Sunday, July 1, 2012

Healthy recipes

Due to a recent illness, my husband has gone on a mission to lose weight and just eat healthier in general. As a good wife, I totally support him on this mission.

So far, he's cut back on soft drinks, which is really good. He has another plan which involved buying a combination toaster/egg poacher to make himself an egg muffin. I don't quite understand this plan, but it has to do with eating more protein and also his LDL is 20 for some reason. It has a cute little tiny egg frying pan.

In any case, I am trying to find easy recipes to make for him that are also healthy. Two constraints:

1) The recipes must be really easy, since I'll be watching two children as I'm cooking.

2) No seafood

Any good healthy easy recipes you'd like to share would be greatly appreciated.


  1. Cooking Light has several cookbooks that feature recipes that can be made in less than 15 minutes. They are generally healthy and quite tasty.

  2. Is cheese acceptable? Goat cheese bruschetta is amazing, particularly if served on flatbread. I get these flatbreads that have 2.5g of fat each, they are 8"x8". Spread with a thin layer of goat cheese, top with bruschetta (diced Roma tomatoes, thin sliced green onion, a bit of EVOO, basil, and chive) then bake for a couple of minutes just to crisp the flatbread. Drizzle with reduced balsamic vinegar. Really, really super tasty and surprisingly filling. Two flatbreads done this way makes enough for my husband, myself, and both kids, and I use less than 50g of goat cheese to make that much.

    Best salad ever: steamed sliced chiaggia beets, gooseberries, julienne carrots, pine nuts, and a drizzle of raspberry vinaigrette on mixed spring greens. Cubed apples in place of gooseberries is doable, too.

    Pepper chicken: thaw chicken breasts almost all the way, just a bit frozen in the middle. Sprinkle generously with fresh cracked black pepper, bake until done in a covered pan. Leaving it a bit frozen keeps it from drying out, I find. I usually serve this with steamed green beans sprinkled with a bit of garlic powder.

    We eat a lot of oatmeal for breakfast. I add cubed apples, cinnamon, a little bit of brown sugar, and milk. Super yummy.

    Montreal steak sandwiches. Take a marinating steak (I use about 1/2lb for four people), slice very thin, dash with Worcestershire sauce. Cook some onion to translucent, add the steak and cook. Add lots of thin sliced green pepper (I do about 2x as much green pepper as steak.) Cook to soften pepper. Add Montreal steak spice. Put in whole wheat rolls, sprinkle with just a little bit of cheese, broil to melt cheese and toast the buns. It's more veggies than meat, and I usually serve them with another veggie. My kids love these.

    We eat a lot of seafood, so most of my healthiest recipes are fish, hah, but those are a few family favourites.

  3. If he likes steel-cut oatmeal, I've had good luck with making it in a slow cooker/crockpot and freezing individual portions to microwave on demand. (I'm a big fan of cooking in bulk and freezing in general. I grew up in a big family and that worked better for us than making lots of casseroles.)

  4. I'm not asking you to make any life style changes!! these recipies are just healthy and wonderful!! do not be scared by the website name!!

  5. my favorite healthy eating website is
    Also, the recipe I made for dinner tonight was super easy and healthy:

  6. A quick and easy Djion Chicken Parmesan recipe that I like (it calls for garlic salt, but you can just mince garlic if you're worried about salt)

  7. Ooh, also, Turkey Bacon for breakfast. Delicious, usually about 0.5g of fat per strip and there are a few brands that come in low-salt varieties.

  8. I am a huge fan of tacos (hazards of growing up in Texas) so Old El Paso taco mix is a favorite of mine. I can't speak for salt content, but I do know you can substitute ground beef for ground turkey and it comes out just as good. Throw whatever cheese and veggies you like on top (mine usually consist if lettuce, cheese (preshredded!), tomatoes, salsa, avocado, black olives, and sour cream, though I have recently discovered napa cabbage goes really well on top) to make it as healthy or not healthy as you like. You don't have to buy the spice packets in a kit so you can grab tacos or tortillas from whoever (ie healthier versions like wheat). For reference, one packet = 1 pound of meat. Also, if you can find chipotle flavored mixes (I think ortega) I can tell you that blends really well with sweet potatoes and chicken (yes, that was a throw left overs in with seasoning night).

  9. I also recommend
    I've made quite a few things off that blog, and they always turn out pretty good.
    These are two of my favorites:

    The recipes aren't hard, the second one is probably the simpler one. I mix up the marinade for the beef before bed, stick it in the fridge, and then cook it the next night. It's really just a salad with pickled onions and beef on it (when you cook the beef, shake off as much marinade as you can before it goes into the pan, you'll get a nicer finish on the outside of the beef that way. I put lots of stuff in the salad, I don't limit it to just the stuff listed. Oh, and I will often whisk in some olive oil into the dipping sauce and use that as my dressing for the salad.

    The first one involves some chopping.

  10. We students teach a nutrition class and get many of our recipes from here.

    Also, I found this site called yummly on reddit-u put whatever ingredients you have, it comes up with different recipes in the archives that you can make (for those quick fixes)

  11. I became "vegan" after a health scare that forced me into medical leave from med school this past year. (Vegan is in parentheses because I'm super relaxed about it.) The only reason is stuck was because of Quick-Fix Vegan by Robin Robertson. All recipes are thirty minutes or less and they're all amazing. Seriously. I've only found one that I haven't liked and it involved quinoa, which seems to be a polarizing grain in and of itself. I'll send you some of my favorite recipes that I keep in my iPhone. Hope you enjoy them!

    Also, if you have a food processor, you can cut down the recipes to just 15 minutes.

  12. Favourite easy recipe:

    1. Cook a bunch of quinoa
    2. Mix in sauteed onions and celery
    3. Mix in chopped up parsley, some dried cranberries and some quarterly sliced cucumbers
    4. Squeeze lemon or lime juice (or both!)
    5. Serve hot... or stick in the fridge and serve cold (my fave)

    Good protein, very easy and best of all.... very yummy!

  13. From a company's coming cookbook: Chicken in Wine Sauce

    - 2lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts
    - 1 can Campbell's reduced-fat cream of mushroom soup (10oz)
    - 1 can sliced mushrooms, drained
    - 1/2 cup Sauterne Cooking Wine
    - 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
    - 1/4 teaspoon paprika

    1) Mix all but the chicken in a 3 quart casserole dish.
    2) Now add in the chicken, making sure chicken is coated in the sauce.
    3) Put the lid on, bake at 350°F for about an hour.

    Serves 8.


    We cut the chicken quantity in half so that we have additional sauce, add an extra can of mushrooms, and serve it with rice and whole green beans. For easier bites, we also cut the chicken into strips instead of whole parts.

    Also, check out the Hungry Girl website and books. There's buttloads of healthy-alternative/remake recipes on their websites.


    To further ease your cooking, plan a week's worth of dinners in advance and prepare baggies with chopped vegetables when you have time (like after the kids are in bed) to reduce the amount of prep work you have to do on cooking day.

  14. I second the steel cut oats in the crock pot/slow cooker. I have a tiny little 4-cup crock pot and I get it going at night so that it is ready in the morning because I don't have time to fool around with that mess at 0445! You can dress it up in several, healthy ways: fresh blueberries, almond slivers, a dash of cinnamon. Other add-ons include: dried currants, sliced bananas, a little bit of wheat germ or ground flaxseed, raspberries, blackberries. A little swirl of peanut butter for some good fat and protein makes it yummy too.

    For dinners and such: there are a ton of grilled chicken recipes where you can take a ziptop bag, make the marinade ahead of time, toss is over the chicken, and throw it in the freezer. Just pull it out as needed. I buy a big bulk back of boneless, skinless breasts and prep them as soon as I get home from the grocery store and freeze them. I'll pull them out in the morning and then grill for dinner. Some of my favorite marinades include #1 juice of one lime, 1 T cumin, 1 T of red pepper flakes and #2 juice of one lemon and 1 T cracked black pepper. Womens Health magazine once had an article of like 100 such marinades, so if I can find a link I'll get it to you. We frequently will have these with simple vegetables. For example, the lime cumin chicken is served with 1 sliced roma tomato, 1 half of avocado cubed, and black beans (vitamins! minerals! good fats! fiber!) Hit up the produce aisle and steam broccoli, cauliflower, etc and use one of those ziplock quick steam bags.

    For what it is worth, I have helped my husband lose 40% of his body weight just by modifying his diet (clean eating, no drugs, no gimmicks) and introducing exercise 3-4x a week. It works. He has a blog if you're interested. I'll see if I can hunt down that WH article for chicken. I have made probably a good 20 of the different recipes.

  15. a favorite of ours:

    it's a one-pot meal, which i (as the dishwasher) really appreciate, and though it doesn't have any meat, it's very satisfying thanks to the beans and cheese.

  16. His LDL is 20? That's really good! Maybe he could stand to eat some more fat and cholesterol...

    1. I think it's pathological. He is not skinny.

  17. Thank you everyone for the recipe ideas!!!!

  18. the gluten free goddess website has some good recipes (not all gluten free, not all vegetarian, lots of pretty pictures)

    otherwise a few quick and easy favorites of mine are: sliced hard boiled egg on whole wheat bread/pita/etc with reduced fat shredded chz microwaved, can add a veggie if you want like spinach or steamed asparagus but it's really fast.

    90 second brown rice, canned rinsed black beans, reduced fat shredded chz, 100 cal pack wholey guacamole, diced tomato, cilantro, dried or fresh red onion. now that I have the hang of this it usually takes me < 10 minutes to make. measurements depend on what you want to eat/cals you want.

    other things, spike jarred spaghetti sauce with cooked lentils instead of ground beef or meat for protein and fiber, I throw in cooked spinach and extra mushrooms too.

    use quinoa instead of pasta or rice for a healthy variation.

  19. as a diet conscious med student with little time to cook, here's my go to 5 min lunch (or snack): Gazpacho!

    Into a Magic Bullet (or blender or whatever), toss in:
    a chunk of crusty bread
    1 large red vine ripe tomato
    ~3" of an english cucumber, peeled or unpeeled
    2 fresh basil leaves
    1 T of balsamic vinegar
    1-2T of good extra virgin olive oil
    a few grinds of black pepper

    Blend, pour into a bowl. Top w/ a little drizzle of that extra virgin olive oil.


    Oat or quinoa smoothie:
    take your favorite smoothie ingredients (frozen fruit, nonfat yogurt, honey, etc), and add in 2T of oats or quinoa. I like the quinoa to be cooked. If you're using it raw or cooked, remember to wash the quinoa. Its coated in saponin... secreted by the plant as a natural insect repellent. Its very H2O soluble, and tastes very bitter. Gotta wash it off!

    Generally, I start subbing in quinoa for most starches as its a complete protein. I also use borlotti beans for most other beans as it has the highest protein/carb ratio.


    Alton Brown has really great Oat waffle recipe ( I just cut the fat content in half, and use extra virgin olive oil instead of butter. It still comes out fantastic. The oats aren't boiled. They're toasted! It gives the waffles a great golden crusty texture on the outside while remaining pillowy on the inside. Lots of soluble fiber to feel fuller.

    If you couldn't tell, I HATE eating the library paste better known as hot oatmeal. So I usually find creative ways to sneak it in, ground, toasted, blended... it lends a nice "whole grain" flavor. But it doesn't give you the "I just ate a bag of cement" feeling.

    I also find great recipes in the mens' fitness magazines (the kind with w/ shirtless celebrities on the cover, not the kind with steroid-pumped meat tanks). They also include new exercise routines each issue so you don't get bored at the gym. I collected a year's worth of 'Mens Fitness' and the exercise routines run me through the year.

    1. Oh gosh, I forgot to sing praises about agave nectar! I'm normally very skeptical about the health food fads (goji berries, "cleanses," soy), but this one is pretty great. Agave nectar is a high-glycemic index sweetener syrup. It has calories, but in exchange, it won't have the embalming fluid aftertaste, unlike stevia or splenda. I buy the cheapest twin pack off amazon.

  20. Check out Most of her recipes are relatively easy.

  21. Orange Pork chops:
    You need:
    Boneless pork chops
    Low salt lemon pepper
    Olive oil
    Apple Cider Vinegar
    Low Sugar Orange Marmalade

    1.) Sprinkle the pork chops with your desired level of lemon pepper.
    2.) Cook them in a skillet with some olive oil (I use about 2 teaspoons) over medium-high heat until they are cooked all the way through.
    3.) Remove the pork chops from the skillet, lower the heat, add about a tablespoon of cider vinegar and between 1/3 and 1/2 cup of orange marmalade (depending on how much sauce you like)
    4.) Cook the marmalade and vinegar combination, stirring pretty constantly until it starts bubbling
    5.) Put the pork chops back in the pan for a couple of minutes to get all saucy and delicious.

    We usually serve this with plain couscous, which is great for soaking up some of the extra sauce, and a veggie. Very yummy and all together takes about 20 minutes.

    I strongly recommend putting water in the pan right away, otherwise the marmalade goop can be pretty sticky.

    Note: I got this from a cookbook at some point in the past, I am not citing the source because I'm trying to take credit, we've just been eating this for so long that I don't remember where it came from, and it's easy enough that I never use the book anymore.

  22. Smitten Kitchen ( ) has delicious and relatively easy to follow recipes. Some of them are healthier than others, but it's pretty easy to tell looking at the ingredient lists.