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WHOLE WHEAT PIZZA CRUST

Pizza Made Easy

Whenever I get asked what my favorite foods are, pizza is at the top of my list with tacos being a close second. There are so many options for pizza that I could write it into my meal plan several times in one week and not get tired of eating it. When I have a hankering for a slice (or two!), especially for lunch, Pizza Boats are a quick way for me to satisfy that craving.

chopping food on a cutting board

No Heat Required!

Last week Justine shared a number of recipes that don’t require any chopping. This week I’d like to share some recipes that don’t require any cooking. Sometimes it’s nice to have a recipe that uses minimal equipment and no heat required!

microwave

The microwave is singing!

Occasionally I need recipes that require minimal time, effort, and equipment. I love cooking and making big meals for my family. But with both of our kids in activities during the week, sometimes a meal or a snack that can be made in the microwave is the way to go. My kids enjoy that our microwave is low enough in our pantry for them to help. My preschooler can practice her numbers by helping me use it for cooking, and when the timer ends it sings a little jingle which my toddler loves to dance to. Using the microwave throughout the day is a win for everyone at my house!

cutting board with a knife on it

No Chopping, No Problem!

Last week I shared our April recipe of the month – Coleslaw Pasta Salad. It is a unique salad recipe because it does not have any chopping, so a knife is not needed. This week I would like to share some other Spend Smart. Eat Smart. recipes that do not need a knife to prepare. Since I have already shared a salad, I have chosen recipes from other categories below.

Coleslaw Pasta Salad

Coleslaw Pasta Salad

Welcome to April! Today is April Fools’ Day and, though I am not very good at coming up with tricks for today, my children played a pretty good one on their dad last year. They made him a tall glass of juice, except it was not juice, it was Jell-O. So, when he tried to take a drink, the juice was stuck in the glass. This does not really have anything to do with our April recipe of the month, Coleslaw Pasta Salad, except that I have been thinking a lot about different ways to involve my children in making meals and snacks at home.

minestrone soup

Minestrone Soup

Welcome to December! December is usually a very busy month for me. At work we tend to have some bigger meetings and deadlines. My children have music concerts, indoor sports, and parties to attend. My husband and I have our own social events to add in. Most importantly, we have a very special birthday in December – our youngest turns 8 this year. Just thinking about all this makes me want to forget about planning and making meals.

overnight oats

The Breakfast that Makes Itself!

I am not the biggest fan of warm oatmeal. I never seem to get the consistency right making it either too runny or too dry. Though I don’t like traditional oatmeal, I do love using old fashioned and quick oats when I bake. Over the years I have found that my container of oats sometimes sits in the kitchen cabinet untouched for months. Cue Overnight Oats! This is a great breakfast option that uses oats as one of the star ingredients. Not only do I get to use an item in my kitchen that would normally sit on the shelf (sometimes past its prime), but I also have a nutritious breakfast that I can grab and go when I am in a bit of a rush.

snacks in bowls

Make Ahead Snacks

This month has been all about snacks here on the blog. Snacks are also a must at my house to keep my 10-year-old daughter and 13-year-old son full between meals. My son often tells me we don’t have any good snacks in the house. Therefore, I’ve been thinking about how I can balance my desire for him to have a nutritious snack and his desire for something more fun than what I usually keep on hand.

HOMEMADE APPLESAUCE in a bowl

“Mom, I’m hungry!”

As a mom of two young kids, it seems like I spend most of my day preparing meals and snacks. Now that my oldest is back at preschool, having planned snacks during the week saves me a lot of time when we are running to and from activities. I love snacks that can be thrown together quickly and are easy to transport wherever we find ourselves throughout the day.

bags of frozen vegetables in freezer

Dinnertime Shortcuts

All of a sudden it is time to go back to school and routines are changing for many of us. Schedules get a little busier and we have less time to cook. The temptation to grab takeout is definitely there, but we can save money and make more nutritious choices by using some shortcuts at home instead.

grocery store aisle

Meals from a Dollar Store

In my home state of Iowa, there are a lot of us who have a significant drive to get to a big grocery store with a wide variety of food. Trips into larger cities take time and money for transportation. In small towns and certain areas of larger cities, we are more likely to find a dollar store that sells a variety of items including some food. Most dollar stores have shelf-stable foods and some have refrigerated or frozen foods too. I gave some thought to what I could make with the shelf-stable foods my local dollar store carries. Here are some of the products that stood out to me as particularly useful and how I would make them into a meal.