Helpful Tips When Shopping on a Budget

  • Use old, used or un-used envelopes to write your grocery and errand list on then gather your coupons to put inside the envelope so they're available when you need them.


Bacon Wrapped Pan Sauted Asparagus Spears

What You Will Need for Four Servings:

One Pound of Washed and Trimmed Fresh Asparagus Spears - Thinner Works Best
One Half Pound of Bacon
Lightly Greased Pan on Medium Heat

How to Assemble:

Wrap four to five spears in uncooked bacon that's been cut in half until all spears are used.
Put the bundles into the heated pan with the bacon seam side down to seal the seam and hold the bundles together.
Cook several minutes per side, turning as needed.
The asparagus is ready when it's tender and the bacon should be crisped around the same time.

Serve warm and refrigerate leftovers.
Good re-heated for lunch the next day.

Taco Lettuce Wraps

It seems Asian wraps are the thing these days and I do like them and enjoy making them but had an idea for using other ingredients for a change and now that we've had Asian and Mexican wraps we discover we like both.
Variety is the spice of life.
What You Will Need:
Iceberg Lettuce Leaves
One Pound of Hamburger
Shredded Cheese
Chili Powder
One Can of Rinsed Black Beans if Desired
Chopped Fresh Tomato or Salsa
Taco Sauce

Cook as you normally would for tacos and instead of using the bread wraps or tortillas, use large lettuce leaves to hold the meat mixture.
Add cheese to melt
Using a taco seasoning packet works fine.

Trim the Fat While Saving Money

Usually I buy boneless, skinless chicken thighs that are on sale but lately they've been pretty costly so I've purchased thighs with the bone in and skin on.

I've found that many of the thighs have excess fat (yes, I meant to do that) and so I've used my kitchen scissors to trim some of the fat leaving some on for flavor and to keep the chicken moist.

One good recipe is baked chicken with barbecue sauce.

Adding the sauce to the tops of the chicken thighs before cooking sometimes keeps the skin rubbery and unappealing.

First, cook the chicken at a medium to high heat until the fat/skin is rendered and lightly crispy.
Then top with barbecue sauce and cook until done adding more to taste after they're done.


Let - Us - Eat - Cake!

Walmart has, in my opinion, a fine bakery. The donuts are as good as our new, local donut specialty store and the cakes are quite tasty.

My favorite is the yellow cake with buttercream icing.

Fresh Shrimp Cooked With Smoked Beef Sausage

Slice and saute a one pound package of sausage. We like Hillshire Farms brand, and then add the shelled shrimp to the pan with the sausage and cook until it becomes that famous "Pinkish Orange" shrimp color.

The sausage and its drippings really adds a nice flavor to the shrimp which can be bland if not fried or cooked with Old Bay Seasoning.

Add a tossed salad or green beans and you're done. Baked beans would go well with this dish too.

If there is no time to shell the shrimp yourself or you're not so inclined, then purchase the frozen bags of shelled shrimp or buy it at the seafood counter. They usually put out fresh and frozen types and it frequently goes on sale.

If it's already cooked, just add it to the sausage to heat through.

Easy Supper

We haven't had our Mexican pie in a while so I made it tonight and added lettuce and reduced fat sour cream. I layered on a plate the shredded lettuce then the pie and then a little extra shredded cheese on top and then a little sour cream. It was a tasty dish for a chilly day.

When In Doubt Take The Chicken Out...

...of the freezer.
Somedays it is really hard to decide on what to prepare for dinner and I have found on those days that taking chicken out of the freezer to thaw is the best answer for the unanswered, "What's for dinner?" question.

If your pantry has pasta or rice you're covered.

If you have an oil and/or butter it's fixable.

If you have any vegetable at all, even just onion, you can use it to make a nice meal.

Stay stocked on these staples to help make making dinner a pleasure:
Frozen broccoli, corn, etc.,
Canned tomatoes, corn, beans, etc.,
Seasonings including, salt, pepper, cumin, chili powder, onion powder, garlic powder etc.,
Try to keep a jar of Parmesan in the fridge to sprinkle over almost any chicken dish.
Olive Oil
Vegetable Oil

Rich Buttery Chocolate Homemade Cake With Rich Buttery Chocolate Homemade Frosting

I think I have finally found a chocolate cake that is too rich for my taste.

It's hard to believe. I thought I could eat anything rich.

Those days are over.

This cake takes the cake.

I may never bake this moist, chocolatey, rich, gooey cake again.

Two sticks of butter in the cake batter.

Almost two in the icing.

I had to use ice cream to cut the sweetness.


I found this recipe on the Pioneer Woman's website.

Just look under the recipe titled The Best Chocolate Sheet Cake Ever and you'll find it listed with yummy pictures.

Good luck! :)

Ham is the New Turkey

Thanksgiving wouldn't be the same without being thankful that you can eat what you want.

I'm sure there were wild and domestic hogs to be found in the 1600's.

Ham, baked sweet potatoes, macaroni and cheese made with the healthier pasta and low fat cheese and milk, sweet corn, fordhook lima beans, yeast rolls, chocolate pecan pie and pumpkin pie.

A feast for the eyes and the stomach.