Greek Sweet Potato Hash – $15 Meal from Trader Joe’s

$15 Trader Joe's Meal - Sweet Potato Hash -- The Nourishing Gourmet

By Natalia Gill of An Appetite For Joy

What could be better than diced sweet potatoes fried up with garlic and green onions, then topped with wild peppery arugula, salty feta and a sprinkle of sumac? Not much in this world if you ask me.

This Greek sweet potato hash is also versatile – delicious on its own or stuffed into a pita pocket or lettuce wrap!

One thing I love about the direction Kimberly takes with this blog is learning to save money while eating right. She came up with the idea of buying meal ingredients at Trader Joe’s with $15 in pocket and I thought it was a fun challenge!

I didn’t include cooking fat and spices in the cost. To more than offset this, know that there will be plenty of leftover sweet potatoes, arugula and sheep feta. My son loves packing the feta with olives in his lunch. And the extra sweet potatoes come in handy for our favorite dessert – Sweet Potato Pie with Lemon Zest.

3 FAVORITE TJ’S FINDS

When creating the recipe, I wanted to highlight a few of my favorite items at Trader Joe’s:

Sweet potatoes – I find TJ’s to have good prices on basic organic sweet potatoes.

Wild arugula – This was a new one for me. I like that there are a couple of wild-grown foods in the store as a cost-saving option compared to organic (wild blueberries and now wild arugula). This bagged arugula was amazingly fresh and the best arugula I have ever purchased from a grocery store. It was almost as tasty as the one I buy from a local farmer.

Sheep feta – I love this stuff. It comes in a sizable block that is pre-cut into manageable pieces. This cheese is much creamer than cow-milk feta and easier on digestion, like goat’s milk. It lasts all week for us!

COST BREAKDOWN

3 lb bag of sweet potatoes – $4.49
wild arugula – $2
green onions – $1.29
sheep feta – $6.49
lemon – 50 cents

TOTAL – $14.77

This meal comes together in a flash, especially if you can grab a few minutes earlier in the day to prepare the sweet potatoes (I like breaking up cooking tasks). I just cut them into french fry shape (a good knife makes this easy!) and soak in ice water in the fridge til I’m ready to cook.

$15 Trader Joe's Meal - Sweet Potato Hash -- The Nourishing Gourmet

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Greek Sweet Potato Hash - $15 Meal from Trader Joe's
 
Author:
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: Greek-inspired
Serves: 4-6
 
This Greek-inspired sweet potato hash makes a great light meal for spring or summer. Enjoy it on its own or stuffed into a homemade pita, tortilla or lettuce wrap. A cup of bone broth on the side completes the meal.
Ingredients
  • 2 pounds sweet potatoes (about 4 large), peeled and diced small
  • 4 scallions, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1-2 tablespoons dried oregano, to taste
  • unrefined salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons cooking fat (ghee, bacon fat, coconut oil, etc.)
  • OPTIONAL TOPPINGS:
  • chunks of sheep feta
  • arugula
  • sumac
Instructions
  1. This is a one-pot meal if you halve the recipe. But with the quantity of sweet potatoes, it's necessary to make it in two skillets.
  2. Heat two skillets over medium heat and add 1 tablespoon cooking fat to each. When hot, add diced sweet potatoes and cook until they start to soften, about 5-10 minutes. Add a little salt.
  3. Add the scallions and cook another 5 minutes, or until they start to get a little crispy. (Add extra fat if needed.)
  4. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Add the garlic and oregano and cook another 5 minutes being careful not to burn the garlic.
  5. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  6. Serve with a lemon wedge, a pile of arugula on top and some feta if desired. I also like to sprinkle on a little sumac.

Creamy Grain-Free Porridge

This creamy, flavorful porridge is grain and dairy-free, and is a lovely way to start the day. Can you guess what the secret ingredient is?! It also makes a great snack in the afternoon or evening. It’s perfect for those on a Paleo or AIP diet, or just those who enjoy a healthy alternative to grain based porridges. --- The Nourishing Gourmet

This creamy grain-free hot “cereal” is gently spiced with cinnamon and ginger for a delicious and good-for-you breakfast! I discovered this method of making a hot porridge since I started the AIP diet. It only takes a minute to put the ingredients together, and then it gently simmers while I get breakfast for the rest of my family together. The secret ingredient? Cauliflower! It’s crazy how many great things you can do with this vegetable.

I love that I can have a creamy hot cereal again! It’s perfect for those on a grain-free diet, paleo diet, or the AIP diet.

I will mention that my two oldest, who eat grains (one gluten-free, one not) weren’t too sure about this recipe, which is why I make it just for myself. This creamy quinoa breakfast cereal is more to their liking. So if you are eating cream-of-wheat one morning, and then make this the next, don’t expect it to taste similar! But I did find that my one-year-old is a fan, like me. 🙂

Notes on Ingredients:

  • If you can have dairy, this would be scrumptious with cream or half and half.
  • I used this lovely Coconut Cream (gum-free). (Amazon links affiliate)
  • If you weren’t on the AIP diet, you could also try it with homemade almond milk.
  • Find out how to make cauliflower “rice” for this recipe here, but I cheated and used a package from Trader Joe’s. I used their unfrozen though I imagine their frozen would work as well.
  • Cauliflower when at the peak of the season and newly picked can be very very sweet. This recipe would be even better when using such yummy cauliflower.
  • I added this gelatin for added protein and benefits. I also like to eat this with bacon or sausage on the side.

This creamy, flavorful porridge is grain and dairy-free, and is a lovely way to start the day. Can you guess what the secret ingredient is?! It also makes a great snack in the afternoon or evening. It’s perfect for those on a Paleo or AIP diet, or just those who enjoy a healthy alternative to grain based porridges. --- The Nourishing Gourmet

Creamy Grain-free Porridge

Notes: I like using the high amount of cinnamon and ginger as it disguises the cauliflower flavor even more. However, the higher amount is on the stronger side so I recommend you start with the smaller amount and only adding more if desired. Though I haven’t tried this yet, I think that if you cooked this, and then let it cool and refrigerated it for 24 hours, that the flavors would be even better. You can also consider adding a bit of vanilla extract, or other spices too! 

Ingredients:

1 cup of cauliflower “rice”, uncooked
½ cup of coconut milk or cream (gum-free, if AIP)
½ cup of water
Dash of Salt
¼-1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
¼-1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
½ tablespoon pure maple syrup (or desired amount for sweetness)

Instructions:

1. In a small pot, combine all of the ingredients and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Turn down heat to keep to a gentle simmer, and simmer until cauliflower is tender (about seven minutes).

2, Usually, I keep it just like it is, but, if you want it creamier in texture OR if the cauliflower chunks were on the larger size, I recommend briefly pulsing it in a blender or food processor (carefully! The mixture will be hot).

3. Top with berries, diced fruit, toasted coconut flakes, or anything else you’d like!

Serves 1

Creamy Grain-Free Porridge
 
Serves: 1
Cook time:
Total time:
 
Ingredients
  • 1 cup of cauliflower “rice”, uncooked
  • ½ cup of coconut milk or cream (gum-free, if AIP)
  • ½ cup of water
  • Dash of Salt
  • ¼-1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼-1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • ½ tablespoon pure maple syrup (or desired amount for sweetness)
Instructions
  1. In a small pot, combine all of the ingredients and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Turn down heat to keep to a gentle simmer, and simmer until cauliflower is tender - generally about seven minutes.
  2. Usually, I keep it just like it is, but, if you want it creamier in texture OR if the cauliflower chunks were on the larger size, I recommend briefly pulsing it in a blender or food processor (carefully! The mixture will be hot).
  3. Top with berries, diced fruit, toasted coconut flakes, or anything else you’d like!

 

White Hot Chocolate (Inspired by The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe)

This frothy and creamy white hot chocolate is dairy-free and made with healthy ingredients! It's inspired by The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe, but it's lovely to enjoy with any book! -- The Nourishing Gourmet

By Katie Mae Stanley of Nourishing Simplicity

Rich and creamy, this dairy-free white hot chocolate transports you to the land of Narnia.

As winter melts into spring I can’t help but to think of the magical land of Narnia as it was right before Aslan returned, in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. It was a cold and bleak place, with no hope for the future, a world of never ending winter.

Edmund followed his sister Lucy through the wardrobe, unable to find her, he found himself alone and cold in the snowy woods.

To his surprise a “Queen” better known as the White Witch pulled up beside him in her sleigh. Once she realized he was a “son of Adam” she changed from harsh creature to a flattering and almost nurturing type. Despite Edmund’s trepidations he was beguiled but the promise of warmth, a hot drink, Turkish delight, and ultimately a kingdom.

Edmund felt much better as he began to sip the hot drink. It was something he has never tasted before, very sweet and foamy and creamy, and it warmed him right down to his toes

~C.S. Lewis, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe 

White Hot Chocolate Quote

I always wished that I could be Edmond just for a few minutes so I could savor the delicious, hot drink and Turkish Delight too!  It left me wondering what that very sweet and foamy and creamy could possibly be.

It couldn’t be classic hot cocoa since that was already popular in England. It occurred to me that it very well could be a white hot chocolate, which is oh so creamy, and not commonly drank at that time.

This is not your regular white hot chocolate made with the bars you see in the store, instead, it is made with cocoa butter. Cocoa butter gives the drink a smooth and creamy texture with just a hint of chocolate essence.

Curl up with your loved ones and this drink, to enjoy the story once again or for the very first time before winter melts into spring!

OTHER RECIPES INSPIRED BY BOOKS

Ingredients and Equipement: 

(Affiliate links)

White Hot Chocolate

Ingredients: 

  • 3 cups almond milk (or other milk/milk substitute)
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup or raw honey
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa butter, grated
  • 1 vanilla bean, caviar scraped out
  • 1/8 tsp unrefined salt

Directions:

1. Split the vanilla bean in half and scrape the caviar (insides) out with a sharp knife.

2. In a small sauce pot, combine the milk, maple syrup (honey), cocoa butter, vanilla, and salt. Warm over medium heat until the milk is warm and the cocoa butter is melted.

3. Pour into two mugs and froth with a milk frother if desired.

White Hot Chocolate (Inspired by The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe)
 
 
Ingredients
  • 3 cups almond milk (or other milk/milk substitute)
  • ¼ cup maple syrup or raw honey
  • 2 TBS cocoa butter
  • 1 vanilla bean, caviar scraped out
  • ⅛ tsp unrefined salt
Instructions
  1. Split the vanilla bean in half and scrape the caviar (insides) out with a sharp knife.
  2. In a small sauce pot, combine the milk, maple syrup (honey), cocoa butter, vanilla, and salt. Warm over medium heat until the milk is warm and the cocoa butter is melted.
  3. Pour into two mugs and froth with a milk frother if desired.

 

White Hot Chocolate Picture

Golden Milk: Anti-Inflammatory Turmeric Milk

This delicious traditional drink is a wonderful way to enjoy anti-inflammatory (and delicious spices).  It's gently sweetened with honey (you can use manuka honey for added benefits!) -This is a great beverage to enjoy right before bed. It's so creamy and comforting. - The Nourishing Gourmet

Comforting, rich, and deliciously spiced, this wonderful beverage has a lot of oomph from anti-inflammatory spices. I used to be wary of this beverage because I find that one of the main ingredients – turmeric – can easily overpower certain dishes. I figured that something as gentle as milk could especially be overwhelmed with it.

I was wrong.

This is delicious! This is a traditional Indian Ayurveda beverage that harnesses some of the most potent known spices. I recently started drinking golden or turmeric milk (traditionally named: Haldi Ka Goodh) for it’s anti-inflammatory and immune building properties, but I was pleased to find that I love its taste.

Being on the AIP diet right now limits certain foods and beverages, including coffee. But I’ve found a lot of enjoyment with what I’m left with, such as this recipe.

Some of the ingredients in this recipe are some of the most researched too. For example, check out this overview of some of the research conducted on ginger and this one (out of hundreds) on turmeric – including both of their potential anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties .

If you want to read some of the research done on these two spices so far, you can search the website NCBI. Very interesting information! Because of studies that I read on this site about manuka honey, I try to have it on hand (You can read these four studies on manuka honey to give you an idea of possible benefits: 1, 2, 3, 4). Because of the possible benefits, I have been using manuka honey in this recipe, and it’s very delicious! But any favorite honey will work.

(Affiliate links used below.)

This delicious traditional drink is a wonderful way to enjoy anti-inflammatory (and delicious spices).  It's gently sweetened with honey (you can use manuka honey for added benefits!) -This is a great beverage to enjoy right before bed. It's so creamy and comforting. - The Nourishing Gourmet

This is the brand of manuka honey I happen to have on my shelf right now.

What I love about this recipe is that it combines traditional wisdom with well-researched ingredients. On that same note, pepper and turmeric are traditionally combined in Indian recipes, and it turns out that science has finally confirmed that not only is this a delicious flavor combination, but the pepper is what allows the good stuff from turmeric to be bioavailable to us! (Source)

Note to my AIP friends, if you are still on the strict form of the AIP diet, you can’t have pepper yet. However, it’s often one of the first things people add back in, so you may be able to add it in quickly. Until then, this still tastes delicious without it. Follow the link below to find out what coconut cream I use that is AIP-friendly.

Ingredients:

Other Dairy-Free beverages you may enjoy:

This delicious traditional drink is a wonderful way to enjoy anti-inflammatory (and delicious spices).  It's gently sweetened with honey (you can use manuka honey for added benefits!) -This is a great beverage to enjoy right before bed. It's so creamy and comforting. - The Nourishing Gourmet

Golden Milk – Hot Turmeric Milk

You will see that I have a list of other possible additions to this recipe. All of them are good. But it tastes great just with the basics too (which is what I use most of the time). I recommend that you start with the lowest amount of ginger and turmeric for your first cup.

Ingredients:

  •  ½ cupCoconut Cream and ½ cup of filtered water, or 1 cup of coconut milk (or milk of choice.)
  • ½-3/4 teaspoon Ginger
  • ½-3/4 teaspoon Turmeric
  • Dash of freshly ground pepper, optional for those on AIP
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons honey (I used, Manuka honey, see above), or to taste
  • Other possible additions: ¼ teaspoon cinnamon, ½ teaspoon vanilla extract, ½ teaspoon cardamom

Directions:

1. In a small pot, heat the coconut cream and water (or coconut milk), ginger, turmeric, and ground pepper until just simmering. Turn off the heat and allow the mixture to steep for ten to twenty minutes (not completely necessary, but will give the flavors time to meld).

2. Reheat to the desired temperature. I heat until it’s warm to the touch, but not hot so that it doesn’t cook my raw honey when I add it. Stir in honey to taste, and enjoy.

Serves 1

Golden Milk - Anti-Inflammatory Turmeric Milk
 
Serves: 1
 
Ingredients
  • ½ cup coconut cream and ½ cup of filtered water, or 1 cup of coconut milk (or milk of choice.)
  • ½-3/4 teaspoon ginger
  • ½-3/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • Dash of freshly ground pepper, optional for those on AIP
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons honey (I used manuka honey, see above), or to taste
  • Other possible additions: ¼ teaspoon cinnamon, ½ teaspoon vanilla extract, ½ teaspoon cardamom
Instructions
  1. In a small pot, heat the coconut cream and water (or coconut milk), ginger, turmeric, and ground pepper until just simmering. Turn off the heat and allow the mixture to steep for ten to twenty minutes (not completely necessary, but will give the flavors time to meld).
  2. Reheat to the desired temperature. I heat until it’s warm to the touch, but not hot so that it doesn’t cook my raw honey when I add it. Stir in honey to taste, and enjoy.