Thursday, December 31, 2009

Chicken Francais

I don't know why this is called Chicken Francais, I got the recipe out of a cooking light cookbook and that's what they called it so I'm going with it. Pounding the chicken thin was quite therapeutic and fun. I didn't pound them quite as thin as the recipe told me to but next time I think I might, I can see how it would be nice to have them thinner. 

 These were quite good, very mild but tasty. Paired with orange broccoli, it made for an excellent healthy meal. 

Chicken Francais

1/3 cup egg substitute (or 1 egg)
2 tbsp. grated parmesan cheese
2 tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
2 tbsp. white wine
1 tbsp. lemon juice
1/8 tsp. each salt and pepper
1/8 tsp. hot pepper sauce
2 cloves garlic, minced
6 (4 oz) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
3 tbsp. flour
cooking spray
1 1/2 tbsp. butter
3 tbsp white wine
2 tbsp. lemon juice

Combine first 8 ingredients in a bowl. Place each chicken breast halves between 2 sheets of plastic wrap (I used baggies) and pound to a 1/4 in. thickness using a meat mallet or rolling pin. (I didn't pound quite so thin but I can see where it would be nice if they were thinner). Dredge chicken in flour and dip in egg substitute mixture. Place each breast in pan heated with cooking spray. I dumped the rest of the egg mixture over the chicken after I was done. Remove chicken from pan and wipe out pan with paper towel. Melt butter in pan, add 3 tbsp. wine and 2 tbsp. lemon juice, bring to a boil, cook for 10 seconds. Serve over chicken.

Total calories = 900
6 servings = 150 calories per chicken breast

2 chicken breasts + 1/2 cup au gratin potatoes + 1/3 orange broccoli = 504 calorie dinner

Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Creamy Tomato Soup

This just warmed me from head to toe. I could drink this with a straw it was so good! I am the only one in the house who likes tomato soup so this will provide many lunches this week for me. I love that it comes together great in the slow cooker too. 

 The fact that it comes together quickly and cooks all day in the slow cooker totally rocks too. I almost forgot the half and half, the picture doesn't show it. I ate my first bowl before I realized it was missing. It was even delicious without the cream. By the way, the recipe called for 2 cups of heavy cream in this. I cannot rationalize adding 1650 calories to this healthy soup so I choose 1 cup of half and half. It is perfectly delicious this way and incredibly low calorie. So go ahead, drink it with a straw.

Creamy Tomato Soup

3 lbs. vine-ripened tomatoes
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cups tomato juice (I use V8)
1 cup cooking sherry
3 tbsp. sugar
1 chicken boullion cube
2T chopped fresh basil
1 cup half and half
Salt and pepper to taste

Wash all of your tomatoes and cut them into quarters. Put all of the tomatoes in the crock pot. Add chopped onion. Top with tomato sauce, sherry and boullion cube. Stir in sugar and chopped basil. Cover crockpot and cook on low for 6 - 8 hours. If you want a chunky soup, add half and half in now. Otherwise carefully use an immersion blender to puree or blender. Then stir in half and half. I like mine a little bit chunky. Yield 10 cups

Total calories = 930 calories
1 cup tomato soup = 93 calories

2 cups Creamy Tomato Soup + 1 egg salad sandwich = 465 calorie dinner

Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Cilantro Egg Salad Sandwich

I've noticed quite the controversy over cilantro. It doesn't seem that you simply like it or don't like it, it's that you love it beyond belief or despise it's very presence and think it's the most offensive food known to man. There are even websites devoted to the immense hate of cilantro. People sell t-shirts displaying how much they hate cilantro. I don't think I hate anything enough to wear a t-shirt about it.

Well, I happen to love cilantro. So adding a large amount to this egg salad was awesome for me. It really is good! I thought at first it was too much mustard but then deemed it fine. I can't wait until lunch so I can eat another sandwich!

Cilantro Egg Salad

5 hard cooked eggs, finely chopped
1/2 cup light mayonnaise
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 tbsp. honey dijon mustard
1 tsp. lemon juice
1 tsp. lime juice
1 stalk celery, finely diced
1/4 cup onion, finely diced
Salt and pepper to taste
5 - 100 calorie sandwich thins

In a medium bowl, stir everything together, season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve on 100 calorie sandwich thins. Yield - 5 - 1/2 cup servings

Total calories = 1395
1 sandwich = 279 calories

1 Cilantro Egg Salad Sandwich + 2 cups tomato soup = 465 calorie dinner

Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Fiesta Corn Chowder

It's cold outside, we just got 2 feet of snow over the weekend and I really needed something to warm me up! This hit the spot. I confess, I needed the broccoli only to cool my mouth down. The soup isn't too spicy but the buffalo wings burned a little. The soup is thick and chunky, just how I like it! It's loaded with veggies and creamy and very satisfying. This would be delicious with ham added to the soup for you meat eaters to make it a meal just by itself. It also came together very quickly, perfect for the last minute dinner.

Go ahead and use gluten free flour and make it a gluten free meal! 

Fiesta Corn Chowder

1 tbsp. butter or earth balance
1 medium onion, chopped
1/2 green pepper, chopped
1/2 red pepper, chopped
1 tbsp. flour
1 cup salsa
1 can (14.5 oz.) chicken broth or veggie broth
1 can corn, drained or 1 1/2 cups frozen corn
1 can creamed corn
1 small can green chiles
1/2 cup milk or almond mik
1/2 cup colby jack cheese (omit if vegetarian or vegan)

Melt butter in large pan on stove. Add onion, green and red pepper. Saute vegetables until onions are transparent, about 5 minutes. Stir in flour and cook for 1 minute. Add salsa, broth, corn, creamed corn, green chiles and milk. Bring to a boil over medium high heat. Reduce to low and simmer for 15 minutes. Stir in cheese the last 5 minutes.

Total calories = 1160
Yield = 6 1/2 cups
178 calories per cup

1 cup Fiesta Corn Chowder + 4 buffalo wings + broccoli = 408 calorie dinner

Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Dip

This snack was like dessert!! Only healthy and with vegetables! I did get some weird looks for eating sweet pumpkin dip with cauliflower and broccoli but oh man was it good.

This was a fantastic snack.

It reminded me of pumpkin cheesecake and who wouldn't love to eat pumpkin cheesecake for a snack! I got this recipe from a cooking light cookbook that I got from a friend. It called for 1/2 cup brown sugar but I subbed that for 1/4 cup brown sugar splenda blend and cut 25 calories per 2 tbsp off of it. Nice. The brown sugar splenda blend IS expensive but you only need 1/2 the amount compared to regular brown sugar.

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Dip

6 oz. 1/3 less fat cream cheese
1/4 cup brown sugar splenda
1/2 cup canned pumpkin
2 tsp. maple syrup
1/2 tsp. cinnamon

Place first 3 ingredients in a large bowl, beat with a mixer at medium speed until blended. Add syrup and cinnamon, beat until smooth. Cover and chill. Yield, 1 1/2 cups

Serving size 2 tbsp. = 55 calories per serving

Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Sweet Caramelized Onion Dip

I love dip. I've mentioned it before and I'll say it again. I love dip. I love dip. It's a dangerous thing to have around the house. This healthier version and eating it with veggies IS a better option though. I got this recipe from Hungry Girl, she has a lot of great recipes and tips. I copied the recipe and calorie count below how she had it, however, I used light vs. fat free in the sour cream, mayo and cream cheese so my calories would be higher than hers using the fat free. There are a LOT of onions in this and the flavor from them is fantastic so I'm sure using the fat free would taste just fine, I just happened to have the light versions around here. This really is SOOOOO good. Go make it. Now.

Update: I no longer use fat free items in this dip.  I use the real stuff now and just try to eat less.  Who am I kidding, it's awesome dip, way too hard to eat less! 

Sweet Caramelized Onion Dip

2 large sweet onions, chopped
1/2 cup fat-free sour cream
1/2 cup fat free mayonnaise
1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp. fat-free cream cheese, room temp
1 tbsp. butter
1 tsp. dijon mustard
1 tsp. balsamic vinegar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper

Heat butter in a large pan over medium heat on the stove. Once butter has coated the bottom of the pan, add onions, salt and cayenne pepper. Saute for 10 minutes, stirring often. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook for additional 25 - 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until onions are browned and caramelized. Add mustard and vinegar to the pan. Continue to cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and allow to cool. In large bowl, combine sour cream, mayo and cream cheese. Whisk until smooth. Add cooled onions to the mayo mixture and mix thoroughly. Refrigerate overnight to allow flavors to combine. Serve with your favorite veggies or chips.

Serving size 1/3 cup = 74 calories

Calories from Hungry Girl

Friday, December 25, 2009

Tropical Turkey or Chicken Salad

I couldn't stop eating this. It was SO GOOD. It is pretty to look at and just fun to eat. The textures and flavors are excellent and keep you going back for more! I made this with all mayo but I think I would split it with mayo and fat free vanilla yogurt next time to cut calories a bit more. I think the vanilla flavor yogurt would taste good with this too. I ate a cup of this which was nice and filling but I was snacking all night too on naughty things like candy coated pretzels and chex mix so my low calorie dinner wasn't quite so low calorie as it could have been.

I used leftover turkey for this salad but it is just as good with chicken. I froze several 10 oz. portions of turkey from a huge cheap turkey we got this year.  This is just as good with chicken as well.  

Tropical Turkey Salad

1 can (8 oz) pineapple chunks or tidbits, save 2 tbsp. juice
2 cups cubed cooked turkey or chicken, 10 oz.
1 medium apple, thinly sliced
1 cup red or green grapes, halved
1 celery rib, thinly sliced
4 green onions, thinly sliced
1/3 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
3/4 cup mayo, I used light
1 tbsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. molasses
1 tsp. curry powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 cup flaked coconut, toasted

Drain pineapple, reserving 2 tbsp. juice. In large bowl, combine pineapple, turkey, apple, grapes, celery, onion and walnuts. In small bowl, combine mayo, splenda, molasses, curry, salt, coconut and pineapple juice. Fold into turkey mixture, spoon onto lettuce leaves.

Total calories = 1500

10 - 1/2 cup servings = 150 calories per serving

1 cup Tropical Turkey Salad = 300 calorie dinner

Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Crustless Tex-Mex Meatloaf Cheddar Pie

This was better than I expected it to be. It has all the ingredients that I like so I knew it would be good, but it came together even tastier than I imagined. It's slightly zippy and cheesy and everything you'd want in comfort food. The original recipe called for more meat and more cheese, I added beans instead of 1/2 lb. meat and dropped a cup of cheese, this had PLENTY of cheese. The only thing I would do next time I make this would be to add a bit of cilantro on top at the end.

Crustless Tex-Mex Meatloaf Cheddar Pie

1 - 16 oz. jar fire roasted red peppers, drained and split
2 cups cheddar cheese
1 lb ground turkey
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup bread crumbs (I used garlic and herb seasoned)
2 eggs
1/3 cup flat leaf parsley
3/4 tsp each salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 375. Spray 10 in. pie plate with cooking spray and line with red peppers. Scatter 1/2 cup cheese on top of the peppers. In large bowl, mix 1/2 cup cheese, ground turkey, 3/4 cup salsa, beans, bread crumbs, eggs, parsley, salt and pepper until just combined. Press into the pepper and cheese lined pie plate. Spread the remaining salsa over the top. Bake for 40 minutes. Scatter remaining 1 cup cheese on top and bake for 15 minutes longer. Let cool 10 minutes before slicing.

Total calories = 2780
6 servings = 463 calories per serving

Tex-Mex Meatloaf Cheddar Pie = 463 calorie dinner

Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Turkey Cordon Bleu Crisp

I still have plenty of turkey leftovers to use up. I saw this recipe and knew it would be perfect. I got to use up some leftover ham too. Yea! This was good. I think I got the recipe off the Rachael Ray site or something, it said to serve with maple syrup but I didn't think it needed that at all. It was very tasty as it was, maybe a bit more salt and pepper though. I used colby jack cheese as it was what I had but I like the idea of the swiss cheese, I would use the swiss next time for sure.

Turkey Cordon Bleu Crisp

Cooking spray
1 onion, chopped
Salt and pepper
4 oz. sliced ham, chopped
About 7 oz. of bread, 8 slices of 55 calorie Wonder whole wheat
2 tbsp. butter
3 oz. Swiss cheese, cut into slivers
2 cups cooked turkey (10 oz)
1 cup egg beaters (or 3 eggs)
1 ¼ cup milk, 1 %
Maple syrup, for serving

Cook onion in cooking spray for about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, add ham and cook for about 2 minutes more. Quarter about ½ the bread and arrange in an 8 in. square baking dish. Layer the turkey, cheese and onion-ham mixture on top. Cut the remaining bread into ¾ in. cubes. Melt the 2 tbsp. butter in microwave, add the cubed bread and toss. Arrange evenly on top of the casserole. In the same bowl, mix eggs, milk and ¼ tsp. salt. Pour over casserole, then let stand for 20 minutes. Bake until set in the center, about 45 minutes, cover with foil the last 10 minutes to prevent the top from browning too much. Let stand for 10 minutes, serve with the syrup.

Total calories = 1786
4 huge servings = 447 per serving

Turkey Cordon Bleu Crisp + grapes + carrots = 497 calorie dinner

Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Chicken, Bacon and Cheese Wraps

This is a crazy combination of ingredients and it's definitely not one of the lighter meals that I prepare. The teriyaki sauce and ranch dressing are excellent together to create this scrumptious sauce for these chicken wraps. Bacon of course, goes with anything.

I got the idea for this recipe from A Year of Slow Cooking, she really has some amazing ideas and I love, love, love my slow cooker. I don't know what she did with the chicken but I put it on a tortilla. (I know, we put everything on tortillas). It makes a mighty tasty wrap.

Chicken, Bacon and Cheese Wraps

cooking spray
1 1/2 lbs. chicken, cut into bite size pieces
1/2 lb. cooked and crumbled bacon

1/4 cup teriyaki sauce
1/2 cup Ranch salad dressing, light
3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese or Colby jack

2 green onions
8 - 100 calorie whole wheat tortillas

Spray your crockpot with cooking spray. Put the chicken in the crock. In a small bowl, combine the teriyaki sauce and the ranch dressing. Pour sauce over the top of the chicken. Stir sauce around the chicken. Add the shredded cheese and the crumbled bacon to the crock, getting between the chicken pieces, if you can. Cover and cook on low for 5-7 hours, or on high for 3-4 or until chicken is done. Before serving, I squish the chicken so you get more sauce all over it and stir it around. Cut up the green onion at the end or on top of your wrap. It looks pretty and tastes good too!

Total calories = 2690

8 - slightly rounded 1/2 cup servings = 336 calories per wrap

1 chicken, bacon and cheese wrap + side salad + apple = 466 calorie dinner

Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Sweet Slow Cooker Baked Beans

Most people probably would consider baked beans a side dish rather than the main course. I LOVE baked beans so for me, this is the main thing tonight. They are SOOOO delicious and super filling. So a cup of beans, side salad and an apple, and I'm good to go. I was tempted to put some leftover ham in these but I kept them vegetarian this time. I vary the type of bean, my preference is below in the recipe but this time I think I subbed large butter beans for the garbanzo beans. It's great to just throw it in the crockpot and forget about it. I love how this makes a huge batch and we can eat them for lunch throughout the week.

Baked Beans

1 large onion
3 tbsp. garlic
1 can pinto beans
1 can great Northern beans
1 can red kidney beans
1 can garbanzo beans
1 can baked beans
1 8 oz. can crushed pineapple, partially drained
¾ cup ketchup
¼ cup bbq sauce
¼ cup molasses
2 tbsp. sugar
2 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 tbsp. mustard
½ tsp. pepper

Mix all in crock pot. Heat 5 - 6 hours on low.

About 3000 calories for the whole thing, 10 cups.
300 calories per cup
1 cup beans + side salad + apple = 450 calorie dinner
Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Ham, Egg and Cheese Breakfast Burritos

Once again, it's breakfast for dinner. This was a spur of the moment dinner idea. I would have loved to add something green to the burritos but this was all I had at the time. A handful of spinach would have been nice though. I ate plenty of veggies for lunch so I didn't mind going without for dinner tonight. This was packed with protein and super filling.

Ham, Egg and Cheese Breakfast Burritos

1 carton Egg Beaters or 8 eggs
1 1 /2 cups medium salsa
2 cups leftover ham (9 oz)
1 cup colby jack cheese
8 whole wheat 100 calorie tortillas

Scramble eggs in large skillet. When eggs are almost done, add ham, stir, cook for a few minutes. Add salsa and cheese and heat. Toast tortillas. Scoop 1/2 cup portion onto tortilla and enjoy.

Total calories = 2000
8 - 1/2 cup servings = 250 per burrito
2 Ham and Cheese Breakfast Burritos = 500 calorie dinner

Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Slow Cooker 13 Bean and Ham Soup

One of the first things I do with ham leftovers is think of soup. This bean and ham soup is my favorite! It is super simple and extremely delicious. Just how I like it. I love how the ham just falls off the bone after awhile and how most of the beans just mush up and the soup gets all thick. Perfect comfort food.

13 Bean and Ham Soup

1 leftover ham hock, with plenty of meat still attached
2 quarts of water
1 15 oz. can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 medium onion
1 tbsp. chili powder
2 tsp. garlic powder
2 1/2 cups 13 bean soup mix, I used Bob's Red Mill

Place all ingredients in crock pot over night on low. I don't presoak the beans or anything, they will be in the crockpot a long time. In the morning, stir soup, take out ham hock and shred meat. Put meat back in the crock. Continue cooking on low, stirring occasionally until ready to eat. Mine sat in the slow cooker for about 21 hours before I put it in the frig.

I don't have a calorie count for the soup as it varies how much ham actually goes into it. It is a highly nutritious meal to enjoy a big bowl of this soup with a side salad.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Ham & Pineapple with Tomato Peach Chutney

Let me just start by saying that ham is the only meal that my entire family will eat. The only meal. I always make separate things for the adults and children. It's quite annoying. My kids love ham. It's pretty much a staple in frig at all times. Now that it's ham season, they are on sale so I stock up in the freezer. Leftovers are not a problem.

I first had this chutney at my mother-in-laws. It fell in love with it right away and she gave me her recipe. It's like pie filling for ham. I did make a couple of changes, I added more onion and I replaced part of the sugar with splenda. I didn't want to replace all of it with splenda, I was afraid it would change the taste but there was an awful lot of sugar so I had to cut some of it. It tasted fine, in fact, I think next time I will replace a little bit more of the brown sugar with splenda. I also found out that peaches are not in season (duh!) so I used a can of peaches. I couldn't find fresh ones anywhere, or at least at the 2 grocery stores I checked. Found a fresh pineapple no problem, but no peaches. I used fresh tomatoes but I really think that canned tomatoes would be fine too. If you're making this in tomato/peach season, go ahead and use the real stuff but if you're like me and just wait until the hams go on sale, I think the canned is just fine.

Tomato Peach Chutney

1 3/4 cups chopped, seeded, peeled fresh tomatoes
1 1/2 cups (or 1 can, lite) chopped, peeled fresh peaches
3/4 cup chopped green pepper (I used red, it was all I had)
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar or splenda
1/2 cup white vinegar
1/2 cup golden raisins
3/4 cup chopped onion
3/4 tsp. curry powder
1/2 tsp. ground ginger

In a large saucepan, combine all ingredients. Cook over medium heat for 1 hour or until thickened, stirring frequently. Refrigerate to cool.

Total calories for chutney = 1100 (with splenda)
18 slightly rounded tablespoons = 61 calories per tbsp

1/2 cup corn = 66 calories
2 pineapple rings = 60 calories
6 oz. ham + 2 tbsp. chutney + 1/2 cup corn + 2 pineapple rings= 508 calorie dinner.
Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Mongolian Beef and Broccoli in the Slow Cooker

I found some inexpensive steak recently and have a big bag of broccoli that needs to be used. That only means one thing, mongolian beef. I've made several versions of beef and broccoli but this one from the crockpot lady is my favorite. It's a lot of ingredients but it's all things that I usually have on hand anyways and they come together to create an amazing meal.

Mongolian Beef and Broccoli

1 1/2 pounds steak, something cheap
3 cloves of garlic, minced
4 sliced green onions
1/2 onion, diced
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup white wine
1/4 cup cooking sherry
1/2 T white wine vinegar
1 t sesame oil
2 t molasses
1 t ginger
1/4 t black pepper
1 t red chili pepper flakes
1/2 T peanut butter
3 T sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch (to dredge meat)
1 lb. broccoli

Slice your meat in thin strips and toss in a Ziploc bag with cornstarch. Add all of the liquid and dried spices to your crock pot, add the peanut butter, and mix well. Add the garlic, the sliced green onions and regular onion. Put your meat on top, and toss to coat.

Cover and cook on low for 3-5 hours. The steak is thin and have very little fat, and will cook quickly. The meat is done when it is no longer pink and has reached desired tenderness. Mine was done in about 4 hours. Steam broccoli on stovetop for 6 - 8 minutes with 1/2 cup water until desired crispness. Serve mongolian beef over steamed broccoli.

Total calories = 1485 calories
3 servings = 495 calories
1 serving Mongolian Beef with Broccoli = 495 calorie dinner

Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Sweet and Spicy Chicken with Broccoli

This is a very simple meal that rivals any take out chinese you can get. While most chinese restaurants serve breaded, fried chicken coated with a sugary sauce, mine is just boneless skinless breasts coated with a sugary sauce. Ok, so the sauce is not exactly low calorie here but take out the grease and the rice and you completely make up for it. It's absolutely delicious and you can control how spicy you want it with the red pepper flakes. This recipe is slightly zippy but still mild enough to preserve your taste buds.

Sweet and Spicy Chicken with Broccoli

1 ½ lbs. raw boneless skinless lean chicken breast, cut into nuggets
1 cup sweet chili sauce
4 tsp. seasoned rice vinegar
1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper
Garlic powder
1 lb. broccoli

Brown chicken in cooking spray in skillet. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Combine chili sauce, vinegar, and red pepper flakes in a bowl and mix well. Add chicken to sauce and toss to coat. Serve with steamed broccoli.

Total calories with broccoli= 1730
4 servings = 433 per serving
2 mini baked egg rolls = 90 calories

Sweet and spicy chicken with broccoli + 2 mini eggrolls = 523 calorie dinner.

Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Caramel Cinnamon Apple Breakfast Casserole

I didn't have anything planned so it's breakfast for dinner again tonight. I originally got this recipe from $5 dinners. I replaced many ingredients for lower calorie ingredients and saved a ton of calories. Even with the substitutions, it's still a delicious meal whether you enjoy it for breakfast or dinner. Not the prettiest picture of a meal but it was awesome that it felt like I was eating dessert for dinner!

Caramel Apple Breakfast Casserole

1 carton of egg beaters
¾ cup of milk
1 ½ tsp. cinnamon
¼ tsp. nutmeg
4 medium or 3 large apples, peeled and diced
3 tbsp. butter

3 tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. molasses
1 ½ tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. vanilla
1/8 tsp. salt
10 slices of bread, torn (40 calorie bread)

In a bowl, whisk eggs, milk, cinnamon, salt and nutmeg

Peel and dice the apples, in a small bowl, combine butter, splenda, molasses, vanilla and cinnamon. Toss with diced apples.

In a greased 8 x 8 glass baking dish, tear 5 of the bread slices and add to the bottom. Then add a layer of diced caramel apples.

Tear the other 5 slices of bread and spread on top of the apples.

Pour egg/milk mixture into the baking dish. Cover with foil and let stand in the refrigerator for at least an hour – overnight. Preheat oven to 350.

Bake covered for 45 minutes, then uncover and bake another 15 – 20 minutes or until eggs have cooked through.
Total calories = 1205
3 servings = 402 calories
Caramel Apple Breakfast Casserole = 402 calorie dinner

Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Sweet Cinnamon French Toast

I have been making french toast for years with the basic egg/milk combo that was taught to me. Over the years I had flavored it up with cinnamon which made a good french toast. Then I was told by a friend about a recipe she used for french toast using vanilla ice cream instead of milk. My oh my was THAT good!! How could it not be! Bread with vanilla and sugar and then fried? What's not to love. Obviously I could not endure all those calories though. So here is my attempt at healthifying an awesome recipe. I've made these many times for the kids and they absolutely love them! They are flavorful and sweet so you really don't need much syrup at all on them. A little is nice though.

Tonight I used Wonder Soft 100% Whole Wheat bread. These are 55 calories a piece. I go back and forth from this to Sara Lee Delightful 40 calorie bread. How many french toast you yield will depend on the size of the bread.

We ate this tonight with fried turkey ham. I get the chunk at the grocery store and I have them thick slice it for me. It's fairly inexpensive, low calorie and a great quick meal.

Sweet Cinnamon French Toast

1 - 8 oz. carton egg substitute (like Egg Beaters)
1 cup milk
1/4 cup sugar
2 tsp vanilla
1 tsp molasses
1/8 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
15 pieces bread - I used Wonder Soft 100% Whole Wheat at 55 calories per piece
Lite syrup

Combine all ingredients except for the bread. Heat large skillet and spray with cooking spray. Dip bread one at a time in egg mixture coating both sides completely. Cook in skillet 3 - 5 minutes on each side until done to desired crispness. I kept the cover on for the first few minutes to make sure the insides of the bread weren't soggy. Serve with syrup. Serve with meat or eggs and fruit.

Total calories = 1215 calories without syrup
1 piece cinnamon french toast = 81 calories
1 tbsp. lite syrup = 25 calories
1 piece fried turkey ham = 75 calories
1 small orange = 45 calories

3 pieces cinnamon french toast + 3 tbsp. lite syrup + 2.5 oz. fried ham + 1 small orange = 438 calorie dinner
Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Bean & Cornbread Casserole for the Slow Cooker

This was a new recipe for me. I was skeptical about how cornbread would hold up in the crockpot but it did pretty well. I did omit the 3 tbsp. of oil that the recipe called for. I didn't feel like adding 360 calories to an already higher than usual meal.

While the cornbread was certainly good, it was slightly lacking in flavor so go ahead and add the oil if you want to live on the wild side. The chili part of it was full of flavor and quite good. I did like mushing up the cornbread in the chili, I don't often eat bread with a meal so this was an enjoyable treat.

Use the big crockpot for this one, it makes a lot of food. A lot. I scaled the recipe for 8 servings though I didn't actually portion it out. We'll be having delicious lunches with this for several days.

UPDATE: This is even better the next day. Part of the cornbread mixed in with the sauce to make it nice and thick. It's not a pretty meal but absolutely delicious! I'm trying to think of what I can add to the cornbread to make it more flavorful though. Onion? Green chiles?

Bean & Cornbread Casserole

2 cans kidney beans
2 cans pinto beans
1 large onion
1 green or red pepper
4 cloves of garlic
1 can diced tomatoes (14.5 oz), drained
1 can Rotel tomatoes with green chilies, undrained
1 can tomato sauce ( 15 oz.)
2 tsp tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp dry mustard
1/8 tsp hot sauce
1 1/2 cup flour
3 tsp baking powder
1 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 3/4 cup milk
3/4 cup egg substitute (egg beaters) or 3 eggs
1 can cream style corn (15 oz)
1 1/2 cup cornmeal

Lightly spray crock pot with cooking spray. Cook onion, pepper and garlic until tender. Transfer to crockpot. Stir in all beans, tomatoes and juice, seasonings, mustard and hot sauce, stir. Cover and cook on high for about 1 1/2 hours.

In large bowl, combine cornmeal, flour, baking powder, sugar and salt. Stir in milk and egg and creamed corn. Spoon evenly over bean mixture. Cover and cook on high for 2 hours until done.

Total calories = 4050
8 servings = 506 calories

1 serving bean and cornbread casserole = 506 calorie dinner

Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Turkey Primavera

Pasta and white sauce are just a dangerous combination for me. I just can't stop eating it. I ate so much of this meal tonight, I couldn't stop. It is so good I just kept eating spoonful after spoonful just so the experience wouldn't end. *sigh* The awesome thing, is I didn't have to ingest thousands of calories for this awesome experience either. It's packed with vegetables and incredibly delicious. You won't be disappointed. This recipe makes a ton of food. We ate A LOT and there are still tons of leftovers.

I think that primavera means spring. It's anything but spring here. It's snowing and it's going to continue snowing all night. Maybe that's why I ate so much, I want spring.

Turkey Primavera

1/2 box Rotini or Penne pasta, Barilla Plus (7 oz)
10 oz. leftover turkey, diced
Cooking spray
Salt and pepper
1 medium zucchini squash, cut into circles
1 medium yellow squash, cut into circles
1 onion, chopped
1 red pepper, chopped
1 head broccoli, cut into florets (1/2 lb)
2 carrot sticks, peeled and chopped
3 small tomatoes, seeded and diced (plum tomatoes)
2 garlic cloves, crushed

For White Sauce:

2 Tbsp butter
3 Tbsp flour
2 cups milk, 1 %
4 Tbsp grated parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper and garlic powder


1 . In medium saucepan, cook pasta according to package instructions. Drain and add to large serving bowl.
2. In large skillet, saute diced chicken in olive oil and salt and pepper for 6-8 minutes, stirring often. Once chicken has cooked through, transfer to plate.
3. Chop all veggies. Add chopped veggies to same skillet that cooked the chicken in.
4. Add all the veggies (except the tomatoes) to the same skillet that you sauteed the chicken and steam/saute for 3-4 minutes with 1/4 cup of water. Add the tomatoes during the last minute. Transfer to plate.
5. Make white sauce in the small sauce pan. Add all the ingredients and stir continually until thickened. Do not boil.
6. Toss pasta, cooked chicken, sauteed veggies with parmesan sauce. Season with salt, pepper and garlic powder to taste.

Total calories = 2050
5 servings = 410 calories

1 serving of turkey primavera = 410 calorie dinner

Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Spinach and Lentil Meatloaf & Sweet and Sour Cole Slaw

I made the spinach lentil meatloaf a couple of weeks ago and made a double batch so we enjoyed the second one this evening. It makes dinner so much easier to double up on recipes and freeze half. Most the time, it's just as easy to make 2 rather than just to make 1. So with the extra coleslaw mix on hand this week, the sweet and sour coleslaw seemed the perfect fit with the meatloaf. It's sweet, delicious and super low calorie. I ate a LOT of food tonight so I'm very full and satisfied and still managed to stay with in calorie budget. Yea!

Sweet and Sour Cole Slaw

1 cup onion, chopped
3 cups chopped or shredded cabbage
2 cups apples, chopped with peelings (about 2 medium apples)
1/4 cup water
2 tbsp. splenda
1 tsp. molasses
2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
1/2 tsp. dijon mustard
1/4 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. pepper

Saute onion in cooking spray for about a minute, add cabbage and apples and saute for about 3 minutes. Mix remaining ingredients in small bowl and add to cabbage mixture. Cover and cook over low heat for about 25 minutes.

Total calories = 350 calories
3 servings = 117 calories

1/3 of meatloaf = 350 calories, 2 tbsp. ketchup = 30 calories
1 serving meatloaf w/ ketchup + 1 serving sweet and sour coleslaw = 497 calorie dinner

Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Shredded BBQ Chicken Wraps with Creamy Cole Slaw

I'm liking the crock pot this week. It makes dinner sooooooo much easier. This is another throw it in and go recipe. The coleslaw whips up in just a couple of minutes when your ready to eat. You can use mayo or miracle whip. I originally saw this recipe over on Picky Palate and I've made it many times. It's basically the same, I've just tweaked the measurements a bit.

You may have noticed that I don't always have side dishes when we eat wraps. I like to use plenty of veggies in my wraps usually so I don't always feel the need for a side dish. We'll often cut up an apple for on the side or maybe a small salad. This has the salad on top, so no need for anything else for me.

Slow Cooker Shredded BBQ Chicken Wraps w/ Creamy Cole Slaw
1 ½ lbs. chicken
1 cup ketchup
2 tbsp. Dijon mustard
3 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp. lemon juice
¼ cup + 2 tbsp. splenda
2 tsp. molasses
3/4 tsp. pepper
½ tsp. salt
2 tsp. honey

8 oz. bag of coleslaw
1/4 cup light miracle whip
1 tbsp. splenda
1 tsp.. Dijon mustard
1 tsp. honey
8 - 100 calorie whole wheat tortillas or 100 calorie sandwich thins

Place chicken in crockpot. Combine the rest of the sauce ingredients in a bowl and pour on the chicken. Cook for 6-8 hours on low or 4-5 hours on low. Shred chicken and stir into sauce. For the coleslaw, place cabbage into a large bowl, place miracle whip, splenda, mustard and honey in small bowl and mix. Add sauce to cabbage and mix until combined. Spoon scant ½ cup BBQ chicken onto tortillas, top with scant 1/2 cup of coleslaw.

Total calories = 2180 calories
1 serving = 273 calories
2 BBQ chicken wraps with coleslaw = 546 calorie dinner

Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Italian Slow Cooker Chicken

Sometimes you need a totally no fuss meal. Today I needed something simple and this was perfect. Simple, tasty and filling. It hit the spot.

I buy shredded cabbage at Costco in a huge bag so I am always looking for ways to use it up before it goes bad. The main thing I use the cabbage for is my BBQ chicken wraps with cole slaw. Yum. But then I am faced with the problem of the other 2/3 of the bag. It's so much cheaper for the huge bag that I continue to buy it and to challenge myself to use it before it goes bad. I like the cabbage and onion in this sauce, it makes it thicker and gives it an interesting crunch. Plus boosting the vegetables in recipes always makes me happy.

Italian Slow Cooker Chicken

12 oz. shredded cabbage or 1/2 head, cut into wedges
1 large onion, sliced into rings
3 cloves garlic
1 1/2 lbs. chicken breasts or chicken tenders
1 tsp. dried italian seasoning
2 cups spaghetti sauce
2 tbsp. cornstarch
2 tbsp. cold water
1 lb. broccoli

Place cabbage, onion and garlic in slow cooker. Add chicken. Sprinkle with italian seasoning. Pour spaghetti sauce all in cooker. Cover and cook on low heat for 4-5 hours. Combine cornstarch and water, stir into sauce in cooker, cover and cook for about 15 minutes more until thickened. Steam broccoli in pan with 1/2 cup water for about 6 - 8 minutes or until tender. Spoon sauce over chicken. Serve with broccoli.

Total calories = 1455
3 servings = 485 calories
1 serving italian chicken with broccoli = 485 calorie dinner

Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Ham, Broccoli & Tomato Egg Bake Casserole

I love breakfast. I love breakfast for dinner. We eat it often here. This egg bake isn't one of the egg soaked bread casseroles that I see a lot of. This is a delicious egg dish packed with bright tasty vegetables and ham packed in there. 1/2 of the pan is one serving which is huge. I usually put a bit of cheese on top but I forgot this time and I didn't miss it. Actually, I thought it was prettier without the cheese on top.

Egg Bake

1 1/3 cups hash brown potatoes (6 oz.)
2 cups broccoli (4.4 oz)
4 oz. chopped ham
1/2 onion, chopped
½ red or green pepper
1 can Rotel tomatoes, drained thoroughly, press in strainer with paper towel
¼ cup 1% milk
2 tbsp. flour
1 carton egg beaters plus ½ cup
1 tsp dried basil
¼ tsp. black pepper
2 tbsp. cheese

Put hashbrowns on bottom of an 8 x 8 glass baking pan. Add broccoli, onion, pepper on top of hashbrowns. Sprinkle ham and tomatoes evenly over the vegetables. Mix milk and flour, add eggs and spices. Add egg mixture to veggies. Sprinkle cheese on top. Cook at 400 for 45 – 50 minutes until egg is set. If you don't push a lot of the moisture out of the tomatoes, you'll get a lot of liquid from them.

Total calories = 840 calories
2 huge servings = 420 calories
1 serving egg bake = 420 calorie dinner

Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Turkey or Chicken Quesadilla

I told you you'd see a lot of tortillas here! There is nothing like a messy, goopy, super tasty quesadilla for dinner. I love smothering it with sour cream and still knowing I am getting a healthy, low calorie meal that will keep me full. Your eyes are going to want cheese on this but you don't need the cheese. Say it with me, "I don't need the cheese". I've seen recipes that put 1/2 cup cheese on one quesadilla. Not worth the calories people. I'd much rather put a whole lot of sour cream on it for less than 1/2 the calories. I used turkey in my quesadilla, you can also easily use chicken with this, I just happen to have a lot of turkey in the freezer.
Turkey Quesadilla

2 cups cooked turkey
1 cup chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups julienned zucchini
1 cup salsa
1 cup frozen corn
1 cup red pepper, chopped
1 can (4 ounces) chopped green chilies
2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
10 whole wheat 100 calorie tortillas

In a large nonstick skillet, cook the turkey, onion and garlic over medium heat for about 3 -4 minutes. Add zucchini, salsa, corn, red pepper and chilies. Reduce heat; cover and simmer until vegetables are tender. Stir in seasonings.
For each quesadilla, place one tortilla in an ungreased nonstick skillet. Toast until desired crispness. Remove to plate. Toast another tortilla on both sides. Top with 1 cup filling. Cover with the other tortilla. Cook for another minute or so until hot. Cut into wedges. Another option is to cook one tortilla, place ½ cup filling on it and fold in ½. This makes it actually easier to handle. Top with light sour cream or salsa.

Total calories = 1858

5 servings = 372 calories

1 quesadilla + 1/4 cup light sour cream = 452 calorie dinner

Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Turkey, Orange Squash and Green Beans with Onions & Peppers

This was a fantastic meal. I totally didn't miss the potatoes or stuffing. I did add about a tablespoon of gravy to the turkey after I took the picture for a little more moisture. I'm just loving squash this year! This has just a hint of the orange flavor, it's not overpowerful, in fact, I might just add a bit more orange next time. I put a bit too much seasoning on the beans but I scaled it down in the recipe below. They were still delicious, the flavors were a perfect complement with the turkey.

I don't
make turkey too often but I couldn't resist the fantastic deals they have on turkey this time of year. This was a 19 lb. turkey for about $7. Nice. I'm going to get about 10 meals out of this guy. After this meal, peeled off most of the meat and cut it into 2 cup portions and froze them for future meals. Then I threw the bones, a couple of tablespoons of balsamic vinegar, and an onion into the crock pot and made a delicious turkey broth for soup the next day.

Orange Squash
1 medium squash, 1 1/2 lbs.
2/3 cup water
3 tbsp. orange juice concentrate
1/2 tsp. ginger
Peel, seed and quarter squash. Cut into 1/2 in. pieces. In large saucepan, add squash, water, orange juice and ginger. Simmer about 20 minutes until squash is tender, stirring often to combine flavors.
Total calories = 350
3 servings = 117

Green Beans with Onions & Peppers

1 bag (12 oz) frozen whole green beans, steamfresh
1 tbsp. lemon juice
2 tsp. honey dijon mustard
1/2 tsp. dried basil + 1/4 tsp. dried thyme
1/4 onion, sliced
1 medium red pepper and yellow pepper, cut into strips
1/4 tsp. each salt & pepper

Cook green beans in microwave as directed on package. In small bowl, mix lemon juice, mustard, basil and thyme. Set aside. Add cooking spray to skillet, add bell peppers and onion, cook 6 – 8 minutes, until tender. Add green beans, lemon mixture to peppers, toss to coat. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook 2 – 3 minutes.

Total calories for green beans= 240 calories
3 servings = 80 calories6 oz. turkey breast + orange squash + green beans = 437 calorie dinner
Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Slow Cooker Orange Chicken with Broccoli

This is a fantastic crock pot recipe from The Crockpot Lady. She flours her chicken and frys it before adding it to the crock pot. I just dredge the chicken with a bit of cornstarch and plop it in the slow cooker, it seems to work just fine. I've done it both ways and the chicken seems dryer with precooking it and the sauce doesn't seem to stick any better so I vote for the easier way. We eat this with broccoli but any rice fans are welcome to add it to their meal, just adjust the calories accordingly.
I often cook with splenda rather than sugar. It is more expensive than sugar but I buy it at Costco or Sam's Club so it's pretty reasonable. I haven't noticed any taste difference in the meals when splenda is used. For brown sugar, I replace it with splenda plus a teaspoon or 2 of molasses. Works great. Saves a ton of calories. That makes me very happy.

Slow Cooker Orange Chicken with Broccoli

1 1/2 pounds boneless chicken, cut in 1 1/2-inch chunks

¼ cup cornstarch
cooking spray
1/2 tsp salt
6 ounces (1/2 can) frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed, no pulp
1/2 cup splenda
2 tsp. molasses
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons ketchup
1 lb. broccoli
Cut chicken into strips or chunks, shake in bag with cornstarch. Spray cooking spray in slow cooker and place chicken pieces inside. In a small mixing bowl, combine the orange juice concentrate, splenda, molasses, balsamic vinegar, salt, and ketchup. Pour sauce mixture evenly over the chicken, and toss gingerly to coat. Cover and cook on low for 6 hours or on high for 3 to 4. Steam broccoli on stove top with 1/3 cup water for about 6 - 8 minutes. Serve chicken over broccoli.
Total calories = 1487
3 servings = 496 calories
1 serving Orange Chicken with Broccoli = 496 calorie dinner

Calories calculated from, some numbers are rounded and approximate.