Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Creole Shrimp Stew

As the weather cools down, we start craving the warmth of hearty soups and stews.  The Delicious Dietitian Creole Spice Blend adds a taste of the bayou on cool fall nights. This simple stew comes together quickly and makes a great weeknight meal when it's cold outside!

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped green bell pepper
  • 1 cup thinly sliced turkey smoked sausage (about 6 ounces) 
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 3/4 cup fat-free, No Sodium chicken broth
  • 1 can No Sodium Added diced tomatoes
  • 1  can (4 oz) diced green chilis  
  • 8 ounces peeled and deveined medium shrimp 
  • (15-ounce) can organic kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 Tbsp The Delicious Dietitian Creole Spice Blend
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

  • Heat a large saucepan over medium-high heat and add olive oil to pan.  Add bell pepper, sausage, and garlic to pan; sauté 3 minutes or until bell pepper is tender, stirring occasionally. Add broth, tomatoes, and chilis; bring to a boil. Stir in shrimp, beans and Creole spice blend; cover, reduce heat, and simmer 6 minutes or until shrimp are done. Sprinkle with parsley and enjoy!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Lighten Up Thanksgiving Favorites

Did you know that the average calorie intake on Thanksgiving for Americans is about 4,500 calories!  That's two to three times what should be consumed in a day.  This Thanksgiving, a few small recipe tweaks can help save you and your family from extreme overload.  
  • If a recipe calls for cheese, use 2% or part skim cheese, and use half the amount called for in the recipe.  Your recipe won't suffer, but you will save about 100 calories per serving. 
  • Same thing goes for sugar, you can use half the amount called for in recipes.  
  • Use fresh or frozen vegetables instead of canned.  
  • Use low fat or fat free dairy products such as skim milk, low fat sour cream and cream cheese.
Look at the difference in calories, fat, and sodium in this lightened up version of crowd pleasing traditional green bean casserole.  

Traditional Green Bean Casserole
1 can Cream of Mushroom Soup
1/2 cup whole milk
1 tsp soy sauce
2 cans green beans
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 can French fried onions
black pepper to taste
Mix first 6 ingredients together in a large bowl. Transfer to glass baking dish and top with onions. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes until hot and bubbly.
Makes 6 servings. Serving size 1/2 cup.
Nutrition Facts: 331 calories

23 grams of fat 1200 mg sodium 22 grams carb

Better Green Bean Casserole
1 can low sodium, low fat cream of mushroom soup (such as Campbell’s Healthy Request)
1/2 cup skim milk
4 cups fresh or frozen steamed green beans
1/2 cup 2% shredded cheddar cheese
1 Tbsp Creole seasoning
Black pepper to taste
1/2 cup coarse bread crumbs
Mix first 6 ingredients together in a large bowl. Transfer to glass baking dish and top with onions. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes until hot and bubbly.
Makes 6 servings. Serving size 1/2 cup.
Nutrition Facts: 131 calories

3.5 grams of fat 258 mg sodium 15 grams carb 

By making just a few small changes, you save 100 calories, 20 grams of fat, almost 1,000 mg of sodium, and 7 grams of carbohydrate.  
If you make these changes to a few recipes, you can save yourself a significant number of calories over the course of the day.  

Have a Happy, Healthy Thanksgiving!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Southern Mushroom and Swiss Breakfast Casserole

The holidays are fast approaching, and for many people, the fun and festivities will mean out of town house guests.  Keep your company happy with this yummy twist on a breakfast casserole. Instead of the heavy sausage and cheddar cheese, the low fat swiss and a few slices of bacon add flavor without the calorie over load.   Many people make the mistake of "saving up" calories for a big meal, but a good breakfast is important to keep from over indulging later in the day.  This casserole provides a blend of carbohydrates and protein to help keep everyone full until the main course.  Best of all, it can be assembled the day before adn refrigerated.  Serve with a big bowl of fruit.  

Mushroom and Swiss Breakfast Casserole

12 ounces ciabatta, cut into 1-inch cubes (about 7 cups)
2 tsp olive oil 
2 cups chopped onion
2 (8-ounce) packages presliced mushrooms
Cooking spray 
1 1/2 cups shredded reduced-fat Swiss cheese 
6 bacon slices, cooked and crumbled 
3 cups 1% low-fat milk 
1 1/2 cups egg substitute
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
1 Tbsp Southern All Purpose Spice Blend
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 
Thyme sprigs (optional)

  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. Arrange bread in a single layer on a jelly-roll pan. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes or until toasted. Place bread cubes in a large bowl.
  3. Add olive oil to a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and mushrooms to pan; sauté 10 minutes or until liquid evaporates and vegetables are tender. Add onion mixture to bread; toss well to combine. Arrange half of bread mixture in a 13 x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle with half of cheese and half of bacon; top with remaining bread mixture, cheese, and bacon.
  4. Combine milk and next 4 ingredients (through pepper), stirring with a whisk. Pour milk mixture over bread mixture. Cover and refrigerate 8 hours.
  5. Preheat oven to 350°.
  6. Remove from refrigerator; let stand at room temperature for 15 minutes. Bake strata, covered, at 350° for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake an additional 15 minutes or until set. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with thyme sprigs, if desired. 

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Mini Southern Twice Baked Potatoes

November is prime football season in the south, and no matter which team you cheer for, the tailgate is an essential part of the game.   The right tailgate snacks can help celebrate a win or soothe a painful loss.  But the wrong tailgate snacks (too many creamy dips, chips, hotdogs, etc) can leave you feeling sick to your stomach no matter how the game turns out.  Many of these snack foods lack nutritional value, but are loaded with calories.  That turns into a double whammy for your diet: you need to eat more to feel full, but take in WAY too many calories in the process!

This twist on calorie heavy loaded potato skins balances carbohydrate and protein from the Greek yogurt and cheese to help fill you up and keep you full.  This more substantial snack should help you avoid over-doing it on the empty calories.  You might want to double this recipe if you are serving a crowd!

Mini Twice Baked Potatoes

6 small red potatoes
2 tsp olive oil
1 Tbsp skim milk
2 Tbsp plain Greek yogurt
1 Tbsp olive oil
2 tsp  The Delicious Dietitian Southern All Purpose Spice Blend
1/3 cup 2% shredded cheddar cheese, plus 2 Tbsp
Chives for garnish (optional)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Coat potatoes in 1 tsp olive oil and place on a jelly roll pan.  Bake about 35 minutes, or until tender.  Let cool slightly.

Slice potatoes in half, and spoon pulp into a mixing bowl, reserve skins.  Add milk, yogurt, olive oil, spice blend, and 1/3 cup cheese to potato mixture.  Spoon potato mixture into skins, sprinkle with remaining cheese.  Bake at 400 for 15 minutes, or until cheese is melted.  Sprinkle with chives.  Enjoy!