This Simple Protein-Packed White Bean Salad is our favorite new mealtime hack to add a plant-based boost of protein and fiber to your next salad.

When nourishing your body, balance is key. Nourishing your body with nutrient-dense food not only helps support energy and immune function but creating delicious and healthy meals is a great way to cultivate new healthy practices and hone a new skillset.

With this in mind, healthy food options might be closer than you think. Maybe already in your pantry or fridge, and packed with health-boosting properties. When you think of  Fiber, beans may not be the first thing that comes to mind but they are a great source of soluble fiber and protein.

Finding creative ways to use these pantry staples such as a Simple Protein-Packed White Bean Salad is easy as opening your fridge and seeing what’s on hand.

Stripped

Beans

Beans are a rich source of fiber, especially soluble fiber. In addition to providing digestion health benefits, eating enough fiber is good for your entire body! We know the majority of our immune system lies within our gut so it’s so important we take care of our gut health with eating enough probiotic-rich foods or prebiotic foods that promote healthy bacteria, regular bowel movements, regulate blood sugars, and better nutrient absorption.



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Have you ever heard of spaghetti squash? If you have ever followed a low carbohydrate diet chances are that you have heard of this amazing winter squash that when cooked falls apart into spaghetti-like strands. Spaghetti squash is a low carbohydrate dieters dream, containing only 5 grams of carbohydrates per ½ cup serving. It is for this reason that it is also an ideal choice for those following the candida diet.

The candida diet also known as the anti-candida diet or yeast free diet, is the cornerstone of treatment for a condition know as candidiasis. Candidiasis is characterized by an overgrowth of Candida albicans in the intestinal system. Candida albicans is a typically benign type of yeast that is innately present in the intestinal system. Ideally Candida albicans will work in accord with “friendly” types of bacteria to create a unique intestinal microflora that helps to keep the body healthy. Unfortunately, numerous external factors enable Candida albicans to overgrow and morph into an opportunistic organism. These external factors include overuse of antibiotics, steroids, oral contraceptives, stress and diets high in processed/sugary foods. When Candida albicans overgrows the body often experiences numerous seemingly unrelated symptoms such as, joint pain, chronic fatigue syndrome, premenstrual syndrome, irritable bowel syndrome, chronic sinus infections, chronic yeast infections, chronic bacterial vaginosis, anxiety and depression. Once the delicate balance of the intestinal microflora is disrupted it is very hard to restore. The candida diet seeks to restore this balance by cutting off the food supply to the Candida albicans thereby starving and killing them. Although prescription and/or non-prescription antifungals may be necessary to treat candidiasis adhering to the candida diet is the most important part of treatment.

The candida diet eliminates yeast feeding foods and ingredients such as sugar, vinegar, processed foods, glutinous grains, dairy and fruit. The diet also requires eating only moderate amounts of complex carbohydrates and high-starch vegetables. This leaves low-starch vegetables, meat, poultry and fish to be enjoyed freely. With all of these limitations you can see why the spaghetti squash can be such an important food for the candida diet. The Spaghetti squash is extremely versatile and can be eaten as a side dish with meat, poultry or fish or enjoyed as the main course replacing some of those complex carbohydrates. Spaghetti squash works great as a main course and can be used instead of pasta in your favorite recipes. Additionally, spaghetti squash is an excellent source of vitamins A, B and C, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus and potassium. It is pretty readily available year round and will stay fresh for several weeks when stored at room temperature. Spaghetti squash is very easy to cook as you can bake, boil, steam or even microwave it.

For more information on living yeast free by following the candida diet visit Yeast Free Living.



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If you’re missing that frothy coffee house latte this ultra-creamy Cinnamon Coconut Latte will fill that void for a fraction of the cost! Plus it leaves you satisfied longer thanks to the addition of blood sugar-stabilizing fats.

Better coffee = A better day

I don’t know about you, but my morning cup of coffee can literally set the tone for my entire day. If it’s ‘off’ or, GASP, non-existent, it’s just not going to be a great day.

Few things are as satisfying as a really good cup of coffee to start the day—especially now with so much uncertainty in the world. And while you may already have a good thing going with your morning cup, we think you should give this Cinnamon Coconut Latte a try for a few reasons:

  • It’s delicious.
  • It’s incredibly creamy without the cream—making it perfect for anyone on a dairy-free diet (see recipe notes below for a dairy-free version) or those times when you can’t make it to the store for cream or half and half.
  • It’s filling thanks to a little fat.
  • It can help stabilize blood sugars (also thanks to slow-digesting fat).

 

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links that will not change your price but will share some commission.

Creamy, Frothy, Satisfying

Normally coffee is served with a meal but, let’s be honest, sometimes it IS the meal—especially for parents (or entrepreneurs, or those with long commutes, or those who aren’t a fan of breakfast).

While neither of us practices intermittent fasting, sometimes it just happens as working moms. Or when we travel. So adding a little extra fat to our morning coffee helps fend off the ‘hangries’ and keeps us going for a couple of hours until we can sit down for a real breakfast.

What’s Inside

  • High-quality, organic coffee – Like all things you put in your body, a good rule of thumb is to get the best quality you can source and afford. This is especially true when it comes to coffee since coffee beans are the most heavily sprayed crops we as humans consume (and it’s the third most sprayed agricultural crop behind cotton and tobacco). For this reason, we make organic coffee a priority. Purity Coffee is our coffee of choice because in addition to being organic it’s free of mold and mycotoxins.
  • Coconut oil – Coconut oil is rich in medium-chain triglycerides (which are metabolized differently than other fats making them a quick source of energy). It also lends the drink a mild and pleasant coconut taste.
  • Butter – Butter is a rich source of several vitamins including vitamins A, D, E, B12, and K2.
  • Non-dairy milk of choice – Adding a splash of milk (non-dairy or dairy) is optional but gives this Cinnamon Coconut Latte an extra bit of creaminess.
  • Cinnamon – Cinnamon is loaded with antioxidants and may reduce inflammation. It’s also delicious!
  • Vanilla – Vanilla makes this sugar-free beverage taste a little sweet despite the absence of sweetener. Of course, if you’d like yours sweeter, feel free to add a little honey or maple syrup before blending.

Blend, Blend, Baby

Tossing everything into the blender makes this Cinnamon Coconut Latte quick and easy. While we highly recommend a good blender, you can use an immersion blender with good results (blending the coffee in a jar rather than your cup will help prevent a big mess). As a last resort, you can use a battery-operated handheld frother, but you won’t get nearly as much thick and creamy froth on top (but it will work for travel or camping when you need your Cinnamon Coconut Latte fix)!

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Let’s Get Cookin’

Cinnamon Coconut Latte

  • Author: The Real Food Dietitians
  • Prep Time: 5 mins
  • Total Time: 5 mins
  • Yield: 1 serving 1x

Ingredients

  • 12 ounces strongly brewed coffee (we like Purity Organic dark roast)
  • 2 tsp. coconut oil
  • ½-1 tsp. ghee or unsalted grass-fed butter (for dairy-free option or if you’re allergic to dairy- add additional coconut oil)
  • ¼½ tsp. ground cinnamon
  • ¼ cup unsweetened coconut milk or almond milk (optional-adds more creaminess)
  •  tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 scoop collagen peptides (optional)

Instructions

  1. Brew coffee in a coffee maker or French press.
  2. Add all ingredients to the blender and blend on high for 15-30 seconds until creamy and frothy.
  3. Pour into a coffee mug, dust with additional cinnamon, if desired, and enjoy.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 latte (with dairy-free milk)
  • Calories: 155
  • Sugar: 0 g
  • Sodium: 71 mg
  • Fat: 13 g
  • Carbohydrates: 1 g
  • Fiber: 0 g

Pin it now, make it later!

 


All photos and content are copyright protected. Please do not use our photos without prior written permission. If you wish to republish this recipe, please rewrite the recipe in your own unique words and link back to the source recipe here on The Real Food Dietitians. Thank you!

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About Stacie Hassing

Stacie is a Licensed and Registered Dietitian from rural southern Minnesota where she and her husband reside on 5 acres with their two pups, Walter & Lucy. She’s a creator of simple and wholesome recipes, a lover of nature, a crossfitter, a seasonal runner, and she’s on a mission to inspire as many as she can live a healthier and happier life from the inside out.





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A list of resources that will help you crush your Whole30 and life after.

Below is a list of all of our Whole30 Resources that we have shared on The Real Food RDs Blog!

Whole30 Recipe Roundups

15 Satisfying Whole30 Egg-Free Breakfasts 

Stop breakfast boredom before it happens with one (or all) of these 15 Satisfying Whole30 Egg-Free Breakfasts!

30 Whole30 Instant Pot Recipes

Rounding up 30 Whole30 Instant Pot recipes so that you can get dinner on the table fast!

30 Whole30 Slow Cooker Recipes

Set it and forget it with these 30 Slow Cooker recipes for your Whole30 and beyond!

30 Whole30 Sheet Pan Recipes

30 Whole30 Sheet Pan Recipes for your busy weeknights. Quick to prep, quick to clean-up.

30 Whole30 Appetizer Recipes

Bring one of these 30 Whole30 Appetizers to your next party to keep you satisfied and on track!

 

Whole30 Side Dish Recipes

Add flavor to your meal with these 30 Whole30 Side Dish Recipes. You’ll never have a boring meal again!

Whole30 Side Dish Recipes

30 Whole30 Potluck Salad Recipes

Don’t be left with an empty plate! Here’s 30 Whole30 Potluck Salads everyone will enjoy.

30 Whole30 Soup, Stew & Chili Recipes

Thirty Whole30 Soups, Stews & Chilis for your Whole30 & beyond.

30 Whole30 Leftover Chicken Recipes

Make boring chicken a thing of the past with 30 drool-inducing Whole30 Leftover Chicken Recipes.

30 Whole30 Dressings, Sauces, Dips and Marinades

Whether it’s dipping, dunking or drizzling you’re after—we’ve got it all here with these 30 Whole30 Dressings, Sauces & Marinades.

Whole30 Meal Ideas

18 Easy Dietitian-Approved Whole30 Meals

Keep it simple with these 18 delicious Whole30-friendly meals that are dietitian-approved and can be made in a matter of minutes.

15 Whole30 Carb Sources 

Looking to add some carbs to your Whole30? Check out these 15 Whole30 Carb Sources that we can’t do without!

Meal Prep Resources

12 Meal Prep Menus + Grocery List 

Feeling overwhelmed by the thought of meal prepping? We’ve got you covered! Here are 12 easy-to-follow Meal Prep Menus + Grocery Lists. Including 5 Whole30-friendly meal prep menus!

Meal Prep Essentials

Whether you’re a weekend meal prep warrior or you’re just beginning, you can up your weekend meal prep game with these 14 Meal Prep Essentials.

Whole30 Meal Planning

Real Plans Meal Planning

Finally, a customized meal plan that allows you to spend less time in the kitchen and more time doing the things you love (while still eating healthy!). Whole30 meal plan option available PLUS you can add on 225+ of our very own recipes!


That’s a wrap, we hope you find these Whole30 resources helpful whether you’re on a Whole30 or not!

 

This post may contain affiliate links which won’t change your price but will share some commission.

All photos and content are copyright protected. Please do not use our photos without prior written permission. If you wish to republish this recipe, please rewrite the recipe in your own unique words and link back to the source recipe here on The Real Food Dietitians so credit is given where credit is due. Thank you!

About Stacie Hassing

Stacie is a Licensed and Registered Dietitian from rural southern Minnesota where she and her husband reside on 5 acres with their two pups, Walter & Lucy. She’s a creator of simple and wholesome recipes, a lover of nature, a crossfitter, a seasonal runner, and she’s on a mission to inspire as many as she can live a healthier and happier life from the inside out.



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Packed to the max with veggies and full of flavor, this Slow Cooker Healthy Hamburger Soup is a hearty, Whole30-friendly recipe you’ll want to add to your menu! It’s perfect for meal prep and makes for a tasty cook once, eat twice (or multiple times) kind of a meal!

Bowl of Slow Cooker Healthy Hamburger Soup

Literally packed to the max with veggies

A variety of starchy and non-starchy veggies combine with broth, seasonings, and tender chunks of ground beef to make this hearty, thick, and healthy slow cooker hamburger soup. Each serving provides 3-4 servings of vegetables, 7 grams of fiber, and 24 grams of protein. This is the kind of soup that will satisfy your hunger and your taste buds.

Ingredients for Slow Cooker Healthy Hamburger Soup

This post may contain affiliate links that won’t change your price but will share some commission.

Meal prep and freezer-friendly

I feel like I say this in every recipe post, but that’s because we love recipes that we can prep ahead and even freeze for further down the road, and we know you do too! We love a good cook once, eat twice (or multiple times) kind of a recipe. Healthy Hamburger Soup is a recipe you’ll want to add to a future meal prep, and it’s perfect for making and sharing with someone who could use a good, comforting, home-cooked meal—new mom, a friend or family member in a tough season, grandparent, or really anyone you want to share the real food love with.

Looking for guidance with meal planning? Check out Real Plans, a highly customizable online meal planning service that includes over 300 of our very own recipes.

Ingredients in the slow cooker for Healthy Hamburger Soup

Slow Cooker Healthy Hamburger Soup Ingredients

Feel free to change up the veggies with what you have on hand.

  • Ground beef – feel free to substitute ground turkey or chicken.
  • Sweet potato and Yukon gold potatoes – I really like the combination of sweet and Yukon potatoes, but if you wish, use one or the other.
  • Yellow onion
  • Green bell pepper
  • Garlic clove
  • Carrots 
  • Celery 
  • Canned fire-roasted diced tomatoes – while the fire-roasted diced tomatoes add more flavor, you can certainly use regular canned tomatoes (crushed, petite, diced, etc.) if that’s what you have on hand.
  • Tomato paste – this is what makes the soup nice and thick.
  • Beef broth – for beef broth I like Bare Bones brand or Kettle and Fire, but use what you have on hand. You could also use chicken, turkey, or vegetable broth.
  • Italian Seasoning 
  • Salt and pepper
  • Fresh green beans – frozen green beans could also work.
  • Kale – definitely optional, but I love the extra veggies it adds. You could also use spinach.

Healthy Hamburger Soup in a Slow Cooker

How to make Healthy Hamburger Soup

It’s simple! Broth the beef, chop the veggies, and add everything except for the green beans and kale to the slow cooker. Set the slow cooker to low and cook for 8 or so hours (or on high and cook for 4 or so hours). When you have an hour of cooking time left, toss in the kale and green beans. Serve with crackers, crusty bread, or Parmesan if you wish (this part is not Whole30 compliant).

Can I make it in the Instant Pot?

You can! While I haven’t tested this recipe in the Instant Pot, this is how I would make it:

  1. Select ‘Sauté’ on the Instant Pot and add the oil. Once the oil is hot, add ground beef, garlic, onions, and bell pepper, sauté for 5-7 minutes or until meat is cooked and no longer pink.
  2. Add the rest of the ingredients, except for the kale. Lock lid into place and flip valve to sealing position.
  3. Cook on high pressure for 12 minutes. Allow for 5-7 minutes of natural pressure release before flipping the valve to the venting position to release any remaining pressure.
  4. Remove lid. Turn the instant pot to sauté and stir in the kale. Continue to cook until kale is tender.

Bowl of Slow Cooker Healthy Hamburger Soup

How to freeze Healthy Hamburger Soup

  1. Make the soup.
  2. Transfer to a couple of glass 9×13‘s to cool. We like using 9×13’s so that the soup can spread out and cool quicker. You can use any larger dish you have on hand. It could be even a big soup kettle or pot.
  3. Once cooled, transfer the soup to a freezer-safe container or bag (or two or three), like this one (holds 2-3 servings) or these ones. Be sure to leave a little room in the container or bag as the soup will expand a bit as it freezes.
  4. Date the use-by date on the container and place it in the fridge. I like to set the use-by date for 3 months from the current date.

How to reheat Healthy Hamburger Soup from frozen

  1. Thaw in a water bath of warmish water. Once it breaks up transfer to a pot or microwave-safe container. The soup will likely be in frozen chunks.
  2. On the stove, heat over low to medium heat. Stir occasionally and bring to a boil.
  3. In the microwave, set microwave on low and microwave soup in the microwave-safe container for 5 minutes. After the 5 minutes, microwave in 1-minute increments on low until soup is nice and hot.

Bowl of Slow Cooker Healthy Hamburger Soup

Other slow cooker veggie-filled soups

Slow Cooker Beef and Bean Chili

Slow Cooker Beef Stew with Vegetables 

Slow Cooker Pumpkin Chili

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Let’s Get Cookin’

Slow Cooker Healthy Hamburger Soup

A variety of starchy and non-starchy veggies combine with broth, seasonings and tender chunks of ground beef to make this hearty, thick and healthy slow cooker hamburger soup. Each serving provides 3-4 servings of vegetables, 7 grams of fiber and 24 grams of protein.

  • Author: Stacie Hassing
  • Prep Time: 20 min
  • Cook Time: 8 hours
  • Total Time: 8 hours 20 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings (1 3/4 cups) 1x

Ingredients

  • 2 tsp. avocado oil or olive oil
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 10 oz. sweet potato, peeled and cubed
  • 10 oz. Yukon gold potatoes, cubed
  • 2 medium carrots, diced
  • 2 ribs celery, diced
  • 2 (14 oz.) cans fire-roasted diced tomatoes 
  • 6 oz. can tomato paste
  • 1 quart beef broth + additional if needed
  • 1 ½ Tbsp. Italian Seasoning 
  • 1 tsp. sea salt (plus more to taste)
  • ½ tsp. black pepper
  • 8 oz fresh green beans, cut into 1-inch pieces (can also use frozen green beans)
  • 2 cups packed kale, chopped and tough stems removed

Instructions

  1. In a large skillet over medium heat add the oil. Once hot add the ground beef, onion, green pepper and garlic cloves. Saute until ground beef is no longer pink. 
  2. Next add everything to the slow cooker except for green beans and kale. 
  3. Cook on low for 8-9 hours or on high for 4-5 hours. 
  4. With about one hour of cooking time left, add the green beans and kale. If you prefer your soup to be thinner, feel free to add additional broth at this time. Cook until the green beans are tender.
  5. Taste and season as needed before serving. 

Instant Pot Directions:

  1. Select ‘Saute’ on the Instant Pot and add the oil. Once the oil is hot, add ground beef, garlic, onions, and bell pepper, sauté for 5-7 minutes or until meat is cooked and no longer pink.
  2. Add the rest of the ingredient except for the kale and green beans if using frozen. Note: add 2 cups of broth vs. 1 quart. Lock the lid into place and flip valve to sealing position.
  3. Cook on high pressure for 10 minutes. Allow for 5-7 minutes of natural pressure release before flipping value to venting position to release any remaining pressure.
  4. Remove lid. Turn the instant pot to sauté and stir in the kale and frozen green beans. Continue to cook until kale is tender.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 3/4 cup (1/6 of recipe)
  • Calories: 350
  • Sugar: 13 g
  • Sodium: 850 mg
  • Fat: 7 g
  • Saturated Fat: 2 g
  • Carbohydrates: 47 g
  • Fiber: 7 g
  • Protein: 24 g

Pin now, make later!

Pin image for Slow Cooker Healthy Hamburger Soup


This post may contain affiliate links which won’t change your price but will share some commission.

All photos and content are copyright protected. Please do not use our photos without prior written permission. If you wish to republish this recipe, please rewrite the recipe in your own unique words and link back to the source recipe here on The Real Food Dietitians. Thank you!

Photo Credit: The photos in this blog post were taken by Jess of Plays Well with Butter

About Stacie Hassing

Stacie is a Licensed and Registered Dietitian from rural southern Minnesota where she and her husband reside on 5 acres with their two pups, Walter & Lucy. She’s a creator of simple and wholesome recipes, a lover of nature, a crossfitter, a seasonal runner, and she’s on a mission to inspire as many as she can live a healthier and happier life from the inside out.





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Salmon burgers are a great way to get more healthy fats in your diet, and when topped with a cool and crunchy cabbage mixture, plus a spicy-tangy tartar sauce, they’re anything but ordinary! These Salmon Burgers with Thai Cabbage Slaw and Sriracha Tartar Sauce are great for weeknight meals or meal preps—and we give directions for both stovetop and air-fryer.

This post was created in partnership with Primal Kitchen

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links that will not change your price but will share some commission.

Wow. Just wow.

That’s how we’d describe these Salmon Burgers with Thai Cabbage Slaw and Sriracha Tartar Sauce. They’re that good! And they’re also the very first recipe that we’ve ever made in an air-fryer (yes, we’re a little late to the party…). Of course, you can also make them on the stove-top so keep reading—we’d hate for you to miss out on this recipe.

Weeknight Winner + Meal Prep Hero

Whether it’s a casual weeknight dinner you’re looking for or a new meal prep recipe to add to your rotation, we’ve got you covered. You can have this meal on the table in about 35 minutes—even less if your salmon is precooked (leftover from another meal or canned) or you opt for a bag of coleslaw mix in place of the cabbage and carrots.

The patties can be made ahead and reheated for a quick lunch or dinner, and the dressing can be made ahead and tossed with the cabbage mixture when it’s time to eat.

And if you don’t have an air fryer, no worries, we’ve included directions for making them on the stove-top as well.

Looking for guidance with meal planning? Check out Real Plans, a highly customizable online meal planning service that includes over 300 of our very own recipes.

All about the sauce.

While the Salmon Burgers with Thai cabbage slaw are great on their own, adding a drizzle of spicy sriracha tartar sauce makes them great x 10. Admittedly, tartar sauce wasn’t something I kept on hand until recently when our friends at Primal Kitchen launched their new tartar sauce made with avocado oil. It’s nothing like that gloppy, oily tartar sauce of the past—this one is rich, creamy, and bright with the flavors of dill and lemon, with just enough pickle relish to give it the proper amount of tang.

Primal Kitchen Tartar Sauce is Whole30 Approved®, Keto and Paleo-friendly, and sugar-free, making it a tasty addition to our Salmon Burgers with Thai Cabbage Slaw.

Add a little extra zing to your tartar sauce with a hearty dose of sriracha (we like this one for a Whole30-friendly option because it’s sweetened with dates and fruit juice).

Heart-Healthy Fats? We’re here for ’em.

Salmon is one of our favorite sources of protein because not only is it delicious, it’s packed with long-chain omega-3 fatty acids that may reduce inflammation, decrease the risk of heart disease, and lower blood pressure.

While there is no set RDA (recommended daily allowance) for omega-3 fatty acids, consuming fatty fish like salmon twice a week can help you meet your needs in a delicious and satisfying way.


Salmon Burgers with Thai Cabbage Slaw and Sriracha Tartar Sauce Ingredients

  • Salmon – These salmon burgers use cooked salmon that’s then combined with eggs, almond flour, and spices before forming them into patties. You can cook the salmon by baking, broiling, grilling, or poaching it. You can also use canned salmon that’s well-drained with the large bones removed. To learn more about choosing safer seafood, check out this post.
  • Fresh lemon
  • Shallots – With a flavor somewhere between garlic and onions, shallots are delicious and probably grossly underused. But if you don’t have a shallot, don’t worry, you can replace it with more onion (red, white, or green) or a little extra garlic.
  • Green Onions
  • Fresh Cilantro
  • Eggs – Eggs are the primary binder that holds these salmon burgers together. We have tested the recipe without the eggs and while they were delicious, they didn’t stay together when cooked. If you need an egg-free option, we suggest topping a grilled salmon filet with the Thai cabbage slaw for all the flavors without the eggs.
  • Almond Flour – Almond flour, along with the eggs, keeps the burgers together. If you don’t have almond flour or need to replace it for allergy reasons, you can try using an equal amount of a gluten-free flour blend (this one is our go-to) or 2 tablespoons of coconut flour.
  • Shredded Cabbage – Green or purple cabbage will work here, or you can substitute bagged coleslaw mix to save time.
  • Shredded Carrots – A julienne peeler is one of my favorite tools for shredded carrots but you can also use a box grater or buy shredded carrots from the produce section.
  • Coconut AminosCoconut aminos are a popular soy and wheat-free alternative to soy sauce that gives the dressing a salty-tangy flavor. If you don’t need the recipe to be Whole30-friendly, you can replace the coconut aminos with tamari, or gluten-free soy sauce.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Fish SauceFish sauce is exactly what it sounds like, a salty sauce made from fish. It gives everything a delicious umami flavor and can be used wherever you need a little flavor boost. You can, however, omit it and add a little more salt to taste.
  • Fresh ginger – While fresh ginger is definitely the preferred choice for this slaw because of it’s bright, spicy flavor, you can use dried ginger in its place if that’s all you have on hand.
  • Tartar Sauce – Primal Kitchen Tartar Sauce made with avocado oil is our go-to when time is short because it’s delicious and convenient. But if you don’t have any on hand, you can find a delicious homemade tartar sauce recipe here.
  • Sriracha – Sriracha is a popular sauce made from red jalapenos and vinegar. It often contains sugar so if you’re looking for a Whole30-friendly option, we love this one because it’s sweetened with dates.


How to Make Salmon Burgers with Thai Cabbage Slaw

While the ingredient list is a little longer than most of the recipes we share, don’t let that intimidate you. These salmon burgers are easy to make. If you need a few shortcuts, you can use canned salmon in place of the cooked salmon filets and use bagged coleslaw mix instead of shredding your own cabbage and carrots.

Do I have to have an air fryer?

Not at all! Since this is literally the very first recipe we’ve ever shared that’s made in the air fryer we’ve also given you directions for making them on the stove-top. But if you’re looking to invest in an air fryer, I really like this one because it’s also a toaster oven, rotisserie oven, dehydrator (and more).

Can these be prepped ahead?

You bet they can be! You can make them as directed, then cool them and store them in the fridge to be reheated in a skillet, a toaster oven, or the microwave.

You can also prepare them just up to the point of cooking, then store them in the fridge until ready to cook.

For the slaw, if you plan to make it ahead, store the dressing separately from the cabbage mixture and add just before serving.

Other Salmon Recipes You May Like

Salmon Burgers with Avocado-Garlic Sauce

Raspberry Balsamic-Glazed Salmon

One-Pan Salmon and Veggie Bake

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Let’s Get Cookin’

Salmon Burgers with Thai Cabbage Slaw

  • Author: Jessica Beacom
  • Prep Time: 20 mins.
  • Cook Time: 15 mins.
  • Total Time: 35 mins.
  • Yield: Serves 4 1x
  • Cuisine: Whole30, Paleo, Dairy-Free

Ingredients

For the Burgers:

  • 12 oz. wild-caught salmon, baked or broiled, skin removed then chopped (may substitute 12 ounces of canned salmon with bones removed)
  • ½ lemon, juiced  (~2 Tbsp.) + ½ tsp. lemon zest
  • 1 small shallot, minced (may substitute 2 cloves garlic, minced)
  • 2 green onions, white and green parts thinly sliced
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ¼ tsp. pepper
  • 2 eggs
  • ¼ cup almond flour
  • 1 Tbsp. cooking fat of choice

For the Slaw:

  • 4 cups thinly sliced or shredded green cabbage (or coleslaw mix)
  • ¾ cup julienned or shredded carrots
  • 2 green onions, white and green parts thinly sliced
  • ½ cup fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
  • 1 ½ Tbsp. avocado oil or olive oil
  • 1 ½ Tbsp. coconut aminos (or 2 tsp. Tamari + 2 tsp. water if not Whole30)
  • 2 tsp. apple cider vinegar
  • Juice + zest of ½ lime
  • ¼ tsp. fish sauce (optional)
  • 1 tsp. grated fresh ginger (may substitute ½ tsp. dried ginger)
  • 1 large clove garlic, peeled and finely minced or grated

For the Sriracha Tartar Sauce:

Instructions

To Make the Burgers in the Air Fryer:

  1. Combine all of the salmon burger ingredients, except the coconut oil, in a large bowl and mix well. If the mixture is pretty wet, add additional almond flour 1 Tbsp. at a time.
  2. Form into 4 patties. Patties easily fall apart until they are cooked. Handle with caution.
  3. Spray the tops of the burgers with avocado oil spray. Air-fry at 350F for 10-12 minutes or until cooked through, flipping halfway through cooking time and spraying again with oil.

To Make the Burgers on the Stovetop:

  1. Combine all of the salmon burger ingredients, except the coconut oil, in a large bowl and mix well. If the mixture is pretty wet, add additional almond flour 1 Tbsp. at a time.
  2. Form into 4 patties. Patties easily fall apart until they are cooked. Handle with caution.
  3. Heat coconut oil on a griddle or pan to medium-high heat.
  4. Once hot (oil must be hot), carefully add the burgers to the pan and cook for 5-6 minutes on each side or until cooked through. Patties should sizzle when added to the pan.

To Make the Slaw:
1. Combine the cabbage, carrots, and green onions in a bowl.
2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the oil, coconut aminos, apple cider vinegar, lime zest and lime juice, fish sauce (if using), ginger and garlic. Taste and season with salt and pepper to taste.
3. Pour the dressing over the vegetables and toss well to coat.
4. Serve with salmon burgers and sriracha tartar sauce.

To Make the Siracha Tartar Sauce:

  1. Combine the tartar sauce with the sriracha. Stir to combine. Add additional sriracha, if desired.

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This post was made possible by our friends at Primal Kitchen. Although we received compensation for this post, the opinions expressed here are – as always – 100% our own. Thank you for supporting the great companies we work with thereby allowing us to continue creating great recipes and content for you.

All photos and content are copyright protected. Please do not use our photos without prior written permission. If you wish to republish this recipe, please rewrite the recipe in your own unique words and link back to the source recipe here on The Real Food Dietitians. Thank you!

About Jessica Beacom

Jessica is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist living in Boulder, CO with her hubby and two daughters. She’s been described as a ‘real food evangelist’ and loves sharing her knowledge with others to help them break free of the diet mentality and find their own food freedom. In her spare time she enjoys CrossFit, telemark skiing, mountain biking, teaching herself how to play the banjo and camping out under the stars.





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Knowing how to quickly prepare healthy and easy meals is key for being consistent with your healthy eating habits.

But sometimes meal prepping can be really time-consuming if you’re making a lot of recipes each week or it can become repetitive if you’re using the same basic ingredients.

And cooking everything from scratch, even if it’s a simple meal, may still be a little too much work after a busy day.

So I use a hybrid approach that makes it easier to cook healthy and easy meals in about 15 minutes! (Seriously, most of my meals take 15 minutes to make!) 

And, you don’t have to eat the same meal multiple times throughout the week!

I’m going to walk you through my entire process for making healthy and easy meals that you can make all week without getting bored. 

Using Meal Components to Make Cooking Easy and Fun

Meal components are interchangeable food items that go with everything else you cook — basically, it’s a meal planning mix and match.

If you’re familiar with meal planning or it’s already part of your life, then I’m sure you’ve seen some meal planning systems out there that rely on making full recipes or adding tons of things to one meal prep container to make a meal, right?

And sometimes that can create food fatigue or take hours of your weekend to prepare multiple recipes. 

You’ve not only just wasted money (most likely), but unfortunately, you’ve probably wasted your time from cooking, your energy, and have a higher chance of increasing food waste.

With what you’ll learn in this post, rather than batch cooking an entire meal you’re going to batch cook different ingredients — or meal components.

Batch cooking meal components and storing them solo in the fridge to use later in any recipe you like is key to making batch cooking work for you and for others in your household.

And an added bonus? This makes it easier for people with different tastes and food preferences to eat together. For example, my husband Jesse enjoys chicken every now and then, but I don’t eat meat. So on the weeks, he’s in the mood for that, we simply batch cook both the plant-based protein components and the animal-based protein components. Both of us can enjoy what we want, but don’t have to make two totally separate meals!

Throughout the week, you can mix and match these components to change up the flavor profile and give you an entirely new meal without more work! 

Let’s break this down step-by-step with the easy meal prep ideas you can use!

How to Make Quick, Easy and Nutrient-Dense Meals 

Before we dive into exactly what the easy meal prep ideas are, it’s important to have a general understanding of what to include in your meals to make sure you’re getting all of your vitamins, nutrients, and minerals that will keep you full, support your digestion, and provide you with stable energy throughout the day. 

Each meal should be a Foundational Five Nourish Meal

The Foundational Five is the guideline I use to ensure you’re getting the right mix of nutrients on your plate. 

It has five elements to it — protein, healthy fat, starchy carbohydrates, non-starchy carbohydrates, and a flavor factor. Each of these elements plays a role in what your body needs to function and feel its best. My nutrition philosophy is eating an abundance of plant-based, whole foods, so most of the suggestions below are plant-based and gluten-free, but can always be adjusted for your lifestyle and taste preferences. 

We’ll batch cook a few ingredients for each of these elements so you can have all of the ingredients to make your meals a Foundational Five.

1. Pick 2-3 Proteins for the Week

First, you’ll want to batch cook a few proteins that you can use throughout the week. 

There are quite a few plant-based protein options out there, but some of our favorites include spirulina, hemp seeds, nuts, lentils, nutritional yeast, seeds, beans, tempeh, tofu, and edamame.

If you consume animal proteins, be conscious of the source, how the animal was raised, treated, and the quality of the protein. 

All of my recipes, whether they have a plant-based protein or animal-protein can easily be swapped for the protein of your choice. If you don’t enjoy tempeh for example, you can use the recipe for tofu or chicken instead. 

If you have a household with some plant-based eaters and some meat-eaters, this also makes it easy for everyone to eat as much of the same meal as possible and just have the protein of their choice.

The Best Cooked Tofu

  • This takes less than 5 minutes to prepare and you just put it right into the oven to bake! Super simple!

Buffalo Tempeh

  • We love this recipe to add a little bit of heat to a Foundational Five Nourish Bowl.

Baked Citrus Tempeh

  • This is a go-to for a light and fresh taste to add into Foundational Five Nourish Bowls or Salads. 

Lemony Chickpea Salad 

  • This super easy recipe is so versatile — it can be served hot or cold, on top of a salad or nourish bowl or as a side dish.

The Easiest Black Beans Recipe

  • Giving a simple protein just a little bit of a flavor enhancement goes such a long way!

Maple Miso Glazed Salmon

  • If you still eat some animal protein, wild-caught salmon is packed with healthy fats and all you have to do is whip up a simple sauce and put the salmon into the oven.

2. Pick a Few Healthy Fat Options 

Healthy fats to include in your meals include things like nuts, seeds, avocados, oils, ghee, oil-based salad dressings, and tahini. 

Bonus: many of these you don’t even need to prep! 

You simply need to make sure you have them on hand to toss onto your meal.

But there are a few things you can do to dress these ingredients up and have them not only provide you with healthy fats but also provide a flavor factor to your dish. 

Spicy Tahini Sauce  

  • Drizzle on top or marinate and cook your veggies directly in it!

Simple Seed Mix

  • Make a big batch of this to sprinkle on top of Foundational Five salads, smoothies, or nourish bowls! Bonus — adds crunch textures to give your meal even more variety. 

Make Your Own Salad Dressing

  • I typically make one or two batches of salad dressings for the week to top on anything from salads to nourish bowls! 

3. Make 1 or 2 Starchy Carbohydrates

The next part of a balanced, Foundational Five Nourish Meal is starchy carbohydrates because they give you energy for your body to use throughout the day!

This includes things like gluten-free bread, beans, legumes, grains, oats, sweet potatoes, and bananas to name a few. 

I recommend having 1 or 2 starchy carbohydrate options prepped.

Here are a few easy meal prep ideas for your starchy-carbohydrates.

Simple Grains

  • You can cook grains plain and add the flavor factor to them later on if you want the flexibility to change the flavor throughout the week

Roasted Sweet Potato Mash

  • We love using sweet potatoes to change it up from grains, and this is a go-to recipe that you can make a big batch of for the week. 

Basil Pesto Potato Salad 

  • This is another one that can be served hot or cold, giving it an added layer of versatility. Bonus: make extra pesto to use on pasta, protein, or other veggies too! 

Mango Wild Harvest Rice

  • If you want to dress up your grains a little bit, this is a simple recipe that gives a lot of extra flavor to wild rice. 

4. Prepare an Abundance of Non-Starchy Carbohydrates

Be generous with your non-starchy carbohydrates! You can really pack these on as much as you’d like!

These types of carbohydrates include cauliflower, zucchini, mushrooms, broccoli, red bell peppers, eggplant, kale, spinach, romaine, tomato, celery, garlic, carrots, and beets.

One tip here: if you’re eating it fresh, you may consider chopping it on your meal prep day, so it’s ready to grab and go instead of needing to do the chopping the day of. With salad greens for example, I like having a big container of lettuce that’s already washed and cut and stored in an air-tight container. That just removes one more step when I go to make a meal. 

These are some of the simple ways we batch cook a ton of veggies!

Easy Sheet Pan Carrots  and The Best Roasted Broccoli You’ll Ever Need

  • These two sheet pan recipes are must-trys! Not only can you cook a lot at once with a sheet pan, but it allows you to cook multiple things at once because you can throw these in the oven while your grains are in a pot on the stove and you’re cooking your proteins. 

Easiest Crunchy Coleslaw

  • Texture is a really great way to change up a meal. Use this as a side, topped on veggie burgers, or mixed within a big salad for extra crunch.

Easy Pickled Cucumbers or Red Onion  

  • This simple recipe allows you to create your own fermented veggies that add a crunchy, crisp and satisfying flavor to your meals!

5. Choose 2 or 3 Flavor Factors

Sometimes easy meal prep can often meal boring meal prep! But that’s not the case here! I’m all about creating meals that are both nourishing and delicious. 

The flavor factor is things like your dressing, sauces, spices, and seasoning.

What my members of The Method Membership love most about using meal components is that it makes eating healthy both nutritious and delicious. No more boring and bland meals on repeat all week.

Having 2-3 flavor factors in mind that you’ll use throughout the week is a great way to change up the flavor of the batched ingredients and also get additional nutrients!

Here are a few easy meal prep ideas for the flavor factor that you can batch cook your protein or veggies in, make on the side, or prepare the day-of.

Maple Miso Glaze 

  • This glaze is perfect for cooking any of your proteins. 

Pad Thai Peanut Sauce

  • It’s all about variety with these meal components, and this is a sauce that you might not typically use as much as something like pesto or tomato sauce, which is more common. 

Make Your Own Salad Dressing

  • I typically make one or two batches of salad dressings for the week to top on anything from salads to nourish bowls! If you want a specific recipe to follow, try my Green Goddess Dressing.

How to Put These Easy Meal Prep Ideas Together 

By now, you’ll have a variety of Meal Components that you can mix and match throughout the week. 

So what does this actually look like? 

I often make tempeh and tofu, quinoa, roasted veggies, and homemade dressing. 

On Monday for lunch, I may add a Foundational Five Nourish bowl with baked citrus tempeh, a lot of fresh greens, quinoa, roasted veggies, with a lemon tahini sauce. 

I can then use those same ingredients for lunch the next day, but switch out the dressing and another component and that completely changed up the meal!

Throughout the week, you simply repeat this process, swapping out one or two meal components for another, always making sure you still have the Foundational Five on your plate. 

It’s really that easy!

Meal prep can become so much easier when you don’t have to think about creating full meal recipes for the whole week. Plus prepping in this way ensures you’re changing up your meals throughout the week, which not only allows you to enjoy new flavors but it also ensures you’re getting a variety of nutrients in your diet from different foods.



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Don’t even think about tossing out those overripe bananas! Here are 12 delicious and healthy recipes that call for brown, spotted bananas. Think muffins, waffles, smoothies, and more! All of the recipes listed are easy to make, gluten-free, and meal-prep friendly!

Overripe bananas = endless possibilities

Whether you’re one who purchases a bunch of bananas with the intention to enjoy them as is or you purchase a bunch with the intention to let them sit on the counter and become brown and spotted so that you can make a favorite banana recipe, you’ll surely find a couple of tasty recipes to try below. Today on the blog, we’re rounding up 12 recipes for you that call for overripe bananas. Twelve different ways you can enjoy overripe bananas in a delicious and healthy way!

Less sugar needed

Because overripe bananas provide plenty of sweetness, you can get by with adding much less sugar. In fact some of the recipes below don’t call for any additional sugar to be added.

How to freeze overripe bananas

When bananas start to become brown and spotted but you’re not yet ready to use them in a recipe, we recommend freezing them. Here is our method of freezing overripe bananas so that you can easily grab the amount you need (1/2 a banana for a smoothie, enough for a recipe, etc)  when you need them. Note: we find it best to freeze bananas before they turn totally black.

  1. Remove the peels from the bananas and cut them in half or thirds.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicon liner and place bananas on the pan so that they do not touch. This step is key to prevent them from freezing together in one big chunk.
  3. Place the pan in the freezer and allow the bananas to freeze.
  4. Once frozen transfer bananas to a zip-top bag, stasher bag or freezer-safe container for storing.
  5. Store in freezer for up to 3 months.

12 Delicious Ways to Use Overripe Bananas

A combination you can’t beat—peanut Butter and banana! The perfect toaster-friendly waffle.

Get the recipe here!

A staple recipe for sure in our kitchens! A few ingredients you probably have on hand is all it takes to make these muffins. Feel free to substitute the chocolate chips with anything that sounds good to you or omit them altogether.

Get the recipe here!

These muffins come with a nutrient boost of mashed sweet potato (or pumpkin). They’re grain-free and totally delicious. Add chocolate chips if you wish!

Get the recipe here!

Yep! We did it again, the combo that can’t be beat. Peanut Butter Banana Overnight Oats make for a tasty, meal-prep friendly breakfast.

Peanut Butter Banana Overnight Oats

Get the recipe here!

A sneaky way to add veggies! Zucchini makes for a great addition in these baked oatmeal cups.

Get the recipe here!

Another staple in the kitchen of many homes. This baked oatmeal is one you’ll want to try! We like to top it with….you guessed it, peanut butter as well as a few slices of bananas. It makes for the perfect breakfast or snack that can be enjoy warm or cold.

Photo showing a spoonful of Banana Chocolate Chip Baked Oatmeal

Get the recipe here!

Essentially this is a blueberry muffin recipe baked into a 9×9 dish. These bars are great for grab-and-go and you can top them with peanuts, any chopped nuts, yogurt, or however you please.

Get the recipe here!

These mini muffins make for a fun little snack for all ages. They come together quick and make for a tasty bite-size snack or treat. Made with no added sugar (other than what’s in the chocolate chips).

Get the recipe here!

Another baked oatmeal you’ll want to try! Made simple with frozen berries so that you can enjoy it all year around, not just when berries are in season. We like it topped with whipped topping and crushed pecans.

Get the recipe here!

As that name says, this is our Go-To Green Smoothie and made with only 5 ingredients: banana, avocado, spinach, milk of choice, and protein powder of choice.

Get the recipe here!

A cool and creamy treat for all to enjoy! Vegan, dairy-free, and paleo friendly. Feel free to sub any nut or seed butter of choice.

Get the recipe here!

A smoothie that everyone will love, kids and adults!

Get the recipe here!

That’s a wrap. We hope you enjoyed this roundup of 12 Delicious Ways to Use Overripe Bananas!

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All photos and content are copyright protected. Please do not use our photos without prior written permission. If you wish to republish this recipe, please rewrite the recipe in your own unique words and link back to the source recipe here on The Real Food Dietitians. Thank you!

Photo Credit: Some of the photos in this blog post were taken by Jess of Plays Well with Butter

About Stacie Hassing

Stacie is a Licensed and Registered Dietitian from rural southern Minnesota where she and her husband reside on 5 acres with their two pups, Walter & Lucy. She’s a creator of simple and wholesome recipes, a lover of nature, a crossfitter, a seasonal runner, and she’s on a mission to inspire as many as she can live a healthier and happier life from the inside out.



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Sip your way to a healthier you with this delicious Banana Berry Smoothie. It’s dairy-free, packed with a good source of fiber and contains the perfect balance of quality protein, carbs, and healthy fats making for a tasty and nourishing breakfast or snack.

Anti-Aging Banana Berry Smoothie

Smoothies, when made right, can make for a fabulous breakfast option!

Most recently I have been enjoying a smoothie every day as a satisfying breakfast! Smoothies are quick and easy to make and they are an easy way to get in an array of nutrients all at once. Banana Berry Smoothie has made it’s way into my rotation of smoothies, along with our Go-to Green Smoothie and Super Sunrise Smoothie.  These smoothies are made with just a few wholesome ingredients, are low in sugar, high in protein and take all of a few minutes to make. With being a new mom, I’m all for fast and easy meals that taste good and are satisfying. Banana Berry Smoothie fits the bill on all accounts!

Anti-Aging Banana Berry Smoothie

Banana Berry Smoothie Ingredients:

  • Frozen Banana – I almost always add about a 1/2 of a small frozen banana to my smoothie. I like the sweetness and creaminess it adds. For a lower sugar option you could add a 1/2 of a green apple.
  • Frozen Mixed Berries – mixed berries are rich in antioxidants, high in fiber and add that fruity flavor we love.
  • Spinach (optional) – if you wish add a handful of nutritious greens. It will change the color of the smoothie a bit but won’t change the taste and will add a nice boost of nutrients.
  • Nut Butter – a source of healthy fats and enhances the creaminess. Use whatever nut or seed butter you would like.
  • Avocado – A great way to sneak in fiber and healthy fats.
  • Chia Seeds – hello fiber!! You could also add flaxseed or omit this all together.
  • Protein powder of choice or Greek yogurt – feel free to add your favorite protein powder. I personally like to add a 1/2 cup of Greek yogurt to my smoothies plus a scoop of collagen peptides. For dairy-free use collagen or a plant-based protein powder. For vegan, use a plant-based protein powder.
  • Milk of choice – you’ll need some kind of liquid to blend it all together. Use what you have on hand.

This post may contain affiliate links that won’t change your price but will share some commission.

Why Collagen Peptides?

As mention above, you can add any protein powder of choice. I personally like to add collagen and I wanted to explain why and what the health benefits are. So before we get to the Banana Berry Smoothie recipe, here are a few benefits of the amino-acids found in collagen and why one might want to add this supplement to their diet .

The short chain amino acids found in collagen peptides are easy to digest, highly-bioavailable (meaning your body can make full use of them) and they’re also a rich source of important amino acids such as glycine, proline, and glutamine which are necessary for detoxification, immune function, healthy digestion, bone health, skin health as well as growth and repair of tissue, tendons, joints and muscles.

  • Promotes healthy skin, hair, and nails. Collagen is a building block for the largest organ of the body, your skin. As stated above, as we age collagen production naturally decreases causing wrinkles and thinning skin. Supplementing with collagen daily can improve skin hydration, fine lines and overall appearance of skin. It also supports the growth of hair and nails.
  • Maintains a healthy gut barrier and supports good digestion. Glutamine and glycine, two amino acids abundant in collagen are essential for healthy digestion. Glutamine is the preferred fuel for cellular reproduction in the gut and supports the healing and growth of new cells and tissue that makes up the intestinal tract. Glycine contributes to the production of bile salts which helps to digest fat and promotes adequate gastric secretion in the stomach needed for the breakdown of food.
  • Enhances the immune system. Glutamine, found in collagen, is a key amino acid for a healthy and strong immune system due to its involvement in several immune functions. Glutamine also speeds healing following an injury, stress, surgery and most major illnesses thanks to its involvement in both cellular turnover and repair and stimulation of immune cells.
  • Improves joint and bone health. Collagen is essential for maintaining and building cartilage. Your body can produce its own collagen with proper hydration and nutrition, however, as you age your ability to produce the collagen essential for supple cartilage decreases and thus increases the likelihood of developing osteoarthritis or pain caused by bone rubbing on bone. Supplementing with collagen is an easy way to support joint health by providing the body with the collagen it needs to build and maintain cartilage in your joints. Collagen also contributes to bone health by supporting healthy bone and mineral density.
  • Detoxification. Glutamine and glycine are important for liver health and supporting your body’s natural detoxification pathways. Both of these amino acids are necessary for the production of glutathione which is the antioxidant that’s required by the liver to properly do its job.

I personally like to use Primal Kitchen Collagen Peptides. For 10% off of all Primal Kitchen products use code: REALFOODRDS

How to make Banana Berry Smoothie

It’s simple. Add ingredients to a high-powered blender and blend until smooth and creamy. I like to make smoothies on the thicker side so sometimes I have to stop the blender scrap the sides and repeat.

Other Smoothie recipes you’ll love

Go-to Green Smoothie

Super Sunrise Smoothie

Margarita Green Smoothie

Strawberry Cheesecake Smoothie

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Let’s Get Cookin’

Banana Berry Smoothie

  • Author: The Real Food Dietitians
  • Prep Time: 5 mins
  • Total Time: 5 mins
  • Yield: 12 servings 1x
  • Category: Smoothie
  • Method: Blender
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Ingredients

  • 1/2 small banana, frozen
  • 3/4 cup mixed berries, frozen
  • 1 handful of spinach (optional)
  • 1 Tbsp. almond butter or nut butter of choice
  • 1/4 avocado
  • 1 tsp. chia or flax seeds
  • 2 scoops collagen peptides or protein of choice
  • 1/21 cup unsweetened almond milk or milk of choice
  • 1/2 cup ice
  • optional – 1/2 cup Greek yogurt (omit for dairy-free or vegan)

Instructions

  1. Place ingredients in a high-powered blender and blend until smooth. For a thinner smoothie add 1 cup of liquid for a thicker smoothie start with a 1/2 cup and add more until desired consistency is achieved.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 smoothie (full recipe)
  • Calories: 380
  • Sugar: 15 g
  • Sodium: 300 mg
  • Fat: 21 g
  • Carbohydrates: 36 g
  • Fiber: 12 g
  • Protein: 19 g

Pin now to make later!


This post may contain affiliate links which won’t change your price but will share some commission.

All photos and content are copyright protected. Please do not use our photos without prior written permission. If you wish to republish this recipe, please rewrite the recipe in your own unique words and link back to the source recipe here on The Real Food Dietitians. Thank you!

About Stacie Hassing

Stacie is a Licensed and Registered Dietitian from rural southern Minnesota where she and her husband reside on 5 acres with their two pups, Walter & Lucy. She’s a creator of simple and wholesome recipes, a lover of nature, a crossfitter, a seasonal runner, and she’s on a mission to inspire as many as she can live a healthier and happier life from the inside out.





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Any night of the week can become ‘Taco Tuesday’ when you’re serving up this delicious and budget-friendly Healthy Taco Hot Dish. We’ve taken all of the best flavors of one of our favorite handheld foods and combined them into one cozy hot dish (that’s midwestern speak for ‘casserole’, dontcha know?)

This post was created in collaboration with our friends at the Minnesota Beef Council.

Comfort food at it’s finest

Being that Stacie and I both grew up in Minnesota, we’re no stranger to hot dishes – meals baked in a casserole dish that usually contains some kind of protein, starch, and sauce (typically a can of condensed cream of something). For those of you who grew up outside of the midwest, you probably call them casseroles or bakes but whatever you call them, they’re usually warm, cozy, comforting and cheesy and perfect for stretching your grocery budget or feeding a family.

Tacos are everything

When the folks at the Minnesota Beef Council approached us about creating a one-dish recipe using lean ground beef my mind went right to something taco-esque because, well, tacos are everything. Warm, spicy, cheesy, somewhat basic yet familiar and comforting. So as a shoutout to our shared Minnesota roots, we’re sharing this Healthy Taco Hotdish to bring a little comfort to your own dinner table and help you stretch your grocery budget just a bit.

Ground beef for the nutrition win!

Lean ground beef is an ideal choice when it comes to hot dishes because it’s so versatile. Adding loads of veggies and a can of black beans to the mix not only adds vitamins, minerals, and fiber, it also makes this Healthy Taco Hotdish more filling, colorful, and well, healthy.

It’s definitely a far cry from the cream of mushroom-based, tater tot-topped hot dishes of my youth but I’m 100% here for this soul-satisfying remake of one of my favorite foods.

This post may contain affiliate links that will not change your price but will share some commission.

Healthy Taco Hot Dish Ingredients

Feel free to change up the veggies to use what you have on hand or what’s in season. Carrots will work but you’ll want to dice them pretty small and cook them until almost tender. Adding them to the skillet with the ground beef will give them more time to cook. You can also add a few handfuls of spinach or kale to the dish before baking if you’ve got some greens to use up or want to add more color.

  • Ground beef – Beef is an excellent source of 10 essential nutrients including protein, zinc, iron and B vitamins to support overall good health and it’s delicious. Ground beef is also incredibly versatile and budget-friendly.
  • Onion – Any color onion will do for this recipe but white onions tend to be my go-to for Mexican-inspired dishes because they tend to have a sharper, more pungent flavor than their yellow counterparts but really, any onion will do. You can even substitute a bunch of green onions (scallions) if that’s what you have on hand.
  • Bell pepper – Like onions, any color will do here. I prefer red, yellow, or orange peppers over green ones for the most part but those can also be more expensive so use what works for your taste and budget. Frozen peppers will also work for this recipe, just allow them to partially defrost before adding them to the dish with the canned tomatoes.
  • Zucchini – Zucchini adds texture, color, and bulk to this Healthy Taco Hotdish and it can easily be swapped for yellow squash or even more onions or bell pepper if you don’t happen to have one on hand.
  • Garlic – This probably goes without saying but, garlic is good and makes everything it touches better. Of course, if you don’t have fresh garlic on hand you can substitute garlic powder in the recipe with good results.
  • Taco seasoning – This is where the taco flavor comes in so use your favorite store-bought taco seasoning (we like this one) or make your own using our Homemade Taco Seasoning.

 

  • Canned diced tomatoes – While any canned, diced tomatoes will work we’re big fans of the fire-roasted variety which adds an extra delicious dimension of flavor. Choosing canned tomatoes without added salt lets you control how much salt you add in order to suit your taste.
  • Tomato paste – Always keep tomato paste on hand. It’s a great way to add richness to any dish thanks to its ultra-concentrated flavor.
  • Beef broth – This may be obvious but like goes with like so beef broth is a natural choice for this dish since we’re using ground beef but if you just so happen to be out, other types of broth will work or, in a pinch, you can use water.
  • Frozen corn – While not a big part of this recipe, it adds color and texture and surely you have a half-empty, nearly freezer-burned bag of frozen corn knocking around in your freezer that would be perfect for using up in this dish…but if not, no worries. Just leave it out.
  • Black beans – Pinto beans will also work well for this recipe. If you’re using canned beans just be sure to drain and rinse them well before adding them to the dish. And if you’re the type who prefers to use dried beans, let ‘er rip (no pun intended). A 15-ounce can of beans yields roughly 1 ½ cups of cooked beans.
  • Long-grain white rice – We’ve only tested this recipe with long-grain white rice though I’m sure medium-grain white rice, jasmine, or basmati rice would also work. Avoid using short-grain rice like sushi or arborio rice since they’d likely be too sticky.
  • Cheese – Yes, please. This IS a hot dish, after all. Pretty much any mild cheese will work but cheddar and Monterey jack gave us the best results texture- and taste-wise during testing (read: cheese pull on point). If you’re looking for a dairy-free option, just leave the cheese out entirely. It will still be delicious.

How to Make Healthy Taco Hot Dish

  1. Start by sauteeing the onions, peppers, and ground beef. When the ground beef is almost cooked through, add the zucchini, garlic, and taco seasoning and cook a little longer until the zucchini is tender.
  2. Transfer the meat and veggie mixture to the prepared baking dish. Add remaining ingredients (reserving 1 cup of cheese for later).
  3. Cover the dish tightly with foil and bake for 45 minutes – resist the urge to open the oven or peek under the foil while it bakes.
  4. After 45 minutes, remove the foil and sprinkle remaining cheese (and possibly more, if that’s how you roll) over the top and bake another 5-10 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
  5. Remove the baking dish from the oven and allow it to stand for 5 minutes before serving with toppings of choice.

How to Prep Healthy Taco Hotdish Ahead

  1. Cook the meat and veggie mixture as directed in steps 3 and 4. Cool and store in a covered container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
  2. When it’s time to cook, continue as directed picking up where you left off at step 5, adding an extra 5 minutes to the initial baking time (i.e. when it’s covered with foil).

You can also make this as directed then cool and refrigerate until ready to reheat in a covered skillet, in a toaster oven, or in the microwave.

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Let’s Get Cookin’

Beef Taco Hotdish

  • Author: Jessica Beacom
  • Prep Time: 20 mins.
  • Cook Time: 50 mins.
  • Total Time: 1 hr, 10 mins.
  • Yield: Serves 8 1x
  • Category: Gluten-Free, Egg-Free, Nut-Free

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • ½ medium onion, diced
  • 1 small bell pepper, diced
  • 2 small zucchini, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced (may substitute a scant ½ tsp garlic powder)
  • 2 Tbsp. homemade taco seasoning (or store-bought)
  • 1 (14-oz.) can fire-roasted diced tomatoes
  • 1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
  • 2 ¾ cups beef broth
  • ½ cup frozen corn
  • 1 (15-oz.) can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup uncooked long-grain white rice
  • 1 ½ cups (6 ounces) shredded cheddar or Monterey jack cheese, divided
  • Optional toppings: Salsa, diced avocado, sour cream, fresh cilantro, lime wedges, pickled jalapenos, etc.

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375F.
  2. Grease (or spray) and a 9×13-inch baking dish and set aside.
  3. Place a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. When the pan is hot, add the ground beef, onion, and bell pepper. Cook until beef is just barely pink and onions and peppers have softened. About 8 minutes.
  4. Add zucchini, garlic, and taco seasoning. Stir and cook an additional 3-4 minutes or until zucchini is just tender.
  5. Remove from heat and drain excess fat from beef mixture if there is quite a bit. Transfer the meat and veggie mixture to the greased baking dish. 
  6. Add the diced tomatoes, tomato paste, beef broth, drained beans, corn, rice, and ½ cup shredded cheese to the baking dish and stir to combine.
  7. Cover the baking dish with foil and bake for 45 minutes. Remove the foil and sprinkle remaining cheese over the top and continue to bake for 5-10 minutes or until the cheese is bubbly.
  8. Allow the hot dish to stand for 5 minutes before serving with toppings of choice.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1/8th recipe (without toppings)
  • Calories: 430
  • Sugar: 6g
  • Sodium: 500mg
  • Fat: 10g
  • Saturated Fat: 5g
  • Carbohydrates: 57g
  • Fiber: 6g
  • Protein: 25g

Pin it now & Make it later!

Pin image for Healthy Taco Hot Dish


This post was made possible by our friends at Minnesota Beef Council. Although we received compensation for this post, the opinions expressed here are – as always – 100% our own. Thank you for supporting the great companies we work with thereby allowing us to continue creating great recipes and content for you.

Photo Credit: The photos in this blog post were taken by Jess of Plays Well with Butter

About Jessica Beacom

Jessica is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist living in Boulder, CO with her hubby and two daughters. She’s been described as a ‘real food evangelist’ and loves sharing her knowledge with others to help them break free of the diet mentality and find their own food freedom. In her spare time she enjoys CrossFit, telemark skiing, mountain biking, teaching herself how to play the banjo and camping out under the stars.





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