Saturday, March 31, 2012

Recipe Round-up (Meijer Ad 4/1/12 - 4/7/12)

Wow, where do I start?  The sale ad this week is huge, and includes lots of great ingredients.  I think I could make a month's worth of meals out of what's on sale this week!  So, here we go...some "old" recipes that use on-sale ingredients from Meijer (sale ad 4/1/12-4/7/12).

Pioneer Woman's Chocolate Sheet Cake

(This recipe was first posted in conjunction with the Meijer Ad Week of 4/1/12 - 4/7/12)

The good-quality cocoa powder is on sale this week.  So is real butter.  And powdered sugar.  So what's a chocolate-loving girl to do but make The Best Chocolate Sheet Cake.  Ever.?  The ingredients for this humongous cake are basic, but the combination of those ingredients is delicious!  Two years ago, this was the first recipe I tried from the Pioneer Woman, and I was suitably impressed.  This cake definitely lives up to its name!  I won't lie and say it comes together in a snap, because there are quite a few steps involved (most notably, cooking two different buttery chocolate mixtures on the stovetop).  But the melt-in-your-mouth result makes it all worth it! 

Snowtop Ham Casserole

(This recipe was first posted in conjunction with the Meijer Ad Week of 4/1/12 - 4/7/12)

Many cooks will serve up delicious ham and mashed potatoes on Easter Sunday.  And when dinner is over, they'll look at all the leftovers and wonder what to do with them!  Fear not, cooks, and wonder no more!  We like this casserole so much that I often make extra mashed potatoes just to make sure that I'll have enough leftovers.

Iowa Corn

(This recipe was first posted in conjunction with the Meijer Ad Week of 4/1/12 - 4/7/12)

I hesitate to call this "creamed corn" because so many of you were scarred for life after eating the canned stuff as a child.  I never had the pleasure of sampling it when I was younger, so to me, the words "creamed corn" mean this delicious, homemade version.  A word of warning:  any health benefits derived from the corn itself are most definitely crowded out by the rich and creamy sauce.  But sometimes, you just gotta go for broke!  And besides, if you don't end up liking this recipe, you've only wasted five minutes of your time throwing it together.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Easy Weekend Meal: Baked Sandwiches

Need an easy meal this weekend?  Check out these delicious, easy baked sandwiches, from Andrea at Simple Organized Living.  I've made these sandwiches multiple times and I get requests for the recipe each time.  The sandwiches are made on brown-n-serve rolls* (on sale at Meijer this week for 99 cents), topped with a yummy sauce, and then baked until the tops get slightly crispy.  You can use any variety of deli meat and cheese you happen to have in the house, and you only need to get one measuring spoon dirty when you make the sauce (measure the dry ingredients first, then the moist ones).  I hope you like these sandwiches as much as we do!

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Waste Not, Want Not: Menu-planning With Food Scraps

This week's recipes fit nicely with the concept of using up leftovers.  The recipes practically speak for themselves, but I guess part of my job is to speak for the recipes :)

Monday, March 26, 2012

Reader's Request: Lunch Food for Adults...Beyond Ham and Cheese

One of the easiest ways to save money on food is to pack your husband a lunch

OK, never mind, it's not easy.  It takes planning, time, and energy.  But I can make my husband a chicken wrap for less than $1.00, as opposed to him spending $6.00 on basically the same chicken wrap at Applebees, or send along an Italian roast beef sandwich and chips for $1.25, as opposed to him picking up a burger and fries for $5.00.  I think you'll agree that the savings is worth the planning, time, and energy involved in making his lunch!  Not only does packing a lunch save money, but it's usually healthier to eat food from home rather than going out to eat all the time. 

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Recipe Round-up (Meijer Ad 3/25/12 - 3/31/12)

Need a little more inspiration for your menu plan this week? Here are some "old" recipes that use on-sale ingredients from Meijer (sale ad 3/25/12 - 3/31/12).

Vegetable Beef Soup

(This recipe was originally posted in conjunction with the Meijer Ad Week of 3/25/12 - 3/31/12)

Here in West Michigan, many of us have beef roast for Sunday dinner.  Everyone has their favorite way of cooking it, so I'm not here to tell you how to cook your roast!  But here's a way to use up your leftover roast (assuming you have any!).  Get out your biggest stock pot, because this soup recipe feeds a small army!

Chicken Bachina Hot Dish

(This recipe was originally posted in conjunction with the Meijer Ad Week of 3/25/12 - 3/31/12)

I was never a big fan of chicken broccoli casserole until I tried this version.  Now I'm sold on it...and I hope you will be too!

Chocolate Dream Cake

(This recipe was originally posted in conjunction with the Meijer Ad Week of 3/25/12 - 3/31/12)

This cake is soooo yummy.  The name is just something I made up, because no one really knows what it's called!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Money-Saving Menu-Planning

Need some helpful tips on menu-planning?  Head over to Money Saving Mom to read my guest post!  I'm super excited that they chose to publish my article on Money-Saving Menu-Planning!

While you're there, check out Crystal's series of articles entitled 31 Days to a Better Grocery Budget.  She has tons of great suggestions and information in those posts, as well as on the rest of her site.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Before and After: California Pantry

Please note:  Pictures and back story are posted with Marie's permission.  Thanks, Marie!

In January, my husband and I visited his sister and her family (husband and adorable daughter!) in California.  While we were there, we helped them with a few home improvement projects.  One of those projects was Marie's pantry. 

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Recipe Round-up (Meijer Ad 3/18/12 - 3/24/12)

Need a little more inspiration for your menu plan this week? Here are some "old" recipes that use on-sale ingredients from Meijer (sale ad 3/18/12 - 3/24/12). 

Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

This version of the chocolate chip cookie is my family's new favorite.  If you love chewy cookies, then this recipe is for you!  They're perfectly chewy and delicious, and they stay that way even if you don't refrigerate them.  There's really only ONE ingredient from the recipe on sale this week (ad week 3/18/12-3/24/12 ~ flour - $1.59/5 lb bag), but I just couldn't wait to share this recipe any longer!  That, and, well, Meijer just didn't give me much to work with this week.

Warm Fruit Salad

(This recipe was first posted in conjunction with Meijer Ad Week of 3/18/12 - 3/24/12)

Here's another "meal brought to us after we had a baby" recipe.  It's also another "dump and go" recipe that takes only minutes to put together!  It makes a huge batch, so it's perfect for taking to potlucks.

Cowboy Burgers

(This recipe was first posted in conjunction with Meijer Ad Week of 3/18/12 - 3/24/12)

I got brave this weekend and tried mixing some canned beans into our hamburger patties.  They're a little more of a pain to grill (they crumble a little easier), but it's an easy way to stretch a pound of beef into 6 large burgers...and we thought they tasted great!  If you prefer no beans, just use regular hamburger patties with this yummy combination of toppings.

Thursday, March 15, 2012


Is it worth your time to shop at more than one store for your grocery and household items?

It was worth it for me this week!

All of the men's products in the picture above (two body washes and four antiperspirant/deoderants) set me back a grand total of 41 cents. Yup, six toiletry items for 41 cents. And it didn't take me very long to find the deal, print the coupons, and stop at Walgreens (I'm estimating about 20 minutes total).

Joel's Marinated Chicken

(This recipe was first posted in conjunction with Meijer Ad Week 3/11/12 - 3/17/12)

Introducing.......  The.  Best.  Chicken.  Ever!  I've been waiting for warmer weather to share this grilled chicken recipe...and did you see the forecast for next week?  Time to fire up the grills here in West Michigan!  My uncle and aunt served this grilled chicken at our couples' wedding shower years ago.  Now, we grill up this "pink chicken" all the time...and we've never once served it to company without being asked for the recipe. 

Monday, March 12, 2012

Winner of the $10 Meijer Gift Card Giveaway

I used the "True Random Number Generator" over at to pick the winner of the $10 gift card giveaway.  The number it generated was 10.  (Wow, 10s all around huh?)  The 10th comment was made by Michelle, who said "I commented on the English Muffin Bread".  Michelle happens to be my sister-in-law (I promise I was fair with this drawing!), but that's OK since I said family was eligible to enter :)  This is fitting anyway, because Michelle was one of the first people to become a follower of this blog.  She has also eaten or cooked almost all of the recipes on this site.  Michelle, congratulations, and thanks for your unfailing support of my little project over here!

Thanks to everyone for your comments and entries!  I plan to host more giveaways as the ad revenue becomes available!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Easy Garlic Bread

(This recipe was first posted in conjunction with Meijer Ad Week of 3/11/12 - 3/17/12)

Making this bread takes only a few more minutes than opening a package of store-bought garlic bread...but you might not be buying that garlic bread anymore after you taste this!  It's great with any pasta dish, or as a substitute for regular dinner rolls with any meal.

Recipe Round-up (Meijer Ad 3/11/12 - 3/17/12)

Need a little more inspiration for your menu plan this week? Here are some "old" recipes that use on-sale ingredients from Meijer (sale ad 3/11/12 - 3/17/12). 

Good price on boneless, skinless chicken breast this week!  But, starting Thursday, Family Fare is putting it on sale for $1.66/lb (3 lb bag of frozen, boneless, skinless chicken breasts)!
Check out all the chicken recipes you can make...

Friday, March 9, 2012

Bacon-Wrapped Sausage Appetizers

(This recipe was first posted in conjunction with Meijer Ad Week 3/11/12 - 3/17/12)

Three ingredients are all you'll need to create these mouth-watering appetizers! 

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Regarding the Giveaway...

Hi Everyone,

I had someone tell me today that they "felt bad" entering the $10 gift card giveaway because they didn't want to take $10 from me!  That's a really nice thought, and I realize I might have brought that on by saying "I'm trying to keep my grocery budget down too".  BUT...

The $10 gift card is not coming out of my own pocket!  You might have noticed that I've put a few ads on my blog...and I'm making a SMALL amount of money on those ads.  It's not going to make me rich, by any means, but it's enough to cover a few small giveaways like this once in awhile.

So, don't feel bad, and by all means, please enter :)  But remember, to enter, you MUST post your entry comments under the giveaway post.  In your comments (one per item completed), explain what you did to enter, and include your name.


Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Celebrating 10,000 Hits with a Giveaway!

This giveaway is now closed.  Thanks to everyone for your entries and comments!  Check back for more giveaways soon!

Cooking Up A Sale reached a milestone today.  At least, I consider it a milestone!  As of today, there have been over 10,000 hits on this blog.  That doesn't mean 10,000 separate visits, but it DOES mean 10,000 clicks.  And I know some of you click on the same recipe more than once to double-check the ingredient list or the cooking instructions.  And some of those clicks are mine, testing out links and such.  But even so, I'm pretty excited!
So, in celebration of the 10,000 hits milestone, I am giving away a $10 Meijer gift card!  Sorry, not $10,000.  And not even $100!  Hey, I'm trying to keep my grocery bill down too :)  (By the way, if you win this but you don't live near a Meijer {thanks all you CA and IA readers!}, I'll give you a $10 gift card to the grocery store of your choice instead.)

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Dinner in 30 Minutes

The weather was beautiful this afternoon in West Michigan!  The kids were playing outside with their dad, so I had a quiet house.  I lost track of time (OK, I'll admit, I wasn't busy cleaning or folding laundry, I was checking out some different food blogs!), and when our five-year-old came in complaining he was hungry, I realized it was 5:29PM. 

The race was on!  Almond Tilapia Fillets, Oven-Roasted Asparagus, and Seasoned Rice were on the menu for tonight, but besides having the tilapia thawed, nothing was prepped yet. 

Seasoned Rice

This mildly-seasoned rice comes together in a snap!  The ingredients for this recipe are not necessarily on sale this week (although Meijer does have 25% off their spices), but it was part of my 30-minute dinner tonight, so consider it a bonus recipe :)

2 cups chicken broth OR 2 cups water and 2 chicken bouillon cubes)
2 cups instant/Minute rice
4 Tbsp margarine, cubed
1/2 tsp garlic salt
1/2 tsp onion salt
1/2 tsp celery salt
1/2 tsp basil

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Recipe Round-up (Meijer Ad 3/4/12 - 3/10/12)

Need a little more inspiration for your menu plan this week? Here are some "old" recipes that use on-sale ingredients from Meijer (sale ad 3/4/12 - 3/10/12). Maybe you used one or more of these recipes when the ingredient(s) went on sale last time, and you're ready to make the same one(s) again...or maybe you haven't had a chance to try any of them yet! But either way, here are some match-ups.

Almond Tilapia Fillets

(This recipe was first posted in conjunction with the Meijer Ad Week of 3/4/12 - 3/10/12)

This mild fish gets lots of flavor from the combination of toppings.  Tilapia doesn't have a strong "fishy" flavor, so even if you don't normally care for seafood, you might like this!

Strawberry Jello Salad

(This recipe was first posted in conjunction with the Meijer Ad Week of 3/4/12 - 3/10/12)

This fruity, fluffy salad comes together in no time, and is perfect as a side dish for pasta, burgers, or pizza.

Broccoli Casserole

(This recipe was first posted in conjunction with the Meijer Ad Week 3/4/12 - 3/10/12)

We had this delicious side dish recently at the home of a friend.  It comes together quickly and can be made with either fresh or frozen broccoli.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Cheesy Chicken Enchiladas

This recipe was first posted in conjunction with the Meijer Kraft Cheese bonus/Catalina offer, 3/2/12 and 3/3/12

My family loves this cheesy, moist version of chicken enchiladas.  You can either make it in a 9x13, or split it into two 9x9s.  Bake one pan now, and freeze the other pan for later...or give it away!