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Kiwi & Olive Quinoa with Cranberries and Feta

A big fat cooking rut.  I, Lyssie, was in one.  Yes, even this registered dietitian and one of The Nutrition Twins who loves to cook got stuck in one.  And thanks to two generous samples- #zesprikiwifruit and #organicgrain (organicgrains.com) and an urge to instantly marry the two in one dish, I’ve been set free!  Having these delicious and healthy ingredients forced me out of my healthy, in a hurry “go-to meals “and got my creative juices flowing once again and gave me the ammunition to make a new, quickie and healthy alternative!  And thank gosh, I’m B-A-C-K! 🙂

It feels great to be back in the “mode”, whipping up light, summer-inspired dishes that don’t require slaving over the stove.  After all, summer is my favorite season and fresh summer produce is so much fun to take advantage of.  Quinoa (the wholesome, protein and fiber-packed grain) is perfect for summer since it’s light and satisfying and makes me think of the Mediterranean and of olives.  I know olives aren’t necessarily a summer food for most, but for me, I immediately think “olives” and summer are a pair.  I live in New York City and I get my olives at Fairway or Zabars from the big barrels.  Shopping with winter coats and gloves and scarves are not how I envision shopping for olives, rather in a summery tank top and shorts scream olives to me! J

Tammy and I always say “O-live for olives”.  Translation: I live for olives. 😉  Olives not only a source of good-for-you, mono-unsaturated fats, they also contain powerful antioxidants and anti-inflammatories that protect the cardiovascular system, respiratory system, nervous system, musculoskeletal system, immune system, inflammatory system, and digestive system—and help to prevent cancer!

Kiwi (in this recipe we used Sungold kiwi, which is a new, golden-fleshed variety.  It’s got a refreshing sweet taste with just a hint of sour—and just like other kiwi fruit, it’s packed with vitamin C that helps your skin to glow as it enhances collagen formation, making your skin more elastic so it can appear more youthful.  And it’s got fiber to help keep your digestive tract constipation and bloat-free!

Briny olives, sweet kiwi and chewy cranberries with salty feta and satisfying quinoa—this dish packs flavor with a nutritional punch.

Photo taken pre-feta

 

Kiwi & Olive Quinoa with Cranberries and Feta

Serve this light, satisfying number with a chopped salad of cucumber and tomato or with a side of steamed broccoli.

 

Serves 4

Ingredients

3/4 cup uncooked quinoa or 1-1/2 cups cooked quinoa (we used Organic Grains from their generous mailing delivery)

1-1/2 cup water

3/4 Tbsp. olive oil

3/4 cup Kalamata olives

3/4 Tbsp. red wine vinegar

3/4 Tbsp. fresh lime or lemon juice (alternatively, you can substitute this for 3/4 Tbsp. red wine vinegar)

15.5 ounce can, chick peas, (ideally low salt, we use Trader Joe’s Organic chickpeas which are lower in sodium than most, 140 mg/serving))

Pink Himalayan sea salt, ground to taste, optional

 

1/4 cup dried cranberries

3 ounces fat-free crumbled feta

2 tsps. fresh ginger, finely grated, optional

2 Zespri kiwis, sliced and quartered

 

Directions:

  1. If using uncooked quinoa, prepare quinoa by adding to a medium sauce pan with 1-1/2 cups water and bring to a boil. Lower heat, cover and simmer until tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed (about 15 to 20 minutes). Fluff with a fork.
  2. Mix olive oil, vinegar and lime juice (or lemon juice, if you opt for that) together.
  3. Pour over quinoa and stir in well. Drain about one-quarter of the liquid in the can of the chickpeas out and pour chickpeas into quinoa.  Grind salt to taste in quinoa and chickpea mixture.
  4. Stir in cranberries, feta and ginger. Gently fold in kiwi.  Serve warm or chilled! Enjoy!

Nutrition facts per serving:

355 Calories, 9 g fat, 1 g saturated fat, 15 g protein, 53 g carbohydrate, 9 g fiber, 314 mg sodium

OrganicGrains.com and Zespri Kiwifruit both sent The Nutrition Twins samples that were used in the creation of this meal!

Kiwi & Olive Quinoa with Cranberries and Feta
 
Author:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • Ingredients
  • ¾ cup uncooked quinoa or 1-1/2 cups cooked quinoa (we used Organic Grains from their generous mailing delivery)
  • 1-1/2 cup water
  • ¾ Tbsp. olive oil
  • ¾ cup Kalamata olives
  • ¾ Tbsp. red wine vinegar
  • ¾ Tbsp. fresh lime or lemon juice (alternatively, you can substitute this for ¾ Tbsp. red wine vinegar)
  • 15.5 ounce can, chick peas, (ideally low salt, we use Trader Joe’s Organic chickpeas which are lower in sodium than most, 140 mg/serving))
  • Pink Himalayan sea salt, ground to taste, optional
  • ¼ cup dried cranberries
  • 3 ounces fat-free crumbled feta
  • 2 tsps. fresh ginger, finely grated, optional
  • 2 Zespri kiwis, sliced and quartered
Instructions
  1. Directions:
  2. If using uncooked quinoa, prepare quinoa by adding to a medium sauce pan with 1-1/2 cups water and bring to a boil. Lower heat, cover and simmer until tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed (about 15 to 20 minutes). Fluff with a fork.
  3. Mix olive oil, vinegar and lime juice (or lemon juice, if you opt for that) together.
  4. Pour over quinoa and stir in well. Drain about one-quarter of the liquid in the can of the chickpeas out and pour chickpeas into quinoa. Grind salt to taste in quinoa and chickpea mixture.
  5. Stir in cranberries, feta and ginger. Gently fold in kiwi. Serve warm or chilled! Enjoy!
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 serving Calories: 355 Fat: 9 g Saturated fat: 1 g Carbohydrates: 53 g Sodium: 314 mg Fiber: 9 g Protein: 15 g

 

Veggie Bean Salad with Dijon Vinaigrette

As registered dietitians, one of the most fun things for us to do is bust myths that many people have in their head when they think of healthy eating and weight loss. In fact, when we give seminars, we often have participants shout out what comes to their mind when they think of healthy eating for weight loss. Guess what words repeatedly come up? “Boring”, “deprivation”, “hungry”, “Celery” and “rice cakes”. Really?!!

 You betcha! That’s what people think! The great news is that these twin, veggie-loving registered dietitians (who also have a big sweet tooth! ;)) and who pride themselves in their healthy eating habits, haven’t eaten a rice cake since they tried one (we found them tasteless and boring!); don’t eat celery that often (there are so many awesome veggies so we’ don’t have so much room to squeeze celery in ;)), and don’t deprive themselves of small portions of their favorite indulgences (a small piece of chocolate is something we enjoy most days!). So, if you follow us around for a day, you’d know that healthy eating doesn’t equal “boring”, “deprivation”, “hungry” and “rice cakes”. And in fact, it’s quite the opposite. And just to give you a taste of what we mean, we’ve created our

Avacado and Lentil Vegan Tacos

Lime Shrimp with Coconut Rice

Grilled Cheese on Crispy Cauliflower Bread

and now this non-ordinary, super satisfying salad!

 Fresh_Bean_Salad_Logo

Looking for a salad that actually feels satisfying and that reaps mega health benefits without feeling like your chowing on a mound of lettuce? Then this recipe has your name written all over it! Bursting with more flavor than your typical bean salad, this recipe has hints of balsamic vinaigrette and Dijon mustard to spice things up. It’s also packed with an assortment of veggies, not to mention a lot of protein to keep you feeling satisfied.

 

Veggie Bean Salad with Dijon Vinaigrette

Veggie Bean_2 

This makes the perfect satisfying snack that can be made in a large batch, stored in the fridge, and saved for later to eat “on demand” 😉 and on-the-go because we know you are busy and will love having a scrumptious, healthy snack to grab!

 

Makes 8 servings (1 cup each)

Ingredients

1, 15.5 ounce can black beans

1, 15.5 ounce can white kidney beans

1, 15.5 ounce can kidney beans

1 stalk of celery, diced (1/2 cup)

1 cup cucumber, diced

1/2 cup red pepper, diced

1/2 cup orange pepper, diced

1/2 cup carrots, cut in coins

 

For dressing:

1/3 cup balsamic vinegar

2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil

2 Tbsp Dijon mustard

1 Tbsp pomegranate juice

 

Directions:

  1. Drain and rinse beans thoroughly and place in large mixing bowl.
  2. Add the peppers, cucumber, carrots, and celery to the beans in the mixing bowl.
  3. In a small bowl mix balsamic vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, mustard, and pomegranate.
  4. Add the dressing to the veggies in the large bowl and mix gently until the mixture is uniform.
  5. Enjoy and save the leftovers for an on the go snack!

 

Nutrition Information Per serving

102 calories, 28 g carbs, 5 g fat, 0.5 g saturated fat, 8 g protein, 194 mg sodium, 8 g fiber

Veggie Bean Salad_1

Veggie Bean Salad with Dijon Vinaigrette
 
Author:
Serves: 8
Ingredients
  • 1, 15.5 ounce can black beans
  • 1, 15.5 ounce can white kidney beans
  • 1, 15.5 ounce can kidney beans
  • 1 stalk of celery, diced (1/2 cup)
  • 1 cup cucumber, diced
  • ½ cup red pepper, diced
  • ½ cup orange pepper, diced
  • ½ cup carrots, cut in coins
Instructions
  1. Drain and rinse beans thoroughly and place in large mixing bowl.
  2. Add the peppers, cucumber, carrots, and celery to the beans in the mixing bowl.
  3. In a small bowl mix balsamic vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, mustard, and pomegranate.
  4. Add the dressing to the veggies in the large bowl and mix gently until the mixture is uniform.
  5. Enjoy and save the leftovers for an on the go snack!
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 serving Calories: 102 Fat: 5 g Saturated fat: 0.5 g Carbohydrates: 28 g Sodium: 194 mg Fiber: 8 g Protein: 8 g

 

One-Pot Black Bean Quinoa Chili with Avocado

This was one of those meals I just wanted to make in a hurry and had no idea that I would be stumbling upon what would be one of my new favorite go-to meals…

One_pot_bbean_quinoa_chili_avocado

We’ve been craving hearty comfort food with the start of colder weather—and you’ve been asking for some healthy, easy weeknight meals that are cozy comfort food. And many of you have requested quinoa recipes! We love quinoa too, that’s why we decided to marry the two and make this satisfying yumster! Get ready to dive in. This is so easy to make, it’s the perfect weeknight meal. You throw it in one pot and dinner’s on in less than a half hour! We still can’t get over how easy, and how scrumptious this one-pot wonder is. Woohoo!  🙂

 

 

One_pot_bbean_quinoa_chili_avocado31

 

Psst…if you want more comfort foods done right and light ;), we’ve tried to pack this site with them! Give one of these a whirl:
Skinny Mash
Creamy Guiltless Tomato Rigatoni 
Spaghetti Squash with Tomato Sauce and Parmesan Cheese

 

One-Pot Black Bean Quinoa Chili with Avocado

We suggest serving this scrumptious Meatless Monday meal with a large salad or some steamed broccoli or another of your favorite veggie meals.  We love it with our Caramelized Cauliflower.
Serves 4

Ingredients:
½ tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
¾ cup white quinoa
1, 13.4 ounce can black beans, organic, low sodium
14 ounce can diced tomatoes

fresh cracked pepper

salt to taste
1 small avocado, garnish
Directions:
1. In a medium pan, heat olive oil over low heat and add cumin and chili powder. Stir for 30 seconds until fragrant.
2. Add quinoa, tomatoes, black beans (not drained) and 1 cup of water to the pot. Season with pepper and salt, if using.
3. Bring mixture to a boil. Then reduce heat to a simmer and cover. Heat for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until quinoa is cooked. It should be soft. Most of the water will be absorbed and you will have a thick, delicious, hearty chili. Slice avocado and place on top and serve.
Nutrition Facts Per Serving, without avocado: 255 calories, 4 g fat, 42 g carbohydrate, 14 g protein, 8 g fiber, 263 mg sodium, 0 g saturated fat

Nutrition Facts Per Serving, with 1 ounce avocado: 300 calories, 8 g fat, 42 g carbohydrate, 15 g protein, 8 g fiber, 263 mg sodium, 0g saturated fat

One-Pot Black Bean Quinoa Chili with Avocado
 
Author:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • Ingredients:
  • ½ tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • ¾ cup white quinoa
  • 1, 13.4 ounce can black beans, organic, low sodium
  • 14 ounce can diced tomatoes
  • fresh cracked pepper
  • salt to taste
  • 1 small avocado, garnish
Instructions
  1. Directions:
  2. In a medium pan, heat olive oil over low heat and add cumin and chili powder. Stir for 30 seconds until fragrant.
  3. Add quinoa, tomatoes, black beans (not drained) and 1 cup of water to the pot. Season with pepper and salt, if using.
  4. Bring mixture to a boil. Then reduce heat to a simmer and cover. Heat for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until quinoa is cooked. It should be soft. Most of the water will be absorbed and you will have a thick, delicious, hearty chili. Slice avocado and place on top and serve.
Notes
Nutrition Facts Per Serving, with 1 ounce avocado: 300 calories, 8 g fat, 42 g carbohydrate, 15 g protein, 8 g fiber, 263 mg sodium, 0g saturated fat
Nutrition Information
Serving size: without 1 ounce avocado Calories: 255 Fat: 4 g Carbohydrates: 42 g Sodium: 263 Fiber: 8 g Protein: 14 g

One_pot_bbean_quinoa_chili_avocado28

Black Bean & Avocado Pasta with Lime

Black Bean & Avocado Pasta with Lime4
Because sometimes, you just need a lil’ pasta! Especially if you’ve been thrown some lemons or limes! 😉

Psst…if you want more comfort foods done right and light ;), we’ve tried to pack this site with them! Give one of these a whirl:
Skinny Mash
Creamy Guiltless Tomato Rigatoni 
Spaghetti Squash with Tomato Sauce and Parmesan Cheese

Black Bean & Avocado Pasta with Lime

This dish really just hits the spot when you want a lil’ pasta! Creamy from the avocado, this feels rich and decadent. And at only 275 calories for the entire meal, not bad for those who are afraid of the calories adding up! Some people may prefer this a tad sweeter–if so, be sure to use a fruity vinegar and you could sprinkle a tad more sugar or stevia.  We suggest rounding this out with a nice fresh and crunchy salad. Enjoy!

Serves 4
Ingredients
4 ounces whole wheat rigatoni
Juice ½ lime (or lemon)
2 teaspoon sugar or stevia
1 tsp vinegar (wine vinegar or fruity vinegar work well)
1 Tbsp olive oil, and olive oil in a spray container for spritzing
1 cup spinach or kale
1 can black beans
½ large avocado, chopped
1 large tomato chopped
Sea Salt to taste
Cracked pepper

 

Directions
1. Prepare pasta according to pacakage directions
2. Mix lime juice, vinegar, stevia, and teaspoon of olive oil in small bowl.
3. Place spinach in the pasta strainer. When pasta is ready pour into the strainer to melt spinach as water pours through. Rinse pasta and spinach quickly under cool water and pour in a large bowl and spritz with olive oil.
4. Add beans, avocado and tomato and stir in with pasta to combine.
5. Pour lime mixture over pasta and thoroughly mix. Spritz with oil if desired and add salt and pepper to taste. Enjoy!
Nutrition Facts Per Serving: 274 Calories, 42 g carbohydrate, 9 g fat, 12 g protein, 1 g saturated fat, 10 g fiber
Black Bean & Avocado Pasta with Lime4B

 

Black Bean & Avocado Pasta with Lime
 
Nutrition Facts Per Serving: 274 Calories, 42 g carbohydrate, 9 g fat, 12 g protein, 1 g saturated fat, 10 g fiber
Author:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 4 ounces whole wheat rigatoni
  • Juice ½ lime (or lemon)
  • 2 teaspoon sugar or stevia
  • 1 tsp vinegar (wine vinegar or fruity vinegar work well)
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil, and olive oil in a spray container for spritzing
  • 1 cup spinach or kale
  • 1 can black beans
  • ½ large avocado, chopped
  • 1 large tomato chopped
  • Sea Salt to taste
  • Cracked pepper
Instructions
  1. Prepare pasta according to pacakage directions
  2. Mix lime juice, vinegar, stevia, and teaspoon of olive oil in small bowl.
  3. Place spinach in the pasta strainer. When pasta is ready pour into the strainer to melt spinach as water pours through. Rinse pasta and spinach quickly under cool water and pour in a large bowl and spritz with olive oil.
  4. Add beans, avocado and tomato and stir in with pasta to combine.
  5. Pour lime mixture over pasta and thoroughly mix. Spritz with oil if desired and add salt and pepper to taste. Enjoy!

Black Bean, Kiwi & Corn Salad with Wine Vinaigrette

This salad is scrumptious—the perfect combo of sweet, savory and crunchy. It’s best served super cold and it’s so satisfying you’ll never find yourself needing to nosh afterwards.
It makes a fabulous meal for Meatless Monday—it’s got 12 grams of protein and 11 grams of fiber—woot, woot!

We know, who would have thought to put kiwi in? We oddly enough did! And we couldn’t be more excited about it! It brings this salad to a whole new level. This is the kind of deal you can bring to your 4th of July celebration and it tastes so good that no one will ever feel like they’re eating something that is super healthy! Yes, this salad rocks! Psst—a few secrets are nonfat yogurt, pistachios and red wine vinegar.

Black_bean_Kiwi_zucchini_dressing
Black Bean, Kiwi & Corn Salad and Wine Vinaigrette
Prep time: 15 minutes
Yields: 4 servings

Ingredients:

Dressing:
• 4 Tbsp plain nonfat yogurt
• 10 finely chopped, shelled, raw pistachios
• 1/2 tsp olive oil
• 3 Tsp red wine vinegar
• Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Salad:
• 1, 16 ounce bag of organic frozen corn, mostly defrosted
• 1, 15.5 ounce can black beans, refrigerated
• 1 kiwi
• 2-3 Roma Tomatoes
3 zucchini (for the boats)
Black_bean_Kiwi_salad_ingredients
Directions:
Dressing:
1. Place the yogurt, pistachios, oil and vinegar in a small bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside.
Salad:
1. If you didn’t allow the corn to defrost the corn in the fridge, place it in the microwave and defrost according to the package directions. We recommend just making sure it’s not frozen, but leaving it very chilled.
2. Toss the corn, beans, kiwi and tomatoes with the dressing and serve. Best served chilled! Awesome!

 

Nutrition Information Per Serving (¼ of entire recipe): 232 calories, 47 g carbohydrate, 12 g protein, 2 grams fat, 11 g fiber, 393 mg sodium

Zucchini Boats:
Take it a step further and cut several zucchinis in half. Then using a knife, scoop out the inside of the zucchini, leaving just about ¼ inch around the outer shell. Serve the corn/yogurt mixture in zucchini boats by scooping ¼ salad into each zucchini.

Nutrition Facts per serving (1 serving is 1 zucchini boat with ¼ cup filling: 39 Calories, 8 g Carbohydrate, 2 g protein, 0 g Fat, 2 g fiber, Sodium 66 mg,  See full directions and link below.

 

Black_bean_Kiwi_zucchini_nodressing

 

Wanna turn this awesome salad into Black Bean & Corn Salad Zucchini Boats?  Simply click that title to get the recipe!

 

 

Black_bean_Kiwi_zucchini_holding2 Black_bean_Kiwi_zucchini_holding1
Black_bean_Kiwi_zucchini_dres_quarters
For a 10-day Weight Loss Jumpstart and Detox Plan, please check out The Nutrition Twins’ Veggie Cure!

 

Black Bean, Kiwi & Corn Salad with Wine Vinaigrette
 
Nutrition Facts per serving (1 serving is 1 zucchini boat with ¼ cup filling: 39 Calories, 8 g Carbohydrate, 2 g protein, 0 g Fat, 2 g fiber, Sodium 66 mg, See full directions and link below. Nutrition Information Per Serving (¼ of entire recipe): 232 calories, 47 g carbohydrate, 12 g protein, 2 grams fat, 11 g fiber, 393 mg sodium
Author:
Ingredients
  • Dressing
  • • 4 Tbsp plain nonfat yogurt
  • • 10 finely chopped, shelled, raw pistachios
  • • ½ tsp olive oil
  • • 3 Tsp red wine vinegar
  • • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • Salad
  • • 1, 16 ounce bag of organic frozen corn, mostly defrosted
  • • 1, 15.5 ounce can black beans, refrigerated
  • • 1 kiwi
  • • 2-3 Roma Tomatoes
  • 3 zucchini (for the boats)
Instructions
  1. Directions:
  2. Dressing:
  3. Place the yogurt, pistachios, oil and vinegar in a small bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside.
  4. Salad:
  5. If you didn’t allow the corn to defrost the corn in the fridge, place it in the microwave and defrost according to the package directions. We recommend just making sure it’s not frozen, but leaving it very chilled.
  6. Toss the corn, beans, kiwi and tomatoes with the dressing and serve. Best served chilled! Awesome!
  7. Zucchini Boats:
  8. Take it a step further and cut several zucchinis in half. Then using a knife, scoop out the inside of the zucchini, leaving just about ¼ inch around the outer shell. Serve the corn/yogurt mixture in zucchini boats by scooping ¼ salad into each zucchini.