"But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus." Philipians 3:13b,14

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Pina Colada Green Monster (YUM!) and Grocery Budget Update

I am always looking for ways to get more iron, and therefore, spinach/dark leafy greens into my diet. I eat a lot of greens as salad, or sometimes lightly cooked with dinner, but generally not for breakfast!

But then I saw this recipe, for a smoothie that actually has a big handful of spinach tossed in-

......I was scared. Spinach in a smoothie??!! Sounds GROSS!

But guess what?! It's not! It is DELICIOUS!!!! You truly cannot even taste the spinach, and yet, you get all the nutrients from having it in your smoothie!

So I used my Magic Bullet (LOVE that thing!) to make this, but a regular blender would work fine too!

You need a heaping 1/2 cup of frozen pineapple (they sell frozen pineapple tidbits at Trader Joe's)

1/2 can lite coconut milk

A handful of spinach leaves

And 1/2 of a frozen banana. What I did was to slice the banana and put it in a ziploc, then throw the baggie into the freezer so it's portioned and ready to go!

So just throw it all into the blender and blend it until smooth!!

I was impressed! It tasted GREAT and kept me full until lunch time- not an easy task!!

This recipe is from here.

So I talked about how I was going to challenge myself this last month to stick to a $250 every two weeks grocery budget in this post.

So the first two-week period, I went over. By $40, which is quite a lot. I was still sort of resisting making some changes to a few of the basic items I buy, like coffee, toiletries, cereal, fancier baking ingredients, more expensive cheese instead of just bulk blocks.

This last grocery day (I still have a week to go, so I haven't used all our money yet) I only spent $175!! I plan my grocery list around two weeks worth of meals, so this was very exciting for me! So now I still have $75 left to spend this next week! I focused on using some of the things I had in my freezer/pantry, and making sure to include a few meatless meals to cut back on the cost.

One of my favorite cookbooks when you're trying to stay on a really strict budget is this one:

It's called Miserly Meals. I have used a TON of the recipes from this book- I bought it probably 7 years ago. It has simple, nutritious meals that you can make very cheaply. Also, there is a section for making snack items, a vegetarian section, and a section on a bunch of ways to use cooked turkey for when turkey goes on sale.

Wow I figured out how to put a link in a post! Do I get an award for that or something?? Ha ha!! (I am a technical dunce)

So, my question for you is this- do you have a not-too-expensive meal that is a staple in your house? If so, could you please share it in the comments? It is always nice to have some new, tested ideas! :)

Lasagna (from the last Freezer Cooking day)
Garlic Bread


  1. Hi There!
    I am a fellow sonlighter. (I am Cathy_Ohio on the sonlight forums.) I recently started a sonlight blog roll and I am trying to get the word out. Would you be interested in linking your blog up? If so, you can join here: http://theattachedmama.blogspot.com/2011/04/sonlight-blog-roll-for-2011-2012.html

    Your fan!

  2. That smoothie looks delicious :-) Way to go on sticking to your budget.. I am trying to figure out how to cut ours down a bit but eating healthy sometimes can be a bit more pricey.

  3. Will do Cathy! Thanks for the heads up!!

    Stacy, I so agree! I have found that it's possible to eat healthy on a budget but it is A LOT of work! One thing we have in our favor is local, fairly inexpensive produce- a lot of other places in the country have to pay an arm and a leg for that!!

  4. Oooo. I'll have to remember this once I've got my salad table growing well. :)

  5. Baked potatoes and salad are a veggie meal go to about once a week now. You can splurge a little more on what you dress your potatoes with knowing that it is the main course. Cottage cheese is yummy and healthy with it too. Bacon bits are my new budget saver too. Throw some in kids breakfast sandwhich for taste w/o extra time, money or grease. Bacon bits can go in soups, salads, burgers and casseroles. On top of, I bought them at veggie stand and then realized they were soy. Bonus! Jenn Coyl

  6. I have also made this with Almond milk (regular for a little sweeter) and a little fresh grated ginger. Very refreshing and filling!