Main Meals

Eat More to Weigh Less, Really!

If you’re like most of our clients, you’re looking for something you can eat when you’re hungry that won’t cause you to gain weight.  The answer, surprisingly, is something that you can and should eat all of the time.  It’s true; there actually is something that if you eat more of it, it can assist in your weight loss efforts!

 

Veggies!  You may realize that you need more veggies but tend to leave them out of your meals; you’re not alone!  This is one of the most common struggles of health-minded people!  You simply need a little help or encouragement to actually get them!  Once we show our clients how easily vegetables can be deliciously incorporated into their lives, they start to bump up their intake!

 

Check out our 3 Top Reasons you’ll wanna get your veggies:

 

Veggie Bonus #1: Fill up on veggies and you’ll have less room in your stomach for the heavy stuff and you’ll lose weight!

 

Veggie Bonus #2 (a.k.a. our constipation & flat-belly cure): The high water and fiber content of the veggies flushes bloat and waste and brings on a flat belly—oh yeah!

 

Veggie Bonus #3 (a.k.a. our bloat-be-gone cure!): The high water and potassium combination in veggies helps to flush out salt and the extra water and bloat that it holds with it for a flatter belly!

 

The key is to keep the non-starchy veggies (nearly all veggies with the exception of peas, potatoes and corn) low in calories (by avoiding adding sauces or oil) and then you can simply mix steamed veggies into your meal and eat less of the waist-puffing stuff!  This means your plate will be just as full, but there will be less room for the higher-calorie fare and you’ll fill up on lower calorie, veggies! And when you’re hungry, fill up on veggies.  You’ll get more nutrients that keep you healthy and prevent disease and constipation while helping you to eat less of the heavy stuff and lose weight!

 

Check out our top ways to do it below:

Easy Peasy Brussel Sprouts

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  • Before any meal or cocktail party, have a Veggie Pre-Meal™ with a cup of tea. The Veggie Pre-Meal™ is one-and-a-half to two cups of steamed veggies. (See below for ideas and keep foods such as these Easy Peasy Brussel Sprouts on hand). You’ll be in better control around high calorie foods and won’t be overly hungry. It will be easier to resist eating too many of the foods that pack on the pounds because you’ll already be satisfied.
  • At lunch and dinner order (or microwave from frozen at home, if short on time) a side of steamed veggies without added butter or oil. Simply mix them right into whatever dish you’re eating and you’ll add great texture, flavor and color to your meal and the veggies will pick up the flavor from the sauce in the meal.
  • Use our Red, Green and Orange rule to include one red, green or orange vegetable or fruit in every meal. When you concentrate on getting one of these colors at each meal, you won’t forget. Vegetables are an excellent source of disease-fighting nutrients and are high in fiber and low in calories, and great for helping maintain a healthy weight and fighting aging.

 

Colorful_detox_saladColorful Veggie Detox Salad

  • Make/ order omelets, sandwiches, pizzas, wraps and burritos with veggies added
  • Chinese chicken and rice? Pasta and chicken? Mac ‘n cheese? You end up eating less of the heavy stuff and fill your stomach with the lower calorie, fiber-and nutrient packed veggies. Added bonus: If you’re a fan of large helpings you can bag a third of the meal for later and mix the veggies right in the portion you have; you’ll fill your stomach with nutrients and fiber but with fewer calories. This way you won’t feel cheated or deprived because your meal won’t appear smaller, only your waistline will!
  • Use nori or lettuce for traditional sandwiches or wraps rather than carb-rich bread.
  • Eat your rice and other grain-based meals/ snacks by putting them in cups made with veggies-like scooped out tomatoes and bell peppers, zucchini and cucumber boats—these are delicious shells for the dish and help to keep the carb portion in check.
  • Make dips, spreads and salsas with veggies—veggie based dips like these below can double as sauces for grains and meats and are perfect for dipping veggies in.

 

  • If you still feel hungry after eating –or like munching–eat non-starchy vegetables (all vegetables with the exception of peas, potatoes and corn).
    • Go for them raw or steamed with spices, lemon, or flavored vinegars. You can even try our ultra low-calorie recipes like our Easy Crunchy Braised Cabbage, Colorful Detox Salad, Caramelized Cauliflower with Olive Oil & Lemon Juice, Spicy “Fried” Broccoli, and more! As an alternative, try the Kale Recharge Smoothie.
    • Be sure to avoid options that are cooked in butter or any other calorie-loaded item (like many sauces are)—and even in oil (100 calories per little tablespoon!), as they may thwart your weight-loss efforts and defeat the purpose of low-calorie veggies.
    • For dressing options, consider trying this Raspberry Vinaigrette or this Creamy Avocado Yogurt Dressing (stick to the suggested serving sizes) or consider putting your salad dressing in a spray bottle to spritz your dressing on your veggies and disperse the flavor with minimal calories.
    • Try to eat some raw veggies, as current research has shown that a special protein, glutathione, is found in raw veggies and clings to toxins, helping drag them out of the body. For example, enjoy some fresh carrots and sliced bell pepper with hummus!
    • Try these Roasted Detoxifying Veggies!
    • Defrost frozen veggies in the fridge during the day. When you get home, make a quick cold salad by mixing the veggies with one of the dressing options mentioned above or toss them right into a hot meal, as they’ll already be “cooked” and you’ll simply warm them up!

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Spicy “Fried” Broccoli

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Easy Berry Stuffed Egg Crepes

Yes, we admit, even though we’ve been registered dietitians and personal trainers for 15 years and we now know when a nutrition craze deserves the attention,  as teenagers, we fell prey to one of the biggest nutrition “crazes”.   The fat-free trend had us gobbling up fat-free Entenmann’s desserts because we thought fat-free must equal good.  Oy! Thank gosh that’s a thing of the past as we now eat healthy fat-packed avocados like nobody’s business 🙂 …

However, with all of the changes we’ve seen in the nutrition world, one thing that hasn’t changed is that people are constantly looking for a healthy, easy-to-make, satisfying, energy-boosting breakfast that won’t pack on the pounds.  We’ve found that many of the best breakfasts that do just that include eggs.  Eggs are truly one of the easiest, most delicious and nutritious ways to start the morning.  So in honor of eggs, particularly Eggland’s Best eggs and this month being Breast Cancer Awareness month, we whipped up this new recipe. Throughout this entire Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Eggland’s Best, a.k.a. EB (who we are proud spokespeople for!), continues its’ commitment in the fight against breast cancer by helping Susan G. Komen fund critical research, education and raising awareness through its pink EB “stamped” eggs.

This is quite suiting given that EB not only has eggs that are super delicious, their hens are also fed an all-vegetarian feed that causes the eggs to be higher in nutrients that aid in cancer prevention than other eggs (see below)  And this flurry of goodness was the inspiration for our Easy Berry Stuffed Egg Crepes!  Once you try these pups, they’ll be a household regular! 🙂

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Get your forks ready and join us! And in case you’re looking for other cancer-fighting breakfasts that also support these initiatives, here you go!

Tomato, Egg, Spinach & Feta Never Tasted Beta’ Wrap

Sunny Side Eggs on a Portobello “Bagel”

Skinny Breakfast Pizza

Basil Pesto Vegetable Omelet

Mexican Eggs in a Mug

Skinny Eggs Benedict

The Most Satisfying Weight Loss Breakfast

Mini Frittata Muffins

Here’s why this easy, delicious nutrient-packed breakfast helps to fight breast cancer:

The Eggs:

Eggland’s Best eggs are a great way to get that extra boost, because compared to ordinary eggs they are fed a proprietary vegetarian hen feed and have these cancer fighting bonuses:

  • 5X more vitamin D (vitamin D influences virtually every cell in the body and is one of nature’s most potent cancer fighters)
  • Double the omega-3s (help to fight inflammation and support brain and heart health)
  • 10X more vitamin E (protects against cancer, help cells in your body function optimally)
  • 25% less saturated fat (
    diets lower in saturated fat help to minimize risk of breast cancer)

berry_stuffed_crepe_removeberry_stuffed_eggs_honey_cropped1-_logoThe berries:  All of these sweet, yumsters pack in cancer-protection with the phytonutrients

  • All berries (especially strawberries and raspberries), are great sources of ellagic acid, a phytochemical that seems to prevent skin, bladder, lung, esophagus and breast cancer. It appears that ellagic acid has several cancer-fighting actions– it acts as an antioxidant, it helps to deactivate carcinogens in the body and it helps to stall the reproduction of cancer cells.
  • Strawberries also contain flavonoids, which help to neutralize harmful cancer-causing toxins.
  • Blueberries have anthocyanins, which many scientists believe are among the most potent antioxidants yet discovered.

 

 

Easy Berry Stuffed Egg Crepes

This satisfying breakfast will aid your weight loss efforts as it’s filling, nutrient-packed and has only 225 calories with 20 satisfying grams of protein and can be made in under two minutes!

Serves 1

Ingredients:

2 Eggland’s Best eggs (We use Eggland’s Best eggs because they have 25% less saturated fat than other eggs)

1 cup mixed berries (blackberries, blueberries, strawberries)

1 ounce fat free feta (we used Trader Joe’s)

Directions:

  1. To make crepes, use a microwave safe bowl with a wider base. Crack one egg in the bowl and stir it so that it’s mixed thoroughly.  Season with spices of choice.  Microwave for 45 seconds and allow to set for a minute.  Remove bowl from microwave and carefully use a spoon or spatula to remove the “crepe” from the bowl and place on a plate.
  2. Repeat step one with the second egg.
  3. Place half the berries down the center of each crepe. Add feta and roll the crepe. Enjoy!

 

Nutrition Facts per serving (entire recipe): 225 calories, 18 g carbohydrate, 20 g protein, 9 g fat, 2 g saturated fat, 4 g fiber, 396 mg sodium

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The Nutrition Twins work with Eggland’s Best to help people get more nutrients from their food.

Easy Berry Stuffed Egg Crepes
 
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 1
Ingredients
  • Serves 1
  • Ingredients:
  • 2 Eggland’s Best eggs
  • 1 cup mixed berries (blackberries, blueberries, strawberries)
  • 1 ounce fat free feta (we used Trader Joe’s)
Instructions
  1. To make crepes, use a microwave safe bowl with a wider base. Crack one egg in the bowl and stir it so that it’s mixed thoroughly. Season with spices of choice. Microwave for 45 seconds and allow to set for a minute. Remove bowl from microwave and carefully use a spoon or spatula to remove the “crepe” from the bowl and place on a plate.
  2. Repeat step one with the second egg.
  3. Place half the berries down the center of each crepe. Add feta and roll the crepe. Enjoy!
Nutrition Information
Calories: 225 Calories

Avocado Greek Yogurt Chicken Salad

One of the things that always amuses us is the surprised look on our new clients’ faces when they find out that even though we’re twins who are veggie-loving registered dietitians, we love food as much as they do –and that we even have a killer sweet tooth that we work hard to keep in check. If only we were born with our palates not liking anything that was bad for our waistline or for our health! Avoiding chocolate would certainly be a lot easier! And we’d probably spend a lot less time making guilt-free delish numbers like:

Skinny Oreo Balls,

Chocolate Granola Balls

Chocolate Coconut Chia Balls,

Lightened-Up Blueberry Blender Muffins to satisfy us!

We do feel lucky and we’re grateful that there are a few foods (only a few! 😉 ) that aren’t great for the waistline that we’ve never liked. Here’s lookin’ at you mayo! Yup, you creamy white spread that looks like we’d love it as much as spreadable marshmallow fluff was like a kick in the gut each time we tasted it. We know we dodged that bullet as we’ve witnessed clients cut mayo from their daily lunch and drop pounds, literally! The great news is that we’ve a great chicken salad and our mayo alternative can be used in egg salad, tuna salad! Not to mention making your own mayo alternative is a great way to ensure there are no sneaky additives and ingredients!

Avocado2

 

Say hello to this dreamy and creamy Avocado Chicken Salad, made with Greek yogurt! Greek yogurt works it magic here– it’s often substitute for mayonnaise, sour cream, and other similar items that can sneak in fat, carbs, and sugars where they aren’t necessary.

In this recipe we mix Greek yogurt with creamy, nutrient-packed avocados.

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And you can get creative with this as there are so many ways to add your own twists and variations to cater to your own personal tastes! Our recipe is savory, but you can add nuts, grapes, different spices and flavors for a different twis, and you’ll also add nutritional value with the additions that you incorporate. Serve this with whole wheat crackers, carrots, celery sticks, or on sandwiches or wraps (or make use a Collard Wrap like we do here for a low calorie, high –fiber sandwich! This versatile meal is a great source of protein and fiber to keep you powered through long days!

 avocado3

 

Avocado Greek Yogurt Chicken Salad

 

Serves: 4

 

Ingredients:

1 medium sized ripe avocado

1/2 cup non-fat plain Greek Yogurt

2 1/2 cups of shredded, cooked chicken

 

1/2 cup chopped red onion

1/2 cup chopped celery

1/4 tsp dill

1/2 tsp. garlic powder

1/2 tsp. onion powder

salt and pepper to taste

 

Directions

  1. Mash avocado in a medium mixing bowl and then stir .
  2. Add in spices and mix until smooth.-Stir in celery and onion until fully coated in the yogurt mixture.

3. Lastly, add in shredded chicken. Enjoy!

 

Nutrition Information (per serving): 177 Calories: , 8 g fat, 6 g carbohydrate, 20 g protein, 3 g fiber, 136 mg sodium

avocado_greek_yogurt_chick_sal_collage

Avocado Greek Yogurt Chicken Salad
 
Author:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • Ingredients:
  • 1 medium sized ripe avocado
  • ½ cup non-fat plain Greek Yogurt
  • 2½ cups of shredded, cooked chicken
  • ½ cup chopped red onion
  • ½ cup chopped celery
  • ¼ tsp dill
  • ½ tsp. garlic powder
  • ½ tsp. onion powder
  • salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Mash avocado in a medium mixing bowl and then stir .
  2. Add in spices and mix until smooth.-Stir in celery and onion until fully coated in the yogurt mixture.
  3. Lastly, add in shredded chicken. Enjoy!
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 serving Calories: 177 Fat: 8 g Carbohydrates: 6 g Sodium: 136 mg Fiber: 3 g Protein: 20 g

 

 

Black Bean Patties

  Black Bean Patties

 Black_bean_cakes_LOGO

 

…aka Black Bean Love Cakes. 🙂 That’s right, we’re in love with these lil’ cakes and can’t wait for you to fall head over taste bud after them too. We’re not quite sure why it is that eating food in the shape of a patty or a muffin just makes it that much more fun. But it does—and when we were growing up when our mom would make her Black Bean patties, we loved eating the little cakes—and we loved our contribution to helping her make them—shaping them into the patties, even as small kids we remember loving this assignment she’s give us. And now we’ve cooked up a tasty and super-satisfying Black Bean Patty version, inspired by our mom’s!

Psst… looking for a few more recipes inspired by our wholesome, cook-it-from-scratch mom? Check these out!

One-Pot Quinoa Chickpea & Avocado Bowl

Coconut Quinoa Chicken Nuggets

One-Pot Black Bean Quinoa Chili with Avocado

Quinoa Breakfast Nibbles

Choco-nilla Oats & Quinoa Swirl

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If you’re looking to have a few more meals that are great for Meatless Monday, this patty will hook you up. This clean and delicious alternative to a greasy burger leaves you fully fueled and satisfied, and provides an excellent sources of fiber to stabilize your blood sugar and nutrients like magnesium and potassium to help to relax your muscles and lower your blood pressure. You can top these patties with avocado and salsa for a Mexican twist, or eat them on a whole grain bun for more of a hands-on burger feel! Pair them up with a nice salad or steamed veggies and if you eat it bun-less, add some healthy carbs like these Roasted Tarragon Sweet Potato Fries. Grab a plate, and a patty and dig in! 😉

 

 

 

blackbean5Black Bean Patties (aka Black Bean Love Cakes 😉 ):

Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • salt and pepper, to taste

 

  • 15oz black beans, rinsed and drained
  • ¾ cup cooked brown rice

 

  • ½ cup corn
  • ¼ cup cilantro, chopped
  • 4 ounce low fat swiss cheese, for melting on top

 

Directions

  1. Heat 1 tsp olive oil in a large soup pot.
  2. Saute the onion, bell pepper and garlic in the olive oil, until translucent.
  3. cumin, chili powder, salt, and pepper and stir to mix thoroughly.Cook for 2 minutes to allow the flavors to meld together.
  4. Add beans and rice, cooking for five more minutes over medium , stirring frequently.
  5. Remove pot from heat and empty rice and bean mixture into a bowl, stir in the corn, and let cool.
  6. Once cooled, add cilantro and mash the contents of the bowl until a near paste-like consistency is made.
  7. Divide into four portions and shape into a patty. Refrigerate patties for 15 minutes.
  8. Add 1 tsp olive oil to saute pan and heat over medium heat.
  9. Place each patty on the pan, and cook 4-5 minutes on each side until both sides have browned and place slice of cheese on top each patty and allow to melt.

 

Nutrition Information per serving (1 patty): 196 Calories, 5g Fat, 14g Protein, 21g Carbohydrates, 267mg Sodium, 7.5g Fiber

Black Bean Patties
 
Author:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 15oz black beans, rinsed and drained
  • ¾ cup cooked brown rice
  • ½ cup corn
  • ¼ cup cilantro
  • 4 oz low fat swiss cheese, for melting on top
Instructions
  1. Heat 1 tsp olive oil in a large soup pot.
  2. Saute the onion, bell pepper and garlic in the olive oil, until translucent.
  3. cumin, chili powder, salt, and pepper and stir to mix thoroughly.Cook for 2 minutes to allow the flavors to meld together.
  4. Add beans and rice, cooking for five more minutes over medium , stirring frequently.
  5. Remove pot from heat and empty rice and bean mixture into a bowl, stir in the corn, and let cool.
  6. Once cooled, add cilantro and mash the contents of the bowl until a near paste-like consistency is made.
  7. Divide into four portions and shape into a patty. Refrigerate patties for 15 minutes.
  8. Add 1 tsp olive oil to saute pan and heat over medium heat.
  9. Place each patty on the pan, and cook 4-5 minutes on each side until both sides have browned and place slice of cheese on top each patty and allow to melt.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 patties Calories: 196 Fat: 5 g Carbohydrates: 21 g Sodium: 267 mg Fiber: 7.5 g Protein: 14 g

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Healthy Back to School Bites with Cranberries

If you’ve read our other blogs, by now you know it’s no secret that although we’re veggie-loving twin sisters, registered dietitians and personal trainers who are lucky to like a lot of healthy foods, we both also have a wicked sweet tooth that we work hard to keep in check.  Fortunately, we’ve got many strategies as wells as delicious, waistline friendly ways to satisfy our sweet canines that work for our clients, too!

One of our favorite, satisfying, healthy and most effective ways to squash a sweet craving is with treats made from fruit.  This actually is something we learned from our wholesome, plant-based, cook-everything-from-scratch mom, as she often served us desserts made from fruit and it worked like magic to quell our sweet cravings!  Apparently the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree as we do the same thing for Tammy’s daughters.  We find this technique to be especially helpful when the kids go back to school, as they always seem to come home from school and want a sweet treat for a snack.  One of our most requested after-school snacks is a Cranberry Smoothie which is a cool, delicious and healthy guilt-free snack that feels like a super indulgent treat.

And our clients who serve this to their kids feel good knowing that this nutritious, sweet-tooth satisfying snack fits perfectly with the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, which recommend choosing nutrient dense foods packed with vitamins, minerals, fiber and other naturally occurring compounds that may improve health.  Cranberries, like in this Cranberry Smoothie, are the perfect example of a nutrient dense food, as they’re packed with naturally occurring unique health-promoting flavonoids called PACs.  Because of these nutrient superstars, the Dietary Guidelines for Americans have made an exception for naturally tart, low-sugar foods, like cranberries, that may be sweetened to improve taste.  They explain that there is room in a healthy eating pattern for nutrient dense foods with added sugars, such as cranberries and rhubarb, as long as calories from added sugar are less than 10% per day.  In this smoothie, just a teaspoon of honey is added to each serving and it packs in the nutrients in just 150 calories—woot, woot!

 

 

 

 

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Cranberry Smoothie            

Serve this healthy, sugar-tooth satisfying alternative to sweets for an after school snack.  Or simply sip a serving of this for a healthy dessert.

Yield: 6 servings

 

Ingredients

2 cups frozen cranberries

2 cups nonfat vanilla yogurt (try different yogurts, such as Greek yogurt)

2 cups 1% milk or almond milk

2 Tbsp. honey

2 tsp. vanilla

 

Directions

Mix in blender until smooth.

Nutrition Information Per Serving*: Calories 150, Calories From Fat 10, Saturated Fat 0.5g, Trans Fat 0g, Total Fat 1g, Cholesterol 5mg, Sodium 105mg, Total Carbohydrate 28g, Sugars 24g, Dietary Fiber 1g, Protein 7g, Vitamin A 10%, Vitamin C 10%, Calcium 25%, Iron 0%

*With 1% Milk

Hungry for Cranberries at lunch? Your kids will gobble up this unique, sweet and savory sandwich!

Recipe courtesy of the Cranberry Marketing Committee

Cran_Chic_SalFlatB.006 - Cropped

 

Cranberries can be a great fit as part of a healthy lunch – like in this tangy chicken salad!

Cranberry Chicken Salad on Flatbread

Makes 8 servings

Portion: ½ cup chicken salad on 1 flatbread roll

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 5 minutes

 

Ingredients

1 cup dried cranberries

⅓ cup 100% cranberry juice

½ cup reduced-fat mayonnaise (we suggest using nonfat Greek yogurt to keep the creaminess and up the nutrients and lower the fat)

⅓ cup fat-free poppy seed dressing

8 oz. grilled white chicken meat, diced

1 cup sliced celery

¾ cup thinly sliced scallions

2 cups shredded fresh spinach

8 flatbread rolls, split

 

Directions

  1. Place cranberries and cranberry juice in a saucepan and heat slightly. Remove from heat, cool to room temperature. Cranberries will absorb all liquid. Hold.
  2. In a bowl, whisk together mayonnaise and dressing.
  3. Stir in diced chicken, celery and scallions. Toss well to coat. Stir in reserved cranberries and mix well. Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours before serving.
  4. To Serve: For each serving, place ¼ cup spinach onto a split flatbread roll and portion ½ cup salad on top of spinach. Replace top and serve.

Variations: Use additional fruits, including fresh mango, pineapple, melon, blueberries, peaches, pears, etc. in salad.

Nutrition Information Per Serving: Calories 390, Calories from Fat 100, Saturated Fat 2g, Trans Fat 0g, Total Fat 12g, Cholesterol 20mg, Sodium 800mg, Total Carbohydrate 57g, Sugars 17g, Dietary Fiber 3g, Protein 13g, Vitamin A 20%, Vitamin C 15%, Calcium 10%, Iron 20%

Hungry for more recipes? uscranberries.com

The Nutrition Twins work with US Cranberries to help teach people how they can get more beneficial PACs in their diet.

 

Cranberry Chicken Salad on Flatbread
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • ⅓ cup 100% cranberry juice
  • ½ cup reduced-fat mayonnaise (we suggest using nonfat Greek yogurt to keep the creaminess and up the nutrients and lower the fat)
  • ⅓ cup fat-free poppy seed dressing
  • 8 oz. grilled white chicken meat, diced
  • 1 cup sliced celery
  • ¾ cup thinly sliced scallions
  • 2 cups shredded fresh spinach
  • 8 flatbread rolls, split
Instructions
  1. Place cranberries and cranberry juice in a saucepan and heat slightly. Remove from heat, cool to room temperature. Cranberries will absorb all liquid. Hold.
  2. In a bowl, whisk together mayonnaise and dressing.
  3. Stir in diced chicken, celery and scallions. Toss well to coat. Stir in reserved cranberries and mix well. Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours before serving.
  4. To Serve: For each serving, place ¼ cup spinach onto a split flatbread roll and portion ½ cup salad on top of spinach. Replace top and serve.
  5. Variations
  6. : Use additional fruits, including fresh mango, pineapple, melon, blueberries, peaches, pears, etc. in salad.

Roasted Tarragon Garlic Sweet Potato “Fries”

You probably know that we’re veggie loving twin sisters, registered dietitians and personal trainers who happen to a killer sweet tooth that we work hard to keep in check, so it’s pretty much a given that if it’s sweet, creamy comfort food—and it’s healthy, to boot, we’ll be all over it!  J  And if you read our latest book The Nutrition Twins Veggie Cure  you know that some of our favorite childhood memories include our family meal times centered around our Mom’s home cooking. Pssst…you may remember these meals were inspired by our mom’s weeknight dinners–

Lentil Vegetable Soup

Creamy Cauliflower Mac ‘n Cheese

Skinny Mash

Skinny Mac and Cheese

Spaghetti Squash with Tomato Sauce and Parmesan Cheese

Sitting down to Mom’s food always made us happy– it was soothing and lifted our spirits if we were ever upset and we each have memories of sitting at the table and enjoying one of our favorite comfort foods: sweet potatoes.
0005_NutritionTwins-sweetpotato-tarragon-garlic-fries_logo

 

Great news if you think you can’t eat carbs:

Anti-carb? Not these registered dietitian nutritionists! Whew!  We’re all for quality, high fiber, wholesome carbs in moderate portions at your meals (about half a cup) for health and for weight loss!  The moment our clients hear that they can eat a sweet potato, they light up.  The carbohydrates in sweet potatoes come with fiber, loads of phytonutrients and in a virtually fat free package (as long as you avoid those high-calorie toppings!).

Eating sweet potatoes doesn’t cause your energy to come crashing down as many other carbohydrates do.  The fiber in the potato causes the glucose from the carbohydrates to enter your blood stream at a slower and more gradual rate, helping keep your energy level stable and aiding in the prevention of mood swings and cravings that come with energy highs and lows.  The fiber also allows for a longer, more sustained serotonin (i.e. happy) surge.  One small sweet potato contains nearly 4 grams of fiber, and the fiber in sweet potatoes keeps you regular, light and happy. Thank you fiber!

We’re so excited about these “fries”—if you’re a “lov-ah” of fries, these are a waistline-friendly, healthy version– so enjoy these! Simply sub a serving of these for the other carbs at your meal.

Roasted_Taragon_Garlic_Fries_Collage

Some more health bonuses in these bites? You bet!

 

Sweet potato:  You may see these called yams at the store, and if so, it’s likely a sweet potato as that’s what they typically sell at most markets in the US. Sweet potatoes with ‘gold’ or ‘red’ in their names typically have orange colored flesh.

 

Your face won’t be the only part of you smiling when you eat these pups!  Sweet potatoes:

  • contain two very potent antioxidants– carotenoids (including beta carotene) and sporamins which fight everything from the negative health consequences that come with aging to almost all types of disease.
  •  fight inflammation. Eat a sweet potato and research shows that inflammation in the body immediately decreases, especially in the brain and nerve tissues throughout the body.
  •   offer great promise when it comes to Type 2 Diabetes.

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Other super stars in this recipe:

Tarragon (Mexican Tarragon) has a somewhat licorice-like flavor (should’ve known Lyssie’d be a fan with her fennel love—that is often described as tasting like licorice!) and has a light flavor compared to French Tarragon, either can be used.

  • Great source of poly-phenolic compounds—plant nutrients that help to fight inflammation and that help to achieve optimal health
  • help lower blood sugar

 

Garlic. You’ve  probably heard that this great-smelling (when you’re cooking it!) show-stopper is beneficial for the cardiovascular system.  So it keeps your ticker healthy and your blood pressure, too.  And it helps to calm your body internally as its got powerful anti-inflammatory properties.

 

You’ll flip for these “fries”!

0004_NutritionTwins-sweetpotato-tarragon-garlic-fries_logo

 

Roasted Tarragon Garlic Sweet Potato “Fries”

 You can make these pups into fries or if you prefer them as a side dish you can make ‘em into nips (aka cubes, see directions below).  Serve with lean protein like grilled chicken breast, with other roasted non-starchy veggies (or with steamed ones, or veggies in a salad if you prefer.)

 

Serves 2

Ingredients

 

1 large sweet potato

1 ¾ teaspoons extra virgin olive oil

¼ teaspoon minced garlic

Pinch dried tarragon

Sea salt to taste, optional

Sprig of fresh tarragon, leaves for garnish (optional)

 

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Place parchment paper on baking sheet.
  1. Combine olive oil, garlic and tarragon. Set aside while preparing sweet potato.
  1. Cut sweet potato into French fry shaped spears, about 3 inches long by ¼ inch wide or evenly sized cubes—we call these golden nuggets, nips (if serving as a side dish).
  1. Toss cut sweet potato with olive oil, garlic and tarragon mixture.
  1. Bake in oven for approximately 20 minutes, turning potatoes, at 10 minute intervals to prevent burning. Roast until golden brown on all sides.
  1. Remove from oven, sprinkle with dash of salt, if using and fresh tarragon leaves (optional).

0001_NutritionTwins-sweetpotato-tarragon-garlic-fries_logo

Nutrition Facts Per 2 Serving: 92 Calories, 4 g Fat, 1 g Saturated Fat, 0 mg Cholesterol, 36 mg Sodium, 13 g Carbohydrate, 2 g Fiber, 3 g Sugar, 1 g Protein

Roasted Tarragon Garlic Sweet Potato “Fries”
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • 1 large sweet potato
  • 1 ¾ teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
  • ¼ teaspoon minced garlic
  • Pinch dried tarragon
  • Sea salt to taste, optional
  • Sprig of fresh tarragon, leaves for garnish (optional)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Place parchment paper on baking sheet.
  2. Combine olive oil, garlic and tarragon. Set aside while preparing sweet potato.
  3. Cut sweet potato into French fry shaped spears, about 3 inches long by ¼ inch wide or evenly sized cubes—we call these golden nuggets, nips (if serving as a side dish).
  4. Toss cut sweet potato with olive oil, garlic and tarragon mixture.
  5. Bake in oven for approximately 20 minutes, turning potatoes, at 10 minute intervals to prevent burning. Roast until golden brown on all sides.
  6. Remove from oven, sprinkle with dash of salt, if using and fresh tarragon leaves (optional).
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 potato/ 2 servings Calories: 92 Fat: 4 g Saturated fat: 1 g Carbohydrates: 13 g Sugar: 3 g Sodium: 36 mg Fiber: 2 g Protein: 1 g Cholesterol: 0 mg