Although we are very frugal, we do love to eat well. Steak dinners for four are way to expensive when dining out so we typically cook ours at home. We love to grill steaks in the summer. But once the weather starts to cool off or on rainy days, we still need our steaks.
This is a great recipe we found here to satisfy our rainy weather cravings.
We picked up about a pound of meat for $18 and sliced them in half to make four eight ounce steaks. Even with the extra ingredients we were well under $25 for the actual entree. Considering just one eight ounce filet is often $25 at a steakhouse, this is a great deal for a the cost conscious family that still likes to eat well.
Filet Mignon with Mushrooms and Wine Sauce
- 4 Tablespoons Unsalted butter
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup sliced bella mushrooms
- 1 small yellow onion diced
- 4 minced garlic cloves
- 1 Teaspoon thyme
- 4 filet mignon steaks (4-6 oz each)
- ½ cup Merlot Wine
- 1 ½ cups beef broth
- ½ cup heavy whipping cream
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Use a large cast iron skillet for best results.
- Season all steaks with salt and pepper to your taste.
- Over medium heat, melt 2 tablespoons of butter and 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add the sliced mushrooms and cook for 5-8 minutes until mushrooms are soft.
- Stir in onions and cook for about 3-5 minutes.
- Add garlic and pepper to taste.
- Cook this mixture for another 3-5 minutes then transfer this mixture to a plate or bowl and set aside.
- Add 2 tablespoons of butter and 1 tablespoon of oil to the pan. Then over medium heat allow oil and butter to mix and then add steaks.
- Cook steaks for 5-7 minutes each side which should be medium rare to medium.
- Remove steaks from pan and set aside. Be aware steaks will continue to cook as they rest.
- Add ½ cup Merlot over medium high heat and boil until it reduces. This takes about 5 minutes. Add 1½ cups beef broth and simmer for about 5-7 minutes. This will reduce by about 1/3.
- Add ½ heavy cream and boil until the sauce thickens.
- Return the mushroom mixture and steaks to the pan on medium heat.
- Allow all ingredients to warm and steaks to cook to desired level.
These easy squash and zucchini slices are a regular side item at our house. They are easy to make and freeze well for left overs lunches.
If you have a ready to cook Chicken and Noodle Casserole or something similar you can just pop these into the oven with it.
Also, this is a really great recipe for the kids to make. Our eight year old can make these all by herself. The only thing we don’t allow her to do alone is flip them mid way through baking. It is not necessary to flip but we prefer to so both sides get a little crispy.
- 2 medium yellow squash
- 2 medium zucchini
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- ¾ cup Italian bread crumbs
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- Preheat oven to 425
- Wash squash and zucchini.
- Cut squash and zucchini into 1/8-1/4 inch round slices. The thinner the slices the crispier they will become.
- Place the olive oil in shallow bowl or pan.
- Place bread crumbs, salt and pepper into another shallow bowl or pan.
- Take the squash and dredge in the olive oil.
- Next dredge the squash in the bread crumbs.
- Place the pieces on a baking sheet.
- Repeat the process with the zucchini.
- Cook for 12 minutes and then flip the pieces over with a fork.
- Cook for another 12 minutes.
We love our slow cooker. It makes for easy dinners on busy weeknights. This recipe for slow cooker BBQ Chicken sandwiches is so easy it is hardly a recipe.
We usually salt and pepper the chicken the night before cooking. Then before leaving the house for the day, we put it all in the crock pot and leave it cooking. My favorite part is coming home and the house smelling great! Also, it is a great feeling knowing dinner is done.
Since our crock pot goes to a warm after it stops cooking at 6 hours, we usually add a little more BBQ sauce and turn it back on low for another 30 minutes or so. This gives us time to change clothes, figure out who has what for homework and set the table. Also, you could make these quick and easy seasoned potatoes as a side dish. Or serve with chips!
Although you can use a fork to shred the chicken, we use a hand mixer on low to shred. It only takes a couple of minutes with the mixer. Toss on hamburger buns and dinner is served.
Where we live, a BBQ chicken sandwich is around $7.00. For a family of four that is $28.00 before you add drinks, sides and a tip at a restaurant. But a pound of chicken is usually $5.00 and buns are about $2.00. So for around $10.00 you can feed your family a delicious meal with little effort. That is a savings of $18.00 compared to a restaurant. If your family trades out three meals a week from a restaurant for a home cooked meal and saves $18.00 each, that is a savings over $200 a month!!!! Folks that is a vacation!
Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken Sandwich
- 1.5 pound skinless chicken breast
- 1 14.5 ounce can chicken broth (low sodium)
- 1 cup water
- 1 ½ cup BBQ sauce divided (we used Kraft honey barbeque)
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 8-10 hamburger buns
- In crock pot, add chicken broth and water.
- Sprinkle chicken breast with salt and pepper.
- Place chicken breast in crock pot.
- Pour ¾ cup of BBQ sauce over chicken. Cover and cook on low heat for 6 hours.
- Add the other ¾ cup of BBQ sauce and continue to cook for 30-45 minutes.
- Use a hand mixer on a low setting to shred the chicken.
- Add a little more BBQ sauce to the chicken as you make the sandwiches.
Grilled pork chops are my favorite but sometimes the weather just doesn’t cooperate. This recipe for Parmesan and Bread Crumb Crusted Pork Chops is delicious for those days when you just can’t grill.
It is super easy to make and only take about 20-30 to cook. Throw on some beans and put some potato slices in the oven with the pork chops and dinner is ready in 30 minutes.
Our daughter loves to help cook which is great since it is one of her joys. You might as well enjoy what you do! Anyways, she usually cleans and slices the potatoes as well as grading the cheese. These are all easy things a young child can do to help with meals and teach responsibility.
Parmesan and Bread Crumb Crusted Pork Chops
- 4-6 boneless pork chops
- ½ cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1 cup Italian bread crumbs
- ¾ cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
- Non stick cooking spray
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Spray cooking sheet or shallow baking pan with non stick cooking spray.
- Place Olive oil in a shallow bowl or plate.
- Place bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese in a second shallow bowl or plate.
- Dip pork chop in Olive oil coating both sides. Allow excess to drip off.
- Dredge pork chop in bread crumb and cheese mixture pressing down to ensure side is fully coated. Repeat with the other side.
- Place pork chop on cooking sheet. Repeat with remaining pork chops.
- Place in oven for 12-15 minutes. Flip chops and continue to cook for 10-12 minutes until done.