Budget Bytes https://www.budgetbytes.com Delicious Recipes Designed for Small Budgets Thu, 12 Sep 2019 21:05:50 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.2.3 Easy Baked Homemade Croutons https://www.budgetbytes.com/easy-baked-homemade-croutons/ https://www.budgetbytes.com/easy-baked-homemade-croutons/#comments Sat, 14 Sep 2019 15:01:09 +0000 https://www.budgetbytes.com/?p=45364 I whipped up a quick small batch of these easy baked homemade croutons this past week when I made my Rosemary Garlic White Bean Soup and I thought, “I really need to share how easy these are.” Because not only do their crispy, crunchy texture really take any soup or salad to the next level, […]

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I whipped up a quick small batch of these easy baked homemade croutons this past week when I made my Rosemary Garlic White Bean Soup and I thought, “I really need to share how easy these are.” Because not only do their crispy, crunchy texture really take any soup or salad to the next level, they’re a great way to use up leftover bread. Win-win!

A large salad with romaine, Parmesan, grape tomatoes, and easy baked homemade croutons.

How to Use Homemade Croutons

Croutons are a classic crunchy salad topper, but they’re also fantastic in any sort of thick soup, like Tomato Soup, Split Pea Soup, Rosemary Garlic White Bean Soup, or even my Smoky Potato and Chickpea Stew.

Croutons can also be crumbled and used as a crunchy topping for pasta (as a non-dairy alternative to Parmesan), or even crushed and used as a breading for meat or fish in place of regular or panko bread crumbs.

Flavor Your Homemade Croutons

The recipe below is for basic garlic herb homemade croutons, but I actually think they’re great even when seasoned with just salt! Some other seasoning ideas include: adding grated Parmesan, Cajun seasoning, cracked pepper and sea salt, or rosemary and pepper (fresh rosemary is probably best for this one, chopped finely).

Front view of a large salad in a bowl topped with homemade croutons

What Kind of Bread is Best for Homemade Croutons?

You definitely want to get a really sturdy, crusty, fairly dense bread for homemade croutons. Anything light and airy, like white sandwich bread, will just not have the structure needed to make a good crouton. It will dissolve in your mouth like cotton candy instead of giving you a nice crunch!

Your bread can be either fresh or stale when you make homemade croutons. In fact, it’s a fantastic way to use up the ends of a loaf of bread that is on its way out.

How to Store Homemade Croutons

I made this a small batch recipe, only about 3-4 cups, or about 4 servings, because homemade croutons are definitely best when made fresh. After baking and cooling, you can store leftover croutons in an air-tight container, but they will probably go stale a bit faster than store bought croutons (the actual length of time will vary based on several factors). To extend their shelf life, you can freeze your homemade croutons (again, in an air-tight container).

 

Easy Baked Homemade Croutons

Homemade croutons are a super easy to make, and their crispy, crunchy texture takes any soup or salad to the next level! Only five ingredients!

  • 4 slices sturdy bread ($0.33)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil ($0.32)
  • 1/4 tsp Italian seasoning blend ($0.03)
  • 1/8 tsp garlic powder ($0.02)
  • 1/8 tsp salt ($0.01)
  1. Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Cut the bread into 1/2-inch cubes. You should have about 4 loosely packed cups of bread cubes.

  2. Place the cubed bread in a large bowl and drizzle the olive oil over top. Use a spatula or your hands to gently toss the bread cubes until they are coated in oil.

  3. Combine the Italian seasoning blend, garlic powder, and salt in a small bowl, then sprinkle the mixture over the bread cubes. Gently toss the bread cubes again until they are evenly coated in seasoning.

  4. Spread the seasoned bread out onto a baking sheet. Transfer the baking sheet to the oven and bake for about 10 minutes*, checking the color of the bread every 5 minutes. Stir the croutons and bake for an additional 2-3 minutes, if needed, to get the croutons to a nice deep golden brown color. Let the croutons cool slightly before serving.

*The cook time can vary significantly depending on the density and moisture level of the bread (whether it is stale or fresh), so check the croutons every five minutes.

Step by Step Photos

Four slices of French Bread on a cutting board next to the rest of the loaf.

This is a small batch recipe for homemade croutons because I believe they’re best when made fresh, and this batch size is perfect for when you only have a few slices of bread left! You’ll need about 4 slices of bread or about 4 cups once cubed. Preheat the oven to 400ºF.

Cubed bread on a cutting board next to two slices of bread

Cut the bread into 1/2-inch cubes. It’s best to try to get the cubes into a fairly uniform size so they bake evenly. You can also tear the bread into chunks for a more rustic look, but again, try to get them fairly uniform in size.

Oil being drizzled over bread cubes in a bowl

Place the bread cubes in a large bowl and drizzle 2 Tbsp olive oil over top. Gently toss the bread cubes until they are coated in oil.

Herbs being sprinkled over bread cubes.

Combining the seasoning in a small bowl first helps them be more evenly distributed on the croutons. Combine 1/4 tsp Italian seasoning blend, 1/8 tsp garlic powder, and 1/8 tsp salt in a small bowl. Sprinkle the herbs over the bread cubes and gently toss again until they are coated.

Homemade Croutons on the baking sheet ready to bake

Spread the seasoned bread cubes out onto a baking sheet, then transfer them to the oven.

Baked homemade croutons on the baking sheet

The baking time for the croutons can vary quite a bit depending on the density of your bread and its moisture level, so check them every 5 minutes or so. When they’re just starting to turn golden, give them a stir, and bake for a few more minutes until they are deeply golden. My croutons baked for 10 minutes, then I stirred, and baked for 2 minutes more. Let the croutons cool slightly before serving.

Overhead view of a large salad bowl with easy homemade baked croutons, Parmesan, and tomatoes.

Stale bread never tasted so good. 😜

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Pesto Grilled Cheese with Sun Dried Tomatoes https://www.budgetbytes.com/pesto-grilled-cheese-with-sun-dried-tomatoes/ https://www.budgetbytes.com/pesto-grilled-cheese-with-sun-dried-tomatoes/#comments Thu, 12 Sep 2019 15:36:23 +0000 https://www.budgetbytes.com/?p=45342 I went all Splurgy McSpurgison on this Pesto Grilled Cheese Sandwich, but you know what? It was so worth it. And still a fraction of what it would cost to buy a fancy schmancy sandwich like this at a deli. So here it is. When you need a little splurge in your life, or you […]

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I went all Splurgy McSpurgison on this Pesto Grilled Cheese Sandwich, but you know what? It was so worth it. And still a fraction of what it would cost to buy a fancy schmancy sandwich like this at a deli. So here it is. When you need a little splurge in your life, or you just have some leftover pesto that needs to be used up, make this Pesto Grilled Cheese with Sun Dried Tomatoes. You won’t regret it.

Two halves of a Pesto Grilled Cheese Sandwich stacked with cut sides facing the camera. Blue background.

What Kind of Pesto Should I Use?

I used my homemade Kale Pesto for this sandwich, but it works just as well with store-bought pesto, of any flavor. 

What Kind of Cheese Should I Use?

I used fresh mozzarella because I love the way it melts, but you can use block or grated mozzarella in its place (that’s usually more affordable as well). Other types of cheese that would work great with pesto are: smoked mozzarella, gruyere, swiss, brie, or white cheddar. 

What Kind of Bread Should I Use?

You definitely want to get some sort of sturdy, crusty bread for this sandwich. Pesto is fairly oily in nature, so it will soak right through a delicate sandwich bread. Go for something thick, robust, and sturdy. If you want to make your own, try my No Knead Bread.

Add-Ins for Your Pesto Grilled Cheese

I added some sun dried tomatoes to my Pesto Grilled Cheese, which added a nice sweet-tart pop of flavor against the creamy cheese and salty pesto. The sun dried tomatoes are totally optional, but they do take things to the next level. Some other add-in ideas are: fresh spinach, fresh tomatoes, avocado, roasted red peppers, olives, or ham. OMG, I’m totally drooling right now.

Two hands pulling the pesto grilled cheese sandwich in half, with the cheese pulling between and sun dried tomato pieces exposed.

 

Pesto Grilled Cheese

Whether you're using up leftover pesto or just want to treat yourself to something special, this Pesto Grilled Cheese is next level!

  • 2 slices hearty bread ($0.75)
  • 1 Tbsp butter ($0.13)
  • 2 Tbsp pesto ($0.42)
  • 2 sun dried tomato pieces ($0.55)
  • 2 oz. mozzarella ($0.60)
  1. Spread 1/2 Tbsp butter over one side of each piece of bread. Spread 1 Tbsp pesto over the opposite side of each piece of bread. The butter sides will be facing out on the sandwich and the pesto sides facing in.

  2. Cut the sun dried tomatoes into small pieces. Sprinkle them over one of the pesto coated surface of bread. Add the mozzarella on top of the sun dried tomatoes (shred or break the mozzarella into small pieces to facilitate fast melting). Place the other piece of bread on top, pesto side facing in.

  3. Place the sandwich in a small skillet and heat over medium-low until golden brown on one side. Flip and cook until golden brown on the other side, and the cheese is melted on the inside (about 3-5 minutes each side). Serve hot.

Scroll down for the step by step photos!
Two stacked pieces of pesto grilled cheese next to a bowl and small knife with pesto on it.

Step by Step Photos

Pesto being spread onto two slices of bread, a bowl of pesto on the side.

Smear 1/2 Tbsp of butter over one side of two pieces of bread. Flip the bread over and spread 1 Tbsp pesto on the opposite sides. The butter sides will be facing out on the sandwich, and the pesto sides facing in.

Sun dried tomato pieces added to pesto on bread.

Cut two pieces of sun dried tomato into small pieces, then sprinkle them over one half of the sandwich.

Add mozzarella to sandwich, in small pieces.

Add 2 oz. mozzarella on top of the sun dried tomatoes. If you’re using shredded mozzarella, add as-is. If you are using slices, break them into small pieces so they’ll melt faster.

Cooked Pesto Grilled Cheese in the skillet

Close the sandwich by placing the second piece of bread on top, pesto side facing in. Place the sandwich in a skillet and cook over medium-low until the bread is golden brown. Flip the sandwich and cook on the second side until the bread is golden brown and the cheese is melted on the inside. I find that cooking on a slightly lower heat (medium-low instead of medium) gives the inside time to heat and melt the cheese before the outside burns.

Hands holding a stacked pesto grilled cheese facing the camera.

Serve while the pesto grilled cheese is still hot and melty!! (And no, I didn’t plan my nail color to match the toothpick! Happy accident!)

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Homemade Kale Pesto https://www.budgetbytes.com/homemade-kale-pesto/ https://www.budgetbytes.com/homemade-kale-pesto/#comments Mon, 09 Sep 2019 21:48:49 +0000 https://www.budgetbytes.com/?p=45325 I’ve made kale pesto before (Kale Pesto Pasta), but I felt like the pesto needed a post itself. I often find myself with leftover fresh kale (why does it come in such HUGE qantities?), scrambling for ways to use it up before it gets slimy. Making a small batch of this Kale Pesto is one […]

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I’ve made kale pesto before (Kale Pesto Pasta), but I felt like the pesto needed a post itself. I often find myself with leftover fresh kale (why does it come in such HUGE qantities?), scrambling for ways to use it up before it gets slimy. Making a small batch of this Kale Pesto is one great option. Once the kale is turned into pesto, it can be smeared or drizzled on just about anything.

(Another great option for leftover kale is to freeze it. Frozen kale is great sautéing and adding to pasta or pizza, or for tossing into soups, like Zuppa Toscana or Smoky Potato Chickpea Stew!)

A bowl of Kale Pesto on a wooden cutting board surrounded by lemons, walnuts, kale, and Parmesan

How to Use Kale Pesto

Kale pesto is good on EVERYTHING. Use it as a sandwich spread (I have a pesto grilled cheese coming your way later this week), drizzle it on eggs, in soups (I drizzled it on my Rosemary Garlic White Bean Soup the other day), You can mix it into dips like hummus, toss with freshly cooked pasta, or use it as a sauce for pizza. Just put it on everything. You won’t be disappointed.

Why Kale Pesto?

So there are a couple of reasons that I like to make pesto with kale. First, it’s usually a lot less expensive and more accessible than large quantities of fresh basil, especially as we move into the fall and winter months (kale is a cold weather crop). Second, I always find myself with extra kale, so it’s a great way to make sure those leftover bits don’t go to waste. It does have a decidedly more bitter flavor than basil pesto, but if you’re a bitter flavor lover like me, that will be a bonus.

Close up of Kale Pesto on a spoon with the bowl in the background.

How Long Does Kale Pesto Last?

Because kale pesto contains fresh kale, it will only be good in your refrigerator for 3-4 days. The fresh kale in the pesto will begin to rot (and get stinky), just as the fresh leaves do. That’s one reason I made this a fairly small batch, yielding only about one cup.

That being said, you CAN freeze pesto! Most people like to freeze it in 1-2 Tbsp portions for easy thawing later. The easiest way to do that is in an ice cube tray, then transferring to a freezer bag once solid.

Can I Add Other Fresh Herbs?

Yes, yes, yes! If you have access to other fresh herbs, like basil, parsley, or even spinach, feel free to toss them in there with your kale! 

What Kind of Parmesan Should I Use?

There’s no arguing that fresh Parmesan in block or wedge form is far superior to the grated Parmesan bought in a can. That being said, I made this pesto with the kind in a can just to make sure it was still tasty even with a more affordable ingredient. If you have access to the better stuff, go ahead and use it! :) 

 

Kale Pesto

Making a small batch of kale pesto is a great way to use leftover kale. This flavorful pesto is great on sandwiches, in soups, dips, and more!

  • 4 cups torn kale leaves ($1.06)
  • 1/3 cup olive oil ($0.85)
  • 1 fresh lemon ($0.37)
  • 1 clove garlic ($0.08)
  • 1/4 cup walnuts ($0.30)
  • 1/3 cup Parmesan ($0.59)
  • 1/2 tsp salt ($0.02)
  • Freshly cracked pepper ($0.03)
  1. Make sure your kale leaves are washed well, any excess water is drained away, and any hard stems removed. Zest and juice the lemon.

  2. Add the kale, 1/4 cup lemon juice, 1/2 tsp lemon zest, olive oil, garlic, walnuts, Parmesan, salt, and some freshly cracked pepper to a food processor. Process until the mixture is a fine textured paste. Taste and adjust the salt, pepper, or lemon if desired. If you want a runnier pesto for drizzling, add extra oil, or up to 2 Tbsp water.

P.S. if you have frozen whole lemons, they would work great for this recipe! 

Overhead view of a bowl full of kale pesto with a black spoon in the middle

Step by Step Photos

Kale pesto ingredients in the food processor, whole.

Make sure your kale is washed well, excess water is drained away, and any large woody stems removed (I buy mine bagged and pre-chopped, but still need to remove some stems). Zest and juice the lemon. Add about 4 cups of kale to a food processor along with 1/3 cup olive oil, 1/4 cup lemon juice, 1/2 tsp lemon zest, 1 clove garlic, 1/4 cup walnuts, 1/3 cup Parmesan, 1/2 tsp salt, and some freshly cracked pepper.

Processed Kale Pesto in the food processor

Process the mixture until it is a fine textured paste. Taste, and adjust the lemon, salt, or pepper if desired. If you want the pesto to be a bit runnier (so you can drizzle it on things), you can add more oil or up to 2 Tbsp water.

overhead view of a bowl of kale pesto surrounded by the ingredients

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Easy Rosemary Garlic White Bean Soup https://www.budgetbytes.com/easy-rosemary-garlic-white-bean-soup/ https://www.budgetbytes.com/easy-rosemary-garlic-white-bean-soup/#comments Sun, 08 Sep 2019 00:39:09 +0000 https://www.budgetbytes.com/?p=45295 This past week I was talking to a reporter from MarketWatch and as I told the story of Budget Bytes I joked about being a broke college graduate and not wanting to eat canned beans times a day. Well, I’m kind of eating my words now because when canned beans are prepared like this, I […]

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This past week I was talking to a reporter from MarketWatch and as I told the story of Budget Bytes I joked about being a broke college graduate and not wanting to eat canned beans times a day. Well, I’m kind of eating my words now because when canned beans are prepared like this, I seriously could eat them all day, every day! This easy Rosemary Garlic White Bean Soup only takes eight simple ingredients, is crazy flavorful, and will give you all those warm cozy fall vibes!

Three bowls of Rosemary Garlic White Bean Soup with different toppings like toasted bread, croutons, and pesto.

How to Serve Rosemary Garlic White Bean Soup

This soup is fairly simple at heart, but still has bold flavor that stands up on its own, with maybe just a piece of crusty bread for dipping. That being said, I got creative when I was photographing the soup and started added some fun toppings. I drizzled a little pesto over one bowl, topped another with some homemade croutons, and shaved a bit of fresh Parmesan over another. I can also imagine a little melty gruyere or smoked mozzarella would be fabulous, or even just a dash of hot sauce.

Optional Add-Ins

You know I like to keep things simple, but if you happen to have these ingredients on hand and need to use them up, feel free to toss them into your Rosemary Garlic White Bean Soup: 

  • Diced carrots, onion, or celery sautéed with the garlic 
  • Bacon cooked until brown, the fat used in place of the olive oil (remove bacon and add back to the soup after cooking)
  • Ham sautéed before the garlic until crispy 
  • Zucchini added with the beans
  • Kale or spinach stirred into the soup at the end
  • Lemon juice added to the soup after cooking (1-2 Tbsp)

Can I Use Dry Beans?

You can definitely make a similar soup using dry beans, but it would require several extra steps, which I would need to test before offering instructions. 

A bowl of Rosemary Garlic White Bean Soup with croutons and a black spoon in the middle

Can I Make This in an Instant Pot?

Since this soup doesn’t require any fancy techniques, you can probably just use the “soup” function on the Instant Pot (you may still want to use the sauté function for the first step with the garlic and oil). But it’s so fast on the stove top, it might be faster to do it this way than waiting for the IP to come up to pressure and depressurize!

Can I Freeze This Rosemary Garlic White Bean Soup?

Absolutely! This soup will freeze very well. I made a fairly small batch, but you can easily double it and freeze half for later. To double the recipe, change the number of servings in the recipe card below to 8, and all the other ingredients will auto adjust.

 

Easy Rosemary Garlic White Bean Soup

This incredibly easy Rosemary Garlic White Bean Soup takes only eight simple ingredients to deliver a bowl full of rich, bold flavor.

  • 2 Tbsp olive oil ($0.32)
  • 4 cloves garlic ($0.32)
  • 3 15 oz. cans cannellini beans ($1.47)
  • 2 cups vegetable (or chicken) broth ($0.26)
  • 1/2 tsp dried rosemary ($0.05)
  • 1/4 tsp dried thyme ($0.02)
  • 1 pinch crushed red pepper ($0.02)
  • freshly cracked pepper to taste ($0.03)
  1. Before you begin, pour one of the cans of cannellini beans (with its liquid) into a blender and purée until smooth. Drain the other two cans of beans.

  2. Mince the garlic and add it to a soup pot with the olive oil. Sauté the garlic over medium for about one minute, or just until the garlic is very fragrant.

  3. Add the puréed cannellini beans, the other two cans of drained beans, broth, rosemary, thyme, crushed red pepper, and some freshly cracked pepper. Stir to combine.

  4. Place a lid on the pot, turn the heat up to medium-high, and bring the soup to a boil. Once boiling, turn the heat down to medium low, remove the lid, and allow it to simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

  5. Smash the beans slightly to thicken the soup even more. Taste the soup and add salt if needed (I did not add any, this will depend on the salt content of your broth). Serve hot, with crusty bread for dipping!

Scroll down for the step by step photos!

Close up of a ladle full of rosemary garlic white bean soup hovering over the soup pot, steam coming off the soup.

Love beans as much as I do? Check out my entire recipe category dedicated to BEANS! :D

Step by Step Photos

Pureed white beans in a blender, from above.

Before you begin, add one can of cannellini beans, with the liquid in the can, to a blender and purée until smooth.

Minced garlic and olive oil in a soup pot

Mince four cloves of garlic and add them to a soup pot with 2 Tbsp olive oil. Sauté over medium for about one minute, or just until the garlic becomes really fragrant.

Add white beans (whole and pureed) to the soup pot

Add two DRAINED cans of cannellini beans, plus the can of puréed beans to the soup pot.

Broth and herbs added to the soup.

Also add 2 cups vegetable or chicken broth, 1/2 tsp dried rosemary, 1/4 tsp dried thyme, a pinch of red pepper flakes, and some freshly cracked pepper. Stir to combine.

Simmered rosemary garlic white bean soup

Place a lid on the pot, turn the heat up to medium-high, and bring it up a boil. Once boiling, turn the heat down to medium low, remove the lid, and let it simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. After simmering for 15 minutes, smash some of the beans to thicken the soup even more. Give it a taste and add salt if needed (I did not add any). 

Three bowls of rosemary garlic white bean soup with different toppings (pesto, croutons, Parmesan).

Serve the soup hot with crusty bread for dipping, or whatever fun toppings you might have on hand!

Close up of a spoonful of rosemary garlic white bean soup.

 

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Maple Sage Breakfast Sausage https://www.budgetbytes.com/maple-sage-breakfast-sausage/ https://www.budgetbytes.com/maple-sage-breakfast-sausage/#comments Tue, 03 Sep 2019 17:19:32 +0000 https://www.budgetbytes.com/?p=45257 Making breakfast an event on Sunday is one of my favorite things. I’d much rather make something from scratch at home (in my PJ’s) than go wait in line for 45 minutes at a brunch spot, only to be rushed through the meal. I’ve been working on this recipe for Maple Sage Breakfast Sausage for […]

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Making breakfast an event on Sunday is one of my favorite things. I’d much rather make something from scratch at home (in my PJ’s) than go wait in line for 45 minutes at a brunch spot, only to be rushed through the meal. I’ve been working on this recipe for Maple Sage Breakfast Sausage for the past couple of weeks and I’m delighted so say that it’s the perfect way to make your weekend breakfast a little extra special without having to put in a lot of extra work. It’s as easy as 1-2-3. Mix, shape, cook!

This recipe is super simple, super fast, and also reheats fabulously (hello, breakfast for dinner). So if you’re the type that likes to meal prep their breakfast, you’re going to love this Maple Sage Breakfast Sausage!

Two maple sage breakfast sausage patties on a plate with eggs and toast, and a glass of orange juice on the side.

Can I Use Pork instead of Turkey?

Yes! I used ground turkey for my Maple Sage Breakfast Sausage, but you can absolutely use ground pork. The ground turkey I used was 93% lean, 7% fat, so keep in mind that if you use a higher fat content pork your sausages may shrink more when cooked.

How to Prep Maple Sage Breakfast Sausage Ahead

If you want to prepare these breakfast sausages ahead, you have a few options. First, you can make the seasoned meat mixture the night before, either shaping them the night before or waiting until morning to shape and cook them. If shaping them the night before you can stack them between sheets of parchment or waxed paper for storage in the refrigerator.

If you’re meal prepping, simply fully cook the sausages as directed below, place them in meal prep containers, and refrigerate right away. To reheat you can either microwave, or reheat in a skillet.

Close up of four Maple Sage Breakfast Sausages in a cast iron skillet

How to Freeze Maple Sage Breakfast Sausage

You can also freeze the uncooked patties. Simply mix and shape the sausages, freeze them flat on a baking sheet lined with parchment, then once frozen transfer them to an air-tight freezer storage container, like a freezer bag. You can transfer to the refrigerator the night before to thaw, or thaw at room temperature for about 30 minutes before cooking (do not leave them at room temperature longer, or they can become a food safety hazard).

Do I have to use Maple Syrup?

While you don’t have to add maple syrup to these sausages, it does give them the most subtly delicious sweet maple flavor that I find absolutely to die for. It also helps caramelize the outsides of the sausages just a little. And you definitely want to use real maple syrup for this recipe, not “pancake syrup,” which is a cheaper maple syrup alternative (flavored and colored corn syrup).

Tablescape with two plates full of eggs, toast, and maple sage breakfast sausage, a cast iron skillet with sausage, and drinks

 

Maple Sage Breakfast Sausage

Maple Sage Breakfast Sausage is an easy way to make your weekend breakfast a little extra special, or to meal prep your breakfast protein for the week!

  • 19 oz. ground turkey ($3.49)
  • 1 tsp dried sage ($0.10)
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme ($0.05)
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder ($0.03)
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika ($0.05)
  • 1 Tbsp maple syrup ($0.30)
  • 1/2 tsp salt ($0.02)
  • freshly cracked pepper ($0.03)
  • 1 Tbsp cooking oil ($0.04)
  1. Add the ground turkey, sage, thyme, garlic powder, smoked paprika, maple syrup, salt, and some freshly cracked pepper to a bowl. Use your hands to mix the ingredients together until the ground turkey is evenly seasoned.

  2. Using a 1/4 cup measuring cup, portion and shape the ground meat mixture into patties. After measuring out 1/4 cup, make sure to flatten the patties until they are very thin, as they'll shrink inward and get thicker in the center as they cook. The shaped patties should be about 3-inches wide.

  3. To cook the Maple Sage Breakfast Sausage, add 1 Tbsp cooking oil to a skillet and heat over medium. Once hot, add the sausage patties (working in two batches if needed to prevent over crowding the skillet) and cook 3-5 minutes on each side, or until browned on the outside and cooked through. Serve hot.

Scroll down for the step by step photos!

Overhead of a cast iron skillet with five cooked Maple Sage Breakfast Sausage patties

Step by Step Photos

Ground turkey and seasoning

Add 19 oz. ground turkey, 1 tsp dried sage, 1/2 tsp dried thyme, 1/4 tsp garlic powder, 1/2 tsp smoked paprika, 1 Tbsp maple syrup, 1/2 tsp salt, and some freshly cracked pepper to a bowl. Use your hands to mix the ingredients together until the ground turkey is evenly seasoned.

shaped maple sage breakfast sausages on a cutting board

Use a 1/4 cup measuring cup to portion and shape the Maple Sage Breakfast Sausages. You’ll want to flatten the patties quite a bit, until they’re about 3-inches across, because they shrink inward and get a lot thicker as they cook.

Cooked Maple Sage Breakfast Sausage in a cast iron skillet

To cook the sausage, heat 1 Tbsp cooking oil in a large skillet over medium. Once hot, add your maple sage breakfast sausage patties, working in two batches if needed to prevent over crowding the skillet. Cook the sausage patties for 3-5 minutes on each side, or until they are well browned and cooked through.

A breakfast plate with eggs, toast, and maple sage breakfast sausage, next to a newspaper and glass of orange juice.

Serve immediately and enjoy!

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Blueberry Lemon Curd Shortcakes https://www.budgetbytes.com/blueberry-lemon-curd-shortcakes/ https://www.budgetbytes.com/blueberry-lemon-curd-shortcakes/#comments Sun, 01 Sep 2019 18:36:59 +0000 https://www.budgetbytes.com/?p=45233 Do you need a Sunday baking project? Sure you do. Who doesn’t need something to bake while they’re chillin’ on a Sunday afternoon? Well, these Blueberry Lemon Curd Shortcakes so easy that I don’t know if you can really call it a “project,” but eating them will definitely be an event because these little show […]

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Do you need a Sunday baking project? Sure you do. Who doesn’t need something to bake while they’re chillin’ on a Sunday afternoon? Well, these Blueberry Lemon Curd Shortcakes so easy that I don’t know if you can really call it a “project,” but eating them will definitely be an event because these little show stoppers are pretty epic. So join me in celebrating the last of the summer fruit by making some Blueberry Lemon Curd Shortcakes!

A Blueberry Lemon Curd Shortcake on a white plate with black fork surrounded by the ingredients

Totally From Scratch, Baby!

If you want to impress someone, this dessert is the one to do it. Not only is it stunning, but you can also brag about it being made totally from scratch (don’t worry, it’s still insanely easy). I used my Luscious Homemade Lemon Curd to top these shortcakes, but if you’re looking to keep things simple, you can definitely swap it out for store bought lemon curd. 

Can I Use Frozen Blueberries?

I was lucky enough to catch these fresh summer blueberries on sale, but the rest of the year you can definitely use frozen blueberries. Just keep in mind that frozen blueberries are a bit juicier and will probably turn your biscuits kind of blue-ish. 

Can I Freeze the Leftover Blueberry Lemon Curd Shortcakes?

You’re a party of one and six Blueberry Lemon Curd Shortcakes is a bit much, but you still REALLY want to make them (I don’t blame you!). Luckily, every part of this beautiful pile of goodness is freezer-friendly! The blueberry biscuits are good to drop into a freezer bag once they’re thoroughly cooled. Lemon curd (if you made your own) freezer superbly (I use a jar, leaving room at the top for expansion). And while I haven’t tried it, apparently you can freeze whipped cream!

Can I Substitute the Heavy Whipping Cream?

No. This recipe depends on the specific fat content of heavy whipping cream to create the correct texture in the biscuits and whipped cream.

Close up of a Blueberry Lemon Curd Shortcake on a plate being eaten with a black fork

Giiirrrrrlllll… 😍🤤😍

 

Blueberry Lemon Curd Shortcakes

Fresh blueberries, tangy lemon curd, creamy homemade whipped cream, and fluffy biscuits make these Blueberry Lemon Curd Shortcakes a totally epic dessert!

Blueberry Biscuits

  • 1.25 cups all-purpose flour ($0.13)
  • 1/2 tsp salt ($0.03)
  • 1 Tbsp sugar ($0.02)
  • 2 tsp baking powder ($0.08)
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream ($0.78)
  • 1 cup blueberries ($0.85)

Vanilla Whipped Cream

  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream ($0.78)
  • 2 Tbsp sugar ($0.04)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract ($0.28)

Toppings

  • 3/4 cup lemon curd ($0.78)
  • 1 cup blueberries ($0.85)
  1. Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Combine the dry ingredients for the blueberry biscuits in a bowl (flour, salt, sugar, and baking powder). Stir until very well combined. Stir 1 cup blueberries into the dry ingredients.

  2. Pour 1 cup heavy whipping cream into the bowl of dry ingredients and stir until it forms a ball of dough (avoid over stirring). It's okay for the dough to be slightly sticky, just make sure no dry flour remains on the bottom of the bowl.

  3. Using extra flour if necessary to keep your hands from sticking, divide the dough into six equal sized pieces. Shape one each into a ball and place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

  4. Bake the blueberry biscuits for 23-25 minutes, or until they are golden brown. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and allow the biscuits to cool.

  5. While the blueberry biscuits are baking, make the homemade vanilla whipped cream. Add the heavy whipping cream, vanilla, and sugar to a glass or metal bowl. Use a stand mixer or hand mixer to whip the cream until it forms stiff peaks. Refrigerate the whipped cream until you're ready to assemble the shortcakes.

  6. Once the biscuits are cool enough to handle, carefully slice them in half to create a top and bottom piece. Add a large dollop or two of vanilla whipped cream to each bottom piece, top with a couple tablespoons of lemon curd and a sprinkle of fresh blueberries, and then place the other half of the biscuit on top. Enjoy immediately.

Scroll down for the step by step photos!

Side view of a Blueberry Lemon Curd Shortcake on a plate, bowl of blueberries in the back.

Step by Step Photos

Dry ingredients for biscuits in a bowl

Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Combine the dry ingredients for the blueberry biscuits in a bowl: 1.25 cups all-purpose flour, 1/2 tsp salt, 1 Tbsp sugar, and 2 tsp baking powder. Make sure they’re very well combined because you don’t want to over stir once the wet ingredient is added.

blueberries added to the biscuit dry ingredients

Add 1 cup of blueberries to the biscuit dry ingredients. Stir to combine.

Heavy whipping cream being poured into the bowl of dry ingredients

Add 1 cup heavy whipping cream to the dry ingredients.

Blueberry biscuit dough finished in the bowl

Stir the ingredients together until it forms a ball of dough (avoid over stirring). It’s okay if the dough is slightly sticky, just make sure there is no dry flour left on the bottom of the bowl.

Blueberry biscuits ready to be baked on a parchment lined baking sheet.

Add flour if necessary to keep the dough from sticking to your hands as you divide the dough into six equal sized pieces and shape each into a ball. Place the shaped biscuits on a parchment lined baking sheet. (This is the Splatterware jelly roll pan made by Crow Canyon, purchased from Rove and Swig).

Baked blueberry biscuits on the baking sheet

Bake the biscuits for 23-25 minutes, or until they’re golden brown. Remove them from the oven and let them cool.

Homemade whipped cream being lifted on a spoon out of the metal bowl.

While the biscuits are baking, make the homemade vanilla whipped cream. Add 1 cup heavy whipping cream to a glass or metal bowl along with 2 Tbsp sugar and 1 tsp vanilla extract. Use a stand mixer or hand mixer to whip the cream until it forms stiff peaks (for reference about what a “stiff peak” is, check out this article). Refrigerate the whipped cream until you’re ready to assemble the shortcakes.

Blueberry lemon curd shortcakes being assembled, whipped cream being added to biscuit.

When the biscuits are cool enough to handle, carefully slice them in half so there is a top and bottom piece. Spoon a large dollop or two of whipped cream onto the bottom half of the biscuit.

lemon curd and fresh blueberries added to biscuit

Top the whipped cream with a tablespoon or two of lemon curd, and a sprinkle of fresh blueberries.

A Blueberry Lemon Curd Shortcake on a plate surrounded by the ingredients

Finally, place the other half of the biscuit on top and serve! And then take a photo of it and post it on social media because you deserve to brag about this one.

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Roasted Vegetable Salad Meal Prep https://www.budgetbytes.com/roasted-vegetable-salad-meal-prep/ https://www.budgetbytes.com/roasted-vegetable-salad-meal-prep/#comments Thu, 29 Aug 2019 22:05:29 +0000 https://www.budgetbytes.com/?p=45213 Making sure I get vegetables into my diet takes daily effort. But one thing I know for sure is that if I have them prepped, I am 1000x more likely to eat them. So this week I made these Roasted Vegetable Salad Meal Prep boxes to hopefully remove one more barrier between me and my […]

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Making sure I get vegetables into my diet takes daily effort. But one thing I know for sure is that if I have them prepped, I am 1000x more likely to eat them. So this week I made these Roasted Vegetable Salad Meal Prep boxes to hopefully remove one more barrier between me and my vegetables.😜

Four glass rectangle meal prep containers with Roasted Vegetable Salads and three small dressing containers

How to Eat Your Roasted Vegetable Salads

This salad is meant to be eaten cold, but you could certainly warm it if you prefer. Warming the salad will cause the spinach to wilt, so it will be more like a sautéed spinach in the dish, which would still be quite delish! You’ll still want to add the dressing after reheating.

Dressing Options

I used my Lemon Dill Tahini Dressing for this salad because I’m still obsessed with it, but I think there are some other suitable options if this one is not your favorite. A green goddess dressing would be amazing, as would a yogurt based Greek salad dressing. 

Vegetable Options

What I love about this meal prep is that you can always change up the vegetables to give it a new flavor. It’s still the tail end of summer, so I am using mostly summer vegetables here. Other great summer vegetable options are eggplant, asparagus, and bell peppers.

When we head into fall and winter I’ll probably start using harder winter vegetables, like sweet potato, cauliflower, broccoli, and carrots. Just keep in mind that the hard winter vegetables may take slightly longer to roast.

Other Topping Ideas

I’m all about keeping things simple, but if you have some of these items laying around waiting to be used up, here are some other ingredients that would make great toppings for this roasted vegetable salad: pita bread (cut into wedges), kalamata olives, sun dried tomatoes, feta cheese, or fresh parsley.

Dressing being poured onto a Roasted Vegetable Salad Meal Prep container

Where can I get those containers??

The glass containers are the 3-cup rectangular Pyrex containers and the dressing cups are 2.5 oz. metal dipping cups. Both were purchased from Amazon, and can be found in the “meal prep” category of my Amazon Shop

 

Roasted Vegetable Salad Meal Prep

These Roasted Vegetable Salad Meal Prep boxes are an easy, no-reheat, plan-ahead lunch option that will help you get your daily vegetables!

Lemon Dill Tahini Dressing

  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder ($0.02)
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder ($0.02)
  • 1/2 tsp dried dill ($0.05)
  • 1/2 tsp dried parsley ($0.05)
  • 1/4 tsp salt ($0.02)
  • Freshly cracked pepper ($0.03)
  • 1/4 cup tahini ($0.75)
  • 1/4 cup warm water ($0.00)
  • 3 Tbsp lemon juice ($0.09)

Quinoa

  • 1 cup quinoa ($1.20)
  • 1.75 cups water ($0.00)

Roasted Vegetables

  • 1 pint grape tomatoes ($1.99)
  • 8 oz. mushrooms ($1.69)
  • 1 zucchini ($0.95)
  • 1 yellow squash ($0.56)
  • 1 red onion ($0.44)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil ($0.32)
  • 1 tsp dried oregano ($0.10)
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder ($0.02)
  • 1/4 tsp salt ($0.02)

Other

  • 4 cups fresh spinach ($2.15)
  • 1/2 cup hummus ($1.15)
  1. Make the dressing first. In a small bowl combine the garlic powder, onion powder, dill, parsley, salt, pepper, tahini, water, and lemon juice. Stir or whisk until smooth. Refrigerate the dressing as you prepare the rest of the salad.

  2. Begin cooking the quinoa. Rinse the quinoa well in a fine wire mesh sieve. Place the rinsed quinoa in a small sauce pot and add 1.75 cups water. Place a lid on top, turn the heat on to high, and bring it up to a boil. Once it reaches a boil, turn the heat down to low and let it simmer for 15 minutes.

  3. After letting the quinoa simmer for 15 minutes, turn the heat off and let it rest with the lid in place for five minutes. Empty the cooked quinoa out into a casserole dish, spreading it out to increase the surface area. Refrigerate the dish with the quinoa until you're ready to assemble the meal preps.

  4. Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Place the grape tomatoes onto a large baking sheet. Slice the onion into 1/4-inch strips. Cut the zucchini and yellow squash into 1/4-inch wide half-rounds. Cut the mushrooms in half. Mix the vegetables together on the baking sheet. If there are too many to fit in a single layer on the baking sheet, divide them between two baking sheets.

  5. Add the olive oil, oregano, garlic powder, and salt to the vegetables. Use your hands to mix the vegetables and seasoning, until the vegetables are well coated in oil.

  6. Roast the vegetables in the preheated 400ºF oven, stirring every 15 minutes, until the vegetables are browned on the edges. Allow the vegetables to cool for about 10 minutes at room temperature.

  7. To build the meal prep bowls, place one heaping cup of spinach in each dish. Add 1/2 cup of the cooked and cooled quinoa on top of the spinach. Divide the roasted vegetables between the four containers, then add 2 Tbsp hummus to each dish.

  8. Divide the dressing between four small dressing containers. Refrigerate the salads and dressing for up to 4 days.

Scroll down for the step by step photos!

Four glass containers with Roasted Vegetable Salad and three dressing containers

Step by Step Photos

Lemon Dill Tahini Dressing dripping off a spoon into a white bowl.

Make the Lemon Dill Tahini Dressing first. In a small bowl, combine 1/4 tsp garlic powder, 1/4 tsp onion powder, 1/2 tsp dried dill, 1/2 tsp dried parsley, 1/4 tsp salt, some freshly cracked pepper, 1/4 cup tahini, 1/4 cup warm water, and 3 Tbsp lemon juice. Stir or whisk until smooth. Refrigerate the dressing until you’re ready to make your salads.

Cooked Quinoa in the pot

Next, begin the quinoa. Rinse 1 cup quinoa well in a fine wire mesh sieve. Place the rinsed quinoa in a small sauce pot, add 1.75 cups water, and place a lid on top. Place the pot over high heat and allow it to come to a boil. Once boiling, turn the heat down to low and let it simmer for 15 minutes.

Spread out quinoa in a dish to cool

After 15 minutes, turn the heat off and let the quinoa rest, with the lid in place, for 5 minutes. Then empty out the quinoa into a shallow dish and spread it out to increase the surface area, so it will cool faster. Refrigerate the quinoa until you’re ready to build your salads.

Whole vegetables for Roasted Vegetable Salad Meal Prep

Begin preheating the oven to 400ºF. You can use any mix of vegetables for this meal prep (see notes above the recipe for more ideas). I used 8 oz. mushrooms, 1 pint grape tomatoes, 1 red onion, 1 zucchini, and 1 yellow squash.

Chopped vegetables ready to roast on a sheet pan.

Slice the onion into 1/4-inch strips, slice the zucchini and yellow squash into 1/4-inch half-rounds, and cut the mushrooms in half. Leave the tomatoes whole. Combine the vegetables and spread them out onto a large baking sheet so they are in a single layer. Use two sheets if needed to make sure they’re not piled on top of one another. Add 2 Tbsp olive oil, 1 tsp dried oregano, 1/4 tsp garlic powder, and 1/4 tsp salt. Toss until the vegetables are well coated in oil and spices.

Roasted vegetables on the sheet pan

Roast the vegetables, stirring every 15 minutes, until they are browned on the edges (about 40 minutes). Let the vegetables cool on the sheet pan for about 10 minutes.

Add spinach and quinoa to meal prep containers

To build the meal prep salads, add a heaping cup of spinach to each container. Then add 1/2 cup cooked and cooled quinoa to each container.

roasted vegetables and hummus added to containers

Once the vegetables are cool enough that they won’t wilt the spinach, divide the roasted vegetables between the four containers. Add 2 Tbsp hummus to each container.

Divide dressing into containers

Lastly, divide your dressing into four small containers. Refrigerate your roasted vegetable salad up to four days.

Glass meal prep containers with Roasted Vegetable Salad in a row.

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19 Refrigerator Salads for Eating Healthy On The GO! https://www.budgetbytes.com/refrigerator-salads-for-eating-healthy/ https://www.budgetbytes.com/refrigerator-salads-for-eating-healthy/#comments Sat, 24 Aug 2019 17:28:36 +0000 https://www.budgetbytes.com/?p=45159 I talk about “refrigerator salads” a lot because they’re my favorite way to make sure I’m eating healthy even when I’m like, SUPER busy. I know I’ve turned a lot of you into refrigerator salad fans too, so I thought I’d round up my favorite refrigerator salads in one place to make them easy to […]

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I talk about “refrigerator salads” a lot because they’re my favorite way to make sure I’m eating healthy even when I’m like, SUPER busy. I know I’ve turned a lot of you into refrigerator salad fans too, so I thought I’d round up my favorite refrigerator salads in one place to make them easy to find! Scroll on down to read more about what a refrigerator salad is, why I love them, and see what made the list!

Collage of six salads with title text in a box in the center.

What is a “Refrigerator Salad”

Simply put, a refrigerator salad is a salad that holds up well to refrigeration. It’s a salad that I make on Sunday and I can keep in my refrigerator for quick meals throughout the week (and by “throughout the week” I mean for the next four days or so). I try to keep one refrigerator salad prepared and waiting every week and it really helps me meet my daily vegetable goals (because honestly, if I didn’t have a salad ready to go in the fridge I’d probably just melt some cheese in a tortilla for dinner).

The Versatility of Refrigerator Salads

Another reason I love refrigerator salads is because they can be quite versatile. Many of them can be as a side dish with dinner, usd as a bed for some grilled chicken or a boiled egg for lunch, or stuffed into a wrap or pita and make a sandwich! So you can change it up throughout the week and prevent boredom.

How Long Do Refrigerator Salads Last?

The lifespan of each salad will vary and you can find more details on the best way to store each salad by clicking through to their blog post, but to make it into this “refrigerator salad” category, I picked salads that hold up well for at least three days of refrigeration. As with most prepared foods, I don’t suggest refrigerating longer than 5 days. The environment of your particular refrigerator and ingredient freshness can impact their longevity.

19 Refrigerator Salads for Eating Healthy on the Go!

*Vegan salads marked with an asterisk.

Overhead view of Lemony Artichoke and Quinoa Salad in a bowl with lemon wedges and a fork.

Lemony Artichoke and Quinoa Salad

This Lemony Artichoke and Quinoa Salad is a light and refreshing summer salad that holds up well in the refrigerator and is perfect for meal prep!
Go to the recipe >>>

Lemony Artichoke and Quinoa Salad* – This one is kind of like a cold version of my Spanish Chickpeas and Rice. Lemony, artichokey goodness with plenty of plant based protein to make it meal-worthy.

Front view of a bowl of Honey Mustard Broccoli Salad with a black fork and spoon in the side of the bowl.

Honey Mustard Broccoli Salad

This crunchy, sweet, tangy, and creamy Honey Mustard Broccoli Salad only takes minutes to makes the perfect summer side dish.
Go to the recipe >>>

Honey Mustard Broccoli Salad – This salad is my new current obsession! The tangy, creamy, sweet Honey Mustard Sauce is the perfect pair for the crunchy bitter green flavor of fresh broccoli. You’ll be hitting those daily vegetable goals EASILY with this salad.

Parmesan Balsamic Vinaigrette being poured onto a bowl of Tomato Mozzarella Salad from a jar.

Tomato Mozzarella Pasta Salad

This Tomato Mozzarella Pasta Salad with homemade Parmesan Balsamic Vinaigrette is the perfect light and fresh summer meal. Perfect for potlucks!
Go to the recipe >>>

Tomato Mozzarella Pasta Salad – That dressing, tho… 🤤 This indulgent salad is kind of like a Caprese salad meets pasta salad. I like to add slices of grilled chicken to this one for a totally restaurant-worthy meal, but for a lot less $$$. Keep this one refrigerated sans dressing for optimal longevity if your fridge! 

Peanut Lime Dressing being poured onto a bowl of Cold Peanut Noodle Salad

Cold Peanut Noodle Salad

This Cold Peanut Noodle Salad with homemade peanut lime dressing is the perfect meal prep for summer! No reheating necessary.
Go to the recipe >>>

Cold Peanut Noodle Salad* – Eat the rainbow! This colorful salad tastes as festive as it looks. Super crunchy, full flavored goodness that is just as delish on day four as it was on day one! It’s super filling on its own, but would also be awesome with fried tofu cubes or shredded chicken.

Cucumber and Black Bean Salad in a bowl with a black spoon

Cucumber and Black Bean Salad

This light and fresh cucumber and black bean salad is the perfect summer side dish. It is refrigerator stable so make it once and snack on it all week!
Go to the recipe >>>

Cucumber and Black Bean Salad – Hello, SUMMER. I pretty much serve this as a side dish to everything during the summer months. The fresh cucumber and salty feta give this hearty black bean salad a 1-2 flavor punch. So simple, but SO good.

This Parsley Salad with Almonds and Apricots is savory, sweet, crunchy, and drenched in a tangy homemade vinaigrette! Holds up well to refrigeration and perfect for meal prep! Budgetbytes.com

Parsley Salad with Almonds and Apricots

This Parsley Salad with Almonds and Apricots is savory, sweet, crunchy, and drenched in a tangy homemade vinaigrette! Holds up well to refrigeration and perfect for meal prep! 
Go to the recipe >>>

Parsley Salad with Almonds and Apricots* – This salad is so underrated. The bulgur (cracked wheat) makes this salad super hearty, while the fresh parsley keeps everything light and fresh. Crunchy almonds, sweet dried apricots, and a homemade vinaigrette give the salad plenty of flavor and texture. I love this salad throughout the fall and winter months because it doesn’t rely on a lot of fresh summery vegetables, like most salads.

Roasted Vegetable Couscous is an easy side dish with complex flavor, with sweet roasted vegetables mixed with savory, fluffy couscous. Budgetbytes.com

Roasted Vegetable Couscous

Roasted Vegetable Couscous is an easy side dish with complex flavor, with sweet roasted vegetables mixed with savory, fluffy couscous.
Go to the recipe >>>

Roasted Vegetable Couscous* – When summer vegetables are at their peak, this salad is a staple! It makes a great side dish, a tasty bed for grilled meat, or a flavorful filling for wrap sandwiches!

Cowboy Caviar is like a cross between a bean salad and fresh salsa with its colorful mix of beans, vegetables, and a fresh lime infused dressing. BudgetBytes.com

Cowboy Caviar

Cowboy Caviar is like a cross between a bean salad and fresh salsa with its colorful mix of beans, vegetables, and a fresh lime infused dressing.
Go to the recipe >>>

Cowboy Caviar* – This potluck classic is one that I love to make year round. It has more color, texture, and flavor than any sald I’ve made, and is so good that I like to just scoop it up with chips. I love offering this salad as a “healthy” chip dip option at parties. Even if it’s a party of one. Me. I’m the party. 

A bowl of Roasted Cauliflower and Quinoa Salad on a teal napkin.

Roasted Cauliflower and Quinoa Salad

This Roasted Cauliflower and Quinoa Salad holds up well in the refrigerator for days, making it perfect for meal prep or brown bagging your lunch. 
Go to the recipe >>>

Roasted Cauliflower and Quinoa Salad* – This totally killer salad has the amazing super power of being freezer friendly! Yes, you can FREEZE this salad! It may be the first of its kind. So keep a few portions of this on hand in your freezer for “emergencies.” 

When fresh vegetables are in short supply, make this Sweet Crunch Winter Salad packed full of winter vegetables and a homemade Maple Tahini Dressing. BudgetBytes.com

Sweet Crunch Winter Salad

When fresh vegetables are in short supply, make this Sweet Crunch Winter Salad packed full of winter vegetables and a homemade Maple Tahini Dressing. 
Go to the recipe >>>

Sweet Crunch Winter Salad* – Another great winter refrigerator salad option! When the fresh, juicy, summer vegetables are long gone you can make delish salads using the hearty vegetables of fall and winter, like cabbage, carrots, and broccoli. 

A quick homemade balsamic vinaigrette makes this simple Spinach and Orzo Salad extra special. Serve as a light lunch or a side with dinner. BudgetBytes.com

Spinach and Orzo Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette

A quick homemade balsamic vinaigrette makes this simple Spinach and Orzo Salad extra special. Serve as a light lunch or a side with dinner.
Go to the recipe >>>

Spinach and Orzo Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette – Talk about tangy goodness! Between the sun dried tomatoes, homemade balsamic vinaigrette, and feta, this salad is a tangy food lover’s dream. And if you don’t have orzo, you can always sub for another small pasta variety, like couscous or even bowtie! 

Super Fresh Salad is a cold, crunchy, juicy mix of flavorful vegetables topped with a simple red wine and oregano vinaigrette. BudgetBytes.com

Super Fresh Cucumber Salad

Super Fresh Cucumber Salad is a cold, crunchy, juicy mix of flavorful vegetables topped with a simple red wine and oregano vinaigrette.
Go to the recipe >>>

Super Fresh Cucumber Salad – You may have seen me wax poetic about this salad on social media. It’s such a classic summer staple. The aroma of the fresh cucumber and tomato is so intoxicating to me and it fills my entire refrigerator with its “super fresh” aroma, that I want to just stand with the refrigerator door open and sniff. But then I remember that I get to eat it, too. WIN. 

This Roasted Cauliflower Salad combines sweet roasted red onions, spiced chickpeas, tender cauliflower, and a tangy lemon tahini dressing. BudgetBytes.com

Roasted Cauliflower Salad with Lemon Tahini Dressing

This Roasted Cauliflower Salad combines sweet roasted red onions, spiced chickpeas, tender cauliflower, and a tangy lemon tahini dressing.
Go to the recipe >>>

Roasted Cauliflower Salad with Lemon Tahini Dressing* – This is one of my most VIRAL recipes, and for good reason. It’s just freaking delicious! Thankfully it holds up well in the fridge, and it’s another great option for the winter months. :)

Fresh and vibrantly flavored, this Quinoa Tabbouleh has all the familiar flavors of traditional tabbouleh, but with easy to cook and nutrient rich quinoa instead of bulgur. Budgetbytes.com

Quinoa Tabbouleh

Fresh and vibrantly flavored, this Quinoa Tabbouleh has all the familiar flavors of traditional tabbouleh, but with easy to cook and nutrient rich quinoa instead of bulgur.
Go to the recipe >>>

Quinoa Tabbouleh* – If you’re a lemon and garlic lover, this one is for you. The homemade dressing drenches everything in super tangy lemon garlic flavor, while the cucumbers and tomatoes help keep things light. I could eat my weight in tabbouleh!

This super simple three-ingredient cabbage salad is huge on flavor and is the perfect side for all of your summer grilling. This Vinaigrette slaw with Feta will become your easy go-to side dish. BudgetBytes.com

Vinaigrette Slaw with Feta

This super simple three-ingredient cabbage salad is huge on flavor and is the perfect side for all of your summer grilling. This Vinaigrette slaw with Feta will become your easy go-to side dish.
Go to the recipe >>>

Vinaigrette Slaw with Feta – This salad is perhaps my favorite way to eat cabbage. Anytime I have leftover cabbage from another recipe, I make a batch of this Vinaigrette Slaw with Feta because it’s such a tasty snack, or side to go with my dinner. And it’s just so SIMPLE. 

Marinated Lentil Salad

Marinated Lentil Salad is bright and flavorful, and infused with bold flavors like garlic and lemon. 
Go to the recipe >>>

Marinated Lentil Salad – Most people only think of eating lentils hot, but they make a great (inexpensive) base for a salad when chilled! You can even add some fresh spinach if you want to up the greens in this salad.

Greek Chicken Pasta Salad

Greek Chicken Pasta Salad is the perfectly refreshing and filling summer meal with its medley of vegetables and tangy lemon garlic dressing.
Go to the recipe >>>

Greek Chicken Pasta Salad – Another reader fav! I love this salad as a light lunch, especially during the hot months of summer. It’s filling, fresh, and has everything you need in one bowl. You can swap chickpeas for the chicken to make it vegetarian!

Lemony Cucumber Couscous Salad

Lemony Cucumber Couscous Salad is a light, fresh, and vibrant pasta salad perfect for any summer meal. 
Go to the recipe >>>

Lemony Cucumber Couscous Salad – As soon as those summer cucumbers hit the market, this is the FIRST salad I make! It’s so fresh and delightful, with those cute little couscous pearls, I can never get enough. 

This Apple Dijon Kale Salad is tangy, sweet, and crunchy with Granny Smith apples, walnuts, raisins, and a homemade Dijon vinaigrette. BudgetBytes.com

Apple Dijon Kale Salad

This Apple Dijon Kale Salad is tangy, sweet, and crunchy with Granny Smith apples, walnuts, raisins, and a homemade Dijon vinaigrette.
Go to the recipe >>>

Apple Dijon Kale Salad* – I know I’ve said every one of these is my favorite, but this one really holds a special place in my heart. Those tart apples, crunchy walnuts, sweet raisins, earthy kale, and tangy homemade vinaigrette come together for one of the tastiest salads EVER. The perfect salad for fall!

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Chicken and Lime Soup https://www.budgetbytes.com/chicken-lime-soup/ https://www.budgetbytes.com/chicken-lime-soup/#comments Thu, 22 Aug 2019 17:42:00 +0000 http://www.budgetbytes.com/2012/10/14/chicken-lime-soup-6-39-recipe-1-07-serving/ I’m a soup-all-year-long type of person. Soup is tasty. Soup is filling. Soup freezes well. And this Chicken and Lime Soup is where it’s at. The clear broth is light enough for summer, and has a deliciously spicy, sour, and salty broth that will keep you coming back for more, and more, and MORE. If […]

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I’m a soup-all-year-long type of person. Soup is tasty. Soup is filling. Soup freezes well. And this Chicken and Lime Soup is where it’s at. The clear broth is light enough for summer, and has a deliciously spicy, sour, and salty broth that will keep you coming back for more, and more, and MORE. If you want to change up your chicken soup game, this Chicken and Lime Soup is the way to go!

Originally posted 10-14-2012, updated 8-22-2019

Close up overhead view of a bowl of Chicken and Lime Soup with avocado slices, lime wedges, and tortilla chips.

This Chicken and Lime Soup was inspired by a trip to a Mexican restaurant where I had the most amazing tangy Caldo Xochitl. I added more lime because I’m a lime fiend, and it gave the soup the perfect mix between spicy, salty, and sour – that same famous combo that makes Chinese hot & sour soup so delish. There’s just something about that flavor combination that tickles all the right parts of your tongue!

Make Your Chicken and Lime Soup Mild

The recipe as written is fairly spicy. The heat comes from the jalapeño pepper and the diced tomatoes with green chiles. If you’d like to make your Chicken and Lime Soup mild, simply skip the jalapeño pepper and use a 15 oz. can of regular diced tomatoes, or fire roasted diced tomatoes, in place of the tomatoes with green chiles.

Diced Tomatoes with Green Chiles Substitutes

If canned diced tomatoes with green chiles are not sold in your area, you can use a 15 oz. can of petite diced tomatoes plus one 4 oz. can of diced green chiles. Or, leave the green chiles out and use a can of fire roasted diced tomatoes. You can also dice up a fresh hatch green chile and sauté that with the onion, celery, and garlic in the beginning of the recipe.

Close up of a spoonful of Chicken and Lime Soup with the bowl in the background.

Use More Chicken if Desired

Using only a small amount of meat in my recipes is kind of my calling card, so that’s what I did here. One chicken breast, shredded so you get a little bit in every spoonful, is all I needed. If you prefer more meat in your dishes, you can use two chicken breasts in this recipe without having to make any other adjustments.

Topping Your Chicken and Lime Soup

For me, topping soup with lots of stuff is half the fun, and you have a lot of topping options with this one. I wrote avocado into the recipe because I really feel like that topping is critical and really makes the soup flavors well rounded, but the rest are totally optional. When I have tortilla chips on hand, I like to use those like I would crackers in other soup, crushing them up so they can soak up that awesome broth. A little dab of sour cream would be awesome, as would a few pickled red onions.

A hand squeezing a wedge of lime into a bowl of Chicken and Lime Soup

 

Chicken and Lime Soup

This Chicken and Lime Soup is light, fresh, and flavorful with shredded chicken, vegetables, fresh cilantro, and a tangy lime infused broth.

  • 1 yellow onion ($0.21)
  • 3 ribs celery (about 1/4 bunch) ($0.37)
  • 1 jalapenño ($0.17)
  • 4 cloves garlic ($0.32)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil ($0.32)
  • 1 boneless, skinless chicken breast (about 3/4 lb.) ($2.32)
  • 6 cups chicken broth* ($0.78)
  • 2 10oz. cans diced tomatoes with green chiles (Rotel) ($0.90)
  • 1 tsp oregano ($0.10)
  • 1/2 Tbsp cumin ($0.15)
  • 1 lime ($0.22)
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro ($0.40)
  • 1 avocado ($1.50)
  1. Dice the onion, celery, and jalapeño (scrape the seeds out of the jalapeño before dicing). Mince the garlic. Add the onion, celery, jalapeño, garlic, and olive oil to a large soup pot and cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes, or until the onions are soft and translucent.

  2. Add the chicken breast, chicken broth, diced tomatoes with chiles (with juices), oregano, and cumin to the pot. Place a lid on the pot, turn the heat up to high, and bring the broth up to a boil. Once boiling, turn the heat down to low and let the pot simmer for 45 minutes.

  3. After simmering for 45 minutes, carefully remove the chicken breast from the pot and use two forks to shred the meat. Return the shredded meat to the pot. Squeeze the juice of one lime into the soup (2-3 Tbsp juice).

  4. Rinse the cilantro and then roughly chop the leaves. Add the chopped cilantro to the soup, give it a quick stir, then serve. Slice the avocado and add a few slices to each bowl.

*I use Better Than Bouillon chicken soup base to make my broth because it is less expensive than buying canned or boxed broths.

Scroll down for the step by step photos!

Close up of a bowl of Chicken and Lime Soup with garnishes and a black spoon in the middle

 

Step By Step Photos

Celery, onion, jalapeño and garlic on a cutting board
Dice one yellow onion, three ribs of celery, and one jalapeño. Mince four cloves of garlic.

Remove ribs and seeds from jalapeño

Before dicing the jalapeño, slice it in half lengthwise and use a spoon to scrape out the white ribs and seeds. These are the hottest parts of the jalapeño, so removing them first will give you a little more jalapeño flavor and a little less heat.

Onion, celery, jalapeño, and garlic in soup pot with olive oil

Add the celery, onion, jalapeño, and garlic to a large soup pot with 2 Tbsp olive oil. Sauté over medium heat for about 5 minutes, or until the onions are soft and translucent.

Chicken broth being poured into the soup pot over a chicken breast.
Add one boneless, skinless chicken breast to the pot (about 3/4 lb.). Then add 6 cups chicken broth (I use Better Than Bouillon so I can mix up any amount needed at any time). 

A can of diced tomatoes with green chiles
Next, add two 10 oz. cans of diced tomatoes with green chiles. If you can only find 15 oz cans, you can use one. Or, if you can not find canned diced tomatoes with green chiles, you can either use diced tomatoes and one 4 oz. can of green chiles, or just use fire roasted diced tomatoes.

Add cumin and oregano to the soup pot.
In addition to the diced tomatoes with green chiles, also add 1/2 Tbsp cumin and 1 tsp dried oregano.

Simmered chicken and lime soup

Place a lid on the pot, turn the heat up to high, and allow it to come up to a boil. Once boiling, turn the heat down to low and let the soup simmer for 45 minutes (lid on).

Shred chicken on a cutting board with two knives.
After simmering for 45 minutes, the chicken should be tender enough to shred. Carefully remove it from the pot to a clean cutting board, then use two forks to shred the meat into small pieces. Return the shredded meat to the soup pot.

Squeezing half lime into the soup.

Squeeze the juice from one lime (about 2-3 Tbsp) into the broth. To get the most juice out of the lime, I like to cut it in half, squeeze as much by hand, then insert a spoon into the lime and twist to squeeze out the rest.

Stir fresh cilantro into the soup
Rinse the cilantro to make sure there’s no sand hiding in there, then give it a rough chop. You don’t have to take the time to carefully remove all stems. Cilantro stems are tender enough to enjoy. Stir the cilantro into the soup.

Finished bowl of Chicken and Lime Soup with sliced avocado and a couple of lime wedges

Slice the avocado and add a few slices to each bowl just before serving! Enjoy!

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Crispy Potatoes with Lemon Dill Tahini Dressing https://www.budgetbytes.com/crispy-potatoes-with-lemon-dill-tahini-dressing/ https://www.budgetbytes.com/crispy-potatoes-with-lemon-dill-tahini-dressing/#comments Tue, 20 Aug 2019 16:25:03 +0000 https://www.budgetbytes.com/?p=45142 Ever since I made that Lemon Dill Tahini Dressing a couple weeks ago I’ve been using everything and anything as a vehicle to get it in my mouth. 😅 One of my favorite vehicles, by far, are potatoes. So this week I made these Crispy Potatoes with Lemon Dill Tahini Dressing as sort of a […]

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Ever since I made that Lemon Dill Tahini Dressing a couple weeks ago I’ve been using everything and anything as a vehicle to get it in my mouth. 😅 One of my favorite vehicles, by far, are potatoes. So this week I made these Crispy Potatoes with Lemon Dill Tahini Dressing as sort of a deconstructed potato salad. Just drizzle the dressing on top, sprinkle a few green onions in there, and DEVOUR.

Overhead view of a cast iron skillet containing crispy potatoes with lemon dill tahini dressing, a bowl of dressing and bowl of green onion on the side

What to Serve with Crispy Potatoes with Lemon Dill Tahini Dressing

So, I totally just ate them right out of the skillet, but I know some (read: most) of you will want to know what kind of meal to pair this with, so here are a few suggestions. I think these Crispy Potatoes with Lemon Dill Tahini Dressing would be an awesome side to some Grilled Portobello Mushroom Burgers, Sun Dried Tomato, White Bean, and Kale Skillet, or Vegetarian French Dip Sandwiches. If you’re a meat eater, these potatoes would make a great side to just about any grilled or roasted meat. 

How to Store Crispy Potatoes with Lemon Dill Tahini Dressing

These potatoes are undoubtably the best right after cooking, when they’re crispy. You’ll want to drizzle the dressing on just before eating because if left on too long the dressing will tend to soak into the potatoes. So, if you plan on storing some of these to eat as leftovers I suggest keeping the three components separate (potatoes, dressing, green onion). Reheat the potatoes in a skillet to crisp them up again, then add the dressing and green onions just before eating.

Do I have to use baby gold potatoes?

Nope! I just happen to be in love with these tasty little potato-lettes, so I was okay with paying the premium price for them. But if this type of potato doesn’t fit your budget you can use regular sized Yukon Gold Potatoes or red skinned potatoes. I like the Yukon Gold or red potatoes because they have a creamier texture than the slightly more grainy texture of russet. If using larger potatoes, simply dice them into large cubes before boiling.

Close side view of a skillet full of potatoes topped with tahini dressing and green onion

 

Crispy Potatoes with Lemon Dill Tahini Dressing

These Crispy Potatoes with Lemon Dill Tahini Dressing are like a deconstructed vegan potato salad, with a creamy homemade dressing.

Crispy Potatoes

  • 1.5 lbs. baby potatoes* ($3.29)
  • 1/4 tsp salt ($0.02)
  • 2 Tbsp cooking oil ($0.08)

Lemon Dill Tahini Dressing

  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder ($0.02)
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder ($0.02)
  • 1/2 tsp dried dill ($0.05)
  • 1/2 tsp dried parsley ($0.05)
  • 1/4 tsp salt ($0.02)
  • freshly cracked pepper ($0.03)
  • 1/4 cup tahini ($0.75)
  • 1/4 cup water ($0.00)
  • 3 Tbsp lemon juice ($0.09)
  • 2 green onions ($0.09)
  1. Place the potatoes in a pot and add 1/4 tsp salt and enough water to cover the potatoes by one inch. Place a lid on the pot, turn the heat on to high, and allow the water to come to a boil. Boil the potatoes for 8-10 minutes, or until they are fork tender.

  2. While the potatoes are boiling, prepare the Lemon Dill Tahini Dressing. Add the garlic powder, onion powder, dried dill, dried parsley, salt, some freshly cracked pepper (about 10 cranks of a pepper mill), tahini, water, and lemon juice to a bowl. Stir or whisk until smooth. If the dressing is too runny, place it in the refrigerator and it will thicken as it chills.

  3. Drain the potatoes and let them cool for 5 minutes, or until they are cool enough to handle. Once slightly cooled, slice the potatoes in half.

  4. Add 2 Tbsp cooking oil to a non-stick skillet (I prefer cast iron for this recipe). Heat the oil over medium-high. Once hot, add the potatoes. Let the potatoes cook, stirring only occasionally, until they are browned and crispy on the outside (about 10 minutes total).

  5. While the potatoes are frying in the skillet, slice the green onions.

  6. Remove the skillet from the heat and either transfer the potatoes to a serving dish or use the skillet as the serving dish. Drizzle a generous amount of the lemon dill tahini dressing over top, then add the green onions. Serve immediately.

*see the notes above the recipe for instructions on using other types of potatoes.

Scroll down for the step by step photos!

Half eaten skillet of crispy potatoes with lemon dill tahini dressing and green onions

Step by Step Photos

Add potatoes, salt, and water to the pot

Add 1.5 lbs. baby potatoes, 1/4 tsp salt, and enough water to cover the potatoes by one inch to a pot. Place a lid on the pot, then turn the heat on to high, and allow the water to come up to a boil. Boil the potatoes until they are fork tender, about 8-10 minutes.

Lemon Dill Tahini Dressing dripping off a spoon into a white bowl.

While the potatoes are boiling, make the lemon dill tahini dressing. Add 1/4 tsp garlic powder, 1/4 tsp onion powder, 1/2 tsp dried dill, 1/2 tsp dried parsley, 1/4 tsp salt, some freshly cracked pepper (about 10 cranks of a pepper mill), 1/4 cup tahini, 1/4 cup water, and 3 Tbsp lemon juice to a bowl. Whisk or stir until it is smooth. If your dressing is super runny, just pop it in the refrigerator and it will thicken up as it cools.

Boiled Potatoes sliced in half.

Once the potatoes are tender, drain them in a colander and let them cool for a few minutes, or just until they are cool enough to handle. Once slightly cooled, slice them in half.

Crispy fried potatoes in a cast iron skillet

Add 2 Tbsp cooking oil to a non-stick skillet. I prefer cast iron for this one, and I’m using the 10″ Lodge cast iron skillet. Heat the skillet over medium-high. Once hot, add the potatoes and cook them until brown and crispy, about 10 minutes, stirring only occasionally. Remove the skillet from the heat.

Sliced green onions on a cutting board

While the potatoes are frying, slice two green onions.

tahini dressing being drizzled over potatoes, close up

Transfer the potatoes to a serving dish, or leave them in the skillet if you want to use that as your serving dish. Drizzle a liberal amount of lemon dill tahini dressing over the potatoes.

Finished crispy potatoes with lemon dill tahini dressing and sliced green onions

Finally, top with the sliced green onions and serve immediately. YUM.

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