Shop Cheap

Sharing the best prices on groceries and other stuff in the Sacramento region.

June 29, 2010
July Fourth on a bang-up budget

No matter where you shop this week, you are going to find bargains that are easy on the budget. There's no reason not to celebrate Independence Day with a BBQ, a picnic or family gathering. We'll help with the shopping and the recipes, all you'll have to do is organize the cleanup.  Let's start by making a list.

If you park your cart at Raley's, check this out: Tri tip roast for $2.77lb; boneless, skinless chicken breasts for $1.87lb and pork ribs for $1.99lb. Ball Park meat franks are 2/$3 and Hillshire Farm sausage, bratwurst or links are 2/$6. (Why no sale on buns? Don't make me go to another store!) Watermelon is $2.77 each and blueberries are $4.77 for 2 pounds. Want dessert for the gang? Buy two pies and get the third for free. Dreyer's ice cream is $2.79 with coupon. Raley's trying to lure you into the store on Friday, Saturday and July 4. Here's what they have: white corn on the cob 5/$1 and a coupon for Arrowhead drinking water - $2.50 a case.

Mission tortilla chips are $1.77 a bag; Dean's guac is $2 and Ortega diced chilis or jalapenos are 99-cents each.

Don't want to cook? Slow-cooked ribs in the deli are $7.99; pre-packaged salads are 4/$9 and a 16-pieces of fried chicken are $9.99. Raley's veggie trays are $4.99 and $8.99.

Simply juices are 2/$5; Minute Maid lemonade or punch is 99-cents and 12-packs of Coke are $2.50 (when you buy 4).

Safeway has the best mix & match soda sale: Buy 2-12 packs, get 4 more free. Want chips to go with the soda? Lay's are $1.88 a bag and Mission tortilla chips are BOGO. Oscar Mayer meat weiners are buy one, get 2 free. And at Safeway, the buns are on sale, too. $1.19 a bag. Bush's Grillin' or Baked beans are 3/$5 and Hebrew National franks and Francisco sandwich rolls/buns are BOGO.

If you want to clip and save, check out the coupons for Hillshire Farm smoked sausage or Ball Park beef franks $1.99; Nabisco snack crackers $1.69; Wish Bone salad dressing $1.19; Best Foods mayo $1.99 and Kingsford charcoal $5.99.

Don't feel like cooking? St. Louis-style ribs are $7.99 in the deli. Roasted chicken meal deal, which includes a whole Signature Cafe chicken, deli salad or beans and a 2-liter Coke, is $8.99 and All-American Apple-Cherry pies are 2/$5. Signature Cafe 8-piece chicken is $5.99.

In produce, fresh cherries are $1.99lb; jumbo cantaloupe is 99-cents each; Eating Right salad blends are $2 a bag; whole pineapple is $2.99; berries are 2/$5 and personal watermelon is $3.99 each.

Arrowhead or Nestle drinking water is $3.50 a case; Simply Lemonade is 2/$5 and 6-packs of Pepsi in the bottle are 3/$9. Vitamin water is 88-cents.

Lucerne shredded or chunk cheese is $1.99; Pillsbury Flag cookies are 2/$5 and Jose Ole taquitos are $3.99.

There's no $5 Friday special this week - probably because of the holiday.

Save Mart has the best deal on corn on the cob. 6 ears for 96 cents. Driscoll's strawberries are buy 1, get 2 free and Bing cherries are $1.97lb. While we're in the produce dept., radishes, cilantro and green onions are 50-cents each; veggie trays are $5.99 and $8.99. Baby peeled carrots are $1.99 for a 2-lb bag; Roma tomatoes are 97-cents a pound and berries are 2/$4.

They also have the best deal on dogs and buns. Ball Park brand dogs are BOGO and Sunnyside Farms hamburger or hot dog buns are 79-cents (with coupon; $1.29 without) when you purchase $25 in groceries. Gallo salame is $3.99; Johnsonville brats or Italian sausage is $3.99 and pre-made Moran's hamburger patties are $2.99lb. Whole Foster Farms chickens are 99-cents a pound and Sunnyside Farms drumsticks, thighs or leg quarters are 99-cents a pound. Beef tri-tip is $2.77lb and pork spare ribs are $1.49lb. Kingsford charcoal is $5.99.

Doritos are $1.89 a bag; Tribe hummus is BOGO; and Nabisco snack crackers are $1.99. Mother's cookies or Cheez-It crackers are BOGO. In the drink dept., be sure to clip the coupon for 12-packs of Coke. Buy 2, get 2 free. A 128 oz.jug of Minute Maid OJ is $4.99 and Sunny Select drinking water is $2.50 a case. Minute Maid fruit drinks are $1 each.

For dessert, an 8-inch Strawberry Boston is $5.99; Sunny Select ice cream is $2.50 and Cool Whip is 99-cents.

Want independence from cooking? A 16-piece chicken platter is $9.99; Reser's salads are $3.99 and French or Sourdough baguettes are $1.19.

Come back Thursday for Shop Cheap's  July 4 recipe recommendations.



June 23, 2010
Recipe roundup: Iceberg, grapes, eggplant

The Shop Cheap Kitchen is alive and cooking this week with recipes from researcher Sheila Kern. The recipes all feature ingredients that are on sale this week. We have everything from Iceberg lettuce chopped salad (Iceberg is 33-cents a head at Save Mart) to Green Bean, Grape and Pasta toss (the grapes are a bargain this week, too). Enjoy!

Iceberg Lettuce Chopped Salad with "French" Dressing


Recipe courtesy Rachael Ray

Show: 30 Minute Meals Episode: What's Warm, Cozy and Fast? Dinner!

Yield: 6 servings


1 head iceberg lettuce, core removed and chopped

4 radishes, chopped

4 scallions, chopped

1/3 seedless cucumber, chopped

1 cup shredded carrots, available in produce section


3 tablespoons white wine vinegar

3 tablespoons sugar

1/4 cup ketchup

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, eyeball it

1 teaspoon garlic powder

2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

Salt and white pepper


Combine lettuce and chopped veggies in salad bowl.

Add all of the dressing ingredients into a blender. Put the top in place and blend on high until dressing is combined. Pour dressing over salad and toss. Adjust salt and pepper, to your taste.

Iceberg Lettuce with Blue Cheese Dressing


Yield: 8 servings


1 cup yogurt, preferably whole milk

1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese

1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice, or more as needed

Salt and ground black pepper

1 head iceberg lettuce, cored and cut into 8 wedges

1/2 cup toasted and chopped hazelnuts, pecans or walnuts, optional


1. Mash yogurt with blue cheese, lemon juice, a pinch of salt, and a grinding or two of pepper. Taste and adjust the seasoning, adding more lemon juice if necessary.

2. Place each wedge of iceberg lettuce on a plate, drizzle with dressing and sprinkle with nuts if using.

Green Bean, Grape, and Pasta Toss


Southern Living, July 2008

Yield: Makes 8 servings


1 cup chopped pecans

8 bacon slices

1 pound thin fresh green beans, trimmed and cut in half

1 (8-oz.) package penne pasta

1 cup mayonnaise

1/3 cup sugar

1/3 cup red wine vinegar

1 teaspoon salt

2 cups seedless red grapes, cut in half

1/3 cup diced red onion

Salt to taste


1. Preheat oven to 350°. Arrange pecans in a single layer on a baking sheet, and bake at 350° for 5 to 7 minutes or until lightly toasted and fragrant.

2. Cook bacon in a large skillet over medium-high heat 5 to 7 minutes or until crisp; remove bacon, and drain on paper towels. Crumble bacon.

3. Cook beans in boiling salted water to cover 5 minutes or until crisp-tender; drain. Plunge beans into ice water to stop the cooking process.

4. Meanwhile, prepare pasta according to package directions; drain.

5. Whisk together mayonnaise and next 3 ingredients in a large bowl; add pecans, green beans, pasta, grapes, and onion, stirring to coat. Season with salt to taste. Cover and chill 3 hours; stir in bacon just before serving.

Slow-Braised Pork with Black Grapes and Balsamic


Yield: Makes 4 to 6 servings


1 3 1/4-pound boneless pork shoulder (Boston butt), trimmed, cut into 3 equal pieces

4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided

8 large shallots, halved, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices (about 3 cups)

3 cups seedless black grapes (about 1 pound)

2 tablespoons sugar

1/2 cup balsamic vinegar

2 cups low-salt chicken broth

2 large fresh sage sprigs

4 large fresh thyme sprigs

2 large fresh rosemary sprigs


Preheat oven to 325°F. Sprinkle pork with salt and pepper. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in heavy large ovenproof pot over medium-high heat. Add pork to pot and cook until browned on all sides, about 13 minutes total. Transfer pork to plate; discard fat in pot.

Heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil in same pot over medium heat. Add shallots and grapes; sauté until shallots are golden, stirring occasionally, about 3 minutes. Add sugar; sauté 30 seconds. Add vinegar; bring mixture to boil and cook until slightly reduced, about 3 minutes. Add broth, all herb sprigs, and pork with juices from plate. Bring to boil. Cover pot and transfer to oven. Braise pork 1 hour. Using tongs, turn pork over and continue braising until meat is very tender, about 45 minutes longer. Using slotted spoon, transfer pork to platter; tent with foil.

Remove herb sprigs from pot and skim fat from surface of cooking liquid. Boil cooking liquid over high heat until thickened, about 7 minutes. Season sauce with salt and pepper. Pour over pork and serve.

Sauted Spinach with Almonds and Red Grapes


Servings: 4


1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1/4 cup blanched whole almonds, coarsely chopped

1/4 cup finely chopped onion

1/2 cup seedless red grapes

2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

Two 10-ounce packages of spinach, large stems discarded

2 tablespoons dry white wine, preferably Rioja

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

Salt and freshly ground white pepper


Heat the olive oil in a large skillet. Add the almonds and onion and cook over moderate heat until the almonds are golden, about 4 minutes. Add the grapes and garlic and cook for 2 minutes. Stir in the spinach in handfuls, adding more as the leaves wilt. When all of the spinach has been added, stir in the wine and butter. Season with salt and white pepper and serve at once.

Chicken Salad with Walnuts and Grapes


Serves 4 to 6


2 cups diced chicken

1/3 to 1/2 cup mayonnaise

2 tablespoons sour cream

1 cup seedless green grapes, sliced

3 green onions, with some green, thinly sliced

1 rib celery, thinly sliced

1/2 cup walnut pieces

1/4 teaspoon salt

Dash pepper

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 teaspoon honey, or to taste

Salad greens, optional

Shredded raddiccio, optional

Sliced avocado, optional


Combine the diced chicken with 1/3 cup mayonnaise, sour cream, sliced grapes, sliced green onions, sliced celery, walnuts, salt, pepper, and lemon juice. Stir in the honey and more mayonnaise, if needed. Serve the chicken salad mixture on salad greens and raddiccio and garnish with sliced avocado. For sandwiches, line sandwich rolls with lettuce leaves and fill with chicken salad.

Garlic Mushroom Risotto


Serves 6


1 lb mushrooms, sliced

4 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 onion, chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 cup arborio rice (or medium grain)

3 cups hot chicken stock (or bouillon)

1 cup hot water

1/2 cup romano cheese, shredded

1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped

salt and pepper


Saute mushrooms in butter. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Set aside.

Meanwhile, in a deep skillet, saute the onion and garlic in oil over medium heat until soft.

Stir in the rice and cook 1 minute, coating rice with the oil.

Stir in 1 cup of the hot broth and let simmer until the liquid is mostly absorbed, stirring frequently.

Repeat with the remaining broth and hot water.

Taste for doneness: the rice should be creamy and slightly chewy in the center, not dry.

Add more hot liquid if necessary to cook longer.

Total cooking time should be 20-25 minutes.

Stir in the mushrooms, cheese and parsley and season to taste.

Cook till warmed through.

Fresh Mushroom Fettuccine


Makes 4 servings


8 ounces uncooked fettuccine

3 cups sliced mushrooms (1/2 pound)

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

1/4 cup olive or vegetable oil

2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary leaves

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 clove garlic, finely chopped


1. Cook and drain fettuccine as directed on package; return to pan.

2. Add remaining ingredients; toss until fettuccine is coated with oil.

Simply Marinated Mushrooms


Servings: 6


1 cup water

1 1/2 pounds fresh mushrooms, stems removed

1/4 cup olive oil

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

3 teaspoons minced garlic

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

3 tablespoons dried parsley

1/8 teaspoon onion powder


In a large pot, bring water to a boil. Add mushrooms and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and drain.

In a large bowl, whisk together the olive oil, thyme, salt, lemon juice, garlic, pepper, parsley and onion powder. Add mushrooms and toss until coated. Chill in marinade overnight, and reheat to serve.

Easy Baked Eggplant Parmesan


Serves 4


1 large eggplant, sliced lengthwise into 1/2-inch-thick pieces (about eight)

2 eggs, beaten with a fork

1 1/2 cups panko bread crumbs (sun-dried tomato or plain)

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 (25-ounce) jar pasta sauce (roasted vegetable or any variety)

1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese


Preheat oven with a baking sheet inside to 375°F. Coat eggplant slices with beaten egg, then bread with panko crumbs. Spread oil on hot baking sheet and place eggplant slices on it in a single layer. Bake 15 minutes, flip and bake another 10 minutes.

Increase oven temperature to 475°F. In an 8 x 10-inch oven proof dish, layer pasta sauce, then eggplant, and top with cheeses. Repeat, finishing with cheese. Bake until the cheese melts and turns golden in spots, about 15 minutes.

Eggplant Pomodoro Pasta


From EatingWell: July/August 2009

Yield: 6 servings


2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 medium eggplant, (about 1 pound), cut into 1/2-inch cubes

2 cloves garlic, minced

4 plum tomatoes, diced

1/3 cup chopped pitted green olives

2 tablespoons red-wine vinegar

4 teaspoons capers, rinsed

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper, (optional)

12 ounces whole-wheat angel hair pasta

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley, or basil


Put a pot of water on to boil.

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add eggplant and cook, stirring occasionally, until just softened, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Add tomatoes, olives, vinegar, capers, salt, pepper and crushed red pepper (if using) and cook, stirring, until the tomatoes begin to break down, 5 to 7 minutes more.

Meanwhile, cook pasta in boiling water until just tender, about 6 minutes or according to package directions. Drain and divide the pasta among 6 shallow bowls. Spoon the sauce over the pasta and sprinkle parsley (or basil) on top.

Mediterranean Eggplant Dip


Makes 1 3/4 cups


1 cup canned garbanzo beans (chickpeas), drained

1 Tbsp. fresh mint leaves

1 clove garlic

1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice

1/2 tsp. kosher salt

1 cup grilled or roasted eggplant

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

Olive oil and fresh mint

Walnuts, toasted

Grilled pita wedges or focaccia


In food processor finely chop chickpeas, mint, and garlic. Add lemon juice, salt, and eggplant. With processor running, add olive oil in a steady stream; process until smooth. Transfer to serving dish; drizzle olive oil, sprinkle fresh mint, and walnuts. Serve with grilled pita.

Grilled Eggplant: spray grill with olive oil. Sprinkle 1/2 tsp. kosher salt. Grill on uncovered grill directly over medium coals for 8 to 10 minutes or until tender, turning once. Cool slightly; process in food processor until slightly chunky.

Rotisserie Chicken


Yield: 6 servings


1 (3 pound) whole chicken

1 pinch salt

1/4 cup butter, melted

1 tablespoon salt

1 tablespoon paprika

1/4 tablespoon ground black pepper


Season the inside of the chicken with a pinch of salt. Place the chicken onto a rotisserie and set the grill on high. Cook for 10 minutes.

During that time, quickly mix together the butter, 1 tablespoon of salt, paprika and pepper. Turn the grill down to medium and baste the chicken with the butter mixture. Close the lid and cook for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, basting occasionally, until the internal temperature reaches 180 degrees F (83 degrees C) when taken in the thigh with a meat thermometer.

Remove from the rotisserie and let stand for 10 to 15 minutes before cutting into pieces and serving.


June 22, 2010
It's going to be a grape week

Hi Shoppers. I hope you like seedless grapes because they are the one fruit that all three supermarkets have on sale this week. Red and green seedless for 87 cents a pound at Raley's; green seedless at Safeway for that same 87-cents a pound and black seedless at Save Mart for 97-cents a pound.

In addition to the unique variety of grapes, you'll find lots of other bargains at Save Mart this week. Here's what we like (lots of it in produce). Iceberg lettuce 3/99 cents; BOGO berries (all varieties); eggplant $1.49 each; limes 10/$1; peaches 97-cents a pound and avocado for $1.

Pork roast, lean ground beef and boneless skinless chicken breasts are $1.99lb in the Max Pak. General Mills cereal is $1.88 a box and Simply Juice is 2/$6. bohemian Hearth bread is $1.79 a loaf. Coupons (which require a minimum grocery purchase of $25) include Bar S jumbo meat franks for 49-cents; Kraft BBQ sauce for 59 cents and 12-packs of Coke/Sprite are buy 2, get 2 free.

In dairy, Sunnyside Farm eggs are $1.99 for 18; Simply Potatoes are 2/$5 and Dannon Light & Fit yogurt is 10/$5. Michelina's budget gourmet meals are 89 cents each and Eggo pancakes are 3/$5. Aquafina drinking water is $3.99 a case.

In the deli/bakery, ham off the bone and Butterball turkey is $5.99lb; sourdough bread is $1.49 a loaf and their Chicken Meal Deal is $7.99.

The Grape escape continues over at Raley's with red or green seedless for 87-cents a pound. Also in produce: tomatoes on the vine for 77-cents a pound, mangos 2/$1 and all berries are 2/$4. If you're clippin', check out the Aquafina drinking water for $3.33 a case; Keebler cookies and crackers for $1.88; Clorox bleach for $1.49; Kleenex for 89-cents a box and Pepsi or Pepper - buy 2, get 2 free.

In the deli, Nob Hill Trading Co. cheeses in the container are BOGO and oven-roasted turkey breast is $4.99lb.

Sutter Sirloin steak is $3.99lb and premium ground beef (80%) is $2.79lb.

Eggs are $1.49 a dozen. Michelina's gourmet meals are 89 cents each. Raley's own brands are quite the bargain this week. Pasta is 99-cents; tomato sauce is 3/99-cents; salsa is $1.89; green chiles are 75-cents a can and refries are 89-cents.

If you need snacks, Fritos, Cheetos and Rold Gold pretzels are 2/$3; Thomas' English muffins are $1.79 and Nob Hill Trading Co. coffee is $5.99.

Safeway's got the grapes, too. Green seedless for 87-cents a pound. They also have tomatoes on the vine for 77-cents a pound; packaged mushrooms for 99-cents each; 1-lb Eathing Right baby peeled carrots for 99-cents a bag and Fresh Express salads are 99-cents, too.

The Safeway weekend sale - designed to get you into the store on Saturday & Sunday - includes Goldfish for 88-cents; Gorton's seafood selections for $2.99; Ocean Spray cocktail drinks 2/$3; Freschetta Naturally Rising pizza for $3.99 and Primo Taglio turkey in the deli for $6.99lb.

Whole Foster Farms chickens are 79-cents a pound; whole roasted Signature Cafe chicken is $5.99. Foster Farms lunchmeat or chicken selections are BOGO. Nathan's Famous beef franks are BOGO, too. In the coupon dept., Eggo waffles (remember when they were hard to find?) are $1.77; Lucerne butter is $1.99; Tide Detergent is $5.99 and Soft Scrub cleanser is $1.99.

In the "less than $1 category," there's Bumble Bee solid white tuna; Safeway canned veggies; liters of 7-UP or A&W root beer; Lunchables; cream cheese; gatorade and Barilla pasta. In the bakery, cake slices are 99-cents each and Filone breads are less than $1, too.

Lots of necessities are 99-cents, including Colgate toothpaste; Softsoap; Right Guard deodorant; Chap Stick and Power Bars.

In produce, large cantaloupe is BOGO; cucumbers are 79-cents each and multi-color bell peppers are 2/$3.

Kellogg's cereals are $1.99 a box; Tostitos are BOGO; Safeway chunky salsa is $1.79; Ragu pasta sauce is $1.49 a jar and Kraft salad dressing is $1.49.

The $5 Friday special is Signature Cafe roasted turkey breast or turkey pot roast. In the bakery, Oroweat, Thomas' or Franciscan breads, bagels and muffins are BOGO.

Come back on Thursday for some summer recipes from the Shop Cheap kitchen.  .

June 16, 2010
Dad-pleasing recipes

It's Dad's day on Sunday so researcher Sheila Kern headed into the Shop Cheap kitchen looking for recipes that would make the guys happy. What she found were recipes for everything from Mango Ice Cream to tri tip and blue cheese burgers. Enjoy!

 Mango Salsa


Recipe courtesy Ellie Krieger

Yield: 4 to 6 servings


1 mango, peeled and diced

1/2 cup peeled, diced cucumber

1 tablespoon finely chopped jalapeno

1/3 cup diced red onion

1 tablespoon lime juice

1/3 cup roughly chopped cilantro leaves

Salt and pepper


Combine the mango, cucumber, jalapeno, red onion, lime juice and cilantro leaves and mix well. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Mango Ice Cream


Yield: about 1 1/2 quarts


2 cups ripe mango, diced, peeled

1 1/2 cups sugar

2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

2 cups milk

5 egg yolks

1 cup whipping cream


Combine mango, 1/2 cup of sugar and lime juice in a non-metallic bowl. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour. Make a custard by scalding the milk in a 2-quart saucepan. Whisk the egg yolks and 3/4 cup sugar in a mixing bowl. Add the hot milk in a thin stream while whisking. Return the mixture to the pan and cook over medium heat, uncovered, until thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon, about 3 minutes. Do not let it boil. Strain into a bowl, and let cool to room temperature.

Stir the mango mixture into the custard mixture. Stir in the cream. Taste for sweetness and add more sugar if desired. Freeze in an electric or crank ice cream maker, following the manufacturer's instructions.

Orange Mango Chicken


Yield: 4 servings


3 tablespoons olive oil

4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves

1/8 teaspoon ground thyme

salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1 lemon, juiced

1 cup orange juice

1 mango - peeled, seeded and sliced

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon


Heat the olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Place chicken breast halves in the skillet, and cook 5 to 10 minutes on each side, until no longer pink and juices run clear. Season both sides with thyme, salt, and pepper. Remove from heat, and set aside.

Heat the lemon juice in the skillet over medium heat, and scrape up browned bits. Mix in orange juice, mango, ginger, and cinnamon. Over high heat, cook and continuously stir 4 to 5 minutes, until thickened. Spoon over the cooked chicken breast halves to serve.

Cantaloupe Salad with Lime, Mint, and Ginger


Yield: Makes 4 to 6 servings


1 cantaloupe, halved, seeded, peeled

3 tablespoons fresh lime juice

3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint

2 teaspoons grated lime peel

2 tablespoons sugar

2 1/2 teaspoons grated peeled fresh ginger

2 teaspoons honey


Cut cantaloupe into 3/4- to 1-inch cubes (about 5 cups) and place in large bowl. Add lime juice, mint, and lime peel; toss to blend. Mix in sugar, ginger, and honey. Refrigerate salad until ready to serve, stirring occasionally, up to 3 hours.

Cantaloupe Smoothie


Makes 1 serving


1 banana

1/4 ripe cantaloupe, seeded and coarsely chopped

1/2 cup nonfat or low-fat yogurt

2 tablespoons nonfat dry milk

1 1/2 tablespoons frozen orange juice concentrate

2 teaspoons honey

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract


Place unpeeled banana in the freezer overnight (or for up to 3 months). Remove banana from the freezer and let it sit until the skin begins to soften, about 2 minutes. Remove the skin with a paring knife. (Don't worry if a little fiber remains.) Cut the banana into chunks; combine in a blender or food processor with cantaloupe, yogurt, dry milk, orange juice, honey and vanilla. Cover and blend until smooth. Tips & Notes: Make Ahead Tip: Freeze the banana for up to 3 months.

Cantaloupe and Cucumber Salad


Yield: 6 servings

1/2 cup yogurt, preferably Greek-style

2 tablespoons lime juice

1 tablespoon honey
1 cantaloupe, cut into bite-size pieces
2 kirby cucumbers, peeled and thinly sliced

2 ribs celery, thinly sliced

2 teaspoons chopped fresh mint

1/3 cup sliced almonds, toasted


In a large serving bowl, whisk together the yogurt, lime juice and honey. Add the cantaloupe, cucumbers, celery and mint to the dressing; toss to combine. Sprinkle with the toasted almonds.

Tip: Add shredded cooked chicken and chopped avocado for a main-course salad.

Baked Penne with Italian Sausage


Yield: 6 servings


1 (12 ounce) package dry penne pasta

2 teaspoons olive oil

1 pound mild Italian sausage

1 cup chopped onion

1/2 cup white wine

1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce

1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes with garlic

1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste

2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain.

Heat oil in a large, deep skillet. Place sausage and onion in the skillet and cook over medium high heat until evenly brown. Drain excess fat. Pour in wine, and cook for 1 minute, stirring, to deglaze the pan. Stir in tomato sauce, diced tomatoes and tomato paste. Simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Toss with cooked pasta, and place in a 9x13 inch baking dish. Sprinkle top with mozzarella.

Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until cheese is melted.

Italian Sausage and Peppers


Makes 4 servings


2 tbsp olive oil

1 large red bell peppers, seeded, cut into half-inch strips

1 large green bell peppers, cut into half-inch strips

1 yellow onion, halved, and cut in quarter-inch slices

2 cloves finely minced garlic

1 tsp white wine vinegar

pinch of cayenne

salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste

4 grilled Italian hot or sweet sausage

4 soft rolls, split


Add the olive oil, pepper strips, and onion to a cold, large skillet, and turn on the heat to high. When you can hear the peppers and onions sizzling, reduce the heat to medium, and sauté for 8-10 minutes, or until the peppers and onions become soft and sweet. Add the garlic, and cook for one minute, stirring. Turn off the heat and add the vinegar, cayenne, salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste.

Divide the hot pepper mixture evenly over the four rolls and grilled sausages.

Sausage Stuffed Tomatoes


Yield: 6 servings


6 large tomatoes

1 pkg. (19.76 oz.) Johnsonville Italian Sausage Links, casings removed

1/2 cup chopped onion

2 Tbsp. olive oil

1 cup chopped fresh spinach

2 tsp. minced garlic

3 Tbsp. cooking sherry

1/4 tsp. pepper

1 egg, lightly beaten


Using a sharp knife, slice 1/2 inch off the top of tomatoes; discard tops. Using a small knife and a spoon, remove pulp from tomatoes. Reserve 1 cup tomato pulp; chop coarsely and save for the filling. Invert tomato shells onto paper towels to drain. In a skillet, cook and crumble sausage until no longer pink; drain and set aside.

In the same skillet, cook onions in olive oil over medium-low heat until golden, stirring occasionally. Add the spinach, garlic and reserved tomato. Cook and stir over medium heat until spinach is wilted. Stir in the sausage, sherry and pepper. Cool slightly; stir in egg. Place tomato shells in a 2-qt. baking dish. Fill shells with sausage mixture. Bake, uncovered, at 350° F for 35-40 minutes or until hot.

Easy Grilled Tri Tip


Servings: 8


1/4 cup soy sauce

1/4 cup olive oil

2 tablespoons water

2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped

ground black pepper to taste

4 pounds beef tri tip, cut into 1/2 inch slices


In a large, non-reactive bowl, blend the soy sauce, olive oil, water, garlic, and pepper. Place the beef tri tip in the marinade. Cover, and marinate in the refrigerator at least 4 hours.

Preheat an outdoor grill for high heat, and lightly oil grate.

Grill the beef slices 3 to 5 minutes per side, or to desired doneness. Discard remaining marinade.

Hoisin-Marinated Tri-Tip Roast


Makes 4 servings


1/4 cup hoisin sauce

2 teaspoons minced ginger

3 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons rice vinegar

2 tablespoons soy sauce

Heaping 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 (2-pound) tri-tip roast

1 tablespoon olive oil


Stir together hoisin, ginger, garlic, vinegar, soy sauce, and pepper until well blended. Rub marinade all over roast, coating it well. Place in a glass baking dish, cover, and allow to marinate in the refrigerator at least 8 hours, but preferably overnight.

Remove tri-tip from the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature for 30 minutes. Heat the oven to 375°F. Blot roast dry with paper towels to remove some of the excess marinade.

Heat olive oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Sear roast for about 2 minutes per side or until nicely browned. Transfer roast to a small roasting pan or baking dish and place in the oven. Cook until it reaches an internal temperature of 125°F for medium rare, about 20 to 22 minutes.

Remove roast from the oven and cover loosely with foil. Let rest for 15 minutes before carving. Slice across the grain and serve.

Blue and Black Burgers


Yields: 4 servings


2 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves

4 brioche rolls, split

1 1/4 pounds ground beef chuck

4 ounces blue cheese, divided into four 1-inch chunks

Salt and coarsely ground black pepper

4 slices (thin) sweet onion


Prepare outdoor grill for direct grilling over medium heat.

In cup, combine oil and basil; brush oil on 1 cut side of each roll. Set rolls aside.

Hold one-fourth of beef in hand; press chunk of blue cheese into center, then lightly press meat around to enclose cheese completely. Burger will be about 1 1/2 inches thick. Repeat with remaining beef and blue cheese. Sprinkle burgers with 3/4 teaspoon salt and 1 tablespoon pepper to season both sides.

Place burgers on hot grill rack; cook 14 to 16 minutes for medium or until desired doneness, turning over once.

During last 2 minutes of cooking burgers, place rolls, cut sides down, on grill rack and heat until lightly toasted. Serve burgers with rolls and onion.

Southwestern-Style Burgers with Black Beans


Serves 6 to 8


2 pounds lean ground beef

1 can (16 ounces) black beans, drained and rinsed

1 can (4 ounces) chopped mild green chile peppers

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

sliced pepper jack cheese, optional


Combine beef with the beans, peppers, cumin, salt, and pepper; mix gently with hands until well blended. Form into patties and grill for about 5 to 10 minutes, or until done. If desired, top with cheese about a minute before they're done.

June 15, 2010
If Dads did the shopping...

Father's Day is Sunday so that got Shop Cheap to thinking..."What if Dads did the shopping?" It would be pretty easy this week. They would just have to remember to clip the coupons, look for BOGOS and remember their fruits and veggies.

So in honor of all the Dads out there, a shopping list with them in mind. Happy Father's Day and Happy Shopping!

Dad's first stop is Save Mart where he's filling the cart with the following:

Pork spareribs for $1.99lb; ground beef for burgers $2.49lb; Gallo salame (don't forget the coupon) at $3.49; BOGO Ballpark franks; Alaskan salmon fillets $5.99lb and oysers 2/$1.

In produce, Dad's got mangos 3/99 cents; grapes at 87-cents a pound and a cantaloupe for $1.97. Avocado for a $1 and Roma tomatoes for 97-cents a pound.

Klondike bars are $2.99; Jimmy Dean skillets are 2/$7 and the eggs are free; and Peets coffee is $7.99. Not that he knows about Greek yogurt, but Dannon now has the stuff for 98-cents a carton. And lastly a case of Crystal Geyser for $3.33.

Over at Raley's our Dad is shopping for Tri-tip, $2.77lb; pork spareribs for $1.67lb and Italian sausage for $3.49. A big bag of Kingsford charcoal is $6.99. For breakfast, there's Kellogg's cereal and Pop Tarts, $1.74 each when you buy 4; and cantaloupe for 97 cents.

Liters of Coke are 99-cents; Crystal Geyser is $3.33 a case and Dorritos are $1.99 a bag.

Over in produce, there's corn on the cob 5/$2 and cilantro and green onion 2/$1.

Last stop: The Bakery for Chocolate Strawberry or Strawverry Shortcake for $9.99.

Our Safeway Dad knows he has to be willing to clip coupons to get the best deals. This week it's $5 off Rancher's Reserve beef when you spend $25. To get to the $25, there's top sirloin steak for $3.99lb; London broil for $3.99lb and rib eye for $5.99lb. Evergood hot links are $3.99; fresh cooked salad shrimp is $3.99lb and boneless, skinless chicken breasts are $1.99lb.

Also on his list: Classico pasta sauce for $1.88; BOGO Lay's chips, Ken's salad dressing for $1.50 and Pepsi products - buy 2, get 2 free.

It's going to be tough to get Dad shopping on Sunday, but Saturday is a good possibility. The weekend deals at Safeway are worth the trip. For example, corn on the cob 4/$1; Simply lemonade 2/$3; Nabisco crackers $1.88 a box; Starbucks coffee $5.99; Hillshire Farm smoked sausage $1.99 a pack and a 2lb. bag of extra large cooked shrimp for less than $10.

Other stuff in his cart: a case of water for $3.49; Life cereal for $1.99; and BOGO eggs. If he's clippin', Dad can get Sargento cheese slices for $1.99; Kleenex for 79-cents a box and Lyson wipes for $1.79.

Mangos are $1 and Roma tomatoes are 99-cents a pound. Melons and berries are BOGO. Sun Chips are $2.49 a bag and Barilla pasta (to go with the Classico sauce) is 99-cents.

The $5 Friday special is the All-American Sub.

But in the end, Dad might just want to grab his own Father's Day Meal Deal: Signature Cafe smokehouse red ribs, deli counter salad or beans and a 2-liter Pepsi all for $9.99. For dessert, a single layer fudge cake is $4.99.

Come back on Thursday for some Dad-pleasing recipes.

June 9, 2010
Recipes: From blueberries to ribs

With all the produce, fish and ribs on sale it was easy for recipe researcher Sheila Kern to come up with great menu ideas. We have everything from broccoli salad to blueberry pancakes. For the main course how about fish tacos or some BBQ ribs? Enjoy

 Artichoke and Broccoli Pasta Salad


Serves 8


Salt and pepper to taste

3/4 pound dried penne pasta

2 tablespoons champagne vinegar or white wine vinegar

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 (12-ounce) jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained and chopped

1 small red bell pepper, cored, seeded and chopped

1 small green bell pepper, cored, seeded and chopped

2 cups small broccoli florets

1/2 cup sliced pitted Kalamata olives

1/2 cup sliced basil

1/2 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano or 1 cup crumbled feta cheese


Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, add pasta and cook until al dente, about 10 minutes. Drain well and set aside to let cool.

In a medium bowl, whisk together vinegar, garlic, salt and pepper. Slowly drizzle in oil while continuing to whisk constantly to make a dressing. Add pasta, artichoke hearts, bell peppers, broccoli, olives, basil, cheese, salt and pepper, toss gently to combine and serve.

Broccoli and Parmesan Casserole


Cooking Light, August 2006

Yield: 8 servings(serving size: about 1 cup)


8 cups coarsely chopped broccoli florets (about 2 pounds)

1/3 cup all-purpose flour (about 1 1/2 ounces)

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon dry mustard

1 1/2 cups fat-free milk

1 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth

1 cup (4 ounces) reduced-fat shredded extra sharp cheddar cheese

1/2 cup (2 ounces) grated Parmesan cheese, divided

2 tablespoons diced pimientos, drained

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Cooking spray

12 garlic Melba toast rounds


Cook broccoli in boiling water 3 minutes or until crisp-tender; drain.

Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup, and level with a knife. Place flour, salt, and dry mustard in a large, heavy saucepan over medium heat; gradually add the fat-free milk and chicken broth, stirring with a whisk until blended. Cook for 8 minutes or until it is thick, stirring constantly. Remove from heat, and add shredded cheddar cheese and 6 tablespoons of grated Parmesan cheese, stirring until melted. Stir in pimientos and pepper. Add broccoli, tossing to coat.

Spoon the broccoli mixture into a 13 x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray.

Place garlic Melba toast rounds in a food processor; pulse 10 times or until coarse crumbs measure 1 cup. Combine toast crumbs and the remaining 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, and sprinkle evenly over broccoli mixture. Spray top of casserole lightly with cooking spray. Bake at 400° for 15 minutes or until bubbly. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving.

Spicy Broccoli Salad


EatingWell: November/December 1994

Makes 4 servings


1 1/2 pounds broccoli

3 tablespoons chopped red bell pepper

3 tablespoons chopped red onion

3 tablespoons rice-wine vinegar, or distilled white vinegar

1 tablespoon sesame oil

2 teaspoons light brown sugar

1 teaspoon crushed red pepper

Salt, to taste


Cut off broccoli florets. Trim and peel stems; cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Place broccoli florets and stems in a steamer basket over boiling water; cover and steam until cooked but still crisp, 2 to 3 minutes. Refresh under cold water. Drain well.

Stir together bell pepper, onion, vinegar, oil, brown sugar and crushed red pepper in a serving bowl. Just before serving, add the broccoli and toss to combine. Season with salt.

Artichoke and Broccoli Frittata / Crustless Quiche


Serves 10


8 eggs

1/2 cup milk

1 (6 ounce) jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained

2 cups small fresh broccoli florets

3 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 onion, chopped

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

2 teaspoons fresh dill, minced

1/2 cup breadcrumbs (regular or gluten-free, fresh or dry)

2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese

1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese (not grated)

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil


Preheat oven to 350°F

Chop the artichoke hearts coarsely.

Heat olive oil in a heavy 10-inch oven-safe cast iron pan over medium flame.

Add onions and cook until they are translucent.

Add garlic and broccoli; saute until the onions have begun to brown and the broccoli is cooked through but still crisp. Remove from heat.

In a large bowl, combine eggs, herbs and spices and milk; whisk until well beaten.

Add parmesan, breadcrumbs, artichokes, and half of the cheddar cheese. Stir gently; pour mixture over the broccoli and onions.

Sprinkle remaining cup of cheddar cheese over the top of the eggs - Do not stir.

Bake for 30 minutes or until firm.

Place under the broiler for 2-3 minutes or until cheese is bubbly and lightly browned.

Serve hot or at room temperature.

Leftovers can be reheated in oven, microwave or toaster oven.

Lemon-Blueberry Muffins


Cooking Light, April 2003

Yield: 1 dozen


2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup sugar

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 cup butter

1 1/4 cups low-fat buttermilk

1 large egg

1 tablespoon grated lemon rind

1 cup blueberries

Cooking spray

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1/2 cup powdered sugar


Preheat oven to 400°.

Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour and next 5 ingredients (flour through nutmeg) in a medium bowl; cut in butter with a pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse meal.

Combine buttermilk, egg, and rind; stir well with a whisk. Add to flour mixture; stir just until moist. Gently fold in blueberries.

Spoon batter into 12 muffin cups coated with cooking spray. Bake at 400° for 20 minutes or until the muffins spring back when lightly touched. Remove muffins from pans immediately, and place on a wire rack to cool.

Combine lemon juice and powdered sugar in a small bowl. Drizzle glaze evenly over cooled muffins.

Note: If you are serving the muffins for brunch, you can make these muffins up to 2 days ahead and glaze them that morning.

Oatmeal Buttermilk Blueberry Pancakes


Yield: a dozen pancakes


1/2 cup rolled oats

1/2 cup low-fat milk

1 cup whole wheat flour

1/2 cup unbleached all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 tablespoon sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 large eggs

1 1/2 cups buttermilk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 tablespoons canola oil

1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries


1. Combine the milk and rolled oats in a bowl, and set aside.

2. Sift together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, sugar and salt.

3. In another bowl, whisk the eggs, then add the buttermilk and whisk together. Then whisk in the vanilla extract and the oil.

4. Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and quickly whisk together. Do not overbeat; a few lumps are okay. Fold in the oats and milk. Let sit for one hour, or refrigerate overnight.

5. If necessary, spray the hot griddle with pan spray. Drop by 3 to 4 tablespoons onto the hot griddle. Place six or seven blueberries on each pancake. Cook until bubbles begin to break through, two to three minutes. Turn and cook for about 30 seconds to a minute on the other side, or until nicely browned. Remove from the heat, and continue until all of the batter is used up.

6. Serve hot with a small amount of butter and maple syrup.

Baked Red Snapper with Garlic


Serves 2


2 red snapper fillets, about 6 to 8 ounces each

4 tablespoons butter

1 medium clove garlic, pressed or minced

3 or 4 drops Worcestershire sauce

1/2 teaspoon Creole or Cajun seasoning, or your own favorite seasoning blend, with salt

1/8 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

1 to 2 teaspoons minced fresh parsley

1 teaspoon snipped fresh or frozen chives, optional

3 to 4 tablespoons plain or seasoned bread crumbs

2 tablespoon freshly grated parmesan cheese, optional


Place snapper fillets in a baking dish which has been sprayed with a butter-flavored baking spray.

In a skillet, melt butter with garlic, Worcestershire sauce, Creole seasoning blend, pepper, parsley, and chives, if using. Cook on low for 2 minutes, just to blend flavors. Brush both sides of fish fillets with the butter and herb mixture. Toss bread crumbs in the remaining butter mixture; sprinkle over the fillets. Bake at 400° for about 12 minutes, depending on thickness of fillets, until fish flakes easily and is no longer translucent.

Sea Salt & Lime Grilled Fish Tacos


Serves: 4


1 pound (1-inch thick) red snapper fish fillets

1/4 cup lime juice

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

1/4 cup canola oil

1/4 cup prepared salsa verde

1/4 cup reduced-fat mayonnaise

1 teaspoon sea salt, divided

2 cups shredded coleslaw blend

16 avocado slices (about 2 small avocados)

8 corn tortillas

2 limes cut in half


Preheat grill to medium-high heat.

Combine lime juice, cilantro, oil and red snapper in large zip top bag; marinate in refrigerator for 20 minutes.

For creamy salsa verde, combine salsa and mayonnaise in mini food processor or blender. Puree until smooth.

Remove fish from marinade, season with 1/2 teaspoon sea salt, and place on hot grill. Grill fish for 6 minutes on each side and remove. Let rest several minutes then flake fish with fork.

Place lime halves on grill, flesh side down, along with tortillas for 1 minute or until limes are grill marked and one side of tortillas are toasted. Remove and bend tortillas, toasted side out, into taco-shape.

Fill each tortilla with 1/4 cup slaw and 2 slices avocado. Divide fish evenly among tacos and drizzle each with 1 tablespoon sauce. Sprinkle with remaining sea salt and serve with grilled lime half.

Grilled Red Snapper and Mango with Cilantro-Lime Vinaigrette


Yield: Makes 4 servings


6 tablespoons olive oil

5 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

3 tablespoons fresh lime juice

1 1/2 teaspoons grated lime peel

4 5- to 6-ounce red snapper fillets

1 large mango, peeled, cut into thick wedges

3/4 teaspoon cumin seeds

8 large red-leaf lettuce leaves


Prepare barbecue (medium heat). Whisk oil, 4 tablespoons cilantro, lime juice, and lime peel in small bowl. Season vinaigrette with salt and pepper. Brush all sides of fish and mango with some of vinaigrette. Reserve remaining vinaigrette. Sprinkle fish and mango with salt, pepper, and cumin seeds. Grill fish without turning until fish is just opaque in center and mango is soft and beginning to brown, about 6 minutes.

Overlap 2 lettuce leaves on each of 4 plates. Top with fish and mango. Drizzle with remaining vinaigrette. Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon fresh cilantro.

Prize Winning Baby Back Ribs


Yield: 6 servings


1 tablespoon ground cumin

1 tablespoon chili powder

1 tablespoon paprika

salt and pepper to taste

3 pounds baby back pork ribs

1 cup barbeque sauce


Preheat grill for high heat.

In a small jar, combine cumin, chili powder, paprika, salt, and pepper. Close the lid, and shake to mix.

Trim the membrane sheath from the back of each rack. Run a small, sharp knife between the membrane and each rib, and snip off the membrane as much as possible. Sprinkle as much of the rub onto both sides of the ribs as desired. To prevent the ribs from becoming too dark and spicy, do not thoroughly rub the spices into the ribs. Store the unused portion of the spice mix for future use.

Place aluminum foil on lower rack to capture drippings and prevent flare-ups. Lightly oil grate, and lay ribs on top rack of grill. Reduce heat to low, close lid, and leave undisturbed for 1 hour. Do not lift lid at all.

Brush ribs with barbecue sauce, and grill an additional 5 minutes. Serve ribs as whole rack, or cut between each rib bone and pile individually on a platter.

Dry Rub Baby Back Ribs


Recipe courtesy The Deen Brothers, 2008

Show: Paula's Home Cooking Episode: BBQing with Bobby


1 tablespoon paprika

1 1/2 teaspoons dark brown sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated orange zest

1 1/4 teaspoons salt

3/4 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, to taste

4 pounds baby back ribs, cut into 2-rib portions


In a small bowl, stir together all ingredients except the ribs. Rub spice mixture all over the ribs. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate ribs for at least 2 hours or up to 12 hours.

Preheat the grill to medium heat.

Arrange the ribs on the barbeque and grill for 40 to 45 minutes, turning with tongs occasionally until meat is tender and crisp on the outside.


June 8, 2010
Shop early and often

Glad that Primary is over so we can concentrate on .... SHOPPING!

In the grocery world it's not about winning or losing, it's how to Shop Cheap. And this week it's all about fresh fruit, some veggies and ribs.

Let's start with Raley's where they have a couple things going on. First, they are asking Moms in the region to join an online advisory panel ( so that the local chain can make grocery shopping more mom-friendly. Amy Davis sent Shop Cheap the info so Shop Cheap decided to join and share her wisdom. You can join, too, and share your opinion and - possibly - score a copy of Raley's 75th Anniversary Something Extra Cookbook.

Now on to this week's bounty: First up, blueberrries. $1.47 for a 6oz container is a pretty sweet price. Want more? An 18oz. carton is only $3.97. Baby Backribs are BOGO and broccoli is 77-cents a pound. Stouffers Mac&Cheese is $1.99 and combine General Mills cereals and Betty Crocker fruit snacks and you only pay $1.49 a box. (must buy 4).

If you live for the coupon, get a clip of this: Sara Lee loaf bread is $1.89; 12 packs of 7-Up, A&W and Sunkist are $2.99 and a case of Raley's Purified water is $2.99.

Dover Sole or Snapper is $3.99lb; Jennie-O ground turkey or Italian sausage links are $3.50 a package  and a 16-piece fried chicken deal is $9.99 in the deli.

Crystal Geyser sparkling water is 88-cents; Hansen's Soda is $2.50 for a 6-pack and a gallon of Minute Maid OJ is $5.99. An 18-pack of eggs is $1.99 and frozen Eggo pancakes are $1.69 a box. Michelina's lean gourmet entrees are $1 each and Dreyer's fruit bars are $3 a box.

Bring cherries are $2.77lb; white corn on the cob is 2/$1 and a 5-lb. bag of Idaho potatoes is $1.77.

We are going to continue our shopping adventure over at Save Mart where you will find the best price around for red seedless grapes - 77-cents a pound. Roma tomatoes are 47-cents a pound and Romaine hearts in the package are $1.97. A 4-pack of avocado is $1.97 and fresh green beans are $1.49lb.

In the meat dept. London broil is $1.99lb; Hebrew National beef franks are BOGO and Foster Farms ground turkey is BOGO, too.

12-packs of Pepsi, Dr. Pepper or Dew are 3/$10 and Lay's or Doritos chips are buy 2, get 1 free.

Michelina's Lean gourmet entrees are $1 each; Jimmy Dean entrees or breakfast bowls are $1.99 and Sara Lee frozen pies are 2/$5. Simply Juice - orange or apple - is $2.99 and Martinelli's sparkling juice is $2 a bottle. Kellogg's cereals are buy 3, get 3 free. Thomas' bagels are BOGO and Hansen's apple juice is $1.50 a jug.

Safeway is packin' produce this week with red seedless grapes for 98-cents a pound; red or yellow bell pepper for 99-cents each; BOGO organic strawbrrries; 2 pounds of blueberries for $6.99 and corn on the cob 2/$1.

I conquered the Mix&Match demon over the weekend and ended up saving 41% at the checkout. Here's the trick: MAKE A LIST. There's got to be 8 things that you need, like:

Arrowhead water ($2.99 a case); Capri Sun ($1.49); Cheerios ($1.49) Dew or Pepsi (83 cents); Kraft Mac&Cheese (49 cents) Rosarita refries (79-cents); Tree Top apple juice ($1.49) and Arrowhead sparkling water (49 cents). See how easy that was!

Now for the other stuff. Foster Farms split chicken breasts are 99-cents a pound; fresh Snapper fillets are $3.99lb and bologna is BOGO. Safeway variety breads are $1.99 a loaf; Signature Cafe pizza in the deli is $4.49 and Weight Watchers yogurt is 50-cents a cup.

Get clippin' with coupons for eggs - 99 cents; butter - $1.99; ice cream cups - 49 cents; and bath tissue or paper towels - $4.79. 

The $5 Friday special is a pound of deli sliced Primo Taglio pan-roasted turkey or Black Forest ham. Also in the deli, you can get a coupon for a free signature sandwich, kind of like a BOGO sandwich. Pick up Filone breads in the bakery for 99 cents and make a great sandwich with the ham or turkey.

If you live near a Grocery Outlet, you might want to check out some of their deals. Grab a seedless watermelon for $2.99; avocado for 50-cents; an 18-pack of effs for $1.49; Challenge butter for $1.99 and a full quart of Ben & Jerry's chocolate fudge brownie ice cream for $1.99. And the deal of the day: martinelli's Sparkling Cider for $1.79 a bottle.

Come back on Thursday for some summertime recipes.  


June 3, 2010
Recipes focus on fruit and veggies

With all the fruit and veggies ripe and ready to go, Shop Cheap asked researcher Sheila Kern to gather recipes that we can use all summer.

Lots of berries, tomatoes and other goodies. Enjoy

Individual Cherry-Blueberry Trifles


EatingWell: May/June 2010


1 1/4 cups halved pitted fresh cherries or thawed and drained frozen cherries

1 1/4 cups fresh blueberries or thawed and drained frozen blueberries

1 tablespoon light brown sugar

16 ladyfingers (see Note)

1 cup nonfat vanilla Greek yogurt (see Note)

4 tablespoons toasted sliced almonds (see Tip)


Toss cherries, blueberries and brown sugar in a medium bowl. Layer 2 ladyfingers, about 1/4 cup fruit mixture and 2 tablespoons yogurt in four 10- to 12-ounce tumblers or similar-size glasses. Repeat with another layer of ladyfingers, fruit and yogurt. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 1 day. Top each serving with 1 tablespoon almonds just before serving.

Tips & Notes

Make Ahead Tip: Cover and refrigerate for up to 1 day. Top with almonds just before serving.

Notes: For this recipe, we recommend using ladyfingers with a soft, sponge-cake texture found in the in-store bakery of most supermarkets. The crunchy Italian ladyfingers (sometimes found near specialty cookies) are too big to fit into individual serving dishes and won't soften as well.

Greek-style yogurt is made by removing the whey from cultured milk, which gives the yogurt an extra-thick and creamy texture. Look for it with other yogurt in large supermarkets.

Tip: To toast sliced almonds, place in a small dry skillet and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until fragrant and lightly browned, 2 to 4 minutes.

Strawberry and Mozzarella Salad


Show: Healthy Appetite with Ellie Krieger

Yield: 4 servings, serving size: 1 3/4 cup


2 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1 heart romaine lettuce, torn or cut into bite-sized pieces (3 cups lightly packed)

1 8-ounce container of strawberries, hulled and sliced

3 ounces part-skim mozzarella cheese, diced (about 3/4 cup)

1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, cut into ribbons


In a small bowl whisk together the oil, vinegar salt and pepper. Place the lettuce in a large bowl and toss with half the dressing. Place the lettuce onto 4 salad plates.

Toss the strawberries with the remaining dressing and place 1/4 of the berries on top of each mound of lettuce. Top each with cheese and sprinkle with the basil.

Pasta Salad with Tomatoes and Corn


Bon Appetit | April 2000


5 tablespoons olive oil

5 tablespoons red wine vinegar

1/2 cup chopped fresh basil

2 large garlic cloves, chopped

1 1/2 cups fresh corn kernels (cut from 3 ears) or frozen, thawed

1 1/4 pounds plum tomatoes, chopped

8 ounces penne pasta, freshly cooked

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese


Whisk 4 tablespoons oil, vinegar, basil and garlic in large bowl to blend. Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add corn; sauté 3 minutes. Add corn to dressing in bowl. Add tomatoes, pasta and cheese to bowl and toss to blend. Season salad with salt and pepper.

Grilled Tomatoes with Basil Vinaigrette


Southern Living, July 1997

Yield: 6 servings


3 yellow tomatoes

3 red tomatoes

3 tablespoons olive oil, divided

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar

2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

Garnish: fresh basil sprigs


Cut tomatoes in half; thread onto skewers, alternating colors. Brush with 1 tablespoon oil; sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Grill, covered with grill lid, over medium heat (300° to 350°) 10 minutes, turning skewers often.

Combine remaining 2 tablespoons oil, vinegar, and basil; drizzle over kabobs. Garnish, if desired.

Summer Bean Salad


Servings: 8


1 (15 ounce) can light red kidney beans, drained and rinsed

1 (15 ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed

1 small green bell pepper, chopped

1 small yellow bell pepper, chopped

1 1/2 cups chopped fresh tomatoes

2 green onions, finely chopped

1 cup chunky salsa

1/2 cup red wine vinegar

2 tablespoons chopped cilantro


In a bowl, gently toss together the kidney beans, black beans, green bell pepper, yellow bell pepper, tomatoes, and green onions. In a separate bowl, mix the salsa, vinegar, and cilantro. Pour dressing over the bean mixture, and gently stir to coat. Chill at least 1 hour in the refrigerator before serving.

Red, White and Blueberry Salad


Serves: 8


2 3/4 cups fresh blueberries

2 1/2 cups fresh raspberries

2 3/4 cups fresh strawberries

1 container (8-oz. size) vanilla yogurt

1/2 cup sour cream

2 tablespoons cream sherry

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 1/2 tablespoon honey

3 tablespoons slivered almonds, toasted


Rinse and stem the fresh berries, being sure to discard any hard or too-seedy fruit. Drain well to remove all excess water. Put all the berries in a large mixing bowl and gently toss with your hands to combine.

In a separate mixing bowl, combine yogurt, sour cream, sherry, lemon juice, and honey. Stir well to blend all dressing ingredients. Spoon equal portions of the berry mixture into each individual serving bowl. Top each serving evenly with some of the yogurt mixture, and sprinkle toasted slivered almonds over each. Refrigerate to store, but serve at room temperature for maximum flavor.

Baked Parmesan Tomatoes


EatingWell: August/September 2006

Servings: 4


4 tomatoes, halved horizontally

1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

1 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano

1/4 teaspoon salt

Freshly ground pepper, to taste

4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil


Preheat oven to 450° F.

Place tomatoes cut-side up on a baking sheet. Top with Parmesan, oregano, salt and pepper. Drizzle with oil and bake until the tomatoes are tender, about 15 minutes.

June 1, 2010
Mix & Match but here's the catch....

Here we go again. Just when you think it's safe to go back into the kitchen, the pantry is empty and the fridge is cleaned out. Luckily, it's Wednesday and time to scan the ads for everything you need to Shop Cheap.

Here's what we like this week.

If you can keep track of what's in your cart, you'll save at Safeway. The headline on their Mix&Match sale - Buy 8/Save $4 - requires shoppers to keep track - or at least make a list. For example, Tropicana OJ in the 89oz container is $2.99; a case of Arrowhead is $2.99; Pepsi and Dew is 88 cents; Kraft Mac&Cheese is 49 cents; Cheerios and Frosted Flakes are $1.49; Ultra detergent is $2.99 and Hunt's pasta sauce or Golden Grain pasta is 88 cents. Just remember, you must buy 8 or 16 or 32 to get those prices.

Cherries are also a bargain this week at $1.97lb. Other fresh produce: leaf lettuce for 79 cents; broccoli for 97-cents a pound and peaches for $1.49lb.

In the other stuff category, London broil is $2.29lb; boneless center cut pork chops are $2.99lb and Johnsonville sausages are $2.99. In the coupon corner, Safeway Select fruit bars are $1.49; Dole juice blends are $1.88 and Jimmy Dean breakfast is $3.99.

In the Deli, Swiss cheese or Ham off the Bone is $5.99lb; Signature Cafe salads are $3.99 and the Friday Only $5 special is whole roasted  chicken.

Save Mart has the best buy on avocado at 2/$1. Driscoll's strawberries are BOGO. Cherries are $2.97lb and raspberries, blackberries or blueberries are 2/$5. There's no excuse not to eat your fruit and veggies! Iceberg lettuce is 97-cents a head; tomatoes on the vine are $1.97lb and bags of carrots are 2/$3.

Buy 3lbs or more of petite sirloin steaks or ground round and the price is $2.99lb. Sunnyside Farms boneless, skinless chicken breasts are $1.99lb and Ball Park meat franks are BOGO. Cocktail shrimp are $3.99lb.

If you are out of soda after the long weekend, 24-packs of Pepsi or Dew are 2/$10 (but you must buy two. If you're looking to load up on cereal, Kellogg's has a deal for you. Buy 3 boxes for $10.98 and get three more boxes free. That's $1.83 a box. If you don't need that much cereal, go in with a neighbor or relative and split the cost!

Minute Maid OJ is $2 a carton.

Heading over to Raley's, we are going to grab a pack of boneless, skinless chicken breasts for $1.87lb and a London broil for $2.47lb. Raley's Grain salads (wheat berry, Tabouli, wild rice or black and mahogany rice) sound good and they are BOGO.

Fresh Express salads in the bag are 97-cents each. but if you buy NatureSweet cherry tomatoes and Marie's pourable dressing, you get the salad for free.

It looks like the warm weather is going to hold, so you might want to check out the "Cool Treats sale." Klondike bars are $2.99; Breyers ice cream or fruit bars are $2.99 Popsicles are 2/$3. If you buy the peanut butter (Jif for $2.49) and the jelly (Smucker's at $2.49) Raley's will throw in the bread for free. A case of Arrowhead is $3.49.

Over in produce, cherries are $2.77lb; corn on the cob is 2/$1 and blueberries are 2/$4 for a 6oz container. Large cantaloupe is $3 and grapes are $1.79lb.

That's kind of it for this week. Come back on Thursday for some "get ready for Summer recipes." 

About Shop Cheap

Pam Dinsmore is The Bee's Community Affairs Director. When she's not working, she's shopping. The goal of this blog is to help you save time and money at the grocery store. She's pretty good at it but she can't do it alone. That's where you come in, sharing your tips and secret methods for saving money. You can either respond to the blog or email her at

October 2013

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