All Posts By Leah Brickley

Leah Brickley is a Recipe Developer and Nutritionist in Food Network Kitchen. “My day typically bookends with researching, cooking, tasting, enjoying, evaluating and talking about food.”

Father’s Day Beer-and-Butter Shrimp Foil Pack

by in Healthy Recipes, June 19, 2015

Yes, beer and butter can be healthy! And a little goes a long way in this simple low calorie shrimp dish, which is perfect for Dad’s special day. All of the ingredients are sealed up in a foil packet so the flavor can’t sneak out. It cooks up in just minutes, so there’s more time to spend with Dad! Read more

Meet the Dragon Fruit (and Make Dragon Fruit Recipes!)

by in Healthy Recipes, June 15, 2015

Aptly named, this native South American fruit (also called the pitaya) looks like a mythical fire-breathing artichoke with its pink-to-reddish, or sometimes yellow, scale-like leaves. Dragon fruit is actually the flower from a plant that grows in tropical regions, which blooms at night just once! Cut it open and you’ll find the fairy tale continues: The inside of the fruit resembles and tastes like a cross between a pear and a kiwi. It’s slightly sweet, creamy and refreshing. Read more

Kids Can Help Make These Mother’s Day Toasts

by in Healthy Holidays, May 7, 2015

Just in time for Mother’s Day, we’re making a special toast (no, not the bubbly kind) that both moms and kids can enjoy. This crunchy, whole-grain breakfast option doesn’t even require a stovetop. Whether Mom has a sweet tooth or likes a savory breakfast (or both!), she’ll love these toasts. Plus, they’re perfectly portable, so you don’t even need a tray to serve her breakfast in bed. Kids can help with the prep and the spreads as well as the decorating. Read more

Food Network Test Kitchen Taste Test: Plant-Based Waters

by in Taste Test, March 17, 2015

The hydration bar has been raised. With a whole host of new plant-based drinks (even ones from trees!) flooding the marketplace, it’s never been more exciting to quench your thirst. We taste-tested a few of the new beverages in our test kitchen so you can pick your favorites.

Harmless Harvest: 100% Raw Coconut Water
What they say: This coconut drink is organically grown in Thailand, where the brand employs locals to do the harvesting and processing. Pressure-treated and never heated, each bottle has its own unique flavor.
Stats: 56 calories and a hefty 514 milligrams of potassium per single 8-ounce serving
What we thought: This water is what we’ve always wanted in a fruit-spiked product. With both floral and pleasant vegetal notes (someone mentioned toasted pumpkin seeds), the super-refreshing drink was a hit with staffers. Read more

Inside Food Network Kitchen: The One Healthy Food We Eat Every Day

by in Healthy Recipes, February 1, 2015


Here in Food Network Kitchen, food is our job. We eat just about everything, and we all try to eat healthy whenever we can. Between recipe tastings full of savories and sweets, everyone here has their one go-to healthy food they rely on. We thought you’d like to know what a bunch of food-obsessed nerds eat, so we took an internal survey.

Read more

The Secret to Great Gluten-Free Pizza? You’d Be Surprised.

by in Gluten-Free, May 10, 2014

meatball pizza

This Jimmy Kimmel video made the rounds this week when his show stumped a few civilians on the street by asking them to explain what gluten is. But Kimmel’s best line just might have been: “People are very anti-gluten, which bothers me because I’m very pro-pizza — and you can’t be pro-pizza and anti-gluten.”

Well, it turns out you actually can be — once you have a great gluten-free pizza dough. At Food Network Kitchen, we ate A LOT of gluten-free pizzas for research purposes before we developed our own gluten-free dough. From frozen to pizzeria-fresh, we tried everything we could get our hands on. Truth be told, most were disappointingly tough and gummy. Where was that chewy pull from the crust? After lots of conversation (and chewing), we realized that we were unfairly comparing gluten-free pizza dough to regular pizza dough. They are like apples and oranges. So we adjusted our expectations and found a few gluten-free pizzas that were good — and even some that were more than good.

Read more

A Little Bit of Cheese Goes a Long Way

by in Healthy Tips, March 19, 2013

Risotto with Yogurt and Peas

The March issue of Food Network Magazine is the cheese issue. While working on the issue, I found that you don’t need a ton of cheese to add big flavor; stretching out your cheese means fewer calories, and it’s cost effective, too. Use these tips in your everyday cooking:

A little goes a long way. When using strong cheeses like the blue cheese in this month’s Turkey Cobb Salad on page 96, remember that sometimes just a sprinkle is enough. We used only 1/4 cup (about 1 tablespoon per person)—that equals just 30 calories.

Reserve your rind. We added a piece of Parmesan rind to the broth for our light Risotto With Yogurt and Peas on page 150 (pictured above). This old-school cooking trick is something grandmothers have been doing for years—it’s a cost-saving way to add richness and depth.

Put your peeler to use. Try using it to create the shaved cheddar cheese on our Cheddar and Peanut Butter Bites on page 146. Peeling is a great way to ensure thin pieces of cheese; they’re just as satisfying as any hunk.

Breakfast Changes Lives

by in Food News, March 1, 2013

oatmeal
We’ve all heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and a new study shows just how important breakfast is for kids. The study, released by Share Our Strength, an organization Food Network has partnered with to raise money to fight childhood hunger, reveals that of the 21 million U.S. kids that get free or reduced-price school lunch, only a shocking half get breakfast. That means millions of children are starting their day hungry, making it more difficult for them to learn. The study also found that kids who eat school breakfast attend on average 1.5 more days of school, average 17.5% higher on math test scores and are 20% more likely to graduate high school.

Share Our Strength is making breakfast in schools a priority through Breakfast Changes Lives, an initiative in conjunction with the organization’s No Kid Hungry campaign.

Read more

Snacks With 100 Calories (or Fewer!)

by in Healthy Recipes, February 20, 2013

grapefruit
Mix up your snack routine with these fancy and fun low-snacks. Enjoy!

1. Roasted Sweet Potato with Salsa (92 calories)- Top half a medium baked skin-on sweet potato (51 calories) with 1/4 cup salsa (21 calories) and 2 teaspoons sour cream (20 calories).

2. Graprefruit Brulee (90 calories)- Sprinkle 1/2 a medium grapefruit (60 calories) with 2 teaspoons of turbinado sugar (30 calories) and broil until golden. (above, from Food Network Magazine)

Read more

A Cookie Classic Gets Thinner

by in Healthy Recipes, November 29, 2012

peanut butter cookies
Who doesn’t love a peanut butter cookie? The next time you’re craving crunchy, sweet and salty, try indulging in our Crunchy Peanut Butter Thins. We’ve trimmed the classic cookie down, making it leaner and crunchier (by adding chia seeds) and gave it just the right balance of salt and sweet. It’s prefect for a quick snack or if you need a little something after dinner. Enjoy!

Get the Recipe: Food Network Kitchens’ Crunchy Peanut Butter Thins