$10 buck dinners!

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Pork Loin with Twice Baked Potato

I regularly find pork loin on sale at my local discount grocery store. Usually I have to buy two loin, but for 2.99 a lb, I’ll gladly oblige. Know what I mean? It’s completely worth it, right? Loin is that special, tender meat that most everyone loves. However, it can get boring or expensive if you try to gussy it up. So, how do you spice up the meal? Well, the side dish, of course!

This side is perfect for parents of picky eaters. I mean, most kids refuse any food that’s green in color and, in particular, healthy for you. Depending on how small you cut up your cooked broccoli, will depend on whether or not the kids even notice the green. Even beyond broccoli, there’s so much you could add…from ground beef to bacon or even avocado. The possibilities truly are endless. And tasty too!

Roast Pork Tenderloin:

1 pork tenderloin – $4.51


1/2 cup soy sauce – $.45
2 oranges – $.50
1 lime – $.20
1 tablespoon Dijon – $.15
1 clove garlic, crushed – $.10
2 green onion, diced – $.15
1 tsp Soul Seasoning – pantry
*1 1/2 tsps Pepper – pantry

COST: $6.06

Place the pork tenderloin in a plastic, sealable bag or deep glass bowl. Squeeze juice of oranges and lime into measuring bowl. Add remaining marinade ingredients, except pepper, and whisk to mix. Pour over tenderloin and seal bag or bowl and set aside at room temp for 1 hour. If you have time, marinate overnight in the refrigerator.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Note: You can grill as well. It just depends on time and which you prefer.

Drizzle 1 tsp canola oil on small roasting pan. Remove pork tenderloin from marinade and place on oil of roaster. Drizzle 1 more tsp oil on tenderloin and sprinkle with pepper. Roast for 45 minutes. Allow meat to sit about 10 minutes before cutting into 1 1/2 inch serving pieces.

Broccoli & Cheese Twice Baked Potato:

4 russet or baking potatoes (medium to large in size) – $1.51
1/2 cup sour cream – $.45
3/4 cup shredded cheese – $.50
2 cups broccoli (steamed, seasoned & chopped) – $.50
2 green onions, diced (garnish) – $.15
2 Tbsps butter – $.25
1 tsp salt (less, if you add bacon to potatoes) – pantry
1/2 tsp black pepper – pantry
1 Tbsp Olive Oil – pantry
1/4 cup cooked, crumbled bacon – optional

COST: $3.36

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Rub potatoes with olive oil and place directly on rack or on backing dish. Do NOT wrap in tin foil or cover in any way. Bake potatoes for 1 hour (or until done).

Let cool for a few minutes, then cut potatoes in half. Scoop softened potato out and place in glass bowl. Leave skin intact. Make sure to leave about 1/8 to 1/4 inch of potato flesh intact as this will help the potato shell hold it’s shape for stuffing.

Add butter, sour cream, salt, pepper, 1/4 cup of the shredded cheese and mix well. You will also need to add a dash of half and half or milk as well. Start with just a few tablespoons and adjust to your desired texture.

Fold in steamed and chopped broccoli. Fill potato shells with potato mixture and top with remaining cheese and sprinkle bacon on top (in desired).

Bake for 20-25 minutes in a 425 degree oven. Add green onion before serving.


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Jalapeno Cheddar Sliders and twice cooked fries

Keep an eye out at the butcher or your local grocery store for manager specials. Some stores have bins and some just have these items mixed in with the other meats. At my local store, the butcher routinely does some premixed and seasoned meat and sausages. If they don’t all sell, they reduce the price in half and run a “manager” special. I love these sales! It’s a chance to taste someone else’s ideas and saves me some work. Shoot, why not!?

Jalapeno Cheddar Sliders:

2 lbs (2 packages, 2 patties each of pre-packaged burgers from the butcher) – $2.09 and $2.31 (Manager’s Special)
1 package of dinner rolls (10-12 count) – $1.99
10 slices of cheddar or other cheese – $1.25
1/4 head lettuce, cleaned and prepped – $.25
2 roma tomatoes, sliced – $.40

COST: $8.29

I simply broke down the prepackaged patties I got on sale from the butcher. If you don’t have this option, you can use my Serrano Cheddar burger recipe and accomplish the same thing.

Using the premixed burgers, separate meat mixture into 12 equal balls. Now form balls into small patties no more than one inch thick and place on hot grill or griddle with a spatula. Cook 3-4 minutes on each side or to your preferred temp. Once cooked, place slices of cheese on each burger and shut grill or cover with lid for 30 seconds.

Serve with whatever condiments you desire and lettuce and tomato.¬† And don’t forget the twice-cooked fries!

Twice-Cooked Fries

6-8 red or white potatoes – $1.57
1 Tbsp Paprika – pantry
1 tsp Garlic Powder – pantry
2 Tbsps canola or olive oil – pantry
1 tsp Sea Salt – pantry
1 tsp Pepper, fresh ground if possible – pantry

COST: $1.57

Clean and pierce potatoes with knife. Microwave or bake till near done, not complete. Let cool.

Mix garlic, paprika, salt and pepper and set aside.

When potatoes are cool, peel skin and slice. Season with 1/2 your dry mix and fry in a non stick pan. Make sure your oil is heated to medium hot before placing potatoes in. Let cook till brown and crisp on one side, then flip. Once fries done, remove and place on paper towel to drain. Dust with remaining seasoning mixture and serve.


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