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Spinach Salad with Mandarin Vinaigrette

Spinach Salad with Mandarin Vinaigrette Recipe

This salad is full of spinach that provides vitamins A, C, and K. The dressing is made with heart-healthy olive oil and the juice of fresh mandarin oranges, which adds even more vitamin C. Serve it as a starter or as a side with grilled salmon or roasted tofu.

Yield: 4 servings

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Ingredients

Dressing:

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 ½ tbsp fresh mandarin orange juice

4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

¼ tsp fine ground sea salt

1/8 tsp ground black pepper

1/8 tsp ground ginger

Salad:

6 cups fresh spinach

1 cup diced cucumber

3 fresh pearl white or red onions, sliced

1/3 cup raw cashews

2 mandarin oranges, peeled and segments chopped

Directions

Add the garlic to a small dish and stir in the orange juice. Whisk in the olive oil. Add the salt, pepper, and ginger, and whisk for about 30 seconds, until all ingredients are combined.

Place the spinach in a large serving bowl. Top the spinach with cucumber, onion slices, cashews, and mandarin orange segments. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss to coat before serving.

Nutrition information for 1 serving: Calories 224; Total Fat 18.7 g; Saturated Fat 3 g; Trans Fat 0 g; Cholesterol 0 mg; Sodium 186 mg; Carbohydrate 15.6 g; Fiber 2.9 g; Sugar 9.1 g; Protein 3.5 g

Oatmeal Banana Pancakes

Oatmeal Banana Pancake Recipe

Make a sweet and filling breakfast without added sugar. Banana adds so much natural sweetness to these pancakes that you won’t need a drip of high-calorie syrup to enjoy them. Ground oats make them filling and full of heart-healthy fiber.

Yield: 5 pancakes

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 10 minutes

Ingredients

1 cup dry old-fashioned rolled oats

1 medium banana, mashed

1 large egg

¼ tsp pure vanilla extract

¼ tsp ground cinnamon

1 tsp baking powder

1/8 tsp fine ground sea salt

2 tbsp whole wheat flour

5 tbsp non-fat milk

Chopped banana for serving (optional)

Directions

Place the oats in a small food processor and pulse until they are ground fine and resemble a coarse flour.

In a medium bowl, stir together the banana and egg about 1 minute, until blended.

Stir in the vanilla and cinnamon. Next add the baking powder and sea salt. Stir well.

In a small bowl, stir together the oats and whole wheat flour. Gradually add these dry ingredients, a little at a time, as you continue to stir. Finally fold in the milk to form a loose batter.

Preheat a medium-skillet or griddle sprayed with non-stick cooking spray over medium-high heat. Add ¼ cup of the batter to the skillet for each pancake. Cook 1 ½ to 2 minutes, or until the edges begin to brown and the pancake bubbles. Flip and cook an additional 1 ½ to 2 minutes.

Serve warm with chopped bananas, if desired.

Nutrition information for 1 pancake: Calories 101; Total Fat 1.3 g; Saturated Fat 0.2 g; Trans Fat 0 g; Cholesterol 0 mg; Sodium 179 mg; Carbohydrate 19.2 g; Fiber 2.6 g; Sugar 4.1 g; Protein 3.9 g

Toasted Sesame Green Beans

Toasted Sesame Green Bean Recipe

Green beans provide fiber, B vitamins, and antioxidants. They make a quick and easy side dish to pair with any of your favorite entrees. This recipe gives fresh green beans a roasted, nutty flavor and cooks quickly so that the beans stay crispy and flavorful.

Yield: 6 servings

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 10 minutes

Ingredients

½ tbsp olive oil

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 lb. fresh green beans, stems trimmed

½ tsp dark sesame oil

½ tbsp black or white toasted sesame seeds

¼ tsp fine ground sea salt

Directions

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute.

Add the green beans to the pan, and stir often to coat the beans in the oil and garlic. Reduce the heat slightly, if necessary, to prevent the garlic from burning. Cook for about 5 minutes, until the green beans are slightly tender, but still crisp.

Remove from the heat and stir in the sesame oil, sesame seeds, and salt. Serve warm.

Nutrition information for 1 serving: Calories 35; Total Fat 1.6 g; Saturated Fat 0.2 g; Trans Fat 0 g; Cholesterol 0 mg; Sodium 98 mg; Carbohydrate 4.4 g; Fiber 2 g; Sugar 0.8 g; Protein 1.1 g

Chocolate Scones

Chocolate Scones Recipe

These scones provide a sweet breakfast treat that will cure a chocolate craving without ruining your eating plan. They are made with whole wheat flour for extra fiber and slightly sweetened with raw sugar and dark chocolate chips. They are a healthier option when compared to store-bought scones that can contain as many as 500 calories and 22 grams of fat.

Yield: 8 scones

Prep time: 10 minutes

Bake time: 17 minutes

Ingredients

1 ¼ cups whole wheat flour

3 tbsp raw sugar

2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder

2 tsp baking powder

1/8 tsp fine ground sea salt

¼ cup cold unsalted butter, cubed

½ cup + 1 tbsp fat-free milk

2 tbsp dark chocolate chips

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, 2 tablespoons of the sugar, the cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt. Add the butter.

Use a pastry blender or two knives to cut the butter into the dough until all the ingredients are combined and the butter is evenly distributed in pea-size pieces.

Stir in the milk. Add the chocolate chips. Knead the ingredients into a thick dough until all ingredients are combined.

Place the dough on a greased baking sheet or a baking sheet covered with a silicone mat. Shape it into a flat, 6-inch circle. Sprinkle the remaining 1 tablespoon of sugar over the dough, and press it in gently. Use a pastry cutter or a knife to cut the circle into 8 equal wedges.

Leave the wedges intact and the scone dough in the circle, and bake for 15 to 17 minutes until the center is firm.

Let cool for 2 to 3 minutes, and then use the pastry cutter or knife to retrace the cuts to separate the scones into wedges. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Nutrition information for 1 scone: Calories 151; Total Fat 7.1 g; Saturated Fat 4.4 g; Trans Fat 0 g; Cholesterol 15 mg; Sodium 148 mg; Carbohydrate 22.7 g; Fiber 2.6 g; Sugar 6.6 g; Protein 3 g

Spinach and Black Bean Lasagnas for Two

Spinach and Black Bean Lasagna Recipe

These individual vegetarian lasagnas are great for a special occasion. Preparing lasagna in single servings allows you to use more nutrient-rich sauce and less high-calorie cheese. The spinach increases vegetable intake, and the black beans make it a hearty meal while adding protein and extra fiber.

Yield: 2 servings

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 10 minutes

Baking time: 35 minutes

Ingredients

½ tbsp olive oil

¼ cup chopped onion

1 clove garlic, minced

2 cups fresh spinach, chopped

1 ¾ cups low-sodium tomato sauce (about a 15 oz. can)

1 tsp dried basil

¾ tsp dried oregano

½ tsp balsamic vinegar

¼ tsp ground black pepper

1/8 to ¼ tsp fine ground sea salt

3 sheets dry, oven ready, lasagna noodles (7 x 3.25 inch sheets)

1 cup no-salt-added black beans, rinsed and drained

¼ cup finely shredded Parmesan cheese

Directions

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Spray two single serve ramekins or casserole dishes (about 4 x 5 inches in size) with non-stick cooking spray.

In a medium skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high. Add the onion and garlic. Cook for 3 minutes. Add the spinach, and cook 1 more minute.

Reduce the heat to medium. Add the tomato sauce. Stir in the basil, oregano, balsamic vinegar, and black pepper. Simmer 5 minutes. Remove the sauce from the heat. Taste the sauce, and add the salt a little at time until it reaches your taste preferences.

To make a lasagna, spoon about 1 tablespoon of the sauce into one of the baking dishes. You will need 3 noodles for each lasagna, so break the 3 sheets into 6 pieces that will fit into your baking dishes. Top the sauce with a piece of noodle.

Spoon 3 tablespoons of sauce over the noodle, and top with ¼ cup of black beans. Place another noodle piece on top of the beans, and add 3 more tablespoons of sauce. Next, layer on another ¼ cup of beans. Add the final noodle, and finish with 3 more tablespoons of sauce. Sprinkle with half of the cheese.

Repeat the same process for the second lasagna.

Loosely cover each dish with aluminum foil, and place them on a baking sheet. Bake covered for 30 minutes or until the noodles are tender. Remove the foil, and bake for another 5 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes before serving.

Nutrition information for 1 serving: Calories 388; Total Fat 7.9 g; Saturated Fat 2.6 g; Trans Fat 0 g; Cholesterol 10 mg; Sodium 311 mg; Carbohydrate 62 g; Fiber 12.1 g; Sugar 10.4 g; Protein 19.1 g

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