Jul 23, 2014

Steak & Caramelized Onions with Arugula and Quinoa Penne

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Grilled steak with sweet balsamic caramelized onions are tossed with baby arugula, gluten-free quinoa, amaranth and brown rice penne pasta (you can use whatever pasta you like) topped with fresh shaved parmesan – I'm a sucker for a good steak salad, and this one is AWESOME!

Packed with protein, it's made with lean sirloin, which I cooked on the grill pan, but you can cook it outside on the grill, or in a large skillet. The gluten-free quinoa pasta was from Tru Roots, it cooks al dente and tastes just like regular pasta, I was very impressed! You can also make this with whole wheat pasta if you don't have a gluten allergy, or even toss this with farro instead.

Jul 20, 2014

Lentil Salad

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This healthy salad is made with cooked lentils and diced fresh diced carrots, celery, bell pepper, onion, parsley and lemon juice – perfect to make ahead for lunch for the week as the flavors only get better overnight. It's also vegan, high in fiber, protein and only about 100 calories per serving.


I've LOVE making my chicken and lentil soup, but I was never really a fan of using lentils in a salad (I'm a picky legume eater). But the other day I bought a small lentil salad at my local health food store to try and take to the beach and really enjoyed it, but I paid twelve dollars a pound for it (for a small container). For that price I'll make it myself for a fraction of what I paid, plus this makes a lot so you'll get a few meals out of it. If you're not a fan of lentils, you can use any legume such as white beans, chick peas or a mix.


Jul 16, 2014

Mediterranean Boneless Pork Chops

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Talk about a delicious weeknight summer meal! These thin and lean thin pork chops are pan seared and served topped with julienned summer squash, roasted tomatoes, lemon juice, olives and Feta cheese. So much flavor and color in this dish!


And it's hard to believe how light this is! One serving is two thin chops with a generous amount of vegetables on top for only 230 calories (or 6 Weight Watcher Points) I had to actually double check that to see if I was wrong because it sounded too good to be true. If you have a spiralizer, you can use that instead of a mandolin to cut the zucchini and squash.



Jul 15, 2014

Crock Pot Minestrone Soup

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By far the BEST Minestrone soup recipe you'll ever try!

This is by far the best recipe you'll ever try for Minestrone soup – a classic, hearty Italian soup with tomatoes, white beans, vegetables and pasta. You can use Swiss chard or baby kale instead of spinach if you wish and you can omit the pasta if you don't want the carbs – honestly you won't miss it with everything else in this soup.

It's just my preference, but I like to puree the beans in this soup, it thickens it and you don't even know they are in there (great for picky eaters). What makes this soup extra special, is using the rind from a wedge of parmesan or Romano cheese. I always stash them in my freezer just for soups, if you don't have one toss some grated cheese into the soup while it's cooking.

This is an old recipe I've been making for a very long time! Originally I shared this as a slow cooker recipe in 2009, which is super convenient when you are working all day and want to come home to a cooked meal. But I also love making this on the stove, so I've updated the directions for both crock pot AND stove top.

This is also great with mini turkey meatballs, or even some sauteed crumbled turkey sausage. To keep the pasta al dente, I cook the pasta separate and add it to each bowl when I serve it, rather than throwing it in the soup which winds up soaking up all the broth.


Hope you enjoy!

Jul 13, 2014

Three Cheese Zucchini Stuffed Lasagna Rolls

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These EASY lasagna rolls are stuffed with zucchini, ricotta and Parmesan, then topped with marinara and mozzarella cheese – delicious, kid friendly and perfect if you want to feed a crowd. You can make them a day ahead and refrigerate, or if you like to cook for the month, these are also freezer-friendly. Double it up, or bring an extra to a friend in need, they'll thank you! (BTW, they're vegetarian also, perfect for Meatless Mondays!)


By now I'm sure you figured out I LOVE zucchini! I just shared a roundup of 35 Skinny Zucchini Recipes, so here's number 36! I've been craving lasagna rolls lately which I love making instead of traditional lasagna, they are so much easier to make and they're great for portion control. My girlfriend brought me zucchini from her garden so I thought I'd try out this zucchini version instead of my usual spinach filling. These turned out SO good, and now I have yet another way to eat zucchini.

To freeze, you can choose to individually freeze them in ziplock bags or freeze them as a finished dish ready for the oven.  You can also freeze anything you've baked that you can't finish. Click here for more details on how to freeze lasagna rolls.


I served these with sauteed summer julienned vegetables on the side (I used my spiralizer) and it was the perfect meal!


Jul 10, 2014

35 Skinny Zucchini Recipes

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Here's an easy challenge anyone can do! Eat a SUPERFOOD everyday! Now, I'm not saying to run to the health food store and spend tons of money. A superfood is one that’s loaded with nutrition and significantly helps boost your health in some way, says the Skinnytaste dietitian Heather K. Jones. Zucchini is definitely a super (good-for-you) food. It’s low in calories (a medium zucchini has around just 30 calories) and chock full of heart-healthy nutrients including Vitamins C and A, potassium, folate, and fiber. Zucchini is also packed with the vision-promoting antioxidants beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin. 

So now that we know zucchini is so good for you, here's 35 mouthwatering Skinny Zucchini Recipes just for you!

1. Grilled Chicken and Zucchini Skewers are perfect as an appetizer if you're having a backyard bash this summer, or you can turn it into a meal any night of the week served with rice, salad or more vegetables...
 

2. Sauteed Baby Zucchini – a simple side dish ready in under 6 minutes and great with just about everything...


3. Serve these Baked Zucchini Sticks as an appetizer or as a side dish. They are healthy and low in points and guiltlessly delicious... 


4. Zucchini Pizza Bites are the perfect way to use up all the zucchini in your garden and satisfy your craving for pizza in a low-carb way...


5. Getting your family to eat their veggies can often be difficult. But not with these kid-friendly Zucchini Tots. They make a great side dish for breakfast or dinner...



6. When making these Raw Zucchini Carpaccio, you'll want to use a mandolin or potato peeler to thinly slice the zucchini...


7. Cream of Zucchini Soup has only FIVE ingredients and is amazing...


8. Savory Zucchini Asiago Tomato Scones almost smell like pizza when they come out of the oven...


9. Crust-less Summer Zucchini makes a wonderful side dish to any meal or serve it at a potluck or brunch..


10. Caramelized Onion, Red Pepper and Zucchini Frittata is perfect for breakfast, lunch or dinner...


11. Zucchini Casserole is a great side dish and perfect for all zucchini lovers...


12. Tomato and Zucchini Frittata is perfect for meatless Mondays, gluten free, clean eating and low-carb diets...




13. For a summer spin on taco night, try these Taco Stuffed Zucchini Boatsstuffed with ground turkey, seasoned with cumin and topped with a blend of Mexican cheese – cheesy goodness...



14. A fun twist on a Mexican favorite are these Chicken Enchilada Stuffed Zucchini.   Serve these with cilantro lime rice as a side dish and you'll have yourself a fiesta...


15. Sausage Stuffed Zucchini Boats – Summer zucchini hollowed out and stuffed with lean Italian sausage, then topped with marinara and cheese, my favorite!


16. Sauteed Zucchini with Plum Tomatoes is a simple side dish recipe but a great way to use your summer garden zucchini and tomatoes...


17. Skillet Mexican Zucchini is a delicious recipe with a little bit of a Mexican kick from the jalapeno then topped with melted queso blanco. It's also easy and quick...


18. Zucchini, yellow squash and carrots cut into spaghetti like strands and sauteed with garlic and oil make this recipe for Sauteed Julienned Summer Vegetables a perfect summer meal...




20. Spicy shrimp with garlic, zucchini noodles, tomatoes and a squeeze of lemon juice make these Zucchini Noodles with Lemon Garlic Spicy Shrimp delicious...


21. Zoodles and Meatballs for a lighter carb alternative to spaghetti and meatballs!


22. Vegan Eggplant Meatballs are perfect for vegans, or if you just want to incorporate more veggies into your meals.


23. Skinny Meatloaf Cupcakes with Mashed Potato Frosting are another way to get your kids to eat zucchini...


24. The perfect meatless meal using summer fresh zucchini and tomatoes is Angel Hair with Zucchini...


25. Shrimp and Zucchini with Bowties is a light pasta dish loaded with shrimp, zucchini and fresh tomatoes...


26. The next time you need to bring a macaroni salad to a gathering, why not try my Summer Macaroni Salad with Tomatoes and Zucchini.  It's loaded with great flavor but doesn't have all the calories and fat as your traditional macaroni salad...


27. Zucchini Lasagna – Replace the lasagna noodles with thin sliced zucchini and you have a delicious, lower carb (gluten-free) lasagna that's loaded with vegetables, and you won't miss the pasta.  


28. Chicken Rollatini Stuffed with Zucchini and Mozzarella is a wonderful way to use zucchini...


29. Naked Turkey Bruschetta Burgers are made with zucchini and topped with a summer garden tomato bruschetta topping over a bed of baby arugula – no bun required...


30. If you're running out of ideas of how to use up all your garden zucchini, you'll welcome these Greek Turkey Meatballs – a great way to add extra fiber to your diet...


31. Want your kids to eat more vegetables?  Try these Turkey Zucchini Burgers, they won't even know there's zucchini in the mix!


32. Zucchini Pancakes are similar to potato pancakes only with less carbs and are a perfect side dish for grilled chicken or meat...


33. On busy days, let your crock pot cook for you with my recipe for classic Crock Pot Minestrone Soup. Don't forget to add zucchini along with the other summer vegetables...


34. Another way to get your kids to eat zucchini is with this delicious recipe for Low Fat Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread...


35. A delicious way to enjoy zucchini is with this recipe for Pineapple Zucchini Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting...