With the holidays here and a new year on its way, many of us, at the very least, are thinking about how to get back – and stay – on track with a healthier diet and lifestyle. But with plenty of holiday get-togethers and celebrations still on the horizon, you may think it doesn't make sense – or you just don't have the time – to make any meaningful food or fitness changes before January hits. I beg to differ!

To help motivate you to make some changes, even small ones, in what (and how much) goes into your mouth and how you move your body, here's a roundup of five of my favorite tools. I have no doubt that if you try them, you'll not only get on a more healthful eating and lifestyle course, but you'll be motivated to stay on it well beyond the start of the new year.

• "The Pinterest Diet: How to Pin Your Way to Thin" (Price: $19.95)

Written by registered dietitian and fellow Eat + Run blogger Mitzi Dulan, a Pinterest superstar with more than 3.5 million followers, The Pinterest Diet provides an alternative to what Dulan calls the 3 D's of diets – discipline, denial and deprivation.

The book teaches readers how to develop healthier and sustainable eating and fitness habits and shed unwanted pounds using Pinterest, a virtual pinboard that enables users to organize and share images and information found on the Web. Throughout the book, Dulan shows readers how in only 10 minutes a day, they can create their own motivating and empowering Pinterest boards tailored to their unique goals, preferences and passions.

Asked what it is about Pinterest that helps people lose weight or simply get healthier, Dulan replies in an e-mail that "Pinterest makes it fun. A big part of my book is integrating my nutritional and fitness philosophies that have worked for years with clients, and I have found Pinterest to be a perfect vehicle for doing just that."

In The Pinterest Diet, readers can expect to find Dulan's top food recommendations, which include "MSF (Most Satisfying Foods) Factor Foods" that contain protein, fiber and healthy fats along with more than 50 recipes and 30 days of workouts, each lasting anywhere from 4 to 30 minutes.

PortionMate (Price: $14.95)

This set of brightly colored cylinders is an easy-to-use meal and snack measuring tool and comes with a nutrition and meal-planning guide that follows American Diabetes Association and Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics recommendations. Small enough to stash in a kitchen or desk drawer or to bring with you when you travel, it allows you to quickly and easily measure appropriate portions of carbohydrate- and protein-rich foods including fruits, vegetables, cereals and other grains, meats, cheese, nuts and seeds directly onto a plate or into a bowl.

Each cylinder has a color that corresponds to specific food groups. To use the tool, you simply choose the desired color cylinder, place it into your plate or bowl, fill it with food, lift and remove the cylinder and voila – you have perfect-sized portions for meals and snacks.

The tool is praised by many registered dietitians, among them Rebecca Bitzer of Maryland, who calls the measuring devices and accompanying nutrition guide "great tools to help people learn about the foods they're eating and how much they're eating." She suggests people use the rings as "measuring cups or just as visuals for how much to put on their plate, in their bowls or in their mouths!"

(Full disclosure: I was sent a complimentary PortionMate several months ago but made no promise to mention or positively review it.)

Meal Makeovers app (Price: $1.99)

Available for the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch, the Meal Makeovers recipe app was created by The Meal Makeover Moms – registered dietitians Liz Weiss and Janice Newell Bissex of Massachussetts. This handy and useful app is designed to help families everywhere get healthier (but still delicious) versions of classic recipes on the table without sweat or tears.

Meal Makeovers features over 50 recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner and dessert. Each "makeover" recipe describes the dish, makes suggestions for how to tweak it and provides simple, straightforward ingredient lists and step-by-step instructions. You can also find recipes that accommodate gluten-free, vegan and other types of diets or find those that work well for Christmas or other holidays.

[Read: How to Eat Intelligently (and Enjoyably) Over the Holidays.]

Jen Rehberger, executive producer and host of www.VickyandJen.com, a podcast and website with tips for families on simplifying life, is a longtime fan of The Meal Makeover Moms. "Since downloading the Meal Makeovers app on my phone, I have used it a lot! I have 'favorited' several snacks and meals for quick retrieval, since I usually have my phone on me," she writes in an e-mail, noting that she accessed a recipe list on a recent trip to the grocery store. "The convenience of the app and the confidence I have in the recipes make it a winner."

Fooducate website and app (Price: Free)

Hemi Weingarten, a father of three who was concerned about buying and preparing healthy food for his family, decided to take the task into his own hands in creating the Fooducate app. I think of the app as a grocery store appendage. It counts calories, grades your food, explains the ingredients you'll find in various products and offers healthier alternatives.

With an impressive database of more than 200,000 unique products, the app won first prize in the U.S. Surgeon General Healthy App Challenge. A fan of the app, Jeff Berman writes on Facebook, "Since I started using Fooducate, I'm down 40 pounds and maintained that weight loss for eight and a half months so far. After years of dieting, I owe my new healthy lifestyle solely to Fooducate. I don't look at it as a diet but rather a lifestyle change of making healthy choices via clean eating principles. My wife is also now on the Fooducate journey, and we are making and eating healthy food together daily as a family for the first time in four years."

Geocaching app (Price: Free or $9.99, depending on the app)

Ever hear of Geocaching? This global treasure-hunting game, in which people search for geocaches – camouflaged containers, often with small trinkets for trade – is played by millions of people worldwide. According to its cofounder, Bryan Roth, "Most people in the U.S. live within just a few blocks from a geocache – or 'hidden treasure' as most geocachers call it – and might not even know it."

As a game, sport, hobby – whatever you call it – geocaching delivers outdoor discovery, exploration and adventure for families, retirees or anyone who likes to play. There's even some evidence it can improve health. Preliminary results from a 14-month Texas A & M study called Geocaching for Exercise and Activity Research (GEAR) were presented last month at the annual meeting of the American Pubic Health Association in Boston. In the study, participants were given devices to track their movements and a logbook to record their level of geocaching intensity. The first results suggested a link between geocaching and improved health.

According to one of the researchers, "GEAR participants who report geocaching once a week or more are more likely to meet national guidelines for physical activity and are more likely to report good or very good health status compared to those who geocache less frequently." Geocachers also reported fewer days of poor physical and mental health compared to state level data. When asked about geocaching, devotee Neil Moore writes on Facebook, "I started geocaching two years ago. Within six months, I lost 25 pounds just from walking and biking on the trails. Plus my cardio has improved, and I generally feel better. I definitely sleep better."

Which app, gadget or activity helps you eat better and move more?

This post originally appeared on December 10, 2013 on the U.S. News' Eat + Run blog. You can view previous U.S. News articles I've written here

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hummus take 2

 

 

 

 

Have a hankering for hummus? Try this delicious home-style kind, courtesy of Sharon Palmer, RD, The Plant-Powered Dietitian.

Home-style hummus starring nutrient-rich chickpeas is a staple of the healthy, plant-based kitchen. Providing a rich, tasty source of plant protein, hummus offers unlimited versatility: use it as an appetizer dip with whole grain pita bread and vegetables, spread it on sandwiches, and dollop it over salads and grains.

Makes 2 cups (8 servings)

Ingredients:

One 15-ounce can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), no salt added, with liquid

2 garlic cloves

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2 tablespoons tahini (sesame seed paste)

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil

Pinch of paprika

Instructions: 

1. Drain the chickpeas, reserving the liquid. Put the beans into a blender or food processor.

2. Add garlic, lemon juice, tahini, black pepper, and olive oil, as well as about half of the reserved bean liquid.

3. Puree the bean mixture, adding additional bean liquid as necessary to produce a smooth, very thick dip.

4. Pour the bean dip into a serving dish and garnish with paprika. If not serving immediately, store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Note: To serve hummus as an appetizer, place a small serving dish of garnished hummus in the center of a platter. Arrange triangles of whole wheat pita bread and pieces of fresh raw vegetables, such as carrots, celery, bell peppers, mushrooms, asparagus, broccoli, and snow peas, on the platter.

Nutrition Information:

Per serving (1/4 cup):

Calories: 89

Carbohydrate: 13 g

Fiber: 3 g

Protein: 3 g

Total fat: 3 g

Saturated fat: 0 g

Sodium: 160 mg

Star nutrients: Folate (10% DV), manganese (21% DV)

 

Source: The Plant-Powered Diet: The Lifelong Eating Plan for Achieving Optimal Health, Beginning Today, copyright © Sharon Palmer, 2012. Reprinted by permission of the publisher, The Experiment.

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With the holidays here, you're likely going to be spending lots of time in your kitchen. To make entertaining more tasty and enjoyable without sabotaging your effort (or that of your guests) to eat nutritiously, here are two recipes featuring 3 superstar veggies–spinach, artichokes and butternut squash. Enjoy!

Baked Spinach & Artichoke Dip

Yield/Servings: Makes about 10 ¼ cup servings

Ingredients:

2 (14-ounce) cans water-packed artichokes, well drained
4 ounces firm silken tofu
3 large cloves garlic
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
2/3 cup 0% plain Greek Yogurt
1 package (10 ounces) frozen chopped spinach, thawed, drained and squeezed dry
1/4 teaspoon sea salt

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350F degrees.

2. In a high-speed blender puree the artichokes, tofu, and garlic.

3. In a separate medium bowl whisk together the Parmesan cheese, yogurt, spinach, and salt.

4. Combine the two mixtures; then pour into a medium-sized baking dish.

5. Sprinkle the top with more Parmesan.

6. Bake uncovered until heated through and the cheese on the top starts to brown, about 45 minutes.

Nutritional Analysis per serving:

Calories: 65

Fat: 1.9 g

Saturated Fat: 0.9 g

Cholesterol: 4 mg

Sodium: 282 mg

Carbohydrate: 5.2 g

Fiber: 1.4 g

Sugar: 1.7 g

Protein: 5.9 g

Calcium: 120 mg

Source: Rebecca Scritchfield, MA, RD

 

bn puree

 

 

 

 

 

 Roasted Butternut Squash

According to Cheryl Harris, MPH, RD, "Some people avoid butternut squash because it seems daunting. That couldn’t be further from the truth! It’s one of the easiest veggies to prepare." She considers roasted butternut squash to be a perfect Autumn side dish. "Nutritionally, it's a nice trade up from mashed potatoes. We just had it with chicken breast and roasted broccoli the other night and it worked nicely," says Harris. She also says it makes a great base for butternut squash soup.

Yield/Servings: 6 ½ cup servings

Ingredients:

1 whole butternut squash, 1.5-2 lbs

2 Tablespoons maple syrup

¼ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

Directions:

1. Put the squash on a lined sheet and puncture 5-6 times.

2. Roast at 400 until browning.

3. Flip it every 30 min. It takes 1.5-2 hours. It’s done when a fork easily puctures the squash.

4. Cut it open and scoop out the seeds.

5. Puree in a food processor with 2 Tablespoons maple syrup and 1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice.

6. Or, alternatively, use the roasted butternut squash in a soup.

Nutritional Analysis:

Calories: 58

Carbohydrates: 15g

Fat: 0g

Protein: 1g

Fiber: 0g

Cholesterol: 0g

Sodium: 5mg

Sugar: 5g

Source: Cheryl Harris, MPH, RD, Gluten-Free Goodness

 

 

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Get a few delicious ideas to rework all those leftovers in my Parents.com post.

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Learn how kids can get the sleep they need in my Parents.com post.

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Elise & Harvey's wedding @ The Palms Bay (Sun 8 25 13)_August 25, 20130280

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Disclaimer: I am being compensated for this blog post as part of the Philip Stein #liveintune campaign. Opinions expressed are my own.

When you think of romance, what comes to mind? For me, a hopeless romantic, romance is epitomized in the movie Titanic when Jack Dawson (played by Leonardo Dicaprio) sacrificed his life to let Rose DeWitt Bukater (Kate Winslet’s character) live. Romance oozes from the movie The Notebook, especially when Allie Hamilton (played by Gena Rowlands) and Noah Calhoun (played by James Garner) die in their sleep with their arms and bodies so beautifully intertwined.

In my own life, the idea of romance makes me think of a particular day during my childhood. Almost 30 years ago, in the late afternoon on a crisp winter day, my first true love rode miles on his horse to meet me in the woods. Forbidden to see one another, we knew we risked being caught by our parents—but that only made the desperate, sweet teenage kisses we shared and the way we professed our undying love to one another even more special. When I think of romance, I also think of another boyfriend—my last before I met the man who would become my husband. He called me gorgeous (even though I didn’t think I was) and always made me feel like I was the only woman in the room.

I also witnessed romance recently when our 44-year-old friend Harvey married Elise, one of my best camp friends. Although they first fell in love 22 years ago, when they were both 22, and parted ways, they were unexpectedly reunited after Elise’s previous marriage ended. They’ve been inseparable ever since. To mark the magic, Harvey counted down on Facebook the 22 days until their wedding day with poems, anecdotes, and gorgeous photos. A greater romance I’ve never known!

While romance—a “love affair” or “an emotional attraction or aura belonging to an especially heroic era, adventure, or activity”*—can be inspired by, or be expressed with, grand dramatic overtures, sometimes even little things can be romantic. Having been happily married to the same man, a hard working and devoted father to our two sons, aged 15 and 11, for more than 20 years, I think we’d both agree that it’s the little things—the inside jokes, the small gestures and favors, squeezing in a little one-on-one time (in between two full-time jobs, our sons’ homework help and basketball games), and enjoying solo time together when our sons go to overnight summer camp—that help us keep the spark alive.

Whether you’re looking for love, on the cusp of it, or are in a committed relationship, there are things you can do besides reading the 50 Shades of Grey trilogy (trust me) to ignite romance (or at least give it a jump-start). Here are three of my top tips to help you do just that in your own life:

1. Reclaim and redefine date night. At the beginning of their relationship, most couples seemingly make all the time in the world to go on dates and spend time together. But when the initial excitement of the relationship starts to dim, and real life sets in, many couples often find it too easy to allow work, children, or other responsibilities to get in the way of their private time together. Of course parenting or caring for older parents, logging too many hours at the office, and having a long to-do list can move date night to the back burner, it’s important for your own health—and that of your relationship—to reclaim date night. Even if that means grabbing a quick bite to eat, seeing a movie, or simply walking to and from favorite frozen yogurt shop (my husband and I started doing this just last summer), penciling in one-on-one time together each week, as you would an appointment, shows each of you—and the rest of your family—that your relationship matters and is worth making time for.

2. Put the ‘action’ in your activities. Instead of meeting for the usual drinks or heading to dinner and a movie with your significant other—or friends—plan something more active. Taking a brisk walk, jog, or bike ride in the park, heading to a spin or dance class, or training for some sort of competition together (like a 5 k race, triathlon, or even a charity walk) not only gives you quality time together, but can help you get in shape or stay fit. When we were first married, my husband and I would do 5K, 6 mile and 10K running races together (once we even did a 10 miler). We also play golf together, and love to hike together in places like Colorado, California and Hawaii. Being active in new and different ways not only creates a sense of adventure and accomplishment, but it can help you feel better physically and mentally—and help you be more open to experiencing romance. And as I wrote about in my upcoming book, Younger Next Week, being active and exercising can boost libido (it helps blood flow to al the right places, if you know what I mean). Let’s not forget that regular exercise also helps you look and feel better, and can therefore indirectly boost your confidence in-between the sheets!

3. Connect by disconnecting. Because for so many of us, the smart phone or laptop has become like a third appendage, it’s become far to easy to lose touch with all of our senses that allow us to recognize and enjoy romance—even when it’s staring right at us. So when you’re with your sweetie, put that cell phone away and really pay attention to him or her. Use all your senses to look at, listen to, touch and completely engage with your significant other. You may find that not having all the distractions reminds you why you were drawn to him or her in the first place. Just like you let nothing come between you and your Calvins, it’s wise to not let a cell phone or laptop come between you and your partner.

What are some of the ways you introduce or bring back the romance in your relationship? Share your to-dos, tips and ideas with the hashtag #liveintune below to help others bring romance back into their lives too.

Image of Harvey and Elise from their amazing wedding via Marc Millman Photography.

*Source: Merriam-Webster dictionary

 

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Just in time for Thanksgivukah come two delicious recipes for turkey and cranberry sauce. They'd make great additions to any dinner during the holidays--or whenever! Yum!

Prep Dish, Turkey & Cranberry photo AS

 

 

 

 

Rosemary-Citrus Turkey Breast

Yield/Servings: ~8

Ingredients:

1 bunch rosemary, roughly chopped

4 cloves garlic, roughly chopped

3 oranges

1 lemon

¼ cup olive oil

4 cups chicken broth (read ingredients and avoid added sugars and other unnecessary fillers)

~4 pound bone-in turkey breast

Directions:

1. Zest oranges & lemons and then juice.

2. In large storage container, stir together:

- citrus zest & juice

- chopped rosemary & garlic

- 4 cups chicken broth

- ¼ cup olive oil

- 1 cup water

- 2 Tablespoons salt

Add turkey breast to marinate.   

3. Marinate turkey for 24 hours (or a minimum of 1 hour up to 48 hours)

4.  Pre-heat oven to 450 F.

5. Remove turkey from marinade and place in baking pan. Put in oven at 450 F for 5 minutes.

6. Lower temperature to 400 F and continue to roast for ~1-1.5 hours or until internal temperature of 165 F.

Nutritional Analysis:

Calories: 140

Carbohydrates: 1 g

Fat: 3.5 g

Protein: 28 g

Fiber: 0 g

Cholesterol: 45 mg

Sodium: 480 mg

Sugar: 1 g

 

Orange Cranberry Sauce

Yield/Servings: 8

 Ingredients:

10 ounces cranberries (fresh or frozen, thawed)

1 Tablespoon orange zest (from ~2 oranges)

1 cup orange juice

¼ cup honey  

Directions:

1. In a small pot, place the following ingredients:

- 10 ounces cranberries

- 1 cup orange juice

- 1 Tablespoon orange zest

- ¼ cup honey

2. Stir the above together and place on high heat, bringing to a boil, lower to low heat, cooking for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

3. Transfer to bowl and place in refrigerator to cool.

Nutritional Analysis:

Calories: 60

Carbohydrates: 16 g

Fat: 0 g

Protein: 0 g

Fiber: 2 g

Cholesterol: 0 mg

Sodium: 0 mg

Sugar: 12 g

 

Source: Allison Stevens, MS, RD, LD, from Prep Dish’s gluten-free, dairy-free Thanksgiving Plan

 

 

 

 

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risotto photo

 

 

 

 

 

Here’s a delicious, hearty side dish from registered dietitian Victoria Shanta-Retelny.

Creamy like a typical risotto, but less fatty and caloric, this nutty-tasting rendition of the Italian classic will keep your heart healthy and fill you up on fewer calories!

Yield/Servings: 4 (½ cup) servings

Ingredients:

1 Tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1 small yellow onion, peeled and finely chopped

1 garlic clove, peeled and minced

1 cup wild rice

1 ½ cups vegetable broth, low-sodium

1 cup water

1 1/2 cups butternut squash, peeled and cut into bite-size pieces

2 rosemary sprigs, remove needles, minced

2 Tablespoons part-skim ricotta cheese

Pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions:

1. Steam the squash in a steamer pot over boiling water for 10 minutes or until tender enough to mash with a fork.  Puree squash in a food processor and set aside.

2. Heat olive oil in a heavy-bottomed pan and sauté onion and garlic over a low heat until soft and lightly browned.

3. Add rice and stir until well-coated add broth and water.  Bring to a boil and then turn heat down to simmer, cover.  Stir frequently, once rice has fully absorbed the liquid and is softening add squash and rosemary. Stir to combine.

4. Stir in ricotta cheese; season with salt and pepper to taste. It should be thick and creamy with the rice soft on the outside, but firm in the middle.

Nutritional Analysis:

Calories: 76

Carbohydrates: 15 g

Total Fat: 2 g

Protein: 2 g

Fiber: 2 g

Cholesterol: 8 mg

Sodium: 73 mg

Sugar: 4 g

Source: Victoria Shanta-Retelny, RDN, LDN

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Greek Yogurt Pancakes-4188

 

 

 

 

 

 

Whether you just ran a marathon (or are preparing for one), or simply want some nutrient-packed fuel to get your day going, this tasty twist on the typical pancake is sure to please. Add an extra half cup of fresh fruit or 100% fruit juice, and you're good to go. Enjoy!

Yield/Servings: 12 pancakes

Ingredients:

1 cup spelt flour

¼ teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

¼ teaspoon cinnamon

1 over-ripe banana

1 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt

2 eggs

¾ cup vanilla almond milk

¼ cup walnuts

½ cup fresh blueberries

½ teaspoon unsalted butter

Directions:

1. In a large bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and cinnamon together. Set aside.

2. In a small bowl, mash the banana and stir in the Greek yogurt. Set aside.

3. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs. Add the banana and Greek yogurt mixture to the eggs, and stir until combined. Add the almond milk and stir until incorporated.

4. Pour the liquids into the bowl with the flour, and gently fold until just incorporated, taking care not to over-mix.

5. Stir in the walnuts and blueberries.

6. Heat a nonstick skillet or electric skillet over medium-low heat, and coat the skillet with butter. Note: only coat the skillet with butter for the first batch.

7. Pour ¼ cup of the pancake batter into the skillet and heat until bubbly and golden brown, about 2-1/2 minutes.

8. Flip the pancake with a flat-sided spatula and cook an additional 30 seconds to 1 minute.

Nutritional Analysis:

Calories: 76

Carbohydrates: 12g

Fat: 2g

Protein: 3g

Fiber: 2g

Cholesterol: 0mg

Sodium: 74mg

Notes: You’ll know pancakes are ready to flip when you see little bubbles on the surface. Make extra pancakes on the weekend and freeze the leftovers. They reheat quickly in the microwave and you’ll have a homemade no-fuss breakfast in a flash.

Source: Flat Belly Cookbook for Dummies by Erin Palinski-Wade, RD, Tara Gidus, RD, and Kristina LaRue, RD

Full disclosure: No good or services were exchanged for posting this recipe.

What's your favorite way to make/eat pancakes?

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With the fall in full swing and the holidays fast approaching, eating well often goes on the back burner for many. But you can put together some healthful, delicious, and energizing meals to serve over the holidays or at family get togethers without sabotaging an otherwise healthful diet.

To help you get started, here are two delicious recipes from the new book, The Smart Shopper Diabetes Cookbook by Robyn Webb, M.S.. And don’t let the name of the book fool you: these recipes are sure to please everyone’s palates—even if they don’t have diabetes. Enjoy!

Turkey and Cranberry Salad

Turkey and Cranberry Salad

Yields 4 1-1/4 cup servings

Preparation Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 0

This pretty jewel-colored salad is perfect for the holidays. Why not serve it for a festive brunch along with some fresh whole-grain rolls and a side of steamed French green beans.

Ingredients

2 cups diced cooked low-sodium deli turkey breast

1/2 cup dried unsweetened cranberries

1/2 cup diced red bell pepper

1/2 cup diced yellow bell pepper

1/4 cup diced red onion

2 tablespoons minced scallions

Dressing

2 tablespoons raspberry vinegar

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1/2 teaspoon sugar

3 tablespoons olive oil

pinch sea salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Directions

1. In a large bowl, combine the turkey, cranberries, red and yellow peppers, red onion, and scallions.

2. In a small bowl, whisk together the vinegar, mustard, and sugar. Slowly, in a thin stream, whisk in the olive oil until the dressing is emulsified. Season with salt and pepper. Pour the dressing over the salad and gently mix.

Nutrition Information:

Exchanges/Choices: 1 Carbohydrate, 2 Lean Meat, 1 1/2 Fat

Calories: 205

Total Fat: 11 g

Saturated Fat: 1.7 g

Trans Fat: 0 g

Cholesterol: 30 mg

Sodium: 445 mg

Potassium: 320 mg

Total Carbohydrate: 12 g

Dietary Fiber: 3 g

Sugars: 6 g

Protein: 16 g

Phosphorus: 175 mg

 

Classic Spinach Pie

Classic Spinach Pie

 Yields 24 2 x 2 inch square pieces

Preparation Time: 25 minutes

Cook Time: 36 minutes

One of my fondest memories is my Mom, sister, and I preparing spinach pie every Sunday. Back then, we didn’t hesitate to add loads of butter, but now know that’s not necessary, as cooking spray does the trick. The freezer section provides the most important ingredients; all you need to do is add some love.

Ingredients

olive oil flavored cooking spray

2 teaspoons olive oil

1 large onion, chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

3 (16-ounce) packages frozen chopped spinach, thawed, drained, and squeezed dry

3/4 cup crumbled feta cheese

2 eggs, beaten

1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 (1-pound) box frozen filo dough, thawed according to package directions

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Coat a 9 ×13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Set aside. Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and sauté for 5–6 minutes.

2. Add the onions and garlic to a large mixing bowl. Add in the spinach, feta cheese, eggs, salt and pepper.

3. Unroll the filo dough. Using one sheet at a time while keeping the remaining filo dough stack under a clean towel, carefully lift 1 filo dough sheet into the prepared pan and spray with the cooking spray, taking care to coat the edges of the filo, but don’t overspray. Repeat this 12 times with 12 sheets of filo stacked on top of each other fitted into the pan. Spread the spinach mixture on top of the 12 sheets. Repeat with another 12 sheets stacked on top of each other, spraying each time with butter flavored cooking spray.

4. Using a sharp knife, cut through the filo into 2 × 2 inch squares going about 1/3 down into the filo (do not cut all the way through to the bottom of the pan). Cover the pan with foil and bake for 25 minutes.

5. Remove the cover and continue to bake the spinach pie until the top is well browned and the filo dough looks crisp and flaky.

Nutrition Information

Exchanges/Choices: 1 Starch, 1/2 Fat

Calories: 100

Total Fat: 3 g

Saturated Fat: 1 g

Trans Fat: 0 g

Cholesterol : 20 mg

Sodium: 200 mg

Potassium: 170 mg

Total Carbohydrate: 16 g

Dietary Fiber: 2 g

Sugars: 1 g

Protein: 4 g

Phosphorus: 65 mg

What are your favorite fall foods?

 

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