Sunday, September 18, 2011

Canning Recipes

Canning Tips

~My Favorite Canning Book ever is Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving. Some of the recipes here come from that book.

~The recipes that I have are not your usual peaches or pears in syrup recipes. You can find information for those items in most basic canning books and other cookbooks.

~All recipes here have been tried and LOVED by everyone who has tried them.

~Altitude adjustments are as follows:

All recipes list processing times for 0 – 1000 feet above sea level.

1001 to 3000 feet above sea level add 5 minutes

3001 to 6000 feet above sea level add 10 minutes (this is my altitude range)

6001 to 8000 feet above sea level add 15 minutes

8001 to 10000 feet above sea level add 20 minutes

Have fun and don’t be afraid to try new fun things when you bottle your own food! Just make sure to follow the recipes. Adding your own ingredients or omitting ingredients makes a huge difference – not only in taste but also in the SAFETY of home canned foods.

I will add more recipes as I try them!

Chunky Salsa

Makes 6 – 7 pints

7 lbs tomatoes (about ¼ bushel)

10 anaheim or poblano chili peppers, seeded and chopped

3 jalapeno or Serrano peppers, seeded and chopped

1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped

2 large white onions, chopped

1 bunch cilantro, snipped

½ c white vinegar

5 cloves garlic, minced or 1 T pre-minced garlic

2 T sugar

1 t salt

1 t black pepper

Peel and chop tomatoes. Drain in a large colander for 30 minutes. Measure 14 cups of tomatoes and place in a large pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 45 minutes. Stir frequently. Stir in all other ingredients and return to a boil. Remove from heat. Pour into hot pint jars. Leave ½ inch headspace. Wipe jar rims and adjust lids and rings. Process in a boiling water canner for 35 minutes. At my altitude (4500 ft) it is 45 minutes.

This is a fairly mild salsa. If you want more “heat”, don’t seed the hot peppers.

Peach Salsa

Makes 4 -5 pints

½ c white vinegar

6 cups peeled, pitted and chopped peaches

1 ¼ c chopped red onion (about 1 LARGE)

4 jalapeno peppers, seeded and finely chopped

1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped

1 bunch chopped cilantro

2 T liquid honey

1 clove garlic, finely chopped

1 ½ t ground cumin

Combine all ingredients in a large saucepan. Bring to boil over medium high heat, stirring constantly. Reduce heat and boil gently, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Ladle into hot jars, leaving ½ inch headspace. Wipe rim, adjust lid and ring. Process in a boiling water canner for 15 minutes. At my altitude (4500 ft) process for 25 minutes.

For a hotter salsa, add ½ t cayenne pepper and do not seed your jalapenos.

Peach Barbecue Sauce

Makes about 8 ½ pint jars

6 cups finely chopped peeled and pitted peaches

1 c finely chopped and seeded red and green bell peppers

1 c finely chopped white or red onion

1 T finely chopped garlic

1 ¼ c liquid honey

¾ c cider vinegar

1 T Worcestershire sauce

2 t hot pepper flakes

2 t ground dry mustard

2 t salt

Combine all ingredients in a large pot. Bring to a boil over medium high heat. Reduce heat and boil gently, stirring frequently for about 25 minutes. Ladle into hot jars leaving ½ inch headspace. Wipe rim and adjust lid and ring. Process in a boiling water canner for 15 minutes. At my altitude (4500 ft) process for 25 min.

Sweet and Sour Sauce

Makes 7 quarts

8 c tomatoes, peeled and diced

4 c bell peppers (red and green), seeded and diced

4 c onions, chopped

7 c sugar – divided

3 c white vinegar

1 T salt

1 c clear gel A (this is very important – nothing can be used as a substitute)

1 cup water

2 20 oz cans pineapple, chunks or tidbits

3 c sliced carrots

Drain pineapple, set aside juice. Mix juice with 1 c water. Mix clear gel A with 3 c sugar. Set aside.

Mix all vegetables with vinegar, pineapple and salt in a LARGE pot. Bring to a boil. Add 4 cups of sugar and bring back to a boil. Pour pineapple juice mixture into clear gel A and sugar mixture – whisk with a wire whip until well combined. Add to vegetable mixture and simmer for 15 – 20 minutes. Stir constantly to avoid scorching the bottom. Pour into hot jars. Wipe rims and adjust rings and lids. Process in a boiling water canner for 20 minutes. At my altitude (4500 ft) process for 30 minutes. If you would like to use your pressure canner, process at 10 lbs pressure for 10 minutes.

Pie Filling

Makes 6 -7 quarts

4 c brown sugar

1 c cornstarch

1 ½ T cinnamon

1 ½ t nutmeg

1 t salt

1 cube margarine

10 c water

3 T lemon juice

In a large pan, combine sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and margarine. Add water. Cook until thickened over medium heat – stirring constantly. Add the lemon juice. Put sauce into 7 quart jars – filling 1/3 full. Then fill jars with peeled apple OR peach slices. Add for sauce on top if necessary to cover all fruit. Leave 1 inch headspace. Wipe rims. Adjust lids and rings. Process 30 minutes in a boiling water canner. At my altitude (4500 ft) process for 40 minutes.

This is amazing for pies, cobblers, crisps, or heated and poured over ice cream! And it makes your house smell heavenly while you are canning it!

Chocolate Raspberry Sauce

Makes 6 half pint jars

½ c unsweetened cocoa powder

1 pkg regular powdered fruit pectin

4 ½ c crushed red raspberries

¼ c lemon juice

6 ¾ c granulated sugar

In a bowl, combine cocoa powder and pectin, stirring untel evenly blended. Set aside.

In a large pan, stir raspberries and lemon juice. Whisk in pectin mixture until dissolved. Bring to a boil over high heat. Stir frequently. Add sugar all at once and return to a full rolling boil, stirring constantly. Boil hard for ONE minute. Remove from heat and skim off foam. Ladle into hot jars, leaving ¼ inch headspace. Wipe rims. Adjust lids and rings. Process for 10 minutes in a boiling water canner. At my altitude (4500 ft), process for 20 minutes.

This is so tasty on ice cream or over brownies!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

I'm ba-a-a-a-a-ck with a bunch of misc recipes!

Crockpot Oriental Chicken

1/2 c light soy sauce
1/2 c honey
2 T sesame seeds
4 boneless chicken breast halves

Mix together soy sauce, honey and sesame seeds.  Put chicken breasts in a sprayed crockpot and pour sauce over top.  Cover and cook on low for 4 - 6 hours and serve over rice. 

Cheese Whiz Soup

1 1/2 c grated carrots
1 c diced celery
3 qts chicken broth OR 12 c water with 8 chicken boullion cubes
3 cubes margarine
2 c flour
15 - 16 oz jar cheese whiz - can use lower fat
1/2 pkg frozen broccoli

Cook celery, carrots and broccoli in broth until tender.  Meanwhile in a separate sauce pan, melt butter.  Stir in flour and cook for 2 minutes.  Add to boiling mixture.  Remove pot from heat and stir until thick.  Stir in cheese whiz until creamy.  Its not healthy, its not low fat but oh is it warm and tasty!!!!  :)

Corn Chowder

3 - 4 diced potatoes
1/2 c chopped celery
1 qt half and half - I use the fat free
3/4 c margarine or butter
3/4 c flour
1 t thyme
1/2 c bacon bits
1/2 c diced ham
3 cans creamed corn

Boil potatoes and celery until soft.  Melt butter in a separate pan, stir in flour and thyme.  Slowly whisk in half and half.  Cook until thickened and then pour into vegetable mixture.  Add bacon, ham and creamed corn and salt and pepper to taste.  Cook to desired thickness.

Randi's Sour Cream Enchiladas

1 lb hamburger, browned
1 16 oz container sour cream - can use fat free
2 c shredded cheese
1 dozen flour tortillas
1 can mild green enchilada sauce
1 can cream of chicken soup

 Mix sour cream in with burger.  Spoon 2 T of burger mixture in a tortilla and sprinkle with cheese.  Roll up and place seam side down in a sprayed 9 x 13 pan.  Repeat until mixture is gone.  Combine sauce and soup - pour over tolled tortillas.  Top with remaining cheese.  Bake uncovered at 350 for 30 minutes

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Oh What Do You Do in the Summertime????

Well, if you are like me at all, cooking is not high on my priority list during the summer.  I like fast meals that are healthy and don't heat up my house!  Thought I would share a few more of my favorites!  Also, we're half way through summer and kids are starting to get restless.  I'll start off with a few fun ideas using ingredients from your kitchen that hopefully can keep your little ones occupied for a while (perhaps while you are preparing dinner???).

Sidewalk Paint

1 1 lb box cornstarch (the cheaper the better)
3 1/3 c water
food coloring

Mix the cornstarch and water together well until there aren't any clumps.  Pour into 4 to 6 containers.  Add 5 drops of desired coloring to each container (I found some neon colors at the grocery store and my kids love them).  Then provide the kids with cheap paintbrushes - bigger than 1 inch wide and not the foam type.  Have them go to town on your driveway or sidewalk.  These paints wash off better than sidewalk chalk.  The colors look brighter after they dry and they DON'T STAIN clothes or skin!

Bubble Mix

2 c Joy Dishwashing soap
6 c water
3/4 c light corn syrup

Combine in a large glass jar.  Shake well and refrigerate when not in use.  Be creative about what is used for a "bubble wand".  If you make a huge batch of this, you can actually put it in a kiddie swimming pool.  Place a hula hoop in the bottom of the pool and step inside the hoop.  Bring it up over your body and you get to be inside of a bubble!

Play Dough

1/2 c salt
1 c flour
1 c water
2 t oil
2 t cream of tartar

Mix together in a saucepan.  Heat for three minutes, stirring often until it thickens into a ball.  Take out of pan and knead desired food coloring in.  Store in a plastic bag in the fridge.

Edible Finger Paints

3 small packages instant pudding, all different flavors - vanilla, chocolate and pistachio work well
4 1/2 c milk per box

Mix together each box of pudding with 1 1/2 c milk.  Refrigerate for 5 to 10 minutes.  Outside, give your children newspapers or other big sheets of paper and let them fingerpaint with the pudding.  They can lick their fingers to their hearts content!

1 3 oz pkg Jello
1 pkg Kool Aid
1 c sugar
2 c boiling water
2 c cold water

Dissolve Jello, Kool Aid and sugar in boiling water.  Add cold water and then freeze in desired shapes.


Dessert first of course:

Lemonade Pie (courtesy of the Lion House cookbook)
 This is my all-time favorite summer dessert.  Its light and sweet and tangy!  Perfect on a hot day!

2 envelopes unflavored gelatin (Knox)
1/2 c cold water
1 c boiling water
1 1/3 c sugar
1 12 oz can of one of the following (FROZEN Lime-ade, Pink Lemonade, Lemonade, Raspberry Lemonade concentrate)
1 large tub whipped topping
2 graham cracker pie crusts

Mix gelatin and cold water together.  Add boiling water and sugar, stir until dissolved.  Add concentrate and stir until dissolved.  Chill until very thick.  Mix in whipped topping with electric mixer. Pour into pie shells. Refrigerate at least one hour before serving.

Easy Salad

1 lb container cottage cheese
1 small box jello (I prefer orange or strawberry)
1 medium carton whipped topping
1 can mandarin oranges

Mix together and let chill in the fridge for at least an hour before serving.  This isn't a favorite of my kids but my hubby and I love it.  I use no fat cottage cheese and lite whipped topping so its almost healthy!

Grape Salad

1 lb seedless green grapes
1 lb seedless red grapes
1 8 oz brick cream cheese, softened
1/4 c sugar
1/4 c ready to drink orange juice

Wash grapes and remove from stems.  Place in a large bowl.  Mix together cream cheese, sugar and orange juice.  Fold mixture into grapes.  Sprinkle with chopped pecans and brown sugar if desired.

Spinach Salad with Dressing

1 pkg baby spinach
1 pkg romaine lettuce
3 /4 c grated swiss cheese
1 pkg real bacon bits or 1/2 lb fried bacon, crumbled
1 c cottage cheese, drained
1 can mandarin oranges
1 c fresh sliced strawberries if you have them
1/2 c slivered almonds, if desired
1/2 c fresh mushrooms, sliced, if desired

1 1/2 T poppy seeds
3/4 c white vinegar
1 1/2 c vegetable or olive oil
1/2 c sugar
1 1/2 T grated onion
1 1/2 t salt
1 1/2 t dry mustard

At serving time, toss all salad ingredients together. Blend all dressing ingredients together in a blender and toss with salad right before serving.

Chicken Coleslaw

1 pkg coleslaw mix or 1 head cabbage, shredded
2 cooked and diced chicken breasts
1 pkg ramen noodles, chicken or oriental flavored - broken up, reserve seasoning packet for dressing
1 pkg slivered almonds
1/2 c sunflower seeds
1 can mandarin oranges

1 c oil (I like to use 1 T of sesame oil and then fill the rest of the measuring cup with regular oil)
2 T sugar
1 1/2 T soy sauce
1/2 c vinegar (rice vinegar is the best)
seasoning packet from noodles
1 T sesame seeds

Toss all salad ingredients together.  Whisk dressing ingredients together and stir into salad.  Serve immediately.

Chicken Salad Sandwich Filling 
 perfect for rolls, croissants or on a bed of lettuce

4 c diced cooked chicken
2 c seedless green or red grapes, cut in half
1 c chopped celery
1/2 c sweetened flake coconut
1 c chopped cashews OR sliced almonds
1 c mayo (I'm a huge fan of the mayo made with olive oil - less fat but better taste than the regular!)
1 T honey mustard
Salt and pepper to taste

Mix together.  You may need to add more mayo to get it to the right consistency.  If you serve it on lettuce, top it off with some chow mein or rice noodles and some mandarin oranges for fun!

And for those of you who still like an actual COOKED meal - here's some slow cooker options that you may like!

Honey Chicken

1/2 c honey
1 T dijon mustard
1 t salt
1 t curry powder
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts

Combine first 4 ingredients.  Place chicken breasts in a SPRAYED slow cooker.  Pour sauce over top.  Cook on low for 4 - 5 hours or until chicken is done.  DO NOT COOK ON HIGH - it will create a big clean up because the sauce will burn!
Serve over rice or pasta.

Alfredo Chicken Casserole

3 c cooked chicken, diced
1 can cream of chicken soup
2 pkgs of Alfredo sauce mix, made according to package directions (or one jar - approx 2 c worth)
1 c sour cream
1 can diced water chestnuts (if desired)
1 c celery chopped
1 16 oz package desired pasta, cooked and drained
2 c grated cheese
1 1/2 c frozen peas

Combine all ingredients in a SPRAYED slow cooker.  Top with Parmesan cheese.  Cook on low for 2 - 3 hours. (if baking in the oven, bake for 45 minutes at 350)

Enchatacamale Pie

1 1/2 lb hamburger, browned
2 cans favorite enchilada sauce
1 can tomato sauce
2 cans sliced olives
2 c grated cheese
2 dozen corn tortillas, broken into fourths

Mix burger and sauces.  In a slow cooker, layer the following: sauce, tortilla, olives, cheese.  Repeat until all ingredients are used. Cook on low for 5 hours or bake in the oven for 3 hours at 300 degrees.

And the last recipe for the day:

The BEST Marinade Ever
(this works for chicken, turkey breasts, beef and even wild game)

1 c oil
1 c soy sauce (can use lite if desired)
1 can lemon lime soda pop

Mix together and place with desired meat in an airtight bowl, making sure all pieces are covered.  Marinade in refrigerator for 8 to 24 hours.  When ready to grill, remove from marinade and grill until done over medium to medium low heat.  This recipe will cover between 4 - 6 lbs of meat.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Summer Fun!

Summer is not the time to be cooking, that's for sure!  Its too hot and there are waaaaay too many fun things to do.  Here are a few fun recipes that you can take to bbq's or just enjoy at home!

Guilt Free Ice Cream
3 c fresh fruit, pureed in blender 
1 1/2 c sugar
1 can fat free evaporated milk
1 can fat free sweetened condensed milk
1 quart fat free half and half
1 T vanilla
1/4 t salt

Combine and freeze according to your ice cream freezers directions.  This recipe is for a 1 gallon ice cream freezer.

Fancy Ice Cream Sandwiches
1 16 ct box of mini ice cream sandwiches
1 can cherry pie filling
1 jar hot fudge sauce

Line the bottom of a 9 x 13 pan with ice cream sandwiches.  Spread cherry pie filling over top.  Drizzle with hot fudge sauce and put in freezer until serving time.  Spoon out 1 ice cream sandwich to each person and put a squirt of whipped topping on the top.

Cottage Cheese Jello Salad
1 pint small curd cottage cheese
1 small box jello - any flavor
1 8 oz container whipped topping
2 c desired fruit (strawberries, mandarin oranges, fruit cocktail, pineapple, raspberries)

Combine cottage cheese and jello.  Fold in fruit and whipped topping.  Chill for at least 1 hour before serving.

Cucumbers and Tomatoes - this is so easy but so good!
2 fresh cucumbers, sliced
2 - 4 tomatoes (depending on size), diced
1 c mayo (can use light or fat free)
1/4 t pepper
1/2 dill weed

Combine all ingredients and chill for 2 hours before serving.

Pizza Pasta Salad
16 oz desired pasta, cooked, drained and cooled
3 oz pepperoni slices, cut in half
1 can olives, drained
8 oz mozzarella cheese, cut into cubes
8 oz fresh mushrooms, sliced
2 tomatoes, diced
1 green pepper, diced
1/2 to 3/4 c italian dressing

Combine pasta with other ingredients.  Toss with dressing.  Allow to chill one hour before serving.

Cornbread Salad (makes LOTS! - about 20 side dish servings)
1 8 ox pkg corn bread/muffin mix
2 cans corn, drained
2 cans pinto beans, rinsed and drained
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
3 tomatoes, chopped
1 each green and red bell pepper, diced
10 bacon strips, cooked and crumbled
8 oz shredded cheddar cheese

1 c sour cream
1 c mayo
1 envelope ranch salad dressing mix

Cook muffin mix according to package directions.  Cool and then crumble.  In a large bowl, combine all salad ingredients.  In a small bowl, combine dressing ingredients and then right before serving, pour dressing over salad and toss.

Grandma's Chicken Fruit Salad
3 chicken breasts cooked, cooled and diced OR popcorn chicken, cooked and cooled
1 head lettuce, torn into bite size pieces
3 c grapes
3 c cantaloupe chunks
1 can pineapple chunks, drained but reserve the juice
1 can olives, drained and cut in half

1 c mayo
Pineapple juice

Toss all salad ingredients together.  In a small bowl, slowly add pineapple juice while stirring until dressing reaches desired consistency. Toss with salad.

My favorite baked bean recipe to take to bbq's is in the Crockpot section: Beans and Sausage - YUM!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Spring into Summer Salads

I don't know about you but the first time it hits 75 and is sunny outside, I am so ready to be done with soups and casseroles - it's SALAD time! Many of these can be served as main dish salads with just a bread item and maybe some fruit.  Others are great as side salads - its all up to you!  One of our favorite things to do is have 3 or 4 side salads for dinner!

Summer Chicken Salad

2 c leaf lettuce or spinach
2 cans mandarin oranges, drained
1 c cooked chicken, cubed
1 can sliced olives, drained
1 bunch grapes, halved
3 ribs, celery, chopped
1/2 c slivered almonds
1 can pineapple tidbits, drained well
2 c cooked pasta
      Toss well and then toss again with dressing
1 c mayo or plain yogurt
3 T vinegar
3 T sugar
1 1/2 T soy sauce
1/4 t ground ginger

Cheese Tortellini Salad

1/2 lb cheese tortellini, cooked according to package directions and drained
2 T oil
3/4 c celery, diced
1 red or yellow sweet pepper, diced
1 small jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained and chopped (reserve marinade)
4 Roma tomatoes
1/2 c mayo
1/2 c plain yogurt
2 T lemon juice
1 T dried basil

Toss drained pasta with oil.  Add vegetables and toss. Combine mayo, yogurt, reserved marinade, lemon juice and basil.  Pour over salad ingredients and toss.  Chill for at least an hour before serving.

Sesame Chicken Pasta Salad

8 oz pasta, cooked and drained
3 c chopped chicken breast
2 c torn fresh spinach
      Toss together.
1/4 c soy sauce
1/3 c vinegar
2 T oil
2 T sugar
2 T sesame seeds
1/2 t salt and pepper
    Mix together well and toss with salad.  Serve immediately

Shauna's Pasta Salad

1 16 oz package desired pasta, cooked and drained
2 c grapes
1 c celery
2 c cooked and chopped chicken
1/2 c almonds OR 1 c cashews
1 can crushed pineapple undrained
a small bottle coleslaw dressing
1 c mayo

Mix mayo with dressing, reserving about 1 cup.  Toss all other ingredients together and then stir in dressing mixture.  Refrigerate for one hour.  Before serving, toss with reserved dressing mixture.

Mom's 24 Hour Layered Salad

1 head lettuce, washed and drained well, torn into bite size pieces
1/4 onion, finely diced
3 ribs celery, diced
1 cup frozen petite peas
1 can sliced water chestnuts, drained
2 c mayo
3 T parmesan cheese
1 T sugar
1 c shredded cheddar or swiss cheese
3 hard boiled eggs, sliced
1 package real bacon bits
2 tomatoes, chopped

In a 9x13 pan, layer: lettuce, onion, celery, peas, water chestnuts.  Mix mayo,  parmesan cheese and sugar together well and cover water chestnut layer.  Cover and refrigerate for at least 8 hours and up to 24.  Right before serving, sprinkle with shredded cheese, hard boiled eggs, bacon and tomatoes.

Cauliflower Pea Salad

1 head cauliflower, washed and broken into very small pieces
2 c peas (if using frozen, thaw them first) fresh would be yummy!
1 c cashew halves
bottled ranch or bleu cheese dressing

Combine, chill and serve.

Almost as good as KFC's Coleslaw

1 bag coleslaw mix OR 1/2 head of cabbage plus 2 carrots finely grated
1 apple, grated

4 T mayo
2 T red wine vinegar
1 1/2 T sugar
salt and pepper to taste

Combine dressing with salad ingredients and chill for at least one hour before serving

Creamy Cookie Salad - yes, cookies and salad

2 c buttermilk
2 3oz pkg instant vanilla pudding
1 16 oz tub whipped topping
2 cans mandarin oranges, drained
1 11oz pkg fudge striped cookies, broken into bite size pieces

Beat together buttermilk and pudding.  Stir in whipped topping and oranges.  Stir in cookies.  Chill and serve.

Cotton Candy Salad

1 can cherry pie filling
1 can sweetened condensed milk (I use fat free)
1 16 oz tub whipped topping
1 small pkg mini marshmallows
2 cans drained mandarin oranges

Stir cherry pie filling and sweetened condensed milk together well.  Then stir in oranges and marshmallows.  Fold in whipped topping and chill for at least 2 hours before serving.  Not only does it look like cotton candy - it tastes like it too!  And it can be made fat free - not sugar or calorie free but fat free!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Easy and Low-Fat Desserts (yes, it is possible)

Recently I had to make some changes to my eating habits.  That is extremely hard for a "foodie" like me but since my health pretty much depended on it, I've managed.  Now I am on an extremely low-fat eating plan and I am seriously missing all the "good" stuff.  I thought that I cooked fairly low-fat before but apparently not enough.  Sooooo in an effort to fill my life and tummy with tasty things, I have reinvented some of my absolute favorites.  The first posting will be DESSERTS - because it's always good to start with dessert first, right?

Black Forest Trifle (approx 1 gram of fat per serving)

       1 family size Betty Crocker Brownie mix
       1/3 c water
       1/3 c applesauce
       2 eggs

Mix together and bake in a sprayed 9 x 13 pan for the time directed on the package. Allow to cool and cut into small squares.

     1 can cherry pie filling
     1/4 t almond extract

Mix together and set aside

     Hersheys syrup

     1 small box instant chocolate milk made according to directions using SKIM milk - chill in fridge

     Lite or fat free whipped topping

Layer half of brownie squares, pudding, cherries, whipped topping and drizzle with chocolate syrup.  Repeat layers and chill for at least one hour before serving.  You seriously would NEVER suspect this is low-fat!

Lowfat "Mock" Cheesecake (the only fat is in the crust)

1 lower fat graham cracker crust
1 pkg fat free cream cheese, softened
3 T skim milk
2 t vanilla
1 c powdered sugar
1 16 oz tub fat free or lite whipped topping

Blend together cream cheese, milk, vanilla and sugar. Fold in whipped topping and put in crust.  Chill and serve with fresh fruit or pie filling (we love blueberry).

Yogurt Pie (the only fat is in the crust)

1 lower fat graham cracker crust
3 to 4 containers (6 oz size) no fat yogurt, any flavor
1 tub fat free whipped topping

Mix whipped topping and yogurt together.  Pour into crust and freeze for at least 3 hours before serving.

Cotton Candy Salad

1 can fat free sweetened condensed milk
1 can cherry pie filling
2 cans mandarin oranges,. drained
2 c mini marshmallows
1 8 oz tub fat free whipped topping

Stir milk and pie filling together.  Stir in oranges and marshmallows and then fold in whipped topping.  Chill for at least 2 hours before serving.

Okay so none of these recipes could be considered "healthy" but they are lots lower in fat than the originals and they have been lifesavers for me, especially the trifle! 

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Freezer Meals

Okay - this is my first official try at freezer meals.  I got some of these online from various sources. The others I just used recipes that I already had.  Things I learned: I went to the dollar store to buy all my foil pans.  I sprayed them well with cooking spray.  Take most everything out of your freezer and stick it in a cooler.  Then you can freeze everything nice and flat.  If you stack it, apparently it compresses and somethings may leak - not that I learned that from experience  :(  . It only takes a few hours to freeze everything enough that you can stack it.  I cooked the pasta just to al dente.  I just covered the meals with foil and wrote on the top what it was and the cooking instructions.  Others that do this often have told me to allow plenty of time for thawing!!!!!  Good luck.  Everything I snitched tastes of was delicious!!!! Oh and by the way - you don't have to freeze these recipes, you can make it and bake it the same day!!


1 pkg. pepperoni
1 lb. ground beef, browned and drained
1 pkg. cooked egg noodles
1 can drained sliced olives
1 small can mushrooms, drained (optional)
1 can cheddar cheese soup
1 jar pizza sauce
2 cups mozzarella cheese
Salt and pepper to taste

Add all of the ingredients together except for the mozzarella cheese. Sprinkle it on the top of the casserole. Put in a sprayed foil deep lasagna pan and freeze.  Thaw all day. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes. 

Mexi Beef Casserole Freezer Recipe

1 pound ground beef
1 15-oz can sweet corn, drained
1 cup mild, chunky salsa
1/4 cup sliced black olives
1 pkg cooked egg noodles
1 15-oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
1/4 cup taco sauce
1 package taco seasoning mix
1/2 cup tomato sauce

Cook egg noodles according to instructions, drain. Meanwhile, brown beef in a skillet until brown and fully cooked. Drain any grease. In a bowl, combine all ingredients, then pour into a freezer container or a 9x13 baking dish. Freeze (may want to allow it to come down to room temperature before placing in freezer)

On cooking day, thaw completely in fridge (take it out the night before or morning of). In a preheated 325F oven, cook for 30-45 minutes, or until bubbly and completely hot throughout. Serve!

Maui Wowee Chicken Freezer Recipe

4 cups cooked chicken, diced
2 cups onion, chopped
2 cup green pepper, chopped
4 14oz cans cream of chicken soup
2 cans (15 oz.) pineapple tidbits
1 tbsp. soy sauce

In frying pan, heat 1 tbsp oil then saute onion and green pepper until softened. Add chicken and heat (or cook chicken at this stage if uncooked, then dice). Add cream of chicken soup, pineapple tidbits and soy sauce. Divide into two containers, allow to cool, then freeze.

On serving day. Thaw in refrigerator, then heat in saucepan on medium heat. Serve with rice or pasta.

Caesar Chicken Casserole Freezer Recipe

2 lbs cooked chicken breasts, cut into 1/2" to 1" pieces
1/2 cup red bell pepper, chopped
1/2 cup green onions, chopped
2/3 cup light creamy caesar dressing
1 cup chicken broth
1 1/2 cups Mozzarella cheese, grated
1 12-oz package tubed pasta (such as penne or macaroni), cooked and drained
1/4 cup croutons

Combine all ingredients but croutons, mixing well, in a 2 quart baking dish. Allow to cool and freeze.

From freezer: Thaw casserole. Top with crushed croutons and bake in 350F preheated oven for 30 minutes or until topping is browned and casserole is bubbly.

Baked Spaghetti

1 lb pasta, cooked
1 lb ground beef, browned
1 chopped green pepper
1 cr of mushroom soup
1 can tomato soup
1 can tomato sauce
1 can water
2 T brown sugar
1 t salt
basil, oregano, garlic salt
1 c mozzarella cheese

Combine in a large bowl and place in a sprayed foil pan.  Freeze.  Thaw all day then bake at 350 until bubbly.

South of the Border Quiche

2 unbaked pie shells
2 t chili powder
1 t cumin
2 c grated cheese
8 eggs
2 c half and half
2 cans green chilies
2 cans sliced ripe olives
2 T fresh cilantro
½ t salt and pepper

Bake pie shells for 5 minutes at 400. Then mix all ingredients. Cover with saran wrap and freeze for up to 3 months. Remove from the freezer for 30 minutes – do not thaw. Cover edges with foil. Place on a baking sheet at 400 for 55 – 60 minutes.