Hurricane Soup

One of my favorite soups passed on from my sister Jen is her Blizzard Soup.  It’s the perfect soup when there is a blizzard headed her way. I’m all the way south in Florida and dream of a blizzard somedays, but usually all we get are hurricanes. Most of the time we all frantically rush to the store to stock up on all the pantry items that we can get our hands on. If we are lucky we have no need to dig into that stash and have a full pantry once the scare of a hurricane passes. This soup came about after our last scare. I refused to go to the store again and came up with this pasta e fagioli “Hurricane Soup”. Now this is on rotation weekly because it is cheap and easy!  Two of my favorite kind of dinners. I usually serve this with a loaf of crusty bread or garlic bread.  

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Hurricane Soup

Ingredients

  • one onion, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 can of low sodium white Northern beans and 1 can of low sodium red kidney beans(drained), or any similar beans you have in your pantry
  • 1 can (14.5 oz.) of diced tomatoes
  • a small can (8 oz.) of tomato sauce
  • 8 cups of low sodium chicken broth
  • a half a bag of baby spinach
  • two cups of pasta(I prefer a smaller pasta like ditalini, but again you can use anything you have in your pantry)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • grated cheese

Directions

  1. Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat.
  2. Saute the onion until tender.
  3. Add the garlic and saute for a minute. 
  4. Add all the rest of the ingredients except the pasta and grated cheese.
  5. Simmer for about 15 minutes.
  6. Add the pasta and cook per directions on the box.
  7. Serve in individual soup bowls and top with grated cheese.

Enjoy!

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Soup Season

 

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Ravioli Soup

If you haven’t noticed, I make a lot of soup. Soup is usually easy, quick , comforting and delicious. There are two things that are a must have in soup if you intend on feeding your family at dinner time. Meat and Pasta of course! Without them a soup is more of an appetizer than a family meal. My family can eat, so I have to be able to fill them up or I’m in trouble.

Every time I go to Trader Joe’s I make sure I pick up a bag of mini Ravioli in their pasta section. I always have them in my pantry. They are really tiny, so they are perfect for kids and soup. Feel free to use any ravioli you have on hand, just adjust the cooking time per directions on the package.

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Adapted by:  Feel Good Foodie

Ravioli Soup

Ingredients

  • Olive oil
  • 2 small onions, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 lb. of mild italian sausage(ground, out of casing)
  • 4 large tomatoes, diced or 1 can of diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup of tomato paste or crushed tomato sauce(either or will work)
  • 8 cups of water
  • 1 bag of Trader Joe’s mini ravioli(16 oz.)
  • fresh basil and parsley, chopped
  • salt and pepper
  • grated pecorino romano cheese

Directions

  1. In a large saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat.
  2. Add the onion and saute until tender.
  3. Add the garlic and saute for 1-2 minutes.
  4. Add the sausage and cook until brown. Use a wooden spoon to break it up into little pieces while it is cooking.
  5. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Add the diced tomatoes and stir.
  7. Add the tomato paste or sauce and stir, while scraping all the brown bits off the bottom of the pan.
  8. Add the water and stir.
  9. Season with salt and pepper.
  10. Simmer for about 15 minutes.
  11. Add the basil and parsley and the ravioli.
  12. Bring to a boil and cook per directions on the package.
  13. Remove from the heat and serve. Top each bowl with grated cheese.

Enjoy!

If you like this recipe, you will also like:

Feeding the Fam on a budget

Soup Season

 

Steak Salad

I used to make this salad years ago. I’m back on an arugula kick and love it! It has a spice to it that I love and can stand up to grilled steak or chicken on top. If steak is involved my boys come running. Summer is here and we have the grill going a couple of times a week. This is one of the simplest dinners you can pull together and everyone will enjoy it.  

 

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Steak Salad

Ingredients

  • Trader Joe’s BBQ Rub & Seasoning with Coffee and Garlic
  • Any thin steak of your choice(I like skirt steak or thin sliced sirloin) OR chicken breasts if you prefer.
  • 1 package of arugula
  • 1 large lemon
  • 2 tablespoons of Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • ¼ cup of Grated pecorino romano cheese

Directions

  1. Generously coat your steak(or chicken) with the Trader Joe’s seasoning. Let sit for an hour or so in the fridge.
  2. Preheat your grill and cook to your liking.
  3. Tent with aluminum and set aside while you prepare the salad.
  4. In a large bowl add the arugula, olive oil and grated cheese.
  5. Squeeze the juice from your lemon over the arugula and season with salt and pepper.
  6. Toss lightly and lay in a large, flat serving dish.
  7. Slice the steak thin and lay the pieces over the top of the salad.   

Enjoy!

If you liked this recipe, you will also like these…

Grilled Skirt Steak

Summer Boil

Uncle Joe’s Simple Salad

Smashed Potatoes

Old Fashioned Ice Cream Soda 🥤

Fill em Up!

Believe it or not, when I make salmon everyone eats it! I never have any left over. It seems like when I make it, nobody gets filled. So I usually make this orzo side dish along with it to fill them up and it is amazing! I love pasta and I love vegetables, so for me this is perfect. I eat it leftover for lunch and it could be cold right out of the container…

You can use any vegetables you have in the house, not just the ones I used! 

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Orzo Side Dish

Ingredients

  • 1 box of orzo pasta
  • EVOO
  • 1 red bell pepper chopped
  • 1/2 of an onion chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 package of mushrooms chopped
  • A bunch of tomatoes chopped
  • handful of Italian parsley
  • salt and pepper

Directions

  1. In a medium sauce pan, boil salted water and cook the orzo per directions on the package.  Drain and set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, add olive oil to a pan over low to medium heat.
  3. Add onion.  After a couple of minutes add the garlic.
  4. Toss in the bell pepper and mushrooms and saute until they are tender.
  5. Add the tomatoes and cook for a few more minutes.  Take off the heat.  Toss in the parsley and salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Put the drained orzo in the pan with all the veggies and mix together.  Top with a little grated cheese and a drizzle of olive oil.

Enjoy!

See below for other similar dishes…

Simple Side

Italian Pasta Salad

Feeding the Fam on a budget

When I was pregnant with my first son I left my teaching job. On his first birthday I found out I was pregnant with my 2nd baby. So we went from my husband and I both working and no kids, to two babies with one income in a very short period of time. That is when I started cooking a lot. I couldn’t get out too often when my boys were small so coming up with dinner for all of us gave me something to think about. Feeding the Fam on a budget was a challenge. I would get recipes from my mom, aunt and grandma because they always had great options. Once the boys got through their toddler years and actually started eating and enjoying the food I couldn’t stop! Now they love to put in their requests and critique my cooking. My boys are now 11 and 13. They are growing rapidly and eating me out of house and home. Cooking on a budget is even more of  a challenge now. I definitely buy chicken broth, canned items, olive oil and pasta when they are buy 1, get 1 free. I shop at BJ’s once a month to stock up on some meats. And I’ve started shopping at some lower priced stores like Aldi which really helps. I put together some of my favorite meals that are budget friendly. I hope this post helps you feed your fam on a budget. There is nothing like knowing you fed your whole family for less than $10 and they have full bellies and smiling faces…

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Pasta:  Need I say more? I love pasta. I love pasta for a lot of reasons.

  • There are so many different options (whole grain, rigatoni, gluten-free, spaghetti)
  • It fills everyone up.
  • It’s inexpensive!
  • Who doesn’t like pasta? Cold, hot, with veggies, as a side dish, etc…)

So here are some of my favorite budget-friendly pasta dishes…

Soup:  A bowl of comfort… So many reasons I love soup as well.

  • It’s a budget-friendly meal.
  • Super healthy
  • You can add ingredients based on your families likes and dislikes (pasta, beans, veggies, etc…)
  • Makes great leftovers.

So, here are some of my favorite budget-friendly soups you should put on your weekly rotation!

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All the other good meals that aren’t pasta or soup:  There are so many budget-friendly dinners. Honestly, when I look at all my recipes most of them are affordable. It’s never my motive to spend a fortune on dinner, holidays and celebrations not included…

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Stuffed Pepper Stir Fry

I love stuffed peppers, but it is a big job. I usually like to roast the peppers a little before I even stuff them so they are soft, otherwise my family only eats what’s in the pepper. So, all that work for them to pick around the actual pepper. Hence, the Stuffed Pepper Stir Fry! It is much easier than the traditional stuffed peppers. It is perfect for a quick weeknight dinner.

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Stuffed Pepper Stir Fry

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • Salt and Pepper
  • 2 pounds of ground Italian sausage
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 3 cups of chopped peppers (sweet bell peppers, sweet long peppers, cubanelle, etc…)
  • 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 3 cups of instant white rice
  • 3 cups of low sodium chicken broth
  • 8 oz. can of tomato sauce
  • 2 tablespoons of Italian Parsley, chopped

Directions

  1. Heat the oil in a deep saute pan.
  2. Add the sausage and brown. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Drain the sausage and set it aside.
  4. Add the peppers and onions to the pan. Season with salt and pepper. Cook until tender.
  5. Add garlic and cook for one more minute.
  6. Remove from the heat and set aside until needed.
  7. Cook your instant rice per directions on the box (use chicken broth instead of water)
  8. Combine the veggies and the sausage. Stir and reheat.
  9. Add sauce. Cook for 5 more minutes.
  10. Add parsley and remove from the heat.
  11. I like to serve it with the rice in the bottom of the bowl and top it with the Stuffed Pepper Stir Fry.

Enjoy!

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Stuffed Peppers

Shrimp with Red Beans and Rice 🍤

Sausage and Peppers

Spring Pasta

Spring is here and it’s getting hotter in Florida! When it gets hotter, the food has to get a little lighter. Instead of my pasta with meat sauce or meatballs, I like to add more veggies. One of my favorite side dishes of all time is peas and onions. When I have no fresh veggies in my fridge that is my go to. Sometimes I add it to pasta or rice and it is delicious. I took my fav, peas and onions and added a lot of other great ingredients and tossed it with pasta. OMG. This dish is really tasty and one of my family’s favorite meals.

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I cook dinner almost every night. There are a few items that I can not live without.

  1. Large Pot:  I use this to boil pasta or to make sauce and soup.
  2. Saute Pan:  I use this to saute veggies and make a quick crushed tomato sauce.
  3. Wooden Spoons:  I can’t get enough of these…

 

Spring Pasta

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 package of mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 onion sliced thin
  • 4 oz. package of diced pancetta
  • Splash of low sodium chicken broth
  • 1 bag of frozen baby sweet peas
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 pounds of pasta (I prefer shells or bowties)
  • Grated pecorino romano cheese

Directions

  1. Heat olive oil over medium heat in a deep saute pan.
  2. Add mushrooms and onions and cook until all the juices from the mushrooms evaporate and the mushrooms and onions are browning.
  3. Add pancetta and cook for about 5 minutes.
  4. Remove from the heat and add the chicken broth. Scrape the pan with a wooden spoon.  
  5. Return to the heat and add the peas. Season with salt and pepper. Cook until peas are heated through.
  6. Set aside.
  7. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta according to directions on the box. Save some pasta water if needed to moisten the pasta in the end.  
  8. Combine the veggies and the pasta.
  9. Drizzle with olive oil and top with grated pecorino romano.

If this recipe is your kind of meal, you will also enjoy…

Mini Tortellini, Sausage and Spinach

Poolside Pasta Primavera

Bowties with Broccoli

Orecchiette with Sausage, Mushrooms, and Tomatoes