Category Archives: Recipes

When you compare the prices of cleaning products in the stores with the cost of making them at home you’d be surprised at how much you can really save! If you were to add up the toilet cleaner, kitchen cleaner, window cleaner etc. it seems the average clean household requires close to $150 worth of chemical supplies at all times. You can switch to the healthier alternatives sold in the stores but they are also expensive. The best choice for your budget and your health is to make them yourself.

One of the first products I began to make myself was a window cleaner. A good friend shared her recipe years ago and I’ve been using it ever since! With just several basic products you probably already have in your home you can make a window cleaner that really does get your windows clean! In researching various homemade window cleaners I found there are two main recipes; one uses vinegar and the other ammonia. I’ve been using the one with ammonia, I’ll have to make both and compare!

Window Cleaner #1: This can be made right in your spray bottle. Mix ½ tsp dish detergent, 3 Tbsp vinegar and 2 cups of water. Shake it up and use like any commercial variety.

Window Cleaner #2: This can also be made in your spray bottle. Combine 3 Tbsp ammonia, 1 Tbsp vinegar and fill the rest of the way up with water.

Let me know which one you think is better! Or do you have your own unique recipe?

A good all purpose cleaner:
16oz spray bottle
2 Tbsp distilled vinegar
1 tsp borax
water (if you have hard water this needs to be distilled or purified water, otherwise use tap water)
2 Tbsp mild liquid dish soap

Mix the vinegar and borax with 1 cup of hot water until dissolved. Let the mixture cool and then pour into your spray bottle. Add enough water to the bottle leaving just enough room for your dishwashing detergent. Then add the liquid soap.

Next  weeks frugal tip will be making your own laundry detergent! Stay tuned!

ammonium, vinegar, cleaners

Ingredients to make household cleaners!

This recipe has been in our family for years and years. Originally a neighbor shared it with my mom and she’s been making it ever since. When I left home it was one of my mom’s recipes that I brought with me! The recipe is very simple and you can make the basic recipe as is or add more ingredients if you want. Use any kind of nuts, I’ve made it with walnuts, pecans and sliced almonds. All are delicious. Once the granola is cooled completely you can also add a variety of dried fruits; cherries, cranberries and raisins. This recipe is easy, inexpensive, very flexible and tastes much better than anything you can find in the supermarket!

6 cups of quick or old fashioned oats, uncooked
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
3/4 cup wheat germ
1/2 cup flaked or shredded coconut
1/3 cup sesame seed
1 cup chopped nuts
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup honey
1-1/2 teaspoon vanilla (optional)

Heat oats in ungreased 9 x 13 pan in 350 degree oven for ten minutes.

Combine oats, wheat germ, coconut, sesame seed and chopped nuts and stir. Combine brown sugar, vegetable oil, honey and vanilla. Pour over dry ingredients and stir until coated.

Divide mixture in half. Bake half in ungreased 9 x 13 pan at 350 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes, stirring often to brown evenly. Cool. Repeat for other half, don’t let it get too brown or it will burn!

Store in an airtight container.

Linked To: GooseberryPatch

I love homemade gifts! As the holidays approach I try to think of gifts that I can make myself that might bless others. One favorite idea is homemade gift jars. You can fill jars with all sorts of gift ideas – cookie mixes, brownie mixes, or soup mixes. One of my favorites is a Minestrone Soup Mix. It makes four gift packages and when presented in a jar with a cute tag makes a wonderful gift. Most of the ingredients you probably have on hand in your pantry.

Minestrone Soup Mix

Flavoring Mix;
½ cup dried onion flakes
½ cup dried celery flakes
¼ cup dried parsley flakes
2 Tbsp basil
1 Tbsp dried oregano
1 Tbsp dried marjoram
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp pepper

½ cup beef-flavored bouillon granules
1 pound dried navy beans
1 pound dried kidney beans
2 cups elbow macaroni, uncooked

Combine the first 8 ingredients and divide evenly into 4 gift packages. Add 2 Tbsp of the beef flavored bouillon granules to each package. Label and seal.  Combine navy beans and kidney beans and divide into 4 gift packages. Label and seal. Place ½ cup of macaroni into 4 gift packages. Label and seal

Present one package of herb mix, one package of bean mix and one package of macaroni with a copy of the recipe for Minestrone Soup. You can layer the ingredients  in a jar or decorate a brown bag and include the ingredients in the bag. To each jar or bag attach the following recipe:

Minestrone Soup

1 pkg of bean mix
3 quarts of water
1 pkg herb mix
1 carrot, chopped
2/3 (4oz) of chopped lean cooked ham
1 (14.5oz) can stewed tomatoes, undrained
1 pkg macaroni

Sort and wash beans; place in a Dutch oven and cover with water, two inches above the beans. Soak for 8 hours. Drain beans; add 3 quarts of water, herb mix, carrot and ham. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer for two hours, stirring occasionally, until the beans are tender. Add tomatoes and macaroni, cook 20 minutes or until macaroni is tender. Serve hot.

We have company coming this weekend and what better recipe to share today than my Overnight Coffee Cake. This recipe can be made ahead and just popped in the oven when you get up in the morning, it can also be cooked immediately. I love to make it the night before. Then when you are busy making breakfast you can just place it in the oven and it will be ready in thirty minutes. This is a family favorite!

2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1 cup buttermilk
2/3 cup butter, melted
2 large eggs

Topping Mixture:

1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup chopped pecans (or other favorite nuts)
1 tsp cinnamon

Combine first 7 ingredients, add buttermilk, butter and eggs.  Beat at low speed until moistened, beat at medium speed 2 minutes. Spoon batter into a greased and floured 13 x 9 x 2 inch pan. (I just spray with non stick cooking spray).

Combine 1/2 cup brown sugar, pecans and 1 tsp cinnamon (topping mixture). Sprinkle over batter. * Cover and refrigerate 8 – 12 hours. Uncover and bake 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes. Serve warm.

*Can bake immediately 350 degrees for 30 minutes. To reheat cover with foil and bake 350 degrees for five minutes.

Linked to: Yummy Inspirations, FlourMeWithLove, FoodieFriendsFriday, GooseberryPatch

 



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