Sausage & Apple One-Pan Meal #2

At this point, I have a good little stash of squash going. A couple straight from my parents garden. I’m hoping to acquire enough for use this fall and through the new year. One thing I love is stuffed squash, and I’m planning one for tomorrow.

I also have a steady stream of potatoes and apples coming in. It’s great. I’ve made apple and apple-pear sauces for my work meals recently. And now I am ready to utilize more of the potatoes and squash.

The upcoming change of season is the reason. Right about this time every year I start making more and more heartier meals. As I sit here writing, I’m full from one such meal. This is that recipe.

By the way, when I say large potato I mean a huge one. Not sure how much it weighed, but it was a hefty one. Also, I left the peel on the potato, cutting out a couple of small bad parts. And I left the apple peeled, but cored it. Peels have important nutrients too!


oil, ghee, or butter

3 cloves garlic, crushed

1 large potato, chopped

1 large apple, diced

1/2 lb turkey sausage, chopped

sea salt


  1. Allow oil, ghee, or butter to heat in a skillet, then add crushed garlic and stir. Allow to cook for a minute.
  2. Add the potatoes and allow to cook down about half-way.
  3. Sprinkle the apples over the potatoes and stir.
  4. Add the sausage, salt, and pepper, and stir again.
  5. Stir occasionally while it all continues to cook, until the potatoes are done to your likeness.


  • Use whatever potatoes and apples you like.
  • Try using other seasonings, such as parsley, rosemary, or oregano.
  • Buy fresh from a farm stand if there is one nearby, or a farmer’s market. Or, try a Misfits Market box. (This is an affiliate link. You get a discount on your first order, and I get one on a future one. A win-win! Use this referral code so we can both get a discount: COOKWME-PI4FFE ) This is where I get most of my produce.
  • Plant a garden. This would be the ultimate in savings, and exactly what I would do if I wasn’t renting.

Serving Suggestions

Enjoy the recipe!

~ Shannon


Autumn Turkey Soup

This is an easy recipe that can be served on a cold, autumn evening. Served in a pumpkin bowl, this recipe will add a decorative touch to the dinner table.


water and/or vegetable stock or broth

bite size cubes of pumpkin

bite size cubes of two different kinds of squash

bite size cubes of potato

bite size cubes of sweet potato

chunks of leftover turkey

1 or 2 cloves of fresh garlic

fresh or dried parsley

fresh or dried rosemary

  1. Pour the liquid into a pot, and add the pumpkin, squash, and potatoes, as well as the diced garlic.
  2. Allow to cook most of the way, then add the turkey.
  3. Add the parsley and some rosemary to taste.
  4. Pour into pumpkin bowls and serve.


  • Purchase stock or broth on sale, as store brands.
  • Better yet, make your own.  This will save even more money.
  • Use leftover turkey from Thanksgiving to save more money.
  • Use organic herbs and produce from your garden for the ultimate savings.
  • Roast the pumpkin seeds and sprinkle them over the stew once it is poured into the bowls.

Serving Suggestions:

  • Serve with a fruit salad.

What autumn stews are favorites of your family?


Homemade Chicken Soup

When my siblings, cousins, and I were young, our Nan had a standard chicken soup she would sometimes make. If one of us was sick and wanted her to make a soup, she would cater it to our particular likes. Did you have someone who would do the same for you?

While chicken soup is good on a cold winter day, it is also satisfying any time you’re not feeling well or when you need comfort food. Homemade is best, especially when made with homemade chicken stock. I do not have measurements for this particular recipe.


Chicken or vegetable stock

Chicken, cooked and cut into bite size pieces

Diced potatoes

Diced carrot

Parsley, chopped fresh

Garlic, chopped fine

  1. Pour the stock into a pot and add the chicken and vegetables.
  2. Add the garlic.
  3. Cook on high until boiling, then lower to medium heat and continue cooking until carrots and potatoes are tender.
  4. Add the parsley five minutes before done.
  5. Remove from heat.


  • Add chopped celery and onion during step one.
  • Add pasta in time for it to cook thoroughly.

Serving Suggestions



Corned Beef and Potatoes One-Pan Meal

Earlier, I posted the Chicken and Potato One-Pan Meal. This meal is only slightly different, and maybe even more tasty.


1 – 2 tablespoons coconut oil

1 small carrot

1 medium white potato

1 small sweet potato

1/2 to 3/4 cup pre-cooked corned beef

Seasonings to taste: sea salt, pepper, onion powder

  1. Melt the coconut oil in a skillet.
  2. Wash the vegetables and pat dry with a towel.
  3. Cut the end off the carrot and discard. Chop the rest of the carrot and place the pieces into the skillet.
  4. Cut the white potato, skin left on, into small pieces, adding them to the pan.
  5. Cook at medium-high until the vegetables about half done.
  6. Peel the sweet potato and chop, putting the pieces into the skillet with the other vegetables.
  7. Add the corned beef, and cooked until just about done. (I like some of my potatoes to be crispy, while others are still mushy.)
  8. Sprinkle the seasonings (to taste) over the foods in the pan, and cook another minute or two.
  9. Turn the stove off, and serve the meal.


  • Use leftovers from previous meals to save money.
  • Experiment with different vegetable and protein combinations, adjusting the seasonings accordingly.

Serving Suggestions

  • Serve with a side of greens topped with chopped fresh parsley and Parmesan cheese.
  • Serve at breakfast with a side of greens topped with a sunny side up egg.
  • Serve for lunch with raw vegetables.
  • Serve at dinner with apple slices sprinkled with organic cinnamon.

Photograph by Shannon L. Buck copyright 2015.    Photograph by Shannon L. Buck copyright 2015.





Don’t Like Vegetables?

Vegetables are such an important part of a healthy diet. They are essential and provide the body with, among other things, vitamins and provitamins, minerals, protein, and healthy carbohydrates.

I used to think I only liked a few: Corn, peas, white potatoes. Raw carrots, celery, and cauliflower. For the most part, that was what I ate for vegetables. Let’s face it, not all of it was truly even healthy.


I just don’t like a lot of things cooked.

Yup. I prefer most of my vegetables raw. I kept trying all these cooked vegetables, and was not impressed. Cooking changes the taste too much for me. It took me years to realize that I just prefer to consume a lot of things without them being cooked.

For instance?

Carrots, broccoli, pickled beets.

There are others.

How did I find this out?

In an effort to eat healthier, I decided I must start trying new foods. This took place about five or six years back and, each year, I try a few new things. It’s not always easy, but it’s working well for me.

I have learned:

  • I do not like many things cooked, but will eat them raw.
  • If you mix half white potato and half sweet potato you will get used to the latter two more easily. Then start using 1/3 white to 2/3 sweet. Eventually, that sweet potato will taste fine on its own. I do eat them cooked, and will also eat white potatoes raw. I do not, however, indulge in white potatoes all that often any more. Mainly when I’m very strapped for cash.
  • I don’t liked cooked carrots, unless I make a mash of them with white or sweet potato, or squash. The tactic above has not brought me any closer to liking cooked carrots on their own.
  • Raw baby spinach tastes wonderful. I despise canned spinach, and have not tried fresh cooked (yet).
  • I love tomatoes, cooked or raw, but they do not love me. Sadly, I can only consume a little each week, or I end up with horrible heartburn. Cooked, they mess with my stomach.
  • Raw peas and green beans in pods are delicious!
  • I like salad mixes. The kind that include chard and kale, even. If I don’t care for a green or two, I know I can add it to a healthy smoothie to derive nutritional value from it. Interestingly enough, if I don’t pack in too much, I will not notice the greens in a smoothie at all.
  • Beans are good, and not just the navy ones! However, I only really eat these once in a great while. Maybe two or three times a year. They are a bit of a no-no.
  • I used to only eat iceberg lettuce, but now I eat a variety of different types. They are delicious!
  • Sometimes it will take a few, or a few more, tries of something to realize you do really like it. If you aren’t sure how you feel about it, try it another way. I have to do this with Brussels sprouts. I have had them once. Steamed, I think, with butter. They did not work for me, but were not horrible tasting. Just not real pleasing. I’ll be trying them another way.
  • I love cabbage raw. Hate it cooked. This is why I don’t like boiled dinners.
  • I do like zucchini and yellow squash, raw.
  • I love celery raw.
  • Cucumbers are delicious, and I like them pickled.

So, I have learned a lot. And there are still vegetables I have yet to try.

What about you? How do you like your vegetables?



Lettuce Wrapped Turkey and Sweet Potato

Lettuce wraps are something I tried a few months back. I mainly use the lettuce leaves for wrapping salads to enjoy at work. However, I thought this would be an idea to use in the fall for heartier meals. What can you think up to put in lettuce wraps?

Lettuce Wrapped Turkey and Sweet Potato

(Serves 2)


1 cup diced leftover turkey

1 cup diced leftover baked or roasted sweet potato

4 lettuce leaves, washed and patted dry

1 tbsp coconut oil

  1. Melt the coconut oil in a skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add the turkey and potato, cooking until just warmed through. Stir occasionally.
  3. Place a 2 leaves of lettuce on each of 2 plates.
  4. Spoon the turkey and potato mixture evenly over the 4 leaves.
  5. Wrap the leaves around the mixture. Serve.


  • Use the rest of the lettuce to make a simple salad, adding slices of cucumber and a diced tomato. This can be used as the base for your next meal if you add some leftover turkey.

Serving Suggestion



Chicken and Sweet Potato Mash

Another Whole30 recipe. I made this one the other night, enough to have leftovers for another meal. I make enough leftovers of most things for at least one meal, so that I am not doing as much cooking on work days. I do most cooking on my days off. It just makes my days go easier.

This was a simple recipe to create.


1 carrot, rinsed and cut into small pieces

1 large sweet potato, rinsed and skin left on

chicken broth

shredded leftover chicken, as much as you want

sesame oil

  1. Put a little sesame oil into a skillet and warm on medium heat.
  2. Place the pieces of carrot in the pan and cook while the potato is ‘baking’.
  3. Place the sweet potato onto a plate and put into the microwave. Cook for about 6 minutes.
  4. Remove the potato and plate from the microwave. Cut the potato into pieces, skin and all. BE CAREFUL: The potato is very hot.
  5. Add the potato and chicken to the skillet.
  6. Pour a little broth over the mixture in the pan. You may have to do this every so often.
  7. Cook until the potatoes and carrots are mashable.
  8. Mash everything together.


  • When reheating, add a little coconut milk and mix up. Not much is needed.
  • Grow your own produce to save money.
  • Using leftover chicken also saves you money. However, canned chicken can be used, liquid and all. You wont need as much broth if you use this product.

Serving Suggestions

  • Serve with carrot, celery, and cucumber sticks, and a lemon rosemary dipping oil.



Deer Meat Casserole Made with Leftovers

For those who enjoy venison, deer meat is a delicacy. Each year I hope my step father will get a deer so I can have a roast and some steaks. All I can think about is how I will prepare meals using this type of meat.

This is a leftovers casserole, right down to the leftovers from a deer roast. The ingredients will vary according to what you have on hand, as this is meant to be a frugal meal. This is just one of many versions, and has no measurements. Just throw everything together in a casserole dish and bake.


deer meat, cut into small pieces

roasted potatoes, cut into bite-size pieces

vegetables such as peas and carrots

sweet potato and/or squash, cut into bite size pieces

1/8 to ¼ cup of water or homemade vegetable stock


rosemary or oregeno

sea salt

ground black pepper

  1. Place the first four ingredients into a baking dish and stir.

  2. Add the water or stock.

  3. Sprinkle the seasonings over the top.

  4. Bake at 350* to 400* depending on the oven, until the food is warmed through.


  • Use vegetables from the garden to save money.

  • It’s cheaper to buy a big size bag of sea salt than it is to buy multiple small ones throughout the year. Grinders are well worth the cost, in my opinion. This is a splurge for me. Same for black pepper.

Serving Suggestions

  • Serve with a side salad of any greens available at this time of year.

  • Shannon

Hearty Venison Soup

With the onslaught of colder weather, my mind turns to heartier meals that can be prepared quickly then simmered, roasted, or placed in the slow cooker to heat slowly. These meals can be served at lunch or dinner, depending on when you begin.

I also start thinking about how I hope my stepfather gets a deer or a moose this year, so I can have some meat 🙂 Any type of venison can be used in a soup, of course, so use whatever is on hand.


1 pound deer meat, cut into bite size pieces

1 can broth/stock

1 carrot

4 white potato

3 sweet potato

1 small squash, butternut or acorn



  1. Place the meat and some broth or stock in a pot and cook on high until.

  2. Peel the vegetables and cut into bite size pieces. Add these to the pot and cover with water.

  3. Add parsley and bring to a boil.

  4. Turn the temperature down to medium and cook until the meat and vegetables are done to your liking. Add a little more parsley just before turning the stove off.


  • Using produce you have grown yourself will cut the cost of this soup down to: Next. To. Nothing. Awesome 🙂

Serving Suggestions

  • Serve with a side of pickles and cucumber chunks, as well as warm paleo biscuits for dipping into the soup juices after the rest is gone.


Beef and Vegetable Soup

Soups are easy to prepare on the stove top or in a slow cooker. On the stove, simply cook until the vegetables and meat are cooked through. This will depend in how big the pieces of food are, and whether or not the meat was precooked. In the slow cooker, two or three hours on high works fine. Twice as long when slow cooking on a low temperature.


3/4 pound beef cut into bite-size pieces

1-1/2 cup, squash cut into bite-size pieces

2 sweet potatoes cut into bite-size pieces

carrots cut into bite-size pieces

beef or vegetable broth, or water (to cover)

parsley and rosemary

pepper to taste

salt to taste

  1. Put the vegetables into the crock or pot.

  2. Place the beef on top.

  3. Pour broth and/or water over the top of the vegetables and beef.

  4. Add some fresh parsley and rosemary, as well as a little salt and pepper.

  5. Cook until the meat and vegetables are done, adding more of the fresh herbs five minutes before serving.


  • You will save a great deal of money when using vegetables and herbs grown in your own garden.

Serving Suggestions

  • A side salad of greens, tomatoes, and cucumber will well go with this soup.

Happy cooking!