Homemade

Homemade Lemon Floor Cleaner

We’ve been using a homemade solution on our floors for awhile now that is just 1 part vinegar to 3 parts water.  It works fine honestly, but it stinks and our basement floor gets super dirty and the vinegar/water wasn’t quite cutting it.  It’s the room where the kids use the bathroom, I do laundry, we all take off our shoes and we also keep our messy craft supplies.  You get the picture.

I adapted this recipe for a Lemon & Vinegar Spray Cleaner from a few different recipes I’ve seen around, and I love it! It smells great and the little bit of soap in it really gets the mud & dirt off our dark laminate floors without leaving streaks.

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I found these refillable 28-ounce spray bottles at Dollar Tree.  They came in a bunch of different colors and so far they are spraying great! You can never beat $1 but if you don’t have a Dollar Tree near you, I did find a 3-pk of bottles at Amazon for $6.99 that are eligible for free Super Saver Shipping.

I had all the ingredients at home already which made this really easy to throw together. Just mix all the ingredients together in a bottle and it’s ready.  The below recipe fit perfectly in the 28-ounce bottle.

Homemade Lemon Floor Spray

Homemade Lemon Floor Cleaning Spray

  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup vinegar
  • 1/8 cup dishwasher detergent
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice

Make sure and check out Melody’s recent post on how she made Homemade Dryer Sheets and also a Homemade Granite Cleaner that I am loving!

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Homemade Cleaning Supplies: Granite Spray

by Emilie on April 29, 2013

Homemade Granite Cleaning Spray

We have super dark granite and it shows everything! I typically just clean it with vinegar and water but when I want to get rid of the streaks, the only thing we’ve found that worked was Granite Gold. It’s super expensive and never goes on sale so I was eager to try out a homemade version. For just pennies, I tried out the below recipe and it works great. I’m really impressed with how it leaves no streaks.

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I found these refillable spray bottles at Dollar Tree.  They came in a bunch of different colors and so far they are spraying great! You can never beat $1 but if you don’t have a Dollar Tree near you, I did find a 3-pk of bottles at Amazon for $6.99 that are eligible for free Super Saver Shipping.

Homemade Granite Cleaner Spray

I had all the ingredients at home already which made this a breeze. I used tea tree oil to cover the rubbing alcohol scent but you could use any essential oil. I think a lemon or tangerine would be wonderful! Just mix all the ingredients together in a bottle and it’s ready.  I doubled the recipe below to fill an entire spray bottle.

Homemade Granite Spray

  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup rubbing alcohol
  • 2 drops dish detergent
  • 3 drops essential oil of your choice

We are planning on making a few other homemade cleaning supplies this month and we would love to hear your favorite recipes or natural cleaning tips.

Make sure and check out Melody’s recent post on how she made Homemade Dryer Sheets.

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Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. When you click on these links, you are supporting this blog. Thanks!

Homemade Date Caramel and Vanilla Coffee Creamer

I have been making my own coffee creamer for about a year now and love playing around with different flavor combinations.  I start with my original Chocolate Almond Creamer recipe and swap in different extracts and sweeteners to change things up.  While I love the chocolate-based creamer, I have been on the hunt for something with a sweeter profile without a huge amount of sugar or other sweeteners.

My husband and I started a Clean Eating Challenge with our gym at the beginning of the year and have migrated to a semi-Paleo lifestyle, omitting all grains and most sugars and dairy.  Since I am addicted to food blogs and Pinterest, I have spent some time finding lots of different recipes that fit this lifestyle.  After making my 3rd or 4th batch of Homemade Larabars, I came up with the idea of making a homemade date caramel to add to my creamer.  While the caramel is pretty mind-blowing by itself, adding it to coffee every morning is pure heaven.

First step is to make up a batch of super easy date caramel.

Homemade Date Caramel and Vanilla Coffee Creamer

Homemade Date Caramel

6-8 ounces whole pitted dates
3 T. unsweetened almond milk
1 T. coconut oil
1/2 t. pure vanilla extract
Sea salt to taste

Soak dates for approximately one hour.  This will make them more pliable and easier to process.  Strain and add to food processor.  Add almond milk, coconut oil and vanilla extract and blend until fairly smooth.  It doesn’t have to be perfect, as you will end up straining any larger particles at the end of the creamer process.

Add a pinch or two of sea salt and blend.  This will help with the sweet/salty flavor and gives the caramel the perfect kick.  Add more if desired.

Homemade Date Caramel and Vanilla Coffee Creamer

Ingredients:

6 cups half and half
1 batch Homemade Date Caramel
2 T. honey (I use organic raw honey from Tropical Traditions)
2 T. vanilla extract

Directions:

Combine first 3 ingredients in a medium sauce pan, whisking well to fully combine the caramel.  Bring to a low simmer over medium-low heat (usually takes 5-7 minutes).  As soon as it starts to simmer, remove from heat and add vanilla extract.

Pour through a fine mesh sieve into container of your choice and immediately refrigerate.

You can definitely adjust the recipe to make more or less, but this amount will last me about a week and a half in the fridge.  You could make the date caramel ahead of time and keep it refrigerated until you are ready to make your creamer.  You could also use vanilla beans for a stronger vanilla flavor.  Amazon generally has them for less than $1 each, Winco also has them in the bulk section but they are crazy expensive.

Please note: This is nowhere near as sweet as the store bought stuff.  It took my taste buds a week or two to adjust to the different flavor profile, but now I prefer the homemade version.  The flavors are true and are a great complement to my morning coffee.

Check out our Recipe Box for more ideas and inspiration.  Don’t miss our list of Homemade Pantry Staples as well, with great ideas for replacing boxed or processed items with homemade.

Don’t forget to follow This Beautiful Frugal Life on Facebook so you don’t miss an update.  We post lots of fun recipes, random thoughts on parenting, our journey through the clean eating world, our obsession with CrossFit and more.


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Honey Mustard Dressing or Dip

As part of the Great Food Revolution of 2012, we will be sharing several recipes for pantry staples to help replace the more processed versions in your pantry.  You can read more about some of the simple pantry swaps we have recently made here.

Honey Mustard Dressing or Dip
*Original recipe from Allrecipes.com

Ingredients:

1 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup dijon mustard
1/4 cup honey
2 T. lemon juice

Directions:

Whisk together all ingredients and immediately refrigerate.  Use as a dressing or dip for vegetables or crackers.

Smoky Chipotle-Balsamic Dressing

Smoky Chipotle-Balsamic Dressing

Ingredients:

3/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1-2 canned chipotle chiles in Adobo sauce
1 t. sauce from chipotle chiles
1 t. dried oregano
Salt to taste

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in the blender or food processor and process until smooth.  Taste and season with additional salt as desired.  Pour into a jar and store in fridge, shake well before serving.

You can pick up quite a few of these ingredients through Vitacost.  If you sign up for a free account, you will receive a $10 credit via email that can be used towards your first purchase of $30 or more.

Please share with us if you have tried something similar or have a favorite recipe!  You can also follow my Salad Dressings Pinterest board for more ideas.

Don’t miss out on all of our Homemade Pantry Staples recipes.

In case you missed it:

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For the past few years, our family has been working hard to eliminate all processed foods from our diet.  I drink coffee creamer every day, so I knew this was a big one to address.  My coffee is my refuge and I want to enjoy it, I don’t want to feel like I’m sacrificing in the name of health.  So I got to work. Apparently, homemade coffee creamer is pretty easy and economical.  I’m not convinced that it’s even easier to go to the store and buy it pre-made.  That requires driving.  And hauling my children through the store.

I used a little bit of store-bought coffee creamer at my parents recently and it was too sweet.  After I drank it, I could almost feel it settling in my stomach.  It’s crazy how your body adapts to what you put in it!  I will never go back.

Chocolate Almond Coffee Creamer
*Adapted from Deliciously Organic

Ingredients:

4 cups half and half
4 T. maple syrup
4 T. cacao powder
1 T. honey (I use organic raw honey from Tropical Traditions)
2 T. almond extract

Directions:

Combine first 4 ingredients in a medium sauce pan.  Bring to a low simmer over medium-low heat (usually takes 5-7 minutes).  As soon as it starts to simmer, remove from heat and add almond extract.

Pour through a fine mesh sieve into container of your choice and immediately refrigerate.

You can mix and match ingredients to your heart’s content.  I generally keep the maple syrup or replace with an equal amount of honey for sweetness. I have swapped out vanilla extract for the almond or used peppermint to make a Peppermint Mocha-type creamer (be very judicious with peppermint, it can be super strong).

I generally pick up my half and half at Costco for about $2.75/half gallon.  They also have great prices on maple syrup and honey, if you’re looking to buy in a larger amount.  You can find cacao powder through Amazon or check your local health food store.

Don’t miss my Homemade Date Caramel and Vanilla Coffee Creamer recipe if you are looking for something a little sweeter.

Please share with us if you have tried something similar or have a favorite recipe!

Don’t miss out on all of our Homemade Pantry Staples recipes.

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Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. When you click on these links, you are supporting this blog. Thanks!

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