Friday, September 19, 2014
Easy Bean and Cheese Burritos and Vacation Money Saving Tips
Do you ever need a super-simple-easy-peasy recipe to make for dinner? This recipe is the one for you! I can not think of a time when we have gone on vacation and I haven't brought this meal to make for our family (or our kids). One of the ways we save a lot of money on vacations is by bringing ingredients from home that can quickly be made into a meal for our family. I usually do a little 'shopping trip' through our food storage before we leave and grab several items I need to put together some simple meals to save us from going out to eat every night. These Bean and Cheese Burritos are one of the most simple recipes to make and are extremely kid friendly.
Being on vacation with a family of 7 can quickly break the bank if you are eating out every meal. We have a rule of only going out to eat once each day...and try several days to not go out to eat at all. Even when we are going to an amusement park we always pack in a lunch to save from having to eat in the park (which always costs an arm and a leg!). Breakfast is easy to do at a hotel or a condo so we always do simple meals like yogurt and homemade granola, cereal, oatmeal, fruit, sweet breads, etc. As for dinner, there are several times we choose to just eat at the condo (or hotel). To take our family out to eat it will cost anywhere from $40-$80 depending where we go. Contrast that with the cost of these Bean and Cheese Burritos. This recipe feeds a family of 7-8 and costs (assuming you bought everything on sale) ONLY $7! That's only a dollar per person. Serve these burritos with a simple salad or some fresh fruit and that's a meal for 7 for less than $10! That's a savings of over $50-$70 every time we choose to eat in. This one tip has saved us hundreds of dollars every vacation we go on. By planning a little before your trip you can save $100's while at your destination.
Visit this post 12 Simple Ways to Save Big Money on Road Trips and Cut Your Vacation Food Budget in Half to give you some more simple tips to save you money while on vacation!
*One more tip..if you are like us, you don't have a lot of room to bring a large cooler for all of the food you want to pack. Every trip we go on a vacation I only have room for a small 18 inch cooler. Over the years I have learned to pack more bang for my buck. In my cooler I only put items that will save me the most money if I have to buy them at a store while away from home. These are items like butter, cheese, meat (chicken, beef, hot dogs, etc.), dairy items (like sour cream, cream cheese, etc.) and lunchmeat. Items like a gallon of milk take up too much space and we just buy that when we get to the store. I also pack a produce bag in one of those large cooler bags with all of the fresh produce I usually already have in my fridge before we leave. By having several produce items and all of the expensive items in my cooler..as well as items from our food storage, our shopping trip at our vacation location usually only requires us to get milk, bread and eggs. So, when packing your cooler, pack the right items to help you save BIG while away :)
Easy Bean and Cheese Burritos
2 can refried beans
2 cans black beans, drained
2 cans (4 oz.) diced green chilies (or 1 cup salsa verde)
2 tsp. taco seasoning
Juice of 1 lime
1-2 cups shredded cheese (I used half colby jack and half pepperjack)
15-20 ct. flour tortillas
Butter, for brushing on burritos
In a bowl, combine the refried beans, drained black beans, diced green chilies, taco seasoning and lime juice. Stir until combined and then add in the shredded cheese. Fold in the cheese. Place a 1/4-1/3 cup of the bean mixture into a tortilla and then roll up as tightly as you can. Place the burrito on a greased cookie sheet. Continue until all of the tortillas are filled with the bean mixture. If you have leftover bean mixture you can freeze this for a later meal. If you would like to make these burritos as a freezer meal, you can place them all on a cookie sheet and then put the pan in the freezer until the burritos are frozen. Once they are frozen you can remove the burritos from the pan and place in a Ziploc bag so you can remove one at a time and cook for serving. If you are cooking these burritos right away, then you can brush the tops of each burrito with a little melted butter and bake at 400 for 15-20 minutes, or until they are lightly golden brown and ready to serve. You can serve these burritos with salsa or with our easy cilantro dipping sauce (below).
Easy Cilantro Dipping Sauce
1 cup ranch dressing or sour cream
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped (or you can even use dried cilantro)
1 (4 oz.) can diced green chilies or salsa verde
Mix together and serve with burritos.