Grocery Store Savings – 4/10/17 Publix


Original Price: $2.59 for 1 box of popcorn         I paid: NOTHING

Smart Balance Microwave Popcorn: 1 box that is on sale for $1 each + one $1 of 1 newspaper coupon

  • That’s $0 per box!
  • Whenever I’m watching tv I seem to want to munch on something. Popcorn is a whole grain and can be a healthy snack as long as you don’t load it up with oil, butter, or salt. I had 2 coupons so I grabbed 1 of each flavor and will see how they are. You can always add some of you own herbs and spices that don’t have salt to give it flavor while keeping it healthy.


Original Price: $7.98 for 2 packages of fresh mozzarella       I paid: $1.99 for 2 packages

Galbani Fresh Mozzarella: $3.99 BOGO + two $1 off 1 printable coupon

  • That’s only $1 per package and each package has 8 servings it only $0.12 for each serving of mozzarella!
  • This will go great with some basil and tomatoes to make a caprese salad
  • I can also add this to some vegetables for a side dish
  • Serves as a great snack


Original Price: $3.98 for 2 bags of green beans                          I paid: $1.99 for 2 bags

Publix Green Beans: $1.99 BOGO

  • That’s only $1 per bag and each bag has 5 servings making it only $0.20 for each serving of fresh green beans!
  • People say that it’s hard to get fresh produce to fit in their budget but if you wait for the sales you can get a good price
  • This will be a great side dish for lunch and dinner


I found the savings here:

    • True Couponing Website
    • Publix @ Gateway Mall 7999 Dr MLK Jr St N, St. Petersburg, FL 33702
    • Tampa Bay Times newspaper

****Keep in mind prices may vary at different Publix locations

Comparing Winter Squash

Acorn Squash

  • Appearance: shaped like an acorn of course!
  • Available: All year
  • Size: 1-2 pounds
  • Nutrition:9 grams of fiber per cup, 25% DV of potassium
  • Ideal for: roasting with the skin on due to tough exterior

Buttercup Squash

  • Flavor: sweet pulp
  • Texture: firm and somewhat dry but rich, similar to a sweet potato
  • Ideal for: baking with the skin on, steamed, or pureed

Butternut Squash

  • Appearance: orange flesh
  • Available: All year
  • Flavor: mild & sweet
  • Nutrition: excellent source of vitamins C & A, > 6 grams of fiber per cup
  • Ideal for: roasting or tossed in stew or smoothies

Carnival Squash

  • Background: Hybrid of acorn & sweet dumpling squash
  • Flavor: sweet, buttery, and rich when roasted
  • Ideal for: roasting, can be used in any recipe as a substitute for acorn or butternut squash

Delicata Squash

  • Appearance: oblong with green stripes and yellow
  • Flavor: sweet
  • Texture: smooth and creamy
  • Ideal for: roasting or stuff with savory fillings such as whole grains
  • Pairs with: parmesan, nuts, and woody herbs like rosemary for a savory spin

Hubbard Squash

  • Appearance: dark green, orange, or pale blue rind
  • Flavor: sweet
  • Texture: grainy
  • Size: up to 20 pounds
  • Ideal for: mashing or pureeing into a sauce or filling for a pie

Kabocha Squash

  • Background: Kabo0cha is Japanese for “squash”
  • Appearance: smooth and yellow
  • Available: All year in green & red varieties
  • Flavor: sweet with notes of honey, becomes custardy when cooked
  • Nutrition: less fibrous than the others
  • Ideal for: soup when pureed or as pie filling with the skin on due to tough exterior

Red Kuri Squash

  • Background: Sometimes called the baby red hubbard, native to Japan
  • Flavor: chestnut-like
  • Texture: smooth & creamy yellow pulp
  • Ideal for: roasting in the skin and scooped out due to the hard rind

Spaghetti Squash

  • Appearance: pale yellow
  • Flavor: mild, slightly sweet
  • Texture: crunchy, stringy flesh resembling noodles
  • Nutrition: lower in vitamin A than the others
  • Ideal for: using in place of noodles when cooked, top with olive oil or tomato-based sauces

Sugar Pumpkin

  • Background: one of the most popular winter squashes, commonly canned and available at supermarkets
  • Appearance: squat
  • Available: All year
  • Flavor: sweet
  • Nutrition: < 50 calories per cup
  • Ideal for: roasting or pureeing into a soup, oatmeal, or pie filling and other desserts

Sweet Dumpling Squash

  • Appearance: most petite, weighing < 2 pounds
  • Flavor: sweet with a tender edible rind
  • Ideal for: cutting in half, stuffing, and roasting for a quick & colorful meal



Moore, Marisa. “Winter Squash”. Food and Nutrition. November/December 2016. 30-31.

Grocery Store Savings – 2/16/17 Publix

pastaOriginal Price: $6.76 for 4 boxes of pasta         I paid: $0.43 for 4 boxes of pasta

Barilla Pasta: 4 boxes that are $1.69 BOGO + four $0.55 off 1 Publix ad coupons + one $0.75 off 3 newspaper coupon

  • That’s only $0.11 per box and each box has 6-8 servings making it only $0.01 to $0.02 per serving!
  • The Publix coupons are only good on the specialty pastas such as whole grain and white fiber. This is great because I’ll have extra fiber to fill me up when I make this as a side dish or main meal, perfect hot or as a cold pasta salad.
  • If you’re able to get 2 of those newspaper coupons and 6 of the Publix ad coupons you can buy 6 boxes of pasta for a total of $0.27 making it only $0.05 per box


Original Price: $4.58 for 2 packages of bars of soap       I paid: $0.79 for 2 packages

Dial bar soap: $2.29 BOGO + one $1.50 off 2 newspaper coupon

  • That’s only $0.40 per package and each package has 3 bars of soap making it only $0.13 for each bar of soap!
  • My boyfriend loves bar soap making this perfect for him


Original Price: $4.38 for 2 bottles of creamer           I paid: $0.19 for 2 bottles

International Delight coffee creamer: $2.19 BOGO + two $1 off 1 printable coupons

  • That’s only $0.10 per bottle and each bottle has 32 servings making less than $0.01 for each serving of creamer!
  • I use creamer every morning for my coffee so it’s nice to know I’ll have a 2 months supply for less than a quarter. There are all different flavors to try out, get creative


Original Price: $5.50 for 2 boxes of pancake mix           I paid: $1.75 for 2 boxes

Aunt Jemima pancake mix: $2.75 BOGO + one $1 off 2 newspaper coupon

  • That’s only $0.88 per box and each box has 20 servings making $0.04 for each serving of pancakes!
  • Like I said last week, I’m going camping soon and these will be great for breakfast since you just need to add water. Also, I love making pancakes at home on the weekends and my boyfriend loves eating them so the 2nd box will stay here.


Original Price: $6.34 for 2 bottles of syrup            I paid: $2.17 for 2 bottles

Aunt Jemima syrup: $3.17 BOGO + one $1 off 2 newspaper coupon

  • That’s only $1.09 per bottle and each bottle has 12 servings making $0.09 for each serving of syrup!
  • What good are pancakes without syrup?


I found the savings here:

    • True Couponing Website
    • Publix @ Gateway Mall 7999 Dr MLK Jr St N, St. Petersburg, FL 33702
    • Tampa Bay Times newspaper

****Keep in mind prices may vary at different Publix locations

Grocery Store Savings – 2/10/17 Publix

img_53481Original Price: $4.58 for 2 bottles of French’s ketchup         I paid: $0.29 for 2 bottles

French’s Ketchup: $2.29 BOGO + two $1.00 off 1 newspaper coupons

  • That’s only $0.15 for each bottle of ketchup!
  • Everyone knows that ketchup is a great condiment that will come in handy, especially for only $0.15. I happen to be going camping in a couple weeks so this will be nice to have a bottle to bring for everyone to share for our hot dogs and burgers.


Original Price: $6.98 for 2 bags of Pretzel Crisps       I paid: $1.49 for 2 bags

Pretzel Crisps pretzel crackers: $3.49 BOGO + two $1.00 off 1 newspaper coupons

  • That’s only $0.75 per bag and each bag has 7 servings making it only $0.11 for each serving of pretzel crackers
  • These are great alone as snacks, top with cheeses & veggies to make fun hors d’ouevres  or use to dip with hummus, guac, or salsa. Again, I’m going camping in a couple weeks so these will be perfect to snack on while we wait for lunch & dinner to get grilled


Original Price: $5.70 for 2 bags of Simple Potatoes hash browns           I paid: $1.75 for 2 bags

Simply Potatoes hash browns: $2.85 BOGO + two $0.55 off 1 newspaper coupons

  • That’s only $0.88 for each bag which has 7 servings making it only $0.13 for each serving of hash browns
  • These are great for breakfast in the morning, just toss some oil in a skillet and let them brown while you make everything else. These will also be great for breakfast on our camping trip.


I found the savings here:

    • True Couponing Website
    • Publix @ Gateway Mall 7999 Dr MLK Jr St N, St. Petersburg, FL 33702
    • Tampa Bay Times newspaper

Mini Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

img_5338My friend introduced this recipe from Chocolate Covered Katie to me at work and it’s my go to for easy brunch, sweet treats, travel snacks, etc. Once you get the initial ingredients (I’m sure you may have many of them already), you’ll be able to make the recipe over and over again. I like it when I happen to buy a bunch of bananas and they start to go bad before I can eat them all. I just peel them, put them in a freezer safe Ziploc bag and use them later in this recipe

Makes: 24 mini muffins

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes


  • Oven
  • 2 medium bowls
  • Whisk
  • Measuring cups (1 cup, 1/2 cup, 1/3 cup)
  • Measuring spoons (tablespoon (Tbsp), teaspoon (tsp), 1/2 teaspoon, 1/8 teaspoon)
  • Mini muffin pan
  • Mini ice cream scoop or spoon



  • Cooking spray
  • 2 medium bananas (or whatever fits in 1 cup)
  • 2 Tbsp milk (I used 2% but use whatever you have)
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp white or apple cider vinegar
  • 3 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp + 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips
  • 1/3 cup + 1 Tbsp sugar


1. Preheat oven to 350°F

2. Spray muffin pan with cooking spray

3. Whisk together the 2 bananas, 2 Tbsp milk, 2 tsp vanilla, 2 tsp vinegar, and 3 Tbsp vegetable oil in the 1st bowl

4. In the 2nd bowl add 1 cup flour, 1/2 tsp + 1/8 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp baking soda, 1/2 tsp baking powder, 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips, and 1/3 cup + 1 Tbsp sugar

5. Pour ingredients from step 3 (the wet) into ingredients from step 4 (the dry)

6. Stir until evenly mixed

7. Use mini ice cream scoop or spoon to get batter into the greased muffin pan, filling about 2/3 of the way

8. Put in the oven, setting the timer for 15 minutes

9. After 15 minutes, remove the muffin pan from the oven


10. Remove from pan, let cool, and enjoy! (Or store for later eating)

My muffin pan is well greased and the muffins come out easily. If you know that yours has trouble sticking you may want to add liners.


*Nutrition for 1 mini muffin:

  • Calories: 80
  • Total fat: 3 g
  • Sodium: 99 mg
  • Total carbohydrate: 12 g
  • Sugar: 7 g
  • Protein: 1 g

Refer to the link above for the original recipe which includes recipes if you want to use gluten free flour, want to make it vegan, or want to use sweeteners instead of sugar.


Background Info:

  • Blue-green algae that gets its name from the spiral nature of its filaments
  • Reportedly used during the Aztec civilization
  • Lacks cellulose cell walls making it easily digested

Health Benefits:

  • For those lacking certain nutrients in their diet, spirulina can help with certain nutritional deficiencies

Nutrition Information (1 tablespoon, dried):

  • Calories: 20
  • Protein: 4 grams
  • Vitamin A: 40 IU
  • Iron: 2 mg
  • Magnesium: 14 mg


  • Algae grown in a natural setting has a higher possibility of being contaminated by bacteria & heavy metals which can be dangerous if consumed so make sure to choose products that have been tested for these contaminants


More randomized, placebo-controlled trials need to be done in humans with larger sample sizes but these are the current research findings

  • Allergies
    • 2 grams of blue-green algae daily for 6 months relieved symptoms of allergies in adults
  • Chronic fatigue
    • The only placebo-controlled trial did not show significant differences in fatigue between spirulina & placebo administered at a dose of 3 grams per day
  • Cholesterol
    • Taking 4.2 grams per day showed a significant reduction in LDL cholesterol after 8 weeks, no changes in HDL
  • Diabetes
    • 1 gram of blue-green algae twice daily for 2 months showed lower blood sugar levels in those with diabetes
  • Exercise
    • Men taking 6 grams daily for 4 weeks could sprint for longer periods of time before becoming tired
  • Hepatitis C
    • Conflicting outcomes, showing liver function that worsened & improved
  • Menopause symptoms
    • 1.6 grams of blue-green algae taken daily for 8 weeks lowered anxiety & depression in women with menopause
  • Oral leukoplakia
    • 1 gram of spirulina daily by mouth for 12 months reduced oral leukoplakia in people who chew tobacco


  • If you are pregnant or breastfeeding
  • If you have an autoimmune disease as it might cause your immune system to become more active & increase your disease symptoms
  • If you have PKU, it contains phenylalanine

Drug Interactions: 

  • Immunosuppressants
    • As stated previously, blue-green algae may increase the immune system which would decrease the effectiveness of medications that decrease the immune system
  • Anticoagulants
    • Blue-green algae might slow blood clotting and if taken with other medications that slow blood clotting it may increase the chances of bruising & bleeding



Restaurant Review – Rise Pies – Tampa


Address: International Plaza 2223 N. Westshore Blvd, Tampa, FL, 33607

Phone: 813-327-4704

Parking: It’s at the mall food court so depending on the time of year you can easily find parking or use the valet service.

Seating: Again, in the mall food court. Plenty of seating cafeteria style

Service: Fast and friendly. You get exactly what you want and watch them make your personalized creation

A nice break from the traditional food court options. In a nutshell it’s like Subway for pizza. You can choose from their classic & specialty pizzas or build your own and they make it right in front of you. Takes less than 5 minutes to cook and you have 4 pieces of a personal pizza.


rise-piesBuild Your Own – $5.29 to $9.75

Start with your choice of dough, sauce, cheese, and seasonings. Want some toppings? Add 1 for $1.26 more, a 2nd is another $1, a 3rd is another $1 or just go unlimited for $9.75. Lots of traditional and gourmet toppings to choose from. You can even ask to get certain things on only half if you’re sharing with someone that doesn’t like all the things you do.

Protein Toppings:

Anchovies, Bacon, Prosciutto, Italian Sausage, Meatballs, Pepperoni, Chicken, Shrimp

Vegetable Toppings:

Artichokes, Banana Peppers, Fresh Basil, Bell Peppers, Black Olives, Bruschetta Tomatoes, Caramelized Onions, Garlic, Tomatoes, Kalamata Olives, Mushrooms, Hot Peppers, Roasted Broccoli, Roasted Garlic, Roasted Red Peppers, Zucchini, Red Onions, Spinach, Sundried Tomatoes, Vegan cheese

If you have allergies this may not be ideal as things drop into each other. They have gluten free crust but I didn’t notice a 2nd oven so if it’s cooked in the same oven as regular crust you’ll still have issues for Celiac’s disease.