French Apple Tart (Tarte normande)

It’s the season for apple tarts, Fall, when the biggest bounty of apples shows up at the market. I’ve had to learn about all sorts of other varieties of apples since the ones available in France differ from the ones in the United States that I was used to. But it’s been a wonderful journey of discovery and I’ve found unusual varieties that were one day, abundant at the…

It’s the season for apple tarts, Fall, when the biggest bounty of apples shows up at the market. I’ve had to learn about all sorts of other varieties of apples since the ones available in France differ from the ones in the United States that I was used to. But it’s been a wonderful journey of discovery and I’ve found unusual varieties that were one day, abundant at the market, and the next week, all gone.

When I lived in California, we had some terrific apples, coming from places like The Apple Farm, which resurrected many varieties of “lost” apples, or what would be called in French – pommes oubliées. Thankfully most are as close as my local market.

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Carrot Soup

Roasted carrots and brown butter take a humble carrot soup to a new level of yum. PS this recipe got props from Chef Gordon Ramsay. Try it!

The post Carrot Soup appeared first on Budget Bytes.

When times were tight, I’d go to the dollar store for groceries. On one occasion, I picked up a bag of carrots in the hopes that my two-year-old would want to have them as a healthy snack. By the end of the week, defeated by a toddler, I found myself staring blankly at a wilting bag of carrots I could not afford to waste. And so this roasted carrot soup was born. I use brown butter for nuttiness, cream to add body, and ginger and thyme to elevate the flavors. It’s so good, it got props from Chef Gordon Ramsay when I made it on MasterChef.

Overhead shot of carrot soup in a white Dutch oven with sour cream swirled in it.

Is Roasting Necessary?

Roasting is what makes this soup special. It’s the greatest gift you can give a root veggie with very minimal effort. All you have to do is chop carrots and put them in an oven! As the carrots roast, they develop deeper flavors through caramelization. Don’t worry if a few of them charr, as that browning will add a nice smokiness to the finished product. Roasting also reduces the time you’ll need to keep your carrots simmering on a stove. Make sure to slice carrots evenly, so they cook at the same pace.

Boiling Instead of Simmering

Do your best to keep your soup at a simmer, not a boil. You’re looking for gentle bubbles and steam. Otherwise, you’re evaporating most of your liquid before the carrots are through cooking. Boiling soup also causes nutrient loss and destroys aromas. A gentle simmer > a raging boil. ( If you’re single, you can also apply that equation to your love life. You’re welcome.)

Overhead shot of carrot soup in three white bowls with sour cream swirled in it

Can I freeze carrot soup?

Yes, you can freeze carrot soup. Make sure to freeze it in individual portions, as you should only thaw it once. It should keep for up to three months. After that, you can thaw it in the fridge overnight and reheat it in a pot over low heat, or pop the individual portion into a microwave straight from the freezer—cover to avoid splatter, and cook until it’s steaming.

What can I serve with carrot soup?

This soup is very filling, but it also pairs well with these fantastic recipes:

Overhead shot of carrot soup in a white Dutch Oven with sour cream swirled in it.

Side shot of white bowl with carrot soup in it.

Carrot Soup

This roasted carrot soup transforms the humble carrot into a vibrant meal. It scores major points for being as economical as it is hearty. Keep it vegetarian or add chicken breast for a protein punch.
Course Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine American
Total Cost $4.71 recipe / $1.03 serving
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 4 2 cups each
Calories 504kcal
Author Monti – Budget Bytes

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs carrots $1.49
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil $0.12
  • 1/2 tsp salt $0.03
  • 4 Tbsp salted butter $0.50
  • 1 yellow onion $0.65
  • 1 tsp thyme $0.10
  • 3 cups water $0.00
  • 3 cups chicken broth $0.36
  • 1 cup heavy cream $1.12
  • 2 tsp fresh ginger $0.21
  • 2 sprigs Italian parsley (optional) $0.05
  • 4 Tbsp sour cream (optional) $0.08

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 400°F. Clean the carrots and cut them into 1/4 inch rounds. Drizzle with olive oil and salt. Roast the carrots at 400°F for about 35 minutes until they have softened and begun to caramelize.
  • Dice the onions. Add the butter to a large Dutch oven and cook over medium heat until it foams and the milk solids start to brown. Turn off the heat, add the thyme and cook for one minute, to infuse the butter.
  • Turn the heat to medium and cook the onions in the browned butter until the onions are translucent, about two minutes.
  • Add the chicken broth and water and cover. Simmer until carrots are done.
  • When the carrots have begun to caramelize, take them out of the oven.
  • Add the carrots to the chicken broth. Cook uncovered until carrots easily fall apart when pressed by a fork.
  • Add soup to a blender, Take the center cap off of your blender lid and cover with a towel. Blend in two batches and puree.
  • Season with salt and pepper to taste, and serve. Garnish with a dollop of sour cream and a few leaves of Italian parsley

Nutrition

Serving: 2cups | Calories: 504kcal | Carbohydrates: 28g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 43g | Sodium: 1221mg | Fiber: 7g
Overhead shot of three bowls of carrot soup with sour cream swirled in them.

How to Make Carrot Soup – Step by Step Photos

Overhead shot of sliced raw carrots in a sheet pan.

Preheat your oven to 400°F. Peel the 2 pounds of carrots and cut them into 1/4 inch rounds. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons olive oil and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Roast the carrots at 400°F for about 35 minutes until they have softened and caramelized.

Overhead shot of butter browning.

While the carrots roast, dice the onion. Add 4 tablespoons of salted butter to a Dutch oven and cook over medium heat until it foams and the milk solids start to brown. Add 1 teaspoon of thyme and let it cook for a minute.

Overhead shot of butter browning.

Add the diced onion to the browned butter and thyme. Cook the onion until they it is translucent, about two minutes.

Overhead shot of chicken stock being poured into soup base.

Add the 3 cups of chicken broth and the 3 cups of water. Scrape up any brown bits stuck to the bottom of the pot. Cover and simmer with the lid on until the carrots are ready.

Overhead shot of sheet pan with roasted carrots.

Once the carrots have started to caramelize, take them out of the oven.

Overhead shot of carrots cooking in cream mixture.

Add the roasted carrots to the chicken broth mixture. Simmer until they soften so much they fall apart easily when pressed by a fork.

Overhead shot of blended carrot soup.

Before blending the soup, remove the center cap off of your lid and cover the hole with a kitchen towel. Add half of the soup to the blender and puree. Repeat.

Overhead shot of carrot soup in a white bowl with sour cream swirled in it.

Season to taste with salt and pepper. If you’d like to garnish your soup, try it with a dollop of sour cream, some Italian parsley, and black pepper.

Try These Other Great Creamy Soups

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How To Make Sour Cream

If you’ve run out of sour cream and don’t want to run to the store for more- you can make it at home with just two ingredients and a little upper body strength!

The post How To Make Sour Cream appeared first on Budget Bytes.

There’s nothing worse than being in the middle of a recipe that calls for sour cream and opening up the tub only to find it’s almost empty or worse- there’s mold all over it. Luckily, if you’re out of sour cream, you can make your own! All you need is two ingredients and a lot of upper body strength. (I’m exaggerating about the need for muscle tone. I can do it, and I haven’t worked out since the 90s.)

What is sour cream?

First things first- there are two types of sour cream: cultured and acidified. Without getting too sciency, cultured sour cream is made with bacteria, while acidified sour cream is made with an acid. Fun fact: many store-bought sour creams aren’t made from cream at all. They’re made with milk that’s thickened with artificial ingredients. Homemade sour cream doesn’t have artificial thickeners so it will be a little runnier than what you’re used to, but the flavor will be spectacular!

Making Sour Cream From Scratch

Since you probably don’t have a vial of lactic bacteria in your pantry, you’ll need heavy cream and an acid. I like using vinegar, but you can also use lemon juice or buttermilk. You’ll also need a mason jar or another air-tight container. To make sure the container is squeaky clean, boil it for a few minutes, let it cool, and then add your cream and acid. Then cover and shake it (or blend it) until it thickens. That’s it. You’ve made sour cream.

To Ferment Or Not To Ferment

I’m a pretty impatient person, so if I’m using the sour cream for a batter or a dip, I add it a few minutes after I’ve made it because its primary purpose is to add creaminess and flavor. It’s not the star of the show; it’s a background singer. (Like the one chick in Destiny’s Child whose name no one ever remembers.) Now, if it’s the Beyonce of your dish, you’ll want to let it sit for a day on your counter to let the cream ferment and thicken and then refrigerate. To keep it 100, I usually skip fermenting it and just put it in the fridge to thicken overnight. It still tastes great.

How long does it last?

That depends on you. It’s best to store the sour cream in the back of your fridge, not the fridge door, where temperatures fluctuate. If you clean your container well and keep the sour cream at 40 degrees, it should last about two weeks. To keep it fresher longer, store it upside down so it isn’t affected by air. When the cream falls to the lid of the jar, it creates a vacuum, which slows down mold and bacteria growth. You can use this nifty trick on all dairy products that come in a container or a jar. I’m looking at you, cottage cheese.

Some of the things you can make with sour cream

Don’t limit your sour cream to just a topping for baked potatoes or a heap of nachos. It works magic in all sorts of dishes. You can use it in sweet and savory preparations to add tang, moisture, and tenderize. It’s the little cream that could.

Overhead shot of a wooden bowl with sour cream in it that's topped with chives and is surrounded by potato chips.

How To Make Sour Cream

If you've run out of sour cream and don't want to run to the store for more—you can make it at home with just two ingredients: heavy cream and vinegar!
Course condiment
Total Cost $1.42 recipe
Prep Time 5 minutes
Resting Time 12 hours
Total Time 12 hours 5 minutes
Servings 1 cup
Calories 812kcal
Author Monti – Budget Bytes

Ingredients

  • 1 cup heavy cream $1.40
  • 1 Tbsp vinegar $0.02

Instructions

  • Add the cream to a mason jar or other airtight container.
  • Add the vinegar to the cream.
  • Close the container and shake it for a minute or two, until the cream thickens.
  • Use the cream right away or leave the jar on your counter overnight to ferment and thicken.*

Notes

*Leave it out on your counter overnight if you want tangier, thicker sour cream. I usually shake it and pop it in the fridge, where it will thicken in a few hours.

Nutrition

Serving: 1cup | Calories: 812kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 86g | Sodium: 65mg

How to Make Sour Cream – Step by Step Photos

Add the cream to a mason jar or other airtight container.

Add the vinegar (or lemon juice) to the cream.

Close the container and shake it for a minute or two until the cream thickens.

Use the cream right away or leave the jar (with the mouth covered in cheesecloth or other lightweight cloth and secured with a rubberband) on your counter overnight to ferment and thicken.

Overhead shot of a wooden bowl with sour cream in it that's topped with chives and is surrounded by potato chips.

Now your deliciously fresh homemade sour cream is ready to use in your favorite recipe!

Here are some great recipes to use up your sour cream:

Looking for more easy how-to’s? Check these out:

The post How To Make Sour Cream appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Peach Galette

This stunning peach galette is stupid-easy to make. It’s my favorite way to showcase succulent summer peaches. You can use my simple three-ingredient pie dough recipe for the crust or opt for store-bought pie dough to get this luscious dessert on the table in under an hour.

The post Peach Galette appeared first on Budget Bytes.

This stunning peach galette is stupid-easy to make. It’s my favorite way to showcase succulent summer peaches. You can use my simple three-ingredient pie dough recipe for the crust or opt for store-bought pie dough to get this luscious dessert on the table in under an hour.

Overhead shot of peach galette surrounded by fresh peaches.

What is a galette?

Galette is French for a free-form pastry with a sweet or savory filling. It’s baked on a sheet pan, not a pie pan. It’s the perfect way to use a bounty of juicy, ripe peaches. It’s an absolute cinch to put together and looks gorgeous on your table for the three seconds it takes before it gets gobbled up.

How to pick a ripe peach

Skip pale yellow peaches and opt for fruit that has a deep golden color. It should feel heavy for its size, and the flesh should be firm but still have a bit of a give. The skin around the stem should be slightly wrinkled, and the fruit should have a robust honey-like aroma.

Can I use frozen, canned, or jarred peaches?

If prepping fresh peaches seems like too much work, or if you simply don’t have access to them, opt for two pounds of frozen. You can use canned or jarred but opt for ones without added sugar. Drain them and pat them dry. If all you have are peaches packed in syrup, rinse them off, pat them dry, and lower the sugar in the recipe to ¼ cup. 

Overhead shot of slice of peach galette on a wood plate with a dollop of whipped cream.

How do I serve a peach galette?

With pride! You can serve it warm or cold, though warm is so much better. I love finishing a peach galette with a pinch of flaky salt. Then I serve the slices with a dollop of homemade whipped cream and a drizzle of honey. It also goes well with a scoop of no-churn strawberry ice cream and chopped pistachios. If you want to get real fancy with it, serve it with a chilled glass of rosé. OH, YOU’RE WELCOME.

How to store leftovers

A galette is best enjoyed the day it’s made, but if you manage some sort of self-control, first email me your secret. Then wrap any leftovers in parchment or wax paper and store them in an air-tight container at room temperature for up to two days. There is NO WAY they will last any longer than that, so stop showing off your superior craving control and don’t even bother asking me about freezing.

Side view shot of slice of peach galette being lifted by a pie spatula.
Overhead shot of peach galette with one slice being removed.

Peach Galette

This stunning peach galette is stupid-easy to make. With the help of a pre-made pie crust, you can get it on the table in about an hour.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Total Cost ($8.16 recipe / $1.02 serving)
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 8 slices
Calories 320kcal
Author Monti – Budget Bytes

Ingredients

  • 1 double pie crust* $1.34
  • 8 peaches $6.24
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract $0.26
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar $0.19
  • 2 tbsp corn starch $0.02
  • 1 tbsp heavy cream $0.09

Instructions

  • Place a rack in the middle of your oven and preheat to 400°F. Moisten your countertop and place a 15×15-inch sheet of parchment paper on it. Dust the parchment paper lightly with flour.
  • Place the pie dough on the parchment paper and roll it out to 14 inches in diameter. Use a fork to poke a few holes in the center of the dough.
  • Transfer the pie dough on the parchment paper to a sheet pan and chill it in the freezer while you prepare the peaches.
  • Slice the peaches, skin on, into 1/2 inch thick slices. Place the slices in a large bowl and drizzle with vanilla. Mix the sugar and cornstarch, then sprinkle over the peaches.
  • Toss the peaches gently to cover them in the sugar mixture, then place them in a mesh sieve set over the large bowl. Macerate the peaches until they release their juices, about fifteen minutes.
  • Add the juices to a small pot set over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Do not stir. Swirl the juices. Once the juices thicken, remove them from the heat.
  • Remove the chilled pie dough from the freezer and layer it with the peach slices, working from the center out. Leave a four-inch border. Top the peaches with the cooled caramel.
  • Fold the outer lip of the dough over the peaches, pleating it where necessary. Lightly brush a thin layer of heavy cream onto the top of the galette.
  • Bake for 40 minutes, or until the crust is crispy and golden.
  • Cool the galette on the sheet pan for fifteen minutes before serving. Use the edges of the parchment paper to help you lift it off the sheet pan.

Notes

*You can substitute with store-bought pie dough, the kind that comes with two crusts.
If using store-bought pie dough:
  • Roll out two smaller rounds on separate pieces of parchment, each about 9 inches in diameter.
  • Use a fork to poke holes in the center of each crust, leaving a three-inch border.
  • Divide the peaches between the two chilled crusts. Leave a three-inch border.

Nutrition

Serving: 1slice | Calories: 320kcal | Carbohydrates: 50g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 12g | Sodium: 194mg | Fiber: 3g
Overhead shot of peach galette with one slice being removed.

How to Make Peach Galette – Step by Step Photos

Overhead shot of rolled out pie dough.

Place a rack in the middle of your oven and preheat to 400°F. Moisten your countertop with a sprinkle of water, place a 15×15-inch sheet of parchment paper on it, dust it with flour, and place the pie dough on top. Roll the dough into a 14-inch circle, about 1/4 inch thick, and use a fork to poke a few holes in the center. Transfer the pie dough on the parchment paper to a sheet pan and chill it in the freezer.

Overhead shot of sugar cornstarch mixture being sprinkled onto peaches with a tablespoon measure.

Cut the peaches with their skin on into 1/2 inch thick slices. Place the slices in a large bowl and drizzle with vanilla. Mix the sugar with the cornstarch, then sprinkle the sugar mixture over the peaches.

Overhead shot of wo hands tossing peaches with sugar mixture in a white bowl.

Toss the peaches gently to cover them in the sugar mixture. Place the peaches in a mesh sieve and place it over the large bowl. Macerate the peaches for about fifteen minutes until they release their juices.

Overhead shot of peach juice being strained into a pot.

Take the juices (not the peaches) and simmer them in a small pot. Do not stir, as this will crystallize the caramel. Occasionally pick up the pan to swirl the juices. Once the juices thicken and turn a golden brown, remove them from the heat.

Overhead shot of peach juice caramel being drizzled onto sliced peaches arranged on pie dough.

Remove the chilled pie dough from the freezer. Layer the peach slices on the dough, working from the center out. Leave a four-inch border. Top the peaches with the cooled caramel.

Overhead shot of pie dough edges being folded over peaches.

Fold the outer lip of the dough over the peaches, pleating it where necessary. You’re not looking for perfection here; that’s the beauty of a galette. Lightly brush a thin layer of heavy cream onto the top of the galette.

Overhead shot of baked peach galette.

Bake for 40 minutes, or until the crust is crispy and golden. Cool the galette on the sheet pan for fifteen minutes before serving. Use the edges of the parchment paper to help you lift it off the sheet pan.

Side shot of slice of peach galette on a pie spatula.

I mean, is this the prettiest thing you’ve seen all day or what?!?!?!? Eight servings for under $10 and JUST SIX INGREDIENTS. This one’s gonna be on repeat for a while.

The post Peach Galette appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Chicken Alfredo

This Chicken Alfredo features pasta drenched in an ultra-rich and creamy sauce and topped with juicy strips of seared chicken.

The post Chicken Alfredo appeared first on Budget Bytes.

When it comes to indulgent comfort foods, I don’t know if anything beats Chicken Alfredo. I just can’t say no to a big ol’ plate of carby pasta drenched in an ultra-rich and creamy sauce and topped with juicy strips of seared chicken, can you? (That was a rhetorical question.) And now that I know how easy it is to make it at home, I have a feeling this is going to become my new favorite special occasion meal. And yes, sometimes just making it through to the end of the week is a special occasion in this house. ;)

close up overhead view of a bowl full of chicken alfredo pasta.

Can I Substitute the Heavy Cream?

While authentic alfredo doesn’t use any heavy cream, this American alfredo does use heavy cream as the base for the sauce, which helps the Parmesan melt in smoothly instead of clumping or sticking to the bottom of the pan. Most other dairy products or dairy substitutes contain too much water to allow the cheese to melt into the sauce properly, so I do not suggest substituting the heavy cream.

Fresh vs. Grated Parmesan

Freshly shredded Parmesan always trumps grated Parmesan from a can, there’s no argument there, but we’re cooking on a budget here so I made sure this recipe tastes great even when using less expensive Parmesan. If you have room in your budget for a wedge of fresh Parmesan, by all means, use it! But just know that you can still make a tasty alfredo even if you can’t afford the good stuff.

What to Serve with Chicken Alfredo

With any heavy dish like this, I like to pair it with a light and simple side salad. The delicate texture and fresh flavor of a simple side salad perfectly balances the thick and creamy alfredo sauce. Some Lemon Garlic Roasted Asparagus or Lemon Pepper Zucchini would also pair well. And of course, it wouldn’t be pasta night without some homemade garlic bread!

How Are the Leftovers?

The rich nature of this sauce means that it does start to thicken up quite a bit as it cools, so you definitely want to serve and enjoy this pasta when it’s hot out of the skillet. That being said, I would never turn down the leftovers of something so creamy and delicious. Just know that the texture when reheated will not be as silky smooth.

Close up side view of chicken alfredo in the skillet.
Overhead view of chicken alfredo in the skillet.

Chicken Alfredo

This Chicken Alfredo features pasta drenched in an ultra-rich and creamy sauce, topped with juicy strips of seared chicken.
Course Dinner
Cuisine American
Total Cost $10.62 recipe / $2.66 serving
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 756kcal
Author Beth – Budget Bytes

Ingredients

  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 1.3 lb. total) $6.49
  • 2 tsp Italian seasoning $0.20
  • 1 Tbsp cooking oil $0.04
  • 2 Tbsp butter $0.22
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced $0.32
  • 1 cup heavy cream $1.25
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan $1.08
  • 1/4 tsp salt $0.02
  • 1/4 tsp pepper $0.02
  • 1 Tbsp chopped parsley (optional garnish) $0.10
  • 8 oz. fettuccine $0.88

Instructions

  • Season both sides of the chicken breast with Italian seasoning and a pinch of salt.
  • Heat a large skillet over medium. Once hot, add the cooking oil and swirl to coat the surface. Add the chicken to the skillet and cook for about 7-8 minutes on each side, or until browned on the outside and cooked through.
  • Remove the chicken to a clean plate and turn the heat under the skillet down to medium-low.
  • Add the butter and minced garlic to the skillet. Stir and cook the garlic in the melted butter for about two minutes, dissolving the browned bits from the bottom of the skillet as you stir.
  • Add the heavy cream and whisk to combine, dissolving any remaining browned bits. Allow the cream to come up to a simmer.
  • While waiting for the cream to simmer, bring a pot of water to a boil for the fettuccine. Once boiling, add the pasta and continue to boil until tender (about 7 minutes). Reserve about ½ cup of the starchy cooking water just before draining the pasta.
  • Once the cream is simmering, add the grated Parmesan to the skillet. Continue to whisk and stir until the Parmesan has melted into the sauce and the sauce has begun to simmer. Simmer the sauce for a few minutes, or until it becomes slightly thicker. Add salt and pepper to the sauce to taste.
  • Add the drained pasta to the skillet with the creamy sauce and toss to combine. If the sauce becomes too thick, add a couple of tablespoons of the reserved pasta water and toss to combine with the sauce.
  • Slice the cooked chicken breasts and serve it atop the creamy pasta. Garnish with chopped parsley, if desired.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 756kcal | Carbohydrates: 46g | Protein: 47g | Fat: 42g | Sodium: 719mg | Fiber: 2g

Love alfredo? Check out our Shrimp Alfredo, too!

Overhead view of chicken alfredo in the skillet.

How to Make Chicken Alfredo – Step by Step Photos

Seasoned chicken breast on a cutting board.

Season two boneless, skinless chicken breasts with two teaspoons of Italian Seasoning and a pinch of salt.

Seared chicken in the skillet.

Heat a large skillet over medium. Once fully preheated, add 1 Tablespoon of cooking oil and swirl to coat the skillet. Add the chicken breasts and cook on each side for 7-8 minutes, or until the chicken is well browned and cooked through. Remove the chicken to a clean plate.

Butter and minced garlic in the skillet.

Turn the heat down to medium-low, then add 2 tablespoons of butter and 4 cloves of minced garlic to the skillet.

Deglazed pan with butter and garlic.

Cook and stir the butter and garlic over medium-low heat for about 2 minutes, dissolving the browned bits as you stir.

Heavy cream being poured into the skillet.

Add one cup of heavy cream to the skillet and stir to combine. Turn the heat up to medium and bring the cream up to a simmer.

A box of fettuccine open on one end with pasta coming out

Meanwhile, bring a pot of water to a boil for the pasta. Once boiling, add 8oz. of pasta and continue to boil until the pasta is tender. Reserve ½ cup of the starchy pasta water before draining the pasta in a colander.

Parmesan being added to the skillet.

While waiting for the pasta to boil, continue with the sauce. Once the cream is simmering, add ¾ cup Parmesan and continue to stir and cook until the sauce comes back up to a simmer.

Finished alfredo sauce in the skillet.

When the sauce comes back up to a simmer the Parmesan will begin to melt. Continue to cook and stir until the sauce thickens slightly (3-5 minutes). Add salt and pepper to the sauce to taste.

Fettuccine being tossed in the cream sauce.

Add the cooked and drained pasta to the alfredo sauce and toss to combine. If the sauce is too thick or too dry, add a few tablespoons of the reserved pasta water and toss to combine.

Sliced chicken added on top of the pasta alfredo.

Slice the chicken breast and add it on top of the pasta, then serve. (You can garnish with chopped parsley if desired).

Overhead view of chicken alfredo in a shallow bowl with a fork.

The post Chicken Alfredo appeared first on Budget Bytes.

No-Churn Strawberry Ice Cream

Looking for an easy, budget-friendly dessert that’ll help you beat the summer heat? This dangerously delicious, no-churn strawberry ice cream recipe is a winner!

The post No-Churn Strawberry Ice Cream appeared first on Budget Bytes.

What if I told you that you don’t need to buy a fancy appliance to make your own homemade ice cream?? Not only is this simple homemade ice cream delicious, but you can make so many different flavors and it’s just a super fun summer project. This year we took advantage of some of the season’s fresh strawberries to make this dangerously delicious, no-churn strawberry ice cream, and it might be my favorite flavor yet. So make sure to bookmark this recipe for this weekend. You’ll be so happy to have some homemade ice cream stashed away in your freezer later. ;)

Side view of a hand holding a no-churn strawberry ice cream cone.

What Does No-Churn Mean?

No-churn simply means you don’t need an ice cream maker to make this INSANELY easy dessert. The ice cream base doesn’t need to be continuously stirred as it freezes to stay soft and fluffy, and you don’t need to stand over a stove gently simmering and stirring eggs, cream, and sugar into a smooth custard. Halleloo! Whipping the ingredients together before freezing helps keep the ice crystals small and the ice cream smooth and delicious.

With just five ingredients and a hand mixer, this recipe will give you delectable, velvety results. This ice cream is so good I make a double batch because I know that despite my best efforts, I will devour most of it in one sitting.

How Do You Flavor Ice Cream?

There are two ways to flavor your no-churn ice cream. You can flavor the ice cream base or you can swirl flavorful ingredients into the whipped ice cream just before freezing. To keep this recipe simple, we flavored the base with just a touch of vanilla, then swirled in strawberries and strawberry syrup just before freezing.

If you don’t have fresh strawberries or don’t want to make your own strawberry syrup, you can swirl in a little thinned-out strawberry jam. Simply loosen up the strawberry jam by stirring in a little warm water until it is just loose enough to run off a spoon. Then swirl it in as we did with the strawberry syrup below.

What Keeps No-Churn Ice Cream Soft?

Ice cream made in an ice cream maker is slowly churned as it freezes, which incorporates air into the mixture and keeps the ice crystals really small as they form. With no-churn ice cream, the mixture is whipped before freezing to incorporate the air, and the high fat and sugar content of the base helps prevent large ice crystals from forming as it freezes. It’s so incredibly easy and the results are so fantastic, you’ll be glad you didn’t drop $$$ on that ice cream machine.

Love no-churn ice cream? Try these other no-churn ice cream flavors: Balsamic Peach Ice Cream or Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream.

No Churn Strawberry Ice Cream being scooped out of the baking dish.
Close up side view of a strawberry ice cream cone.

No-Churn Strawberry Ice Cream

Looking for an easy, budget-friendly, dessert to help beat the summer heat? This delicious no-churn strawberry ice cream recipe is a winner!
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Total Cost $6.60 recipe / $0.94 serving
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Freeze Time 8 hours
Total Time 8 hours 20 minutes
Servings 7 1 cup each
Calories 471kcal
Author Beth – Budget Bytes

Ingredients

Strawberry Syrup

  • 1 lb. fresh strawberries, divided $1.99
  • 1/3 cup sugar (granulated) $0.05
  • 1/8 tsp vanilla extract $0.06
  • 1 pinch salt $0.01

Ice Cream Base

  • 1 14oz. can sweetened condensed milk $1.59
  • 1 pint heavy whipping cream $2.39
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract $0.50
  • 1 pinch salt $0.01

Instructions

  • Make the strawberry syrup first. Wash the strawberries and remove the green tops. Dice the strawberries into ¼-inch pieces. Reserve half of the chopped strawberries to fold into the ice cream later.
  • Add the other half of the diced strawberries to a sauce pot with the sugar. Stir and cook over medium heat until the strawberries release their liquid and form a syrup in the saucepot.
  • Let the strawberries simmer in the syrup, stirring occasionally until they break down and lose their shape and the syrup has thickened slightly. You'll know it's ready when you drag a wooden spoon across the bottom center of the pot and the syrup stays parted for a few seconds. Remove the syrup from the heat and stir in the vanilla and salt. Set the strawberry syrup aside to cool.
  • While the syrup is cooling, prepare the ice cream base. Add the sweetened condensed milk, heavy whipping cream, vanilla extract, and salt to a bowl. Use a hand mixer to whip the mixture until it is light and fluffy, and has formed soft peaks.
  • Fold the reserved chopped fresh strawberries into the ice cream base. Transfer the whipped ice cream base to a freezer-safe container. Drizzle the cooled strawberry syrup over the ice cream and gently swirl it into the mixture.
  • Cover the ice cream and freeze for eight hours before scooping and serving.

Nutrition

Serving: 1cup | Calories: 471kcal | Carbohydrates: 47g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 30g | Sodium: 102mg | Fiber: 1g
Close up side view of a strawberry ice cream cone.

How to Make Strawberry Ice Cream – Step by Step Photos

Strawberries being chopped into quarter inch pieces.

Make the strawberry syrup first. Wash the strawberries and remove the green tops from one pound of strawberries. Dice the strawberries into ¼-inch pieces. Reserve half of the chopped strawberries to fold into the ice cream later.

Chopped strawberries in pot with sugar.

Add the other half of the diced strawberries to a sauce pot with ⅓ cup sugar.

Strawberries releasing their liquid and turning into syrup.

Stir and cook over medium heat until the strawberries release their liquid and form a syrup in the saucepot and the mixture comes up to a simmer.

Strawberry syrup in a pot with a spoon in it.

Let the strawberries simmer in the syrup, stirring occasionally until they break down and lose their shape, and the syrup has thickened slightly. You’ll know it’s ready when you drag a wooden spoon across the bottom center of the pot and the syrup stays parted for a few seconds. Remove the syrup from the heat and stir in the vanilla and salt. Set the strawberry syrup aside to cool.

Combine heavy cream, condensed milk, vanilla, and salt in a bowl.

While the syrup is cooling, prepare the ice cream base. Add one 14oz. can of sweetened condensed milk, one pint of heavy whipping cream, 1 tsp vanilla extract, and a pinch of salt to a bowl.

Whipping heavy cream mixture into soft peaks.

Use a hand mixer to whip the mixture until it is light and fluffy, and has formed soft peaks (when you lift the beaters out of the mixture it will form a gentle peak that slumps over to the side).

Folding chopped strawberries into whipped cream mixture.

Fold the reserved chopped fresh strawberries into the ice cream base.

The ice cream base is spooned into a freezer-safe container.

Transfer the whipped ice cream base to a freezer-safe container.

Strawberry syrup is being swirled into the ice cream base in a freezer-safe container.

Spoon the cooled strawberry syrup over the ice cream and gently swirl it into the mixture. Don’t over mix it! :)

Strawberry ice cream that's been frozen for eight hours and is ready to serve.

Cover the ice cream and freeze for eight hours before scooping and serving.

Overhead view of ice cream being scooped out of the dish.

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Hot Fudge Sauce Recipe

This homemade hot fudge sauce recipe couldn’t be easier or more delicious. It’s sure to be your favorite ice cream topping all summer long. When I was a kid, we briefly lived with my great grandmother, Lottie. She was a magnificent woman and an incredible cook. I was quite young – about 5 or so, …

The post Hot Fudge Sauce Recipe appeared first on My Baking Addiction.

This homemade hot fudge sauce recipe couldn’t be easier or more delicious. It’s sure to be your favorite ice cream topping all summer long.

Spoon drizzling hot fudge sauce back into a jar of the sauce.

When I was a kid, we briefly lived with my great grandmother, Lottie. She was a magnificent woman and an incredible cook. I was quite young – about 5 or so, but I have some pretty vivid memories of the time we spent in her home.

I remember sitting at her dining room table and coloring for hours with the crayons she kept in an old coffee can, and an old fashioned rotary phone that sat on her perfectly organized desk. 

Her home was immaculate and I remember giggling every time she told me to keep my feet off of her davenport.

She had a drawer devoted to her beloved baking tools, and even went so far as to purchase a set of miniature tools just for me. She’d neatly pull my hair back and keep it out of my face with a babushka, and then put a ball of dough in front of me. 

We’d sit at the kitchen table for hours, rolling dough and cutting perfect circles with the top of a glass. Then we’d fill, fold, and crimp each of the dough circles to create the most amazing pierogies.

On summer evenings, we’d all load up into the car and head to the ice cream parlor.

I was always a caramel sundae kind of girl, but I remember snagging bites of my dad’s Tin Roof Sundaes that were slathered in the most incredible hot fudge sauce. And even though I’ve never been much of a hot fudge kind of girl myself, Elle can’t get enough of all things chocolate.

And during the summers she is all about ice cream, especially when it’s topped with a bit of chocolate sauce, Reddi Wip, sprinkles, and – of course – a cherry.

Whether you’re out of the jarred stuff or just craving a rich, chocolatey, homemade treat for your favorite ice cream, this homemade hot fudge sauce should definitely be on your summer bucket list!

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Easy Skillet Chicken Thighs

I have a winner, winner chicken dinner for you! This Easy Skillet Chicken Thigh recipe is a family favorite and takes less than 30 minutes to make! We make this chicken recipe all of the time because it is so simple and the chicken is SO juicy. It turn…

I have a winner, winner chicken dinner for you! This Easy Skillet Chicken Thigh recipe is a family favorite and takes less than 30 minutes to make! We make this chicken recipe all of the time because it is so simple and the chicken is SO juicy. It turns out perfect every single time. If…

Homemade Scalloped Potatoes

Creamy, decadent Homemade Scalloped Potatoes are right at home alongside your holiday ham. This dish is deceptively simple to make but will impress all of your dinner guests. This post contains affiliate links. I’ve never met a potato that I didn’t like.  Knowing how to bake potatoes is obviously a must, and I can’t get …

The post Homemade Scalloped Potatoes appeared first on My Baking Addiction.

Creamy, decadent Homemade Scalloped Potatoes are right at home alongside your holiday ham. This dish is deceptively simple to make but will impress all of your dinner guests.

Close up of scalloped potatoes next to a fork, asparagus and ham on a white plate

This post contains affiliate links.

I’ve never met a potato that I didn’t like. 

Knowing how to bake potatoes is obviously a must, and I can’t get enough of Garlic Mashed Potatoes or Air Fryer Roasted Potatoes

And that’s not even mentioning tots. Let’s just say we could have a sub-site called My Tater Tot Addiction without much effort.

Growing up, scalloped potatoes often frequented our dinner table and were usually peppered with pieces of leftover ham or slices of kielbasa. It was a quick, inexpensive dinner that was sure to please everyone around the table.

I remember searching for a homemade scalloped potatoes recipe a number of years ago. I actually remember doubting the recipes because I thought there was no way something so incredibly rich, decadent and delicious could be so simple. I was wrong.

Homemade Scalloped Potatoes are not only easy, they are also quite inexpensive and versatile. The beauty of scalloped potatoes is that although they are simple and economical, they can also be quite impressive – which makes them perfect for gracing any holiday table from Easter to Christmas.

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Creamy Pesto Chicken

Creamy pesto chicken is a fast, easy, and impressive main dish for dinner, whether you just want to treat yourself or impress guests!

The post Creamy Pesto Chicken appeared first on Budget Bytes.

I love using pesto in recipes because it adds tons of flavor in one fell swoop, which is super important when it comes to busy weeknights. This Creamy pesto Chicken is absolutely stunning on the plate, yet it’s super fast and easy. This is another one of those great “date night” dinners for when you want to impress someone, but you’re nervous so you also need something easy and fool-proof. 😅

Overhead view of creamy pesto chicken in the skillet.

What Kind of Pesto to Use

The beauty of this dish is that you can use just about any type of pesto. I used a basil pesto this time around, but a red pesto would also be awesome. Pesto can be on the pricey side, but there are several brands that are a bit more affordable. Look for Alessi, Barilla, Classico, or Filippo Berio.

What Else Can I Add?

This deliciously creamy pesto sauce pairs well with several different ingredients, if you want to take this dish up a notch. Try adding spinach, artichokes, or broccoli for some extra veggies. Or if you want to make this dish extra indulgent, add some grated Parmesan on top, too. I probably also wouldn’t be against adding bacon. 😏

What to Serve with Creamy Pesto Chicken

This chicken has a super lush and creamy sauce and you won’t want to waste a single drop, so make sure to serve this chicken with pasta, rice, or garlic bread to soak it all up. You can spoon the chicken and sauce over a bed of pasta or rice, or serve the chicken and sauce in a bowl with some crusty bread for dipping.

Because the sauce is so rich, you’ll definitely want to serve up something light and fresh on the side, so this is the perfect opportunity to make a simple side salad.

side view of sliced creamy pesto chicken on a plate with a salad.
Overhead view of a skillet full of creamy pesto chicken.

Creamy Pesto Chicken

Creamy pesto chicken is a fast, easy, and impressive main dish for dinner, whether you just want to treat yourself or impress guests!
Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine American
Total Cost $10.70 recipe / $2.68 serving
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 415kcal
Author Beth – Budget Bytes

Ingredients

  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breast (about 1.3 lb. total) $6.59
  • 1/8 tsp salt $0.01
  • 1/8 tsp pepper $0.01
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil, divided $0.32
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced $0.16
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes, sliced in half $2.00
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream $0.62
  • 1/4 cup pesto $0.99

Instructions

  • Fillet the chicken breasts into two thinner pieces (or pound the chicken to an even thickness then cut each breast in half to create four portions). Season the chicken with a pinch of salt and pepper on both sides.
  • Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add 1 Tbsp oil and swirl to coat the surface. Add the chicken to the skillet and cook on each side until golden brown and cooked through (about 7-10 minutes total). Remove the chicken to a clean plate.
  • Turn the heat down to medium-low. Add the remaining olive oil to the skillet along with the minced garlic and halved grape tomatoes. Sauté for about five minutes, or until the tomatoes start to soften and lose their shape.
  • Add the heavy cream and pesto to the skillet with the tomatoes and stir to combine. Allow the sauce to come up to a simmer. Taste the sauce and adjust the salt or pepper to your liking.
  • Add the chicken back to the skillet with the tomatoes and sauce, turning to coat the chicken. Allow the chicken to simmer in the sauce for just a few minutes more to heat through. Serve hot.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 415kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 34g | Fat: 28g | Sodium: 403mg | Fiber: 2g
Overhead view of creamy pesto chicken on a plate with a salad.

How to Make Creamy Pesto Chicken – Step by Step Photos

filleted chicken breasts on a cutting board.

Fillet two boneless, skinless chicken breasts into two thinner pieces (or you can pound the chicken to an even thickness and then cut each piece in half horizontally to make four portions). Season the chicken with a pinch of salt and pepper on both sides.

browned chicken breasts in a skillet.

Heat a large skillet over medium. Once hot, add a tablespoon of olive oil and swirl to coat the surface. Add the chicken breast and cook on each side until golden brown and cooked through (7-10 minutes total). Remove the chicken to a clean plate.

Tomatoes and garlic in the skillet.

Reduce the heat to medium-low, then add the remaining 1 Tbsp oil, 1 pint of grape tomatoes (halved) and 2 cloves of garlic (minced). Sauté the tomatoes and garlic in the skillet for a few minutes, or until the tomatoes begin to soften and lose their shape.

Pesto and cream added to the skillet with the tomatoes.

Add ¼ cup pesto and ½ cup heavy cream to the skillet. Stir to combine. Allow the sauce to come up to a simmer. Taste the sauce and add salt or pepper if needed.

Chicken added back to the skillet with the creamy basil sauce.

Add the chicken back to the skillet and coat it in the sauce. Simmer the chicken in the sauce for a few more minutes or until heated through.

Side view of creamy pesto chicken in the skillet.

This sauce is so creamy and delicious, you’ll want to lick your plate!

Creamy pesto chicken on a plate with pasta and a salad.

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