All Entries For recipes
There's something so comforting about tomato soup, especially when paired with a grilled cheese sandwich. Today we're sharing with you a simple recipe for a homemade version of this comforting classic, plus ideas for how to top your soup--and easy ways to transform it into other meals.
Mmm, mmm, better! That's what you will be saying when you try my easy Creamy Tomato Soup. It tastes so much better than the stand-by canned variety, which rely on salt for most of their taste.
The condensed tomato soup we grew up eating has 480 mg sodium (about 20% of the max you should consume in a day). The homemade version has less than 100 mg per serving.
Tomato soup is delightful on its own, but it also pairs well with all sorts of toppings. Try one of these flavorful toppings: Read More ›
Finding time to make a healthy dinner is a challenge for many of us. One of the best tips you'll hear is to freeze meals for busy nights to avoid the greasy drive-thru or pricey takeout traps. But how do you know if a meal will freeze well? How much time will it take to create a few make-ahead meals? And how in the world do you reheat and serve those frozen meals?
We've got you covered.
Before You Begin:
- Pick a day to plan meals. Ask your kids, spouse, or friends for ideas. Better yet, log onto SparkRecipes.com for easy, quick recipes. Peruse grocery store ads, then make your final meal plan.
- Write your grocery list--and take it with you when you shop.
- Once home, store recipe ingredients together in your pantry and refrigerator.
- Set aside a couple of hours to cook your freeze-for-later meals. (Make sure you follow food safety guidelines for storage and reheating.)
Before you head to the store, let's talk about which foods freeze well, and which don't: Read More ›
Pork Chops are not just the "Other White Meat," but a surprisingly versatile, affordable, and healthy meal plan option. A few simple changes are all that's required to bring this slice of Americana--pun intended--into the health-conscious 21st century. Try baking, slow-cooking, or grilling them, and then add your favorite fresh herbs to boost the chop's natural flavor structure. Opt for a more nutritious sauce or topping, like all natural apple sauce, spiced yogurt-based sauce, or home made chutney. Another benefit is that it doesn't take long to cook, nor are the ingredients very costly. Feed your family a healthy meal with these pork chop recipes. Read More ›
Thanks for entering. This contest is now closed, and winners have been notified!
UPDATE: We're extending this contest through the end of January 2013 and giving away five more copies. (The first five winners will be notified this week via email.)
Did you commit to cooking more in 2013? Whether you've never been comfortable in the kitchen, you want to make over your existing family recipes, or you need some motivation to give up takeout and fast food, SparkPeople can help!
To kick-start your year of cooking more--and to celebrate the launch of "The SparkPeople Cookbook: Love Your Food, Lose the Weight" in paperback--we're giving you the chance to win one of five copies of our cookbook!
Whether you've been on this road to a healthier you for awhile or you're new to SparkPeople in 2013, you'll want to keep reading. This is a giveaway you won't want to miss!
Written with our healthy cooking expert, Meg Galvin, the book is chock-full of over 150 quick and delicious recipes like barbecue chicken pizza, coconut lime shrimp, and mini apple tarts. Since these dishes were created by SparkPeople, you know they’re good for you, too! The book also includes success stories from SparkPeople members, helpful tips on food preparation, pantry checklists, and much more. Think of it as a personal chef in book form, encouraging you to live your best life by making smart food choices, one page and one recipe at a time.
The book was published in paperback on January 2, and it's also available in a new enhanced e-book version, which contains how-to videos and additional content. No matter which version you get, we know you'll love it!
Read more about the book, enter to win a copy--and get sneak-peek recipes! Read More ›
Welcome in the new year with these winter slow cooker soup recipes. As a busy mother, wife and writer, I have to plan ahead if I’m going to achieve my health goals. When I utilize my slow cooker, I’m able to quickly and easily prepare family meals. These hearty soup recipes will warm you on a cold night and support you nutritionally too. Begin 2013 on a strong note with these soup recipes. Read More ›
Did you resolve to cook more in 2013? Want to branch out from your favorite healthy foods? Here are my top 13 healthy foods you have to try in 2013! Some of these foods will be completelyt new to you; others will simply be new uses for old favorites.
BisonTraditionally grazing animals on grass brings on the flavor but leaves the fat back on the farm. Swap out ground bison for any recipe calling for ground turkey or beef. According to the USDA, a comparison of bison to 90% lean ground beef awards the medal to bison. A 3.5 ounce serving of bison contains 146 calories and 7 grams of fat, while the beef arrives at the table with 176 calories and 10 grams of fat.
Greek Turkey Burger
Ground Beef-Potato Casserole
Keema (Ground Beef Casserole)
Salsa Turkey Burgers
Turkey Chili with Corn and Black Beans
Vegetable Beef Soup
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Ever wonder what other SparkPeople members are cooking? We sure do. That's why we rounded up the year's most-viewed recipes. Today we're sharing the top 25 recipes of 2012 from SparkRecipes.com, plus great tips and some of our favorite dishes you should commit to trying in 2013!
Most of these recipes were submitted by members like you!
1. Easy Zucchini Parmesan
To ensure perfectly crisp zucchini, bake on a metal rack to achieve even browning. Read my blog on faux frying for more details. In the mood for lemon? Try my Zucchini Ribbons with Lemony Bread Crumbs.
Read More ›
Editor's Note: This is a part of a series about how to re-create some of your favorite healthy foods at home.
A double-dose of blueberries (frozen and dried) gives these muffins extra flavor, and whole-wheat flour adds fiber. Although they’re not the oversized, mile-high sugar bombs you might find at a gourmet bakery, these double-blueberry muffins are pleasantly light-textured in spite of being made with nearly half white whole-wheat flour.
At just 125 calories each, these blueberry muffins make a not-too-guilty treat to start your day. Add a carton of low-fat yogurt, and you have a satisfying and delicious breakfast of under 300 calories. (Compare that to a "low-fat" blueberry muffin from your favorite coffeehouse, which has 430 calories!) Read More ›
At many dinner tables, the term "meatloaf" strikes fear in the hearts of even the most hardened palates. I have spent considerable time trying to bring peace among those who in my family who love and hate this classic American dish. Even for those who crave this American delicacy, there's the problem of how to prepare it without the fat and calories that wreek havoc on your health goals. Start by substituting lean meats, whole grains and vegetables. Use fresh spices and dried herbs to give it an international feel. Did you know meatloaf can even be made without meat? Have fun in your kitchen and enjoy these healthy meatloaf SparkRecipes. Read More ›
As a chef, I love to entertain in our home--especially around the holidays when the house is decorated and we want to spend time with our family and friends.
As part of my schooling, we were taught how to entertain as part of our hospitality training. We learned to plan and pull off magnificent events without a drop of sweat.
You don't need to go to culinary school to learn the same skills. Go ahead and set the date--you'll be prepared! Just follow my tips below for a well-planned event, and you'll still be smiling at the end of the night while saying (and believing), "Well, that was fun. Let's do it again next year."
Make a party plan!
Read More ›
It just wouldn't be the holidays without this warm and nutty spice. Impress friends and family at the dinner table with some trivia. Did you know nutmeg is actually the seed of a type of tree?
Cut open the fruit of a tropical variety of evergreen tree and you’ll find this inch-sized brown seed. It doesn’t look like much but this little baby packs in warm and earthy flavor when it’s freshly grated. Ground nutmeg is also widely available, but isn’t as potent.
Native to Indonesia, the Caribbean and part of India, the outer covering of nutmeg is cultivated as an entirely different spice known as mace.
One tablespoon of nutmeg has just shy of 40 calories, 1 gram of fiber and B-vitamins like thiamin, B6 and folate. You’ll also find minerals like copper, iron and potassium.
What to do with Nutmeg
Use nutmeg to add a spicy, sweet kick to baked goods. Banana, pumpkin, apple and carrot get along famously with this sassy spice. Sweet foods love nutmeg but so do creamy dishes like fettuccine Alfredo, mac and cheese and creamed spinach. You’ll find it in lots of holiday recipes; everything from pumpkin pie to green bean casserole.
Shopping and Storage Tips
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Pasta is a crowd pleaser and doesn’t have to be hard to cook or unhealthy. Baked pasta is my go to meal when I need to prepare something ahead of time for dinner. With these simple modifications I've been able to take high-fat, high-calorie dishes and replaced them with highly nutritious ingredients.
- Use only half the amount of cheese.
- Replace high-fat protein with lean protein.
- Replace half the pasta with vegetables.
- Try pasta made with rice, corn or quinoa flour for a gluten-free option.
- Use non-fat milk and Greek yogurt for a cream based sauce.
Squash is one of those vegetable categories that spans a whole range of colors, flavors, shapes, textures and growing seasons. From acorn squash to zucchini, this veggie family has it all, including nutrients, fiber and fewer than 75 calories per serving.
Summer varieties (like zucchini and yellow squash) are nutritious, with antioxidants and carotenoids; they’re ideal for sautéing. (Try: 10 New Uses for Zucchini)
Hard-skinned winter squashes (acorn, butternut, pumpkin) are packed with antioxidants and vitamin A and roast beautifully. And spaghetti squash makes a delightfully different (and super low-cal) substitute for pasta.
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The modern coffee house has become the de facto office space for thousands of work-from-home Americans, including yours truly. When I need to change of scenery or to interact in-person with other human beings, my local java joint is my go-to option. The people-watching is decent and I will often bump into a friend, which approximates the traditional water-cooler conversation. It’s also a place for nutritional choices and I often find myself struggling to stick to the program. Whether it’s the sweet aromas or the attractive displays, many of the items in the forefront are loaded with calories and easily put me over the top on my daily sugar intake. not to mention how terrible I feel later. Even worse are the hidden calories in my original favorite drink, the latte. I thought I was being so healthy, because there was no minimal sugar, only to find out how many calories are in the deceptively large servings. I am happy to share, however, that I have learned a lot over the last year to take control of the coffee house menu to make it work for me and my health needs. Read More ›