Make Your Own Casserole Sauce Mix

Casseroles and cream soups go together. They are great on homegrown vegetables fresh from the garden, jar or freezer.

But the more we read the labels, and if you're into watching sodium in your diet and economics, there has to be an alternative. There is. You can make your own healthy casserole or cream soup mix. I keep a container of the mix handy for white sauces, gravies and soups.

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The mix uses low fat and low sodium ingredients. You'll be surprised how easy the mix is to use and so much healthier. For example, one 10.5-ounce can of cream soup has 225 calories and 12.5 grams of fat. The homemade mix has only 107 calories and just 1 gram of fat. If we compared a 1/2 cup serving, it would be 90 calories verses 43 calories and 5 grams of fat verses a trace.

The sodium picture is even brighter. One can of soup has 2,225 milligrams of sodium compared to 1,200 in the casserole sauce mix if regular bouillon is used. Per one-half cup serving, this translates into 890 milligrams or 37 percent daily value for the canned soup and 480 milligrams or 20 percent daily value for the casserole mix. If you use reduced sodium bouillon as called for in the recipe, you'd reduce the sodium level even more. Not only will you spare your body fat and sodium, you'll be saving pennies for your pocket too and eliminating cans from the landfill!

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The homemade casserole sauce mix is a basic white sauce mix with some herbs if you choose. When ready to use, if you like cream of celery soup, add some chopped fresh celery to your dish. If you prefer cream of mushroom, add some fresh or canned mushroom pieces. Or, if it's cream of broccoli, add fresh or frozen chopped broccoli. Be creative.

Healthy Casserole Sauce Mix

Use instead of canned cream soup

  • 2 cups nonfat dry milk powder
  • 3/4 cup cornstarch or clear gel
  • 1/4 cup instant reduced sodium chicken or beef bouillon granules
  • 1/2 tsp. dried crushed thyme (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp. dried crushed basil (optional)
  • 1/4 tsp. ground white or black pepper

Directions:

Combine ingredients. Store in an airtight container.

To prepare as a substitute for one can of condensed cream soup in recipes, stir together 1/3 cup dry mix and 1 1/4 cup water in a saucepan or microwave cooking dish. Cook and stir until thickened. Mix makes the equivalent of nine cans condensed soup.

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As you plan your company dishes for this holiday season, why don't you mix up a batch of casserole sauce mix and cook up a healthy holiday meal. By sharing your healthy version of the family's favorite dishes, you just might encourage other family members to try the casserole sauce mix too. Of course, you could always mix up a batch and give it as a gift using a recipe card as a gift tag.

Source: University of Missouri Extension

By Karma

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May 20, 20040 found this helpful

Wow - what a good link! I had just decided that bought jars of sauce were too expensive and I could make my own with a white sauce base and seasonings. This would be much more convenient than making a sauce from scratch each time. Hope it tastes good!!

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September 11, 20050 found this helpful

Another idea that i i have found to be very tasty is very cheap and simple. I live in Spain and the chicken is quite expensive apart from the thighs and the legs so i buy 2-4 of those and put them in a casserole dish. To this simple mix 2 chicken stock cubes with a pint of water and some parsley, oregano and a pinch of curry (I know it sounds weird)

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In the same dish add chopped carrots onions and potaotoes and simple put in the oven at about 220C for an hour and a half - it is so easy -prepared in 5 mins and eaten in 2! its delicious

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