8 Tips for Eating Real Food-Ditching the Processed

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Who doesn’t have the goal of eating healthier? I don’t think I’ve ever heard anyone say, I want to eat more junk. But eating healthier is so subjective. Everyone’s version of healthier is going to be different based on their normal diet. My healthy might be your bad, or vice versa.

Despite the specifics of each person’s diet, some gluten free, dairy free, nut free, enter whatever your item is _______________ free, I believe eating the most unprocessed cooked at home version of whole foods is going to be the healthiest. And while I don’t have it all figured out, over the past three years, we’ve made a huge revolution in the foods we eat and how we prepare them at our home.8 tips for eating and cooking real food, from scratch, in a busy house at www.MelissaKNorris.com

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Red Pepper Garlic Jelly Recipe

There’s nothing like a bit of sweet heat and this homemade red pepper garlic jelly recipe delivers both. May through November is jam and jelly making season at our house. I can’t remember the last time I’ve purchased jam or jelly in the store, it’s been years for sure.

Around the holidays there is nothing better than pulling out jars of homemade goodness to share with guests. Plus, the work is already done so it makes for fast serving during a normally busy time of year.How to Make Red Pepper Garlic Jelly www.melissaknorris.com Pioneering Today

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Podcast Episode #14 Holiday Processed Replacements Part 3

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Holiday Processed Food Replacements Non-GMO and frugal www.MelissaKNorris.com Pioneering Today Podcast

The holidays are filled with baking and many recipes use processed ingredients that contain chemicals or GMO ingredients. You don’t have to sacrifice your health, taste, or budget by purchasing these ingredients. Make them at home yourself. In this episode we’ll discuss:

  • Why you should make certain processed foods at home
  • How to make your candy recipes GMO free
  • Tips to keep holiday baking stress at bay
  • Corn syrup replacement
  • Regular and Dairy Free Sweetened Condensed Milk
  • Homemade Wheat Thins
  • Hot Cocoa Mix
  • How to Make Your Own Extracts

Giving away some of your items as gifts? I love these chalk board labels from our affiliate partner Amazon and this liquid chalk pen.

Resources: Processed Replacements Part #2, Podcast Processed Replacements Part #1, Corn Syrup Replacement, Dairy Free Sweetened Condensed Milk, Honey and Sugar Sweetened Condensed Milk, Homemade Wheat Thins, Homemade Hot Cocoa Mix, Non-alcoholic mint extract,

 Disclosure: Some of the above links are affiliate links. This means we may receive a small portion if you purchase using one of the above links. It costs you no more and helps us keep the cost of the podcast and website free. Think of it as a small thank you gift. We greatly appreciate it.

Podcast #13 Processed Replacements Part 2

We post new episodes every Friday. If you subscribe you’ll get every episode for free. Subscribe via Itunes

On our journey to a healthier to an unprocessed simpler diet it can be hard to know where to start when replacing the processed pre-made ingredients in our kitchens. In today’s episode we’ll discuss:


  • How to make your transition to an unprocessed diet easier
  • What a whole foods diet means
  • #1 tip for eating healthier foods in your home
  • Chocolate Sauce/Syrup Recipe
  • Homemade Pancake Mix
  • Homemade Bisquick Mix
  • Homemade Brownie Mix
  • Homemade Eggnog Recipes and Variations
  • Homemade Crunchy Granola Bars

Resources: Podcast #12 Processed Replacements Part 1 Pioneering Today-A Homemade ChristmasHeather the Homesteading Hippy’s 30 Days from Scratch Series, Cultured Palate Homemade Bisquick Recipes, Common Sense Home Brownie Mix and Eggnog Recipes and Variations, Homemade Crunchy Granola Bars.

How to Make Healthy Homemade Granola Bars

On our way to a completely real traditional food diet, I’ve been swapping out processed foods with homemade versions. We first started with bread and I’m thrilled to share this recipe for homemade granola bars with you.

These are a crunchy granola bar, perfect for snacks, breakfast, back packs, or anywhere you need a quick bite. These make a large pan and are so much more frugal than going to the grocery store. Because I don’t know about you, but I always manage to buy more than what I ran in for.

I got this recipe from my mother and made a few small tweaks to make it healthier. It’s quick to make and oh so yummy. Pioneering Today Healthy Homemade Chunky Granola Bars www.melissaknorris.com

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Processed Replacements-Make Your Own Cream Soup Substitution

I’ve been converting processed foods with healthy traditional replacements in my kitchen for the past few years. I firmly believe in cooking and making things ourselves, instead of being spoon fed unhealthy chemical laden products by companies that only care about turning a profit.

It can be daunting and my best advice is to start with one item at a time. Begin with the items that you ingest the most of on a daily basis. For me, that was bread. It’s been over a year since I’ve purchased bread from the store using the less than 5 minutes a day method and only 5 traditional ingredients

Replacing Cream of Chicken Soup In Your Pantry-Cooking from Scratch

Today I want to show you how to make cream of soup substitutions in your favorite casseroles and recipes. We’ll be making a basic sauce. For the cream of chicken soups, I make a basic white sauce with a twist.

First start with a cast iron skillet, or a large skillet of your choice, but beings we’re being healthy, no Teflon coated pans.1 step of basic white sauce-melt the butter

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Pioneering Today-How to Make Your Own Sweet and Smoky Barbecue Sauce

We try to replace as many processed products with homemade ones as we can. When we’d raised, butchered, and roasted our own pig, I couldn’t very well serve it with store bought barbecue sauce. (Okay, I could have, but I didn’t want to)

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