3 Days of Meals All Spelled Out

Posted on October 15th, 2012 by Discount Debbie

A very dear friend of mine really has a hard time cooking. By hard time, I mean the poor girl just doesn’t. So she desperately emailed me asking to put together a plan for her. Not just a meal plan, but something she can have an rotate through the weeks.

Having a meal plan whether short or small is a great idea.Every meal you cook at home saves you money. So if you are like my dear friend who doesn’t cook, check out this first set of meals she will start rotating. I am going to give her more, but this is a start.

She wanted me to spell everything out for her even down to what she needs at the store.

I’m eventually going to put these together into a PDF that you will be able to download and print out for your own use. These are all my tried and true recipes that I think should be apart of every families rotation.

Meal 1-Easy baked chicken

What you need
4 chicken breasts
1 cup Mayo
½ cup Fresh Parmesan cheese
1tsp garlic powder
1 tsp season salt
½ tsp pepper

Place each breast on a cutting board and place wax paper over it and with a food powder, pound it out flat. Don’t use the pointy side.
Cut the flat pieces in half and place in a greased pan. Like a brownie pan.
Do that to all chicken.
Mix together all those other ingredients and then spread it over the chicken evenly.
Bake at 375 for 45 minutes.

What you’ll need at the store
Chicken breasts
Parmesan cheese
and the seasonings you may not have

Meal 2-Pizza Casserole
Really easy and kids LOVE it.

What you need
1 bag of Egg Noodles
1 extra large can of spaghetti sauce
3 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1 1/2 lbs hamburger meat
1 package pepperonis

What to do
Brown the meat, & drain
And boil noodles until soft. Drain.
Preheat the oven @ 350
Spread a thin layer of tomato sauce on the bottom
Second layer, half of the noodles

half of the meat
half of the sauce
rest of the noodles
half the cheese
rest of the meat
rest of the sauce
rest of the cheese

Now cover with foil, and bake for 30 minutes
After 30 minutes, remove the foil & bake for another 15 minute.

What you need at the store
1 bag of Egg Noodles
1 extra large can of spaghetti sauce
3 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1 1/2 lbs hamburger meat
1 package pepperoni

Meal 3-Red Beans and Rice

What you need
1bag of red beans-washed and make sure there are no rocks in it
1 large onion
1 bell pepper
2 packages smoked sausage cut into slices
Seasonings-Paprika, season salt, fresh minced garlic, pepper, caynne pepper

What to do
Pour beans into crock pot and cover beans so there is about 3-4 inches of water above them.
Chop onion and put it in.
Chop bell pepper and put it in.
Cut up sausage and put it in
Do 2 tbls parika, 1 tbl season salt, 3 tablespoons of fresh minced garlic, ½ teaspoon pepper and ¼ tsp cayenne pepper. Maybe a dash or two of chili powder if you have it.

Let cook on low for 8-9 hours. Stirring occasionally.
Serve over rice.

What you need at the store
Bag of red beans
Bag of onions
1 Bell pepper
any seasonings you didn’t have
2 smoked sausages


Meal Plan Monday….I mean Tuesday

Posted on August 14th, 2012 by Discount Debbie

Life happens! One minute you are ready to tackle the day, plan your meals for the week and the next minute your sitting in a doctor’s office with your daughter who developed a crazy looking rash. A crazy Monday it was, but today is a new day and my family wants food tonight!

If you’ve ever had the Monday I did, you understand, but our families must still eat, and I still must plan it out so we can save some money! Here’s what’s on the agenda for the rest of the week.

Macaroni and cheese with hot dogs-Hey, don’t knock it before you try it. It’s a family favorite and I try to make it as healthy as possible by using healthier hot dogs and making the macaroni and cheese from scratch. THIS is an amazing recipe and I usually have these ingredients in my house.

I also like to serve this with steamed broccoli. Maybe it’s the cheese in the mac and cheese that makes it sound so good!

Shrimp Casserole with green beans.
This is a HUGE family favorite and it’s super easy to make. Shrimp is kind of expensive too, but it’s a nice treat if you find it frozen and on sale. HERE is the recipe I use.

Pizza Casserole with green salad.
If you haven’t noticed casseroles are big around here. They are easy. They are quick and they make amazing leftovers and save me time and money for lunch the next day. THIS recipe is crazy easy and the kids LOVE it!

Crockpot beef stroganoff with leftover salad.
I have listed this on my meal plans several times and if you still haven’t made it, try it! Your family really will love it. Also since I made salad on Thursday, I’ll have leftovers which will make one less thing to cook Friday night! I always have tons of leftovers from this recipe as well and it freezes so great!

It’s grilling night! Fortunately the husband does most of the cooking if I get it ready. So this weekend it’s the very typical steaks marinated with italian dressing with baked potatoes and grilled veggies. The real treat will be our grilled dessert! Did you know you can make dessert on the grill!? My favorite is grilled pound cake with berries. It’s the perfect time of year for it too. Check out THIS recipe that I use.

And this mommy rested…


Homemade Kale Chips!

Posted on July 18th, 2012 by Discount Debbie

Have you ever made this little jewels? They are amazing!

I know what you are thinking though, this is Thrifty Divas, not Recipe Divas, but have you ever bought these in a store? They can be quite pricey! My local health food store had them for $8 a bag! I don’t feel right about spending that much when I can make it at home so easy! Plus, this week kale was in my Bountiful Basket. Don’t know what a Bountiful Basket is? Check out our post HERE.  A basket full of fresh fruits and veggies is only $15, so my kale was about $1 for a whole bunch, if that much.

To make your own kale chips you need…

Kosher or Sea Salt
Olive Oil

What To do…

1. Preheat your oven to 300 degrees.
2. Pull apart your kale leaves from the stem.
3. Wash and dry thoroughly.

4. Toss with 2 tablespoons of olive oil.

5. Lay flat on a cookie sheet. Make sure you don’t try to bunch it all up or it won’t cook right. Separate into two batches if you need to.
6. Sprinkle with salt to taste.

7. Bake 15 minutes then turn over and bake for another 15 min or until crisp.
8. Enjoy!

This really was tasty and is an awesome substitute for potato chips. They do however get kind of soggy after a while, so they probably need to be eaten quickly. But it’s not really hard.

Do you like kale chips? How do you make yours? 



Meal Plan Monday

Posted on June 18th, 2012 by Discount Debbie

It’s Monday and I am meal planning. Have you tried it yet? It’s a great way to save money! This week is kind of weird for us because we are going out of town so I only have 4 days planned. Don’t worry, I’ll be back at it next week!

Spaghetti-I have this in the freezer from the last time we made it. So this will be super easy!
Green beans

Chili Dogs-What can I say? We are creatures of habit.

Breakfast for Dinner!
Fresh Fruit
Scrambled eggs

Chicken Spaghetti-I love my mama for this exact recipe and you’ll love Thrifty Divas!

Off on a family vacation!

Please share with us your meal plans. I need more ideas from our readers!

Ask the Expert: Freezer Meals

Posted on January 27th, 2012 by Discount Debbie

Next week we are going to interview Jenny Stanger who is the author of Fabulous Freezer meals. She is going to pour out all of her best tips to Thrifty Divas readers on making freezer meals. Do you have a question for her? Let us know and we will ask Jenny. Make sure you check out her website too for tons of tips and even some great how-to videos! Next weeks interview is going to be fun so make sure you check it out!


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