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Lemon Wild Blueberry Mini Tarts

Lemon Wild Blueberry Mini Tarts

Yes, we’re the first to admit it, we’re registered dietitians and personal trainers and we have a sweet tooth!  Ah, what’s a girl to do?! :) Luckily for us, we also LOVE the sweet taste of fruit–in fact so much so that as kids who would attend weddings, bar-mitzvahs, picnics….you name it, we’d leave feeling sick and water heavy from eating so much fruit! Sounds crazy, but it’s true–all those fruits we didn’t always have at home and we couldn’t hold back.  So now, as we’ve learned to tame our sweet tooth, we have to admit there is nothing better than sweet treats that include fruit.  Not only are they packed with amazing sweetness, they’re packed with nutrients too.

 

And these Lemon Wild Blueberry Mini Tarts are to die for (um, yum!).  There’s something about the tart lemon with the sweet Wild Blueberry that just makes our tastebuds dance…they are also packed with incredible phytochemicals such as anthocyanins which prevent or neutralize the damaging effects of free radicals so they keep your cells healthy! These little nuggets are so good, we can’t wait for you to try them! Please let us know what ya think!

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Serves 5

Ingredients:
4 teaspoons frozen Wild Blueberries
1 tablespoon nonfat Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 egg yolk
1 tablespoon sugar
5 mini phyllo shells

For Lemon Yogurt Sauce (optional):
2 tablespoons nonfat Greek yogurt
1/2 tablespoon lemon juice

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Directions:
Preheat oven to 350F.

In a small mixing bowl, whisk together yogurt, lemon juice, egg yolk, and sugar.

Pour mixture into a small sauce pan and simmer on medium heat for about 15 minutes or until the mixture thickens to a gel-like consistency and starts to bubble. Be sure to whisk constantly so that the mixture does not burn in the bottom of the pan. Once the mixture has thickened, remove it from heat.

Next, place the mini phyllo shells either on a nonstick baking sheet or inside nonstick mini muffin pans. Or alternatively, lightly spray a baking sheet with oil and place the shells on the pan. Pour the mixture all the way to top of each phyllo shell. Place 1 teaspoon of Wild Blueberries on top of the mixture in each of the phyllo shells.

Place in the oven for about 10-15 minutes or until the tops start to bubble and thicken.

Remove from oven. Allow to cool enough to remove from pan. Serve warm. Enjoy!

Optional: To make lemon yogurt sauce, mix yogurt with lemon juice and whisk until yogurt becomes a liquid consistency. You can either add a little water or a little more lemon juice if too thick. Drizzle over tarts and enjoy!

Nutrition Facts (per serving): 47 Calories, 1g Fat, 0g Saturated Fat, 8g Carbohydrate, Protein 1g, 0g Fiber, 11mg Sodium, 42mg Cholesterol

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The Nutrition Twins work with the Wild Blueberry Association of North America to help people live healthier lives.

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Microwave Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ever in the mood for an ooey-gooey cookie you don’t have to slave over the stove for?

Um, hello? Who isn’t?! ;)…

As kids, if we heard the word “peanut butter” everyone knew you could count us in.  And nowadays, our favorite indulgence is chocolate–and anything chocolate.  As you can probably imagine, simply marry our two loves and we’re in pure heaven.  :)  Of course, we like to combine peanut butter and chocolate in healthy, lower calorie indulgences that keep our waistlines in tact. ;)  And we gotta admit, when we made this we were a bit beside ourselves with happiness.  Healthy, ooey, gooey goodness that we mixed, mashed and microwaved!  We hope you love these as much as we do.

 

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Microwave Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
Other than the fact this cookie has no added sugar and tastes insanely delish and perfectly sweet, it’s packed with wholesome goodness. You’ve got protein, nutrients and fiber.
Serves: 4 small cookies or 1 large cookie

Ingredients:

1 very ripe banana, mashed
1/2 Tbsp. unsweetened vanilla almond milk
3 Tbsp. rolled oats
1 Tbsp. peanut butter

1-1/2 tablespoons chocolate chips

 

 

Directions:
1. If using an oven rather than microwave, preheat to 375°F.
2. In a medium sized bowl, combine banana, almond milk, and peanut butter, stirring until thoroughly combined. Stir in chocolate chips.
3. If using microwave: For one large cookie, simply spread mixture in bowl and microwave on high for 4-1/2 minutes. If you are making four cookies you can spray a plate, 4 small bowls or 4 ramekins. (The ramekins are nice to keep the cookies contained and perfectly round.)
4. Scoop out about 2-1/2 tablespoons each, and flatten on the plate or in ramekin. Repeat for each ramekin.

5. Place the four ramekins or the one plate in microwave on high for 4 minutes.  Depending on the strength of your microwave cooking time may vary. Simply use a toothpick or a fork and poke cookie the whole way through. *If wetness comes off on fork or toothpick, continue to put back in microwave in 30 second increments until cooked.

If making one big cookie, may want to place plate in fridge or freezer to help “congeal” for a minute after cooking.

*If using oven: Place 2-1/2 Tbsp of mixture on a greased baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven when cooked completely through.

 

Makes 4 Cookies.
Nutrition Facts Per Serving (1 Cookie): 89 Calories, 14 g carbohydrate, 4 g fat, 2 g protein, 25 mg sodium, 2 g fiber

 

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Snacks That Will Keep You Lean and Energized

The holiday season is a time for celebration with family and friends. Unfortunately, there is one unwanted guest that comes sneakily and unannounced, (no, not your crazy Aunt Jean)- weight gain. As we all know, it’s common for people to put on some weight around the holidays, but you don’t have to be one of them!

 

One of the best ways to avoid overindulging is to keep healthy snacks on-hand. By staving off hunger with nutritious, lower calorie snacks, you can be sure that those mall food court pretzels or that slice of pumpkin cheesecake at the office party won’t make you their next victim. Plus, our healthy snack ideas provide you with an extra punch of energy so that you can check off all the activities on that never-ending to-do list. Keep reading for snack ideas that are at the top of the “Nice List”.

 

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  • Cut up vegetables like peppers, celery, carrots, squash and cucumbers and put them in Tupperware on the top shelf of your refrigerator. This is the first thing you’ll see when you open your refrigerator and it should be your first line of defense for healthy snacking. It will fill you up with fiber and nutrients and with very few calories.
    • If you want to dip them, use low-sodium bean dips, low-fat yogurt dips or salsa. Just be sure to limit the portion size of the dip to several tablespoons. Our favorite is red, yellow and orange bell pepper strips. We both snack on them daily and they’re so sweet that no dip is needed!
    • Psssst… Get more healthy veggie recipe ideas in our book, The Nutrition Twin’s Veggie Cure.

 

 

 

  • Keep low-sodium deli slices of turkey and chicken breast in your fridge. It just takes a minute to wrap them around a low-fat string cheese or put a few slices of fresh sliced poultry in a whole wheat pita pocket.
    • The poultry is a lean source protein and is really satisfying.

 

To get the inside scoop on some more of our healthy snacking tips, check out our post on ModernMom. Snacking smart will keep that winter weight from creeping on, and keep you energetic throughout the busy winter months. From shopping sprees to family gatherings, you will need all the energy you can get! There is no better (or tastier) way to fuel all your activities than to get some wholesome nutrition from some lean and clean snacks. Consider it a present to yourself this holiday season- you deserve it!

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Pears With Walnuts and Goat Cheese

 

We admit, it doesn’t take being Sherlock Holmes to realize that it’s tough to eat meals at home with all of the holiday parties this time of year. Although we love eating out, we truly find major comfort in our home-cooked, healthy meals that make us feel incredibly energetic and light. So, to help those of you who are in the same boat, as we help ourselves ;), we have created an appetizer that’s sure to impress at any holiday party, but that’s also healthy, so we all can indulge guilt-free.

 

This app is simple to make, and is the perfect balance of sweet, tangy, crunchy, and creamy. These pear slices are also impressive because each slice, all dressed up, is just 43 calories! (Making them a much lighter option than standard party appetizers.) Putting a platter of these pear slices out on the buffet table will put those pigs-in-a-blanket to shame. And that bowl of chips and dip? Yup, it won’t stand a chance either!

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These pear slices are kind to the waistline, even though they taste oh-so-indulgent. And did we mention how awesome walnuts are?! They are a great source of omega-3 fatty acids to fight inflammation; chronic inflammation causes us to age faster and is at the core of a lot of diseases such as diabetes and heart disease. Walnuts also rock with vitamin E to provide antioxidant power!

 

How about that goat cheese? Goat cheese is a great source of calcium, and it can be lower in fat and calories than cow’s milk cheese. The key to reaping the lower calorie benefit is to select a soft, spreadable goat cheese, rather than a firm cheese. (The extra moisture in the soft cheese is what helps to keep the calories lower.) And for those who have an unpleasant time digesting cow’s milk cheese, you will be happy to hear that goat cheese is easier to digest. It only takes 10 minutes to make these slices, so even the busiest party-goers and throwers will have time to whip up this winning appetizer. You’re welcome! ;)

 

 

Serves 8 (2 slices per person)

 

Ingredients:

2 pears

8 Tbs (16 tsp) Goat Cheese

16 walnut halves

 

Directions:

  1. Cut each pear into 8 slices. Spoon 1 teaspoon of goat cheese onto each pear slice. Top with a walnut halve, and enjoy!

 

Tip: Feel free to get creative by adding herbs and spices to the goat cheese for a burst of flavor. Chives or cinnamon are fantastic options for this recipe.

 

Nutrition Facts per Serving (1 pear slice):

43 Calories    3 g carbohydrate    1 g protein     2.6 g fat   23 mg sodium       2 g sugar

 

Pears With Walnuts and Goat Cheese
 
Prep time

Total time

 

Author:
Serves: 8 servings

Ingredients
  • 2 pears
  • 8 Tbs (16 tsp) Goat Cheese
  • 16 walnut halves

Instructions
  1. Cut each pear into 8 slices.
  2. Spoon 1 teaspoon of goat cheese onto each pear slice.
  3. Top with a walnut halve, and enjoy!

Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 slice Calories: 43 Fat: 2.6 g Carbohydrates: 3 g Sugar: 2 g Sodium: 23 mg Protein: 1 g

 

SpicedHotChoc

Spiced Hot Chocolate

Spiced Hot Chocolate

 

In the season of overindulgence it can be hard to resist the temptation that is all around.

 

With this lightened up recipe, you can still enjoy a delicious and decadent-feeling cup of cocoa without guilt After all, winter without a cup of hot chocolate is like Santa without a sleigh!

 

This Spiced Hot Chocolate calls for cacao, rather than cocoa. Sticking to cacao makes a more nutritious hot chocolate. Traditional cocoa powder is processed in a way that removes most of the nutrients present in the raw cacao bean.

Cacao, (the raw form of the bean that makes chocolate) is packed with phytonutrients, particularly cocoa flavanols which support healthy circulation. This means that aside from promoting cardiovascular health, they improve the flow of oxygen and nutrients to all parts of the body, helping you to perform and feel your best while nourishing your skin, eyes, muscles and all parts of your body—and who doesn’t want that?! Hello gorgeous complexions, energized muscles and strong hearts!

 

An added bonus? The cacao contains minerals like magnesium (important for your bones)copper (to help your body use iron and synthesize collagen) and manganese (also important for collagen and bone growth).

 

This cocoa will have you feeling your best inside and out! Adding warming spices like cloves, nutmeg, and cinnamon makes for the coziest, most flavorful cup of cocoa while also adding a dose of powerful phytonutrients.

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Serves 4

Ingredients:

 

4 cups almond milk (or other milk of choice)

3 Tbs cacao powder (Not cocoa powder)

1 Tbs honey

½ tsp cinnamon

1/8 tsp nutmeg

1/8 tsp cloves

 

Directions:

In a saucepan, heat almond milk until warm. Stir in cacao powder, spices, and honey until thoroughly combined. Serve immediately.

Nutrition:

74 Calories    9g carbs        3g fat              1 g protein     4 g sugar

Spiced Hot Chocolate
 
Prep time

Cook time

Total time

 

Author:
Serves: 4 servings

Ingredients
  • 4 cups almond milk (or other milk of choice)
  • 3 Tbs cacao powder (Not cocoa powder)
  • 1 Tbs honey
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ⅛ tsp nutmeg
  • ⅛ tsp cloves

Instructions
  1. In a saucepan, heat almond milk until warm. Stir in cacao powder, spices, and honey until thoroughly combined. Serve immediately.

Nutrition Information
Serving size: ¼ reccipe Calories: 74 Fat: 3g Carbohydrates: 9g Sugar: 4g Protein: 1g