Strawberry Salsa

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A friend of mine mentioned this recipe for strawberry salsa, and I’m so glad she did! Since strawberries are in season here and have been priced so well, I loved trying out a new way to use them.

 

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My favorite strawberry recipe is still this strawberry pie, but this is a fun twist to serve at a get together. And, since fruit is so inexpensive while it’s in season, it’s a great way to take advantage of some great sales out there! Here’s the recipe so you can try it out too.

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I love all the fresh ingredients and it just looks SO pretty!

 

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STRAWBERRY SALSA

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 kiwis, peeled and diced
  • 2 Golden Delicious apples – peeled, cored and diced
  • 8 ounces raspberries
  • 1 pound strawberries diced
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons strawberry fruit preserves
  • 10 (10 inch) flour tortillas
  • butter flavored cooking spray
  • 2 tablespoons of cinnamon sugar

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DIRECTIONS

  1. In a large bowl mix kiwis, apples, raspberries, strawberries, white sugar, brown sugar and fruit preserves. Cover and chill in the refrigerator.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  3. Coat one side of flour tortillas with butter flavored cooking spray. Cut tortillas into wedges and place on a large baking sheet. Sprinkle wedges with cinnamon sugar. Spray again with cooking spray.
  4. Bake in the oven for 8 to 10 minutes and allow to cool. Serve with the salsa and enjoy!

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Recipe adapted from All Recipes

 

Looking for more great fruit recipes?

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Slow Cooker Taco Meat

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Easiest Slow Cooker Taco Meat - PINTEREST

This is a re-post of one of my favorite slow cooker recipes. Enjoy!

How to Cook Taco Meat in the Slow Cooker

This recipe just might change the way you look at ground beef, my friends.

And, really, give you a whole new reason to love your slow cooker. 

For years I’ve been convinced that there was no way on earth to cook ground beef in the crockpot (unless I pre-cooked it ahead of time for something like chili), however, I’ve thankfully been proved wrong.

 

With the way my children’s afternoon/evening schedules have looked, I’ve had a hard time getting much besides cereal on the table if Mrs. Potts doesn’t do the cooking, so I was determined to give it a shot.

Guess what?

It worked. 

 

We used the new Old El Paso Stand & Stuff Tacos that I found a few weeks ago on sale ~ my family loved them!

Everyone walked in for dinner around 6:15, I rolled out the fixins’ for our home-cooked taco bar, and everyone (this momma especially) was pretty well pleased.

I also made a little “secret sauce” for my husband and I to add to ours ~ just equal parts low fat ranch dressing and barbecue sauce.  To really fluff things up I even put out some stockpiled French’s Fried Onions for my husband to add to his, and he declared it one of the best meals we’ve had in awhile.

Whew.

‘Cause y’all know I worry that he likes his dinner. 😉

And to make things even better (does it get much better than a happy family at dinner time?), everything I used were items I’d gotten on sale for some crazy good deals. I’m pretty sure I spent less than $6 to feed our family of five ~ happy happy happy.

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Here’s how to get started if you’d like a penny-pinched-delicious-and-easy meal too this week.

How To Cook Taco Meat In The Slow Cooker {Perfect For Homemade Taco Bar Night}

Ingredients

  • Taco Seasoning packet (or make it from scratch if you'd prefer ~ I was just in a hurry)
  • 2 lbs. ground beef (get more if you'd like to make extra to freeze)
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1 1/2 cups water

Instructions

  1. Place ground beef, water, onion, salt, and garlic powder in slow cooker.
  2. Cook on high for about 2 hours, stirring occasionally (I stirred it twice throughout the day)
  3. When meat is almost cooked through, stir again and turn your slow cooker down to low.
  4. Cook an additional 1-2 hours.
  5. Add in taco seasoning packet and give it a stir, then cook 20 more minutes.
  6. Drain completely (will be a little liquidy from the water and some of the fat in the beef).
  7. Serve over tacos, and freeze any leftovers so that you don't have to start from scratch the next time around!
http://passionatepennypincher.com/2016/06/slow-cooker-taco-meat/

Note: I don’t think this is the kind of slow cooker meal that I’d start and then leave on all day if you’re not going to be home – I think you need to be there to give it a quick stir every so often. If you’re looking for a delicious beef recipe with just about no work involved, check this out. 

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Star Patriotic Pops

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Here’s such a fun patriotic treat to enjoy this summer! Super simple, and your kids will love helping you make these.

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Makes 4- prep- 5 minutes total time 4 hours 5 min

 

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INGREDIENTS / MATERIALS:

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DIRECTIONS:

  1. Wash and slice your pears into thin pieces.
  2. Use your star cookie cutter to cut out star shaped pears.
  3. Thaw your ice pops and fill 1/4 way full with the red ice pop, add in a few stars, place a lollipop stick in the center, and freeze for 1 hour.
  4. Now fill another 1/4 with the blue ice pop, add in a few more stars (you might need to center your lollipop stick at this point), and freeze for another hours.
  5. Repeat steps 3-4 until full and frozen.
  6. Place the plastic part of your mold under running hot water for 10-15 seconds, wiggle on your stick, and they will slide right out.

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*(apples can be used in place of pears as can a red and blue sports drink for juice)

 

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Looking for more patriotic desserts?

patrioticoreopops

ribbonjello2

 

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Nutter Butter Balls

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Y.u.m.

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My sweet niece Sarah visited over Easter and made these super yummy Nutter Butter Balls, and I’ve been waiting to share them with you! They were so good, so simple, and a huge hit at our house.

 

So, if you’re looking for a new twist on regular Oreo balls, I promise you’ll love these. Here’s what you’ll need  . . .

 

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Nutter Butter Balls

Ingredients:

  • 8 oz. package of cream cheese, softened
  • 24 Nutter Butter cookies, crushed (about 3 cups)
  • white melting chocolate
  • dark melting chocolate

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Directions:

  1. Mix cream cheese and nutter butter crumbs until combined.
  2. Shape into 48 1-inch balls – place in a shallow pan and freeze for 10 mins.
  3. Dip frozen balls into the melted chocolate and place on a pan lined with wax paper.
  4. Drizzle white and dark chocolate over the dipped balls for decoration.
  5. Refrigerate 1 hour or until firm.  Keep refrigerated and enjoy!

 

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Looking for more dessert recipes?

Recipe adapted from Tasty Kitchen.  If you need a little more menu inspiration, go HERE

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Greek Chicken Pasta

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So, this was my first attempt at a Mediterranean recipe (following the craziness we had two weeks ago ~ read more HERE.) I absolutely loved it, my kids didn’t love it so they stuck with pasta and grilled chicken, and my husband survived it but said it wasn’t all that bad.

 

 

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Not gonna lie ~ he’d choose Paula Deen’s fried chicken over Mediterranean Greek chicken any day.

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I thought it was fantastic though, so I’m sharing it. 🙂 It does have a lot of ingredients and isn’t the most penny pinched meal, but if you’re looking for a healthy option on the Mediterranean Diet, this one’s fantastic!

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Honestly the more I’m looking at recipes to try I think we’ll be sticking more and more to just whole foods eating (more fish, whole chicken, whole veggies, whole fruits ~ fewer carbs, and nothing processed), but I’m going to keep watching for Mediterranean recipes that look great along the way. I’m pretty convinced whole foods are the way to go (especially after following the 21 Day Fix for a few months), but always love trying new recipes out.

 

 

Greek Chicken Pasta

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  • 1 (16 ounce) package linguine pasta
  • 1/2 cup chopped red onion
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast meat – cut into bite-size pieces
  • 1 (14 ounce) can marinated artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
  • 1 large tomato, chopped
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 lemons, wedged, for garnish (optional)

Instructions

  1. Cook pasta according to package directions (boil for about 8-10 mins) and drain.
  2. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic; saute for about 2 minutes. Stir in the chicken and cook until chicken is no longer pink in the center and the juices run clear (about 5 to 6 mins).
  3. Reduce heat to medium-low ~ add artichoke hearts, tomato, feta cheese, parsley, lemon juice, oregano, and cooked pasta. Cook and stir until heated through (about 2 to 3 minutes). Season with salt and pepper, and garnish with lemon wedges (optional) and enjoy!

 

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Looking for more chicken recipes?

 

Recipe adapted from All Recipes.  If you need a little more menu inspiration, go HERE

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No Bake Chocolate Eclair Cake

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Don’t you just love when penny pinching makes you a wee bit resourceful, and the results turn out fantastic?

 

(Me too.)

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Last week my sweet boy turned sixteen.

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Sixteen.

 

 

However, over the weekend we’d purchased a new car (finally retiring my 10-year-old-190,000-mile-mini-van ~ eek!), and I’ve been determined to really be wise with our finances. (We were able to purchase our new-to-us-car using cash which is the coolest feeling ever. But, shelling out that much cash that’s been saved hurts just a bit!)

 

So, I decided I was absolutely not going to buy anything we didn’t need for at least a few weeks.

 

And then I remembered that I needed a cake for my cute kid’s birthday.

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I went through my pantry, fridge and freezer to try to come up some genius plan, and remembered this E’clair cake a friend of mine made for us years ago.

 

It usually calls for cool whip, but I only had Kroger Reddi Whip in the fridge, so decided to make that work.

Goodness, that boy of mine was in heaven.

 

In fact, he asked this weekend if I could make him some e’clair cake again.

 

The moral of the story?

 

Get a little creative with what you already have before spending more moo-lah ($40 for a cookie cake? No thanks!) and your family might just enjoy that little penny-pinched-splurge too.

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Directions

Mix together cool whip or reddi whip, pudding and milk. Layer graham crackers on bottom of 9×13 baking dish.

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Next, spread half pudding mixture over graham crackers, then cover with another layer of graham crackers.

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Spread remaining pudding mixture over graham crackers, then top with another layer of graham crackers.

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Pop frosting in microwave and heat for about 30 seconds. Then spread carefully over graham cracker layer.

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Refrigerate for 4-6 hours, then serve.

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No Bake Chocolate Eclair Cake

Ingredients:

2 packages instant vanilla pudding
2 cans of dairy whipped topping (or one tub of non-dairy whipped topping)
3 cups milk
1 package graham crackers
1 container chocolate frosting

Directions:

  1. In a bowl mix together the pudding mix, whipped topping, and milk until completely combined.
  2. Place a single layer of graham crackers in the bottom of a 9×13″ dish. Spread half the pudding mixture over the graham crackers. Top the pudding layer with another layer of graham crackers.  Add the other half of the pudding mixture and top that with a final layer of graham crackers.
  3. Spread frosting over the graham cracker layer all the way up to the edges of the pan. Cover and chill for at least 4 hours before serving.

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Looking for more dessert recipes?

Recipe adapted from All Recipes.  If you need a little more menu inspiration, go HERE

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Menu Plan Monday: Week Of 4/18/16

 

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Good. gravy.

 

Do you feel life like is just racing by, and you’re in the backseat praying things will just slow down a wee bit?

 

Me too. 

 

After a big trip to Canada for Spring Break, a crazy season starting for my kids of soccer, track, and rugby (my son is playing rugby. please. pray. yikes. really. yikes.) and some big projects here on PPP, I feel like menu planning has been thrown right on out the window at our house.

 

So this morning I took a step back, started thinking about my first love here in my home as homemaker, and decided to get some control.

 

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I shined my kitchen sink (don’t you love my little sign? I ordered it from Crystal and just love it as well as my Mrs. Meyer’s soap from my last Prime Pantry order)

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Then I shared a quick video of my main 21 Day Fix must-have-foods with our PPP 21 Day Fix group (it’s not too late to join if you sign up today ~ go HERE to learn more!)

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 I popped chicken and dumplings in Mrs. Potts, 

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and even tackled our laundry pile.

 

Success!

 

While I love sharing deals here on PPP and running my little business from home, by far taking care of my favorites come first, and it was so nice to start off taking care of them first today. 

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Curious what’s on our menu plan this week? Here you go:

  • MondaySlow Cooker Chicken and Dumplings, green beans, biscuits, salad (We don’t normally eat these kind of meals especially when I’m 21 Day Fixin‘ but I’ll have a big salad and we haven’t had a night off from activities in ages. This is my family’s favorite meal so I’m treating them after not really cooking in 3 weeks, but there was a tiny piece of me considering swinging by Sonic for 50¢ cheeseburgers!)
  • TuesdaySlow Cooker Brown Sugar Pork Tenderloin, salad, brown rice, veggies
  • Wednesday – Leftovers
  • Thursday – Breakfast for dinner (we have soccer, rugby, track and cheer on Thursdays – eggs and fresh fruit it is!)
  • Friday – 21 Day Fix Grilled chicken (I’ll share the recipe I use later this week ~ I just sprinkle seasoning salt on chicken tenderloins, spray with Pam cooking spray, and broil for 4 minutes on each side until cooked through), baked potatoes, salad, veggies

 

 

Check out my recipes to try board on Pinterest, and see more penny-pinched recipe ideas.  

 

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Baked Chimichangas

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Here’s an easy recipe if your family loves Mexican like mine does!  This is what you’ll need . . .

 

 

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First, sauté the garlic, onions and pepper in a greased skillet over medium heat.

 

Then add in your turkey and spices until completely cooked.  Drain any excess fat from the pan and add in the tomato sauce and let simmer so all the flavors come together.

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Next, spoon the turkey mixture onto your tortilla, add some cheese and roll it up.

 

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Then start by folding in the sides and then roll away, place them seam side down on a greased baking sheet.

 

 

Spray them quickly with cooking spray or olive oil (to make the crisp up) and pop them in a 400 degree oven for about 20 mins.

 

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Yum!

 

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Baked Chimichangas

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Spray a pan with cooking spray (or use some olive oil) and add in the garlic, onions and peppers.
  2. Add the turkey or ground beef, chili powder, oregano, and cumin
  3. Break up the turkey or ground beef until browned and drain.
  4. Stir in the tomato sauce, bringing to a boil.
  5. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, until the flavors are blended and the mixture thickens.
  6. Spoon the meat mixture onto each tortilla and top with the cheddar cheese.
  7. Fold in the sides and then roll to enclose the filling.
  8. Place the chimichangas seam-side down on a greased baking sheet.
  9. Lightly spray the tops of the tortillas with nonstick spray or olive oil.
  10. Bake at 400 degrees until golden , about 20 minutes and enjoy!

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Recipe adapted from Kitch Me. If you need a little more menu inspiration, go HERE

 

Looking for more Mexican inspired dishes?  Try these:

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3 Ingredient Easter Nests

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You guys …  are you looking for something quick and easy to add to your Easter menu?  These cute nests took just ten minutes to make!!

 

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Here’s what you’ll need . . .

 

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Melt candy coating in the microwave and dump in the chow mein noodles …

 

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Drop by tablespoons onto parchment paper, add Cadbury mini eggs (I love those!)

 

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And use them to decorate your table.

 

You’re welcome. 🙂 

 

Hope your family is enjoying a wonderful Easter weekend!

 

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Easter Nests

  • 1 lb of candy coating (vanilla or chocolate)
  • 1 bag of Chow Mein Noodles
  • Cadbury Mini Eggs

Directions:

  1. Microwave the candy melt for 1 minuet.  Stir and melt again in 15 second intervals until completely melted.
  2. Dump the chow mein noodles into the melted chocolate and mix until they are all evenly coated.
  3. Drop the “nests” onto parchment paper using a spoon.
  4. Place two Cadbury mini eggs on top and you are done!

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Whoopie Pie Cake

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Oh my word.

 

You have got to make this cake.

 

It’s got everything you need rolled right up in one perfect cake, and your family will rave about your baking skills. 🙂 

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Start off with a chocolate cake mix (substituting the oil for unsweetened applesauce, and adding an extra egg – I forgot to include a picture of the applesauce in the picture!)

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Now, beat up the whoopie pie filling.  Mix in butter and marshmallow cream until it’s nice and fluffy . . .  then add in the powdered sugar until combined.

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Dump all that whoopie pie filling on the first layer of your cake and spread around evenly.

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Top with your second layer and get ready to make the ganache.

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Ganache is so easy to make ~ don’t let the name fool you (just two ingredients!)  Heat up your half and half on the stove and just before it starts to boil, remove it from the heat.

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Dump in your chocolate chips and stir gently …

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… until they’re all completely melted.

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Spread that perfect ganache all over the cake, and let your friends share what an amazing cook you are.

 

You’re welcome. 🙂 

 

Yummmmmm!

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Whoopie Pie Cake

CAKE
  • 1 box of chocolate cake mix (prepared per package directions – subbing unsweetened applesauce for the oil and adding one extra egg)
WHOOPIE PIE FILLING
  • 1 cup butter at room temperature
  • 2 cups marshmallow fluff
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
GANACHE
  • ½ cup half and half
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Directions:

Whoopie Pie Cake

  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. Spray or Grease 2 9×13 pans.
  3. Prepare cake according to package directions, subbing unsweetened applesauce for the oil and adding one extra egg.
  4. Split the batter between the 2 pans and bake for 15-20 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean.
  5. Let the cakes cool completely.

Whoopie Pie Filling

  1. Mix the butter and marshmallow fluff together until smooth.
  2. Slowly add in the powdered sugar until smooth.
  3. Spread the whoopie pie filling on top of one of the cakes. Top this with the other cake.

Whoopie Pie Ganache

  1. In small saucepan bring the half and half to an almost boil.
  2. Quickly remove from the heat and stir in the chocolate chips until smooth.
  3. Allow to cool for 10 minutes and spread evenly over the cake.

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Recipe adapted from Cookies & Cups.

Looking for more amazing dessert recipes?

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