Slow Cooker Pulled Pork

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork is an easy way to cook the most tender and juicy pork ever. It’s great on tacos, sandwiches, burritos and more.

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Something truly magical happens when you cook pork low and slow. It turns into the most mouth-watering tender and juicy meat you’ve ever had. And meat this tender is good with everything, so if you make this Slow Cooker Pulled Pork on Sunday, you’ll have meat to last you all week. Pile that slow cooker pork onto sandwiches, tacos, bowl meals, nachos, salads, and more for quick dinners the rest of the week!

Slow cooker pulled pork on a plate with tongs and sandwich fixings on the sides.

What Kind of Pork to Use for Pulled Pork

To get the juiciest and most tender pulled pork make sure to buy a pork butt or pork shoulder. These cuts are marbled with fat and connective tissue that slowly melt and gelatinize when cooked with slow, gentle heat, creating ultra moist and tender meat.

You can buy bone-in or boneless pork butt or pork shoulder. I prefer to use boneless and then cut the pork into large pieces so they cook a little faster, but you can leave the bone in and remove it when shredding the pork if preferred. Just keep in mind that cooking time may be longer if you leave the bone in during cooking.

How to Season Pulled Pork

I used a versatile yet flavorful spice rub on the pork before slow cooking, along with a little extra fresh garlic. This mix of paprika, garlic, onion, salt, pepper, and brown sugar enhances the pork’s flavor, but keeps it neutral enough to be paired with BBQ sauce or any other flavor profile you plan to pair with your pulled pork.

Three slow cooker pulled pork sandwiches on a wooden cutting board.

How to Serve Pulled Pork

Pulled Pork sandwiches are always a hit (brioche buns, BBQ sauce, pickles, and/or coleslaw), but this pulled pork is also great for tacos, burritos, quesadillas, or nachos. I also love piling pulled pork onto bowl meals, salads, or even adding it to soup or ramen. You can seriously add it to anything!

Storage Instructions

Keep the pork in the juices when refrigerating to keep the meat as moist as possible upon reheating. After cooking, transfer the shredded pork and juices to an air-tight food storage container and refrigerate for up to 4-5 days. After completely chilling in the refrigerator, you can transfer the pork to the freezer for longer storage (about three months). To reheat the pork, simply heat in a sauce pot over medium-low, stirring occasionally, until hot.

Close up side view of a plate full of slow cooker pulled pork.
Three pulled pork sandwiches with pickles on a wooden cutting board.

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork is an easy way to cook the most tender and juicy pork ever. It's great on tacos, sandwiches, burritos and more.
Course Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine American
Total Cost $9.48 recipe / $1.19 serving
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 15 minutes
Servings 8 ½ cup each
Calories 247kcal
Author Beth – Budget Bytes

Equipment

Ingredients

  • 3 lbs. pork butt $8.07
  • 1 yellow onion, cut into chunks $0.37
  • 4 cloves garlic, roughly chopped $0.32

Spice Rub

  • 2 tsp paprika $0.20
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika $0.10
  • 2 Tbsp brown sugar $0.08
  • 1 tsp garlic powder $0.10
  • 1 tsp onion powder $0.10
  • 2 tsp salt $0.10
  • 1/2 tsp freshly cracked black pepper $0.04

Instructions

  • Combine the spices for the spice rub in a bowl.
  • Cut the pork butt into large chunks. If the pork butt has a bone you can either remove it before cooking or wait until you are shredding the cooked meat to remove it. Keep in mind the pork will require extra cooking time if cooking with the bone in.
  • Add the pork pieces to a large bowl and sprinkle the spice rub over top. Toss until the pork is evenly coated in spices.
  • Dice the yellow onion and add it to the bottom of the slow cooker. Place the seasoned pork on top of the onion, then add the roughly chopped garlic on top.
  • Place the lid on the slow cooker and cook on high for four hours or low for eight hours. Test the pork with a fork to make sure the meat is tender. It should shred easily with a fork. If not, cook for one hour longer. The total cooking time will depend on the size of your pork butt.
  • Once the pork is tender, use two forks to shred the meat.
  • If you prefer crispy edges on your pork, place some of the pork on a sheet pan and broil for a few minutes, or just until the edges are browned and crispy. Keep a close eye on the pork as it broils!
  • Serve the pulled pork on sandwiches, tacos, bowl meals, and more!

Nutrition

Serving: 0.5cup | Calories: 247kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 32g | Fat: 10g | Sodium: 694mg | Fiber: 0.5g
BBQ sauce being poured onto pulled pork sandwiches.

How to Make Slow Cooker Pulled Pork – Step by Step Photos

Spices for pulled pork in a small wooden bowl.

To make the spice rub for the pulled pork, combine 2 Tbsp brown sugar, 2 tsp paprika, 1 tsp smoked paprika, 1 tsp garlic powder, 1 tsp onion powder, 2 tsp salt, and ½ tsp freshly cracked black pepper.

Chunks of pork butt on a cutting board.

Cut a 3 lb. pork butt into large chunks. If your pork butt is bone-in, you can either remove the bone or cook with the bone in and remove it when shredding your meat. Keep in mind that if you leave the bone in, the pork will take slightly longer to cook.

Meat coated with spices in a bowl.

Place the pork in a bowl, sprinkle the spice rub over top, then toss until the pork is evenly coated in the rub.

Diced onion in the slow cooker.

Dice one yellow onion and place it on the bottom of the slow cooker.

Pork in slow cooker with chopped garlic,

Place the seasoned pork in the slow cooker and top with four roughly chopped cloves of garlic.

Cooked pork in the slow cooker.

Place the lid on the slow cooker and cook on high for four hours or low for eight hours. If your pork butt is larger than 3 lbs. you may need to cook slightly longer. Check the tenderness of the meat after 4 hours on high or 8 hours on low. It should pull apart easily. If it’s still tough, let it cook another hour then check again.

Shredded pork in the slow cooker, some being lifted with tongs.

Once the pork is tender, use two forks to shred the meat.

Broiled pulled pork on a baking sheet.

If you want crispy edges on your pulled pork (who doesn’t?!). Place some of the pulled pork on a baking sheet and place it under your oven’s broiler for a few minutes. The melted fat on the pork will fry the edges and make it beautifully crispy! Keep a close eye on the meat as it broils since broilers cook very quickly!

Three pulled pork sandwiches with pickles on a wooden cutting board.

Enjoy your pulled pork on sandwiches, tacos, bowl meals, quesadillas and more!

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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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Honey Chipotle Chicken

The marinade for this sweet, smoky, and spicy Honey Chipotle Chicken is simple and delicious! It’s an easy and flavorful dinner main dish!

The post Honey Chipotle Chicken appeared first on Budget Bytes.

A few weeks ago I made some delicious Chipotle Peach Salsa, but I never seem to use a whole can of chipotle peppers for one recipe, so I make a habit of freezing the rest to save for other recipes. And today I used up some of those leftover chipotle peppers in this super easy and delish Honey Chipotle Chicken. ;) I love quick pan-seared chicken as a simple dinner main, so I whipped up a quick honey-chipotle marinade and then seared the marinated chicken until the marinade turned into a light glaze. The result was a sweet-smoky-spicy chicken with the most deliciously caramelized finish. So, if you find yourself with some extra canned chipotle peppers, you’ve got to try this chicken!

Honey Chipotle Chicken thighs in a skillet from above.

What’s in the Honey Chipotle Marinade

I like to keep things simple, so I whipped up this super simple yet flavorful marinade using canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, honey, lime juice, salt, garlic, and oil. It’s got all the elements: salt, fat, acid, and heat! …and a little sweetness to round it out. ;)

How Long to Marinade the Chicken

I suggest marinating this chicken for a minimum of 30 minutes, but if you prep this in the morning or even the night before, even better! Just make sure to flip the chicken a couple of times as it marinades to maximize contact with all the flavorful ingredients, and refrigerate as you marinade if marinating longer than one hour.

Can I Use Chicken Breasts

You can use this honey chipotle marinade on chicken breasts, just keep in mind that you’ll want to prepare the breasts a little differently than the thighs to make sure they don’t dry out too much. I recommend either filleting the breasts into two thinner pieces or pounding them until they are an even thickness, about ¾-inch thick. This will ensure that the chicken cooks through before the sugars in the marinade begin to burn.

That being said, chicken thighs are WAY more forgiving. The high-fat content of the thighs keeps them juicy and tender, even if they need to be in the skillet a little bit longer. I’m definitely team #chickenthighs for this recipe!

What to Serve with Honey Chipotle Chicken

I served my honey chipotle chicken with my favorite bean salad, Cowboy Caviar, and some rice, but you’ve got lots of options here! You could whip up a simple Avocado and Tomato Salad, Sweet Corn Salsa, or maybe some Cucumber and Black Bean Salad. I also think this sweet and spicy chicken would be a great topper for something like my Loaded Mashed Potato Bowls!

A piece of honey chipotle chicken on a bed of rice with bean salad on the side.
Overhead view of honey chipotle chicken in the skillet.

Honey Chipotle Chicken

The marinade for this sweet, smoky, and spicy Honey Chipotle Chicken is simple and delicious! It's an easy and flavorful dinner main dish!
Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine American, Southwest
Total Cost $8.61 recipe / $1.44 serving
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Marinate Time 30 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 6 thighs
Calories 205kcal
Author Beth – Budget Bytes

Ingredients

  • 3 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce $0.30
  • 2 Tbsp honey $0.54
  • 2 Tbsp lime juice (about one lime) $0.59
  • 1 clove garlic, minced $0.08
  • 1/2 tsp salt $0.02
  • 2 Tbsp cooking oil, divided $0.08
  • 6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs $6.78
  • 2 sliced green onions (optional) $0.22

Instructions

  • Mince the chipotle peppers. Combine the minced peppers in a bowl with the honey, lime juice, minced garlic, salt, and 1 Tbsp cooking oil.
  • Place the chicken thighs in a shallow dish and pour the marinade over top. Toss the chicken in the marinade until evenly coated.
  • Marinate the chicken for a minimum of 30 minutes, up to one day. If marinating longer than one hour, refrigerate the chicken as it marinates.
  • When ready to cook the chicken, heat a large skillet over medium. Once hot, add the remaining 1 Tbsp cooking oil and swirl to coat the surface of the skillet.
  • Add the marinated chicken to the skillet and cook on one side until the water released by the chicken evaporates, the marinade has reduced to a glaze, and the chicken has browned. Flip the chicken over and cook on the second side until browned and cooked through.
  • Top with sliced green onions and serve.

Nutrition

Serving: 1thigh | Calories: 205kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 22g | Fat: 9g | Sodium: 390mg | Fiber: 1g
Close up side view of honey chipotle chicken in a skillet.

How to Make Honey Chipotle Chicken – Step by Step Photos

Can of chipotle peppers open so you can see the peppers in the sauce.

Canned chipotle peppers in adobo are the base for this marinade. You can find these at most major grocery stores in the U.S., usually near the other Hispanic ingredients.

Chopped chipotle peppers

Mince about three chipotle peppers, or about ¼ cup once minced.

honey chipotle marinade in a bowl with a spoon.

Combine the minced chipotle peppers with 2 Tbsp honey, 2 Tbsp lime juice, 1 minced clove of garlic, 1 Tbsp cooking oil, and ½ tsp salt.

honey chipotle marinade being poured over chicken thighs in a dish.

Place six boneless, skinless chicken thighs in a shallow dish, then pour the honey chipotle marinade over top.

Marinating chicken thighs in a shallow dish.

Toss the chicken in the marinade until they’re evenly coated. Marinate the chicken for a minimum of 30 minutes, up to one day. If marinating longer than one hour, make sure to cover and transfer the chicken to the refrigerator.

Chicken thighs cooking in a skillet.

When you’re ready to cook the chicken, heat a large skillet over medium. Once hot, add the remaining 1 Tbsp cooking oil and swirl to coat the surface. Add the chicken thighs and cook over medium until all of the water they release evaporates, the marinade has reduced to a glaze, and the chicken has browned on the bottom.

Finished honey chipotle chicken thighs in the skillet.

Flip the chicken thighs and cook until browned on the other side and cooked through. Flip the chicken back and forth as needed to achieve an even level of browning on both sides. Top with sliced green onions, then serve.

A honey chipotle chicken thigh on a bed of rice on a plate next to bean salad.

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Cheesy Sausage Pasta

Cheesy Sausage Pasta is a quick and easy meal for quick weeknight dinners. Everything cooks in one pot for fast prep and minimum clean-up!

The post Cheesy Sausage Pasta appeared first on Budget Bytes.

This Cheesy Sausage Pasta is the dish that made me fall in love with one-pot pastas all those years ago. It’s fast, easy, SUPER flavorful, and because everything cooks in one pot, there’s barely anything to clean up after dinner. WIN. The flavorful combination of smoky sausage, spicy diced tomatoes with green chiles, and creamy Monterey Jack is simple but irresistible, and it cooks in about 30 minutes. That’s a winner in my book!

Originally posted 1-23-2010, updated 9-10-2022.

Overhead view of a skillet full of cheesy sausage pasta.

What’s in Cheesy Sausage Pasta?

This recipe was inspired by an absolutely mouth-watering photo I saw on Pinterest, which was this Spicy Sausage Pasta from KevinandAmanda.com. But, of course, I made some changes to fit the ingredients I had on hand. I nixed the heavy cream in the original recipe because I figured that between the cheese and sausage, there’d be plenty of fatty goodness going on. My version ended up being rich, but not so much so that you’ll feel super weighed down. I also added fresh spinach because I have a HUGE bag in my fridge just waiting to be used up. Plus, I felt that the recipe needed a little green.

What Else Can I Add?

Some other vegetable options for this recipe are bell peppers or broccoli, both of which go great with smoked sausage. If you want to add bell peppers, dice them up and saute them with the onions in the beginning. If you want to add broccoli, cut it into very small florets and add it with the pasta so that the broccoli can simmer a little bit and soften. There are so many different ways you can take this recipe… I’m excited to hear what you come up with!

What Type of Pasta to Use

This recipe works great with any short pasta shape (bowties, penne, rotini, etc.). I originally used campanelle (my favorite frilly flower shaped pasta), but I couldn’t find any this time around so I decided to go with wide egg noodles. One note: If you are using regular pasta (not egg noodles, which are a little more delicate), you may need slightly more broth.

Can I Use a Different Cheese?

I particularly love Monterey Jack cheese for this recipe because it melts into a super creamy texture that kind of mixes into the sauce for a super creamy finish…without adding any cream. Other cheeses will also taste great, but they probably won’t have the same creamy finish. You can try cheddar, mozzarella (aim for whole milk mozzarella instead of part-skim), or even a sprinkle of crumbled feta. And remember, pre-shredded cheese won’t melt nearly as well as cheese you shred yourself! ;)

Close up side view of cheesy sausage pasta in the skillet.

Cheesy sausage pasta on a plate with a black fork, on a bamboo mat.

Cheesy Sausage Pasta

Cheesy Sausage Pasta is a quick and easy meal for quick weeknight dinners. Everything cooks in one pot for fast prep and minimum clean-up!
Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine American
Total Cost $7.07 recipe / $1.77 serving
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 538kcal
Author Beth - Budget Bytes

Ingredients

  • 1 yellow onion $0.38
  • 7 oz. smoked sausage $1.75
  • 1 Tbsp cooking oil $0.04
  • 1 10oz. can diced tomatoes with green chiles (Rotel) $1.00
  • 8 oz. wide egg noodles* $1.40
  • 1.5 cups chicken broth $0.20
  • 3 cups fresh spinach $0.85
  • 1 cup shredded Monterey Jack $1.25
  • 1 green onion, sliced $0.20

Instructions

  • Dice the onion and slice the sausage into rounds.
  • Add the cooking oil and sausage to a large skillet and cook over medium heat until the sausage is well browned. If there is excess fat in the skillet, drain it off before moving to the next step.
  • Add the diced tomatoes with green chiles (with juices), uncooked pasta, and chicken broth. Stir until everything is evenly combined. It's okay if the broth does not fully cover the pasta.
  • Place a lid on the skillet and allow the broth to come up to a boil. When it reaches a boil, turn the heat down to medium-low and let the pasta simmer for about 10 minutes, or until tender. Stir the pasta occasionally, replacing the lid each time.
  • Once the pasta is cooked and only a small amount of saucy liquid remains, it's time to add the spinach to the skillet. Gently stir the fresh spinach into the pasta, allowing the residual heat to wilt the spinach.
  • Once the spinach has wilted, top the pasta with Monterey Jack cheese. Place the lid back on the skillet and let the pasta heat over low until the cheese is melted and creamy.
  • Sprinkle the sliced green onions over top just before serving.

Notes

*If using regular pasta (not egg noodles), increase the broth to 2 cups.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 538kcal | Carbohydrates: 48g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 28g | Sodium: 956mg | Fiber: 4g

Cheesy sausage pasta on a plate with a black fork, on a bamboo mat.

How to Make Cheesy Sausage Pasta – Step By Step Photos

Diced onion and sliced sausage on a cutting board.

Dice one yellow onion and slice about 7oz. smoked sausage (half of a 14oz. link—you can freeze the rest!) into medallions.

Browned sausage in a skilet.

Add the sausage and 1 Tbsp cooking oil to a large skillet and cook over medium heat until the sausage is well browned. If there’s a lot of excess fat in the skillet, drain it off before proceeding to the next step.

Sautéed onions in the skillet with sausage.

Add the onions to the skillet with the sausage and continue to sauté until the onions have softened. Allow the moisture from the onions to dissolve any browned bits off the bottom of the skillet.

Pasta, tomatoes, and broth added to the skillet.

Add one 10oz. can of diced tomatoes with green chiles (like Rotel), 8 oz. pasta, and 1.5 cups chicken broth. If you’re using regular pasta (not egg noodles), increase to 2 cups broth.

Lid being placed on the skillet.

Stir everything together until well combined. Place a lid on the skillet and allow the broth to come up to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to medium-low and let the pasta simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally (replacing the lid each time). Make sure the broth maintains a simmer.

Cooked pasta pushed to the side of the skillet with the spatula.

While the pasta is cooking, shred about 1 cup of Monterey Jack cheese and slice one green onion. When the pasta is tender and only a small amount of saucy liquid remains in the skillet, it’s time to add the spinach.

Wilted spinach stirred into the pasta.

Add about three packed cups of fresh spinach to the skillet and carefully stir until the hot pasta wilts the spinach.

Cheese being added on top of the pasta.

Add one cup of shredded Monterey Jack cheese on top of the pasta. Place the lid on the skillet and let it heat over low for a few minutes, or just until the cheese is melted and creamy.

Finished pasta topped with sliced green onions.

Top the finished pasta with the sliced green onions and serve hot!

Close up overhead view of Cheesy Sausage Pasta in the skillet.

Soooo cheeessyyyy. 🤤

Try These Other One Pot Pasta Recipes:

Creamy Spinach and Sausage Pasta is an easy one pot meal for quick weeknight dinners. BudgetBytes.com

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Chicken Pot Pie

Chicken pot pie is a cozy and classic comfort food made with a flakey crust and a rich sauce full of tender chicken and vegetables.

The post Chicken Pot Pie appeared first on Budget Bytes.

I could eat this chicken pot pie every day for the rest of my life. Okay, maybe I’m being a little hyperbolic, but it’s definitely one of those recipes that I can eat for days in a row and I’ll still be sad once the leftovers are gone. Because when a food makes you feel this cozy and good, how can you not want it in your life every day? Either way, I guarantee this scrumptious homemade chicken pot pie is going to be made on REPEAT in my house all through the fall and winter.

Chicken Pot Pie with a slice removed.

What’s in a Chicken Pot Pie?

Chicken pot pie starts with a deliciously flakey pie crust and is filled with a rich and saucy chicken gravy, chunks of tender chicken, and a medley of colorful vegetables. It’s everything you want in a meal on one plate!

This recipe is pretty flexible, allowing you to take some shortcuts if you need to make the prep easier, or you can do everything from scratch to make this pie an ✨EVENT✨!

Pie Crust Options

It’s no secret that the crust is one of the best parts of a chicken pot pie, so we chose not to skimp on the crust. We used our simple 3-ingredient pie crust recipe, which is super buttery and deliciously flakey. If you want to use a store-bought crust, just make sure to buy a double crust (top and bottom crusts) and follow the baking instructions on the box.

You could also bake this “pie” in skillet without a bottom crust and then top it with your favorite biscuits. The filling is fully cooked before it goes into the pie, so simply top with biscuits and then bake until the biscuits are browned and cooked through.

Can I Use Pre-Cooked Chicken for Chicken Pot Pie?

Yes! Chicken pot pie is a great way to use up leftover rotisserie chicken, or even leftover turkey from Thanksgiving! Just skip the first step in the recipe below (cooking the raw chicken) and add your pre-cooked chicken to the filling when the cooked chicken is added back to the gravy with the herbs and spices.

Use Fresh or Frozen Vegetables

To make this chicken pot pie super simple, we used a frozen vegetable medley. Using a frozen veggie mix means less chopping and you won’t have any leftover vegetables to try to use up later. If you do want to slice and chop your own vegetables, use 1-2 carrots, about ½ cup corn kernels, ½ cup chopped green beans, and ½ cup peas. You could also other vegetables, like mushrooms or celery.

Do I Need to Blind Bake the Crust?

When using our 3-ingredient pie crust recipe and a glass pie plate, our chicken pot pie baked to perfection with a golden brown flakey bottom crust without having to pre-bake the bottom crust. That being said, using different crust recipes or store-bought crusts with different types of pie plates may yield different results.

A slice of chicken pot pie being lifted out of the pie pan from the side.
A slice of chicken pot pie taken out of the pie dish.

Chicken Pot Pie

Chicken pot pie is a cozy classic comfort food made with a flakey crust and a rich sauce full of tender chicken and vegetables.
Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine American
Total Cost $8.44 recipe / $1.06 serving
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 361kcal
Author Beth – Budget Bytes

Ingredients

  • 1 boneless, skinless chicken breast (about ⅔ lb.) $3.33
  • 1 Tbsp cooking oil $0.04
  • 1 yellow onion $0.38
  • 4 Tbsp butter $0.50
  • 4 Tbsp flour $0.04
  • 1 cup chicken broth $0.13
  • 1/2 cup whole milk $0.10
  • 1/4 tsp dried thyme $0.03
  • 1/4 tsp rubbed sage $0.03
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper $0.02
  • 3/4 tsp salt $0.05
  • 12 oz. frozen mixed vegetables $1.25
  • 1 double pie crust $2.34
  • l egg (optional) $0.20

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Cut the chicken breast into ½-inch pieces.
  • Heat a deep skillet or Dutch oven over medium heat. Once hot, add the cooking oil and diced chicken. Cook just until the chicken is cooked through. Remove the chicken from the skillet.
  • While the chicken is cooking, dice the onion. After removing the chicken from the skillet, add the diced onion and butter. Sauté the onions in the butter until softened.
  • Sprinkle the flour over the onions in the skillet and continue to cook and stir for two minutes more. It's okay if the flour begins to coat the surface of the skillet, but don't let it burn.
  • Add the chicken broth and milk to the skillet. Whisk to combine and dissolve any flour off the bottom of the skillet. Let the liquid come up to a simmer, at which point it will thicken into a gravy.
  • Add the cooked chicken back to the skillet along with the thyme, sage, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine.
  • Finally, add the frozen mixed vegetables and allow them to heat through in the gravy, stirring occasionally, just until the gravy begins to simmer again. Remove the skillet from the heat.
  • Place your bottom crust in a 9-inch pie plate. Prick the bottom several times with a fork. Transfer the chicken, vegetable, and gravy mixture into the pie crust.
  • Add the top crust and crimp the edges closed. Brush a light layer of whisked egg over the surface of the pie crust (optional). Use a knife to cut large vents in the top of the crust.
  • Bake the chicken pot pie for 45-50 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown and flakey. The baking time may vary depending on the type of crust and pie plate used.

Nutrition

Serving: 1slice | Calories: 361kcal | Carbohydrates: 31g | Protein: 13g | Fat: 20g | Sodium: 616mg | Fiber: 3g
Close up overhead view of a chicken pot pie with a slice cut into it.

How to Make Chicken Pot Pie – Step by Step Photos

Cooked diced chicken in a skillet.

Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Dice one boneless skinless chicken breast into ½-inch pieces and season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Heat a deep skillet or Dutch oven over medium. Once hot, add 1 Tbsp cooking oil and the diced chicken breast. Cook the chicken pieces just until cooked through (do not over cook).

Diced onion and butter in a deep skillet.

While the chicken is cooking, dice one yellow onion. Remove the cooked chicken from the skillet and add the diced onion and 4 Tbsp butter. Sauté the onions in the butter over medium heat until softened.

Flour being added to the skillet.

Once the onions are soft, sprinkle in 4 Tbsp of all-purpose flour. Continue to cook and stir for about two minutes more. It’s okay for the flour to begin to coat the bottom of the skillet, just make sure it doesn’t begin to burn.

Milk and broth being added to the skillet.

Add one cup of chicken broth and one cup of whole milk to the skillet. Whisk to combine and dissolve any flour off the bottom of the skillet.

Thickened gravy being whisked.

Allow the liquid to come up to a simmer, at which point it will thicken into a nice gravy.

Chicken and seasoning added back to the gravy.

Add the cooked chicken back to the skillet along with ¼ tsp dried thyme, ¼ tsp rubbed sage, ¼ tsp black pepper, and ¾ tsp salt. Stir to combine.

frozen vegetables stirred into the gravy.

Stir in one 12oz. bag of frozen mixed vegetables. Allow the gravy mixture to heat through and come back up to a simmer, stirring occasionally. Once fully heated through and simmering, remove it from the heat.

Pie filling being added to a pie crust.

Place the bottom crust into a pie plate and prick it several times over the bottom with a fork. Fill the pie crust with the chicken pot pie filling.

Vents being cut into the top pie crust.

Add the top crust and crimp the edges closed. Brush the top of the pie with a thin layer of whisked egg. Use a knife to cut large vents into the top of the pie crust.

Baked Chicken Pot Pie.

Bake the chicken pot pie for 45-50 minutes, or until the pie crust is golden brown and flakey and the filling is bubbling up slightly through the vents. Total cooking time may vary depending on the type of crust and pie dish used. The filling is fully cooked before going into the pie, so adjust the baking time based on the crust.

Chicken pot pie on a blue background with plates and parsley on the sides.

Let the pie cool for about 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

A slice of chicken pot pie taken out of the pie dish.

Try these other savory pie recipes:

The post Chicken Pot Pie appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Banana Pudding

This mouth-watering, easy-to-make banana pudding has it all: honey-like fruit, velvety vanilla pudding, and the satisfying crunch of buttery wafers! And at under five dollars for four delicious servings, this is one dessert recipe you’ll reach for over and over again.

The post Banana Pudding appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Have you ever had your mouth water just looking at a dessert? Cause that’s what’s going to happen when you make this crazy-easy banana pudding. It has it all the things you could possibly want at the end of a meal: honey-like fruit, velvety vanilla pudding, and the satisfying crunch of buttery wafers. It’s a classic for a reason!

Side shot of banana pudding in a glass with a second glass in the background.

What is banana pudding?

Banana pudding is a Southern American dessert with layers of creamy vanilla pudding, fresh banana slices, and crunchy cookies. Sometimes it’s finished with a little whipped cream on top. It originated in the late 1800s when bananas went from exotic to everyday (like the internet did in the 90s. Do you remember dial-up? Kids these days don’t know the struggle. 😂)

How do you layer banana pudding?

There is a method to the madness when you’re layering banana pudding. Whether making a large bowl or individual servings, the foundation should always be cookies. That first layer of vanilla wafers will soak up that creamy vanilla pudding and transform into a cake-like consistency. Your second layer should be thin slices of ripe banana, so when you spoon the vanilla pudding over everything, it sinks into all the nooks and crannies. Then repeat. Holy cow. Don’t you want some RIGHT NOW?!?!

Can I make it in advance?

You can make the banana pudding a day ahead, but you should do what you can to prevent your bananas from browning cause ain’t nobody got time for that. It’s as simple as making an acid water bath for your banana slices. You can use one cup of water and then add a tablespoon of any acidic juice. Lemon, orange, lime, and pineapple work just fine. In a pinch, you can even use vinegar. Dip your slices for about 10 seconds in the bath, dry them on a paper towel, and then layer away!

Overhead shot of banana pudding in three glasses with wafers scattered on the counter.

How long does banana pudding last?

Banana pudding doesn’t have a long shelf life. Not that it needs it, as it quickly disappears whenever you make it. TRUST. If you treat the bananas to a citrusy bath, your pudding should keep for two to three days before the bananas start to brown and the cookies start to get mushy.


What if there aren’t ripe bananas at the store?

You can ripen green bananas by wrapping the bunch in aluminum foil. Then place them in a paper bag with other ripe fruit, like apples or avocadoes. Put the bag in a warm, sunny spot for about 12 to 24 hours. When the skin has yellowed, remove the foil and separate the bananas. Next, place them on a baking sheet in a 300ºF oven for about ten minutes. Their skin will start to brown, but any remaining starches will transform into sugar.

Side shot of three glasses of banana pudding.
Side shot of three glasses of banana pudding.

Banana Pudding

This easy-to-make banana pudding has all the things you want in a dessert: honey-like fruit, velvety vanilla pudding, and the crunch of buttery wafers.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Total Cost $4.91 recipe/ $1.23 serving
Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Servings 4 1 1/2 cups each
Calories 761kcal
Author Monti – Budget Bytes

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Slice bananas in about 1/3 inch thick rounds. Place four glasses that hold about 2 cups each on your work surface.
  • Add about four vanilla wafers to each glass. If necessary, snap them in half to create an even layer. Top with 4 or 5 slices of banana.
  • Spoon about 1/4 cup of pudding over the bananas. Repeat the layering process a second and a third time. Serve!

Notes

*6 ounces of vanilla wafers is about half of an 11 ounce box.
*You can use homemade or store-bought instant pudding.

Nutrition

Serving: 1.5cups | Calories: 761kcal | Carbohydrates: 113g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 31g | Sodium: 434mg | Fiber: 3g
Overhead shot of three glasses of banana pudding with wafers on the counter and in a bowl.

How to Make Banana Pudding – Step by Step Photos

Side view of wafers and bananas in a glass.

Place four glasses that hold about 2 cups each on your work surface. Add four vanilla wafers to each glass. If necessary, snap them in half to create an even layer. Top with a 4 or 5 slices of banana.

Side view of banana pudding layered in a glass.

Spoon about 1/4 cup of pudding over the bananas. Repeat the layering process a second and a third time. Serve your banans pudding as is, or top with homemade whipped cream.

Overhead shot of three glasses filled with banana pudding with vanilla wafers next tot hem.

More Budget-Friendly Easy-To-Make Desserts

The post Banana Pudding appeared first on Budget Bytes.

One Pot Lemon Pepper Chicken with Orzo

Lemon Pepper Chicken with Orzo is a zesty one-pot meal featuring juicy chicken thighs, orzo, feta, and lemon pepper for tons of flavor!

The post One Pot Lemon Pepper Chicken with Orzo appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Welcome to another episode of “How can so few ingredients make such a delicious meal?!” One-pot meals are a miracle, my friends, and this Lemon Pepper Chicken with Orzo is the perfect example. This dish is packed with flavor thanks to a hefty dose of lemon pepper, chicken broth, juicy chicken thighs, and a pop of feta at the end. Plus, it’s fast, easy, and barely anything to clean up afterward. :)

Originally posted 8/5/2015, updated 8/15/2022.

Overhead view of lemon pepper chicken and orzo in the skillet with a napkin and parsley on the sides.

What’s in Lemon Pepper Chicken with Orzo

For this skillet meal, I liberally seasoned some bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs with lemon pepper, then combined it with some orzo, chicken broth, and parsley. Everything gets cooked together in one pot so that orzo soaks up all the flavor from both the chicken thighs and the broth, and not a drop of flavor is lost. It’s so simple, yet so good. Add a quick little side salad with fresh greens and you’ve got a five-star dinner (and very few dishes to clean). Victory!

Can I Use Boneless Chicken?

I used bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs for this recipe, but you can use boneless thighs or breasts if you prefer. The chicken will cook a little faster if you use boneless and you might miss out on a little bit of the flavor that comes with bone-in chicken. Also, be aware that chicken breasts do tend to dry out faster than chicken thighs, so the end product won’t be quite as juicy.

Tips for Cooking One Pot Pasta

Getting one pot pasta meals to cook just right can take a little practice, but here are a few tips to make sure your pasta cooks evenly and all the way through without leaving too much liquid behind:

  • Use a heavy or thick-bottomed piece of cookware. Thin cookware doesn’t cook evenly and can leave some pasta undercooked and some pasta overcooked. A deep skillet or Dutch Oven will work well for this recipe.
  • Use a burner that is close in size to the bottom of your pot or pan. If the burner is a lot smaller than the width of the pan, you may have trouble getting the outside edges to cook evenly.
  • Make sure the broth is simmering the whole time. Heat settings on ranges can vary, so you may need to adjust the heat up or down slightly to maintain a simmer in the broth.

Lemon pepper chicken and orzo in a shallow bowl with a fork.

Overhead view of a pot full of lemon pepper chicken and orzo.

One Pot Lemon Pepper Chicken with Orzo

Lemon Pepper Chicken with Orzo is a zesty one-pot meal featuring juicy chicken thighs, orzo, feta, and lemon pepper for tons of flavor!
Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine American
Total Cost $7.54 recipe / $1.89 serving
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 612kcal
Author Beth - Budget Bytes

Ingredients

  • 4 chicken thighs* $3.74
  • 2 Tbsp lemon pepper seasoning $0.60
  • 1 Tbsp cooking oil $0.04
  • 2 cloves garlic $0.16
  • 2 cups chicken broth $0.26
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley $0.20
  • 1.5 cups orzo $1.29
  • 2 oz. feta, crumbled $1.25

Instructions

  • Blot the chicken thighs dry with a paper towel, then season both sides liberally with lemon pepper seasoning (about 2 Tbsp lemon pepper total).
  • Heat a large deep skillet over medium. Once hot, add the cooking oil. Add the seasoned chicken thighs, skin side down, and let them cook undisturbed until browned (about 6-8 minutes for bone-in skin-on thighs). Flip the chicken thighs and cook until browned on the second side. The chicken will be cooked most of the way through at this point but will finish cooking when simmered with the orzo. Remove the chicken to a clean plate.
  • While the chicken is browning, roughly chop about 1/4 bunch of parsley and mince two cloves of garlic. After removing the chicken from the skillet, turn the heat down to low, add the minced garlic, and sauté the garlic in the residual fat for about a minute.
  • Add 2 cups of chicken broth to the skillet and stir to dissolve the crispy browned bits from the bottom of the pan. 
  • Add the orzo and half of the chopped parsley. Stir to combine. Finally, return the chicken to the skillet, skin side up.
  • Place a lid on the skillet, turn the heat up to high, and let the broth come to a full boil. Once it reaches a boil, turn the heat down to low. Let the skillet simmer on low for about 15 minutes, or until most of the broth has been absorbed. Make sure it’s simmering the whole time. If it stops simmering, increase the heat slightly until it just starts to simmer again.
  • After about 15 minutes the orzo should be tender and most of the broth absorbed but there will still be a little sauce in the skillet.
  • Fluff the orzo around the chicken a bit with a fork, then top with the remaining parsley and the crumbled feta. Serve and enjoy!

Notes

*I used bone-in chicken thighs with skin, but you could use boneless and skinless, if preferred.

Nutrition

Serving: 1Serving | Calories: 612kcal | Carbohydrates: 46g | Protein: 34g | Fat: 32g | Sodium: 715mg | Fiber: 3g

Close up side view of lemon pepper chicken and orzo in the pan.

How to Make One Pot Chicken and Orzo – Step by Step Photos

Bone-in chicken thighs seasoned with lemon pepper on a cutting board.

Start by blotting four chicken thighs dry with a paper towel. Drying them helps the seasoning stick and helps them brown better in the skillet. I used bone-in thighs with skin, but you could use boneless, skinless if desired. Just keep in mind that boneless and skinless thighs are usually a bit more expensive and will cook faster. Season both sides of each thigh liberally with lemon pepper seasoning (about 2 Tbsp total). 

Browned chicken thighs in the skillet.

Heat a large deep skillet over medium. Once hot, add 1 Tbsp cooking oil. Add the seasoned chicken thighs, skin side down, and let them cook undisturbed until browned (about 6-8 minutes for bone-in skin-on thighs). Flip the chicken thighs and cook until browned on the second side. The chicken will be cooked most of the way through at this point but will finish cooking when simmered with the orzo. Remove the chicken to a clean plate.

Garlic added to the skillet.

While the chicken is browning, roughly chop about 1/4 bunch of parsley and mince two cloves of garlic. Turn the heat down to low, add the minced garlic, and sauté the garlic in the residual fat for about a minute.

Broth being poured into the skillet.

Add 2 cups of chicken broth to the skillet and stir to dissolve the crispy browned bits from the bottom of the pan. 

Broth being whisked in the skillet to dissolve chicken drippings.

The broth will turn a deep brown color as the drippings are dissolved into the mixture.

Parsley and orzo added to the skillet.

Add about half of the chopped parsley and 1.5 cups of orzo. Stir to combine.

Chicken thighs added back to the pot.

Finally, return the chicken to the skillet, skin side up. Place a lid on the skillet, turn the heat up to high, and let the broth come to a full boil. Once it reaches a boil, turn the heat down to low. Let the skillet simmer on low for about 15 minutes, or until most of the broth has been absorbed. Make sure it’s simmering the whole time. If it stops simmering, increase the heat slightly until it just starts to simmer again.

Cooked orzo and chicken in the pot.

After about 15 minutes the orzo should be tender and most of the broth absorbed but there will still be a little sauce in the skillet.

Finished lemon pepper chicken and orzo in the pan.

Fluff the orzo around the chicken a bit with a fork, then top with the remaining parsley and the crumbled feta. And that’s all it takes to make this simple Lemon Pepper Chicken with Orzo. I could seriously eat this orzo all day long. ALL. DAY. LONG.

Overhead view of lemon pepper chicken and orzo in a bowl.

Try These Other One Pot Chicken Recipes:

The post One Pot Lemon Pepper Chicken with Orzo 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.

Menemen (Turkish Scrambled Eggs with Tomatoes)

Menemen, or Turkish scrambled eggs, is an easy, healthy, and customizable dish that can be ready in less than 30 minutes! BudgetBytes.com

The post Menemen (Turkish Scrambled Eggs with Tomatoes) appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Ready to up your breakfast game? Try this traditional Turkish scrambled eggs recipe, also known as Menemen. This one-pan vegetarian egg dish is healthy, filling, easily customizable, and ready in less than 30 minutes from start to finish.

Overhead view of a skillet full of menemen with a wooden spoon.

What Is Menemen?

Menemen is a traditional Turkish breakfast recipe made by cooking eggs with onions, peppers, and tomatoes with a subtle hint of spice. It gets its name from a Turkish town called Menemen, located in Izmir. 

What to Serve with Menemen?

Menemen is traditionally served in the skillet that it is cooked in while it is still hot and bubbly. It is usually served with crusty bread on the side, which is then dipped into the soft scrambled eggs and vegetables for a satisfying bite.

With that being said, if you want to serve it as Turks do then I would recommend a few must-haves on the side:

  • Cheese & olives: You can’t talk about Turkish breakfast and not include cheese and olives. In terms of cheese, you can use feta cheese, fresh mozzarella cheese, or even cheddar cheese. And for olives, serve it with Kalamata olives, green olives, or a mixture of the two with a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of dried oregano.
  • Simit: A breakfast staple in Turkey, simit is a sesame-crusted circular bread similar to an American bagel but crustier on the outside and softer on the inside. It pairs wonderfully with menemen and can also be enjoyed with cheese and olives. 
  • Turkish Borek: Borek is made by layering phyllo dough with a filling usually made with cheese and sauteed vegetables. One of the most popular fillings is spinach and feta, which would pair perfectly with this hearty scrambled egg dish.

Ingredient Variations & Substitutions:

The best part of this Turkish soft scramble recipe is that you can easily change it up with whatever you have on hand. Here are a few ideas:

  • Make it without onions: There is an ongoing debate amongst the diehard menemen fans about making it with or without onions. The good news is that it can be made with or without it. Simply omit using onions and sautee peppers and spices by themselves instead. 
  • Peppers: The traditional menemen recipe uses fresh green Turkish peppers, aka sivribiber, which could be hard to find. In my version here I used bell peppers, but feel free to use whatever pepper you have on hand. Seeded and chopped jalapeno, Anaheim peppers, and even Hungarian wax peppers would all work.
  • Tomatoes: I used a canned tomato to make it easy and convenient. However, during the summer months, when they are in season, I prefer using two or three medium-size fresh tomatoes instead.
  • Cheese: Crumbled feta cheese is a very popular topping but you can also add shredded mozzarella cheese on top at the last minute and let it melt on top before serving.

What else can I add?

You can follow the recipe as written or take it up a notch with a few additions to it.

  • Lamb or Italian Sausage: If you are a meat-eater, you can sautee ½ lbs of sausage at the same time as you sautee onions and peppers.
  • Spices: Sprinkle it with Aleppo pepper, Urfa chili pepper, or red pepper flakes if you don’t mind a little bit of heat.
A hand dipping bread into a pan of menemen.
A skillet full of menemen with dishes and bread on the side.

Menemen

Menemen, or Turkish scrambled eggs, is an easy, healthy, and customizable dish that can be ready in less than 30 minutes!
Course Breakfast, Brunch
Cuisine Turkish
Total Cost $5.36 recipe / $1.34 serving
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 255kcal
Author Aysegul Sanford

Ingredients

  • 2 Tbsp olive oil $0.25
  • 1 yellow onion $0.37
  • 1 bell pepper (any color) $0.98
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano $0.05
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper (or Aleppo pepper) $0.03
  • 1 15oz. can diced tomatoes $0.79
  • 1 tsp salt $0.05
  • 1/4 tsp freshly cracked black pepper $0.02
  • 4 large eggs, lightly beaten $0.78
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley $0.40
  • 1 cup crumbled feta (optional) $1.64

Instructions

  • Heat olive oil in a 10-inch skillet over medium heat. Add in onion, pepper, dried oregano, and red pepper flakes. Cook, stirring frequently until vegetables are softened for about 7-8 minutes.
  • Stir in the tomatoes, salt, and pepper. Sautee for 2-3 minutes or until tomatoes are heated through.
  • Gently pour the lightly beaten eggs into the skillet and cook, stirring frequently, until eggs are just barely set yet still soft, about 2-3 minutes.
  • Immediately sprinkle it with chopped parsley and crumbled feta cheese, if using. Serve with crusty bread on the side.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 255kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 20g | Sodium: 1086mg | Fiber: 1g
A skillet full of menemen with dishes and bread on the side.

How to Make Menemen – Step by Step Photos

Diced onion and bell pepper on a cutting board.

Begin by dicing one bell pepper (any color) and one small onion.

Onion, bell pepper, and spices in a skillet.

Heat 2 Tbsp of olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add the diced onion and bell pepper, along with ½ tsp dried oregano and ¼ tsp red pepper flakes or Aleppo pepper. Sauté until the vegetables have softened.

Diced tomatoes being added to the skillet from a bowl.

Add one 15oz. can of diced tomatoes (with the juices), 1 tsp salt, and ¼ tsp black pepper. Stir to combine.

Sautéed vegetables in the skillet.

Continue to sauté for about 2-3 minutes more, or until everything is heated through well.

Beated eggs being poured into the skillet.

Lightly beat four large eggs, then pour them into the skillet.

Eggs and vegetables being scrambled in the skillet.

Cook the eggs, stirring frequently, until they are just barely set yet still soft (about 2-3 minutes).

Parsley being sprinkled onto scrambled eggs.

Sprinkle chopped fresh parsley over the eggs.

Feta being sprinkled over the eggs.

Top with crumbled feta and more black pepper, if desired.

bread being dipped into a pan of menemen.

Serve with crusty bread for dipping!

The post Menemen (Turkish Scrambled Eggs with Tomatoes) appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Summer Vegetables in Red Sauce

Colorful summer vegetables simmered in a red sauce and spooned over warm polenta make a hearty and inexpensive summer meal.

The post Summer Vegetables in Red Sauce appeared first on Budget Bytes.

One of my favorite things about summer is all of the colorful vegetables. I pack my plate with as many vegetables as I can this time of year because I know that six months from now they won’t be nearly as delicious or inexpensive. Simmering a medley of vegetables in a simple jar of pasta sauce makes a really quick, filling, and inexpensive meal that you can spoon over a bowl of polenta, a plate of pasta, or even a hearty piece of toast. Simple and delicious!

Close up overhead view of vegetables in red sauce over polenta with a fork.

What Vegetables to Use

Whenever I make a recipe with multiple vegetables, I always try to make sure to get a variety of colors. So today I used eggplant (dark/purple), zucchini (green), red bell pepper (red), and yellow onion (white). But here are some other vegetables that would also work well in this recipe:

  • Carrots
  • Yellow squash
  • Green bell pepper
  • Spinach or kale
  • Mushrooms
  • Asparagus

Red Sauce Options

To keep this recipe extra simple, I just used a jar of store-bought pasta sauce, but just about any red pasta sauce will work here. If you prefer to make your own instead of buying pre-made sauce, you can try my quick weeknight pasta sauce, or a deeper slow cooker pasta sauce.

What to Serve with Vegetables in Red Sauce

I whipped up a quick Parmesan polenta to serve as the base for these vegetables and sauce, but they would be equally good over pasta, mashed potatoes, or even a sturdy piece of toast.

Overhead view of vegetables in red sauce in the pot.
Close up overhead view of cornmeal and vegetables in red sauce in a bowl with a fork on the side.

Summer Vegetables in Red Sauce

Colorful summer vegetables simmered in a red sauce and spooned over warm polenta make a hearty and inexpensive summer meal.
Course Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine American
Total Cost $8.15 recipe / $1.36 serving
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 6 1 cup vegetables each
Calories 263kcal
Author Beth – Budget Bytes

Equipment

Ingredients

Vegetables in Red Sauce

  • 1 yellow onion $0.32
  • 4 cloves garlic $0.32
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil $0.32
  • 1 eggplant $1.49
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning $0.10
  • 1/4 tsp salt $0.02
  • 1/4 tsp pepper $0.03
  • 1 red bell pepper $1.50
  • 1 zucchini $1.47
  • 1 24oz. jar pasta sauce $1.50
  • 2 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley (optional garnish) $0.10

Parmesan Cornmeal (optional)

  • 5 cups water $0.00
  • 1 tsp salt $0.05
  • 1 cup yellow cornmeal $0.40
  • 2 Tbsp butter $0.22
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan $0.36

Instructions

  • Dice the onion and mince the garlic. Add the onion, garlic, and olive oil to a large pot. Sauté over medium heat until the onions have softened.
  • While the onion and garlic are cooking, dice the eggplant into ½-inch pieces. Add the eggplant to the pot with the Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper, and continue to sauté over medium heat.
  • Dice the red bell pepper. Once the eggplant has softened, add the diced bell pepper to the pot and continue to sauté.
  • Slice the zucchini into ¼-inch thick quarter-rounds, then add them to the pot. Continue to sauté just a couple minutes more, or until the zucchini just begin to soften.
  • Add the red sauce and 1/4 cup water to the pot and stir to combine. Let the vegetables simmer in the sauce for 5-10 minutes, or until they reach your desired level of tenderness.
  • While the vegetables are simmering, bring a separate pot of water to a boil.
  • Once boiling, stir in the salt, then pour in the cornmeal while whisking. Continue to cook and whisk until the cornmeal thickens (this should happen quickly).
  • Once the cornmeal has thickened, stir in the butter until melted, then add the grated Parmesan. Stir to combine, then taste and adjust the seasoning to your liking.
  • To serve, spoon ⅔ cup cornmeal into a bowl then top with one cup of the vegetables and red sauce. Garnish with chopped parsley if desired.

Notes

Other serving options include serving the vegetables and sauce over pasta, a hearty piece of toast, or even a baked potato!

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 263kcal | Carbohydrates: 35g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 12g | Sodium: 1143mg | Fiber: 8g
A bowl of summer vegetables in red sauce over polenta with a fork in the center.

How to Make Summer Vegetables in Red Sauce – Step by Step Photos

Garlic Onion and Oil in the pot.

Dice one yellow onion and mince four cloves of garlic. Add the onion and garlic to a large pot along with 2 Tbsp olive oil. Sauté over medium heat until the onions have softened.

Diced eggplant added to the pot.

While the onion and garlic are cooking, dice an eggplant into ½-inch pieces. Add them to the pot with 1/4 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp pepper, and 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning, and continue to sauté until the eggplant have softened.

Diced bell pepper added to the pot.

Dice one red bell pepper, add it to the pot, and continue to sauté.

Chopped zucchini added to the pot.

Slice one zucchini into 1/4-inch thick quarter-rounds. Add the zucchini to the pot and sauté just until the zucchini begins to soften.

pasta sauce being poured into the pot.

Add one 24oz. jar (3 cups) red sauce and 1/4 cup water to the pot and stir to combine.

Simmered vegetables in red sauce in the pot.

Let the vegetables simmer in the red sauce for about 10 more minutes. Taste and season with salt to taste.

Cornmeal being poured into a pot of boiling water with a whisk.

If you’d like to serve the vegetables over polenta, bring 5 cups of water up to a boil. Once boiling, stir in one teaspoon salt, then add one cup of cornmeal while whisking. Continue to cook and whisk until it thickens (this only takes a minute or two).

Butter added to cooked cornmeal.

Stir two tablespoons of butter into the thickened cornmeal.

Grated Parmesan being sprinkled over the cornmeal.

Finally, Stir in ¼ cup grated Parmesan. Taste the cornmeal and adjust the seasonings to your liking.

Close up overhead view of cornmeal and vegetables in red sauce in a bowl with a fork on the side.

Add about ⅔ cup of the cornmeal to a bowl and top with 1 cup of the vegetables in red sauce. Top with a little more Parmesan and some chopped fresh parsley. Enjoy!

The post Summer Vegetables in Red Sauce appeared first on Budget Bytes.