Thursday, March 28, 2013

Chicken, Tomato and Broccoli Stir-Fry Salad

Add this side dish to any meatless main course.

serves 6 ( 3 points +)

  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. crushed garlic
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper
  • 2 c. shredded, cooked chicken breast
  • 4 c. fresh broccoli florets
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes
  • 1/4 c. fat-free chicken broth
  • 2 T. fresh lemon juice

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet or wok. Add chili powder, garlic, salt and pepper. Stir to combine. Add broccoli and tomatoes. Cook until tomatoes begin to soften, then smash with the back of a spoon. Add chicken to the pan with broth and heat through. Drizzle on fresh lemon juice and toss to coat. Serve hot.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Crispy Chicken, Rice and Black Bean Burritos

This quick, filling and delicious recipe is sure to go in the Mexican food favorites!

serves 8 ( 9 points +)

  • 1 c. cooked, shredded boneless, skinless chicken breast
  • 1 can black beans ( 15 oz) drained and rinsed
  • 1 c. diced red bell pepper
  • 1/4 c. finely chopped onion
  • 1/4 c. fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1-1/2 c. cooked rice
  • 2 T. lime juice
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 8 oz. Velveeta Mexican cheese, grated ( about 2 c.)
  • 8 burrito sized flour tortillas ( 4 points each or less)

In a medium bowl, stir all ingredients together until blended.
Spoon mixture evenly down the center of each tortilla. Fold in sides and roll. 
Coat burritos with nonstick spray. Place four burritos, seam side down on a griddle or skillet over medium heat. Cook until golden brown on one side. Flip and cook until the other side is golden brown. Remove and keep warm. Repeat with remaining burritos.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Shaved Carrot and Zucchini Salad

This pretty, healthy and delicious salad can be made using a mandoline or Y-shaped vegetable peeler. Be careful when using a mandoline! I learned this lesson the hard way.

serves 6 ( 2 points +)

  • 2 T. olive oil
  • 2 T. fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 tsp. sugar
  • 2 c. thinly shaved carrot
  • 2 c. thinly shaved zucchini
  • 1/4 c. thinly sliced red onion
  • 1/4 c. fresh, flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  • salt and pepper

Combine first 4 ingredients in a bowl, stirring well. Add carrot, zucchini and onion; toss. Sprinkle with parsley, salt and pepper.

adapted from "Cooking Light"

Sweet and Sour Chicken

This is definitely one of the better recipes for sweet and sour chicken that I have tried. My daughter recently tried this recipe from Pinterest, and when I saw it, I knew that I could lighten it a bit without affecting the flavor. This recipe is still a bit higher in points, so budget accordingly. If you would like to serve over rice, 1/2 c. instant long-grain rice is 2 points +.

serves 8 ( 11 points +)

  • 2-1/2 c. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into cubes
  • salt and pepper
  • 1/2 c. cornstarch
  • 1/2 c. egg beaters
  • 4 T. canola oil, divided


  • 1-1/2 c. packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 c. ketchup
  • 1 c. white distilled vinegar
  • 2 T. low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tsp. garlic salt

Preheat oven to 350.
Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Working in batches, coat half of the chicken in cornstarch. Then dip in egg beaters.
Heat a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray and 2 T. oil. Add half of the chicken and brown. Transfer to a 13 x 9 inch pan. Repeat with remaining chicken, cornstarch and oil.

Whisk sauce ingredients together until smooth. Pour over chicken and stir to coat. Bake for 15 minutes. Stir again. Bake an additional 15 minutes.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Cinnamon Roll Cookie Bars

This recipe, which I adapted from Pinterest to make more points friendly, was a nice, quick way to make a little treat.

Makes 32 bars ( 3 points +)


  • 1 box yellow cake mix
  • 1/2 c. ( 1 stick) light butter, melted
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 c. packed brown sugar
  • 2 T. cinnamon


  • 1 c. powdered sugar
  • 2 T. skim milk

Preheat oven to 350.
Mix bar ingredients together and pour into a 13 x 9 pan coated with nonstick spray. Bake for 25 minutes. Cool slightly.
Combine icing ingredients and spread over the top of bars. Cut into 32 bars.

Bacon, Ranch, Chicken Mac and Cheese

A tasty twist on the traditional!

serves 4 ( 12 points +)

  • 8 oz. uncooked cavatappi
  • 1 slice applewood smoked bacon
  • 8 oz. boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1 T. butter
  • 1 T. flour
  • 1/3 c. Campbell's Healthy Request Cream of chicken soup
  • 3/4 c. reduced-fat shredded Italian Cheese blend
  • 1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. dried dill
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 c. reduced-fat Colby Jack cheese, shredded

Cook pasta; drain.
Meanwhile, cook bacon in a large nonstick skillet until crisp. Remove and finely chop.
Return skillet to stove and cook chicken pieces in the bacon drippings until done. Remove from pan and set aside.
Melt butter in skillet. Whisk in flour. Mix soup with milk and gradually add to flour mixture, whisking until thickened. Remove from heat. Cool 3-4 minutes. Stir in Italian cheese blend, onion powder, garlic powder, dill and salt. Stir in chicken and pasta. 
Transfer mixture to an 8 inch square baking pan. Top with crumbled bacon and Colby-Jack cheese.
Place under broiler for 2-3 minutes or until cheese melts and browns.

adapted from "Cooking Light"

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Lemon Cream Dessert

A light, spring-time dessert!

serves 18 ( 5 points +)

  • 1/2 c. ( 1 stick) light stick butter
  • 1 c. flour
  • 1/2 c. finely chopped pecans
  • 8 oz. reduced-fat cream cheese
  • 1 c. powdered sugar
  • 12 oz. Cool Whip Free, divided
  • 2 boxes instant, sugar-free lemon pudding
  • 3 c. skim milk

Preheat oven to 350
Melt butter in a saucepan. Stir in flour and pecans. Press into the bottom of a 13 x 9 pan. Bake for 15 minutes. Cool completely.
Beat cream cheese with powdered sugar until smooth. Fold in 4 oz. Cool Whip Free. 
Spread cream cheese mixture over crust.
Beat pudding with milk. Spread over cream cheese layer. Top with remaining Cool Whip. Cover and refrigerate until serving.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Honey Butter Turnips

This was my first time trying turnips! They are low carb, healthy, loaded with antioxidants and potassium. The slightly tart flavor was offset nicely by the sweetness of the honey. We all enjoyed them.

serves 8 ( 2 points +)

  • 2- 2 1/2  lbs. turnips, peeled and cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 3 T. honey
  • 3 T. butter, melted
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • dried thyme

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a large jelly roll pan with nonstick spray. Place the turnips on the baking sheet. Drizzle with melted butter, honey, salt, pepper and thyme. Toss to coat. Bake for 40 minutes or until tender, stirring once.

Green Beans Amandine

Fresh tasting and savory!

serves 4 ( 3 points +)

  • 1 lb. fresh green beans, trimmed
  • 1 T. butter
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. crushed garlic
  • 1/4 c. sliced almonds
  • 1 tsp. fresh lemon juice
  • salt and pepper to taste

Place green beans in a large saucepan filled with water. Bring to a boil. Boil 8-10 minutes or until crisp-tender. Drain.
Meanwhile, heat butter and olive oil in a skillet. Add almonds and cook until browned and fragrant. Stir in drained green beans, lemon juice, salt and pepper.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Chicken with Black Bean, Roasted Red Pepper and Avocado Salsa

This dish was not only quick, it was beautiful and delicious. I hope you like it!

serves 8 ( 5 points +)

  • 3-4 T. lime juice, divided
  • 8 ( 4 oz) boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
  • 1 can ( 15 oz) black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 roasted red pepper, diced
  • 1/4 c. finely chopped red onion
  • 1/2 c. chopped, fresh cilantro
  • 1 c. diced avocado
  • salt and pepper to taste

Brush chicken with 2 T. lime juice and let stand for 10 minutes. Season chicken with salt and pepper.
Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat with nonstick spray.
Cook chicken for 3-4 minutes per side or until browned and juices run clear.

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine black beans, red pepper, red onion, cilantro and avocado. Add 1-2 T. lime juice and salt to taste. Serve salsa over chicken.

Pineapple Walnut Cake with Cream Cheese Icing

Unbelievably, this cake has no butter or oil, yet is still moist and delicious! The frosting does have a bit of butter, but not too much. At only 5 points +, you can enjoy this cake guilt-free!

serves 24 ( 5 points +)

  • 2 c. flour
  • 1-1/2 c. sugar
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 ( 20 oz) can crushed pineapple, in juice
  • 1 c. chopped walnuts


  • 3 oz. reduced fat cream cheese
  • 3 T. butter, softened
  • 1-1/2 c. powdered sugar
  • 2-3 T. skim milk

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
For cake, combine first four ingredients in a mixing bowl. Add eggs, vanilla and pineapple with juice. Mix well. Stir in walnuts. Transfer to a 13 x 9 pan only very lightly coated with spray.
Bake 30-40 minutes or until done. Cool completely.

For frosting, beat the first four ingredients. Add milk as needed to achieve spreading consistency. Frost cake. 

Cover and store in refrigerator until serving.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Chili Spiced Chicken Soup with Avocado Relish

What an amazing soup for a cool, wintry day. It is the perfect combination of spiciness with cool toppings to balance it out. This recipe is sure to satisfy all soup lovers!

serves 8 ( about 1-1/4 c. soup with 1/4 c. relish = 7 points +)

Spice Blend:

  • 2-1/2 tsp. chili powder
  • 2 tsp. cumin
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. salt


  • 1 T. canola oil, divided
  • 1-1/4 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2 inch wide strips
  • 2 c. chopped onion
  • 1 c. chopped red bell pepper
  • 1 c. chopped green bell pepper
  • 1 c. chopped yellow bell pepper
  • 1 T. crushed garlic ( from a jar)
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 c. frozen corn, thawed
  • 1 ( 32 oz) carton fat-free chicken broth
  • 1 ( 28 oz) can diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 2 T. lime juice


  • 1/2 c. chopped, fresh cilantro
  • 1/3 c. chopped green onions
  • 3 oz. queso fresco, crumbled
  • 1 diced, peeled avocado

Combine spice ingredients in a small bowl.

To prepare soup, heat 2 tsp. oil in a large nonstick saucepan. Add chicken; sprinkle 1-1/2 T. spice mix over chicken. Saute 8 minutes or until done; Remove and cool Chop chicken into small pieces; set aside.

Heat remaining 1 tsp. oil in pan. Add onion, peppers, garlic and 1/2 tsp. salt. Sprinkle vegetable mixture  with remaining spice blend; saute 8 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Stir in chicken, corn, broth and tomatoes; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Add lime juice.

To prepare relish, combine all ingredients.

Ladle 1-1/4 c. soup into bowls; top with 1/4 c. relish.

adapted from "Cooking Light"

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Healthy Carrot Cake Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

A wonderful little treat perfect for dessert, breakfast or an afternoon snack. You won't believe they are only 3 points+

Makes 18 ( 3 points +)

  • 1 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 c. white whole wheat flour ( such as King Arthur)
  • 1 c. sugar
  • 2 T. flaxseed meal
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 2 c. shredded carrots
  • 1 c. unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp. vanilla


  • 1/3 c. light cream cheese
  • 1/3 c. powdered sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 and spray or line 18 muffin cups with paper liners.
In a large bowl, combine first 8 ingredients ( through salt)
In a medium bowl, combine carrots, applesauce, egg and vanilla. Add carrot mixture to flour mixture and stir until just blended.
Spon evenly into 18 muffin cups. Bake 18-20 minutes or until done. Cool completely.

Beat frosting ingredients together until smooth. Spoon onto cupcakes.

adapted from "Better Homes and Gardens Good and Fresh" magazine

Grilled Pork Chops with Grilled Pineapple Salsa

Moist, juicy and quick to prepare. You will love it!

serves 4 ( 5 points +)

  • 4 ( 4 oz.) boneless center-cut pork loin chops
  • 1 T. + 2 tsp. lime juice, divided
  • 4 pineapple slices ( canned in juice), chopped
  • 1/4 c. chopped red onion
  • 1 T. minced jalapeno
  • 2 T. chopped cilantro
  • salt and pepper to taste

Coat pork chops with 1 T. lime juice and let stand for 10 minutes. Sprinkle pork with salt and pepper. Spray a grill pan or George Foreman grill with nonstick spray. Grill chops for 4 minutes on each side ro until done.
Meanwhile, spray a nonstick skillet or grill pan with nonstick spray. Add chopped pineapple and onion. Cook until browned and onion is tender. Place pineapple mixture in a bowl. Add 2 tsp. lime juice, jalapeno, cilantro and salt to taste. Gently stir to combine. Serve salsa over pork.

adapted from "Cooking Light"

Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding

What are chia seeds? Well they are not for growing "Chia Pets". These seeds are a powerhouse of health. They are packed with Omega 3's, protein, fiber and a host of other great things. They have an amazing ability to swell and absorb 7 times their weight in water or liquid.

Per ounce, this super seed has about 130 calories, 4 grams of protein, 10 grams of fiber, nearly 200 milligrams of calcium, and 5,000 milligrams of omega 3 fatty acids. (A cooked 3-ounce portion of wild caught salmon has about 2,200 milligrams of omega 3 fatty acids.)
This recipe was fun to try. It would make a nice dessert or even breakfast. 
This recipe was adapted from a sight called "Deliciously Organic" to make it a little more points friendly.

serves 4 ( 4 points +)

  • 2 T. cocoa
  • 4 T. sugar-free maple syrup
  • 1-1/2 c. light coconut milk ( you can also use almond milk)
  • 1 T. vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp. almond extract ( optional)
  • 1/3 c. chia seeds
  • berries for garnish

Whisk together first 5 ingredients until smooth. Stir in Chia seeds. Spoon into 4 glasses. Refrigerate at least 2 hours or until gelled. Top with berries before serving


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