Holiday Challenge 2012 Recipes

By December 7, 2012Articles, Mind & Body
  • Ponche de Frutas (Fruit Punch from Guatemala)

    Posted by: Alexandra Garcia-Granados
    Recipe by: growingupbilingual.com

    1 box of raisins, soaked in water
    1/2 cup dried apricots
    ½ cup dried prunes
    1/2 cup dried apples, and cubed apple pieces
    1 pineapple
    2 sticks cinnamon
    1 teaspoon allspice
    1 teaspoon cloves
    1 orange peel
    Sugar to taste
    10 cups water
    ¼ cup rum (optional)
    1 small papaya or dried papaya (optional)

    Chop the dried fruit, finely chop the pineapple.
    Put all fruit in a pot and cover with water, add spices, bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer covered for 45 minutes.
    Remove from heat and add the sugar to taste (depends on ripeness of fruit).
    Fill cups with punch and fruit, serve with a spoon to eat fruit, add rum if desired.

  • Chocolate Peppermint Covered Pretzels

    Posted by: Elizabeth Jenkins
    Recipe by: Pepper Weinglass

    1- 12 oz. bag Hesheys special dark chocolate chips
    32 Rold Gold tiny twist pretzels
    1 cup crushed Peppermint candies

    Crush peppermint candies in food processor put in small bowl and set aside.
    Melt chocolate in microwave in small bowl.
    Dip pretzel in chocolate and let extra dip off.
    Sprinkle crushed peppermint on top.
    Lay on parchment paper lined cookie sheets.
    Refrigerate until set.

  • Sweet Potato, Pecan & Spinach Salad

    Posted by: Sarah Coombs
    Recipe by: Sarah Coombs

    Roasted sweet potatoes (bite size)
    Quartered pecans
    Red onion, diced

    Peel and cut the sweet potatoes and sprinkle them with olive oil, salt, and pepper and place them in a preheated 375 degree oven for about 45 minutes.
    Once they are done and cooled you can toss them in the salad (composed of spinach, chopped onion, pecans, and any additional toppings desired (grape tomatoes go great in this too, as does corn and peppers).
    Sprinkle the salad with olive oil and squeeze of lemon.
    Sprinkle with salt and peeper.

  • Fish Stew

    Posted by: Linda Abrahams
    Recipe by: Combination of fish stew recipes from Simply Delicious and Food Network

    Heat 5 tbsp oil oil in a dutch oven on medium heat.
    Add 1 cup chopped white onion and a few cloves of chopped garlic.
    When soft, add 1 large chopped tomato.
    When soft, add some parsley and simmer together for a minute.
    Add 1 bottle of clam juice or fish stock, 2 tsp tomato paste and 1/2 cup white wine.
    Cut into chunks: 1 1/2 lb of cod, or another white fish.
    Add 10 large shrimp (peeled and de-veined) and 1/2 lb scallops.
    Season seafood with smoked paprika, creole seasonings and white pepper.
    Turn heat down and simmer a few minutes until fish is cooked about 10 minutes.
    Serve with a crusty bread. (I like to make garlic bread with this dish.)

  • Pumpkin Baked Oatmeal

    Posted by: Kristin Canan
    Recipe by: Chocolate Covered Katie Blog

    1/2 cup rolled oats
    1/4 tsp vanilla
    1/2 tsp cinnamon
    1/2 tsp of nutmeg (or use pumpkin pie spice instead of both spices)
    Sweetener, such as 1 to 1 1/2 tbsp of maple syrup or 1 to 1 1/2 packs of Stevia
    1/4 cup canned pumpkin
    1/4 cup milk of your choice
    1/8 tsp salt
    Optional: raisins, brown sugar or walnuts for topping

    Preheat oven to 380 degrees. Combine ingredients and pour into a greased 1 cup ramekin. Bake for 20 min or more. Then set your oven to broil and cook for 3 more minutes, or until top reaches desired ‘crispiness’.

  • Mini Brie & Apple Quiches

    Posted by: Vaunette Coache
    Recipe by: eatingwell.com

    30 mini phyllo shells (two 1.9-ounce packages; see Note)
    1/2 medium apple, peeled and finely diced
    5 large eggs
    1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    Pinch of freshly ground pepper
    Pinch of ground nutmeg
    4 ounces Brie (1/2 small wheel), cut into 30 squares

    Preheat oven to 350°F.
    Arrange phyllo shells on a large parchment-lined baking sheet.
    Divide apple among the shells.
    Whisk eggs, mustard, salt, pepper and nutmeg in a large measuring cup.
    Pour the egg mixture over the apple (do not overfill the shells).
    Place a Brie square in each shell.
    Bake until the egg is set, the Brie is melted and the phyllo is starting to brown around the edges, about 15 minutes.
    Let cool slightly before serving.

    Per quiche : 39 Calories; 2 g Fat; 1 g Sat; 1 g Mono; 39 mg Cholesterol; 3 g Carbohydrates; 2 g Protein; 0 g Fiber; 65 mg Sodium; 20 mg Potassium; 0 Carbohydrate Serving.

    Mini phyllo shells, or fillo, are available in the freezer section near other frozen appetizers. They do not need to be defrosted before filling and baking.

  • Roasted Seasonal Vegetables

    Posted by: Heng L. Foong
    Recipe by: Heng’s Kitchen

    Use any vegetable that can be baked. I recommend anything in season and like to create a colorful dish that includes:
    Brussels sprout (keep small ones whole and cut in half the larger ones)
    Red bell pepper
    Sweet potato and/or butternut squash
    Sweet onions (sliced)
    Mushrooms (okay to keep whole)
    Garlic (I use two whole heads garlic as I love them), separated into cloves and peeled

    Cut into bite size (but not too small) pieces.
    Toss everything in a mixing bowl.
    Drizzle olive oil to nicely coat the veggies (a good estimate is 2-3 tablespoons).
    Season with rice vinegar (1-2 tablespoons), black pepper and a dash of sea salt.
    Mix nicely (I use my hands) and pour the vegetables onto a foil lined baking tray.
    Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes.
    Remove from the oven and stir (an opportunity for an even roast).
    Return to the oven and bake for another 20 minutes.

  • Yolanda’s “Colombian” Flan

    Posted by: Mark Casey
    Recipe by: Michelle (Chef #632056)

    4 -5 tablespoons sugar
    1 (14 ounce) cans sweetened condensed milk
    4 eggs
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
    Melt the sugar in a non-stick loaf pan over low heat, sliding the pan around constantly until the sugar is liquid but not burned. Alternatively you could melt the sugar in a separate pot and pour into a loaf pan.
    Combine the can of condensed milk, 3/4 of the same can of water, eggs and vanilla extract in a blender and blend until smooth.
    Pour this mixture over the melted sugar in the loaf pan.
    Prepare a bano de maria (bain marie) by placing the loaf pan into a casserole dish and fill the casserole dish with water around the loaf pan until the water is about half-way up the loaf pan.
    Place casserole dish with water and loaf pan steady in the middle into the oven on the center rack and bake for about 1 hour.
    Flan is done when you insert a knife into the center and it comes out clean.
    After removing, take the loaf pan out of the hot water and place in refrigerator for 5 hours or overnight until completely cooled.
    To serve, place a dish over the pan and hold together while flipping upside down. Flan should slide right out once it’s cool enough.

  • Blueberry-Almond French Toast Bake

    Posted by: Marisa Phillips
    Recipe by: Ellie Krieger, Food Network

    Cooking spray
    1 whole wheat baguette 18 inches long and cut into 1 inch cubes
    2 cups of low fat milk 1%
    8 large eggs
    8 large egg whites
    1/3 cup of pure maple syrup
    1tsp of vanilla extract
    1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
    2 c fresh blueberries
    1/3 c sliced almonds
    2 tablespoons dark brown sugar

    Spray a 9×13 inch baking dish with cooking spray.
    Arrange the bread in a single layer in baking pan.
    Whisk together the milk, eggs, egg whites, maple syrup, vanilla, and cinnamon.
    Pour the egg mixture over the bread.
    Scatter blueberries on top.
    Sprinkle with brown sugar and almonds.
    Cover and refrigerate for at least 8 hours or overnight.
    When ready to cook, preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
    Uncover and bake for 50 to 60 minutes, serve hot.

    Some of my pointers: place the dish on an baking pan in the fridge, sometimes some of the egg mixture likes to spill out. When you are cooking it, check on it every so often, if it looks like it is getting crispy on top, cover with foil. We pour more maple syrup on it when it is on our plates.

  • Kicken Sweet Potato

    Posted by: Leslie Podliska
    Recipe by: a friend

    Baked Sweet Potatoes
    Black Bean Salsa
    Plain NF Greek Yogurt
    Shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese (if you’re feeling naughty)

    Top sweet potatoes with other ingredients and enjoy! Super easy and yummy!

  • Yummy Salad Dressing

    Posted by: Kelly Martell
    Recipe by: Weight Watchers

    1 ripe avocado, cubed
    1/2 cup plain nonfat yogurt
    1 clove garlic
    1 Tbsp. minced red onion
    1 Tbsp. lemon juice
    2 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh parsley

    Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and mix until smooth.
    Chill, then toss with chosen salad ingredients just before serving.
    Makes 4 servings.

    Follow quantities as written for a thicker dressing that also makes a terrific dip. Add more yogurt for a creamier texture that makes it a little easier to toss.

  • Insanely Easy Vegetarian Chili

    Posted by: Catharine Yates
    Recipe by: Tian the Baker, allrecipes.com

    1 T. vegetable oil
    1 c. chopped green bell pepper
    1 1/2 c. chopped fresh mushrooms
    1 T. ground cumin
    1 c. chopped onions
    1 c. chopped red bell pepper
    1 (28oz.) can whole peeled tomatoes with liquid
    chopped 1 1/2 t. dried oregano
    3/4 c. chopped carrots
    3/4 c. chopped celery
    1 (19oz) can kidney beans with liquid (sometimes sub black beans)
    1 1/2 t. dried basil
    3 cloves garlic, minced
    1 T. chili powder
    1 (11oz) can whole kernel corn, undrained

    Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat.
    Saute onions,carrots, and garlic until tender.
    Stir in green pepper, red pepper, celery, and chili powder.
    Cook until vegetables are tender (about 6 minutes).
    Stir in mushrooms and cook 4 minutes.
    Stir in tomatoes, kidney beans and corn.
    Season with cumin, oregano and basil.
    Bring to a boil and reduce heat to medoum.
    Cover and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

  • Fruit Salad

    Posted by: Angela Knight
    Recipe by: Knight Family

    1 can (20 oz) crushed pineapple
    2 apples – cut into small chunks
    2 oranges – cut into small chunks
    2 bananas – quarter the banana lengthwise then cut small slices
    1/2 lb grapes – quartered
    1/8 cup sugar

    Add the ingredients in the order listed. The trick to this fruit salad is to cut everything very small so it all mixes together and you can’t separate one fruit from the other. It takes a little time to make because you cut everything so small, but it is so good. Don’t try to take a shortcut and make bigger pieces, it just isn’t the same!

  • Salsa (Crockpot) Chicken

    Posted by: Jolene Melton
    Recipe by: Pinterest

    4 chicken breasts (frozen work great)
    1 pkg taco seasoning (regular or spicy)
    1 can cream of mushroom
    1 cup salsa

    Put the chicken in the crock pot and cover with the taco seasoning.
    Mix the cream of mushroom and salsa together then spread over top of the chicken.
    Let cook for about 6 hours.

    You can eat the chicken breast over brown rice. My favorite is to shred it and eat it on a whole wheat taco shell with lettuce/tomato/fage (or sour cream). This is very quick, easy, and yummy.

  • Eggnog

    Posted by: Kelly Martell
    Recipe by: P90X

    4 cups skim milk
    1-1/2 cups evaporated skim milk
    4 eggs
    1/2 cup sugar
    1 tsp. vanilla extract
    Ground nutmeg (to taste)

    Chill 3/4 cup of the evaporated milk in the freezer for 30 minutes (to make it easier to whip).
    In a saucepan over medium heat, whisk together skim milk, remaining 3/4 cup evaporated milk, eggs, and sugar.
    Rinse whisk in hot water to ensure that no bacteria from the egg remain.
    Using a wooden spoon, stir mixture on stove constantly for 10 minutes until slightly thickened. (Do NOT boil.)
    Remove pan from heat; transfer mixture to a large bowl and let cool for several minutes.
    Place chilled evaporated milk and vanilla in a small bowl and whisk together until slightly thickened. (If you prefer, you can substitute 1/2 cup of rum or brandy for vanilla.)
    Add contents of this bowl to egg mixture and whisk for a few more minutes, until frothy.
    Refrigerate for 4 to 24 hours.
    If eggs begin to coagulate, strain mixture to remove solids.
    Top with ground nutmeg before serving.

    Makes 12 servings.
    Preparation Time: 20 minutes (mixing), 30 minutes (prechilling), 4 hours to 24 hours (chilling).

    This is a very yummy drink. I’ve also used Rum Extract (or you could use the real thing) instead of Vanilla Extract.

  • Red Pepper Hummus

    Posted by: Michelle Smith
    Recipe by: Michelle Smith

    2 cans chick peas- rinsed;
    1-2 lemons;
    2 tbsp Tahini;
    2 tbsp (or more) of ground red pepper;
    Up to 3/4 can of water depending on texture;
    2 cloves of fresh garlic.

    Combine in Food Processor or Vitamix until the desired consistency is reached.

  • Dad’s Candy

    Posted by: Jim Sellmer
    Recipe by: Hershey Cocoa Tin circa 1960’s (We know it as Dad’s Candy.)

    3 cups sugar
    1.5 cups milk
    2 tablespoons Hershey Cocoa
    Dash of salt (1/4 teaspoon)
    Stick of butter
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    Candy thermometer
    A wire star for the stove burner also is helpful to raise the pan of the burner

    Mix sugar, milk, and cocoa into pan.
    Heat to 242 degrees (softball on the candy thermometer) stirring continuously. It can get quite hot and can bubble and splatter while stirring as it heats to softball. It will hurt tender hands when it splatters. Let it stay at 242 degrees for a couple of minutes.
    Take a small amount on a spoon and drop it into a clear glass of cold water. It should ball up.
    Cut the stick of butter in half.
    Butter a platter with one half to assure a nice thin layer where the candy will setup on the platter. We used a shallow turkey platter dedicated for our candy. This allowed for candy depth of various sizes from thin on the edge to about 1/4 inch deep in the center.
    Take the other half stick of butter and drop it in the pan to melt, stir it in.
    Allow the mix to cool slowly. When the mix reaches 100 to 150 degrees on the thermometer add 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract and stir it in.
    Pour the mix into the platter and allow to cool.
    Once cool and solid score the candy two directions into bite size pieces. The shallower outer edge cools first so small pieces are available.

    This is not a healthy treat by any means, but with our parents gone it is a treat that my siblings and I look forward to making and sharing when we see each other at Christmas. We have all had lessons from dad in the process. My older brother is making it this year.

    Much care must be taken to get the mix to softball on the thermometer and holding it there. Not long enough at softball and the mix will not harden in the platter and spoons will be the method of consumption. This usually happens because the maker cannot handle the heat. Allowed to go over softball to hardball and the mix will be hard as a rock when it cools. This usually happens because stirring is stopped and the mix heats up again due to tender hands. We have all learned the hard way which has also made memories.

    Enjoy, but limit in your intake although sometimes the gluttonous kid comes out and we have over indulged. It can be addictive. Note: this is not fudge.

  • Cranberry Pear Sauce

    Posted by: Kathie Golder
    Recipe by: Nutshell Stores Facebook Page – Ann’s Favorite Recipes

    12 oz fresh or frozen cranberries
    2 ripe pears, peeled and cored, cubed small
    1/2 cup honey
    1 cup water

    Bring all ingredients to a boil on high heat in a medium sauce pan. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool before refrigerating. Serve cold or at room temperature. Makes 3 ¼ cups.

  • Pumpkin Pie Muffins

    Posted by: Trieste Van Wyngarden
    Recipe by: Dashing Dish

    For the Cupcakes:
    1 box yellow cake mix
    5 egg whites
    1/3 cup plain fat free yogurt
    1 cup water
    1 1/2 tbs rum extract
    1/2 tsp cinnamon
    1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice

    1 cup cold fat free milk (or milk alternative)
    1 small package sugar free vanilla pudding mix
    1 (8oz) container fat free cool whip
    1/2 tbs rum extract
    1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice (or a pinch of nutmeg)
    Optional: cinnamon for dusting

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
    Prepare 2 (12 count) muffin tins with cupcake liners, or spray with non-stick cooking spray.
    In a large bowl, mix together all of the ingredients for the cake, and whisk until batter is smooth.
    Divide the batter evenly between the 24 muffin tins.
    Bake in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean.
    Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together the milk and pudding mix until smooth.
    Fold in cool whip, rum extract, and pumpkin pie spice.
    Chill frosting in the fridge until the cupcakes are completely cooled, and ready to be frosted.
    When cupcakes are ready to frost, place whipped frosting in a large ziplock bag.
    Cut the tip off a corner of the bag, and squeeze frosting down to the cut corner.
    Squeeze frosting out while making a swirling/upward motion and lift at the peak!
    Dust with cinnamon if desired.
    Store cupcakes in fridge until ready to serve.

    Servings: 24 cupcakes Calories: 115 calories per cupcake (includes frosting!)

  • My Mother-In-Law’s Brisket

    Posted by: Lori Deyoe
    Recipe by: my mother-in-law

    3 – 4 lb. brisket
    1 tsp. onion salt
    2 T. liquid smoke
    1 1/2 salt 1 tsp. garlic salt
    2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce 2 tsp. celery seed
    2 tsp. pepper

    Mix all ingredients above. Cover both sides of brisket with mix. Place brisket, wrapped in foil, in pain and marinate in fridge overnight. Cook at 300 degrees for 3-4 hours.

  • Low Fat Chocolate Dessert

    Posted by: Marilyn Siddle
    Recipe by: Jello

    Mix two cups of skim milk with a big box of jello sugar free/fat free chocolate pudding. Mix for 2 minutes and put in a low fat graham cracker or chocolate pie crust. Refrigerate for 2 hours.

    Delicious, low fat, chocolate dessert that won’ create any guilty feelings about indulging!

  • Healthy Cookies

    Posted by: Nelson Prater
    Recipe by: Nelson Prater

    Can cookies really be healthy? Of course! I worked on this recipe with many batches until I finally got it right.

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
    Line baking sheets with parchment — I use half-sheet bun pans with silicone liners. (Greasing them would not be appropriate for these healthy cookies.)

    Have available, separately:
    1/2 cup chopped walnuts
    1/2 cup raisins or dried cranberries
    1 1/2 cups oats
    Small bowl with about 1/2 cup sugar in it

    In your next to largest bowl, dry whisk together:
    1 1/4 cups whole wheat flour
    1/4 cup ground flax seed
    1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
    1/4 teaspoon sea salt
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda

    In your largest bowl, whisk together:
    1 mini single serving cup natural applesauce (1 from a 6-pack)
    1/4 cup canola oil
    1 egg
    1/2 cup sugar
    1/2 cup brown sugar
    1 teaspoon vanilla

    Stir flour mixture into applesauce mixture.
    Stir in oats.
    Fold in raisins and walnuts.
    Scoop and roll into walnut-sized balls.
    Roll in sugar.
    Place on cookie sheet.
    Press down some. (These don’t spread a lot, so I can get 16 on a cookie sheet instead of 12.)

    I baked mine 9 1/2 minutes until just starting to brown. Allow to cool for about 3 minutes on pan, then remove to wire racks to cool completely.

  • Wild Rice with Caramelized Shallots, Cranberries and Pecans

    Posted by: Lindsay Bacher
    Recipe by: Jenna Weber – Eat Live Run

    2 cups wild rice
    4 cups water
    1 tsp salt
    3/4 cup pecans, roughly chopped
    2 shallots, thinly sliced
    3/4 cup dried cranberries + 3 cups boiling water
    2 tbsp olive oil
    2 tbsp brown sugar

    Combine the rice, water and salt in a large pot and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to a simmer and cook for about an hour or until all the water has been absorbed.
    Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 and place pecans on a tin foil-covered sheet tray.
    Toast for five minutes, until fragrant and toasty (but watch so you don’t burn them!).
    Combine dried cranberries and boiling water and let plump for 10 minutes. Drain water.
    Heat olive oil over medium high heat and add thinly sliced shallots.
    Saute for 10 minutes over medium low heat and then add brown sugar and continue sauteing for another three minutes, stirring constantly.
    After rice has cooked, fluff with a fork and remove from heat.
    Add shallots, cranberries and toasted pecans.
    Season with salt to taste and serve.

    Time: 1.5 hours. Serves 8.

  • Cranberry Banana Bread

    Posted by: Sonya Carney
    Recipe by: Nick Jr. Magazine

    1 egg 1/2 cup brown sugar
    1 teaspoon grated orange zest
    1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
    1 cup mashed ripe bananas (about 2 medium bananas)
    1 1/2 cups flour
    1/4 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 teaspoon baking powder
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/4 cup melted butter
    1/2 cup fresh or frozen cranberries, roughly chopped

    Heat oven to 350 degrees.
    Spray an 8″ x 4″ loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray.
    Cream the egg, brown sugar, orange zest and cinnamon in a large mixing bowl with electric mixer set on medium-low or by hand with a wooden spoon or spatula.
    Add the mashed bananas.
    Combine the dry ingredients.
    Add to egg/sugar/banana mixture.
    Pour butter into the batter and fold it in with a rubber spatula.
    Fold in the cranberries.
    Do not over mix.
    Pour batter into prepared loaf pan.
    Bake for about an hour or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

    Note: Makes 12 full-size slices. I usually cut the slices in half to serve, which makes them half the calories!

  • Guatemalan Icebox Cookies

    Posted by: Alexandra Garcia-Granados
    Recipe by: food.com (by papagayita)

    1 1/2 cups flour
    3/4 cup cocoa powder
    3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
    1/4 teaspoon cayenne
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
    1 cup sugar
    1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
    1 egg
    12 tablespoons unsalted butter
    wax paper

    Mix egg, vanilla and sugar on medium speed until mixture is white and creamy.
    Using cold butter, cut into small pieces and add to mixture stirring well.
    Mix together the dry ingredients in a separate bowl and slowly add to egg/sugar/butter mixture being careful to not over mix.
    Make half of mixture into 8 inch log on wax paper and roll paper around it. Repeat with other half of mixture. Place in freezer for at least 4 hours, ideally 8 hours.
    Remove from freezer, preheat oven to 350°F.
    Slice into 1/4 inch thick rounds.
    Place on greased cookie sheet 1 inch apart.
    Bake at 350°F for 8-12 minutes or until small cracks appear on tops.
    Should have between 2-3 dozen cookies, depending on thickness.

  • Winter Salad

    Posted by: Kim Alvares
    Recipe by: Inspired by Green Kitchen Stories blog

    1 cup quinoa
    1 small butternut squash (preferably organic)
    1 cup walnuts, roughly chopped and toasted
    1 large Hass avocado, diced
    1 small head of broccoli, cut into bite-size florets
    1 cup red grapes, cut into quarters if large, or halves if small (if imported grapes, preferably organic)
    1 pomegranate, seeds

    Herb Dressing
    1 handful basil, finely chopped
    1 handful Italian parsley, finely chopped
    2-3 cloves garlic, very finely chopped
    1/2 lemon, juice
    3-4 tbsp good quality extra virgin olive oil
    salt & pepper

    Prepare the butternut by trimming off the top and bottom and cutting it in half crosswise and lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds and remove the tough peel with a peeler. Cut into 1 x 1-inch (2 x 2 cm) cubes. Place on an oven tray. Drizzle with a little olive oil and sea salt and peper. Bake on 400 F° (200°C) for 20-30 minutes or until soft and slightly brown on the edges. About halfway through, gives the squash a good stir to all even cooking all around. Remove from the oven and let cool completely.

    Rinse the quinoa in a fine mesh straining under running water, then place in a small saucepan with 2 cups water. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, cover and let gently simmer for 15-20 minutes or until fluffy and water has evaporated. Fluff with a fork.

    For the broccoli, prepare an ice-bath and set aside. Bring a medium pot of water to a boil and salt it. Boil the broccoli just long enough to take the raw edge off – about 10-15 seconds. Drain immediately and immerse the broccoli in an ice-bath.

    Prepare the avocados, grapes, and pomegranate seeds and dressing. Place the cooked quinoa in a large bowl, add the herb dressing and gently mix to make sure all the quinoa is coated with the dressing. Add the remaining ingredients to the quinoa mixture and gently fold to combine. Serve!

  • Healthy Pumpkin Casserole

    Posted by: Nicole Lalumiere
    Recipe by: Nicole Lalumiere

    1 can pureed pumpkin (you can use fresh pumpkin or squash if you have it)
    3/4 cup brown sugar (you can use Splenda to save calories)
    2/3 cup corn starch
    2 t pumpkin pie spice
    3-4 apples
    2 t cinnamon
    1 cup cranberries
    1 cup chopped walnuts

    Layer 1: mix pumpkin puree, 1/3 cup cornstarch, brown sugar, and pumpkin pie spice. Layer in casserole dish.
    Layer 2: slice apples and cook them with cinnamon, and a little water. You can add sugar if you’d like. When apples are soft, stir in a slurry made from the rest of the cornstarch and water. Cook until it thickens. Layer in casserole dish.
    Layer 3: top with cranberries and walnuts.

    Bake at 350 F for about half an hour, or until pumpkin is heated through and firms up.
    Serve as is, or add vanilla Greek yogurt of delicious breakfast.

  • Sweet and Salty Chocolate Caramel Squares

    Posted by: Frannie Thibert
    Recipe by: Edmonton Examiner

    2 cups (500 ml) Robin Hood flour
    1/2 tsp baking soda
    3/4 cup (175 ml) butter, melted
    1/2 cup (125 ml) brown sugar, packed
    1/2 cup granulated sugar
    2 eggs
    2 tsp (10 ml) vanilla extract
    10 oz (300 g) chopped Swiss milk chocolate, divided
    1 can (300 ml) Eagle Brand dulce de leche caramel flavored sauce
    1 tsp (5 ml) sea salt, divided

    Preheat oven to 350F (180C)
    Line a 9″ (23cm) square baking pan with parchment paper, overlapping the sides for easy removal.
    In a medium bowl, combine four and baking soda.
    In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugars until just combined.
    Add eggs and vanilla and mix until smooth.
    Add flour and baking soda and mis on low until dough is formed. Stir in half of chocolate (150 G).
    Bring caramel flavored sauce to a boil over medium heat in a saucepan. Stir constantly, cook 5 minutes. Remove from heat.

    Divide dough in half.
    Press half into prepared pan.
    Spread thickened caramel flavored sauce over dough.
    Sprinkle with 1/2 tsp (2 ml) sea salt.
    Drop remaining dough over caramel flavored sauce and spread until covered.
    Bake 25 – 30 minutes or until light golden brown.

    Melt reserved chocolate (150 g) and pour evenly on top of bars.
    Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 tsp (2 ml) sea salt.
    Let cool.
    Cut into squares.

    Makes: 36 squares
    Freezing: Excellent

  • Apple, Pear and Walnut Salad

    Posted by: Julie Carroll
    Recipe by: Based on recipe courtesy Sunny Anderson, 2008 on Food Network

    Great side dish, dessert, breakfast treat after an early morning run – whenever! It’s a pretty dish with colors that complement a holiday feast or brighten a small meal.

    2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
    2 1/2 tablespoons orange juice
    1 orange, zested
    1/2 cup dried cranberries (craisins or a type of raisin)
    4 apples, preferably use 2 to 3 different kinds
    2 pears, preferably red and green
    2/3 cup walnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped
    2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
    Salt and freshly ground black pepper

    In a large bowl whisk together vinegar, orange juice, zest, and raisins. Core and cube apples and pears. Add fruit and walnuts to a bowl and drizzle with oil. Toss well to combine. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper. Refrigerate 1 hour before serving.

  • K & G’s White Bean Chicken Chili

    Posted by: Laura Irvine
    Recipe by: K & G Wellness

    48 oz. Great Northern White Beans
    1 16 oz. can low-fat chicken broth (I use 32 oz.)
    2 fresh chicken breasts, cut into small cubes
    1/2 small onion, chopped
    4 stalks celery, sliced
    1 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
    1 cup sliced baby carrots
    2 cloves garlic, crushed salt and pepper (to taste)
    chili powder (optional)

    In large crock pot add all ingredients. Cook on high for about 2 hours. Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 4 additional hours.

  • Healthy Protein Filled Dessert

    Posted by: Ruth Ravve
    Recipe by: Found it on the P90x site, but modified it a bit.

    2 scoops chocolate protein powder
    1/2 cup peanut butter (or use peanut butter powder, which has no oil and is even healthier)
    1/2 banana
    1 package silken soy
    2 tablespoons milk (I use almond milk)

    Mix all ingredients in a blender. Pour into a pie crust (I use a chocolate crust). Refrigerate for at least an hour.

    Other modifications:
    I’ve also put chocolate sprinkles or finely ground coffee on top for garnish.

  • Marinated Vegetable Salad

    Posted by: Kathy Gonzales
    Recipe by: a Weight Watcher book, I think

    1 cup broccoli florets
    1 cup cauliflower florets
    1 cup sliced carrots
    1/2 cup chopped green pepper
    1/2 thinly sliced red onion
    4 oz cooked kidney beans or canned beans
    4 oz canned, drained chick peas
    10 small green olives, pitted & sliced
    10 small black olives, pitted & sliced
    3/4 cup reduced calorie Italian Salad Dressing

    In a large bowl, combine all ingredients. Toss well and refrigerate at least 3 hours or overnight to develop flavors. You can blanch the broccoli and cauliflower florets if you like a more tender veggie.

  • Black Bean Burgers with Mango Salsa

    Posted by: Heng L. Foong
    Recipe by: Marina Delio from April 2010 Cooking Light (page 196)

    These burgers are really simple to make and yummy so I had to share. It can be made smaller and eaten as breakfast patties too. I have made it as is many times and have also substituted the shredded cheese (you can really use your favorite cheese) and spinach for the lettuce leaves. They are really great. I hope you and the elves, and our fellow runners will enjoy it.

    2 (15 oz) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
    3/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro, divided
    3/4 cup (3 oz) shredded Monterrey Jack cheese
    1/4 cup panko
    2 teaspoons ground cumin
    1 teaspoon dried oregano
    1/2 teaspoon sea salt
    1/2 medium jalapeno pepper, finely chopped
    2 large egg whites
    Cooking spray
    1 1/4 cups chopped peeled mango (about 1 medium)
    3 tablespoons chopped shallots
    1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
    1 avocado, peeled and chopped
    1 garlic clove
    6 (2 oz) whole wheat hamburger buns, lightly toasted
    6 green leaf lettuce leaves

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees
    Place black beans in a medium bowl; mash with a fork
    Stir in 1/2 cup finely chopped cilantro and the next 7 ingredients (through egg whites)
    Shape bean mixture into 6 (1/2 inch thick) parties

    Arrange patties on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray
    Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes, turning once

    Combine remaining 1/4 cup cilantro, mango, and the next 4 ingredients (through minced garlic) in a medium bowl

    Place a patty on bottom half of each hamburger bun; top each with 1 lettuce leaf, 1/3 cup salsa, and top half of bun

    Yields 6 servings

  • Kale Nachos

    Posted by: Andrea Fluegel
    Recipe by: Turnip Rock Farm CSA, Wisconsin

    A bunch of kale
    Olive Oil
    Balsamic Vinegar
    Shredded Mozzarella Cheese

    Coarsely chop kale and place on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and a little balsamic vinegar. Add some salt (optional). Bake at 350 until brown, leave in longer if you want crispier. In the last few minutes of baking sprinkle some cheese of choice on top.

    Someone might actually like Kale after they try this.

    Kale Nachos (kid-style)
    My kids love Kale Nachos and ask for it all the time. We grew kale in our garden this summer so that they could have kale nachos. However, they don’t like it as crispy as the original recipe. I just chop up the kale and put it on a cookie sheet, drizzle on olive oil, add some garlic (minced or chopped) and sprinkle on the mozzarella cheese. I bake it in the oven at 350 for about 10 minutes or until the cheese melts. The kale is a little crunchy but still green in color.

  • Sausage Kale Potato Soup

    Posted by: Andrea Fluegel
    Recipe by: Martha Stewart

    1 tablespoon olive oil
    1 onion, diced
    2 garlic cloves, minced
    1/4 teaspoon crushed red-pepper flakes
    5 waxy potatoes (1 1/2 pounds), peeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks
    3 cans (14 1/2 ounces each) reduced-sodium chicken broth
    1 bunch kale (12 ounces), stemmed and shredded
    12 ounces smoked chicken sausage, cut into 1/2-inch half moons

    In a large pot (6 to 8 quarts), heat oil over medium. Add onion and cook until soft, stirring, 2 to 3 minutes. Add garlic and red-pepper flakes; cook until fragrant, 1 minute. Add potatoes and broth; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer until potatoes are tender, 10 to 15 minutes.

    In a blender, puree half the soup. Return to pot; add kale and sausage. Simmer until kale is wilted, 10 to 15 minutes.

    I have a adapted this recipe to use the crock pot and dried kale that has been dehydrated from our garden. I put all the ingredients, onions, dried kale, red pepper flakes, potatoes, garlic, and cooked turkey sausage (instead of chicken) into the crock pot. Then I add 1.5-2 cans of reduced-sodium chicken broth and 14-20 ounces of water to reduced the amount of sodium in the soup. I set the crock pot on the low setting for 8-10 hours.

    My kids love this soup and ask for it all of the time. My fourth grade daughter wrote a short story in which the character made this soup in a cave over a fire.

  • Christmas Tree Centerpiece

    Posted by: Karen Putnam
    Recipe by: Pinterest healthy holiday recipes

    4 lettuce leaves (optional)
    8 cups broccoli & broccoli flower heads, blanched
    1 cup petite carrot
    4 -8 cups mixed vegetables, grape tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, mixed olives, Giardiniera (mixed pickled vegetables)
    1 slice carrot (cut in a star with a cookie cutter)
    1 Craft foam cone

    Place foam on platter.
    Using toothpicks secure lettuce on foam just to cover.
    Starting with the largest broccoli and broccoli flower heads place on foam starting at the base and work your way up securing with toothpicks.
    Push 1/2 the carrots randomly into the foam.
    Take the rest of the veggies cut into small pieces and fill in the empty spots and brighten up the tree. Using toothpicks only IF needed.
    Mix the remaining carrots with the juice from the carrots, remaining vegetables with the juice from the gardenia mix and place around the base of the tree.
    Top with the star.
    Serve with a dip of choice.

  • Crispy-Topped Fruit

    Posted by: Amy Brooke
    Recipe by: General Mills

    I found this on the back of a Apple Cinnamon Cheerios box and have really enjoyed it. I modified it slightly. I love it because it is super easy, uses fruit, and satisfies my sweet tooth without a ton of sugar/calories. It is suppose to have only 120 calories per serving.

    2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
    2 Tablespoons of brown sugar
    1 bag (16 oz) frozen unsweetened peaches (do not thaw)
    1 bag (12 oz) frozen unsweetened raspberries (do not thaw)

    — This is where I modified it. I use a fruit medley (raspberries, strawberries, blueberries) (12 oz). You can probably use whatever your favorite is.

    2 cups Apple Cinnamon Cheerios cereal
    1/4 cup chopped walnuts if desired
    2 tablespoons brown sugar
    2 tablespoons melted margarine
    Raisins if desired

    Heat over to 375.
    In a large bowl mix flour and 2 Tablespoons of brown sugar.
    Stir in frozen fruit until coated.
    Spread in an non-greased 8 inch square (2 quart) glass baking dish.
    Bake uncovered for 20 minutes.

    Mean while….
    Place cereal in a resealable food storage plastic bag and seal. Slightly crust with a rolling pin or can.
    In a medium bowl, mix cereal, walnuts, and 2 tablespoons brown sugar until crumbly.
    Sprinkle cereal mixture evenly over hot fruit mixture; press lightly.
    Bake 15-20 minutes longer or until golden brown and fruit is tender when pierced with a fork.
    Top with raisins
    Let stand 5-10 minutes before serving.

    I’ve eaten it both warm and cold. Warm, it reminds me of a pie or crisp.

    Makes 9 servings, about 120 calories

  • Paleo Pumpkin Pie Pudding

    Posted by: Kim Marryott Lee
    Recipe by: www.slimpickinskitchen.com

    ¼ cup shelled pecans
    1 can (13.5 oz) organic coconut milk (not lite or fat free)
    1 can (15 oz) organic pumpkin puree
    2 ½ tsp pumpkin pie spice
    2 tsp cinnamon
    3 TBSP + 2 TBSP organic agave nectar (separated)
    Pinch sea salt
    Vegan Coconut whipped topping (optional)

    Roast pecans over low heat (approx. 10-15 minutes, or until pecans begin to brown). Let cool completely.
    In large bowl, whisk together coconut milk, pumpkin puree, pumpkin pie spice, sea salt, 3 TBSP agave nectar.
    In small bowl, mix together 2 TBSP agave nectar and cinnamon.
    Chop ½ of the pecans and place in bottom of each serving dish/pudding cup/ramekin.
    Fill each pudding cup about 2/3 – 3/4 full with pumpkin mixture, then top with cinnamon mixture.
    Cover with plastic wrap and chill for at least 60 minutes.
    Uncover, top with remaining roasted pecans (and whipped topping if desired).
    Serve & enjoy!

    Nutrition (best estimates):
    Calories: 228 Fat: 12g Carbs: 22g Protein: 4g Fiber: 10g

    This also makes a great ice cream – use the pecans as a condiment on the frozen treat!

    Makes 4 servings

  • Gingerbread Cookies

    Posted by: AJ Elwood
    Recipe by: Scoville Bakery in Nauvoo, IL

    1 cup sugar
    1 cup molasses
    3/4 cup oil
    1/2 cup hot water
    2 eggs

    1 tsp baking soda
    2 tsp cinnamon
    2 tsp ginger
    1/2 tsp salt
    6-7 cups flour

    Roll dough into a ball and chill.
    Roll out using cooking spray.
    Bake at 350 for 10 min.

  • Pineapple Fluff

    Posted by: Krista Petzel
    Recipe by: Weight Watchers meeting

    1 can crushed pineapple
    1 can mandarin oranges
    1 container of Cool Whip Free
    1 container of fat free vanilla yogurt (single serving size)
    1 box of sugar free vanilla instant pudding mix (powder kind, not snack pack)

    Mix all together and let set in fridge for 3 hours.

  • Pumpkin Coconut Curry Soup

    Posted by: Yolanda Rogers
    Recipe by: a friend of mine from Maui

    1 onion, diced
    3 tbsp olive oil
    2 c organic vegetable broth
    14 oz can organic coconut milk
    15 oz can of pumpkin, not pumpkin pie mix

    ½ tsp each:
    Curry powder
    Ground ginger
    Sea salt
    Black pepper

    Sauté onions in olive oil until translucent and light browned.
    Add all other ingredients and simmer for 15-20 minutes.
    Served it with popcorn rice and a fresh green salad.

  • Pumpkin Bread with Mini Chocolate Chips

    Posted by: Janet Ortner
    Recipe by: Runners World (by Dimity McDowell, published 5/30/08)

    3½ cups flour
    3 cups granulated sugar
    2 tsp baking soda
    1½ tsp salt
    1 tsp ground cinnamon
    1 tsp ground nutmeg
    1 tsp ground cloves
    1½ cups of semi-sweet mini chocolate chips

    4 eggs
    1 cup canola oil
    2/3 cup water
    2 cups canned, plain pumpkin

    Preheat oven to 350° F.
    Combine all dry ingredients, except chocolate chips, in a large mixing bowl and mix well.
    In a separate bowl, slightly beat the eggs with a fork or wire whisk.
    Add the remaining wet ingredients to the eggs and stir well.
    Gradually add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients.
    Stir just until evenly mixed.
    Fold in chocolate chips.
    Coat 2 bread pans evenly with cooking spray.
    Pour half of the mixture into each pan.
    Bake for 50-60 minutes.

  • Vegetable Cream Cheese Pinwheels

    Posted by: June Kleban
    Recipe by: June Kleban

    2 packages (8-ounce size) cream cheese softened
    1 envelope ranch salad dressing mix
    2 green onions — finely chopped
    4 (12 inch size) flour tortillas (sundried tomato)
    1/2 cup celery — chopped
    1/2 cup red or green bell peppers — diced
    1/4 cup sliced or diced black olives — drained
    1/4 cup carrots — shredded

    In mixing bowl, blend cream cheese, salad dressing mix and green onions.
    Divide evenly among tortillas, (red and green tortillas would look great) spreading to cover completely.
    Sprinkle celery, red bell peppers, black olives and carrots over top.
    Roll up each tortilla tightly.
    Wrap each tortilla in plastic wrap.
    Chill for a few hours.
    Just before serving, slice each tortilla into 12 pieces.
    Serve cold.

  • Baked Okra

    Posted by: Wendy Ashley
    Recipe by: Wendy Ashley

    Fresh okra pods

    Cut okra pods in half.
    Spray pods and season with salt and pepper.
    Broil in an 450 degree oven for 10min or until crisp.

    Okay, I know this is strange since southern girls like fried okra.
    Simple, but I think they are delicious.

  • Two-Ingredient Pancake

    Posted by: Courtney Caughey-Stambul
    Recipe by: Tina Haupert of Carrots ‘N’ Cake

    To make a Two-Ingredient Pancake, use one small banana and one large egg. Smash the banana with a fork, then mix together with the egg, making a batter. Spray a frying pan with non-stick cooking spray. Pour the batter into the coated pan and cook on low to medium heat. Once the batter resembles a solid pancake, gently flip. Once thoroughly cooked, spread on the topping of your choice and enjoy! I like crunchy peanut butter on mine.

  • Deep Dark Chocolate Biscotti

    Posted by: Sharon Mack
    Recipe by: Cooking Light (March 2009, Linda Rogers)

    9.5 ounces whole-wheat flour (about 2 cups)
    2 tablespoons flax seed
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1/3 cup granulated sugar
    1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
    2 large egg whites
    1 large egg
    1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    2/3 cup dark chocolate chips (such as Hershey’s)
    3/4 cup unsalted almonds

    Preheat oven to 350°.

    Weigh or lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, flax seed, soda, and salt in a bowl, stirring with a whisk. Combine sugars, egg whites, and egg in a bowl; beat with a mixer at high speed for 2 minutes. Add vanilla; mix well. Add flour mixture to egg mixture; stir until combined. Fold in chocolate and almonds. Divide dough into 3 equal portions. Roll each portion into a 6-inch-long roll. Arrange rolls 3 inches apart on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Pat to a 1-inch thickness. Bake at 350° for 28 minutes or until firm.

    Remove rolls from baking sheet; cool 10 minutes on a wire rack. Cut rolls diagonally into 30 (1/2-inch) slices. Place, cut sides down, on baking sheet. Reduce oven temperature to 325°; bake 7 minutes. Turn cookies over; bake 7 minutes (cookies will be slightly soft in center but will harden as they cool). Remove from baking sheet; cool on wire rack.

    2 1/2 dozen (serving size: 1 biscotto)

    Nutritional Information:
    Amount per serving Calories: 94 Fat: 3.5g Saturated fat: 0.9g Monounsaturated fat: 1.7g Polyunsaturated fat: 0.7g Protein: 2.7g Carbohydrate: 14.4g Fiber: 1.9g Cholesterol: 7mg Iron: 0.7mg Sodium: 49mg Calcium: 18mg

  • Pumpkin Crunch Granola

    Posted by: Yolanda Rogers
    Recipe by: Eat Live Run

    For spice mix
    2 tsp cinnamon
    1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
    1/2 tsp ground ginger
    1/4 tsp allspice

    For candied pepitas
    2 cups pepitas (pumpkin seeds, raw)
    1 tbsp butter
    1/4 cup honey
    1 tbsp brown sugar

    1 tsp spice mix
    sprinkle of salt

    For granola assembly
    4 cups old fashioned oats
    remaining spice mix
    1 cup maple syrup
    3 tbsp coconut oil
    1 tsp salt

    Mix together all spice mix ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.


    Melt the butter in a skillet set over medium high heat. Add the pumpkin seeds and 1 tsp of the spice mix. Toast seeds, stirring constantly, until golden brown. And honey and brown sugar and continue to cook while stirring for another two minutes. Carefully transfer and spread out candied seeds on a large sheet tray. Let cool for about 12 minutes, until no longer sticky. Break seeds up with a spatula to avoid sticking and set aside. Place the oats, along with the remaining spice mix and salt, in a large bowl. Mix well.

    Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
    Combine the maple syrup and the coconut oil in a large skillet or small sauce pot over high heat. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for two minutes. Very carefully, pour the hot syrup over the oats. Toss well.

    Spread out granola on two large sheet pans. Bake for about 25 minutes, tossing every five minutes. When done, remove granola from the oven and let cool. Place cooled granola in a large bowl with the candied pumpkin seeds and toss well so everything is incorporated.

    I make a lot of granola as I limit processed foods and basically no processed sugars. This is one of my all time favorite recipes and make it every two weeks or so.

  • Macaroni and Cheddar Parmesan Cheese

    Posted by: Barbara Lytle
    Recipe by: Cookbook – Fix it and forget it lightly. Phyllis Pellman Good (p. 116)

    8oz elbow macaroni cooked al dente
    13oz evaporated milk
    1 cup skim milk
    2 eggs slightly beaten
    4 cups grated fat free cheddar – divided
    1/4 t salt
    1/4 t pepper
    1/4 cup grated fat- free Parmesan cheese

    In slow cooker, combine first four ingredients, 3 cups of cheddar cheese, salt and pepper. Mix. Top with remaining cheeses. Cover and cook on low for 3 hours. Makes 8 servings. Weight watcher points = 5.

  • Quinoa with Spinach

    Posted by: Mary D’Arcy
    Recipe by: Adapted from http://www.wearenotmartha.com/2011/02/quinoa-stuffed-acorn-squash/

    1 T butter
    1 C quinoa
    2 C chicken/veggie stock or broth (reduced sodium)
    1 T extra virgin olive oil
    1 small yellow onion, chopped finely
    4 garlic cloves, minced
    1 Habanero pepper, chopped finely (remove seeds for less heat)
    1/2 C mushrooms, chopped
    2 C spinach, uncooked
    1/3 block of feta, crumbled (more if you wish)
    1 T parsley, chopped
    1 T fresh lemon juice

    Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees.

    Cook quinoa according to directions. Use water, or chicken stock/broth for more flavor.

    While the quinoa is cooking, pour extra virgin olive oil into a skillet over medium heat. Sauté mushrooms, onion, garlic, and Habanero until they’re slightly browned, about 7-10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste and squeeze lemon juice over.

    Turn heat to low and add the cooked quinoa to the veggie mixture. Throw in 2 cups of spinach and stir to combine and wilt spinach a bit.

    Add in feta cheese and parsley. Save a little of each for topping, if you want. Serve and enjoy!

  • White Bean and Chicken Chili

    Posted by: Jennifer Orifice
    Recipe by: Adapted from Taste of Home recipe

    The mashed beans gives this chili recipe a nice hearty feel and will keep you feeling full. I made it for some friends and they raved about it. The beans and chicken give it plenty of healthy protein and fiber. The addition of the green onions is nice as well.

    3/4 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cubed
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/4 teaspoon pepper
    1 medium onion, chopped
    1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped (I made mine without, but jalapeno would give some nice heat)
    1 teaspoon Mexican chili seasoning
    2 tablespoons olive oil
    4 garlic cloves, minced
    2 cans (15 ounces each) white kidney or cannellini beans, rinsed and drained, divided
    3 cups chicken broth, divided
    Cheddar Cheese
    Sour cream
    minced fresh green onions, optional

    Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. In a large skillet over medium heat, cook the chicken, onion, jalapeno, oregano and cumin in oil for 3-4 minutes or until chicken is browned and vegetables are crisp-tender. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Transfer to a 3-qt. slow cooker. In a small bowl, mash 1 cup of beans; add 1/2 cup broth and stir until blended. Add to the slow cooker with the remaining beans and broth. Cover and cook on low for 3 to 3-1/2 hours or until heated through. Stir before serving. Sprinkle with cheese and garnish with sour cream and green onions if desired.

    Yield: 6 servings.

  • Mediterranean Quinoa Salad

    Posted by: Marcy Winokur
    Recipe by: Bellingham public schools

    This salad was served at my company holiday party last year. Delicious, light, healthy, and gluten free. Serves 6

    1 cup quinoa
    2 cups low sodium chicken broth
    2 tbs lemon juice
    2 tbs red wine vinegar
    1 tsp fresh chopped garlic
    1 and 1/2 tbs olive oil
    1 tsp salt
    1/4 tsp ground white pepper
    1/2 cup sweet red peppers, chopped
    2 tbs raw chopped parsley
    1/4 cup chopped green onions, tops and bulbs
    2 tbs chopped red onions
    1/2 cup halved cherry tomatoes
    2 tbs sliced black olives
    1 tb crumbled feta

    Place quinoa in strainer and rinse. Put quinoa and chicken broth in sauce pan and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce to a simmer. Cook 10-15 minutes or until all liquid is absorbed. Set aside to cool. Combine lemon juice, vinegar, garlic, oil, salt, and pepper. Set aside. Combine vegetables in a bowl. Stir in quinoa, feta, and dressing. Serve room temperature or chilled.

  • Pumpkin Ice Cream

    Posted by: Marcy Winokur
    Recipe by: David Lebovitz (adapted from the craft of baking by Karen Demasco and Mindy Fox)

    Homemade ice cream is so easy to make and so much healthier. You know exactly what ingredients are in it and how it was made. It is rich and decadent and people end up eating less for some reason. Some of the ingredients may be seen as unhealthy but everything in moderation. The fresh spices and pumpkin, plus the whipping of the ingredients makes it much healthier than many commercial ice creams. This was a huge hit at thanksgiving.

    Ice cream maker
    1 and 1/2 cups whole milk (375 ml)
    1 cup heavy cream (250 ml)
    1/3 cup plus
    2 tbs granulate sugar (95 g)
    1 teaspoon freshly-grated ginger
    1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1 cinnamon stick
    1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
    1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
    5 large egg yolks
    1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar (60g)
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    3/4 cup canned pumpkin puree (180 g; 100% pure pumpkin; you can make homage, but its much easier to use e canned pumpkin)

    2 teaspoons grand mariner, rum, or brandy

    Make an ice bath by putting some ice and a little water in a large bowl and nest a smaller metal bowl (one that will hold at least 2 quarts, 2l) inside it. Set a mesh strainer over the top.

    In a medium saucepan mix the milk, cream, granulated sugar, ginger, ground cinnamon, cinnamon stick, nutmeg, and salt.

    Warm the mixture until hot and the edges begin to bubble and foam.

    Whisk the egg yolks in a separate bowl and gradually whisk in about half of the warm spiced milk mixture, stirring constantly.

    Scrape the warmed yolks back in to the saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring constantly and scraping the bottom with a heatproof spatula, until the mixture thickens and coats the spatula. If using an instant-read thermometer, it should read between 160º-170ºF (71º-76ºC).

    Immediately pour the mixture through the strainer into the bowl nested in the ice bath. Mix in the brown sugar, then stir until cool, then chill thoroughly, preferably overnight.

    Whisk in the vanilla, liquor (if using), and pumpkin puree. Press the mixture through a fine-mesh strainer, then freeze in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

  • Pumpkin Pie Pudding

    Posted by: Kim Marryott Lee
    Recipe by: Healthy Cooking

    2 cups 2% milk
    ¾ cup brown sugar
    ¼ cup cornstarch
    2 eggs
    1 cup pumpkin puree/canned pumpkin
    Dash salt
    ¼ tsp pumpkin pie spice

    Whisk eggs in bowl, set aside.
    In large saucepan, whisk milk, sugar, & cornstarch until well blended.
    Heat (medium high) to a boil, let boil x 3 minutes, whisking constantly.
    Slowly pour ½ of the milk mixture into the eggs, then return the milk & egg mixture to the milk saucepan.
    Continue cooking liquids for another 3 minutes (or until it has thickened), whisking constantly.
    Remove from heat and stir in pumpkin, salt, & spice. Mix until well blended.
    Spoon into 6 custard cups (or ramekins, or whatever serving tool you like). Chill for 30 minutes (or until pudding has set).

  • Red Quinoa Salad

    Posted by: Idaisa Gomes
    Recipe by: Idaisa Gomes

    2 cups of red Quinoa
    1 avocado
    1 small red, 1 orange and 1 yellow bell pepper
    1/2 small red onion
    olive oil

    Chop very small peppers, onion and cilantro. Set aside. Cook Red Quinoa as per box instructions. Once is cool, mix with all chopped ingredients, add salt, lemon and olive oil to taste. Put in the refrigerator for about 20 minutes. Enjoy!!! I love this recipe… Quinoa has protein, carbs, good fat from avocado and vitamins, antioxidants from peppers!

  • Winter Squash Risotto

    Posted by: Pam Loveland
    Recipe by: Eating Well

    5 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth, or vegetable broth
    2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
    3 medium shallots, thinly sliced
    3 cups chopped peeled butternut, hubbard, red kuri or kabocha squash (1/2-inch pieces)
    2 cups shiitake mushroom caps, thinly sliced
    1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
    1/8 teaspoon crumbled saffron threads, (optional)
    1 cup arborio rice
    1/2 cup dry white wine, or dry vermouth
    1/2 cup finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

    Place broth in a medium saucepan; bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat so the broth remains steaming, but is not simmering.

    Meanwhile, heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add shallots; cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in squash and mushrooms; cook, stirring often, until the mushrooms give off their liquid, about 5 minutes. Add thyme, salt, pepper and saffron (if using); cook for 30 seconds. Add rice; stir until translucent, about 1 minute. Add wine (or vermouth) and cook, stirring, until almost absorbed by the rice, about 1 minute.

    Stir in 1/2 cup of the hot broth; reduce heat to a gentle simmer and cook, stirring constantly, until the liquid has been absorbed. Continue adding the broth 1/2 cup at a time, stirring after each addition until all the liquid has been absorbed, until the rice is tender and creamy, 30 to 40 minutes total. (You may have some broth left.) Remove from the heat and stir in cheese.

    Literally the dried stigma from Crocus sativus, saffron is the world’s most expensive spice. Over 75,000 flowers are required for each pound of saffron. Fortunately, a little goes a long way. It’s used sparingly to add golden yellow color and flavor to a wide variety of Middle Eastern, African and European-inspired foods.

    Find it in the specialty-herb section of large supermarkets, gourmet-food shops and tienda.com. Wrapped in foil and placed in a container with a tight-fitting lid, it will keep in a cool, dry place for several years.