Sunday, November 29, 2009

Budget Stretching Meals and Recipes:Fast Foods

The Original Healthy Fast Food
Just about everybody loves cheese. Loaded with calcium and protein, the "real thing" makes so many dishes more appealing, and mellow, nutty, smooth-melting Jarlsberg is particularly versatile, a family favorite.
Secret Restaurant Recipes

Just about everybody loves cheese. Loaded with calcium and protein, the "real thing" makes so many dishes more appealing, and mellow, nutty, smooth-melting Norwegian Jarlsberg-America's most popular specialty cheese-is particularly versatile, a family favorite.

Made from part-skim milk, it's naturally low in calories, sodium and fat-newer Jarlsberg Lite, also great for snacking and cooking, has 50 percent less fat than regular Swiss.

Try this super simple Asparagus Rolls recipe-a surefire party idea. Here are a few other easy, creative, absolutely delicious uses for either classic Jarlsberg or Jarlsberg Lite.
Roll cheese slices around fresh fruits or raw vegetables.

Add cubes to salads and pastas-warm or cool.

Shred on vegetables and into sauces.

Enhance stuffings for meat, poultry or fish.

Enrich egg dishes.

Shred into mashed or "smashed" potatoes.

Grill with peppers, squash, potatoes.

Top burgers-beef, turkey or salmon.

Make hors d'oeuvres, wraps and sandwiches galore.

2006 marks the 50th anniversary of Jarlsberg cheese-and the 125th of its source, Tine B.A. Norwegian Dairies, a farmers cooperative. One way to celebrate is to discover tasty new ways to give your menus pizazz-and a nutritional boost.

Asparagus Rolls With

Ham and Jarlsberg

12 clean asparagus spears

12 thin slices lean ham

1 cup grated Jarlsberg cheese

Boil asparagus in lightly salted water 1 minute. With slotted spoon, dip spears in ice water to preserve color; drain on paper towels. Wrap a slice of ham around each spear and place on baking sheet lightly sprayed with oil. Sprinkle spears liberally with Jarlsberg and brown in 450° oven about 5 minutes. Serve immediately.

Serving suggestions: Place on grilled country bread brushed with olive oil and garlic and topped with chopped tomatoes plus a bit of sea salt, if desired.

Cheese, glorious cheese is just delicious when included in this Asparagus Rolls With Ham and Jarlsberg recipe.

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Budget Stretching Meals and Recipes:Healthy Meals And Snacks

Healthy Meals And Snacks From The Cool Aisles Of The Store are Budget Friendly

More than milk: Convenient, tasty and healthy foods can be found in the refrigerated dairy.

Recipes can still be budget friendly.
The refrigerated dairy aisles of the grocery store are full of convenient, tasty, healthy foods--whether you're looking for thirst-quenching drinks, terrific meals and accompaniments or nutritious snacks.

The refrigerated dairy aisles of the grocery store are full of convenient, tasty, healthy foods-whether you're looking for thirst-quenching drinks, terrific meals and accompaniments or nutritious snacks.
Here are some ideas for nutritious anytime snacks:
Cheese Kabob-Alternate slices of apples and cheddar cheese on skewers.
Tropical Smoothie-Blend orange juice, frozen strawberries and vanilla yogurt.
Morning Wake-up-Mix cup of skim milk with teaspoon of instant coffee and sweetened cocoa.

Granola Delight-Layer granola and fresh fruit with favorite yogurt flavor.

Ultimate Easy Snack-Keep the fridge full of individually packaged yogurts, jello, cheese sticks, vegetable dips and more for anytime, anywhere snacking.

While any time of year can be a great time to visit the Cool Aisles of the store, June is officially Dairy Month, sponsored by the National Frozen & Refrigerated Foods Association (NFRA). That means you can find special prices and promotions on many tasty cool favorites.Secret Recipes from your Favorite Restaurants

Here is a breakfast, lunch or dinner entrée that's easy to make, with key ingredients from the dairy aisle:

Vegetable Cheddar Quiche

1 cup chopped red, green or yellow bell peppers

3/4 cup sliced mushrooms

1/4 cup chopped onion

1 cup refrigerated egg substitute

1 cup refrigerated non-dairy creamer

1/4 tsp salt

1/8 tsp pepper

1 oz shredded Cheddar Cheese

Heat 10" skillet; spray generously with nonstick cooking spray; sauté peppers, mushrooms and onions until tender-crisp. Combine egg substitute, creamer, salt and pepper; pour into skillet, cover and cook over medium-low heat until set, approx. 8-10 minutes. Sprinkle quiche with cheese and replace cover until cheese is melted. Remove from heat and let set for two minutes. Serves 4.
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Budget Stretching Meals and Recipes:Fast And Healthy Family Favorites

Fast food can be healthy food if you know where to look. And the easiest place to find healthy fast food in your kitchen.
Menu in a Box 100 Day Planning

Fast food can be healthy food if you know where to look. And the easiest place to find healthy fast food is in your kitchen. The new "Pillsbury GOOD FOR YOU!" cookbook can help families with the daily challenge of making fast, healthy and flavorful dinners despite today's busy schedules. The book features 170 healthy, delicious recipes that contain less fat, sugar and salt than regular recipes. All can be prepared in 35 minutes or less, with more than half of the recipes taking 20 minutes or less. Here's a tasty "Super Express" sample:

Spicy Chinese Chicken Tacos

Start to Finish: 20 Minutes

1 box (4.6 oz) taco shells (12 shells)

3 boneless skinless chicken breasts (3/4 lb), cut into thin, bite-size strips

1 teaspoon grated gingerroot

1 small clove garlic, minced

2 tablespoons soy sauce

1 tablespoon honey

1 large green onion, sliced

1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

11/2 cups shredded iceberg lettuce

1. If desired, heat taco shells as directed on box.

2. Heat large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken, gingerroot and garlic; cook 3 to 5 minutes, stirring often, until lightly browned.

3. Stir in soy sauce, honey, onion and pepper flakes to coat. Reduce heat to low; cover and cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until chicken is no longer pink in center.

4. To serve, place scant 1/4 cup chicken mixture in each taco shell. Top each with lettuce. Serve immediately.

6 servings (2 tacos each)

Serving Size: 1 Serving

Calories: 180, Calories from Fat: 60% DV, Total Fat 7g, Saturated Fat 1g, Trans Fat 1.5g, Cholesterol 35mg, Sodium 260mg, Total Carbohydrate 18g, Dietary Fiber 2g, Sugars 4g, Protein 14g, Vitamin A 4%, Vitamin C 0%, Calcium 4%, Iron 6%, Exchanges: 1 Starch, 11/2 Very Lean Meat, 1 Fat; Carbohydrate Choices: 1

Besides delicious recipes, the cookbook also contains quick tips for better nutrition, on-the-go dinner ideas, easy-to-assemble fruit desserts and a pantry makeover. Look for it wherever books are sold.

Click Here for the 100 Day Menu in a Box

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Budget Stretching Meals:Five Easy Tips to Save $590 on Your Food Budget This Year

Five Easy Tips to Save $590 on Your Food Budget This Year

by S. L. Simmons

Pine Canyon Media. LLC

Don't Throw Your Money Away

Would you like to help the planet and save an easy $590 this year? It's not a gimmick. Many families can save an easy $590 without even having to give up their lattes from Starbucks, turn down the heat, or ride their bikes to work. All it takes is a little better menu planning.
According to research from the University of Arizona, the average American family throws out nearly $600 in food annually, often due to good intentions but poor follow through. Research shows that most food shopping is done on the weekends, when shoppers are fresh and well rested. With good intentions to eat healthy, they buy an assortment of fresh fruits and vegetables with plans to make healthy foods, perhaps a fresh fruit salad and green salad with dinner each week night. Then Monday comes and brutal reality strikes. The enthusiastic, health conscious shoppers from the weekend come home from work tired, hungry and cranky, order carry out pizzas with garlic fries and the family soda special, and forget about the tasty fresh produce sitting forlornly in the crisper. Or maybe they don't forget about the produce. They may even feel guilty about it. But they order the pizza, soda and garlic fries just the same. By the end of the week, the fruits and vegetables, wilted and spoiled, are tossed in the trash. Then the weekend comes, and the tired, fast food aficionados are once again transformed into the enthusiastic, health conscious, well intentioned grocery shoppers, and the vicious cycle repeats.

Tips to Avoid Wasting Food Each Week

If the above description matches what goes on in your household, how can you stop this cycle of produce and budget abuse and save a cool $590 this year from your food budget? Try the tips below.
1. Buy canned, frozen or dried fruits and vegetables instead of fresh. Sure fresh produce tastes great and is highly nutritious, but be a realist. If your family is throwing out perishable food regularly, then cut back on how much fresh food you buy each week. Buy fruits and vegetables that will keep until you really have the time to prepare and eat them. Frozen mangos and frozen strawberries placed in a blender with some apple juice makes a tasty, healthy smoothie.
2. Grocery shop several times a week and just buy enough fresh food for a few days at a time. In my family we have found that it is less complex to plan 2 - 3 days out than it is to plan for a whole week. Plus shopping more often makes it easier to know what is in the fridge and be able to use up leftovers before they spoil.
3. Get a crock pot and make your meals in the morning before you go to work or get tired out from doing housework and taking care of the kids. With crock pots you can start baked potatoes, baked apples, baked winter squash and a wide variety of soups and casseroles with fresh vegetables in the morning and come home later in the day to a house filled with great aromas and a healthy meal waiting for you and your family.
4. Plan your meals in advance and only buy what you need to make those meals. For easy week day meal ideas, I like to buy cookbooks with dishes you can make with 3 - 5 ingredients. I've learned to avoid cookbooks that have "simple", "fast" or "easy" in the titles. What is simple, fast and easy for someone who loves to cook and whose only job is to write cookbooks for a living often means meals you can make in under an hour or two. I'm more into what can I make that is healthy in 15 minutes or less. Simple is a relative term often abused by cookbook authors, but three ingredients is three ingredients.
5. Buy fruits and vegetables with long shelf lives to keep on hand for those times when you find you do have the time and energy to prepare and cook fresh produce. These include apples, potatoes, onions, carrots, cabbage and winter squash. Diced onions and root vegetables, tossed with a little olive oil and roasted in the oven, makes a great side dish in about 10 minutes of prep and 25 minutes of baking time. Sliced carrots, onions and cabbage stir fried in a wok with a little sesame oil is another simple and healthy side for a quick week night meal.

A Little Planning Can Turn Into Big Savings

If you can reduce waste and save $600 from your food bill each year, in twenty five years you will have saved $15,000 (or more if you invest your savings each year and let the interest compound).
Copyright 2008 Always Frugal.
S. L. Simmons is a thrifty mom of two. Visit her web site for articles on budgeting, a free budget worksheet and more ways to save money on groceries.
Originally published on for S. L. Simmons Thursday, October 30, 2008

Article Source: Five Easy Tips to Save $590 on Your Food Budget This Year

Budget Meal Plan: How to Eat For Less Than 20 Dollars Per Week

Budget Meal Plan: How to Eat For Less Than 20 Dollars Per Week

by Doug Smith

When people ask me how I save so much money, they never believe how
simple the answer is. Simply cooking your meals at home has such a
profound impact on your budget, it has got to be the number one way to
cut costs without sacrificing anything. By simply cooking more meals
you will absolutely save hundreds of dollars per month. Depending on
your habit, you may even save more than hundreds of dollars per week.
You don't even realize that on an average day, where all you get is a
fast food meal and starbucks in the morning, you've already dropped 10
dollars on horrible food. That's already 300 dollars per month - Do you
get where I'm going with this?

Here are some things you NEED to
pick up and start working with in your kitchen. These are basic staples
that can be used to create thousands of different recipe ideas, and
help you learn how to be a better cook:

Oil (sunflower, vegetable)
Canned Beans
Various spices (salt, pepper, a few others)
Tomato/Pasta sauce
Meat that's ON SALE
Vegetables that's ON SALE

breakfast (god forbid you wake up 5-10 minutes earlier) you can make
dozens of things with eggs. Overeasies, scrambled eggs, poached eggs,
500 different omelletes, on bread, by themselves, etc.

For lunch you can make pasta, rice, chicken/turkey sandwiches, anything - And you can bring it with you to work.

dinner, pasta and rice combined with various meats, vegetables, and
spices can be combined into thousands of dinner ideas. For specific
recipes simply google "chicken dish", or "cooking with rice". It isn't
complicated - there are hundreds of recipes that are nearly impossible
to screw up, even for virgin cooks.

Some of these meals will
only cost you 50 cents when you look at the ingredients. Rice is dirty
cheap and a staple around the world, yet neglected in the west. The
possibilities are endless - Believe it or not you can eat well for less
than 3 dollars per day. If you get a drink from starbucks in the
morning, eat lunch out somewhere, then pick something up for dinner (or
make a frozen meal), you're spending close to 15-20 dollars without
realizing it. That's 600 dollars a month. How much can you save?

You do
the math. I just recently got a good friend and my sister on this plan,
and they're paying their rent with the difference.
For a more in depth look at this as well as sample recipes and other amazing secrets on saving money at the grocery store, visit Budget Living

Originally published on for Doug Smith Friday, April 03, 2009

Article Source: Budget Meal Plan: How to Eat For Less Than 20 Dollars Per Week