BLT Wraps

BLT Wraps
by Michelle Jones, Founder of @BetterBudgeting

Category: Recipes, Frugal
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Yield: 4-6 servings

Had a craving this week for a BLT sandwich (Bacon, Lettuce & Tomato). Decided to try it in a wrap. I used regular tortillas for the kids and whole wheat for me and hubby. Both were great. A quick and delicious meal for the whole family. Hope you'll try it!


6 large flour tortillas (or whole wheat, or any other you like)
About half a head of lettuce, washed and separated into large pieces (no need to chop or tear)
2 large tomatoes, sliced
12 pieces of bacon (we had some leftover from a breakfast earlier in the week, probably the cause of my craving!)


Cook bacon, drain on paper towel and set aside. Place 1 tortilla on plate (heated or not, either way is fine) then spread mayo on top, about 1 T., more or less as desired. Layer with large leaf of lettuce, a few tomato slices, then two pieces of bacon. You can also add other ingredients, such as cheese or different veggies, although then it wouldn't be a traditional BLT. ;o)

Fold in sides of tortilla, or roll, to make a wrap. Then eat and enjoy!

Perfect Fried Pickles!

Perfect Fried Pickles
by Michelle Jones, Founder of @BetterBudgeting

Category: Recipes, Frugal, Appetizer

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Yield: 6-8 servings

Oh my goodness, we love fried pickles! If you haven't had them yet, you're missing a real treat. Especially if you like pickles. Fried pickles are popular here in the South. The first time we had them was at a barbecue restaurant in 2006; when we moved back home to Atlanta. Ever since then, we've ordered them just about anytime we see them on a menu; splitting one order for our family of 6 means everyone gets just a few. With hubby still out of work we rarely eat out anymore. No more fried pickles. That is... until our college daughter was home for the weekend and said "Mom, let's make fried pickles!" She knows I've been wanting to make them for years so of course I said "Yes, lets do it!"

Having had many different types of fried pickles over the last 6 years, we knew there was one type we did NOT want... battered with cornmeal. We also knew they are better fried crispy brown, not too light and not too dark. They should be soft on the inside, crunchy on the outside, and absolutely delicious!

I'm happy to report, our homemade fried pickles came out just perfect!

Here's our (now favorite!) recipe, I hope you'll try it. Makes enough fried pickles for 6-8 people, more or less. ;o)


1 large jar of sliced dill pickles, or as much as you want to make (we used just over 1/2 quart)
Vegetable oil
2 c. all-purpose flour
2 large eggs
1 c. low-fat buttermilk
About half a box of saltine crackers, crushed finely
3/4 tsp. dill weed, dried or fresh
3/4 tsp. cayenne pepper


Heat oil to 350 degrees. You can use a deep fryer, iron skillet or stockpot on the stove.

Mix together flour, salt and pepper, in a large zip bag. In a medium size bowl or baking dish, mix together eggs and buttermilk. In a third container, preferably a large baking dish, mix together crushed crackers, dill weed and cayenne pepper. Dip pickles first in flour mixture, then egg mixture, then cracker crumbs. Let them sit on plate for just a bit before placing one at a time into hot oil; small batches of about 10-12 work best. Carefully turn pickles once if necessary to brown evenly on both sides. Remove pickles from oil and drain on paper towels. THEN, sprinkle with a little salt and additional cayenne pepper. OH MY GOODNESS, SO GOOD!!!

These are the dill pickle slices (chips) we used. Delicious!

Dill pickle chips are the best type of pickles to use. I would think any brand should be fine, as long as they are fresh. You can also use whole dill pickles and slice them yourself, or pickle spears. Just remember, DILL, not sweet, not bread and butter.

There are several methods to crushing the saltine crackers. Crush them in a closed zip bag with a rolling pin, in a dish with a potato masher, or pulse them in a food processor.

Eggs and buttermilk, delightful.

Our batter lineup! :o)

1st flour, 2nd eggs, 3rd cracker crumbs. You could also use regular bread crumbs, or panko... just not cornmeal!

350 degree oil, til crispy brown on both sides.

Here's what our fried pickles looked like after a sprinkling of additional salt and cayenne pepper. This, I believe, was the ultimate perfect touch!!!



Easy Crockpot Baked Potatoes

Easy Crock Pot Baked Potatoes (with or without foil)
by Michelle Jones, Founder @BetterBudgeting

Potatoes cooked in crock pot, with a pat of butter and dried chives.

Category: Recipes, Frugal, Side Dish
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Yield: 4-6 servings

Potatoes often get a bad rap with dieters but they are actually very nutritional and a staple food for most frugal families. Potatoes, a root vegetable, are rich in vitamins, essential minerals, and dietary fiber. They contain vitamin C, potassium, thiamin (vitamin B1), riboflavin (vitamin B12), folate (vitamin B9), magnesium, phosphorous, iron and zinc. Red, Purple, and Russett varieties also contain vitamin A and antioxidant flavonoids. In addition, potatoes are fat free, cholesterol free, and low calorie.

OVEN: When you're cooking other items in the oven it's easy to wrap potatoes in a bit of foil and place around the rack edges. (I love to bake them at 475 for about an hour, without foil, just butter and salt.)

MICROWAVE: You can also microwave potatoes for about 4 minutes for a tender and super fast spud.

CROCK POT: However, if you'd like to cook them slow in the crock pot for dinner tonight while you go about your busy day, try this recipe.

It's so simple it will make you smile! :o)

How to cook potatoes in the crock pot.


4-6 potatoes (Russett or Idaho)
Butter or olive oil (omit if desired)
Sea salt (if no butter or oil is used, leave washed potatoes slightly damp so the salt will stick)
Pepper (if desired)


Wash potatoes and pat dry. Prick the top side of each potato with a fork about 3 times. (Not sure why 3 times, I've just done it this way for 30 years. HA) Rub potato skins with a little bit of butter or olive oil, or whatever oil you prefer, then a pinch of sea salt and pepper, if desired. Though it is not necessary to wrap the potatoes in foil, you can if you really want to. It's okay. (My family likes them either way!)

Place potatoes in crock pot and cook on high for 4 hours, or low for 8 hours.



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