Breadcrumb Brussels – 68¢/serving

photo1.5 lbs brussels sprouts (or 500g or 6 cups) Salt Butter Breadcrumbs (plain or Italian-seasoned) Italian seasoning (if using plain breadcrumbs) Parmesan cheese

  1. Preheat oven to 325°
  2. Cut an X in the core of each brussels sprout
  3. Put in pot with salted water and cook 8-10 minutes. Drain and place in shallow ungreased baking dish.
  4. Combine 1/4 cup of breadcrumbs, Italian seasoning (if using), 1 Tbsp of melted butter, and 2 Tbsp of grated Parmesan cheese in a bowl.
  5. Drizzle brussels with 2 Tbsp of melted butter.
  6. Sprinkle with breadcrumb mixture.
  7. Cover and bake for 10 minutes.
  8. Uncover and bake for 10 more minutes.

 

 

 

 

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Parmesan Breadsticks – 64¢/breadstick

Grated Parmesan cheese

Italian seasoning

White bread dough (Thaw it 24 hours ahead of time if its frozen)

Butter

Pizza sauce

  1. Preheat oven to 400°.
  2. Combine 3/4 cup of grated Parmesan cheese and 1 1/2 tsp of Italian seasoning in a shallow bowl. Set aside. Divide dough into 32 sections. Roll each into a 5″ rope. Twist two pieces together. Moisten ends with water and pinch to seal.
  3. Melt 1/4 cup of butter in a small bowl.
  4. Dip in dough sticks in butter, then in cheese mixture.
  5. Place on a greased baking sheet. Bake for 10-14 minutes. Serve with pizza sauce for dipping.

Tortellini Alfredo $3.98/serving

Butter

Heavy whipping cream

Nutmeg

Parmesan cheese (shredded is best)

Package of cheese tortellini (19 oz) – I use fresh, but frozen would work too. Just make sure to follow the instructions listed.

 

  1. Melt 1/2 cup of butter over medium-low heat in a saucepan. Add 1 cup of heavy whipping cream and 1/8 tsp of nutmeg. Heat through but DO NOT BOIL. Stir in 1 cup of shredded Parmesan cheese until melted.
  2. Cook tortellini according to package directions. Drain. Transfer to a large serving bowl. Add the cheese sauce and toss to coat. It’s better fresh – leftovers don’t taste quite as good with this one.

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]

Green Eggs and Ham (Dinner for Two Week 22)

Breakfast: Green ‘n’ Gold Egg Bake, Yogurt with Toasted Quinoa, Almonds and Apricots

Lunch: Leftovers + banana, pear, orange, cherries

Dinner: Breaded Pork Chops, Spaghetti Carbonara, Easy and Elegant Ham, red potatoes, sauteed red peppers and red onion

Dessert: Yogurt Tartlet

Breaded Pork Chops

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine 1 cup of Italian-seasoned bread crumbs and 2 Tbsp of grated Parmesan cheese in a shallow dish (like a pie plate). Place 1/3 cup of ranch salad dressing in another shallow dish. Dip 6 pork chops in ranch dressing, then coat in the crumb mixture.

Place in an ungreased baking pan. Bake, uncovered, for 25 minutes. Meanwhile, heat a jar of red sauce in a small pot. Pour over pork chops and sprinkle with 2 Tbsp of grated Parmesan cheese to serve.

Green ‘n’ Gold Egg Bake

Thaw 2 packages of frozen spinach and squeeze dry. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sprinkle 1/4 cup of seasoned bread crumbs into a greased baking dish. Bake for 3-5 minutes. Combine spinach, 3 cups of cottage cheese, 1/4 cup of grated Romano cheese, 1/4 cup of grated Parmesan cheese, 3 eggs, and 3/4 cup of seasoned bread crumbs in a bowl. Spread over the baked crumbs. Beat 2 more eggs. Pour over spinach mixture.

Bake, uncovered, for 45 minutes. Let stand for 5-10 minutes before serving.

Yogurt Tartlets

I’ve featured this recipe before on Week 21 in my Year as a Single College Student Series. You can view the recipe here:

https://theshortchef.wordpress.com/2014/03/27/week-21-special-week-5-recipes-for-50/

 I decorated mine with dates, nectarine, and peach slices this time.

Yogurt with Toasted Quinoa, Almonds, and Apricots

To toast the red quinoa, add 1 Tbsp to a medium saute pan and cook over medium/low heat about 3-5 minutes. Remove from the heat and transfer to a bowl to cool.

Add 1 Tbsp of sliced almonds to the saute pan, and toast over low heat, moving around the pan constantly. Almonds will toast in 2-3 minutes. Transfer to a bowl to cool.

Add 1 Tbsp of coconut chips to the saute pan, and toast over low heat, moving around the pan constantly. When coconut is toasted, transfer to a bowl to cool.

Add 6 oz of Greek yogurt to a small bowl. Top with toasted quinoa, almonds, 3 roughly chopped dried apricots and coconut chips. Drizzle with honey and a small sprinkle of sea salt. Flaky sea salt, like fleur de sel works best.

Spaghetti Carbonara

Cook a package of thin spaghetti according to package directions. Meanwhile, dice 10 strips of bacon, and cook over medium heat in a skillet until crisp. Drain on paper towels. Add 1/3 cup of butter to the drippings. Heat until melted.

Drain spaghetti. Toss with 2 lightly beaten eggs and 3/4 cup of grated Parmesan cheese. Add to the skillet. Cook and stir over medium heat for 3-4 minutes. Sprinkle with bacon.

Easy and Elegant Ham

Drain 2 cans of sliced pineapple, reserving the juice and setting aside. Place half of the pineapple in an ungreased slow cooker. Top with a 6 lb fully cooked boneless ham. Drain a jar of maraschino cherries well. Add cherries, remaining pineapple, and reserved pineapple juice on top of the ham. Spoon a jar of orange marmalade on top as well. Cover and cook on low for 6-7 hours.

Remove to a warm serving platter. Let stand for 10-15 minutes before slicing. Serve pineapple and cherries with sliced ham.

SHOPPING LIST:

Parmesan cheese (at least 2.5 cups worth grated)

Romano cheese (1/4 cup worth)

Cottage cheese (24 oz)

Greek yogurt

Plain lowfat vanilla yogurt

Eggs

Italian-seasoned dry bread crumbs

Red chili pepper

Red onion

Bag of red potatoes

3 red peppers

Bananas

6 pears

Dates

Nectarine

Peach

6 oranges

Cherries

6 lb fully cooked boneless ham

6 pork chops

Bacon

2 pkgs of frozen chopped spinach

Jar of maraschino cherries (6 oz)

Jar of orange marmalade (12 oz)

Jar of red pasta sauce

Pkg of thin spaghetti (7 oz)

Red quinoa

Dried apricots

Coconut chips

Natural cane sugar

[Also needed: butter, sliced almonds, honey, sea salt, all-purpose flour, oats, salt, maple syrup, lemon juice, seasoned bread crumbs, ranch salad dressing]

Chocolate Cookie Breakfast Cereal (Dinner for Two Week 15)

Breakfast: Chocolate Cookie Breakfast Cereal

Lunch: Cherry Coke Salad, Fruit Medley, Salad with French Salad Dressing, Papaya or Peach

Dinner: Mac and Cheese Tuna Casserole or Beef and Bean Skillet, Zucchini Pancakes, Egg Noodles, Green pepper or Leafy greens

Dessert: Bananas Foster Loaf Cake

French Salad Dressing

Combine 1/4 cup of vegetable oil, 2 Tbsp of vinegar, 3/4 tsp of salt, 1 minced garlic clove, and a dash of pepper in a jar with a tight-fitting lid. Shake well. Store in the refrigerator.

Mac and Cheese Tuna Casserole

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a package of macaroni and cheese according to package directions. Stir in a can of cream of celery soup, a drained and flaked can of tuna, and 1/2 cup of milk. Pour into a greased baking dish. Sprinkle with 1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese and minced fresh parsley. Bake, uncovered, for 2o minutes.

Bananas Foster Loaf Cake                               Gluten-free, Dairy-free!

3 – 4 large bananas
¾ cup sugar
2 Tbsp unsalted butter or shortening, in 1 piece
1   large egg plus 1 large egg white
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1   cup gluten-free all-purpose flour
1   tsp baking powder
1   tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp salt
½ cup canola oil or melted coconut oil (unflavored or virgin)

1. Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 325°. Grease a loaf pan. Trim both ends off each of 3 bananas so the bananas will fit crosswise in the pan. Peel the ends and the long pieces and halve the long ones lengthwise. Transfer to a plate.
2. In a large, heavy skillet, bring ¼ cup sugar and 2 Tbsp of water to a boil, without stirring. Cook until the water evaporates and the mixture just starts turning amber. Remove from the heat and swirl in the butter with a fork. Add the banana pieces cut side down and cook over low heat for 1 minute. Transfer the banana pieces to the prepared loaf pan, arranging them crosswise, cut side down. Drizzle the remaining caramel on top.
3. Transfer 1 cup of the banana ends (add more banana if necessary to equal 1 cup) to a medium bowl. Mash with the remaining ½ cup sugar. Beat in the egg, egg white and vanilla.
4. In a large bowl, whisk the flour with the baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Add the banana mixture and oil and whisk until blended. Scrape the batter over the bananas in the pan and bake 50-55 minutes. Let cool on a rack for 10 minutes and then invert onto a serving platter and let cool completely.

Chocolate Cookie Breakfast Cereal

  • 3/4 cup gluten-free corn flour
  • 1/2 cup gluten-free oat flour
  • 3 Tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil or butter, melted
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 cup natural peanut butter
  • 1/4 tsp Stevia
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees with the rack in the middle. Prepare a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Spray the pan first with some cooking spray so the paper sticks to it. Mix the dry ingredients together in a medium bowl. Mix peanut butter with warm butter or coconut oil until there are no lumps. Stir in water. Combine wet and dry ingredients and stir until well combined.
  • Spread the batter as thin as possible on the cookie sheet with a spatula. About 1/8″ is good. Try to keep the same thickness throughout the batter. Bake for about 22-25 minutes. Leave oven on and remove baking pan. Carefully place on a cutting board (be sure parchment is removed too, it can go back in the pan for the next step.) Cut strips of dough with a pizza cutter or serrated knife, then cut into squares. 1/2 inch is a good size that fits well on a spoon.
  • Arrange cereal squares back on sheet pan in a single layer. Put back in the oven and bake for another 3-5 minutes per side, flipping once. Be sure to watch they do not burn. Your cookie cereal will crisp up more as it cools. Store at room temperature in an airtight container.

Egg Noodles

Beat 1 egg, plus 3 yolks until light and fluffy in a mixing bowl. Add 3 Tbsp of cold water and 1 tsp of salt. Mix well. Stir in 2 cups of all-purpose flour. Turn onto a floured surface. Knead until smooth. Divide into thirds.

Roll out each portion to 1/8 inch thickness. Cut noodles to desired width. Cook immediately in boiling salted water or chicken broth for 7-9 minutes. Drain. Sprinkle with chopped fresh parsley.

Zucchini Pancakes

Shred 2 zucchinis and lightly beat 1 egg. Combine zucchini, egg, 2 Tbsp of biscuit/baking mix, and 3 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese in a bowl. Heat 1 Tbsp of vegetable oil in a skillet over medium heat. Drop batter by 1/4 cupfuls and flatten. Fry until golden brown. Turn and cook the other side.

Fruit Medley

Combine a can of peach or apricot pie filling, 2 drained cans of fruit cocktail, a drained can of pineapple chunks, and a drained can of mandarin oranges in a large bowl. Cover and refrigerate. Stir in a few slices of banana to each serving just before eating.

Cherry Coke Salad

Drain a can of crushed pineapple, but reserve juice. Set fruit aside. Bring pineapple juice and 1/2 cup water to a boil in a pot. Add 2 packages of cherry gelatin. Stir until dissolved. Stir in a can of cherry pie filling and 3/4 cup of cola. Pour into a serving bowl. Refrigerate until slightly thickened. Fold in reserved pineapple. Refrigerate until firm.

Bean and Beef Skillet                              I usually double the batch and use half as a dip for tortilla chips as a late night snack

Cook 1 lb of ground beef and a chopped onion over medium heat in a large skillet. Drain. Stir in a can of baked beans and 1/4 cup of ketchup. Heat through. Sprinkle with 1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese. Cover and cook on low until cheese is melted.

SHOPPING LIST:

Cheddar cheese (12 oz)

Parmesan cheese

Eggs

2 onions

2 zucchinis

3 green peppers

Leafy greens

Parsley

Bananas

Papaya

6 peaches

2 lb ground beef

Can of tuna (6 oz)

2 cans of baked beans (28 oz)

Can of condensed cream of celery soup (11 oz)

1 can of crushed pineapple, 1 can of pineapple chunks

2 cans of pie fillings – one cherry and one peach or apricot (21 oz each)

2 cans of fruit cocktail

Can of mandarin oranges

2 pkgs of cherry gelatin

Tortilla chips

Can of cola

Biscuit/baking mix

Gluten-free oat flour

Cocoa powder

Fine sea salt

Natural peanut butter

Gluten-free all-purpose flour

Pkg of macaroni and cheese

[Also needed: ketchup, vegetable oil, salt, all-purpose flour, butter, vanilla extract, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, canola oil, coconut oil, milk, vinegar, garlic, pepper]

Cinnamon, Spice, and Everything Nice Fruit Dip (Dinner for Two Week 13)

Breakfast: Coconut granola and strawberries

Lunch: Pasta bean or French bean salad, Fruit dip with apples, pears, strawberries, pineapple slices, apricots, and watermelon

Dinner: Ravioli casserole or Oven-roasted potatoes, Chayote squash or Chinese cabbage

Dessert: Cake

 

Gluten-Free Angel Food Cake

  1. Place 10 egg whites in a large bowl. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sift 3/4 cup sugar, 1/4 cup of cornstarch, 1/4 cup of white rice flour, 1/4 cup of tapioca flour, and 1/4 cup of potato starch together twice. Set aside.
  2. Add 1 1/2 tsp of cream of tartar, 3/4 tsp of salt and 3/4 tsp of vanilla to egg whites. Beat on medium speed until soft peaks form. Gradually add 1/2 cup of sugar, about 2 tablespoons at a time, beating on high until stiff peaks form. Gradually fold in flour mixture, about 1/2 cup at a time.
  3. Gently spoon into an ungreased tube pan. Cut through the batter with a knife to remove air pockets. Bake on the lowest oven rack for 45-50 minutes. Immediately invert pan; cool completely, about 1 hour.
  4. Run a knife around side and center tube of pan. Remove cake to a serving plate. Top with fresh fruit. I recommend balls of cantaloupe, cape gooseberries, and kiwi as it makes the cake look more interesting that your typical berry mix. 

 

Coconut Granola

  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Combine 3 cups of whole-rolled oats, 1/4 cup of chia seeds, 1/2 cup of raw sliced almonds, 1/2 cup of unsalted sunflower seeds, and 1/4 tsp of salt in a large bowl. Set aside.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together 1/3 cup of coconut oil, 1/4 cup of maple syrup, and 1/4 cup of honey.
  4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry , and mix well so the oat mixture is fully coated.
  5. Spread mixture in an even, single layer on the prepared baking sheet. (Work in batches or on multiple sheets if necessary!)
  6. Bake for 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes.
  7. After removing the granola from the oven, stir in 1/2 cup of coconut flakes. Store in an airtight container and enjoy!

 

Pasta Bean Salad

Cook a package of tricolor spiral pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, place a package of frozen California-blend vegetables in a glass dish. Cover and microwave for 7-8 minutes. Drain. Drain pasta and rinse in cold water.

Drain a can of sliced ripe olives and drain and rinse a can of your favorite beans. Combine pasta, vegetables, olives, and beans in a bowl. Combine 1 1/3 cups of Italian salad dressing and 1/2 tsp of garlic salt. Pour over salt and toss to coat. Refrigerate until serving.

 

Ravioli Casserole                              I usually double the recipe using a second kind of ravioli for variety throughout the week

Preheat oven to to 350 degrees. Cook and drain a package of cheese ravioli. Spread 1/2 cup of spaghetti sauce in an ungreased baking dish. Layer with half of the ravioli, 1 1/4 cups of spaghetti sauce, 1 cup of cottage cheese, and 2 cups of shredded mozzarella cheese. Repeat layers. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup of grated Parmesan cheese.

Bake, uncovered, for 30-40 minutes. Let stand 5-10 minutes before serving.

[8-10 cups of cooked ravioli may be used instead]

 

Oven-Roasted Potatoes

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Slice 2 lbs of red potatoes into 1/2 inch slices. Combine potatoes, 1/3 cup of vegetable oil, and an envelope of dry onion soup mix in a large Ziplock bag. Shake until well coated. Empty bag into an ungreased baking pan.

Cover and bake for 35 minutes, stirring occasionally. Uncover and bake for 15 minutes longer.

 

Cinnamon ‘n’ Spice Fruit Dip

Combine 2 cups of whipped topping, 1/4 cup of packed brown sugar, 1/4 tsp of cinnamon, and a dash of nutmeg in a small bowl. Store in the fridge. Serve with fresh fruit – apples, pears, pineapple slices, and strawberries are best.

 

French Bean Salad

Cook and crumble 3 bacon strips. Combine 2 cups of thawed French-style green beans, 2 Tbsp of chopped onion, and bacon in a serving bowl. Stir in 1/4 cup of ranch salad dressing. Refrigerate until serving.

 

SHOPPING LIST:

Cottage cheese (16 oz)

Mozzarella cheese (16 oz)

Parmesan cheese

2 apples

2 pears

6 apricots

5 cape gooseberries

Kiwi

Pineapple

Watermelon

Cantaloupe

Chinese cabbage

3 chayote squash

2 pkgs of strawberries

2 lbs red potatoes

Onion

Bacon

Whipped topping

Frozen French-style green beans

Pkg of frozen cheese ravioli and pkg your favorite frozen ravioli other than cheese (28 oz ea)

Pkg of frozen California-blend vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, carrots)

Can of sliced ripe olives (2 oz)

Can of your favorite kind of beans

Can of whole kernel corn (15 oz)

Can of condensed cream of chicken soup (11 oz)

Ranch salad dressing

Spaghetti sauce (28 oz)

Coconut oil

Dry onion soup mix

Pkg of tricolor spiral pasta

[Also needed: brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, vegetable oil, Italian salad dressing, garlic salt, salt, maple syrup, honey, coconut flakes, vanilla extract]

Banana Pops (Dinner for Two Week 11)

Lunch: Artichoke or Cottage cheese veggie salad, Taco tidbits, Apples or Grapes

Dinner: Chow mein chicken, Broccoli or Rapini

Dessert: Banana popsicles

Artichoke Heart Salad

Drain a can of artichoke hearts and cut each heart into quarters. Drain a can of sliced ripe olives. Chop a green pepper. Thinly slice green onions. Combine artichokes, olives, 1/3 cup of green pepper, and 1/3 cup of green onions in a bowl. Add 3/4 cup of Italian salad dressing and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Serve with a slotted spoon.

Cottage Cheese Veggie Salad

Peel, pit, and chop a large, ripe avocado. Chop a tomato. Slice 1/4 cup of stuffed olives. Combine 3 cups of small-curd cottage cheese, avocado, tomato, and olives in a serving bowl. Sprinkle with 2 Tbsp of sliced green onions.

Chow Mein Chicken

This recipe yields one batch, but I usually double the recipe anyway because it’s so good!

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook and cube two chicken breasts. Combine a can of cream of chicken soup, a can of chicken with rice soup, and a can of evaporated milk in a bowl. Stir in chicken. Transfer to a greased baking dish. Bake, uncovered, for 40 minutes. Stir. Sprinkle with a can of chow mein noodles. Bake 5-10 minutes. Add a drained can of sliced water chestnuts before baking for extra crunch, if you want.

Banana Pops

Cut a ripe banana into wedges. Combine 1 cup of vanilla yogurt, 1/2 cup of orange juice, and the banana in a blender. Cover and process until smooth. Pour into Popsicle trays or pour into small plastic disposable cups and insert Popsicle sticks. Freeze until firm, about 5 hours or overnight.

Taco Tidbits

Place 6 Tbsp of butter in a glass dish. Cover and microwave for 60-70 seconds. Add 3 Tbsp of taco seasoning. Stir in 8 cups of Corn Chex until evenly coated.

Microwave for 1 minute. Stir. Heat 1 – 1 1/2 minutes longer. Stir. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup of grated Parmesan cheese. Microwave for 1 minute. Stir. Heat 1 minute longer. Cool.

SHOPPING LIST:

Eggs or egg whites

Cottage cheese (24 oz)

Parmesan cheese

Vanilla yogurt

Orange juice

Bananas

6 apples

Grapes

Avocado

Tomato

Green onions

Green pepper

Broccoli

Rapini

Stuffed olives

4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves

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

2 cans of condensed chicken with rice soup (10.5 oz ea)

2 cans of chow mein noodles (3 oz ea)

2 cans of evaporated milk (5 oz ea)

Can of sliced water chestnuts

Can of artichoke hearts (14 oz)

Can of sliced ripe olives (2 oz)

Taco seasoning

Corn Chex

Cereal

Cornstarch

White rice flour

Tapioca flour

Cream of tartar

[Also needed: butter, sugar]

Don’t be Corn-fused (Dinner for Two Week 9)

Lunch: Chicken salad, Cherry salad, Cheerio’ square, Amazeing mix, Grapefruit

Dinner: Breaded ranch chicken or Tuna delight, Rice or Noodles, Arugula or Asparagus

After Thanksgiving Salad 

Note: It’s called After Thanksgiving Salad because the original recipe calls for leftover turkey. If you have some, or would prefer to buy turkey breasts instead, go for it, but since chicken is an easy, cheap substitute, I used it instead.

Cook and shred 4 chicken breasts. Meanwhile, hard boil an egg. When finished, peel and mash the egg with a fork in a bowl. Add shredded chicken, 3/4 cup of mayonnaise, and 1 Tbsp of sweet pickle relish. Cover and refrigerate until serving. Stir in 1/2 cup of chopped pecans just before serving.

Frozen Cherry Salad

Combine a softened package of cream cheese and a thawed carton of whipped topping in a mixing bowl. Stir in a can of cherry pie filling. Drain 2 cans of mandarin oranges. Set aside 1/4 cup for garnish. Fold remaining oranges into cream cheese mixture. Transfer to a loaf pan. Cover and freeze overnight.

Remove from the freezer 15 minutes before cutting. Garnish with reserved mandarin oranges, maraschino cherries, and orange wedges.

Tuna Delight

Combine 1 3/4 cups of thawed mixed vegetables, a can of drained and flaked tuna, and a can of cream of chicken or celery soup in a large pot. Cook and stir until heated through. Serve over rice or noodles.

Breaded Ranch Chicken

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine 3/4 cup of crushed Cornflakes, 3/4 cup of grated Parmesan cheese, and an envelope of ranch salad dressing mix in a shallow bowl. Dip 8 chicken breasts in 1/2 cup of melted butter, then roll in cornflake mixture to coat.

Place in a greased baking dish. Bake, uncovered, for 45 minutes.

A-maze-ing Mix

Combine 3 bags of popped popcorn, a box of Corn Pops, and a package of corn chips in several large bowls. Melt 2 packages of vanilla or white chocolate chips in a pot over medium-low heat. Stir until smooth. Pour over popcorn mixture and toss to coat. Spread in two pans. Cool. Store in airtight containers.

Cheerio’ Squares

Place 3 Tbsp of butter and a package of mini marshmallows in a large glass bowl. Microwave, uncovered, for 2 minutes. Stir in 1/2 cup of peanut butter until blended. Add 5 cups of Cheerios and 1 cup of plain M&Ms. Mix well. Spoon into a greased pan. Press down gently. Cool slightly before cutting.

SHOPPING LIST:

Cream cheese

Parmesan cheese

Eggs

Orange

Arugula

Asparagus

14 grapefruits

12 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves

Frozen whipped topping

Frozen mixed vegetables

Can of tuna (12 oz)

Can of condensed cream of chicken or celery soup

Can of cherry pie filling (21 oz)

2 cans of mandarin oranges

Jar of maraschino cherries

Sweet pickle relish

Peanut butter

Pkg of mini marshmallows (10.5 oz)

2 pkgs of vanilla or white chips (10-12 oz each)

Ranch salad dressing mix

Crushed cornflakes

Cheerios

Corn pops

Popcorn

Corn chips

Pecans

Rice

Noodles

Baking soda

Canola oil

[Also needed: butter, M&Ms, mayonnaise]

Gingerbread Pumpkin Squares (Dinner for Two Week 7)

Breakfast: Gingerbread Pumpkin Squares

Lunch: Corn Salad, Orange Buttermilk Salad, Ham, Nectarine or Peach, Nuts

Dinner: Italian Chicken Dinner or Peachy Pork and an endive

Dessert: Cool Waters Shake

Gingerbread Pumpkin Squares

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray a baking pan with oil or non-stick spray.

Combine 1/4 cup of whole wheat pastry flour, 3/4 cup of vanilla whey protein powder, 1/2 cup of oats, 2 tsp of baking powder, 1/2 tsp of salt, 2 tsp of cinnamon, 1/2 tsp of ground cloves, 1/2 tsp of ground ginger, and 1/2 tsp of nutmeg in a medium-sized bowl and stir well. Stir together 1/2 cup of unsweetened almond milk, 1/2 cup of pumpkin puree, 3 Tbsp of molasses, 2 tsp of vanilla, and 3 packets of Stevia in a larger bowl until a smooth mixture forms.

Gradually pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, mixing until just combined. Stir in 1/2 cup of walnut pieces.

Scrape the batter into the greased pan and bake for 20 minutes.

Remove the pan from the oven and let it cool before trying to remove the cake. Lift it out of the pan with a large flipper and cut into 9 squares.

Orange Buttermilk Salad

Bring a can of crushed pineapple to a boil in a pot. Remove from the heat. Add a package of orange gelatin and stir to dissolve. Add 2 cups of buttermilk and mix well. Cool to room temperature. Fold in carton of thawed whipped topping. Pour into a dish. Refrigerate several hours or overnight. Cut into squares. Great side dish to ham.

Creamy Corn Salad

Combine a drained can of whole kernel corn, a seeded and diced tomato, 2 Tbsp of chopped onion, 1/3 cup of mayonnaise, and 1/4 tsp of dill weed in a small bowl. Mix well. Cover and refrigerate until serving.

Peachy Pork

Cut 1 lb of pork tenderloin into 1/4 inch slices. Saute in a large skillet in 2 Tbsp of vegetable oil for 4 minutes. Add 4 minced garlic cloves. Cook and stir 1 minute longer. Stir in a jar of salsa and 1/4 cup of peach preserves. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 2 minutes. Serve over rice.

Italian Chicken Dinner

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut up a 3 lb fryer/broiler chicken and place in a greased baking dish. Cut up 1 lb of red potatoes into chunks and arrange around chicken. Drizzle with 3/4 cup of Italian salad dressing. Sprinkle with 1 Tbsp of Italian seasoning and 3/4 cup of grated Parmesan cheese.

Cover and bake for 20 minutes. Uncover. Bake 20-30 minutes longer.

Cool Waters Shake

Combine 3/4 cup of cold milk, 2 Tbsp of berry blue gelatin, and 3/4 cup of vanilla ice cream in a blender. Cover and process for 30 seconds. Pour into a glass and drink immediately.

Stovetop Snacks

Saute 2 cups of nuts in 2 Tbsp of oil or melted butter over medium-high heat, stirring often, until they begin to brown. Sprinkle with your choice of seasonings (salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, curry powder, etc], tossing the nuts with a wooden spoon. Turn out onto paper towels to cool, then store in an airtight container.

SHOPPING LIST:

Almond milk

Buttermilk

Parmesan cheese

Red potatoes (at least 2 lbs)

6 nectarines

6 peaches

Tomato

3 endives

Onion

Garlic

Ham

1 lb pork tenderloin

Broiler/fryer chicken (3 lbs)

Vanilla ice cream (at least 1 quart)

Frozen whipped topping (8 oz)

Salsa (16 oz)

Can of whole kernel corn (15 oz)

Can of crushed pineapple (20 oz)

Peach preserves

Pumpkin puree

2 pkgs of berry blue and 1 pkg of orange gelatin

Rice

Walnuts

Italian seasoning

Dill weed

Ground ginger

Molasses

Stevia

Chocolate chips

Potato starch

[Also needed: nuts, vegetable oil, butter, favorite seasoning, milk (at least 1 L), mayonnaise]