Making your own gluten-free flour blends takes time and patience to get the hang of. And we get that some folks just aren’t great in the baking department. Sometimes it’s OK to call upon premade gluten-free mixes to get the job done — and save you lots of grief! Numerous gluten-free chocolate chip mixes have been popping up on market shelves. We gave them a whirl, and here’s what we found. Read more
Nutrition News: White Pasta Alternatives, Dietary Guidelines and Sustainability and Social Media’s Nutritional Impactby Amy Reiter in Food News, October 9, 2015
Beyond White Pasta
White pasta can spike blood sugar and lead to an increased risk of weight gain, Type 2 diabetes and other health issues. So look no further if you’re searching for a few healthy alternatives to white pasta, because U.S. News Health & Wellness reporter K. Aleisha Fetters has some suggestions: Why not try whole-wheat pasta, quinoa pasta, buckwheat noodles, sprouted-grain pasta, spelt pasta or brown-rice pasta instead? “Luckily, the more heat white pasta receives from critics, the more food manufacturers work to up their alternative-pasta game with whole grains, heart-healthy fiber, filling protein, and more vitamins and minerals than you’ll find in a salad,” she wrote. That is lucky!
Sustainability Beyond the Scope?
Should the new version of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans factor in sustainability, considering not only Americans’ health and well-being but also that of our planet? A group of public health and sustainability experts argued last week in the journal Science that they should — echoing the recommendation made by a federal advisory committee of nutritionists in April. But lawmakers and administration officials apparently disagree. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell announced Tuesday that the updated dietary guidelines to be released in December will not consider environmental sustainability — which would have endorsed a diet with fewer animal-based foods. Some congressmen, who had argued that sustainability was outside the guidelines’ scope, cheered the decision on Wednesday.
Instagram for Breakfast
Parents may feel as if social media is consuming their teens’ lives, but it may also be affecting what those teens consume. A cross-sectional study of about 9,000 middle- and high-school students conducted by Canadian researchers and published in the British Journal of Nutrition concluded that the more time teens spent on social media sites — like Instagram, Vine, Snapchat, WhatsApp, Facebook and Twitter — the more likely they were to make poor nutritional choices, like not eating breakfast or drinking sugary beverages and energy drinks. Teens who used social networking sites for less than one hour a day had a 67 percent higher chance of drinking sugary beverages, while those who used them for just under two or five hours had a 90 percent and a 3.3-fold increase, respectively, in the odds of doing so, according to the researchers. Gulp.
Squashes are technically fruits, since they have seeds and are the fruit of the plant that bears them. They are primarily broken down into two types, the latter of which is now in prime season:
- Summer squashes, whose skins are still tender and edible, are typically harvested in the late spring and summer. They include zucchini (green), yellow, pattypan and cousa.
- Winter squashes, whose seeds and skins have fully matured and need to be cooked before they are eaten, are harvested in the late summer and fall. Examples include butternut, acorn, spaghetti squash and pumpkins.
These days, when you enter a hip restaurant, you can expect the menu to offer at least one trendy take on kale, Brussels sprouts or even cauliflower. But cabbage? Cabbage is still waiting for its moment in the sun. We encounter this leafy green, rich in vitamins K and C, most often as a co-star in sauerkraut, slaws and old-fashioned stews. We celebrate with cabbage just one day a year — on St. Patrick’s Day — and even then it’s overshadowed by fatty cuts of slow-cooked corned beef. But from a chef’s perspective, cabbage has a lot to offer: It usually clocks in at around $1.24 per pound, whereas kale or Brussels sprouts might cost you double at some marketplaces. It’s also highly abundant around this time of year, when produce supplies start to thin out.
If you’re daunted by the idea of baking with fresh pumpkin, well, we can’t really blame you. Splitting, gutting and skinning a whole pumpkin with nothing more than a carving knife and a large spoon to scoop out the seeds is a time-consuming process — and completely unnecessary when you have pure pumpkin puree on hand. Luckily, one-half cup of unsweetened canned pumpkin contains roughly 50 calories per serving, which means it’s a great way to add moisture and creaminess to your favorite baked goods for very little additional fat or sugar. Better yet, it’s a quick and convenient method for imbuing each bite of cookie, muffin or pie with comforting fall flavor. Here are five easy ways to work rich pumpkin puree into your favorite baked goods, from classic pumpkin pie to cheesy pumpkin biscuits.
Instead of relying on fat for flavor, Ellie Krieger’s better-for-you muffins get their distinctively warm spiciness from molasses, dark brown sugar and a total of four ground spices: cinnamon, ginger, cloves and nutmeg. Low-fat buttermilk, canned pumpkin and just a touch of canola oil instill a moist tenderness in each of these wholesome pumpkin-seed-flecked muffins.
Mmmm, chicken and dumplings. It’s a big bowl of comfort food: fluffy, soft dumplings that float atop a stick-to-the-ribs chicken stew bubbling underneath. Read more
A beet can do a whole lot more than just stain your hands red. It’s a versatile root vegetable whose greens can also be used in dishes, giving you more bang for your vegetable buck. Let’s explore what makes the beet unbeatable. Read more
Now that you’ve got the schedule down and have stocked up on lunchbox goodies, it’s time to get down and dirty in the kitchen. Finding healthy, tasty, kid-friendly meals isn’t always as easy as it seems. Here are six healthy cookbooks geared toward children and family meals. Read more
There’s another sticky-sweet option for your pancakes, and this one even has a little fiber. But are the reported health benefits and flavor of maguey (mah-gay) sweet sap enough to convert maple syrup lovers? Here are the facts and what we thought in Food Network Kitchen. Read more
According to a Natural Resources Defense Council report, 40 percent of the food produced in the U.S. never gets eaten. Further, Americans toss $165 billion worth of food each year. That’s about 20 pounds per person each month, enough to fill 730 football stadiums annually. Luckily, there are steps you can take at home to reduce the amount of food you waste. Read more