Blogging With Heart: Recipes that keep a healthy beat

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In honor of “Heart Month,” here are some heart healthy recipes recommended by the staff of Health Directions, Lexington Medical Center’s health and wellness component. The recipes are from the “Eat Right Live Light” cookbook written and compiled with Elizabeth Koester Morton, R.D. Enjoy!

Banana Granola Pancakes
1½ cups pastry flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1¾ cups nonfat buttermilk
2 egg whites, lightly beaten
2 cups bananas, sliced
½ cup fat free granola cereal

Combine flour, sugar and baking soda in medium sized bowl and stir to mix well. Stir in buttermilk and egg whites. Fold in bananas and granola. Coat a griddle or large skillet with a nonfat cooking spray and preheat over medium heat. For each pancake, pour ¼ cup of batter onto the griddle. Cook until tops are bubbly and edges are dry. Flip and cook for an additional minute, or until second side is golden brown. Serve hot, topped with honey, maple syrup or fruit sauce.

Nutrition Facts: Serving Size: 2 pancakes. Calories: 76. Total Fat: 0.5g. Saturated Fat: 0.2g. Cholesterol: 0.9mg. Sodium: 114.8mg. Carbohydrates: 15.7g. Fiber: 2.0g. Sugars: 5.3g. Protein: 3.2g.

Serves 16.

Chicken and Black Bean Chili
1 pound chicken breast, boneless and skinless
2 cups black beans
2 cups frozen sweet corn
1 onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 (10oz.) cans tomato sauce
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 teaspoons black pepper
3 jalapeno peppers, finely chopped
½ cup fresh cilantro, chopped

Place all ingredients except cilantro in crock pot. Cook on low for 8 hours. Fifteen minutes before serving, add cilantro and break apart chicken breasts into bite size pieces. Serve plain, over brown rice, or in low fat whole wheat tortillas.

Nutrition Facts: Serving Size: 1 cup. Calories: 295. Total Fat: 2.2g. Saturated Fat: 0.5g. Cholesterol: 32.9mg. Sodium: 492.3mg. Carbohydrates: 46.1g. Fiber: 10.2g. Sugars: 8.0g. Protein: 26g.

Serves 8.

Southern Okra
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon flour
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
2 cups sliced fresh okra
Boiling water
2 teaspoons canola oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 medium green pepper, chopped
3 medium tomatoes, peeled and chopped

Combine first four ingredients; set aside. In a covered saucepan, cook okra in boiling water for 10 minutes until tender. Drain and set aside. In a skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Saute onion and green pepper until tender. Stir in sugar mixture and tomatoes; cook for 5 minutes. Add okra and simmer until heated, stirring as little as possible.

Nutrition Facts: Serving Size: ½ cup. Calories: 59. Total Fat: 1.8g. Saturated Fat: 0.2g. Cholesterol: 0g. Sodium: 206.5mg. Total Carbohydrate: 10.7g. Fiber: 2.5g. Sugars: 4.6g. Protein: 1.6g.

Penne Pasta Primavera
2½ teaspoons cornstarch
¼ teaspoon white pepper
1½ cups evaporated skim milk
8 ounces penne pasta
2 teaspoons fresh garlic, minced
½ cup carrots, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, grated
½ cup fresh mushrooms, sliced
2 cups fresh broccoli flowerets
½ small red bell pepper, cut into thin strips
1 medium onion, cut into thin wedges

Combine cornstarch, pepper and milk in a jar with a tight fitting lid. Shake until the cornstarch dissolves. Set aside. Cook the pasta al dente according to package directions. Drain well, return the pasta to the pot and cover to keep warm. Coat a large skillet with nonfat cooking spray. Place over medium-high heat, add the garlic and stir-fry for 30 seconds. Add the vegetables along with 1 tablespoon water. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 to 5 minutes, or until the vegetables are crisp-tender. Add a little more water if the skillet becomes too dry. Reduce heat to medium and add pasta to the skillet mixture. Shake the milk mixture and add it to the skillet. Toss gently over medium heat for about 2 minutes or just until the sauce begins to boil and thicken slightly. Remove the skillet from the heat and add the Parmesan cheese. Toss gently to mix. Serve immediately.

Nutrition Facts: Serving Size: 1 ½ cups. Calories: 273. Total Fat: 1.9g. Saturated Fat: 0.5g. Cholesterol: 4.3mg. Sodium: 140.7mg. Carbohydrates: 50.1g. Fiber: 3g. Sugars: 3.9g. Protein: 14.2g.

Serves 5.

Brown Rice Chicken Bake
3 cups cooked brown rice
1 (10oz) package frozen green peas
2 cups cooked chicken breast, cubed
½ cup fat free mayonnaise
½ cup chopped celery
2 teaspoons soy sauce
¼ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
¼ teaspoon dried tarragon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 3-quart baking dish with cooking spray. Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Transfer to the baking dish, cover and bake at 350 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes.

Nutrition Facts: Serving Size: 1 cup. Calories: 238. Total Fat: 2.7g. Saturated Fat: 0.7g. Cholesterol: 39.7mg. Sodium: 397.4mg. Carbohydrates: 32.2g. Fiber: 4.2g. Sugars: 1.9g. Protein: 19.7g.

Serves 6.

Beef Stew
12 ounces boneless beef round roast, cut into cubes
½ cup onions, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
3 garlic cloves
2 potatoes, peeled and sliced
4 carrots, sliced
1 (14oz) can fat free beef broth
¼ cup nonfat/skim evaporated milk
1 teaspoon paprika
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons burgundy wine

Coat large skillet with nonfat cooking spray and heat over medium-high heat. Add beef, onions, green peppers and garlic. Cook and stir until the beef is browned. Stir in the potatoes, carrots and broth. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes or until the meat is tender. Stir in the milk and paprika. In a small container, stir the cornstarch and wine until smooth. Slowly stir this mixture into the beef mixture. Cook until slightly thickened and bubbly; cook and stir an additional 2 minutes.

Nutrition Facts: Serving Size: ¾ cup. Calories: 138. Total Fat: 2.5g. Saturated fat: 0.8g. Cholesterol: 20.8mg. Sodium: 90.8mg. Carbohydrates: 15.2g. Fiber: 2.1g. Sugars: 3.5g. Protein: 13.2g.

Serves 7.

Chocolate Delight
6 low fat graham crackers
1 cup powdered sugar
2 small containers fat free Cool Whip
1 (8 oz.) carton fat free cream cheese
2 small boxes instant sugar free chocolate pudding
3 cups skim milk
1-2 teaspoons Baker’s semi-sweet chocolate

Cover bottom of 13 by 9 by 2-inch pan with graham crackers. (Line walls of pan with crackers if desired.) Combine powdered sugar, 1 small cool whip and cream cheese. Beat until smooth. Spread evenly over crackers then refrigerate until firm. Mix chocolate pudding with skim milk. Pour over cream cheese layer, refrigerate until firm. Cover pudding mixture with remaining container of cool whip then grate semi-sweet chocolate over top layer. Refrigerate and serve.

Nutrition Facts: Calories: 121. Total Fat: 1g. Saturated Fat: 0.6g. Cholesterol: 2.1mg. Sodium: 2.96mg. Carbohydrates: 22.7g. Fiber: 0.4g. Sugars: 12.9g. Protein: 4.6g.

Serves 15.

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