In order to ween myself (and my family) from the processed foods, I had to come up with tasty alternatives. I started with the ever popular condensed cream of mushroom soup. After a quick internet search, I came up with this. I altered it a bit to suite our tastes...added more mushrooms, used organic broth (which is IMPORTANT to keep the MSG out), and seasoned it with sea salt. It works great in tuna noodle casserole (which I now have a different from-scratch recipe that I use and I will share another day) and green bean casserole! The recipe can also be used to create other "cream of" soup variations. Another thing I quickly found a substitute for was taco seasoning. My favorite website, allrecipes.com, is where I found my go-to taco seasoning recipe. Trust me, this is WAY better than any seasoning packet. Plus, you can mix up a ton, and have it on-hand whenever. How convenient is that?
(note: You will need to add 1/2 to 3/4 cup of water to the seasoning mix. Just like the packets.)
It was actually quite simple to find chemical free substitutions for the foods we liked. Here are a few of my favorite recipes:
Oatmeal Whoopie Pies (aka: oatmeal cream pies) Please note that I switch the shortening for real butter.
Restaurant Style Salsa
28oz. can of organic (or natural) whole tomatoes
2-10 oz can of all natural tomatoes with green chilies (I use the Meijer Naturals brand...Ro-Tel HAS additives, so do not use)
1 jalapeno pepper, seeds and all, cut into chunks
3/4 cup white onion, roughly chopped
2-3 cloves of garlic, peeled and halved
1/2 cup ORGANIC cilantro
The juice of 1/2 a lime
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp cumin
a pinch of sugar
Toss ingredients into a food processor or blender, pulse 15-20 times.
Pour into a bowl and store in the fridge for at least 4 hours (it gets better with time!) before serving.