8-Ingredient Meal for Busy Holiday Evenings

What, a home cooked meal that’s easy and cheap and can save your sanity during the crazy holiday season?  That’s right, your trusty financial planner to the rescue.  Vegans need not read further.


Main dish:

(courtesy of Catherine Tidd at Social Seed Marketing):


  1. Take 1 can each of Campbell’s French Onion Soup and Cream of Celery Soup. Dump them into your crock pot and whisk them around a bit to combine.  Yes, it will look like vomit at first.  Don’t panic.
  2. Cut a 2-3 pound chuck roast into 1-2 inch cubes. Put those in the soup-vomit slurry in the crock pot.
  3. Set your crock pot on low for 6 hours and run your errands.
  4. Serve beef and gravy over wide egg noodles, or if you are Southern, grits.


Okay, that was your 4-ingredient main dish.  But family should not live on meat and gravy alone.  Here comes your veggie.



  1. Combine one cup of chopped pecans and 1/3 cup white sugar and heat over medium heat in a heavy saucepan. As the sugar starts to melt, stir frequently.  This can burn easily.  As the sugar and pecans get dark, remove from heat.  Pour out on a piece of wax paper and quickly put water in the hot pan to keep the sugar from permanently fusing to your cookware.  This step can be done a week in advance and nuts stored in Tupperware.
  2. 1 Small can of Mandarin Oranges
  3. 2 Cups pre-washed spinach.
  4. Toss the greens and oranges and nuts together and drizzle with a little Italian or Balsamic Vinaigrette salad dressing.


See, so much better than Panda Express at the mall!



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