Homemade Granola Bars: Build A Menu

Homemade Granola Bars

 

This week’s Cooking With Kids recipe is almost too simple, yet the results are fantastic. It’s also a recipe that is very easy to sub Gluten Free/Allergy Friendly ingredients if needed. They last up to a week in an airtight container, making it super easy to make on the weekend and have ready for snacks all week long! Ready to get started? Check the recipe below for your list of ingredients and then follow these simple steps to make your own homemade granola bars.

Homemade granola bars

Ingredients: 

Healthy Granola Bars from Scratch

Directions: 

  • First, dump ALL the ingredients together in a mixer.
  • Add in any of your favorite ingredients like chocolate chips, nuts, etc.
  • Mix well.
  • Spread the granola mix out on your baking sheet, making sure to keep it about the same thickness all the way across.
  • Once it’s done, cut it while it’s still warm because once it cools it’s crunchy and harder to cut. Use a pizza cutter and cut into “bars.”  
  • Let the bars cool on the pan. Separate once they’re cool enough to touch and have hardened.
  • Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week.

Print a copy of this recipe from Build A Menu HERE

Build A Menu  is an online menu planning service that makes meal planning and grocery shopping fast, easy and budget friendly. Not familiar with them? Take a minute to browse the site and see how they can save you time and money, too!

Molly Members get free access to their Dine on a Dime planner and shopping list from the member page – and a special discount to the full service. See benefits here. 

Oven Roasted Fresh Green Beans with Thyme

Oven-Roasted Fresh Green beans by Build A Menu

 

Delicious Oven Roasted Fresh Green Beans with Thyme are a real treat any time of the year, and perfect for spring!

Have you visited our friends at Build A Menu.com yet?  If you are working on your Spring meals for the family or Easter Dinner for a crowd – they can help you get your ducks in a row.

Here is one dish from B.A.M. that looks good and tastes great on any table: 

“There are only three ingredients in this simple yet elegant side dish.  Fresh green beans, olive oil and thyme.  Inexpensive, healthy, and so yummy.  You can find this recipe and many other delicious side dishes in our menu planning website.” ~ Lisa Holcomb 

Try the delicious Oven Roasted Fresh Green Beans with Thyme on a week night or a special occasion and it may just become a new family favorite!

Hop on over to check out their full list of services and various menu planning options here. 

Enjoy regular recipes and meal planning ideas from the ladies at Build A Menu in each new issue of Molly Green Magazine! Have you joined yet? Get the details and become a Molly Member here.

linking with Works for Me Wed

Enhanced by Zemanta

Easy Cheesy Crackers from Build A Menu and cooking with kids

Easy Cheesy Crackers

You will love these Easy Cheesy Crackers – another great guest post and recipe from our partners at Build A Menu.

I like to give my kids recipes that involve them getting their hands dirty. They love to make a mess, love to get their hands right down into the process. So I figure, why fight it? I took a recipe for cheese crackers, ramped up the flavor a bit with some garlic, and tossed the pastry cutter idea out the window.

Who needs a pastry cutter when you have ten fingers ready to stir and squish? And while using cookie cutters might be super cute, with a relatively crumbly dough I knew the frustration factor (hard to move from board to cookie sheet!) would be too high for my children. So I had them just roll it out right on the cookie sheet and use a pastry wheel to cut squiggly lines.

They loved it! When the crackers came out of the oven, I actually had excited children standing by the cooling rack.

This recipe is a keeper!

Easy Cheesy Crackers

Ingredients

• 1 1/2 cups grated cheddar cheese

• 4 tablespoons butter, softened

• 3/4 cup flour

• 1/2 teaspoon salt

• 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

• 1 tablespoon milk

Directions

Heat oven to 350°. Put the cheese, butter (cut in pieces), flour, salt and garlic in a bowl.

Cracker Ingredients

Use clean hands to mix the ingredients together between your fingers (squish that butter!) until the dough is coarse crumbs, about the size of peas.

Add the milk and use your hands to form the dough into a ball. If you are a 7-year-old boy it is okay to make the dough into a volcano first. This is not a necessary step in creating the crackers, but may be necessary to the creative process; volcanoes often are – if you are a little boy.

Lightly flour a baking sheet. We lined ours with foil because it is an old beat-up sheet, but it proved to be useful as we were able to easily remove the crackers on the foil for cooling. Place the dough on it and roll out the dough until it is 1/8″ thick.

Cross cut dough for cheesy crackers

Cut lines in the dough like a grid to make cracker-sized squares. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the edges are golden. Cool on the baking sheet, then break apart into squares.

Yummy Cheesy squares

Build A Menu is an online menu planning service that makes meal planning and grocery shopping fast, easy and budget friendly. Not familiar with it? Take a minute to browse the site and see how it can save you time and money, too!

Go HERE to check it out and download your printed recipe for delicious Easy Cheesy Crackers!

Molly Members – Access Dine on a Dime HERE- Exclusively for Molly Members from Build A Menu! 

Members Page HERE – New MGM 2014 Issues

Molly’s $7 Suppers HERE 

linking with Works for me Wednesday

Cilantro Lime Chicken Salad: Build A Menu

Cilantro Chicken Salad

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Doesn’t this Cilantro Lime Chicken Salad look spring fresh and amazing? It is a colorful and deliciously healthy way to welcome in the new season.

Just in case you haven’t noticed … we are big fans of the Build A Menu program! If you are a Molly Green Magazine member, you can download their Dine on a Dime menu and shopping list right from your member page.  You also have a discount code – exclusive for Molly Members to join and start using this fantastic program today!

From Build A Menu

Who says eating on a budget has to be boring? One of our goals here at Build A Menu is to give our members plenty of mouth-watering choices that are surprisingly low cost to make.

Take this recipe for example: Cilantro Lime Chicken Salad on Avocado Serves 4-6 people and costs under $6 at most grocery stores (that’s for the entire recipe, not per person!).

Not only does this recipe look fabulous and taste scrumptious, it costs less than $1 per serving to make! Want more low-cost recipes to feed your crew? Check out what’s on our menu this week.

How does Build a Menu work? Just choose your grocery store, select the recipes you want for the week, print your customized shopping list and you’re done. You’ll always know how much your groceries will cost before you ever get to the store.

This is an “S” meal if you follow the THM plan. We make grocery shopping fast, easy and budget friendly!

Bon Appetit!

~ The Team At Build A Menu

Cilantro Lime Chicken Salad

Cilantro Lime Chicken Salad on Avocado

Recipe type: Main       Cuisine: Chicken        Serves: 6

Ingredients
  • 3 chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
  • 3 Tbsp mayo
  • 1 Tbsp brown mustard
  • 1 Tbsp lime juice
  • 5 Tbsp cilantro, chopped
  • 3 avocados
  • salt and pepper, to taste
Instructions
  1. Half avocados and remove seeds.
  2. Mix all ingredients together (except avocados) in a small mixing bowl.
  3. Spoon into each avocado half and serve. Enjoy!

 

PRINT A Copy For Yourself HERE

linking with Works for me Wed 

Mexican Casserole: to feed a crowd

Feed a Crowd - Mexican Casserole

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mexican Casserole

“Here’s a great budget friendly recipe that’s easy to make and feeds a crowd. I fixed it for company this past weekend and it fed plenty of us with leftovers for lunch the next day! Serve it up with a salad and some fresh bakery bread and you’ve got an easy meal your guests will love and won’t bust your budget. In fact, you can get all the ingredients for the casserole for around $10 at most grocery stores. Not bad, huh? Give it a try, I think you’re going to love it.”  ~ Karee/ Build A Menu 

Mexican Casserole to feed a crowd

Prep time:  

Cook time:  
Total time:  
Serves: 10

Mexican Casserole

A great budget friendly, crowd pleasing recipe!

Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 325.
  2. In a large skillet, brown meat and drain off fat.
  3. Stir in beans, tomatoes, onion, taco seasoning, soup and water.
  4. Simmer over medium-low heat until everything is well combined and heated through.
  5. Grease a 9×13 casserole dish.
  6. Put down a layer of crushed tortilla chips, followed by a layer of the meat/bean mixture, then half of the cheddar cheese.
  7. Repeat layers.
  8. Cover with foil and bake for 20-30 min, or until bubbly. Let sit for 5-10 min before serving.

Print your own copy to try out this delicious feast of a casserole today – HERE

Cheesy Tuna Casserole: Dine on a Dime Recipe

Cheesy Tuna Casserole

 

They had me at cheesy!

Once I read the rest of the ingredients for this  Cheesy Tuna Casserole, I was a goner for sure. Fresh mushrooms, onions, chicken stock, and whipping cream are a few of the top-secret tips that dress up this cheesy tuna casserole. The creamy ingredients add rich flavor and have made it one of my family’s new favorites! I bet your family will love it too.

Cheesy Tuna Casserole

 Ingredients 

  • 2 6-ounce cans tuna, drained
  • 1 16-ounce package frozen green beans
  • 4 ounces fresh mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/4 cup onion(s), finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 8 ounces cheddar cheese, shredded
Instructions
  1. Cook the green beans as directed on the package; drain well.
  2. Meanwhile, sauté the mushrooms and onion in the butter until very soft and starting to brown a bit.
  3. Add the broth; bring to a boil.
  4. Let the liquid reduce by half, then stir in the cream. Bring back to a boil.
  5. Turn down the heat a bit and cook until reduced and thickened, stirring frequently and watching closely so it doesn’t boil over.
  6. Season to taste.
  7. Stir the tuna and mushroom soup mixture into the green beans.
  8. Add salt and pepper, if needed.
  9. Mix in the cheese; put into a 1 1/2 – 2 quart casserole.
  10. Microwave or bake until hot and bubbly.

If you are following the Trim Healthy Mama plans, Cheesy Tuna Casserole is an S.

This recipe only cost an average of $9 at most major grocery stores and serves four to six, making it an affordable option, before you even consider pulling out the coupons. I haven’t tried yet, but I think a couple of substitutions could be made to save even more on this dish. I’ve been known to make a cream sauce using powdered milk, a bit of butter,  flour and chicken broth (homemade, of course), and though I’m certain the heavy cream is tastier, I could pull this off in a pinch. It’s hard to beat, just the way it is.

Perfect cheesy tuna casserole makes a wonderful meal for a good old-fashioned family dinner!

You can download a printable copy of this recipe right from our friends at Build a Menu HERE. 

Remember, you can enjoy regular menu plans and printable shopping lists from the Build a Menu – Dine on a Dime plan right from your Molly Green Member page! It you haven’t joined the All New Molly Green yet, go here to get the details.

Inspired Bloggers Network – Family Dinner HUGE Giveaway for $800 set of cookware is HERE

Big Giveaway: from Favado to encourage Family Dinners

*affiliate links present 
We take family dinners seriously, here at Molly Green. The family time,  the planning, and preparing of family meal time is not always easy to come by these days for busy families.

An attractive dinner setting

Does dinner time at your house leave you feeling frustrated? Is it too difficult to menu plan and serve a meal that everyone will enjoy while sticking to a budget. Don’t be discouraged because you are not alone.
Guest post from Inspired Bloggers Network – with Giveaway hosted, in part, by Molly Green!
Over the next two weeks, the Inspired Bloggers Network is teaming together with Favado and $5 Dinners to equip you with the tips and inspiration you need to make dinner time with the family a less stressful ordeal. You can follow all of our updates in social media with the hashtag #inspiredfamilydinners, but first, we want you to get to know our sponsors with an awesome giveaway!

Enter to win an All-Clad Cookware set and $5 Dinners Cookbook Gift Basket for Inspired Family Dinners with Favado

 
Enter to win an All-Clad Cookware Set (valued at $800) from Favado and a Cookbook Gift Basket from $5 Dinners between now and February 23rd at 11:59 PM CST.

About Favado

Favado is a mobile savings app that helps shoppers stop overspending on groceries by notifying them when their favorite items are on sale.
With Favado, users can…
  • Compare prices across multiple local grocery and drugstores.
  • Search for best prices on individual ingredients.
  • Personalize their favorite products and brands to quickly see best deals for those items each week.
  • Quickly find coupons for the products that are already on sale for “double the discount.”
  • Build a shopping list in the app, so you don’t forget anything that’s on sale!
Favado has money saving experts who hand select sales and coupons every week — in more than 65,000 grocery and drugstores nationwide — to enable discovery of the best deals for savings up to 70% on everyday items.

So, sign up for Favado and start saving.

Then, follow Favado everywhere: Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest.

Win $1,000 with #FavadoLove


About $5 Dinners

Erin Chase has helped millions of families across the countries enjoy delicious and nutritious family dinners, for less! She’s put together a gift basket with a copy of each of her cookbooks:
The $5 Dinner Mom Cookbook , her The $5 Dinner Mom Breakfast and Lunch Cookbook, and her The $5 Dinner Mom One-Dish Dinners Cookbook -along with some fabulous cooking utensils!

You can find more of her great recipes at 5DollarDinners.com.

Enter to win

To enter for a chance to with the All-Clad Cookware Set (valued at $800) from Favado and a Cookbook Gift Basket from $5 Dinners, you must choose from any (or all) of the choices in the giveaway widget below. This giveaway will close on February 23rd at 11:59 PM CST. For official rules, please view below.

Follow link below to enter Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclaimer: No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law. Facebook and Pinterest are in no way connected or responsible for this giveaway and are held blameless of all legal responsibilities. Winning entry will be selected through Rafflecopter using Random.org and will be notified by email on February 24, 2014. If the winner has not responded within 48 hours, another winner will be selected. Good luck.

Build a Menu recipe- Philly Beef Skillet: Sneak Peek Monday

Philly Beef Skillet Recipe

Build a Menu RecipePhilly Beef Skillet: on Sneak Peek Monday

If you have not yet met our friends from Build a Menu – you should hop over to their blog or their Facebook page (here) and say hello!

 

Enjoy a few valuable words from Lisa -

I have to admit to you that my kids LOVE Hamburger Helper.  However, I don’t.  I don’t like how processed it all is and how much sodium it has in it.  It is fast and convenient and can make a busy mom feel like she’s cooking a nutritious meal.

I’ve been known to do so as well.  However, I can honestly say it’s probably been at least 3 years since Hamburger Helper has made it’s way into my kitchen.   So, I started looking for other alternatives to the much loved (by my kids) Hamburger Helper and I’m telling you , this recipe is just as quick and easy.

Sure, I had to chop some onion but that really wasn’t a big deal.  It was fast, easy and yummy and I had the satisfaction of knowing that it was also so much more healthy and “clean” than a box of Hamburger Helper.  AND…..it only cost about $10.50 at most major grocery stores for the ingredients and serves 4-6!  Enjoy!

If you are following the Trim Healthy Mama plan, then this is an “S” meal.

 

Philly Beef Skillet

 

Download your FREE printable recipe

and read more about the mission and the resources available at Build a Menu.

Molly Members – Check your Member Page for a special discount code to save big on the already affordable full program at BAM or take advantage of your exclusive access to the Dine on a Dime menu planners – now also downloadable from your Molly Green Member page!

We have more great member benefits coming your way – stay tuned!!

 

Importance of family dinners: & Recipe from Build a Menu

In the fast paced world we live in, it can be easy to forget the importance of bringing the family together around the table.

Guest post by Lisa Holcomb of Build a Menu

Nacho beef soup - build a menu

 

10 Conversation Starters for Dinner Time

     When you think of happy families sitting around the table eating dinner do you conjure up thoughts of “Leave it to Beaver” or some other old sitcom?   The mother walking around in her apron, high heels and pearls with a perfectly set table, perfect dinner and perfect family all sitting at the table.

Well, let’s get real please.  I know that’s sure not me.  Just like you, I’m a homeschooling, chauffeuring, (sometimes scatter brained), Jesus loving, busy, busy mom.  I’m usually doing good to get all four of my boys and my husband to the table in the evening.  Not that they don’t want to eat, just our busy schedules can get in the way.  However, we do try to make it a priority to eat dinner together as a family as many nights during the week as possible.  Some nights are harder than others.  Some nights we’re not all at home.  Still, we make it a priority as much as we can and I find that we are able to be together around the dinner table more often than not.

It really is amazing what a difference a positive meal time can make in children and families. Studies show that children who dine with the family:

  • eat more fruits and vegetables
  • are happier
  • are better adjusted  
  • are more socially adept
  • get better grades
  • are less likely to smoke, abuse drugs or alcohol
  • are less likely to suffer from eating disorders, obesity or depression

Kids of all ages benefit from family meal time together.  Teens and tweens need the family table time.  They need the positive atmosphere and conversation that should take place at the table.  They need to be reminded that they are valued and loved.

Our two youngest children were adopted from the Texas foster care system and its amazing how much healing can be done around the kitchen table eating a meal together and bonding. Families who eat together share values together.

Some of the family eat Sunday dinner, on Sunda...

Some of the family eat Sunday dinner, on Sundays the two married sons of the Sergents, their wives and children often… – NARA – 541343 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Need some conversation starters for dinner time?  Here are just a few fun ones:

  1. If you couldn’t watch TV or go online for a month, how would you spend that time?
  2. If you could have any superpower, which would you choose?  (This one is a regular topic at our table.)
  3. How can you tell someone you love them without using words?
  4. If you could be a famous person for a week, who would you be and why?
  5. If you could trade places with your parents for a day, how would you do things differently?
  6. If you could have another name what would you choose?
  7. Would you rather meet your great great grandparents or your great great grandchildren?
  8. If you could be brilliant in one subject, which would you choose?
  9. What do you think Heaven will be like?
  10. In what era would you most like to have grown up (besides the current one)?

Does your family have any favorite topics or dinner time games they like to play? We’d love to hear about them.

Try this fun dish for family game night!

This soup recipe really hit the spot and was so easy and quick to make and cost about $11.00 for the ingredients to feed my family of 6.  If you’re a Trim Healthy Mama, then this is an “S” meal for you.  I hope your family enjoys it as much as we did.

nacho beef soup

 

Molly Green Members enjoy exclusive access to Dine on a Dime –  weekly menu & shopping list -access right from your Molly Member Page!
Members – be sure to check out the SUPERBOWL Menu in your Dine on a Dime section this week!!! Are you ready for some FOOTBALL?

Build a Menu: Puffy Chicken Recipe

build a menu - trim healthy mama

 

This Build a Menu: Puffy Chicken recipe has 3 ingredients, takes about 5 min to prepare and about 35 min for it to cook! It costs an average of $10 at most major grocery stores.  Best part is, my family really enjoyed it!  Hope yours does as well.  Enjoy.

build a menu - puffy chicken 3 ingredients, about 5 min to prepare it and about 35 min for it to cook and cost an average of $10 at most major grocery stores.  Best part is, my family really enjoyed it!  Hope yours does as well.  Enjoy.

If you are on the Trim Healthy Mama plan then this is an S meal.

Ingredients
  • 4-6 chicken breast boneless skinless
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 cup Parmesan cheese shredded
Instructions
  1. Mix together Parmesan cheese with mayonnaise, to make a thick paste.
  2. Place chicken in a pan. Bake in a 350 degree oven till half-done.
  3. Turn over the chicken pieces and coat each thickly with the cheese/mayo mixture. Return to oven and bake until done.
  4. The paste will puff up into a delicious coating.

- See more and print the recipe on the Build a Menu blog here.

Molly Members will soon have weekly exclusive access to the BAM – Dine on a Dime planners!

Find out more about the new member benefits here.

Learn how having a Molly membership can save you money!