Posts Tagged 'Recipe'

Baked kale chips

baked kale chips

Cropped image. T. Tseng, Flickr. CC license.


  • 2 cups cut and washed kale (can purchase bags of kale already cut and cleaned)
  • 1/2 teaspoon olive oil
  • Sea salt to taste (less than an 1/8 teaspoon suggested)


  1. Preheat oven to 350º. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  2. If using prewashed cut and cleaned kale, go to step 3. Otherwise, remove kale leaves from the thick stems using a knife or kitchen shears. Tear the leaves into bite-size pieces. Wash and dry by using a salad spinner or blotting with a paper towel.
  3. Place kale in bowl. Gently toss with olive oil and sea salt.
  4. Spread kale out on the cookie sheet, separate leaves slightly so as not to overlap.
  5. Bake 10 to 15 minutes, until the edges brown but are not burnt. Serve immediately.


Makes 1 serving.  (Each serving counts as low-starch vegetables.)

Nutrition analysis per serving:

Calories:  60
Fat:  2 g
Saturated Fat:  0 g
Trans Fat:  0 g
Cholesterol:  0 mg
Sodium:  235 mg
Carbohydrates:  8 g
Fiber:  2 g
Sugar:  0 g
Protein:  3 g

 Recipe adapted from

Enjoy national noodle month with veggie pasta and healthy Alfredo sauce

zucchini noodles in skillet

Marco Verch, Flickr. CC license.

Noodles and pasta are great foundations for healthy, nutritious and satisfying meals. However pasta is generally high in carbohydrates and the average serving size of whole grain pasta is 2 ounces dry (approximately 1 cup cooked), which contains 200 calories and 42 grams of carbohydrates. It is very easy to over-indulge and eat more than what is recommended.

Fear not, today there are other pasta alternatives popping up. Some of my favorite low-carb noodles include zucchini noodles and spaghetti squash. Let’s compare them to whole grain pasta.

  • Whole-grain pasta: 1 cup cooked (2 ounces dry) has 200 calories and 42 grams of carbohydrates.
  • Spaghetti squash: 1 cup cooked contains 46 calories and 10 grams of carbohydrates.
  • Zucchini: 1 cup cooked has 28 calories and 7 grams of carbohydrates.

Both spaghetti squash and zucchini are perfect spaghetti noodle substitutes because they are low-starch vegetables so you can have an unlimited amount. Top with your favorite sauce and you are good to go!

Take the noodle challenge

If you really want to step outside of your noodle box, I challenge you to try some more unique pasta alternatives, such as carrot noodles or beet noodles. You can buy these products pre-packaged in the produce department at your local grocery store or spiralize them yourself with a spiral slicer. (Carrots = 1 cup, 70 Calories, 16 grams carbohydrates; Beets = 1 cup, 80 calories, 16 grams carbohydrates)

Healthy Alfredo Sauce


  • 1 Tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 cup vegetable or chicken broth (low sodium)
  • ½ cup skim milk
  • ½ cup non-fat plain greek yogurt (room temperature)
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ cup grated parmesan


  1. Heat olive oil in a large sauce pan over medium heat.
  2. Sprinkle with cornstarch and cook for one minute, stirring constantly.
  3. While whisking, slowly add in broth and milk. Continue whisking to combine until smooth.
  4. Raise heat to medium high and bring the mixture to a simmer. Once simmering, simmer for about 2 minutes, until it starts to thicken, whisking constantly.
  5. Remove from heat and whisk in greek yogurt little by little.
  6. Once combined, place back on medium heat and stir in Parmesan cheese, salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
  7. Bring to a simmer and simmer for an additional 2 minutes, whisking constantly.
  8. Serve over pasta immediately.


6 servings (Serving size equals 1/6 of the entire sauce recipe.)

– Alyson Nielsen is a dietetic intern with Beaumont Health. The Beaumont Weight Control Center offers cooking demonstrations to the community. View a list of current demonstrations here.

Adapted from

Cold weather comfort food

vegetable soup with bread

During the cold winter months, our natural inclination is to seek foods that will warm us and “comfort” us. Don’t let the shorter days and colder air temperatures drive you into hibernation mode! Fight the urge to stock up on simple carbohydrates by increasing fiber and nutrient density with more vegetables, fruits and whole grains. When making comforting soups and chilis, try these tips to pack on nutrition not pounds.

Substitute leaner protein

  • Use ground turkey or chicken breast instead of ground beef in chili recipes.
  • Use dried beans or lentils instead of meat to add low-fat protein and increase fiber, thereby increasing satiety.
  • Substitute leaner turkey-based products—like turkey Italian sausage, turkey pastrami, turkey pepperoni—in place of higher fat beef or pork versions.
  • Substitute shrimp or scallops in a soup or make a seafood gumbo instead of chili.

Fill in with lower-calorie ingredients

  • Cut the starchy ingredients in half (i.e, rice, noodles, potatoes) and double the low starch vegetables.
  • Serve a green salad with low-fat dressing as a first course to fill the stomach before getting to the more calorie dense foods.

Turn up the heat

  • Add a little spice to your recipes. Experiment with different seasonings to excite the taste buds and provide satisfaction without added calories. If you’re unsure of which spices to combine, there are many pre-made mixes from companies like Mrs. Dash and McCormick that do the work for you!

Try this hearty soup the next time you want a warm, comforting meal; it’s a favorite in my house and I hope it will become a favorite in yours too!

Lentil soup with sausage and kale


  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound turkey Italian sausage
  • 1 cup brown lentils
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 or 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped or grated
  • ½ pound Cremini mushrooms, cleaned and thinly sliced
  • 1 baking potato, peeled and diced
  • 2 sprigs rosemary, leaves removed and chopped
  • 3 or 4 sprigs thyme, leaves removed
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • ¼ cup tomato paste
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken stock
  • 1 bunch kale, stems removed and discarded, leaves shredded


  1. Place a large soup pot over medium-high heat with 1 tablespoon olive oil.
  2. Remove sausage from casings and add to hot oil. Sauté sausage for 3 to 4 minutes, breaking it up into small pieces as it cooks and browns.
  3. While the sausage is browning, pour the lentils onto a light-colored plate and sift through looking for any small stones.
  4. To the browned sausage, add onion, garlic, mushrooms, potato, rosemary, thyme, pepper and tomato paste. Cook, stirring frequently, for 3-4 minutes.
  5. Add the stock and 2 cups of water. Turn the heat up to high and bring up to a bubble.
  6. Add the lentils and the kale. Stir until the kale wilts then turn the heat down to medium.
  7. Simmer 30 to 40 minutes, until the lentils are tender.


Makes 6 servings. (Serving size equals 1½ cups.)

Each serving counts as 1 protein, 1 starch and low starch vegetables.

Nutrition analysis per serving

Calories:  330

Fat:  8 g

Saturated Fat:  2 g

Trans Fat:  0 g

Cholesterol:  40 mg

Sodium:  520 mg

Carbohydrate:  41 g

Fiber:  7 g

Sugar:  6 g

Protein:  27 g

– Christine Licari, RDN, is a registered dietitian with the Beaumont Health Center’s Weight Control Center. The Beaumont Weight Control Center offers cooking demonstrations to the community. View a list of current demonstrations here.

Recipe adapted from Rachael Ray and

Turkey chili taco soup

close up of turkey chili taco soup

image credit:

Nothing sounds better to me during the cold winter months than warm, comforting foods like soups, chili and casseroles. I used to avoid many of these dishes due to their high calorie content from refined carbohydrates and saturated or trans fats, but I’ve learned how modify these recipes and make healthy substitutes using things like skim milk, low-fat cheese, whole grains and extra veggies. Now I enjoy my favorite dishes without all the calories! Another benefit is that many of these dishes can be made ahead of time and easily reheated or thrown into a slow cooker for a quick, convenient meal.


  • Cooking spray
  • 1 pound 99 percent lean ground turkey
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 bell pepper, chopped
  • 10 ounces tomatoes with green chilies (e.g., Rotel)
  • 15 ounces canned or frozen corn, drained
  • 15 ounces no salt added kidney beans, drained
  • 8 ounces tomato sauce
  • 16 ounces fat-free refried beans
  • 1 packet low-sodium taco seasoning
  • 2 ½ cups low-sodium chicken broth


  1. Spray a large pot with cooking spray then brown the turkey over medium heat, breaking up with a wooden spoon as it cooks.
  2. When turkey is cooked through, add onions and pepper and cook 2-3 minutes.
  3. Add tomatoes, corn, beans, tomato sauce, refried beans, taco seasoning and chicken broth.
  4. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer 10 to 15 minutes.
  5. Serve hot and top with toppings of choice.


Serves 9. Serving size is 1 ¼ cup.

Nutrition analysis per serving

  • Calories: 225
  • Total Fat: 2 g
  • Saturated Fat 0 g
  • Cholesterol: 25 mg
  • Sodium: 905 mg
  • Carbohydrates: 31.5 g
  • Fiber: 7.5 g
  • Sugar: 4 g
  • Protein: 22 g

Megan Jozefowicz, RD at Beaumont Weight Control Center, Rochester Hills. The Beaumont Weight Control Center offers cooking demonstrations to the community. View a list of current demonstrations here.

* Recipe adapted from

Spicy maple turkey breast with quick pan sauce

spiced maple turkey

image credit:

Ingredients for the turkey:

  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ½ teaspoon ground coriander
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 (1 ½ pound) skinless, boneless turkey breast cutlets
  • Cooking spray

Ingredients for the sauce:

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 2/3 cup chopped onion
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 ¼ cup low sodium chicken stock
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper

Directions for the turkey:

  1. Preheat oven to 450° F.
  2. Combine first 8 ingredients in a large bowl.
  3. Add turkey, turning to coat.
  4. Marinate at room temperature for 20 minutes. Remove turkey from marinade and discard marinade.
  5. Place a rack inside a roasting pan; coat rack lightly with cooking spray. Arrange turkey on rack.
  6. Bake at 450° F for 25 minutes or until a thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the meat registers 155° F.
  7. Remove from oven. Let stand 10 minutes. Cut turkey diagonally across the grain.

Directions for the sauce:

  1. Heat a medium non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 2 teaspoons oil; swirl skillet to coat.
  2. Add onion and garlic to pan and sauté 4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Combine stock and flour in a bowl, stirring with a whisk.
  4. Add stock mixture to onion mixture, stirring with the whisk. Bring to a boil; cook for 2 minutes or until slightly thick, stirring constantly.
  5. Remove from heat; stir in ¼ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper.
  6. Serve sauce with turkey.


Makes 8 servings. (Serving size equals 4 ounces turkey breast and 1 ounce of sauce. Each serving counts as 1 protein and 1 fat.)

Nutrition analysis per serving:

Calories:  250
Fat:  4 g
Saturated Fat:              0 g
Trans Fat:                    0 g
Cholesterol:                 65 mg
Sodium:                       470 mg
Carbohydrate:             8 g
Fiber:                           0 g
Sugar:                          0 g
Protein:                        43 g

Lightened up green bean casserole with shallot crumb topping

close up of green bean casserole with crumb topping

image credit: skinnytaste


  • 2 pounds frozen whole green beans (defrosted and snapped in half)

For the topping:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup shallots, finely diced
  • 1/2 cup seasoned breadcrumbs
  • 1 tablespoon grated Romano or Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme (or 1 tsp fresh)

For the green beans:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/3 cup shallots, minced
  • 16 ounces sliced mushrooms
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 cup reduced sodium chicken stock (or vegetable for vegetarian)
  • 1 cup 2% milk
  • 1/4 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese


For the topping:

  1. Heat a medium-sized skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add the shallots and sauté about 3 to 5 minutes, stirring occasionally until golden brown.
  3. Reduce heat to medium-low, add breadcrumbs, grated cheese and thyme.
  4. Sauté until golden brown, about 5 or 6 minutes, stirring frequently, careful not to burn.
  5. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Lightly spray a 13 x 9″ baking dish.

For the green beans:

  1. Heat oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat.
  2. Add shallots and sauté 1 to 2 minutes.
  3. Add mushrooms, season with salt and pepper and sauté 6-8 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Sprinkle flour over the mushrooms; stir constantly for about a minute.
  5. Slowly add chicken stock, then milk. Bring to a low boil, and cook stirring occasionally until thickened, about 3 minutes.
  6. Stir in Romano cheese.


  1. Add defrosted green beans and mix well, season with salt and pepper as needed; pour into prepared baking dish.
  2. Top with toasted bread crumbs and bake about 30 minutes.


Makes 10 servings. Serving size equals approximately 1 cup. (Each serving counts as 1 fat, 1 starch and low starch vegetables.)

Nutrition analysis per serving

  • Calories:          140
  • Fat:                  5 grams
  • Saturated fat:  1.5 grams
  • Trans fat:         0 grams
  • Cholesterol:     5 milligrams
  • Sodium:           180 milligrams
  • Carbohydrate: 19 grams
  • Fiber:               4 grams
  • Sugar:              5 grams
  • Protein:            6 grams

– Mary Ligotti-Hitch, R.D., is a registered dietitian with the Beaumont Health Center’s Weight Control Center.

Adapted from



30-minute dinner:  Sheet pan balsamic-herb chicken and vegetables

sheet page chicken and vegetables

image credit:

After a long day at work, it can be hard to find the motivation to cook a healthy dinner. I find myself not wanting to cook because I’m tired and don’t have the energy to put in an enormous amount of effort for dinner. With life being so hectic for everyone, I wanted to share a quick and easy recipe that takes me 30 minutes to prepare with minimal clean-up.

This balsamic-herb chicken and vegetables recipe is a great because it only requires one pan and the most work is cutting up the vegetables. Aside from the quickness of this recipe, I enjoy it because I can use it as meal prepping for the week. I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do!

 Sheet pan balsamic-herb chicken and vegetables

Ingredients for the chicken

  • 16 ounces boneless/skinless chicken breasts, halved
  • 1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • ½ Tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons fresh basil, chopped or 1 teaspoon dried
  • 1 teaspoon fresh parsley, chopped or ½ teaspoon dried
  • ¾ teaspoon salt

Ingredients for the vegetables

  • Cooking spray
  • 1 large red bell pepper, cored and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 medium zucchini, quartered lengthwise and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 cup asparagus, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 medium red onion, cut into 1-inch pieces, layers separated
  • 1 cup cauliflower florets
  • 2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 ½ Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons fresh basil, chopped or 1 teaspoon dried
  • 2 teaspoons fresh parsley chopped or 1 teaspoon dried


  1. Preheat the oven to 450° F. Line a large sheet pan with parchment.
  2. Mix marinade for chicken by combining balsamic vinegar, olive oil, garlic, basil, parsley and salt.
  3. Place chicken in marinade. Let chicken marinate while preparing the vegetables (the longer the better).
  4. In a large bowl, toss the vegetables with balsamic vinegar, olive oil, salt, black pepper, basil and parsley.
  5. Spread the vegetables onto the large sheet pan. Place the chicken within the vegetables.
  6. Roast until tender on the lower rack in the oven (about 20 minutes). Serve immediately.

Freezer-friendly tip

Let the cooked dish cool completely and then portion into freezer containers. You may freeze the meal for up to three months. When ready to eat, thaw in the refrigerator overnight. Reheat in a 325° F oven until warm (about 20 minutes).


4 servings (Serving Size: 1 piece chicken, 1 cup veggies)

Nutrition information

251 calories per serving

– Lauren Baker was a dietetic intern with Beaumont Health. The Beaumont Weight Control Center offers cooking demonstrations to the community. View a list of current demonstrations here.



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