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Coupon Abbreviations
  • SC = Store Coupon
  • MC = Manufacturer Coupon
  • SS = Smart Source
  • RP = Red Plum
  • PG = Proctor and Gamble
Coupon Terms
  • WYB = When You Buy
  • B1G1 = Buy One Get One Free
  • .75/1 = 75 cents off one item
  • .75/3 = 75 cents off three items
  • EXP = Expiration Date

Going Nuts? I can help you understand coupon terms and abbreviations

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I planned to get this post to Jenny yesterday but with the kids out of school, well, nothing much got done.

I wanted to let you all know that all the recipes I recommend are ones that I have tried and have received the thumbs up from my family.  I will try to chose quick and easy recipes.  If it is one that might be difficult or take extra time, I’ll let you know.  I love to cook and try at least 2-3 new recipes a week so I hope to always give you a good variety.

The first thing I noticed in the Kroger flier was that split chicken breasts were on sale.  I love to buy breasts when they are on sale, cook them, chop them, and freeze them in one cup portions.  It is great when you run across a recipe calling for precooked chicken and you’ve got 8 cups in the freezer!!  I got this idea from Southern Living Magazine.

Step 1: How to cook them before freezing:

Basic Baked Chicken Breasts
I purchase close to 4 lb. of chicken breasts.  They are usually rather large so if you get smaller breasts you may need to reduce the cooking time.  I can tell when chicken is done by a touch test but a thermometer would be helpful for this.  You don’t want overcooked, dry chicken.

4 celery ribs with tops, cut into 4 inch pieces
2 carrots, sliced
2 medium onions, sliced
6 bone-in chicken breasts (about 4 pounds)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

Arrange celery, carrots, and onions in a lightly greased 15×12 inch roasting pan (somehow I make mine fit in a 9×12 pan).  Top with chicken; sprinkle with salt and pepper (or use seasoning salt).
Bake, covered, at 350 for 1 to 1 1/2 hours or until chicken is done.  Cool chicken slightly; remove and discard skin and bones.  Chop meat, and store in airtight containers in freezer for up to 3 months.

Chicken Pot Pie
This is my favorite recipe using the chopped cooked chicken.  I got this recipe from my aunt so I will have to type it out.  I don’t know where she got it.

2-3 cups of Chopped Cooked Chicken
1 bag frozen Mixed Vegetables
1 box Pillsbury Pie Crust
2 tbsp Sour Cream
1 can Cream of Chicken Soup
1/2 – 1 cup Chicken Broth
1/2 cup Chopped Celery
(we leave out the celery as my husband is a celery hater, you could add mushrooms or any other veggie not in the mixed veggie bag)
Unroll one pie crust into pie plate.  Mix all ingredients.  Pour into pie crust.  Top with second pie crust and bake at 350 for 45-60 minutes.

— and/or —

Crispy Skinned Chicken a l’orange
This comes from the new Next Food Network Star Melissa d’Arabian.  The glaze on this chicken is awesome.  If you ever get a chance to see this episode do it.  She shows you how to remove the chicken from the bone once is is cooked.  I would always serve split breasts right on the bone, and now that I know how to remove the bones I buy more bone in breasts.  They are usually cheaper and the chefs always say cooking something on the bone keeps it moist.  (There is also a great video here on deboning a chicken.)

To go along with that try her 5-minute individual potato gratins.  My kids had a blast helping me make these.

Sauerbraten
If you want to celebrate Oktoberfest at your house, try this out.  It is not a quick recipe, but it is not difficult.  The roast marinates for 2-3 days and then when you go to cook you basically put everything in the oven for 2 1/2 hours.

Jenny here: The Kroger ad was pretty slim pickin’s this week, so thanks Amy for using this as an opportunity to make use all better chefs!  In terms of meat prices bone in chicken breasts are usually $1 cheaper per lb than boneless so it is great to know how to use these!!

One other thought, this is the mother of twins part of me talking.  Ever want to know what you can do for a new mom?  Whole meals are wonderful, but if you took the time to brown hamburger meat, or cook and cube chicken to freeze…  any mom would love you forever!

    • Lyn

      The Crispy Skinned Chicken a l’ornage link is not working for me. Is there another place to look at the recipe?

      • Amy

        You can find it on the Food Network website.

    • Michelle in Martinez

      where did my comment go?

      • Michelle in Martinez

        nevermind…i see the link is fixed. thanks! :)

    • awesome yummy dinner ideas! I love all melissa d’arabian’s meals…we’ve tried several but not the chicken a l’orange, can’t wait to try it now!

    • holly

      Thanks for the recipes. I always stock up when Kroger has .99 cent bone in chicken.
      My kids favorite is simply Barbeque chicken and rice.
      I add 1/2 a bottle of (free) Kraft BBQ sauce and 4 bone in chicken breasts and cook in the crockpot for 6-7 hours on low. Remove from bone and shred. Serve over rice.
      It’s a little annoying to remove from the bones, but cheaper.

    • Shauna

      For a cheaper crust for the Chicken Pot Pie, we just do a layer of Pillsbury biscuits peeled in halfs on top of the filling. These biscuits go on sale a lot and often you can get them for free.

    • I used to do this thing called 30 day gourmet for years and always had great food ready to go in the freezer, and we always bought in bulk when things were on sale like the split chicken breasts. Another great way to cook those split breasts is overnight in your crockpot with just a tiny bit of water, like maybe 1 tbsp. They fall off the bone or you could do this while you’re at work and you can save all of the broth and freeze it for when your recipe calls for stock. I freeze the cooked chicken in freezer zip lock bags and flatten the air out so that they lay flat just like 30 day gourmet taught me. I do the same when ground round or ground chuck is on sale, I go ahead and cook it all and put in freezer zip lock bags and I’m ready when my recipe calls for cooked hamburger meat.

    • Thanks for the ideas – y’all are inspiring! Can anyone offer good tips for HOW to freeze meat? I don’t know if I fail in the freezing or the thawing, but one or the other turns my meat bad when I try it. Help!

      • holly

        Tina above has some great tips.
        I’m not an expert, but this is what I do.
        When you freeze meat (cooked or raw) you want to try and squeeze all the air out of the bag so it doesn’t get freezer burn. I try and use within 2 months for fresher taste.
        Thaw meat in the refrigerator overnight or if you are in a rush, in a bowl of cold water for an hour or LESS. Or in the microwave on 40%. Sometimes the microwave partially cooks some parts though.

        But if you are thawing already cooked meat, just heat it up in the microwave or on the stove. It shouldn’t be bad.

        I also cook our meat in some teriaki sauce in the crockpot, freeze and use in chicken fajitas. The possibilities are endless and make for some really fast meals!

        Whatever you do, don’t freeze meat, cook it and then freeze it again.

        Another tip is I remove the skin first if I’m freezing raw chicken. (if I don’t want the chicken on for what I’m cooking)

        • holly

          oops. I meant “if I don’t want the skin on what I’m cooking” for that last line.

        • Thanks sos much, Holly and Donna! I will cook my chicken before freezing, as you suggested. Hopefully that will help. And a longer thaw time might help, too…it’s always still frozen when I freeze raw and then try cooking.

          I froze my uncooked pork ribs by wrapping in press n seal and then putting in a freezer bag. I hope it works!

          Thanks for all your tips!

      • Donna

        Use two freezer bags, one containing the food and another one on top of that to prevent freezer burn. Can also use plastic grocery bags.

    • Gail

      Awesome!!!! I love getting menu ideas/recipes based off recent sale items!
      Keep ’em coming!

    • Tanya

      Amy, I made the chicken pot pie last night and it was wonderful! My husband kept asking me if I really made it or bought it! My kids even ate the vegetables! Thanks!

      • Amy

        I’m so happy!! I made it too after I suggested it and we devoured it.