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Avocado & Lentil Vegan Tacos

As registered dietitians and personal trainers if there’s one thing that we’ve learned from our clients, it’s the same thing that life’s taught us, too –there’s nothing more valuable than having a few healthy, satisfying, weeknight meals that you can turn to that can be tossed together in less than 30 minutes.  Who’s got time to slave over the stove after a long day?  Not us–and not you! So we’ve got your watch, your healthy heart and little waist-line with this meal! 😉 We’ve been loving the satisfying combo of fiber and protein from lentils and we knew we had to test out this meal.  We weren’t disappointed–in fact, we fell tongue over lentil for it! 🙂  Give these tacos a whirl, you may just call these dinner –a few nights a week!

 

Avo_Lentil_Vegan_Taco_smcropLOG 

Easy—ready to eat in less than 30 minutes!

Hello Meatless Monday that’s so delish even meat lovers won’t miss the beef!

Pssst… if you’re serving these and looking for some sides or other dishes, you may enjoy these:

Skinny Avocado “Fries”

Egg & Veggie Stuffed Bread

Skinny Potato Skins

Sweet Potato Chips with Sea Salt & Dark Chocolate Drizzle

Skinny Guacamole

Skinny Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Chocolate Drizzled Granola Balls

Creamy Vanilla Coconut Coffee

Avo_Lentil_Vegan_Taco2_logoAvocado & Lentil Vegan Tacos

Get ready to dive into these yumsters–you’ll never look back–and you’ll never feel better! 😉

Make 4 servings
Ingredients:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
¼ teaspoon cayenne powder
Fresh ground black pepper to taste
2½ cups pre-cooked lentils (we used Trader Joe’s Ready-to-Eat Steamed Lentils}
¼ cup water
8 whole grain corn tortillas, ideally organic or Non-GMO
1 avocado
1 large tomato

Directions:
1. Heat oil a large pan over medium-low heat. Once oil is warm, add cumin, chili powder and cayenne and stir until fragrant.
2. Add lentils and water and stir. Season with cracked pepper. Allow mixture to heat over low heat to simmer for several minutes until heated through.
3. Meanwhile slice avocado and tomato and place 2 tortillas on 4 plates.
4. Add salt to the lentil mixture if using, and stir in. Adding it last will help you to need less salt.
5. Add about ¼ cup of lentils in a row down the middle of each tortilla. Top with tomato and avocado. Flip the tortalla in half and serve, enjoy!

Nutrition Facts Per 2 Tacos: 405 Calories,  9 g fat, 61 g carbohydrate, 20 g protein, 500 mg sodium, 14 g fiber

Avocado & Lentil Vegan Tacos
 
Author:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne powder
  • Fresh ground black pepper to taste
  • 2½ cups pre-cooked lentils (we used Trader Joe's Ready-to-Eat Steamed Lentils}
  • ¼ cup water
  • 8 whole grain corn tortillas, ideally organic or Non-GMO
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 large tomato
Instructions
  1. Directions:
  2. Heat oil a large pan over medium-low heat. Once oil is warm, add cumin, chili powder and cayenne and stir until fragrant.
  3. Add lentils and water and stir. Season with cracked pepper. Allow mixture to heat over low heat to simmer for several minutes until heated through.
  4. Meanwhile slice avocado and tomato and place 2 tortillas on 4 plates.
  5. Add salt to the lentil mixture if using, and stir in. Adding it last will help you to need less salt.
  6. Add about ¼ cup of lentils in a row down the middle of each tortilla. Top with tomato and avocado. Flip the tortalla in half and serve, enjoy!
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 2 tacos Calories: 405 Fat: 9 g Carbohydrates: 61 g Sodium: 500 mg Fiber: 14 g Protein: 20 g

Avocado Lentil Tacos_collage

5 Steps to A Bulletproof Immune System

A cold?  The flu?!  No way–not us– and not you! 🙂

As registered dietitians and certified personal trainers, we’re fortunate in that we know what it takes to bolster our immune systems– and those things are part of our daily routines.  However, we’ll admit, we struggle with number 5 as getting our zzz’s is the toughest for us. And if we ever start to feel a bit run down, the first thing we say to one another is, “Ah! I just need a good night’s sleep and I’ll be back to normal!”  😉

Here are our top five steps for a Bulletproof Immune System:

Do these to prevent that achoooo! from coming from you! 😉

1. Follow our Red, Orange & Green Rule include one red, green or orange vegetable or fruit in every meal. If you’ve read our articles or our book The Veggie Cure, you know how we feel about veggies–eating more of them is single-handedly the best thing you can do for your health.  When you concentrate on getting one of these colors at each meal, you won’t forget them. Vegetables and fruits are packed with disease-fighting nutrients (antioxidants, phytonutrients and anti-inflammatories) that bolster your body’s immunity, fend off inflammation and protect the body against disease.   Getting them regularly (at every  meal) means you’re constantly flooding your body with the protection it needs to fight illness and to stay strong.

  • And fruits and veggies keep the body healthy, are helpful in achieving a healthy weight, fend off damage from toxins and help to prevent premature aging— so it’s no wonder why we’re constantly getting requests for delicious veggie recipes without high-calorie dressings (that’s why we created our Colorful Detox Salad, our Roasted Detoxifying Veggies, and our Kale Recharge Smoothie)!

Colorful_detox_salad

Try these easy ways to get more veggies at your meals:

    • use nori, collards or lettuce for traditional sandwiches or wraps rather than carb-rich bread
    • top baked potatoes with steamed vegetables
    • mix pureed canned pumpkin into oatmeal and add cinnamon
    • make/ order omelets, sandwiches, pizzas, wraps and burritos with veggies added

Make this immune-boosting lunch to take to work

2. Get Probiotics–these are the friendly bacteria that your body needs in order to crowd out the harmful bacteria that naturally exist in your digestive tract.  Our health begins in our gut so whether you take a probiotic supplement, drink kefir or kombucha, eat yogurt, sauerkraut or kimchi, these food are a great way to add to the good bacteria in your gut. (Seventy to eighty- percent of the cells that make up the immune system are located in your gut, which contains both helpful and harmful microorganisms.)

  • When the harmful bacteria outweigh the beneficial ones, your body suffers, causing systemic inflammation, disease, and making you sick (colds, flu, etc.).
  • Bolstering your gut with beneficial microorganisms is key to maintaining gut health, stabilizing immune function, and reducing inflammation.
  • As you likely know if you’ve read our other posts, we’re big yogurt fans.  If you don’t like it straight up…
  • You can get more yogurt in our recipes like our:

nutty_banana_chia_yogurt

3. Hydrate!  Your body needs water to function at it’s best, and your immune system is no exception. Staying adequately hydrated can help your body flush out toxins and wastes, helping your immune system to better fight infection. Dehydration can also affect your energy levels, as well as your ability to sleep, which can make you less likely to exercise, which is another trigger for a weakened immune system.  If you have trouble hydrating, try these easy water infusions that taste great to encourage drinking and that have restorative nutrients:

  • Apple Cider Vinegar Mint “Detox” Drink: Among many great ingredients that help to flush bloat, it’s got mint–we like to think of it as a peace maker in the body 😉 It eases indigestion and calms the stomach, likely by improving the flow of bile through the stomach, which helps to speed and ease digestion. Thanks in part to it’s anti-inflammatory antioxidant rosmarinic acid, it “calms your insides” to ease the havoc inside your body!
  • Lemon Mint “Detox” Drink: Lemon, mint and ginger flood your body with nutrients that help your body to fight of damage from foreign invaders and free radicals.
  • Mixed Citrus Ginger Flush: Packed with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory components to neutralize free radicals including chemicals that can travel through the body and cause damage to healthy cells.

Ginger Lemon Detox Water2

4. Don’t skip mealsForcing your body to run on empty will ultimately leave you run down and lower your immunity, leaving you susceptible to illnesses.

  • If you can’t have an actual meal and it’s been hours since you’ve last eaten, simply provide your body with a healthy snack to keep it fueled and not tax your system when it’s already dealing with stress.
    • Try a Greek Yogurt (probiotics–double your immunity boost here–woohoo!) and some berries (our Red, Orange, Green Rule, oh yeah!)
    • On-the-go? A handful of nuts or an apple with a tablespoon of nut butter.

5. Get a good night’s rest.  The body repairs itself when you sleep.  When your body is building its’ strength, it’s bolstering your immune system–you’re ready to fight off colds and flus! Aim for 7-8 hours a night.   Pssst…if you know us, call us in the late evening and make sure we’re getting ready to hit the sack, we need a little help with this one! Thanks! 🙂

5_Steps_Bulletproof_Immune_collage_writing

5 Steps To Cleanse Your Body, “Detox” and Recharge

Even as registered dietitians and certified personal trainers, we love a good celebration and having fun as much as anyone, but we’re not gonna lie, we’re a bit relieved that some of the holidays and many of the social gatherings are slowing down a bit so we can all (us included!) get back on track. After all, everyone feels better after losing the extra party LBs, bloat and heaviness that most feel after too much indulgence.

 

And we’ve got just the tips to get your mind and your body immediately on the healthy train! Remember, during this time, the last thing that you want is something high in calories and heavy; it will only dig you further into a hole. Instead bring an abrupt end to the discomfort from overindulging that you’re feeling (feeling bloating and heaviness anyone?) with wholesome, nutrient-packed foods, i.e., your new besties.

 

What you really need are foods that are packed with anti-inflammatory compounds and antioxidants, potassium, water and fiber, but low in calories and sodium. They’ll immediately get your mind and body back on the healthy track as they hydrate you and flood your body with nutrients to help to neutralize damaging particles while flushing out bloating culprits, like salt.

 

Before we help you to choose those amazing foods, if you really want to kick start your health, we highly recommend also doing these three things:

 

1. Cut out sugar and artificial sweeteners for a week. The goal is to reset your “sweet” taste buds. By limiting very sweet flavors your taste buds will “reset” themselves as they lower their perception of sweetness. Steer away from sugary drinks, snacks, and treats. Allow fruit to satisfy your sweet tooth—and you’ll be amazed by how well it works! When you go back to sugary foods, you’ll need less sweet flavor to satisfy you. Plus, if you saw our New Year’s Resolution article you know that refined sugars typically add a lot of calories without nutrients, contributing to weight gain—and they also often increase cravings. They seem to weaken the immune system too by reducing your white blood cells’ ability to destroy bacteria.

 

If you really need something sweet, try foods like these that are naturally sweet (no sugar added!):

 

o Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Ice Cream  (140 Calories)

Chocolate_banana_ice-cream_yum_Logo

 

o Comfort Food Reinvented Inside Apple Pie (80 Calories)

o Skinny Homemade Strawberry Mint Ice Cream   (40 Calories)

 

2. Cut out alcohol. Although generally, a glass of wine can be healthy, while you are cleansing your body, we suggest avoiding it. Not only does it provide calories without nutrients but during the cleanse you’ll be restoring your liver and asking it to detoxify alcohol gives it an extra burden.
3. And for the love of veggies, don’t go on a starvation diet! Diets that are 1,000 calories (and less) simply backfire. They are not sustainable, don’t provide enough nutrients or protein to keep your lean muscle tissue and they are so restrictive that it’s impossible to keep them up for long. When you return to normal eating, you’ve lost muscle—and lowered your metabolism—and weight gain is inevitable! Ahh!

 

Follow these 5 Steps to Cleanse Your Body:
1. Go for foods that are loaded with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds. They help to neutralize toxins and prevent inflammation and damage caused by overdoing it on less-than-healthy toxin-creating foods and drinks. Antioxidant and anti-inflammatory foods actually help to revitalize cells (think vegetables, [especially brightly colored, but all work—and the more the better! After all they are 80-90% water and provide potassium and fiber], fruits, beans, fish).
Anti-inflammatory/ Phytonutrient-Packed Recipes:

Colorful Detox Salad: Chockfull of vegetables that mop up free radical damage, this low-calorie salad is great for detoxifying and fighting inflammation

Colorful_detox_salad

Crispy Cran-Mango Brussels Sprouts: Brussels sprouts are superstars when it comes to fighting damage and inflammation. Cranberries and mangos are phytonutrient powerhouses too.

Veggie Flush Salad: Light and refreshing, beets have nutrients which help detoxify the body by purifying the liver and blood. A powerhouse trio of asparagus, a natural diuretic; fennel, which relieves gastrointestinal ailments to get your tummy feeling flat; and kale, which plays a role in both phases of the liver’s detoxification process, will have you feeling rejuvenated in no time.
• Check out our book The Nutrition Twins’ Veggie Cure for a 10-day Weight Loss Jumpstart and Detox Plan and more than 100 delicious healthy recipes like thisNutrition Twins Veggie Cure

 

2. Include water and potassium-rich foods (and drinks) that are low in sodium. This is a potent combo that restores normal fluid balance and flushes out bloat and puffiness. Why is this combo so magical? Fluids help to flush out your system while potassium helps to counterbalance sodium. (Go for vegetables [all of them, especially green leafy veggies] and fruits).

 

Orange-Lime Sparkling Refresher 5 calorie citrus refresher helps to banish bloat and get you feeling light after indulging in heavy holiday foods.

orangelimewaterwithlogo

Ginger and Carrot Slim-down Smoothie: Potassium rich cantaloupe and apples round out the phytonutrient-rich ginger and carrots to make this an ideal beverage to restore normal fluid balance

Detoxifying Green Tea Smoothie:  Packed with potassium and water plus phytonutrients to neutralize toxins, this refreshing smoothie is delish.

 

Apple Cider Vinegar Mint “Detox” Drink: Among many great ingredients that help to flush bloat, it’s got mint–we like to think of it as a peace maker in the body 😉 It eases indigestion and calms the stomach, likely by improving the flow of bile through the stomach, which helps to speed and ease digestion. Thanks in part to it’s anti-inflammatory antioxidant rosmarinic acid, it “calms your insides” to ease the havoc inside your body!

Slimming Raspberry-mint “Detox” Spritzer: Raspberries and lime make this a drink a potassium winner, and at only 8 calories, you can drink it all day long and flush away bloat without the calories adding up!

Lemon Mint “Detox” Drink: Lemon, mint and ginger flood the body with potassium to flush bloat and restore normal hydration status

Lemon_Detox_Drink

Skinny Green Smoothie:  Only 61 Calories, add this to your list

Rise & Shine Weight Loss Smoothie:    Only 156 Calories, kick start your day with this

Rise_&Shine_Nutritious_smoothie_purchased_after
3. Focus on foods packed with fiber; they’re naturally low in calories. Fiber prevents constipation, keeping your regular. After your body extracts nutrients from food, fiber (think all vegetables, fruits, and high-quality carbohydrates like oatmeal, quinoa and beans) helps to rinse out the remains– waste and toxins from your colon to give you a flat stomach.

 

Chickpea Burgers: Beans are ideal when it comes to boosting fiber; this flavorful burger makes a great fiber rich lunch or dinner.

Chickpea Burger

Slow Cooker Quinoa Chicken Chili: With quinoa, black beans, kidney beans, peppers, and tomatoes, this meal makes a great fiber-rich lunch or dinner to flush wastes out of the body.

 

Pumpkin Chia Seed Pudding: With fiber powerhouses pumpkin puree and chia seeds, this treat packs in a whopping 17 grams of fiber! Plus, the pumpkin and chia are both great for fighting inflammation with their potent phytonutrients
4. Go for the veggies with especially powerful detox capabilities. Fennel, bok choy, beets and kale are rock stars when it comes to detoxification. They are some of the few foods that play a role in both phases of liver detoxification.

 

Here are a few recipes to help you get your fill:
Kale, Quinoa and Edamame Superfood Bowl (featuring kale)

quinoa_kale_salad

Chunky Sweet Potato Kale Chili (super easy, featuring kale)
Spiced Ginger Citrus Quinoa: (featuring fennel):

Beets with Feta and Walnuts: (featuring beets)
5. Sweat yourself clean! Skin is the body’s largest organ, and sweating is a great way to help the body with its’ healthy, natural elimination process. Make a goal to sweat daily since this is one way your body eliminates metabolic breakdown products and excess salt.
Hello Slim & Rejuvenated! 😉

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Lentil and Chickpea Stew

We just returned from our annual Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo with Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics in Nashville where we learned that the United Nations has proclaimed 2016 as “International Year of Pulses”.  Dry beans, peas, lentils and chickpeas, also known as pulse crops, and are the edible seeds of plants in the legume family — and if they’re new to your plate, you may not realize that they really they are the little beans we have been cultivating from the soil for over than 10,000 years! And now, 2016 is dedicated to pulses is because of the vital role they play in our diets and in sustainable farming.  Yup, dried beans, peas, chickpeas and lentils are the new “it”- who knew?! 🙂  If you ask us it’s always been the year of the pulses. After all, our mom created most of our meals from plants so proteins came from the pulses–we had lentil burgers, pea soup, black bean stuffed tortillas, you name it, it inspired these of our own.  Tomato, Avocado & Chickpea Salad, our Quick & Creamy Quinoa with Beans & Spinach, our Quick White Bean Stew with Kale and Tomatoes,  our Tex-Mex Bean Salsa and these two favesLentil Vegetable Soup, Black Bean Quinoa Chili with Avocado

 Lentil_Chickpea_Stew9_crop_LOGO

So why are we so excited to share this recipe with you and help you to get more pulses? 

Well, they fill you up with protein and fiber–their rich in this magical combination for weight loss–and they are low in fat and contain many vitamins and minerals.

They also are great for the environment–they are considered very sustainable because they are nitrogen-fixing (they use nitrogen from the atmosphere to make protein) and water-efficient crops; they use 10-50 percent less water compared to other sources of proteins–and they are an important protein source worldwide.)

So whatcha waiting for, grab your spoon and dig in–or grab your pot and toss in this easy stew! We can’t wait to hear what ya think! 🙂

Lentil_Chickpea_Stew1_crop_LOGO

Lentil and Chickpea Stew

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 so much we often have a serving and half, which is just 300 calories and bumps up the protein nicely!  We love having this with our Caramelized Cauliflower or with our Roasted detoxifying Veggies.

Serves 4

Ingredients:
½ tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
¾ cup lentils
1, 14 ounce can chickpeas
14 ounce can diced fire roasted tomatoes
1 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 lentils, tomatoes, chickpeas (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: 200 calories, 3 g fat, 35 g carbohydrate, 12 g protein, 13 g fiber, 289 mg sodium, 0 g saturated fat

 

Lentil and Chickpea Stew
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • ½ tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • ¾ cup lentils
  • 1, 14 ounce can chickpeas
  • 14 ounce can diced fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1 avocado, garnish
Instructions
  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 lentils, tomatoes, chickpeas (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 Information
Serving size: 1 serving Calories: 200 calories Fat: 3 g Saturated fat: o g Carbohydrates: 35 g Sodium: 289 mg Fiber: 13 g Protein: 12 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

Skinny Spinach Artichoke Dip Bites

This is for all of you chip and dip lovers!

When we were in high school, we’d often go to Houston’s with our closest friends who were obsessed with the Spinach and Artichoke Dip.  They each would get a full order for themselves (oh those were the days…when calories didn’t catch up with you and your active lifestyle! 😉 ) and they’d devour it.  It’s not that we had so much discipline; we just were holding off for our fave—the next stop after Houston’s was frozen yogurt—that’s where we could do some real damage 😉

Despite our preference for sweets, we get it– one of the most addictive things can be a plateful of chips and dip, it’s so hard to stop eating!  That’s why we created this Skinny Tex-Mex Dip, Skinny White Bean Dip, Red Pepper Hummus and Feta Herb Yogurt DipAnd now this lil’ number!

spinach artichoke pic1

With this recipe, you can get the glory of chips and dip without regretting all the calories! Hellooo irresistibly scrumptious Skinny Spinach Artichoke Dip!

And that’s not all!  Since chips are fat and sodium doozys, we came up with something just as tasty. The eggplant in this recipe replaces the chips—and don’t worry, you won’t miss those little bloating buggers!  Plus this recipe still uses cheese to make the dip gooey and delicious, but the cheese is lower in fat and still high in protein!

spinach artichoke pic4

Next time you have a craving, choose our Skinny Spinach Artichoke Dip on Eggplant Bites!

spinach artichoke pic3

sKinny_spinach_articho_LOTS_LOGO

Skinny Spinach Artichoke Dip on Eggplant Bites

Ingredients

Dip

1 package (10 oz.) frozen chopped spinach

1 can (14 oz.) artichoke hearts

½ cup grated low-fat Parmesan cheese

½ cup 2% Greek yogurt

½ cup non-fat shredded mozzarella cheese

¼ cup green onions

½ tsp. basil leaves

½ tsp. garlic powder

Eggplant

1 eggplant (medium size)

2 tbsp. olive oil

1 cup low-sodium bread crumbs

2 tbsp. pepper

1 cup diced tomatoes

Makes about 8 servings

Serving size: two eggplant and dip bites

Directions:

Dip

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

2. Thaw and drain the packaged spinach.

3. Drain and finely chop the artichoke hearts.

4. Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and thoroughly mix together with a large spoon.

5. Spoon the combination into a round dish (we used a 9-inch pie plate).

6. Bake for 25 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes before placing onto the eggplant.

Eggplant

1. Cut the eggplant into quarter-inch slices.

2. Place oil into a small bowl. Very lightly brush oil (if you don’t have a brush, use a knife to spread) onto each eggplant slice.  (If you have a spray bottle with oil this is ideal for saving calories; simply spritz bread with oil.)

3. Mix bread crumbs and pepper and spread out on a plate. Dip each eggplant into the breadcrumbs to lightly coat.

4. Put  eggplant bites into the oven and bake for about 20 minutes or until tender.

5. Remove eggplant when tender, top with dip and spoon tomatoes on top. Enjoy!

Nutrition Information:

Calories: 139

Carbs: 16 g

Fat: 3 g

Protein: 14 g

Cholesterol: 5 mg

Sodium: 374 mg

Sugars 4 g

Fiber: 6 g

Skinny Artichoke Dip Bites Collage

Skinny Spinach Artichoke Dip Bites
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 16
Ingredients
  • 1 package (10 oz.) frozen chopped spinach
  • 1 can (14 oz.) artichoke hearts
  • ½ cup grated low-fat Parmesan cheese
  • ½ cup 2% Greek yogurt
  • ½ cup non-fat shredded mozzarella cheese
  • ¼ cup green onions
  • ½ tsp. basil leaves
  • ½ tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 eggplant (medium size)
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 cup low-sodium bread crumbs
  • 2 tbsp. pepper
  • 1 cup diced tomatoes
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Thaw and drain the packaged spinach.
  3. Drain and finely chop the artichoke hearts.
  4. Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and thoroughly mix together with a large spoon.
  5. Spoon the combination into a round dish (we used a 9-inch pie plate).
  6. Bake for 25 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes before placing onto the eggplant.
  7. Cut the eggplant into quarter-inch slices.
  8. Place oil into a small bowl. Very lightly brush oil (if you don’t have a brush, use a knife to spread) onto each eggplant slice. (If you have a spray bottle with oil this is ideal for saving calories; simply spritz bread with oil.)
  9. Mix bread crumbs and pepper and spread out on a plate. Dip each eggplant into the breadcrumbs to lightly coat.
  10. Put eggplant bites into the oven and bake for about 20 minutes or until tender.
  11. Remove eggplant when tender, top with dip and spoon tomatoes on top. Enjoy!
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 2 eggplant bites Calories: 139 Fat: 3 g Carbohydrates: 16 g Sugar: 4 g Sodium: 374 mg Fiber: 6 g Protein: 14 g Cholesterol: 5 mg