Sunday, April 4, 2010

Weekly Menu for the Week of April 5

Happy Easter!!!

What amazing weather we have had!!! I have enjoyed a wonderful Spring Stay-Cation with the family! Whether you were near or far, I hope you have enjoyed the week.

Monday is the home opener for the Pirates – LET’S GO BUCS!!! What a better way to kick off the baseball season than with some baseball fare with a twist. And let’s hope – REALLY HOPE – they have a winning season!!! Remember the leftover ham I wanted you to grab? Well, Tuesday we will use up leftover ham in one of my kids favorite dinners – Ranch Noodles with Ham. We are also going to fire up the grill and BBQ some chicken. The side dish that night – Southern Green Beans – is one of our favorite ways to eat green beans and another great way to use leftover ham. Thursday and Friday we will reinvent our leftovers by having breakfast for dinner on Thursday – Egg Burritos using the leftover chili from our hot dogs and BBQ Chicken Pizza on Friday night.

Monday Let’s Go Bucs!!!

Chili Dogs
Carrots with Ranch dip
Apple Crisp

Chili Dogs (adapted from Food Network)

1 T. of Canola Oil
1 small onion, diced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 T. of chili powder
1 (14 oz.) can of black beans
1 (14 oz.) can of petite diced tomatoes, drained
6 hot dogs
6 hot dog buns
Shredded Cheddar Cheese

Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the onions and the garlic and sauté until soft. Add the bell peppers and chili powder. Cook for about 1 minute and add the black beans. Cook until warmed through, about 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes, bring to a simmer and then reduce heat. Cook until the chili thickens, about 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, cook the hot dogs however you like – boil, broil, or grill. Once the dogs are done, place a hot dog in a bun, top with the chili and then sprinkle with cheese. Place under the broiler for about 1 minute or until the cheese melts. Obviously, the kids may just enjoy theirs the old fashioned way – served with a lot of ketchup!!!!

*** Save extra chili for dinner on Thursday night – double duty!!!***

Apple Crisp

5 large Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and sliced
1/2 cup of white sugar
1 T. of flour
1 t. of cinnamon
1 cup of oats
1 cup of flour
1 cup of packed brown sugar
¼ t. of baking powder
¼ t. of baking soda
1 stick of butter, soft

Preheat oven to 350˚.

Combine apples, white sugar, 1 T. flour and cinnamon together. Pour into a 9x9 baking dish. Combine the oats, 1 cup of flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda and butter. Crumble evenly over the apple mixture. Bake at 350˚ for about 45 minutes, until the top is golden brown.

Serve by itself or with a scoop of ice cream!


Ranch Noodles with Ham
Steamed Broccoli

Ranch Noodles with Ham (adapted from Southern Living)

1 pkg. of egg noodles
1 cup of diced ham
¼ cup of butter
½ cup of sour cream
½ cup of Ranch dressing (make ahead with the Hidden Valley packets – the best Ranch dressing!!!!)
½ cup of parmesan cheese

This comes together quickly and should be served right away!

Cook egg noodles according to the directions, drain and return to the pot. Meanwhile, sauté ham in a skillet sprayed with Pam until crisp and fragrant. Set aside.

Add butter and remaining ingredients to the noodles, stir to blend. To serve, plate the noodles and top each serving with sautéed ham.


BBQ Chicken
Southern Style Green Beans

BBQ Chicken (adapted from Food Network)

2 quarts of water
2 T. of kosher salt
¼ cup of brown sugar
2 minced garlic cloves
4 sprigs of fresh thyme or 1 T. of dried thyme
6 bone-in chicken breasts or chicken legs or thighs
2 cups of your favorite BBQ sauce

Mix the water, salt, brown sugar, garlic and thyme in a 2-gallon sized zip-lock bag. This is the brine and will help season the chicken. Add the chicken, close the bag and refrigerate anywhere from 15 minutes to 2 hours – depending on how much time you have.

Preheat oven to 375˚. Prepare the grill by spraying Pam on the grate and then preheat the grill to medium heat. Take the chicken out of the brine and pat it dry with paper towels. Place the chicken on the grill and cook for about 5 minutes per side. Transfer the grilled chicken to a jelly-roll pan or cookie sheet and place in the oven. Cook in the oven for 15 minutes. Remove the chicken and cover it with BBQ sauce and cook for an additional 30 minutes basting a second time with BBQ sauce about half-way through.

Southern-Style Green Beans

1 lb. of green beans – fresh or a bag of frozen
1 cup of diced ham
1 stick of butter
1 can of chicken broth
2 T. of minced onion

Bring butter and chicken broth to a boil in a large saucepan. Add green beans, ham and onion. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 45 minutes.

This can be prepared once the chicken is in the oven.


Breakfast for Dinner

Egg Burritos with Chili
Fresh Strawberries

Egg Burritos

6 large eggs
¼ cup of cream or milk
½ t. of salt
2 T. of butter
Burrito size tortillas
Leftover Chili
Finely shredded cheddar cheese or Mexican blend shredded cheese

Reheat chili in a saucepan over medium heat. Melt butter in a large skillet. Meanwhile, beat eggs, cream or milk, and salt. Add to skillet and cook making large curds with a spatula. When curds are formed, remove the eggs from the heat. Warm the tortillas in the microwave until soft – about 10 – 20 seconds depending on how many you do at a time. To assemble, place eggs down the center of each burrito and top each with the chili and sprinkle with cheese. Fold in the ends of the burrito and roll up the sides to seal. To ensure that the cheese in the burrito has melted, you could microwave the completed burrito for 10 seconds. Serve with your favorite salsa and sour cream.


BBQ Chicken Pizza

BBQ Chicken Pizza

1 (12 in.) pre-baked pizza crust (Boboli)
½ cup of BBQ sauce – leftover from Wednesday Dinner
Leftover chicken cut into chunks
1 medium onion, sliced
2 cups of shredded cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese – Mexican blend cheese
¼ cup of fresh cilantro

Preheat oven to 400˚. Sauté onions in a large skillet in 2 t. of canola oil. Spread the BBQ sauce over the pizza crust. Top with the chicken, cilantro, grilled onions and cheese.

Bake in the oven for about 10-12 minutes or until the cheese has melted and is bubbly.

For Ranch lovers, drizzle ranch dressing over pizza when it comes out of the oven or serve it on the side to dip.

*** If you are using fresh pizza dough, pre-bake the crust before adding the toppings.

And now for the shopping list. As always, double check your pantry, fridge and freezer to see if you already have any of the items listed below. This will reduce your spending and create less waste!


2 Medium Onions
Red bell pepper
5 Large Granny Smith apples
Fresh Thyme or dried
Strawberries - GE special B1G1
Salad - GE special B1G1

Parmesan Cheese

Canola Oil
Chili powder
White Sugar - GE special
Flour - GE special
Brown Sugar
Baking Powder
Baking soda
Ranch dressing – or packets of Hidden Valley
Kosher Salt
BBQ sauce
Chicken Broth
Minced Onion

Canned Goods/Ethnic Foods/Dry Goods
Black beans
Petite diced tomatoes
Egg Noodles
Boboli Pizza Crust or other pre-baked pizza crust

Seafood/Meat Case/Butcher
Hot dogs - GE special on BallPark Franks
Diced Ham – check for leftovers from Easter!!!
Bone-in chicken Breasts or Chicken Leg Quarters

Frozen Foods
Bag of Green Beans - GE special on Hanover

Shredded Cheddar Cheese OR Mexican Blend Cheese, Shredded
Sour Cream - GE special on Heluva Good - check for internet coupon
Cream or Milk
Burrito Size Tortillas

Hot Dog Buns


Follow the plan so you can save time, money, and a few calories! Remember – cooking our own food is healthier than ordering in and eating out any day!!! Your family, wallet and waistline will thank you!

I hope you all enjoy your week, the recipes and the savings!


  1. a stick of butter in the green beans? really? tell me you use a little less (please!). I realize they're southern though!;)

  2. Nope - I use it as the recipe suggests. We don't have these very often. ;)

  3. But you could easily use less butter.