New from Chef Meg in June

By , SparkPeople Blogger
Wonder what Chef Meg's been cooking this month?

Our healthy cooking expert started by giving fajitas a makeover. She ditched the tortilla and served them inside a pepper! (And she created a salt-free rub that's great on any grilled meat.)

With all the time spent outside in the almost-summer sun, she's been sipping on flavored, low-calorie teas and lemonade. She has a few secret ingredients from the garden.

And when she wasn't weeding the garden or cheering on her boys at baseball games, Chef Meg was grilling up a (healthy feast). Shrimp with a tropical fruity sauce was on the menu.

She also took on a challenge: How can you make over Alfredo sauce and keep it light enough for the warmer months? Her take on the Italian classic is packed full of veggies, with half the calories and fat as the original. (Her secret ingredients: goat cheese and evaporated milk!)

Finally, Chef Meg set out to re-create a Spanish favorite--paella. She simplified the recipe, omitted a couple of pricey spices, and focused on layering in flavor without fatty cuts of meat.

Keep reading to see photos of her creations--and get the recipes!
No Salt Fajita Rub: Use this spice blend on any grilled meat or fish: try pork, steak, shrimp, or even salmon! You will want to make a big batch of the spice rub to always have some on hand.
CALORIES: 19.8  |  FAT: 1.1g  |  PROTEIN: 0.8g  |  CARBS: 3.1g  |  FIBER: 1.6g  
Deconstructed Chicken Fajitas: Who says you have to serve fajitas in a flour tortilla? Instead of serving peppers in the fajitas, I serve fajitas in a roasted pepper!
CALORIES: 326.5  |  FAT: 8.2g  |  PROTEIN: 32.3g  |  CARBS: 30.5g  |  FIBER: 7.4g
Creamy Watermelon Salad: Watermelon is a favorite summer dessert, but it makes a lovely salad, too. Here, creamy citrus dressing pairs with the sweet melon and crunchy celery.
CALORIES: 51.8  |  FAT: 1g  |  PROTEIN: 2.5g  |  CARBS: 9.3g  |  FIBER: 1g
Grilled Shrimp with Mango-Chili Sauce: This sauce does double-duty: grilling glaze and dip. Keeping the shell on the shrimp locks in moisture while you grill them, and it keeps them from sticking. You can use this technique with the sauce of your choice.
CALORIES: 196.7  |  FAT: 2.3g  |  PROTEIN: 24g  |  CARBS: 21.2g  |  FIBER: 2.4g
Berry Good Limeade: This refreshing and not-too-sweet beverage is almost too pretty to drink. Almost!
CALORIES: 33.7  |  FAT: 0.2g  |  PROTEIN: 0.3g  |  CARBS: 6.8g  |  FIBER: 1.7g
Orange Lavender Tea: This tea is ready in no time, and it turns any afternoon into a special occasion. Lavender adds an herbal aroma and taste.
CALORIES: 2.4  |  FAT: 0g  |  PROTEIN: 0g  |  CARBS: 0.7g  |  FIBER: 0g
Peachy Thyme Lemonade: Choose summer's ripest peaches for this refreshing lemonade. It's ready in no time--you can keep the skins on the peaches, which speeds up prep work.
CALORIES: 43.8  |  FAT: 0g  |  PROTEIN: 0.4g  |  CARBS: 10g  |  FIBER: 1.1g
Slow Cooker Strawberry-Rhubarb Conserve: It looks like jam, but it's bursting with whole fruit and thick enough to eat with a fork. Serve over pork roast, on top of yogurt or cottage cheese, or on your morning toast.
CALORIES: 52.8  |  FAT: 0.5g  |  PROTEIN: 0.7g  |  CARBS: 13.9g  |  FIBER: 3.2g
Chef Meg's Light Alfredo Pasta with Veggies: Even a lunch portion of fettuccine Alfredo has 800 calories and 48 grams of fat. Mine has less than 1/2 the calories, 1/5 the fat, and plenty of veggies, too. (We did a gluten-free version, too.)
CALORIES: 343.6  |  FAT: 9.8g  |  PROTEIN: 16.9g  |  CARBS: 53g  |  FIBER: 8.9g
Vegetable Paella: I created a budget version of this rustic Spanish dish. My version skips the seafood and the saffron, and I finish the dish with an herbed-citrus olive pesto to add color and intensify the flavor.
CALORIES: 219.4  |  FAT: 5g  |  PROTEIN: 7.2g  |  CARBS: 38g  |  FIBER: 7.4g
Coming in July: Slow Cooker Buffalo Chicken Soup, Shrimp and Avocado Salad, Zucchini Cakes, and Healthy Popsicles!

What's cooking in your kitchen this month? Which recipe sounds good to you?

Want to know more about these recipes and other healthy cooking topics? Chef Meg will share more in her weekly blogs, which run each Monday on the dailySpark.

Which recipe will be on your dinner table soon?
Want more healthy recipes from me and fellow SparkPeople members? Be sure to subscribe to SparkPeople's Recipe of the Day email. Click here to sign up!
Did you know SparkRecipes is now on Facebook? Click here to "Like" us!
Like this blog? Then you'll love "The SparkPeople Cookbook: Love Your Food, Lose the Weight."