Delectable Dime

meal planning on a budget

Back to Baking!

Delectable Dime

Back to Baking by Faith Escher

Due to high temperatures, busy days, and heat waves this last summer, I haven’t felt the need to use my oven in quite a while. Most of my meals over the summer consisted of fast, one pan dishes or light salads and bowls. But as the whether starts to change and the temperature begins to cool, I find myself wanting slow-cooked comfort foods that are health conscious.

I recently went apple picking at an orchard near my house. It was so fun to taste all the different apples and ciders and to see the colors of fall. When I got home I started looking for recipes for delicious ways to bake my newly picked apples and found a myriad of fun baking options.

This activity launched me back into baking mode. I started thinking about what I love about making food in the oven. I love that you can set a timer after some light prep and let the oven do the work for you! I love that the oven warms up the whole house and provides a tantalizing aroma. Another thing I love about baking is that due to the slow cooking nature of an oven, all the ingredients blend and melt together so cohesively that you end up with a one dish wonder! So as the days cool off, kick off your shoes, preheat the oven and let the baking begin!

Back to Baking

Back to Baking

Total Budget: $100 or less

All recipes serve 4

NOTE: Garlic (2) = how many recipes the ingredient garlic is used in. For example, “Garlic (2)” means we will be using garlic in two of our recipes for this week.

The Shopping List For All 5 Dinners

  • 1 Garlic bulb – $0.50 (4)
  • 1 Lemon – $0.39 (1)
  • 2 14-16 oz Blocks of firm tofu – $2.50 (2)
  • 1 Bin or bunch of spinach – $2.50 (1)
  • 18 oz or less of rolled oats – $2.48 (1)
  • 1 Bunch of fresh basil – $1.50 (1)
  • 1 Bunch of fresh chives – $1.00 (1)
  • 1 Large carton of crimini mushrooms – $4.29 (1)
  • 16 oz or less of ground flax seeds – $2.68 (1)
  • 4.5 oz Container or less of nutritional yeast – $6.00 (1)
  • 8 oz Jar of sun-dried tomatoes – $3.29 (1)
  • 1 oz Container of dried dill – $3.99 (1)
  • 1 oz Container of dried basil – $3.19 (1)
  • 1 Bunch fresh parsley – $1.50 (2)
  • 1 Bunch of fresh thyme – $1.50 (2)
  • 16 oz or less of almonds – $5.00 (2)
  • 6 Large ripe tomatoes – $2.99 (1)
  • 2 White onions – $1.78 (2)
  • 2 Yellow onions – $1.78 (2)
  • 1 Jar of pitted kalamata olives – $2.29 (1)
  • 16 oz of Uncooked brown or green lentils – $2.99 (1)
  • 32 oz Container of vegetable broth – $1.99 (2)
  • 1 10 oz Bag of frozen mixed veggies – $1.69 (1)
  • 3 lb Bag of yukon gold potatoes – $3.99 (1)
  • 1 Tub vegan butter – $2.00 (2)
  • 3 Medium acorn squash – $6.50 (1)
  • 1 Small bag of dried cranberries – $2.99 (1)
  • 1 Package of wild rice, any size – $3.45 (1)
  • 2 Medium shallots – $1.00 (1)
  • 1 Bunch of celery – $2.00 (1)

$75.00 – $85.00  *Prices may fluctuate depending on tax, store, sale and season. I paid $79.75 this week.

If you followed us last week you already have the following; however, if this is your first week you will need to make these additional purchases (appx $20.13) or substitute with ingredients you have in your cupboard.

  • Salt and Pepper shakers – $3.49 (5)
  • Olive oil-  $3.99 (3)
  • 1 1.5 oz Container of crushed red pepper flakes – $1.98 (1)
  • 1 Container of maple syrup – $5.99 (3)
  • 1 Container of dijon mustard – $2.79 (1)
  • 1 .75 oz Jar of oregano leaves – $1.89 (1)

Recipe No. 1

Baked Lemon Dijon Dill Tofu | Cook Time: 30 Minutes

Source: Trendeing.com by Jenna Garcia | Link to instructions

  • 15.5 ounces extra firm tofu
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon dried dill
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper

Note: Once again, Jenna Garcia, of Trendeing’s Foodie Blog, graces us with her incredible cooking expertise. I hope know you will enjoy this dish, and don’t forget to check out her other recipes as well!

Recipe No. 2

Sun-Dried Tomato, Mushroom and Spinach Tofu Quiche | Cook Time: 30 Minutes

Source: http://ohsheglows.com | Link to instructions

For the crust:

  • 1 tablespoon ground flax + 3 tablespoons water, mixed together
  • 1 cup whole almonds, ground into flour
  • 1 cup gluten-free rolled oats or buckwheat groats, ground into flour
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley*
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil or olive oil
  • 1-2.5 tbsp water, as needed

For the quiche:

  • 1 block firm tofu
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil or olive oil
  • 1 leek or yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 3 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 cups sliced cremini mushrooms
  • 1/2 cup fresh chives, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 1 cup baby spinach
  • 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 3/4-1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
  • Black pepper, to taste
  • Red pepper flakes, to taste

Note: For this recipe I used fresh parsley instead of the dried parsley because there were other recipes that also called for fresh, and I like to use whole ingredients whenever I can! But feel free to use either one. Also consider that the fresh herb will have a stronger flavor when making your choice.

Recipe No. 3

Vegan Stuffed Tomatoes | Cook Time: 45 Minutes

Source: Turniptheoven.com by The Cheating Vegan | Link to Instructions

  • 6 Large ripe tomatoes
  • 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Small onion chopped
  • 3 Cloves of garlic minced
  • ½ Cup pitted kalamata olives chopped
  • ⅓ Cup basmati rice*
  • ¼ Cup minced fresh parsley
  • White wine, Vegetable broth or water
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Note: Instead of using basmati rice, I used wild rice to add complexity of flavor to the meal. I would suggest cooking the wild rice ahead of time to save time.

Recipe No. 4

1-Hour Vegan Shepherd’s Pie | Cook Time: 1 Hour

Source: Minimalist Baker | Link to instructions


  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups uncooked brown or green lentils, rinsed and drained
  • 4 cups vegetable stock
  • 2 tsp fresh thyme or 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 10 oz bag frozen mixed veggies: peas, carrots, green beans, and corn

Mashed Potatoes:

  • 3 pounds yukon gold potatoes, thoroughly washed
  • 3-4 Tbsp vegan butter
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Note: Trader Joe’s has precooked lentils in their refrigerated/pre-made salad area. I used these to save time.

Recipe No. 5

Roasted Acorn Squash with Wild Rice Stuffing | Cook Time: 1 Hour and 20 Minutes

Source: Chowhound | Link to instructions

  • 3 medium acorn squash, halved lengthwise and seeds removed
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon packed dark brown sugar*
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 2 medium shallots, finely chopped
  • 4 celery stalks, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme leaves
  • 2 cups cooked wild rice mix
  • 2/3 cup pecans, toasted and finely chopped*
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more as needed
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more as needed

Note: To save on the ingredients list and provide a sugar modification I used the maple syrup from last week instead of adding the brown sugar. I also substituted the pecans for almonds to save money as well, but feel free to buy pecans in addition to the almonds used in recipe two if the budget permits.


Cheating Vegan. (2015, June 9). Vegan Stuffed Tomatoes. Retrieved September 14, 2017, from

turniptheoven.com website: http://turniptheoven.com/vegan-stuffed-tomatoes/

Garcia, J. (N.D.). Baked Lemon Dijon Dill Tofu. Retrieved September 14, 2017, from

Trendeing.com website: https://www.trendeing.com/foodie-blog/baked-lemon-dijon-dill-tofu

Mollenkamp, A. (n.d.). Roasted Acorn Squash with Wild Rice Stuffing. Retrieved September 14,

2017, from www.chowhound.com website: https://www.chowhound.com/recipes/roasted-acorn-squash-with-wild-rice-stuffing-13566

ohsheglows.com. (N.D.). Sun-Dried Tomato, Mushroom and Spinach Tofu Quiche. Retrieved

September 14, 2017, from http://ohsheglows.com website:


Shultz, D. (N.D.). 1-Hour Vegan Shepherd’s Pie. Retrieved September 14, 2017, from

minimalistbaker.com website: https://minimalistbaker.com/1-hour-vegan-shepherds-pie/



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