Tag Archives: budget friendly meals

{Budget Friendly} Spicy Tomato Soup

Like many of you, the new year always brings similar resolutions. Be healthy. Save money. This year I plan to share with you some of my belt and budget shrinking recipes to help you stay on track with your 2012 goals. This tomato soup has been a staple in my household for some time. Made with pureed beans and carrots, it’s creamy without the calories. Best of all, you can make the entire batch of soup for less than $6. That is a $1 per person, take that McDonald’s dollar menu!

Spicy Tomato Soup
Makes 4-6 servings

1 TBSP Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 Red Onion, chopped
3 C chicken or vegetable broth
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
1 can Navy Beans, rinsed and drained
1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
1 sprig rosemary, finely chopped
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp cracked black pepper

Rosemary Whipped Topping (optional)
1 C heavy cream
1 TBSP lemon juice
rosemary (leftover from soup recipe)

In a large stock pot, heat olive oil. Add onions and cook until soft, 3-5 minutes. Add broth, carrots, beans, tomatoes, rosemary (leaving a tiny pinch behind), salt, pepper and red pepper. Bring to a boil, cook until carrots are softened, about 15 minutes. Using an immersion blender, throughly blend soup until thick and creamy. (If you do not have an immersion blender, transfer soup to blender or food processor in batches until all is smooth).

In a cold metal bowl, whip heavy cream on high until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Slowly add pinch of rosemary and lemon juice until combined.

Ladle soup into bowl, top with one teaspoon of whipped cream.

The extra tablespoon of whipped topping is not necessary, but adding a real creamy texture to the soup. The extra tablespoon is worth the few extra calories in my book, but if you are really cutting down, leave it out. It is delicious either way!

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Filed under Budget Friendly, Cook, Healthy

Apricot Chicken in a slow cooker

As a working mom, I love using my slow cooker to create simple and delicious meals.  This apricot chicken recipe is one of my family favorites.  The sweet apricot sauce is so tasty and the recipe uses chicken thighs which makes it budget friendly.

Apricot Chicken
1 small jar apricot preserves (11oz)
2 teaspoons dijon mustard
1 Tablespoon soy sauce
1/2 tsp chili flakes (optional, if you like heat)
6-8 chicken thighs

Place chicken in your slow cooker.  In a separate bowl, mix the apricot preserves, mustard, soy sauce and chili flakes if you are using them.  Pour sauce over chicken.  Cover and cook on low 6-8 hours or high 4-6 hours.

Remove chicken from the crock pot and shred, removing all bones.  Serve over rice.

Quick, delicious and budget friendly.  My kind of meal.

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Filed under Cook, Main Dish