

Golden Game Hens (Dinner for Two Week 26)

Breakfast: Scones

Lunch: Taco Dogs + pears, rhubarb, strawberries, watermelon

Dinner: Sweet ‘n’ Sour Chicken, Golden Game Hens, Mexicali Pork Chops, rice or potatoes, eggplant, endive, asparagus

Spicy Cherry Chocolate Souffles

  1. In a small pot, bring 3/4 cup of dried tart cherries and 1 1/2 cups of water to a boil.  Reduce to a simmer and simmer for 8-10 minutes.  Blend until smooth in a blender and return to low heat.  Stir in 2 Tbsp of coconut sugar, 3/4 tsp of freshly ground grains of paradise, and 1 1/2 Tbsp of coconut or regular rum, and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes.  Remove from heat and set aside.
  2. Preheat oven to 375°F.  Lightly butter four ramekins.  Tap a small amount of granulated sugar into each ramekin, and gently shake so that the sugar coats all edges.  Tap out extra sugar.
  3. In a double boiler, melt 4 oz of semi-sweet chocolate, 2 tsp of salted butter, and 3 Tbsp of whole milk over gently simmering water, stirring constantly.  When smooth, remove from heat and quickly whisk in 2 egg yolks.  Set aside.
  4. In a medium bowl, beat 2 egg whites and 1/8 tsp of cream of tartar until soft peaks form.  Slowly add 2 Tbsp of coconut sugar, beating all the while.  Beat until stiff but not dry.
  5. Fold egg whites into chocolate mixture in two batches.  Gently spoon batter into each of the ramekins, filling about 3/4 of the way full.  Place ramekins on a baking sheet and bake for 16 minutes.  When they are done they will have risen to the edge of the ramekin or above it, the tops will be beginning to crack, and the centers will still be very moist.  Serve warm with cooled cherry sauce and fresh whipped cream.

Mexicali Pork Chops

Rub an envelope of taco seasoning over 4 boneless pork loin chops. Cook chops in 1 Tbsp of vegetable oil in a skillet over medium-high heat about 9 minutes. Serve with salsa.

Golden Game Hens

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Loosely stuff 6 Cornish game hens with a sliced tart apple and a sliced onion. Place on a rack in a shallow baking pan. Combine 1/4 cup of melted butter and 1/4 cup of soy sauce. Brush over hens.

Bake, uncovered, for 50-60 minutes, basting occasionally.

Sweet n Sour Chicken Casserole

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook rice according to package directions. Cook and cube two chicken breasts. Combine 2 cups of chicken, a drained can of unsweetened pineapple chunks, a jar of apricot preserves or spreadable fruit, a can of cream of chicken soup, and a drained can of water chestnuts in a bowl. Transfer to a greased baking dish. Bake, uncovered, for 30 minutes. Serve over rice.

Taco Dogs

Prepare a 1 lb package of hot dogs according to package directions. Place a slice of process American cheese and a hot dog in a taco shell. Top each taco with 3 Tbsp of warmed baked beans.

SHOPPING LIST:

Process American cheese slices (like Kraft singles)

Whipped cream

Scones

3 endives (purple if you can find it)

Eggplant

Onion

Potatoes

Asparagus

Strawberries

Watermelon

Lemon

6 pears

Rhubarb

Apple (Pick a tart variety)

Hot dogs

4 boneless pork loin chops

2 boneless skinless chicken breast halves

6 Cornish game hams (20 oz ea)

Can of baked beans

Can of unsweetened pineapple chunks (20 oz)

Can of condensed cream of chicken soup (11 oz)

Can of water chestnuts (8 oz)

Jar of apricot preserves or spreadable fruit (12 oz)

Salsa

Grains of paradise

Envelope of taco seasoning

Dried tart cherries

Hard taco shells

Rice

Coconut rum or regular rum

[Also needed: dried tart cherries, butter, soy sauce, vegetable oil, all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, olive or canola oil, milk or buttermilk, icing sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice, almonds or almond meal]

Garlic Rosemary Turkey and then What to Do With the Leftovers (Dinner for Two Week 25)

Breakfast: Croissant or Danish

Lunch: Leftovers + pomegranate, raspberries, apple, grapes

Dinner: Garlic Rosemary Turkey, Pesto Turkey Penne, Mock Lobster with mac n cheese and coleslaw, Pork Roast, rice or potatoes, tomatoes, squash, black salsify

Flourless Honey-Almond Cake

  1. Take 4 eggs out of the fridge 15 minutes before starting recipe or submerge them in lukewarm (not hot) water for 5 minutes.
  2. Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a pan with cooking spray. Line the bottom with parchment paper and spray the paper.
  3. Toast 1 1/2 cups of whole almonds. Spread on a baking sheet and bake for 7-9 minutes, stirring once.
  4. Process almonds in a food processor or blender until finely ground.
  5. Separate the eggs with the yolks in one bowl and the whites in another.
  6. Beat egg yolks, 1/2 cup honey, 1 tsp of vanilla, 1/2 tsp of baking soda, and 1/2 tsp of salt in a large mixing bowl with an electric mixer (or use a paddle attachment on a stand mixer) on medium speed until well combined. Add the ground almonds and beat on low until combined.
  7. Beat egg whites in another large bowl with the electric mixer (use clean beaters on a hand-held mixer or the whisk attachment on a stand mixer) on medium speed until very foamy, white and doubled in volume, but not stiff enough to hold peaks, 1 to 2 minutes (depending on the type of mixer). Using a rubber spatula, gently fold the egg whites into the nut mixture until just combined. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan.
  8. Bake the cake about 28 minutes. Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Run a knife around the edge of the pan and gently remove the side ring. Let cool completely.
  9. Remove the cake from the pan bottom by gently sliding a large, wide spatula between the cake and the parchment paper. Carefully transfer the cake to a serving platter. To serve, drizzle the top of the cake with 2 Tbsp of honey and sprinkle with 1/4 cup of toasted sliced almonds. (To toast sliced almonds, cook in a dry skillet over medium-low heat, stirring constantly for 2-4 minutes.)

Tomato-Mustard Pork Roast

Cut a 3 lb boneless pork roast in half. Place in a slow cooker. Combine 1 can of tomato sauce, 3/4 cup of soy sauce, 1/2 cup of sugar, and 2 tsp of ground mustard. Pour over roast. Cover and cook on low for 8-9 hours. Remove roast to a serving platter and keep warm. Skim fat from pan juices and thicken for gravy.

Mock Lobster

Cut 1 1/2 – 2 lb of partially thawed cod/haddock fillets into 2″ x 2″ pieces. Place in a skillet. Cover with water. Add 1 1/2 tsp of salt, 1 tsp of seafood seasoning and 1 tsp of paprika. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Drain.

Cover with cold water. Add 3 Tbsp of vinegar and bring to a boil. Reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Drain. Serve with melted butter, seafood sauce, macaroni ‘n’ cheese, and coleslaw.

Garlic Rosemary Turkey

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Cut 6-8 small slits in the skin of a whole 12 lb turkey. Insert 6-8 whole garlic cloves between skin and meat. Cut two lemons in half and squeeze two halves inside the turkey and leave them inside. Squeeze remaining lemon over outside of turkey. Spray the turkey with nonstick cooking spray. Sprinkle with 2 tsp of dried crushed rosemary and 1 tsp of rubbed sage.

Place on a rack in a roasting pan. Bake, uncovered, for 1 hour. Cover and bake 2 1/2 – 3 1/2 hours. Serve with gravy.

Save 2 cups of cooked turkey for the recipe below.

Pesto Penne

Cook 8 oz of penne pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, whisk together an envelope of pesto sauce mix, 3/4 cup of milk, and 1/4 cup of olive oil, in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, for 5 minutes.

Add 2 cups of cooked cubed turkey (or chicken). Heat through. Drain pasta. Add to the sauce and toss to coat. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

SHOPPING LIST:

Parmesan cheese

Eggs

Croissants (I like chocolate ones best!)

Danishes (I like apple ones best!)

Coleslaw package and dressing

3 tomatoes (try yellow ones for a change)

2 yellow squashes, depending on the season

6 black salsify

6 apples

Grapes

2 lemons

3-6 pomegranates

Raspberries

3 lb boneless pork roast

2 lb whole turkey

1 1/2 – 2 lbs of fresh or frozen cod or haddock fillets

Can of tomato sauce (8 oz)

Penne pasta (8 oz)

Macaroni ‘n’ cheese (like Kraft Dinner)

Envelope of pesto sauce mix

Envelope of gravy mix

Seafood seasoning

Dried rosemary

Rubbed sage

Whole almonds

Semi-sweet chocolate (4 oz)

Coconut sugar

Dried tart cherries

[Also needed: (whole) milk, olive oil, salt, (salted) butter, vinegar, paprika, honey, vanilla, baking soda, sliced almonds, garlic, soy sauce, sugar, ground mustard, cream of tartar]

Pizza, Burger, and Fries (Dinner for Two Week 23)

Breakfast: Chewy Coconut Almond Raisin Granola Bar, Fruit and Nut Bars

Lunch: Leftovers + cranberries, guava, papaya, grapefruit

Dinner: BBQ Chicken/Veggie Pizza, Cheeseburger ‘n’ Fries Casserole, tomatoes, butternut squash, carrots, persimmons

Dessert: Crepes with strawberries

Fruit and Nut Bars

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a baking pan with parchment paper or coat with nonstick spray.
  2. Coarsely chop 3 cups of dried fruit and 1 1/2 cups of dry roasted nuts until most pieces are relatively uniform in size. Set aside.
  3. Whisk 1/3 cup of flour, 1/8 tsp of baking soda, and 1/8 tsp of baking powder together in a large bowl until evenly combined. Add 1/3 cup of brown sugar, fruit, and nuts, and mix to coat all fruit and nuts with the flour mixture.
  4. In a separate bowl, beat an egg with 1/2 tsp of vanilla about 2 minutes.
  5. Stir egg into flour mixture until evenly mixed.
  6. Spread mixture into prepared pan. Smooth out the top with a spatula.
  7. Bake for 35-40 minutes.

Crepes (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free)

  1. Whisk 3 eggs in a large mixing bowl. Add 1 cup of soy milk, 1 tsp of vanilla, and 3 Tbsp of melted butter (or nondairy butter alternative). Whisk in 3/4 cup of cornstarch, a pinch of salt, and 1 Tbsp of sugar. Stir in 1 tsp of lemon zest and 1 Tbsp of poppy seeds. Let batter rest for half an hour.
  2. Four minutes before cooking, heat wide pan (at least 6-7″) to medium high heat. When hot, add a little bit of butter (or alternative) and spread across the pan evenly. Remove pan from heat to prevent smoking.
  3. Stir the batter and pour ⅛ of a cup into the pan. Quickly spread the batter with a tilt and rotate motion or by using a thin spatula to cover the bottom of the pan evenly. Return the pan to the heat.
  4. Cook the crepe for one minute, loosening the edges with a spatula as it cooks. When the top of the crepe should looks almost dry, flip it over. Cook the other side for a minute and transfer the crepe to a plate.
  5. Repeat the process until you’ve made as many crepes as you want. Add a little butter to the pan periodically to keep the crepes from sticking.
  6. Serve with sliced strawberries. Mmm!

Chewy Coconut Almond Raisin Granola Bars

Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees. Line a baking dish with foil so that some foil hangs over the edges of the pan. Butter the foil and set aside.

In a large bowl, combine 1 1/2 cups of old-fashioned oats, 1/2 cup of wheat germ, 1/2 cup of brown sugar, 2 Tbsp of ground flaxseed, 1/2 tsp of salt, 1/2 tsp of cinnamon, 1/8 tsp of ground ginger, 1 cup of shredded coconut, 1 cup of raisins, 1/2 cup of sliced almonds and 1/4 cup of unsalted peanuts.

In a small bowl, whisk together 1/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp of honey, 1/4 cup of melted unsalted butter (1/2 stick) and 1 Tbsp of fresh orange juice. Pour over the flour mixture and toss together with a fork. The mixture will be dry but sticky. Blend together until all of the dry ingredients are moistened by the honey mixture.

Dump oat mixture into the prepared baking dish. With clean, slightly oiled fingers (or a fork), firmly press the oat mixture into the dish. Bake for 35-40 minutes. The baked granola will still be soft even after it’s baked, but will harden as it cools.

Remove baked granola from the oven and cool for 30 minutes. Place the baking dish in the refrigerator for about an hour before slicing. Don’t skip this step or it will crumble.

Use the overhang foil flaps to remove the baked granola. Use a large, sharp knife to cut block into 12 bars. Wrap individually in plastic wrap and store in an air tight container. Will last, well wrapped, at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.

BBQ Chicken Pizza

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook and cube one chicken breast. Place a prebaked Italian bread shell crust on a pizza pan. Spread with 2/3 cup of honey garlic BBQ sauce. Sprinkle with a small chopped red onion, cubed chicken, and 2 cups of shredded mozzarella cheese. Bake for 10 minutes.

Unexpected guests? Cut one of these pizzas up into strips and serve as an appetizer when friends pop by unexpectedly. They are fast to whip up which will give you extra stalling time while you think of what to serve for the main course. Suggestion? Cheeseburger ‘n’ Fries Casserole. See below. 

Game night? Make one or two of these babies with chicken and then one more with no chicken, but load on the interesting veggies instead. I recommend cubed rutabaga, corn, and cubed sweet potato. Kids coming? Make a happy face out of the veggies to make them seem fun. Or lay out the ingredients and let them decorate their own. You’ll be the most happening place in town. 

Cheeseburger ‘n’ Fries Casser0le

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook 2 lbs of lean ground beef in a skillet over medium heat and drain. Stir in a can of golden mushroom soup and a can of cheddar cheese soup. Pour into a greased baking dish. Arrange a package of frozen crinkle-cut French fries on top. Bake, uncovered, for 50-55 minutes.

SHOPPING LIST: 

24 oz of mozzarella cheese

Eggs

Soy milk (or other nondairy milk)

Non dairy butter alternative

3 prebaked Italian bread shell crust (14 oz)

3 red onions

3 tomatoes

Butternut squash

6 carrots

3-18 persimmons (depending on size)

Rutabaga

Corn

Sweet potato

Cranberries

Strawberries

Guava

Papaya (1 large or 3 small)

3-6 grapefruits

Lemon

Orange

2 boneless skinless chicken breasts (or 2 cups of leftover cooked chicken)

2 lbs lean ground beef

Pkg of frozen crinkle-cut fries (20 oz)

Can of golden mushroom soup (11 oz)

Can of cheddar cheese soup (11 oz)

Honey garlic BBQ sauce

Old-fashioned oats

Unsalted peanuts

Dried fruit – I recommend apricots, dates, and cherries

Dry roasted nuts – I recommend pecans and almonds

[Also needed: wheat germ, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon, ground flaxseed, ground ginger, shredded coconut, raisins, sliced almonds, honey, unsalted butter, vanilla, sugar, cornstarch, poppy seeds, flour, baking soda, baking powder]

Oh My Bird! (Dinner for Two Week 21)

Breakfast: Vanilla Chai Almond Smoothie

Lunch: Leftovers + kiwi

Dinner: Duck with Cherry Sauce, Turkey Tenderloin Supreme, or Sunday Chicken and Stuffing, rice, radishes and bell peppers

Dessert: Chocolate Hazelnut Pie

Duck with Cherry Sauce

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Prick the skin of a 4-5 lb domestic duckling with a fork and place, breast side up, on a rack in a shallow roasting pan. Tie the drumsticks together. Bake, uncovered, for 2 hours. Drain fat from the pan as it accumulates. Cover. Let stand for 20 minutes before carving.

Meanwhile, for sauce, combine a jar of cherry preserves and 2 Tbsp of red wine vinegar in a small pot. Cook and stir over medium heat. Serve with duck. Garnish plate and serve with bing cherries, starfruit, and kale with a squeeze of lime.

Chocolate Hazelnut Blender Pie

  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Roast 1 cup of hazelnuts for 8 minutes until fragrant. Be sure not to burn them.
  3. Set aside to cool. Turn oven down to 300 degrees. When cool, roll off the skins [see tip].
  4. Throw 3/4 cup of coconut flour, 3/4 cup of cacao or unsweetened cocoa powder, 4 eggs, 2 cups of hemp or soy milk, 1/2 cup (or 1 stick) of melted vegan margarine, 3/4 cup of agave nectar, 2 tsp of natural vanilla extract, and a pinch of Celtic sea salt in a blender and mix on high until smooth and creamy. The mixture will be very thick. Taste the batter if you feel comfortable. Add up to 1/4 cup more of cacao/cocoa powder and/or agave nectar to taste if needed. If you aren’t comfortable tasting it raw, that’s fine, but make a note on your recipe for next time!
  5. Grease a 9″ pie plate and pour the mixture into the dish.
  6. Bake for about 40-60 minutes. Cool (the pie will continue to set, so try not to disturb it too much). When cooled completely, chill in the fridge.
  7. Serve with dollops of vegan cream, berries and/or shredded coconut.

Vanilla Chai Almond Smoothie

Soak 5 pitted dates in lukewarm water at least one hour before you plan to have the smoothie.

Put dates in a blender or food processor. Add 1 1/2 cups of unsweetened almond milk, 2 tsp of unsweetened cocoa powder, 1/2 tsp of cinnamon, 1/2 tsp of cardamom, and 1/8 tsp of vanilla extract. Blend until smooth and enjoy! Makes enough for one large smoothie or two smaller ones.

Turkey Tenderloin Supreme

Brown 6 turkey breast tenderloin slices in 1 Tbsp of butter in a large skillet. Add 3 thinly sliced green onions. Cook for 1-2 minutes. Combine a can of cream of chicken soup and 1/4 cup of water. Pour over turkey. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 8-10 minutes. Serve over rice.

Sunday Chicken and Stuffing

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Prepare a package of instant chicken stuffing according to package directions. Spoon down the center of a greased baking dish. Place 6 chicken breasts around stuffing. Combine a can of cream of chicken soup, 1/3 cup of milk, and 1 Tbsp of parsley. Pour over chicken.

Cover and bake for 20 minutes. Uncover and bake 10-15 minutes.

SHOPPING LIST:

Almond milk

Hemp or soy milk

Vegan cream

Vegan margarine – 1 stick (like Earth Balance)

Eggs (preferably organic)

Lime

Dates

6 kiwis

Bing cherries

Starfruit

Berries

Kale

Green onions

6 radishes

3 bell peppers

4-5 lb domestic duckling

6 turkey breast tenderloin slices (4 oz ea)

6 boneless skinless chicken breast halves

2 cans of condensed cream of chicken soup (11 oz ea)

2 cans of sliced pineapple (20 oz ea)

Jar of cherry preserves (12 oz)

Red wine vinegar

Natural vanilla extract

Pkg of instant stuffing mix (6 oz)

Dried parsley flakes

Rice

Hazelnuts

Coconut flour

Cacao

Celtic sea salt

[Also needed: milk, butter, cocoa powder, cinnamon, cardamom, vanilla, agave nectar]

Ribs with Plum Sauce (Dinner for Two Week 20)

Breakfast: Harvest Fruit Compote with Yogurt

Lunch: Green Chili Burritos or Dinner Leftovers + apples, grapes, pears, honeydew

Dinner: Dijon Chicken Kabobs, Ribs with Plum Sauce, or Oven Swiss Steak, rice or potatoes, turnips, corn, beets, radicchio

Dessert: Raw Berry Blueberry Pie & Pudding

Oven Swiss Steak

Trim 2 lbs of boneless round steak. Cut into serving-size pieces. Place in a greased baking dish. Sprinkle with 1/4 tsp of pepper. Top with a thinly sliced onion, a drained can of mushroom stems and pieces, and a can of no-salt-added tomato sauce.

Cover and bake for 1 3/4 – 2 hours. Serve over noodles.

Green Chili Burritos

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook and drain 1/2 lb of ground beef. Shred 4 oz of sharp cheddar cheese to make 1 cup. Spread a can of refried beans over 8 flour tortillas. Top each with beef and 2 Tbsp of cheese. Fold ends and sides over filling and roll up. Place seam side down in a greased baking dish.

Sprinkle with a can of chopped green chilies and remaining cheese. Bake, uncovered, for 20 minutes.

Raw Berry Blueberry Pudding & Pie 

I usually double the recipe, put half in a pie crust and eat the other half as a breakfast pudding. So good – enjoy!

Heat 1/2 cup of water until it just comes to a simmer. Remove it from the heat and add 3 Tbsp of chia seeds. Stir quickly as the mixture becomes gelled. If the mixture is too stiff stir in up to 2 tablespoons additional water until it is pourable. Add 1/4 cup of agave nectar (or sweetener of your choice) to the chia mixture and stir until combined. Add chia mixture to your blender. Cut the tops off of 1 quart of strawberries. Add strawberries & 1 cup of fresh or frozen blueberries. Start the blender off on 1 (or low) and slowly bring up to 10 (or high) and process for 1-2 minutes until mixture is completely smooth and blended. If making a pie, pour mixture into your prepared pie crust. If making pudding, pour into a bowl. Refrigerate at least 2 hours, though more is better. Cut into slices and serve.

Harvest Fruit Compote

  1. Prep the fruit: Peel the skin off 6 apples, core, and cut into bite sized pieces. Larger pieces will stay firmer whereas smaller pieces will become softer. Cut 3 nectarines and 2 plums into comparably-sized pieces. It’s fine to leave the skin on. Remove the leaf from the top of 10 strawberries and slice in half.
  2. In a large pot with a heavy bottom and solid cover, layer the fruit —  apples on the bottom, then the nectarines, then the plums.
  3. Zest about half of an orange over the fruit. Squeeze 1/4 of a lemon over the top.
  4. Turn the heat to medium-low and cover. Let sit for about 10 minutes.
  5. After 10 minutes, uncover and stir, evenly distributing the fruit. The compote is done cooking when the apples have softened just to the point that they can easily be broken in half with a spoon but aren’t total mush.
  6. Add the sliced strawberries to the top of the pot and cover. Turn down to low heat for one minute, then turn off the heat and let sit.
  7. Serve hot or chilled. Works well over yogurt, ice cream, or all by itself. Will last about a week if properly refrigerated. Wait for the compote to cool to room temperature before storing in the fridge.

Ribs with Plum Sauce

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut 5-6 lbs of pork spare ribs into serving-size pieces. Place with bone side down on a rack in a shallow roasting pan. Cover and bake for 1 hour. Drain.

Combine 3/4 cup of soy sauce, 3/4 cup of plum jam or apricot preserves, 3/4 cup of honey, and 3 minced garlic cloves. Brush some of the sauce over ribs. Bake at 350 degrees or grill over medium heat, uncovered, for 30 minutes, brushing occasionally with sauce.

Dijon Chicken Kabobs

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Combine 1/2 cup of Dijon mustard and 1 Tbsp of finely chopped green onion in a bowl. Combine 2 cups of fresh bread crumbs and 1/4 cup of minced fresh parsley in another bowl. Cut 1 1/4 lbs of chicken breasts into 3/4 inch chunks. Toss chicken pieces in mustard mix and then coat evenly with crumb mixture. Line a baking sheet with foil. Coat foil with nonstick cooking spray.

Thread chicken pieces onto metal or soaked wooden skewers, leaving a small space between chunks. Place on the prepared baking sheet. Baked, uncovered, for 6-8 minutes.

SHOPPING LIST:

Yogurt (Greek preferably)

Sharp cheddar cheese (4 oz)

Fresh bread crumbs

8 6″ flour tortillas

12 apples (at least 6 of them should be semi-sweet, like Golden Delicious or Fuji)

Grapes

3 nectarines

2 plums

2 packages or strawberries (at least 3o)

Orange

Lemon

6 pears

Honeydew

Green onion

3 turnips

Onion

6 beets

Radicchio

Corn (fresh or frozen)

Parsley (fresh)

2 lbs boneless round steak

1/2 lb ground beef

5-6 lbs pork spareribs

1 1/4 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breast halves

Plum jam (or apricot preserves)

Can of refried beans (16 oz)

Can of chopped green chilies (4.5 oz)

Can of mushrooms stems & pieces (4 oz)

Can of no-salt-added tomato sauce (8 oz)

Noodles

[Also needed: Dijon mustard, soy sauce, honey, garlic, pepper]

Apple Cinnamon Breakfast Bars (Dinner for Two Week 19)

Breakfast: Pineapple Ham Bake, Apple Cinnamon Breakfast Bars, or Yogurt

Lunch: Leftovers + prunes, figs, grapes, raisins

Dinner: Italian Flank Steak, Mini Sausage Pizzas, or Honey Mustard Chicken, rice or potatoes with onion, parsnip and shallot

Dessert: Key-Lime Avocado Pie

Italian Flank Steak

Combine 2 envelopes of fat-free Italian salad dressing mix, 2 Tbsp of vegetable oil, and 1 Tbsp of lemon juice. Brush onto both sides of a 1 lb flank steak. Place in a shallow dish. Cover and refrigerate for at least 8 hours.

Grill over hot heat for 3 minutes per side.

Mini Sausage Pizzas

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Cook 1 lb of bulk pork sausage in a large skillet over medium heat. Drain well. Beat 2 5 oz jars of sharp American cheese spread, 1/4 cup of butter, and 1/4 tsp of cayenne pepper in a small mixing bowl. Stir in sausage. Split 12 English muffins. Spread cheese mixture on cut sides of each muffin half.

Place on a baking sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes.

This pizzas freeze really well. Wrap them individually and freeze for up to 2 months. When ready to eat, unwrap, place on a baking sheet, and bake at 425 degrees for 10-15 minutes. 

Key-Lime Avocado Pie

To make the crust: In a food processor, combine 3/4 cup of shredded unsweetened coconut, 1/4 cup of unsalted macadamia  nuts, 1/2 tsp of lime zest, and 1/8 tsp of salt, and chop coarsely. Add 1 tsp of lime juice and 1/2 cup of chopped dates and process until it sticks together. Sprinkle a 9″ pie plate with 2 Tbsp of coconut and pat the crust on top and up the sides of the plate. Chill while making filling.

To make filling: Combine 1 1/2 cup of avocado, 1/3 cup of fresh lime juice, 1/3 cup of honey or agave, 4 Tbsp of refined coconut oil, and 1/4 tsp of salt in a blender. Blend until smooth. You may have to add more lime juice and honey/agave depending on the moisture in the avocado. If it needs more liquid, I recommend adding equal parts of both. Adjust flavors to taste. Pour over crust and chill 4-6 hours. Garnish with zest of half a lime and some lime slices.

Note: Unrefined coconut oil can be used, but it will give the pie a more coconut flavor. I prefer it that way, but some like the traditional key-lime flavor better. 

Apple Cinnamon Breakfast Bars

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking pan with parchment paper so that the paper comes over the sides. (You’re going to lift it up later to easily remove the bars from the pan without making a mess.)

Mix 1/2 cup of vanilla whey protein powder, 1/4 cup of your choice of flour, 1/2 cup of rolled oats, 1/2 cup of spelt flakes, 1/3 cup of spelt bran, 1/4 cup of wheat germ, 1/2 tsp of sea salt, 2 tsp of cinnamon, 1/4 tsp of nutmeg, 1/8 tsp of cardamom, 1/8 tsp of allspice, 1/2 cup of organic dried apples and 1/2 cup of peeled and grated apple in one bowl.

Mix 2 Tbsp of honey or agave, 1/2 cup of unsweetened applesauce, 2 Tbsp of melted coconut butter, and 1 tsp of vanilla in another bowl.

Combine well by stirring with a spoon. The batter should be chunky.

Pour the batter into the lined baking pan and use another piece of parchment and even off the surface.

Bake for 20 minutes.

Remove the pan from the oven and lift the parchment paper ‘handles’ out. Allow the bars to cool for about 15 minutes and then slice into 8 even rectangles.

Pineapple Ham Bake

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine 2 undrained cans of crushed pineapple, 2/3 cup of packed brown sugar, 1 Tbsp of vinegar, and 2 tsp of ground mustard in an ungreased baking dish. Mix well. Cut 1 lb of fully cooked ham into bite-size pieces. Stir into pineapple mixture. Bake, uncovered, for 30-40 minutes. Serve with a slotted spoon.

Honey-Mustard Chicken

Flatten 4 chicken breasts to 1/4 inch thickness. Combine 1 cup of dry bread crumbs and 1 tsp of Dijon mustard in a shallow bowl or pie plate. Combine 3 Tbsp of honey and 2 Tbsp of Dijon mustard in another shallow bowl or pie plate.  Dip chicken in honey-mustard mixture and then coat with crumbs.

Cook chicken in 2 Tbsp of butter in a nonstick skillet over medium heat on both sides for about 8 minutes.

SHOPPING LIST:

Yogurt

Gluten-free pie crust (9″)

12 English muffins

Bread

Onion

3 parsnips

2 avocados

Lrg bag of potatoes

Shallot

Prunes (6 loose or a container)

6 figs

Apple

4 limes (or 1 lime, plus lime juice)

Dates

Lemon (or lemon juice)

Grapes

1 lb flank steak

1 lb bulk pork sausage

4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves

2 cans of crushed pineapple (8 oz each)

Dried apples (organic preferably)

Raisins

Spelt flakes

Spelt bran

Allspice

2 envelopes of fat-free Italian salad dressing mix

Coconut butter

Refined coconut oil

2 jars of American cheese spread [like Cheez Whiz] (5 oz ea)

Frozen blueberries

[Also needed: lemon juice, vegetable oil, shredded (unsweetened) coconut, unsalted macadamia nuts, dry bread crumbs, ground mustard, salt, Dijon mustard, vanilla whey protein powder, honey, flour, rolled oats, cinnamon, nutmeg, butter, sea salt, wheat germ, cardamom, brown sugar, agave nectar/syrup, vanilla, cayenne pepper, vinegar, unsweetened applesauce]