Category Archives: Recipes

There are many ways to save money on your grocery budget. You can keep track of sales and purchase items at a discount. You can buy in bulk and you can grow your own food. Another way to save money is to make your own mixes. Not only are these mixes easier on your wallet but they can also be much better for you. Many seasoning packets and mixes are full of MSG and other additives, things our bodies just don’t need. Here are a few recipes for you to adapt in your kitchen.

Homemade Rice Seasoning Mix


¾ cup chicken bouillon granules
½ cup dried parsley
1 tbsp. basil
1 tbsp dill weed
2 tbsp, dried onion flakes
1 tsp seasoning salt
2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp lemon pepper seasoning
1 cup almonds, coarsely chopped (optional)

Mix together and store in an airtight container. When preparing rice, combine 1 cup rice, 2 cups water, and three tablespoons of the seasoning. Bring your water to a boil and add rice & seasoning. Reduce to simmer and cook for eighteen minutes.

Homemade Baking Mix (AKA Bisquick)


5 ½ cups sifted flour
1 tsp baking soda
3 tbsp baking powder
1 cup shortening

Mix all ingredients well until crumbly. Store in an air tight container.

Homemade Shake & Bake


4 cups flour
4 cups ground inexpensive crackers
4 tbsp salt
2 tbsp sugar
2 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp onion powder
3 tbsp paprika
¼ cup vegetable oil

Mix well and store indefinitely in the refrigerator in a covered container.

Before moving to Vermont I used to make our own homemade pancake syrup. It was much tastier than the products I could find in the store and we rather enjoyed it. It’s no where near as good as real maple syrup but not a bad replacement.

Homemade Pancake Syrup


3 cups granulated sugar
1 ½ cups water
3 tbsp molasses
1 tsp vanilla
2 tsp butter flavoring
1 tsp maple extract

Bring all of the ingredients to a boil, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Turn off burner, but leave pot on burner until the bubbling stops.


A dear friend I met while living in Florida shared today’s recipe. She and I had the same birthday and she was like a surrogate grandparent to our children while living so far from family. Needless to say she is a very special person in my life and this is a delicious simple recipe.

milk sponge cake, homemade

Simple ingredients for a delicious cake!


1 Cup all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
½ cup milk
2 eggs
2 Tbsp butter
1 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla

Sift together flour, baking powder and salt. Heat milk and butter until butter melts. Beat eggs until thick and lemon colored, about 3 minutes on high speed if using an electric mixer. Gradually add the sugar while continuing to beat for 4-6 minutes. Add sifted dry ingredients to egg mixture; stir just until blended. Stir in hot milk mixture and vanilla; blend well. Pour into a greased and floured 9×9 pan.

homemade cake, milk sponge cake

Pour batter into a greased and floured pan.

Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes. Cool in pan.

Excellent for shortcake with fruit, use with a sauce or very good plain!

cake, home cooking

Enjoy a pice plain, it’s so good!

homemade cake, prudent living

Cake right out of the oven.








Linked To: TheInspirationNetwork

Having a well-stocked pantry can help you in so many ways, mostly in saving you money. Did you know that having a well-stocked pantry can also help the environment? By having certain ingredients on hand you can make your own cleaners and help the environment by having less environmental pollutants from cleaning and personal care products washed down the drain and into our water system. Baking soda is something that not only has uses in baking but it can be used in other ways around the house.baking soda, homemade cleaners

1. Did you know you can make a toothpaste from baking soda? Make a paste from baking soda and 3% hydrogen peroxide; this can be used in place of commercial toothpaste. You can also just tip your toothbrush in baking soda for an extra boost. If you’d rather have a minty version try this recipe, this is a simple, inexpensive, odor-eliminating, tooth-whitening, and very effective formula from Organic Body Care Recipes (Storey, 2007) By Stephanie Tourles.


1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon sea salt, finely ground
1 drop peppermint, spearmint, sweet orange, clove, or cinnamon bark essential oil
A few drops tap water

Combine ingredients in a small bowl and mix them thoroughly with a toothbrush, your finger, or a small spoon until a smooth, thick paste forms. The paste shouldn’t be too runny; it has to stay on your toothbrush. Dip your toothbrush into the paste and use as you would regular commercial toothpaste.

2. Help Your Hair –  Vinegar is amazing for your hair, but baking soda has its place in the shower too. Sprinkle a small amount of baking soda into your palm along with your favorite shampoo. Shampoo as usual and rinse thoroughly–baking soda helps remove the residue that styling products leave behind so your hair is cleaner and more manageable.

3. Clean Brushes and Combs – For lustrous hair with more shine, keep brushes and combs clean. Remove natural oil build-up and hair product residue by soaking combs and brushes in a solution of 1 teaspoon of baking soda in a small basin of warm water. Rinse and allow to dry.

4. Clean the Microwave – Baking soda on a clean damp sponge cleans gently inside and outside the microwave and never leaves a harsh chemical smell. Rinse well with water.

5. Clean Floors – Remove dirt and grime (without unwanted scratch marks) from no wax and tile floors using 1/2 cup baking soda in a bucket of warm water–mop and rinse clean for a sparkling floor. For scuffmarks, use baking soda on a clean damp sponge, then rinse.household helps, cleaning, prudent living

6. Deodorize Your Refrigerator – Place an open box in the back of the fridge to neutralize odors.

7. Deodorize and Clean Dishwashers – Use Baking soda to deodorize before you run the dishwasher and then as a gentle cleanser in the wash cycle.

8. Extinguish Fires – Baking soda can help in the initial handling of minor grease or electrical kitchen fires, because when baking soda is heated, it gives off carbon dioxide, which helps to smother the flames. For small cooking fires (frying pans, broilers, ovens, grills), turn off the gas or electricity if you can safely do so. Stand back and throw handfuls of baking soda at the base of the flame to help put out the fire–and call the Fire Department just to be safe.

9. Deodorize Sneakers – Keep odors from spreading in smelly sneakers by shaking baking soda into them when not in use. Shake out before wearing.

10. Camping Cure-all – Baking soda is a must-have for your next camping trip. Its a dish washer, pot scrubber, hand cleanser, deodorant, toothpaste, fire extinguisher and many other uses.

As you can see Baking Soda has numerous uses, definitely an item you want to have in your pantry!cleaning, laundry, baking, prudent living


I debated which recipe to write about today as I have two wonderful recipes for using up leftover turkey or chicken. Since we weren’t home for Thanksgiving we had turkey for our Christmas meal just so we could have leftovers! One of the recipes I love is Turkey Curry, which indeed we had last night. However I didn’t take a single picture so I’ll have to share that recipe another time. I made a delicious turkey stock with the last bits of the turkey and the recipe I am going to share was one given to me several years ago. Hopefully they won’t mind my sharing with you! It’s the best Turkey/Chicken Soup recipe I’ve ever had!

Turkey Victoria

3 Tbsp butter
1 celery stalk, diced
1 carrot, diced
1 medium onion, diced
1 ½ cups mushrooms, sliced (baby bella if possible)- optional
2 cups turkey broth
1 ½ cups diced cooked turkey/chicken meat
3 Tbsp flour
¼ cups cold water
1 Tbsp tarragon leaves
1 tsp basil
½ tsp rosemary
½ tsp thyme
1 tsp onion salt
1 tsp celery salt
1 ½ cups light cream

In a soup pot, melt butter; sauté the next four ingredients.

saute, vegetables, carrots, celery, onions

Saute vegetables before adding broth.

onions, carrots, celery

Onions, carrots and celery chopped and ready to be added to the soup pot.


Add broth and turkey/chicken; simmer for 15 minutes. In a small bowl, mix flour and water; add to soup and stir until thickened. Season with the spices.celery salt, tarragon, rosemary, spices Continue to simmer over low heat, adding 1 ½ cups light cream.

Serves 6

soup, homemade soup

Turkey soup, perfect for a cold, snowy day.


I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas weekend. I feel like I’m still on vacation, after all our boys are home from college and they are enjoying time off. It also feels like a Monday when it really is Tuesday. It’s a lazy morning here, the boys are still asleep as I write and the dogs are crashed in front of the wood stove.

dog, woodstove, Boston Terrier

Riley crashed on the other side of the wood stove.

dog, pug, woodstove

Purtie crashed in front of the wood stove.

However for me it’s back to work. With our boys home we go through food much quicker, the bread and milk seem to disappear overnight! I make my own bread and no one prefers store bought so when we’re out of bread it’s time to make more! A friend of mine shared a fabulous no fail bread recipe with me years ago.

recipes, bread, well loved

My well worn original recipe!

I’ve made a few changes but basically haven’t changed it much. I grind my own hard white wheat berries and usually add a little King Arthur bread flour.

wheat grinder, wondermill, prudent living

My WonderMill wheat grinder.

I also use my Kitchen Aid to mix the dough.

homemade bread, mixer, bread dough

Mix dough until it pulls together.

homemade bread, bread dough

Using a mixer to mix the bread dough.

This morning we were out of bread so before the boys get up I’ve got a batch of bread dough made and rising. Should be ready in time for lunch.

bread, bread dough

Let dough rise about an hour before forming into loaves.

Here is the recipe that was shared with me; I hope you enjoy it as much as my family does!

Nancy’s No Knead Bread

4 cups all-purpose flour*
¼ cup sugar
1 ½ tsp salt
1 pkg active dry yeast
¾ cup water
½ cup milk
¼ cup butter
1 egg

In a large bowl blend 2 cups flour, sugar, salt and yeast. In saucepan, heat water, milk and butter until very warm (120-130 degrees F). Butter does not need to melt. Add warm liquid and egg to flour mixture. Beat 4 minutes at medium speed. By hand, stir in remaining flour to make a soft dough. Cover and let rise in a warm place until light and doubled in size. It usually takes 45-60 minutes.

Stir down dough. On a floured surface, form dough into a loaf and place in a greased loaf pan. Cover and let rise in a warm place until light and doubled in size.

homemade bread, loaves

Dough formed into loaves, ready to rise again.

making bread, bread dough

I roll out the dough before forming loaves.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake 30-35 minutes or until golden brow. Can brush with melted butter. Serve warm or cool. Makes one large loaf or two smaller loaves. Freezes well.

bread, whole wheat, homemade

We usually keep one loaf to eat and freeze the other two.

*I usually double this recipe to make three large loaves. I use 4 cups of freshly ground flour and 4 cups of King Arthur Bread Flour.


I found this recipe on the back of a package of York Peppermint Patties. It is a wonderful recipe! Enjoy and have a Merry Christmas!

candy, homemade gifts, browniesYork Sensational Brownies

1 ½ cup butter, melted
3 cups sugar
1 Tbsp vanilla
5 eggs
2 cups flour
1 cup Hershey’s cocoa
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
24 small (1 ½”) peppermint patties, unwrapped

Preheat oven to 350. Grease a 13x9x2” baking pan. Whisk together butter, sugar and vanilla. Add eggs. Stir in flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt. Reserve 2 cups of the batter. Spread remaining batter in prepared pan.

brownie mix, homemade

Reserve 2 cups of batter, spread the rest in your pan.

Arrange peppermint patties in a single layer over the batter, about ½” apart.

candy, peppermint patties

Spread the peppermint patties over the batter.

Spread reserved 2 cups of batter over the patties.

brownies, homemade, peppermint patties

Spread reserved batter over the peppermint patties.

Bake for 50-55 minutes, or until the brownies begin to pull away from the sides of the pan. Cool completely and cut into squares. Absolutely delicious!

Linked to: TheInspirationNetwork

brownie, peppermint, homemade

The brownie my husband ate for breakfast so I could get this picture!

brownies, homemade, delicious

Brownies hot from the oven.

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