Monday, May 4, 2009

Refrigerator Muffins

While packing this week I came across an old notebook of recipes and found this one for refrigerator raisin bran muffins. I was thrilled because there are lots of great deals on cereal this week and this will be a great way to use up some of what we've purchased. If you haven't already printed some, you can snag Kellogg's $1/box coupons by clicking on the box at the top left of this page.

I love this recipe because the muffins aren't too sweet, and it's so convenient to have the batter in the fridge so you can have hot muffins on the table in just a few minutes. It also makes it easy to fix just a small batch--a tin of 6 muffins fits nicely in my toaster oven. The batter will keep for a week in the fridge and I think it yields about 24 muffins. I not positive about how many because the recipe is a little smudged where something was dropped on it! :)

2 eggs
2 cups buttermilk
1/2 c vegetable oil
1/2 c sugar
3 cups raisin bran cereal
2 1/2 c all-purpose flour
1 tbsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt

Mix first four ingredients together in a large mixing bowl. Stir in raisin bran. In a separate bowl, sift flour, baking soda, and salt together. Add to wet ingredients, stirring just until mixed. Batter can be refrigerated up to 7 days.

To bake, preheat oven to 400. Grease muffin cups and fill 2/3 full with batter. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.

Take a look at Tasty Tuesday and Tempt My Tummy Tuesday for lots more great recipes!

Updated 5/5: I was supposed to finish packing up the kitchen last night, but when I realized the baking supplies and a set of mixing bowls were still here, I decided to mix up a batch of these. I only had about 1 1/2 c of all-purpose flour (I never run out, but have been letting things get low in preparation for moving!), so I subbed a cup of quick oats for the rest of the flour. I baked six muffins in the toaster oven this morning, and my family thinks I'm awesome! My 20 month old daughter ate 2, my super-picky 3 yr old son had 1 1/2 , and hubs and I polished off the rest. After baking 6, I'd say the recipe will probably yield about 18. I'm so glad I found this recipe--I think it will become a regular breakfast around here. It would also be really easy to vary by adding nuts, sunflower seeds, dried fruits, or even different cereals.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

We're moving this week (aaack!), so my menu planning is really just jotting down a few ideas of things we can throw together quickly. I dream that one day I'll be organized enough to prepare for something like a move by making all kinds of meals ahead of time, then storing them in the freezer so we can just heat and eat healthy homemade meals when life gets crazy. Until then, my plan is to buy lots of snacks and convenience foods in times like this. I figure living on peanut butter sandwiches and hot pockets for a week won't kill us, and is probably better for us than eating fast food. It's definitely better for the budget! :)

Armed with that philosophy, here's what we'll be eating this week:

cold cereal
scrambled egg on bagel
bagel & cream cheese

zucchini-black bean-bacon quesadillas, fruit
pbjs, chips, fruit
hot pockets, chips, fruit
tuna salad sandwiches, chips, fruit
pesto pasta

waffles, bacon, fruit
turkey (from freezer), stuffing, steamed broccoli
ginger-soy noodles w/ broccoli
zucchini-black bean-bacon quesadillas, fruit
whole-wheat pasta w/ broccoli, bacon & cheese sauce

Pasta is definitely my favorite quick meal, in case you didn't pick up on that! :) I fried up a pound of bacon tonight, so it's ready to go for all those meals that will use it. That will make several meals really quick to put together. We had the quesadillas for dinner tonight, and the leftover filling is in the fridge ready to go for lunch tomorrow. We used monterrey jack cheese and really liked the combination of bacon, black beans & zuchini--definitely something we'll be making again! Maybe next time I'll add some corn, too.

I went to Aldi tonight and spent $27.86 on the following:
two pkgs frozen stuffed sandwiches (hot pockets) 3.78
frozen multigrain waffles 1.29
ginger-soy noodle dinner 1.69
zucchini 1.59
broccoli 1.65
chewy fruit snacks .99
pesto pasta dinner kit 1.29
stuffing mix .89
cocktail crackers 1.19
syrup 1.39
saltines .89
pasta salad kit .99
yogurt-covered raisins 1.49
dried fruit 1.49
mixed nuts 1.99
whole wheat pasta 1.09

Hubby will run to Kroger and pick up fruit (probably bananas, apples and grapes), eggs, bagels, and milk tomorrow. He'll probably get some Kellogg's cereal, too, since they have some varieties on sale this week for $1.99 and we have $1 coupons. (Click on the link at the top left of this page if you haven't printed yours yet! CVS and Kmart both have some Kellogg's varieties on sale this week, too.) We eat a lot of cereal for breakfast, but we also love to snack on it. As a matter of fact, I'm crunching on some frosted mini-wheats as I type. :)

Want more meal-planning inspiration? Take a look at Menu Plan Monday on

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

We did better at sticking to our menu last week but still ate out too much, especially over the weekend. We're going to be moving in less than two weeks and hubby and I both seem to be using that as an excuse to go out for dinner. ("We'll have more energy for packing after the kids go to bed if don't have to cook and clean up!") Well, very little packing has been done and we're spending too much on eating out. Hopefully I'll have more willpower this week! :-)


frozen waffles and Boca sausage links
cold cereal and yogurt
scrambled eggs and toast

tuna salad sandwiches, apples, pretzels
pizza quesadillas, grapes, salad
spinach and brown rice casserole, salad
baked potatoes w/broccoli, cheese and bacon bits
pbjs, grapes, pretzels
taco casserole leftovers
warm potato salad leftovers

warm potato salad w/ smoked sausage (made w/ Boca smoked sausage instead of the real stuff), salad
taco casserole, salad
spinach & bacon pizzas on tortilla crusts, fruit salad (apples, grapes, mandarin oranges & walnuts w/ yogurt)
grilled ham & cheese sandwiches, canned tomato soup
black bean & corn stew over brown rice (my meatless version of this recipe)

Be sure to visit OrgJunkie for lots more menu planning ideas!

Grocery Shopping

I finally went to the grocery store today for some real shopping--with a list and a plan and everything. There were quick trips to Aldi and Kroger on Friday for some necessities (grapes, cheese, crackers, bread, ham, pretzels, soft drinks, and a great deal on Boca products), but unfortunately I can't find the receipts on those. I think we spent about $16--definitely between $15 and $20.

I shopped at Aldi today and here's what I got for $20.94:
ground beef 3.70
frozen waffles 1.29
black beans .59
2 8oz. blocks of cheese 2.58
2 lbs green grapes 2.69
can of albacore tuna 1.05
yogurt 1.59
tortilla chips .99
12-grain bread 1.69
italian-blend salad 1.00
iceberg salad .69
egg noodles .99
pepperoni 1.99

I also had to pay .10 for a shopping bag. I took one, but it wasn't big enough to hold all I bought. Even though it's only a dime, it just kills me when I have to buy a bag there!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

I haven't been very organized for the last couple of weeks, so I didn't do any menu planning or blogging. We did stay under our $40/week grocery budget, but largely because we ate out far too much. I can tell I've put a few pounds on lately and I'm sure the frequent trips to Arby's have contributed to that! I'm determined to get organized and back on track this week. I went grocery shopping on Friday (the first day of our budget week) without a list or a plan and spent $39.26. That means I had to look at what I bought and what was in the house and come up with a plan to feed us, since there wasn't any money left to run out and pick up extra ingredients. It's not the greatest menu ever, but we won't be going hungry! :-)

Scrambled eggs, toast
Cold cereal, yogurt
Bacon, toast

Ham sandwiches, pretzels, grapes
Hot dogs, chips, apples
Leftover pasta w/ chickpeas & broccoli
Pbjs, pretzels, apples
Leftover white bean soup
Omelets, toast, canned fruit

Pasta w/ chickpeas & broccoli
Vegetable stir-fry, egg rolls
Mixed-grain pancakes, bacon, fruit
White bean soup, cornbread
Spaghetti w/ meat sauce, garlic bread, salad
Chorizo tacos, roasted potatoes

Check out Menu Plan Monday at for hundreds of menu ideas!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

Last week we ate several "picnic" lunches at our new house while we were painting. That meant lots of sandwiches (pbj or lunch meat), chips, and apples. Because of that, there were several dishes we didn't make that are back on the menu again this week. We'll probably have a few more "picnics" this week, so I haven't planned much for lunches. The Mexican lasagna should make enough leftovers for at least two meals, so I think this menu will get us through the week.

Oatmeal w/ cinnamon apples
Cold cereal, bananas
Scrambled eggs & toast

Peanut butter sandwiches, pretzels, bananas
Canned tomato soup, grilled cheese sandwiches
Turkey sandwiches, pretzels, apples
Popcorn shrimp, fries, apples

Veggie stir fry, egg rolls
Mixed grain pancakes, sausage, cinnamon apples
Open-faced pot roast sandwiches w/ gravy, au gratin potatoes, corn
Mexican lasagna, fruit
Sausage & cheese omelets, fruit, toast

Be sure to visit Menu Plan Monday for hundreds of great menus!

more Krogering

Trying to keep food at two houses is proving to be challenging, especially since there's not a fridge at the new house and we're making do with a cooler. I ran back to Kroger this morning so we could fix a quick lunch over there while we were painting.

Oscar Mayer turkey 2.50
bread 1.19
potato salad 1.99
pretzels 1.00

I spent $6.68, which leaves us with $16.31 in this week's budget.