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Stir fry dishes are a wonderful way to incorporate plenty of healthy veggies into your diet.  An extra bonus is they are easy to make and can be prepared quickly, which makes them ideal for a weeknight supper.  They typically use one pan, so you’ve got minimal cleanup as well!  I’ve collected a few of my favorite stir fry recipes to share with you this week.

 

Brown Rice Stir Fry with Vegetables makes for a perfect meatless meal (ideal during the Lenten season!).  You’ll want to start by cooking some brown rice according to the package directions and set aside.  Next, put water into a wok or frying pan, bring to a boil, and add your veggies (chopped red cabbage, chopped broccoli, chopped bell pepper, and chopped zucchini).  Make sure the water covers the vegetables.  Cook for 2 minutes, drain the veggies, and set aside.  Heat olive oil in the wok and add chopped garlic, cayenne powder, and chopped parsley.  Cook for 1 minute, stirring.  Add in the veggies, rice, and soy sauce.  Cook a few minutes more and serve with sesame seeds for a garnish.

 

Brown-rice-stir-fry-with-vegetables
Simple Vegan Blog

 

Shrimp and Asparagus Stir Fry with Lemon Sauce is a simple, yet elegant dish that’s perfect to serve to dinner guests.  Start by whisking together chicken stock, cornstarch, sugar, soy sauce, lemon juice, and lemon zest.  Set aside.  In a frying pan, heat olive oil over medium heat and add shrimp in a single layer.  Cook for about 3 minutes and turn to cook both sides.  Shrimp should be pink, but slightly underdone.  Remove the shrimp from the pan and set aside.  In the same pan add more olive oil and then add chopped asparagus.  Cook until the asparagus is crisp-tender.  Season with salt and add minced, fresh ginger and chopped garlic.  Cook another minute and pour in your lemon sauce.  Return shrimp to the pan and let simmer for another few minutes until the sauce is thickened.

 

Shrimp-and-Asparagus-Stir-Fry-with-Lemon-Sauce-Recipe-3
Home Cooking Memories

 

Another quick and easy meal is Honey Garlic Chicken Stir Fry.  Begin by heating olive oil in a pan and adding broccoli flowerets and sliced carrots.  Cook until the veggies are crisp-tender and set them aside.  Add more oil to the pan and add pieces of chicken breast.  Cook until golden brown and cooked through.  Add in minced garlic and cook for 30 seconds.  Return veggies to the pan and cook until warmed through.  In a bowl combine chicken broth, honey, and soy sauce.  Add to the chicken/veggie mixture and cook for 30 seconds.  In a second bowl combine cornstarch and a tablespoon of cold water.  Add that to the chicken/veggie mixture.  Cook until it begins to thicken.  Serve immediately.

 

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Courtesy of Dinner at the Zoo

 

I’ll be back next week with some ways to use radicchio.

 

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February is Snack Food Month, but before you reach for the chips, pretzels, or cookies, think about how snacks can either help or hinder your diet.  Snacking can actually be good for you.  It can help to keep your hunger at bay so you don’t overeat at meals and keep your energy levels up between meals.  However, it’s important what foods you choose for your snacks.  Look for foods that have whole grain, fiber, and protein.  These give your snack “staying power” so you won’t be hungry again in a short while.  Also, pack in nutrition.  You want to feed your body the vitamins and minerals it needs for energy. Also, stay away from foods that are high in sugar and fat.  The end result will be an excess of calories, which usually means added pounds.  I’ve selected a few snack recipes you can try that are both healthy and delicious.  Use them in place of something you know might not be the best option.

 

Baked Broccoli Tots can be made with either uncooked fresh or frozen broccoli.  Blanch the broccoli in boiling water for a minute and then chop it finely.  Mix it with one egg, diced onion, shredded cheddar cheese, breadcrumbs, parsley, salt, and pepper.  Scoop 1 and 1/2 tablespoons of the mix and shape into a “tot” and place onto a greased baking sheet.  Bake tots at 400 degrees for 18-24 minutes, turning halfway through.  You can serve them with your favorite dipping sauce.

 

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Courtesy of Gimme Delicious

 

When your sweet tooth strikes you’ve got to try this recipe for Fruit Pizza Crackers.  The base calls for using Wasa crispbreads, but any low fat or fat free, whole grain cracker will work.  Top it with a spread made from low fat cream cheese mixed with honey.  Then placed diced fruit of your choice (strawberries, kiwi, blueberries, banana, raspberries, etc.).  It’s that simple!

 

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Courtesy of Homemade Ginger

 

Two ingredients are all you’ll need for Parmesan Zucchini Crisps.  Simply slice two medium zucchinis into 1/8 inch rounds and arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet that has been coated with non stick cooking spray.  Season with a bit of salt and pepper.  Place a teaspoon of freshly grated Parmesan cheese on each slice and bake at 400 degrees for 20-22 minutes until golden brown.

 

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Courtesy of Yellow Bliss Road

 

Check back next week when I’ll be sharing some delicious stir fry recipes.

 

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Winter is the season when a variety of citrus fruit are plentiful.  These include clementines, grapefruit, Mandarin oranges, oranges, and tangerines. Citrus fruit are best known for being an excellent source of vitamin C, which can help boost the immune system. While all these fruit are delicious eaten on their own, I’ve selected some ways to incorporate them into your meals in ways you might not have considered.

 

Citrus Avocado Chicken uses limes, grapefruit, and oranges in both the salsa and marinade you’ll make for this recipe.  Begin by creating a marinade by combining citrus zest and juice with honey, olive oil, minced garlic, minced Serrano chile, chopped basil, chopped cilantro, and cumin.  Place skinless, boneless chicken breasts in a zip lock bag with the marinade and refrigerate 4-8 hours, turning occasionally.  You’ll create a salsa with sectioned and chopped limes, grapefruit, and oranges, chopped Serrano chile, minced green onion, chopped basil, chopped cilantro, chopped Anaheim chile pepper, and honey.  Refrigerate until one hour before serving, when you’ll add chopped avocado and let sit out at room temperature while you grill your chicken.  Finish by topping chicken with salsa and enjoy.

 

Citrus-Avocado-Chicken-2
Courtesy of Favorite Family Recipes

 

A combinations of colors and textures is how I’d describe Quinoa Citrus Mango Avocado Black Bean Salad.  Simply combine cooked quinoa, cooked black beans, cubed, fresh mango, cubed, fresh avocado, segmented grapefruit, segmented orange, lemon juice, chopped scallions, olive oil, honey, and sea salt.  This makes a delicious lunch entrée or side dish.

 

Quinoa-Citrus-Mango-Avocado-Black-Bean-Salad-topview
Courtesy of Jeanette’s Healthy Living

 

Citrus fruit is ideal for breakfast and you’ll especially love this Yogurt Orange Smoothie with Vanilla and Cinnamon.  Add two peeled navel oranges, one cup plain yogurt, cinnamon, and vanilla to a blender and combine until smooth.  Serve cold.

 

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Courtesy of Rhubarbarians

 

I’m back next week with some delicious and healthy snack ideas.

 

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Cold winter days call for a satisfying and hot meal to chase away the chill.  Stews are the perfect meal selection–I like to think of them as soup on steroids.  They are packed with vegetables and many times a protein like chicken or beef and they have less broth than soup, making them more filling.  I’ve gathered a few recipes for you to try that provide a broad range of the wide variety of stews you can prepare.

 

French Chicken Stew is simple and quick to make.  You’ll use chicken thighs with the skin on and begin by browning the chicken on both sides in some olive oil in a Dutch oven.  Next, add some cooking sherry and let simmer for a minute before adding minced garlic.  Next, you’ll arrange chopped onions, leeks, carrots, and celery around the chicken (these veggies will be in larger chunks).  Sprinkle Herbes de Provence over the top and add salt and pepper.  Add two cups of chicken broth, cover, and let cook on medium high heat for 50 minutes.  Stir every so often to ensure the bottom doesn’t burn.  Serve the stew with a spoonful of Dijon mustard to mix into the broth.

 

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Courtesy of The Harvest Kitchen

 

Vegan Irish Stew is a rich, hearty meal, that uses lots of root veggies and I promise you will not miss the lamb that is made in the traditional version of this dish.  In a large pot, heat olive oil and saute chopped celery, onion, and garlic.  Sprinkle in flour to coat veggies and then add in two cups of vegetable broth.  Add in one can of vegan stout beer, cut carrots, cut parsnips, quartered mushrooms, halved baby potatoes, tomato paste, and spices such as thyme, bay leaf, brown sugar, salt, and pepper.  Bring to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes or until the veggies are fork tender.

 

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Courtesy of It Doesn’t Taste Like Chicken

 

Sausage, White Bean, and Kale Stew is a delicious dinner option.  Saute fully cooked sliced sausage (I use turkey sausage) in olive oil in a Dutch oven until browned.  Remove sausage to a plate to keep warm.  Add chopped onions, carrots, celery, and mushrooms to the pot and cook until they have slightly softened.  Add chopped kale and cook for a minute until the greens wilt.  Add a can of crushed tomatoes, two cans of chicken broth, two cans of white beans, thyme, marjoram, salt, and pepper.  Return the sausage back to the pot and stir all ingredients to combine.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, cover, and let simmer for 30 minutes.

 

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Courtesy of Valerie’s Kitchen

 

I’m back next Monday with a look at the different citrus fruit that are in season right now.

 

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Kale and collard greens are two leafy veggies that are plentiful during the winter months.  Great news since they are packed with nutrition.  Both are excellent sources of vitamins A and C, as well as good sources of calcium.  In addition, they are both naturally cholesterol free and low in sodium.  Collards have an added boost of fiber, while kale provides a good source of potassium. Get More Info On Nutrients in Veggies

 

Along with being a healthy addition to your diet, these greens are also versatile in ways to prepare them.  Sauteed, in a stir fry, used in a salad, or shredded into a soup, they are equally delicious.  I’ve selected a few recipes that highlight their flavor in ways you might not have thought to explore.

 

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Courtesy of Fruits & Veggies–More Matters

 

Southern comfort food is made easy with this recipe for Vegetarian Crock Pot Black Eyed Peas and Collard Greens Soup.  You’ll combine vegetable broth, chopped collard greens, diced onions, diced celery, diced green pepper, minced garlic, dried black eyed peas, a can of diced tomatoes, dried thyme, dried oregano, smoked paprika, bay leaves, cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper.  Place all ingredients except the chopped collards into your slow cooker. stir well, and cook on low for 8 hours.  Add collard greens, turn cooker to high, and cook another 2 hours.  Enjoy!

 

Vegetarian-Crock-Pot-Black-Eyed-Peas-and-Collard-Greens-Soup-recipe
Courtesy of Running in a Skirt

 

Lemon Kale Chickpea Avocado Salad is a delicious side salad or healthy lunch.  All you need is chopped kale, a can of chickpeas (garbanzo beans), an avocado, lemon juice, one clove pressed garlic, olive oil, salt, and pepper.  Combine the lemon juice, salt, pepper, garlic, and olive oil to make your dressing.  Gently massage into your kale until the surface is coated and the kale has softened.  Add in the chickpeas and avocado and serve.

 

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Courtesy of The Kitchen Girl

 

One of the simplest, yet most delicious kale recipes, is Garlic Parmesan Kale Pasta.  A bonus is that this meal can be thrown together in about 25 minutes, making it perfect for a busy weeknight supper.  You’ll need whole wheat pasta, chopped, fresh kale, olive oil, butter, minced garlic, grated Parmesan, salt, pepper, and crushed red pepper flakes.  Cook your pasta according to directions and in the meantime, saute the minced garlic in the olive oil and butter.  Slowly add kale until it has wilted and turned a deep green color.  Drain pasta and add it to the kale and garlic.  Season with salt and pepper and top with the grated Parmesan and crushed red pepper.

 

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Courtesy of Budget Bytes

 

I’m back next week with some hearty stew recipes to help keep you warm this winter.

 

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Who doesn’t love fresh fruits and veggies? In-season produce may sometimes be more flavorful and certainly the price is usually just right, but there are times you may need a fruit or veggie that isn’t in season.  So, is it okay to go the frozen produce route?

 

The short answer is yes!  Frozen fruit and vegetables are a convenient and nutritious alternative to fresh. When it comes to good nutrition, all forms of fruits and vegetables matter—fresh, frozen, canned, dried and 100% juice. With 200+ options and a variety of convenient packaging to make fruits and vegetables easy to store and easy to serve, there’s bound to be something to please everyone! All forms of fruits and vegetables count toward your daily recommendation.  Read More

 

Most fresh produce that is bought in the supermarket is picked prior to it being fully ripe and then transportation and storage (depending on the type of produce) can take anywhere from 3 days to 12 months, where vitamins begin to decline.  Fresh produce is best eaten immediately after harvest.  Frozen produce is picked at peak ripeness and then washed, blanched, and frozen within hours of harvest.  However, the blanching process can result in a loss of some nutrients like vitamins B and C. 

 

I’ve pulled together a few recipes featuring frozen produce.  Start your morning with this Blueberry Breakfast Casserole.  You’ll use your slow cooker, so you can throw everything together the night before and have it ready when you wake up.  You’ll need cubed French bread, frozen blueberries, cream cheese, sour cream, brown sugar, milk, maple syrup, eggs, vanilla, and cinnamon.  You’ll cook on low setting for 4-5 hours and enjoy.

 

Crock-Pot-Blueberry-Breakfast-Casserole-2
Courtesy of Crock Pot Ladies

 

Oven Roasted Broccoli is a delicious side dish.  It’s also quick and easy when you’re using frozen broccoli flowerets.  Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  Spread the frozen broccoli on the sheet and sprinkle on olive oil and a seasoning of your choice (this recipes opts for Montreal steak seasoning).  Roast for 20 minutes, take out of the oven, stir, and return to roasting for another 10-15 minutes.

 

 

Oven-Roasted-Frozen-Broccoli-above
Courtesy of Budget Bytes

 

This recipe for Vegetable Soup combines both fresh and frozen ingredients.  Onion, carrots, celery, potatoes, frozen green beans, frozen corn, and frozen peas are combined with vegetable stock, canned tomatoes and herbs to create this healthy soup.

 

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Courtesy of Cooking Classy

 

Stay warm and I’ll be back next Monday with some delicious recipes for kale and collard greens.

 

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