Cooking takes time and money, the holidays are an especially busy time with cooking and entertaining. The last thing you want to be doing is taking away valuable time from your family at the holidays and spending your hard earned money on recipes and food that could have cost you less money and time.
There are easy recipes and recipe shortcuts that you can do to save you time and money, plus you can create wonderful meals throughout the year and especially important at the holidays.
Here you will find quick recipes and recipe shortcuts that are from my personal cooking experiences and mostly from the cooking experiences of family and friends. The easy recipes and recipe shortcuts are ranked in no particular order, each idea will save you time and money in the kitchen.
Recipe Shortcut: Cut Time Off of Chopping Vegetables
Instead of buying onions and peppers from the produce department and spending the time to chop them up, save lots of time and buy a bag of frozen fajita vegetables.
Recipe Shortcut: Quick Chicken Soup
If you do not have the time to make a homemade chicken soup, purchase the rotisserie chicken that is already cooked at your local grocery store and add it to canned chicken broth/stock. If you also want to add frozen carrots to the soup, it makes for a quick and delicious soup recipe.
Recipe Shortcut: Quick Wash Salad
If you choose to wash the pre-cut prepared salad in a bag, there is a quick way to rinse it. Open the top of the salad bag, fill it with water until it comes a little above the salad mixture, reseal the top and swish around a bit. Poke holes in the bottom of the bag with a knife to allow the water to escape, gently squeeze the bag until all the water is removed and dump the salad in a bowl. Forget about dealing with a strainer, this is a much quicker method.
Recipe Shortcut: Use Canned Sweet Potatoes
When making sweet potato casserole, instead of cooking sweet potatoes use canned potatoes instead. The canned sweet potatoes are delicious and this recipe shortcut will save tons of time.
Recipe Shortcut: Quick Frosting
If you need frosting quick and do not like how thick canned frosting is, add milk to the canned frosting until it is thinned out to the consistency of homemade frosting.
Recipe Shortcut: Fast Sauce
If you are making lasagna and do not have time to make homemade sauce, throw in sauce from a jar. Many sauces from jars taste delicious and work out well when in a time pinch.
Quick Dinner Recipe: Chicken Caesar Wraps
Pound/flatten two chicken breasts and sauté in olive oil approximately 6-8 minutes on each side. Cut into strips. Fill veggie wrap with chicken strips, shredded lettuce and Caesar dressing.
Easy Recipe: Quick Chili Cheese Dip
Using a microwavable safe dish, layer cream cheese first, then layer Hormel Chili with no beans and final layer is shredded cheese. Microwave for approximately 4 minutes until cheese is bubbling. Serve with chips.
Quick Dinner Recipe: Veggie Pizza
Roll out crescent roll dough on a cookie sheet, pinch the seams together, bake following the directions on the can. Mix together cream cheese and dry ranch dressing powder and spread on baked crescent roll dough. Add chopped vegetables including: broccoli, cauliflower, tomatoes, peppers, green onion and shredded cheese.
Easy Dessert Recipe: Crescent Roll Dream Bars
Roll out a can of crescent rolls, pinch seams together on a 9x 13 pan. Mix together 2 bars of softened cream cheese, 1 egg and 1 cup sugar in a separate bowl. Spread cream cheese mixture on to the crescent rolls and cover the cream cheese mixture with another can of crescent rolls, making sure to gently pinch the seams together. Mix an egg white and brush on top of the crescent rolls, sprinkle with ½ cup chopped nuts, ½ cup sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon. Bake at 350 for 10-30 minutes until golden brown.
Renee Anderson-Algonquin, IL
Janis Rosenthal-Sleepy Hollow, IL
Donna Madaffari-Wheaton, IL
Breanne Skawski-Elgin , IL
Denise Considine-Hanover Park , IL