Food

Homemade BBQ sauce

posted by Andrea | 03/20/2019 | 10 comments

Although West Michigan is still fairly cold, I thought a recipe for homemade BBQ sauce would be the perfect way to kick off spring here on the blog! 

The recipe is SO simple and extremely tasty — you might never buy store bought BBQ sauce again!

Cookie Crumb Truffles (my favorite way to use up stale baked goods)

posted by Andrea | 03/13/2019 | 10 comments

During my eat-from-the-pantry challenge last year, I used up various qualities of stale cookies, crackers, pretzels, cereals, bars, and brownies no one apparently wanted to eat anymore.

Miraculously, after mixing these stale crumbs with cream cheese and dipping them in chocolate, they were everyone’s new favorite treat! I’m sharing the simple “recipe” in today’s post!

Overnight French Toast Casserole

posted by Andrea | 03/6/2019 | 19 comments

My year-long bread-baking journey has had a rocky start so far — resulting in lots of stale, hard, dense, bread. However, I will not waste those ingredients (or my time). Instead, I make lots of yummy whole grain french toast casseroles!

If you’re looking for a great way to use up stale bread, buns, or rolls, try this recipe!! 

Beef and Barley Stew With a Kick!

posted by Andrea | 02/27/2019 | 7 comments

Beef and Barley is such a classic soup recipe, I’m surprised I haven’t shared it on my blog before.

It’s one of our favorite soups/stews — perfect for cold weather (especially with the extra “heat” from the spices!)

Sweet Potato Black Bean Tacos

posted by Andrea | 02/19/2019 | 12 comments

Today’s recipe for Sweet Potato Black Bean Tacos is one of those yummy meals that tastes just as good for leftovers as it does fresh-from-the-oven, which is probably why I make it at least once or twice a month!

It is a vegetarian dish — but you could easily add cooked ground beef or cooked shredded chicken if you want some meat. However, with the black beans and mushrooms (and cheese), our family doesn’t even miss the meat.

Cheesy Sausage and Quinoa Balls

posted by Andrea | 02/14/2019 | 18 comments

In an attempt to use up some leftover cooked quinoa we had in the fridge, I combined ground sausage and the cooked quinoa together… and added a little cheese (because who doesn’t love cheese!) 

The results were FANTASTIC! 

How We Celebrate Valentine’s Day: Frugal, Festive, Family Fun!

posted by Andrea | 02/11/2019 | 8 comments

We love celebrating special days and holidays… but we most definitely do NOT spend crazy amounts of time, energy, or money on decorations, fancy food, or elaborate gifts.

If you share my love of celebrating special days without too much excess hoopla, I think the simple ideas, tips, and recipes in this post will help make your entire week a bit more festive!

How I Store, Prep, and Serve All Our Fresh Produce

posted by Andrea | 02/5/2019 | 56 comments

Yesterday, I shared how I stretch our grocery shopping to every 2-3 weeks — today I’m sharing a how I store, prep, and serve the huge variety of fresh produce I buy every 2-3 weeks so it doesn’t get wasted and so my family can enjoy it at every single meal.

My hope is that this post gives you as much detail as possible regarding our fresh produce consumption… just short of actually inviting you all into my kitchen (wouldn’t that be fun though!) 

How I Stretch Our Groceries for 2-3 Weeks!

posted by Andrea | 02/4/2019 | 26 comments

Over the past 12-18 months — as our family has tried to eat significantly more fresh produce — I’ve been asked over and over and over again how I make this work without going back to the grocery store every other day.

Well, believe it or not, I often only get groceries every 2 to 3 weeks! Today I’m sharing how I make this work without wasting valuable produce.

Homemade Oatmeal: An Easy Way to Eat Whole Grains

posted by Andrea | 01/31/2019 | 46 comments

This “recipe” is so ridiculously simple… however, since my goal is to cook, bake, and consume whole grains every day this year, I couldn’t resist the chance to share one of the easiest ways I’ve found to eat more whole grains!

If you’re looking for a super simple, super frugal, hearty whole-grain breakfast, try your hand at homemade oatmeal.

My Self-Imposed Eat-From-The-Pantry Challenge

posted by Andrea | 01/25/2019 | 52 comments

Back in October, I decided we had WAAAAAAAAY too much food in our pantry and freezer… my solution = a self-imposed Eat-From-The-Pantry (and freezer) Challenge!

Today I’m sharing how this 3-month-long challenge worked for our family, as well as how I’m planning to change my grocery shopping from here on out.

Shredded Brussels Sprout Salad

posted by Andrea | 01/22/2019 | 20 comments

Yes… the main ingredient of this tasty salad is shredded Brussels Sprouts! Don’t click away just yet though…

Even if you think you hate Brussels Sprouts, I have a feeling you’ll be pleasantly surprised with the flavor, crunch, and tang of this delicious “salad”!

BBQ Chicken Chili

posted by Andrea | 01/16/2019 | 14 comments

This chili has been on regular rotation in our kitchen these past few months — it’s such a quick weeknight meal I can have on the table in roughly 30 minutes.

If you’re looking for a yummy warm-weather comfort food, give this BBQ Chicken Chili a try!

My 2019 Healthier Habit: Cooking, Grinding, and Baking With Whole Grains!

posted by Andrea | 01/14/2019 | 77 comments

For the past several years, I’ve chosen one or two smallish “Healthier Habits” to incorporate into my life and my family’s life — they’ve all stuck because I took my time to implement them and didn’t try to change everything at once.

Today I’m sharing more about my “healthier habit” for 2019 — cooking, grinding, and baking with whole grains!

10 Simple Food Swaps for Healthier Family Meals

posted by Andrea | 01/9/2019 | 9 comments

Over the last few years, I’ve slowly incorporated many more nutritious foods in our family meals… and to be honest, I’m SUPER impressed with how well it has worked (often without anyone noticing my swaps!)

If you’re looking for a few relatively simple ways to swap more nutritious foods into YOUR family meals, I think today’s post will give you a really great place to start!

My Favorite Greek and Italian Raw Veggie Salads (no lettuce)

posted by Andrea | 01/3/2019 | 25 comments

Today I’m sharing TWO of my favorite raw veggie salads. They are both SO flavorful, and an easy way to enjoy raw veggies without a lot of work or extra ingredients.

If you’re a salad-lover, I have a feeling you’ll like these salads too — even if it is a little strange to have a “salad” with no lettuce!

My Great Aunt’s Spiced Molasses Cookies!

posted by Andrea | 12/19/2018 | 30 comments

Growing up, one birthday tradition I loved more than most was when my great aunt Hilda (my mom’s aunt) brought us a huge platter of her delicious homemade spiced molasses cookies. 

I never got her recipe before she passed away… but then, 2 weeks ago, after a conversation with a distant relative, I stumbled across the recipe and have been enjoying these delicious cookies once again!

My Favorite 5-Part Foolproof Appetizer

posted by Andrea | 12/12/2018 | 30 comments

In an effort to simplify entertaining EVEN MORE, I have a favorite go-to appetizer platter that I can whip up in minutes if we have last-minute guests. I can also make it well in advance if I have the time.

This 5-part foolproof appetizer is perfect any time of year, for any type of party, and can accommodate almost any dietary restriction or food allergy. Plus, it’s super simple and uses many ingredients you can buy ahead, so you always have them in the house.