Monday, September 28, 2009

Garden Veggie Wrap

A nice alternative to a regular sandwich for lunch or dinner.


1 cup broccoli florets
6 asparagus spears
1 red bell pepper, cut lengthwise into large strips (about 4-6)
½ cup shredded carrot
¼ cup corn (fresh, canned or frozen thawed)
8 olives, sliced
¼ cup chopped fresh basil
1-2 tablespoons chopped red onion
2 tablespoons light cream cheese
2 whole wheat tortillas
Salt, pepper, garlic powder (optional seasonings)


Wash and cook the peppers, asparagus and broccoli, either by grilling them on the barbeque or a large non-stick pan about 3-5 minutes each side, until just slightly soft. Place aside to cool. Meanwhile rinse and chop the basil, onion and olives. Spread 1 tablespoon of cream cheese on each tortilla to thinly coat, add the onions, olives, basil, carrots, corn and the cooked broccoli, asparagus and red bell pepper, layering them in the middle. Add salt, pepper and garlic powder to taste if desired, roll and eat!

Makes 2 wraps, 2 servings

Serving size 1 wrap: Calories 260 Protein 9 g Carb 39 g Fiber 7 g Sugars 8 g Fat 8 g Saturated fat 1.5g Sodium 530 mg


Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Italian Chopped Salad

This is my homemade and somewhat healthier version of the traditional chopped salad commonly served in Italian eateries. Great as a starter salad or serve yourself a larger portion and top with grilled chicken, lean ham or turkey to make it a meal.


4 cups chopped lettuce
½ cup chopped tomato
½ cup shredded carrots
½ cup roasted red peppers (jarred-rinsed, or roast your own on the grill)
½ cup canned kidney or garbanzo beans, rinsed well
¼ cup chopped black olives
¼ cup low fat shredded mozzarella cheese (*use a gluten-free brand such as Trader Joe's or Precious if you are on a gluten-free diet)


Rinse, dry and chop all of the vegetables, beans and olives and put in a large bowl. Sprinkle with the cheese and toss with your favorite Italian dressing or try mine below:

Basic Balsamic Dressing


3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard (*use a gluten-free brand such as Trader Joe's if you are on a gluten-free diet)
1 tablespoon water
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
1 teaspoon honey

Combine all the above ingredients in a small bowl, whisk together and serve.

Makes about 4 servings

Serving size: 1/4th of recipe with dressing Calories 180 Protein 5 g Carb 13 g Fiber 3 g Sugars 5 g Fat 13.5 g Saturated fat 2 g Sodium 330 mg

Serving size: 1/4th of recipe without dressing Calories 80 Protein 5 g Carb 10 g Fiber 3 g Sugars 3 g Fat 2.5 g Saturated fat <1 g Sodium 240 mg


Sunday, September 20, 2009

Another Food FYI Post: Watching Weight?.... Watch What You Gulp!

Did you know that the average size of soft drinks has increased to a whopping 20 ounces in today’s day and age and that this amount of soda or juice can easily add up to an extra 240-300 calories per day?! Replacing juice or regular soda with water at least once a day can cut as much as 1700-2100 calories per week, a deficit that could result in at least a half pound weight loss weekly!!


Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Frozen Banana Cashew Bites

A bite size frozen mini desert treat….


1 banana, sliced vertically into 4 pieces (cylinder-like)
2 tablespoons finely chopped cashews
1 tablespoon fat free caramel sauce (such as Smuckers)
tooth picks, plastic wrap and a medium tupperware/pyrex dish


Lay a large piece of plastic wrap on a clean surface and place the banana pieces on one corner section and the chopped cashews in another section. Spread the caramel sauce in the middle. Place a toothpick through the middle of each banana (like a popsicle) and roll it in the caramel sauce until evenly covered, then do the same with the cashews to coat it. Place the covered bananas with the sticks facing up in a tupperware or pyrex container, cover and freeze for at least 4-6 hours until firm.

Make 4 servings

Serving size: 1 bite Calories 60 Protein 1 g Carb 11 g Fiber 1 g Sugars 6 g Fat 2 g Saturated fat 0 g Sodium 15 mg


Sunday, September 13, 2009

Ridiculously Easy Cumin Grilled Cauliflower

Spice up cauliflower on the grill with a sprinkle of cumin


3 cups cauliflower florets, rinsed and broken into small florets
ICB or a tablespoon light margarine, melted
½ teaspoon ground cumin
salt and pepper to taste
aluminum foil and cooking spray


Put the cauliflower in the center of a large piece of aluminum foil coated with cooking spray. Spray with ICB (or pour melted margarine over it), sprinkle with ¼ teaspoon of cumin and salt and pepper (if desired). Fold over the sides of foil to make a closed pouch and place on a heated barbeque grill. Heat for 5 minutes, open (carefully since they will be hot) and turn each piece over,. Sprinkle with ¼ teaspoon cumin and heat for another 5 minutes until tender when pierced with a fork.

Makes 4 servings

Serving size: 1/4th of recipe Calories 20 Protein 2 g Carb 4 g Fiber 2 g Sugars 2 g Fat 0 g Saturated fat 0 g Sodium 50 mg


Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Veggie Potstickers

These healthy little packages are bursting with veggie flavor.


12 wonton wrappers, I used Wing Hing
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh ginger
1 clove garlic finely chopped
¼ cup chopped green onion
½ cup chopped celery
½ cup chopped or shredded carrots
½ cup chopped water chestnuts (canned, rinsed and drained)
1 cup chopped Napa cabbage
½ cup chopped mushroom
1 tablespoon low sodium soy sauce
3-4 teaspoons sesame oil


Place 1 teaspoon sesame oil, garlic and ginger and onions in a large skillet, pan or wok and sauté for a few minutes until slightly browned. Add another teaspoon sesame oil and throw in the celery, carrot and water chestnuts and sauté for about 3-4 minutes. Then add another teaspoon of sesame oil, the tablespoon of soy sauce, the mushrooms and cabbage and sauté for another 3-4 minutes until all the vegetables are slightly softened. Spoon onto a dish and let cool for a few minutes. Meanwhile take out the wonton wrappers and lay them out on a cutting board or clean surface. Spoon one heaping tablespoon of the mixture onto one side of the wrapper, wet all the edges with water (using your fingers), fold over the wrapper to make a triangle and pinch close all along the edges. Add the last teaspoon of sesame oil to the skillet on high heat and add the filled wontons, heat about 3-5 minutes on each side until lightly browned and slightly crispy. Or if you like the outsides softer you can steam them for a few minutes on each side in a the pan in a ¼-1/2 inch of boiling water, with a top on. Another alternate way to cook the wontons is to bake them at 350 degrees on a baking sheet about 7-10 minutes each side.

Makes 12 wontons, 12 servings

Serving size 1 wonton: Calories 45 Protein 1 g Carb 6 g Fiber 0 g Sugars 2 g Fat 1.5 g Saturated fat 0 g Sodium 85 mg


Sunday, September 6, 2009

Low Carb Veggie Lasagna

No noodles in this one, but with this array of delicious vegetables paired with the cheese and basil, you won’t miss them much…. A great recipe for those on a gluten-free diet too!


1 large eggplant or 2 small
2 red bell peppers
2 large or 4 small peeled carrots
3 medium or 5 small zucchini
1 package button mushrooms
¾ cup washed and chopped fresh basil
One 15 ounce container of low fat ricotta cheese (*use gluten-free oats such as Precious if you are on a gluten-free diet)
2 cups of marinara sauce (I used 1 jar of Trader Joes Traditional Marinara)
2 cups low fat mozzarella cheese (*use gluten-free oats such as Precious or Trader Joe's if you are on a gluten-free diet)
salt and pepper to taste
cooking spray


Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Wash and cut all the veggies lengthwise into ¼ inch slices. Grill them in batches on the barbeque or a large non-stick pan about 5-7 minutes each side, until just slightly soft. Place aside to cool. In a small bowl, combine the chopped basil and ricotta, adding salt and pepper to taste if desired. To assemble: coat a 13 X 9 inch baking pan with cooking spray and layer with eggplant to cover the bottom. Spread the ricotta/basil mixture over the eggplant and then layer zucchini and peppers on top. Pour on the marinara to evenly coat, top with carrots and mushrooms and then bake for 30 minutes. Sprinkle with the cheese, bake some more until cheese is melted, about 5-7 minutes and then serve.

Makes 1 pan, 9 servings

Serving size 1/9 of recipe, large square : Calories 170 Protein 15 g Carb 17 g Fiber 6 g Sugars 9 g Fat 6 g Saturated fat 3 g Sodium 570 mg


Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Banana Nut Cookies

Banana bread meets oatmeal cookie……

3/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 ¼ cups oats (quick or regular)
1 teaspoon baking soda
¾ cup brown sugar
1 egg or ¼ cup egg substitute
¼ cup margarine
3/4 cup mashed banana
½ cup nuts
1 teaspoon vanilla (optional)


Note: This dough is best made the day before and refrigerated for at least 8-12 hours ahead of time.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix flour, oats, and baking soda in a small to medium bowl. In a larger bowl, mix the brown sugar, egg, margarine, banana, and vanilla. Slowly start adding the flour mixture to the larger bowl with the egg/sugar mixture until a soft thick dough is formed. Stir in the nuts and drop the cookie dough in rounded spoonfuls (or use a small ice cream scooper) onto a baking sheet to make 24 cookies. Bake for 12- 15 minutes or until lightly browned.
Makes 2 dozen cookies
Serving size: 1 cookie Calories 100 Protein 2 g Carb 14 g Fiber 1 g Sugars 7 g Fat 4 g saturated fat 1 g Sodium 20 mg


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