Saturday, July 31, 2010

Kroger Deals

No recipes for a while. I have something strange going on with me, keeping me from dairy. Lactose intolerance? Gastroenteritis? I'm not sure. Hopefully I'll find out sometime this week.

Here are my favorite deals this week at Kroger:

Almond Breeze (the vanilla flavor is delicious!), $2.50
-$0.55 Kroger ecoupon
-$1.00 5/23 SS

Honey Nut Cheerios - 25 oz (what Brett eats every morning), $2.74
-$0.55 Kroger ecoupon
-$1/2 printable from or
=$1.69 for the first one and $2.19 for the second one

Nature Valley Granola Nut Clusters, $1.29
-$1 shortcuts ecoupon or cellfire ecoupon
-$1 printable from,, and
=+$0.71 for the first one and $0.29 for the second one, etc.

Best Life Buttery Spread, $1 (Lactose free!)
-$1 6/13 RP or 7/11 RP

Speed Stick (men's or women's), $0.88
-$0.50 7/25 SS

Cauliflower, $1 each

**P&G Mega Deals**

Charmin Ultra Soft/Strong 16 ct, $5.99
-$3 Kroger ecoupon
-$0.25 6/6 or 8/1 P&G
=$2.24 ($0.14 a roll - crazy cheap!)

Downy Softener or Fabric Sheets, $3.99
-$2 Kroger ecoupon
-$1 6/6 or 8/1 P&G

Tide - 100 oz, $9.99
-$2 Kroger ecoupon
-$0.35 6/6 P&G or $1 7/4 or 8/1 P&G
=$6.99 (very good deal for Tide)

Gillette Body Wash, $1.99
-$2 7/4 P&G

Other great deals at:

Southern Savers
Couponing 101
The Big Red Pot

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Kroger Trip 7-17

I know it is hard to see everything in that picture. Those are all of the groceries that I got this afternoon ($117 worth of stuff for $48). Kroger is having a mega event sale. I didn't get that many mega event items, but I definitely took advantage of the sale. Here are some of the deals I did:

Pork loin $1.97/lb

Butterfinger, $0.50
-FREE coupon from Facebook

Kraft olive oil mayo, $2.89
-FREE cream cheese coupon I got in the mail

Smart Balance Milk, $2.99
-$2 6/13 RP or 7/11 RP
-$2 ecoupon
=$1 moneymaker

Sudafed PE, $2.09 (closeout)
-$1.50 4/11 RP

Rolaids, $2
-$4/2 6/6RP
=two free

Cottonelle 12-pk, $4.99
-$1 July All You magazine or $0.50/1 in 7/11 SS
=$3.99/pack = $0.33/roll

Mega event items:

Quaker rice cakes, $0.99
-$1 Kroger print out coupon from a few weeks ago

Tums Ultra, $3
-$2 Kroger print out coupon from a few weeks ago

Kraft cheese, $1.88
-$1/2 Kroger coupons in the mail
=$1.38 each
**If you wait to buy these on Monday, you will get catalinas (buy any 5 and receive $5 catalina) - I'm sure you can buy four and get a catalina, but I don't know of what value.

Hunts tomatoes, $0.45

Dan-o-nino yogurt, $2.29
-$1.50 6/6 SS or 7/18 SS
=$0.79 each
(When you buy 2 you get a $1 catalina)

Ore-ida hashbrowns, $2.29
-$1 ecoupon

Q-tips (375 ct), $1.50
-$0.30 5/23 RP
=$0.60 after triple coupon

Philidelphia cream cheese, $0.99
-FREE cream cheese coupon I got in the mail

Scotch Brite scrubber, $1
-$1 6/6SS
(This rang up as a mega item but didn't have a mega item tag.)

Here are lists of other deals (many great deals with printable coupons, but our printer needs more ink, and I keep forgetting to buy it):

Southern Savers
Couponing 101
Mommy Snacks
The Big Red Pot

You may think, how on earth do those ingredients make all of our breakfasts/lunches/dinners? I stockpile, so I don't have to spend a lot each week. I spend more than other couponers because I make all of our meals (no freezer/pre-made food) and use a lot of produce. Also, cooking is my hobby, so I don't mind spending a little more at the grocery store to buy items without coupons. I actually don't use coupons at Kroger that much anymore unless there are big sales like today (many of the products I buy don't have coupons - but I only buy them if they are on sale). On weeks where I spend less, I stock up on meats - sirloin steak, ground beef/turkey, salmon, tilapia, and chicken breasts. Last week I stocked up on sirloin, chicken breasts, and a lot of cereal (special K and honey nut cheerios) - and my wonderful grandma gave me two boxes of cereal. :o) Today I got 5lbs of pork loin which I will trim up, cut in half, and freeze for sometime in the future.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

$25 Kroger giftcard with transferred Rx

Make sure to check out this week's Kroger ad. There is a coupon for a $25 giftcard when you transfer any prescription from another pharmacy. (Coupon valid through 7/20/10. Not valid on Rx included in $4/$10 generic program.) I'm so excited because I have a prescription I need to fill this week! I love free groceries. :o)

7/10 CVS Trip

I "paid" $1 for everything pictured above. (I really only lost $1 CVS ECBs.)

Here are the deals I did:

Buy Complete Multi Purpose Contact Solution (12 oz) at $7.99, get $7.99 ECB (Limit 1)
-$2/1 coupon in the 5/16 RP insert
=$5.99, get $7.99 ECBs = $2 overage

Buy 2 John Freida Products (3 - 12oz) at $5 each, get $5 ECB (Limit 1)
-two $3/1 coupons in the 6/6 SS insert (Root Awakening Products)
=$4, get $5 ECB = $1 overage

Monthly Deal: Buy 2 CVS Pantiliners (22 ct) at $0.50 each, get $1 ECB (Limit 3)
=$1, get $1 ECB = free

Tide deal stated in an earlier post (7/4 to 7/10 weekly ad deal).

There are two other free deals that I didn't do. They are a Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday deal, and I already have a lot from last summer.

Buy Paper Mate Pens (10 ct) at $0.99, get $0.99 ECB (Limit 1) = free

Buy 5" Calibur Scissors at $0.99, get $0.99 ECB (Limit 1) = free

Here is a full list of deals and coupon match-ups for this week's ad (Southern Savers).

Here is this week's ad.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Butter Chicken

I have finally found a good butter chicken recipe! I'm not sure how authentic it is, but it tastes like Indian food to me, and we really like it. It goes really well with the basmati rice recipe I have.

Butter Chicken

Adapted from Tasty Kitchen member lillieknits


4 pieces boneless skinless chicken breasts
5 cloves garlic, minced
½ tsp salt
½ tsp black pepper
½ tsp cayenne pepper
¼ tsp ground coriander
¼tsp ground cumin
¼ tsp ground cardamom (I don't have ground cardamom, so I used one pod)
1 whole lime, juiced
1 whole onion, diced
4 Tbsp butter (I used 2 Tbsp)
1 can (14.5 oz can) tomato sauce
1 can (14.5 oz can) petite diced tomatoes
1 pint cream (I used 2 cups 1% milk mixed with 2 Tbsp cornstarch)
1 bunch chopped cilantro, to taste
Basmati Rice (I made this rice)

Combine first 9 ingredients and marinate overnight.

Saute the onion in the butter until soft. Add marinated chicken and cook about 3 minutes on each side. Add the tomato sauce and diced tomatoes. Bring to a boil and then cover and adjust the heat to low. Let simmer for 20 minutes. Take the breasts out and cut them into bite-size pieces. Add the cream/milk mixture and cilantro. Add chicken breasts back into the sauce. Serve with basmati rice. (If you are using the milk + cornstarch mixture, let the sauce thicken up for a few minutes before you put the chicken back in.)

**When I made this I only used two chicken breasts. I'm not sure how much of a difference the chicken will be in the above marinade. It is a small volume so you may want to double it...?

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

$4 Tide at CVS

Tide Laundry Detergent $5.97 Earn 1 ECB (Limit 1)
-$1/1 Tide Detergent 7/4 P&G
=$3.97 after coupon and ECBs

Here are the links to this week's deals:
Southern Savers
The Thrifty Mama

Here is a link to this week's ad.

General Tso's Chicken

I think I have found out how Chinese restaurants get chicken to have a breaded texture but still really moist. Cornstarch. It sounds weird... and looks a little strange when cooking, but it really works! I've made this a couple times, so I know it wasn't just luck the first time that the chicken ended up tender. I also made a few changes from the original recipe I found. It originally had more sugar, ketchup, and ginger.

General Tso's Chicken
Adapted from Tracey's Culinary Adventures

1/4 cup brown sugar
3 tablespoons hoisin sauce
3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
2 tablespoons ketchup
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1/2 cup water
3-4 tablespoons cornstarch
2 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch cubes
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon sesame oil
6-8 spring green onions, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, finely chopped or grated
hot pepper flakes (optional)

Mix together the first 6 ingredients (through the water) and set aside. This is the sauce.

Put the cornstarch into a ziplock back and drop the chicken cubes in. Shake until fully coated. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil and saute the chicken until browned. Remove the chicken to a plate and tent with foil to keep warm.

Wipe pan clean with paper towel and add sesame oil with onions and chopped ginger. Fry about 1 minute, until fragrant. Add sauce mixture. Bring to a boil and simmer about 2 minutes, until the sauce thickens a bit. Add the chicken back to the skillet, toss to coat with sauce and continue cooking until the chicken is cooked through. Add red pepper flakes, to taste, if desired. Serve with rice.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Cajun Chicken Pasta

I used to order cajun chicken pasta every time I went to Chili's. We don't each out much anymore, but I try to resist getting it when we do go there. Pasta already has a lot of calories, so adding heavy cream just isn't an option at our house. I would want to make it every week. This original recipe (link below) had heavy cream, but we still like it with 1% milk/cornstarch. The pioneer woman has a good recipe for cajun chicken pasta as well, with of course, heavy cream. I think less than 10% of her recipes have no butter/heavy cream. :o( You can still substitute the cream with 1% milk/cornstarch. The main difference between her recipe and this one is that there is also chicken broth and white wine in hers. Here is the recipe for what is pictured above. My version of Ree's is below as well.

Cajun Chicken Pasta
Adapted from


12 oz rotini, cooked according to package
2 Tbsp butter (or olive oil)
2 skinnless, boneless chicken breast halves, sliced 1/2" thick
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 small onion, diced
1 Tbsp cajun seasoning, or to taste
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
salt, to taste
1 cup milk (we used 1%)
1 green bell pepper, julienned
1 red bell pepper, julienned
1 cup fresh mushrooms, sliced
1/2 cup parmesan cheese, grated
1 Tbsp cornstarch

Cook rotini (or similar pasta) according to package directions. Drain; set aside. Melt butter (or olive oil) in a large skillet over medium heat. Add chicken; cook, stirring frequently, until browned, about 6 to 8 minutes. (We like to cook the chicken on the George Forman, seasoned with lemon pepper and Tony's.) Add garlic and onions. Cook for a few minutes. Add cajun/creole seasoning, cayenne pepper, salt, bell peppers, and mushrooms. Stir to combine. Cover and cook for 5 minutes. Uncover; Stir 1 Tbsp cornstarch into 1 cup milk. Once the cornstarch is dissolved, stir in the milk mixture and let simmer another 2 minutes. Take off heat and stir in parmesan cheese. Stir in cooked pasta. You may need to let sit for a few minutes to let the pasta absorb the sauce and thicken.

*Note from Ree's recipe: Be aware of whether or not your Cajun spice contains salt. If it does not, you’ll need to lightly salt both the chicken and the veggies. If it does contain salt, be careful not to overdo it; stop a little short, then just add more cayenne to make sure you get enough spice without oversalting.

**Sandy Hern took this picture on her awesome camera. You can see more of her photos on her son in law's website.

If you like to cook with wine, here is the Pioneer Woman's recipe. We like it better than the above recipe. (I buy the four little white wine bottles at Kroger when they are on sale. I'm not big on wine, but chardonnay is good with this pasta.)

Cajun Chicken Pasta
Adapted from The Pioneer Woman

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into cubes
1 Tbsp cajun seasoning, more to taste
16 oz pasta
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp butter (can be left out)
1/2 large red onion, sliced
1 green bell pepper, seeded and sliced
1 red bell pepper, seeded and sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups low sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup white wine
1 cup 1% milk
2 Tbsp cornstarch
Parmesan, to taste
cayenne pepper, to taste (optional)
salt, to taste (optional)
black pepper, to taste (optional)
fresh parsley, to taste (optional)

Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain when pasta is still al dente.

Sprinkle 1 1/2 teaspoons Cajun spice over chicken pieces (I like to cook the breasts whole and chop it up when after it's cooked). Toss around to coat. Heat 1 tablespoon oil and 1 tablespoon butter in a heavy skillet over high heat. Add half the chicken in a single layer; do not stir. Allow chicken to brown on one side, about 1 minute. Flip to the other side and cook an additional minute. Remove with a slotted spoon and place on a clean plate. Repeat with remaining chicken. Remove chicken, leaving pan on high heat.

Add remaining olive oil and butter. When heated, add peppers, onions, and garlic. Sprinkle on remaining Cajun spice, and add salt if needed. Cook over very high heat for 1 minute, stirring gently and trying to get the vegetables as dark/black as possible. Remove all vegetables from the pan.

With the pan over high heat, pour in the wine and chicken broth. Cook on high for 3 to 5 minutes, scraping the bottom of the pan to deglaze. Reduce heat to medium-low and pour in the milk/cornstarch mixture, stirring/whisking constantly. Cook sauce over medium-low heat for a few minutes, until sauce starts to thicken the mixture. Taste and add freshly ground black pepper, cayenne pepper, and/or salt to taste. Sauce should be spicy!

Finally, add chicken and vegetables to sauce, making sure to include all the juices that have drained onto the plate. Stir and cook for 1 to 2 minutes, until mixture is bubbly and hot. Add drained pasta and toss to combine. Top with parmesan and chopped fresh parsley, if desired.

Pecan Cream Cheese Pound Cake

Brett's mom, Sandy, has made this a few times when we came home. It is one of my favorite deserts that she makes. Well, she has a lot of really good desserts. Hopefully, over time, I will learn how to make all of them! The almond extract/flavoring gives it a little of a pistachio flavor. Yum!

1 1/2 cup butter or margarine (room temperature)
8 oz cream cheese (room temperature)
3 cups granulated sugar
6 eggs (room temperature)
1 tsp vanilla flavor
1 tsp almond flavor
3 cups cake flour, divided (2 3/4 cups + 1/4 cup)
1 cup finely chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 325. Grease and flour a 10' bunt pan. In a large bowl, beat sugar, butter, and cream cheese until fluffy (5 minutes). Add eggs, one at a time. Add vanilla and almond flavor. Stir reserved 1/4 cup flour into pecans. Add remaining flour to batter a little at a time, beating at a low speed with mixer. Fold in pecans. Pour the batter into the pan and bake for 1 1/2 hours. Cool and enjoy! Sift powdered sugar over the top if desired.