About Me

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I am a stay at home mother of two young children and love making healthy meals for my family! I love fitness, playing tennis, cooking and traveling. Most of all I love spending time with my family!!! I hope you enjoy making these recipes for your family as well!!

Monday, February 21, 2011

A little behind

I would normally have the menu and shopping list up by now, but this weekend threw me for a loop! Things are almost back to normal and I will get together a shorter menu for this week.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Mediterranean Salmon with White Beans

One of my favorite types of fish is salmon...its so good for you and there's a lot that you can do with it. This is one way that I like to cook it and serve it over a tomato/bean mixture. You could also cook the salmon in individual foil pouches with the tomato/bean mixture and steam the fish rather than pan searing the fish. Either way would be delicious! This meal cost about $12-$15 depending on the amount and quality of fish that you purchase. This recipe came from Southern Living and is approximately 375 calories per serving...that includes the tomato/bean mixture as well. ENJOY!!!

  • 1 Medium onion, coarsely chopped
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil, divided
  • 1 (15 oz.) can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 Cup chopped pitted kalamata olives
  • 1 Cup halved grape tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
  • 4 (6 oz.) salmon fillets
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • Garnish: fresh parsley sprigs

  1. 1. Saut onion in 1 Tbsp. hot oil in a saucepan over medium heat 2 minutes or until slightly softened. Add beans, olives, and tomatoes; cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, 2 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Remove from heat, and stir in basil.
  2. 2. Sprinkle salmon fillets evenly with salt and pepper. Cook salmon in a large nonstick skillet in remaining 1 Tbsp. hot oil over medium high heat 3 minutes on each side or until fish flakes easily. Spoon bean mixture evenly over salmon fillets, and serve immediately. Garnish, if desired.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Grilled Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms

I made this for dinner tonight and it was fantastic! Other than the taste being great, there is only 83 calories per mushroom! I found this recipe in Cooking Light and will make it again. I served it with couscous...or you could serve it with Quinua or rice. It was inexpensive too...only about $7!!

2/3 Cup chopped plum tomato
1/4 Cup (1 ounce) shredded part skim mozzarella cheese
1 teaspoon olive oil, divided
1/2 finely chopped fresh or 1/8 teaspoon dried rosemary
1/8 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
1 garlic clove, crushed
4 (5 inch) portobello mushroom caps
2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons low sodium soy sauce
Cooking spray
2 teaspoons minced fresh basil

Prepare grill pan or grill.
Combine the tomato, cheese, 1/2 teaspoon oil, rosemary, pepper, and garlic in a small bowl.
Remove brown gills from the undersides of mushroom caps using a spoon, and discard gills. Remove stems; discard. Combine 1/2 teaspoon oil, juice, and soy sauce in a small bowl; brush over both sides of mushroom caps. Place the mushroom caps, stem sides down, on grill rack coated with cooking spray, and grill for 5 minutes on each side or until soft.
Spoon 1/4 cup tomato mixture into each mushroom cap. Cover and grill 3 minutes or until cheese is melted. Sprinkle with basil and balsamic glaze.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Bayou Pasta

Pasta is one of my favorite meals to eat; however, I really try to limit my pasta intake due to the enormous amount of carbs. The original recipe came from All You magazine and uses regular white pasta but I use whole wheat. This is an quick meal to throw together and doesn't cost much. Total cost is about $10. Serve with a little side salad. I'm actually making this tonight and can't wait!!!

12 oz penne
3 Tbsp unsalted butter
1 Tbsp all purpose flour
1 1/2 Cups half and half
1/2 Cup grated Parmesan
Salt and pepper
1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 1/2 Tbsp Cajun spice blend
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper, optional
2 tsp vegetable oil
2 firm ripe Roma tomatoes, cored and diced

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Cook penne according to package directions.
Melt butter over medium heat. Add flour; stir for 1 minute. Add half and half; stir until thickened, 6 minutes. Remove from heat; add Parmesan, salt and pepper. Cover.
Place chicken between 2 sheets of plastic wrap; pound with a rolling pin to 1/2 inch thickness. Rub Cajun spice and cayenne, if using, evenly over chicken. Warm oil in a nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Add chicken and cook, turning once, until no longer pink in center, 6 to 8 minutes. Slice chicken.
In a bowl, toss pasta with sauce. Top with chicken and tomatoes and serve.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Shrimp with Chimichurri

This is a fantastic meal to serve at a dinner party or for dinner for your family. I like to serve with rice or couscous and some roasted broccoli. You could also serve it over crusty French bread. Total cost is about $10. The recipe comes from Food Network. Hope you enjoy!!

1 lb jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 Tbsp dried oregano
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Olive oil, for drizzling
2 Tbsp olive oil
8 oz pancetta, cut into 1/4 inch cubes
3 cloves garlic
1 Cup packed fresh parsley leaves
1/2 Cup fresh oregano leaves or 2 tablespoons dried
1/3 Cup red wine vinegar
1 Cup extra virgin olive oil
3 Tbsp lemon juice
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat a grill pan or preheat a gas or charcoal grill.
Season the shrimp with the dried oregano, salt and pepper. Drizzle with olive oil. Grill the shrimp for 1 to 2 minutes on each side until pink and cooked through.
In a small skillet, heat the olive oil over medium high heat. Add the pancetta and cook, stirring constantly until browned, about 6 to 8 minutes. Drain on paper towels. Set aside.
In the bowl of a food processor, combine the garlic, parsley, oregano, vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, and lemon juice. Pulse until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Drizzle shrimp with the chimichurri and sprinkle with the pancetta.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Week 5 menu and shopping list

This weeks menu consists of quite a few healthy meals that pack a good punch! I don't cook pasta too much because of the enormous amount of carbs but I LOVE PASTA!!! I figure that if we have 4 healthy meals we can have one pasta meal. This menu (including veggies) cost approximately $75. I buy a lot of frozen vegetables b/c one bag of broccoli is $1.50 and it is 4 servings. This week Birdseye frozen vegetables are on sale so stock up!
Shrimp with chimichurri (garlic/herb oil)
Bayou Pasta (chicken and vegetables with whole wheat pasta)
Grilled Stuffed Portabella Mushrooms
Mediterranean Salmon
Maple Chipotle Porkchops

Grocery List

Portabella mushroom caps
6 Roma Tomatoes (for 3 of the meals)
flat leaf parsley (this is for 3 of the meals)
garlic (get the pre-minced garlic and keep on hand)
small onion
2 lemon ( for 2 of the meals)
whole wheat penne pasta (or any pasta of your choice)
kalamata olives
1 can cannellini beans (great northern beans...white beans)
barbeque sauce (should have some left over from the BBQ last week)
red wine vinegar
good extra virgin olive oil
maple syrup (get a good quality syrup)
1 can chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (Mexican food isle)
half and half
parmesan cheese
part skim mozzarella cheese (shredded)
cheese for grits (recipe calls for smoked gouda, but feel free to use american/fontina/gruyere)
cajun spices (McCormick)
8 oz pancetta (in the deli)
1 lb shrimp
1 lb salmon filets (about 2-3 servings)
Bone in pork chops or if you prefer boneless
chicken (whole chickens are on sale...or breasts)

Grilled Flank Steak with Blue Cheese Butter

1 1/2 lb flank steak, trimmed
1/2 butter, softened (1/2 stick), divided
1/2 tsp Onion powder
2 minced garlic cloves
4 oz Blue cheese

Season steak with salt and pepper and sear over medium high heat for 4-5 min on each side. Let rest for 10 min before slicing. Put 2T of butter, garlic, and onion powder into microwave safe bowl and heat for 2 min (this cooks the garlic). Remove and add the blue cheese and rest of butter. Mix well and serve over steak.

*Blue Cheese Butter recipe from Publix

Thursday, February 10, 2011

BBQ Quesadillas

It's time to use up the rest of that pork we used to make to BBQ Potatoes the other day. Quesadillas are a quick and easy dinner that is tasty. If you want to add some cilantro, I've seen recipes with this but I don't like cilantro, so I didn't use any. Total cost for this meal is only about $5-$6!!!

1/2 lb shredded barbecued pork
1/2 Cup barbecue sauce
1/2 Red onion
8 flour tortillas (6 inch)
1 Cup shredded Mexican four cheese blend
2 Tbsp butter or margarine, softened
Toppings: sour cream, sliced green onions, barbecue sauce

Slice red onion thinly and cook over low heat with 1T of butter to soften.
Stir together first 3 ingredients.
Spoon pork mixture evenly on 1 side of each tortilla; sprinkle with cheese. Fold tortillas in half, pressing gently to seal. Spread butter on both sides of quesadillas.
Heat a large nonstick or cast iron skillet over medium heat, and cook quesadillas 2 to 3 minutes on each side or until browned. Cut each quesadilla in half for main dish servings or in quarters for appetizer servings. Serve with desired toppings. Garnish, if desired.

*picture from Betsy van awesome blog

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Fish n Chips

I don't fry much of anything!! I have a horrible guilt come over me when I eat fried foods. I do believe in everything in moderation though, so I don't feel too bad serving this to my family occassionally because it is oh so good! It's a quick meal to throw together...you can serve it with oven baked potatoes/fries to complete the Fish n Chips dinner. The primary cost is the fish so this meal is under $10!

3 fish fillet (Cod or haddock)
2 Tbsp Bisquick
1 Cup Bisquick
1 Egg
1/2 Cup Light beer

Cut fish into either strips or nuggets and toss with the 2 T of Bisquick. Meanwhile mix together Bisquick, beer, and egg. Drop fish into batter. Heat 1/4 cup oil to med heat and once hot add fish. Cook fish about 3 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Drain on paper towel. * Serve with homemade tarter sauce (mayonnaise, dill relish, dash of worchestershire sauce, garlic and onion powder, S/P) or malt vinegar.

* Picture from McCormick Recipes

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Chicken Parmesan Burgers

One of my favorite foods are burgers...you can do so much with them! You can use almost any meat and add many different ingredients to it and they always turn out delicious. Chicken Parmesan burgers are very easy, healthy, and tasty. You can serve them on some good Italian bread or as a chicken Parmesan patty...either way is great! I served with sweet potato fries that I baked in the oven. Total cost approximately $8 for 4 large burgers. Enjoy

1 lb ground chicken breast
1 shallot, minced
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
1/4 cup Italian bread crumbs
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup marinara sauce
Slices of mozzarella cheese

Mix together chicken and next 5 ingredients. Form burger patties about 4 inches in diameter. Make sure that you push your thumb into the middle, but not through, burger patty...this will make the burger stay flat and not mound up. I like to use my cast iron skillet to cook these but feel free to grill them. Turn on to medium high heat and put patties in for about 3 min per side. You want to make sure that they are golden brown on each side and cooked through. Remove from pan/grill and put about 1.5 T of sauce on each patty and top with cheese. Put under broiler until melted and golden brown. You can serve it on good Italian bread or eat it by itself.

*Picture from Sweet Nicks

BBQ Potatoes

1 4-5 lb Boston Butt
1 Bottle bbq sauce, your choice
1 Cup Water
1 Large onion, quartered
1 tsp ground mustard
4 baking potatoes
1 Cup grated sharp Cheddar cheese
1/2 light sour cream

In a slow cooker, place Boston butt (pork shoulder) and quartered onion. In separate bowl, mix water and barbecue sauce. Pour over pork and onion. Sprinkle ground mustard onto pork. Set on low for 8-10 hours. Poke potatoes with fork and wrap in wet paper towel. Put in microwave for 8 min or until done. Cut slit in the top of potato. Remove inside of potato and place in large bowl. Add cheese, sour cream, salt and pepper. Once pork is cooked, pull apart with 2 forks and put 1/2-3/4 of the pork into bowl with potatoes. Save remaining pork for another meal. Mix together and put pork/potato mixture into potato shell. Top with more BBQ sauce and cheese. Put under broiler until cheese melts.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Winter Chili

With the weather still cold, I enjoy nothing more than a hot bowl of chili. I don't have all day to cook it though so I made this recipe and it only takes about 25 min to cook. If you want, you can brown the meat and dump everything into a slow cooker on low for 6 hours and it would be very tasty! I makes quite a lot...probably enough to serve 5-6 adults. If you'd prefer to serve it over rice or over nachos...feel free!! This too is an inexpensive meal costing less than $10. 


  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 2 20 ozs Cans diced tomatoes
  • 1 Can light kidney beans
  • 1 Can dark kidney beans
  • 1 Packet chili seasoning
  • 1 Tsp Garlic salt
  • 1 Tsp Onion powder
  • 1 (12 ounce) bottle light bodied beer

  1. Brown beef in heavy pot...add beer and chili seasoning. Add cans of tomatoes with juice. Drain and rinse beans and add to pot. Add seasoning. Let simmer for 20 min (or longer if you have time). Top with shredded cheddar cheese, sour cream, onions, and fritos (or your desired toppings).
Picture from Mediabistro

Friday, February 4, 2011

Chicken Sate with Peanut Sauce

This meal is quite yummy! I made it and served it with sugar snap peas and sesame noodles (whole wheat spaghetti, 2T soy sauce, 2 T brown sugar, 3 T sesame oil, garlic, ginger, sesame seeds and salt...mixed together). My little girl who doesnt eat much meat ate the chicken with peanut sauce! It was inexpensive, easy to make, and delicious! I found this recipe in Cooking Light magazine (along with this picture). ENJOY!!


1 lb skinless, boneless chicken cutlets, cut into strips
1 Tbsp light brown sugar
2 1/2 Tbsps low sodium soy sauce
2 Tsps bottled ground fresh ginger or 1 tsp ground ginger
1 Tsp grated lime rind
1/4 Tsp crushed red pepper
2 garlic cloves, minced

1 Tbsp light brown sugar
1 1/2 Tbsps low sodium soy sauce
1 Tbsp fresh lime juice
2 Tbsps natural style, reduced fat creamy peanut butter
1/4 Tsp crushed red pepper
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup chicken broth (only if you want to thin out the sauce)

Prepare grill or grill pan.
To prepare sate , combine chicken and next 6 ingredients (through 2 garlic cloves) in a medium bowl. Let stand 10 minutes.
To prepare sauce, combine 1 tablespoon brown sugar and the next 5 ingredients (through 1 garlic clove) in a medium bowl, stirring until sugar dissolves.
Thread chicken strips onto each skewers. Place chicken on grill pan coated with cooking spray; grill 5 minutes on each side or until chicken is done. Serve chicken with sauce.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Week 4 menu and shopping list

I am pretty excited about this coming weeks menu. I even managed to get two meals out of one protein so we are saving even MORE money :-) Total for this weeks menu was about $80...pretty good for 4 adults.

BBQ Potatoes
Chicken Parmesan Burgers
Fish and Chips
BBQ Quesadillas
Grilled Flank Steak with Blue Cheese Butter

Shopping List
Italian Parsley
Potatoes (Idaho)
1 large onion
1 red onion
BBQ Sauce (Bulls Eye on sale)
Italian breadcrumbs
Shredded Cheddar Cheese/Jack Mix (large bag for 2 meals)
Blue Cheese
Sour Cream
Hamburger Buns
Ground Chicken (on sale)
Boston Butt (5lb is about $9)
Haddock (fish is on sale)
Flank Steak

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Bacon and Mushroom Quiche

I sort of love quiche...all kinds. Since both bacon and mushrooms were on sale...why not make Bacon and Mushroom Quiche. You can make two if you use non deep dish pie crusts...depends on how many you need to feed. I served with a salad with mandarin oranges and dried cranberries. I've made this my own recipe over the years...feel free to add herbs or other spices. Total cost was about $10...serves 4-6.

6 Slices of bacon, chopped
1 small onion, minced
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 Container of mushroom, fresh
1 (12 ounce) can evaporated milk
3 Eggs
1 Cup Cheese (swiss, cheddar, monteray jack, or fontina)
1 salt and pepper to taste
1 deep dish pie shell (or two regular)

Preheat oven to 395. Cook bacon in medium saucepan over medium heat until crispy, drain on paper towel. In same pan and 1 T of bacon grease, cook onion and garlic over medium heat. Remove to large bowl. Cook mushrooms in pan until liquid is evaporated and brown. In the large bowl with onion and garlic, add bacon, mushrooms, milk, cheese, beaten egg, and salt and pepper. Mix well...add to deep dish pie shell. Cook for 40 minutes.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Pork Tenderloin on Corncakes with Cranberry chutney

Let me start with sating that this was delicious! The broiling of the meat added a nice salty crust on the outside of the pork tenderloin and the cranberry chutney added a nice sweetness. I actually changed the recipe a little and served it on a corncake vs a corn biscuit. Its still very simple and uses the Jiffy Cornbread mix. Total cost for this meal was less than $15...the tenderloin cost about $11 on sale at Publix and everything else is very inexpensive. I got the original recipe from Southern Living and adapted to my liking.

2 pork tenderloins (3/4 to 1 pound)
2 Tsps salt
2 Tsps ground black pepper
2 Tbsps olive oil
1 Can crushed pineapple (20 ounce)
1 Can whole berry cranberry sauce (16 ounce)
1/4 Cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 Tsp ground ginger
1/4 Tsp salt
1 pkg. "JIFFY" Corn Muffin Mix
1/4 cup flour
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/8 tsp. salt
3/4 cup whole kernel corn, drained (optional)
1/3 cup milk
1 egg

Place pork in a lightly greased 15 x 10 inch jelly roll pan; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Rub evenly with oil.
Broil 5 1/2 inches from heat 5 minutes; reduce oven temperature to 450, and bake 20 minutes or until a meat thermometer inserted into thickest portion registers 160. Meanwhile, Drain pineapple well;  Stir together pineapple and next 4 ingredients in a small saucepan over medium heat, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, and simmer, stirring often, 15 minutes or until thickened. Remove from heat. Cover and chill until ready to serve. Once pork is done, let stand 15 minutes before slicing. To make corncakes combine corn muffin mix and next 6 ingredients...Blend well.  Drop by tablespoon on prepared griddle.  Cook until lightly browned on both sides.  Drain on paper towel and serve. Cut pork into 1/4 inch thick slices (about 18 slices each). Place pork slices evenly over corncakes, and top evenly with Cranberry Chutney.