6 Classic Comfort Foods with a Cauliflower Twist — Fall Fest

by in Healthy Recipes, October 15, 2015

For most of us, raw cauliflower isn’t the thing that gets our hearts racing. But never mind crudites — it’s that time of year when we need ready-to-bake lasagnas on hand in the fridge, or simple, satisfying pasta recipes to whip up on a busy weeknight. As it turns out, there are plenty of clever ways to incorporate the tender, winter-white florets into the season’s most-time-honored comfort foods. You can even replace traditional mashed potatoes with mashed cauliflower, or try tossing the roasted florets in hot sauce for a lighter alternative to Buffalo chicken wings. Whether you’re preparing a hearty sit-down meal or a casual snack to enjoy at the next big tailgate, here are six ways to revamp classic comfort foods by giving them a healthy cauliflower twist.

Roasted Cauliflower Lasagna (pictured at top)
When we’re talking comfort food, lasagna is one of the first dishes to come to mind. Beef, although classic, doesn’t need to be a part of the equation — especially if you’re looking to cut fat from your diet. In Food Network Kitchen’s healthy take, cauliflower is the star. The tender florets are not only blended into the ricotta cheese filling for texture, but also roasted and used in place of the traditional meatballs or sausage.

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Store-Bought Snack Packs for Kids

by in Grocery Shopping, October 15, 2015

Sometimes, picking up a box of easy-to-tote snacks to toss in your child’s lunchbox can help make those crazy mornings just a little easier to handle. Here are seven healthy snack packs your kiddos will love. Read more

5 Healthy Ways to Pump Up the Fresh Pumpkin

by in Healthy Recipes, In Season, October 14, 2015

Cooking with Fresh PumpkinThough canned pumpkin puree stars in many of our favorite baked goods, fresh-picked pumpkin isn’t as widely used, even when it’s in season. As it turns out, fresh pumpkins have uses beyond jack-o’-lantern carving: Cooking with this tender-when-roasted squash variety brings a hearty, mildly sweet element to many of our favorite fall dishes. This season, use a little elbow grease to break down fresh, in-season pumpkin so you can use it in some of fall’s finest good-for-you recipes.

1. Next time you crave innately creamy risotto, bring morsels of diced, semisweet pumpkin into the mix. This Creamy Baked Pumpkin Risotto, made extra-creamy and luxurious with the addition of mascarpone cheese, is cooked in the oven so you won’t have to stand over the stove for endless stirring.

2. Amplify the sweetness of standard pumpkin soup by bringing in juicy (and also in-season) apples. The Honeycrisp variety, as well as chopped sage, adds multiple layers of flavor to this healthy Pumpkin-Apple Soup, which gets a garnish of chopped peanuts on top.

3. If you haven’t considered fresh pumpkin as a contender for your side dishes, meet Anne Burrell’s Curried Pumpkin with Caramelized Onions. Cooked low and slow for over an hour, this mild, slightly sweet squash variety becomes dynamic with a seasoning of garam masala, red pepper flakes and toasted green pumpkin seeds.

4. Scoop out a pumpkin’s flesh to make way for a festive fall presentation of Food Network Magazine’s Squash Soup in Pumpkin Bowls. Use the hollow pumpkin as a vehicle for this healthy, creamy, slightly sweet soup, and bits of roasted and tender pumpkin will work their way into your spoonfuls.

5. Bring another side of fresh pumpkin into your comfort food dishes. Turkey and Pumpkin Seed Chili may not call for the flesh of the fall favorite, but the pumpkin’s seeds bring a satisfying crunchy element to warming, good-for-you and cocoa-spiked chili.

Get even more healthy ways to cook with both fresh and pureed pumpkin here.

Budget-Friendly Shopping: Bulk vs. Packaged Grains

by in Healthy Tips, October 14, 2015

Whole-grain options have come a long way! Now some of the more obscure varieties are easier to find in stores and online. Many of these grains are available for purchase in bulk and packaged, but which is a better deal? We did some investigating. Read more

Low-Sodium Double Pumpkin Butter

by in Healthy Recipes, October 13, 2015

Double Pumpkin Butter

On the list of classic lunches, peanut butter and jelly ranks at the top. It’s a simple combo of rich, nutty peanut butter with berry-flavored jam, all snuggled together between two fluffy pieces of bread. And whether you cut the crusts, go chunky versus smooth or toss in some sliced bananas, the balance of sweet and savory makes it a favorite of kids and adults alike. Read more

Are Pears the New Apples?

by in Healthy Recipes, October 13, 2015

Head to your local market and you’ll find delicious pears piled high right next to all those apples. Many recipes are substituting crunchy pears in place of apples. It appears that pears are everywhere — but are they the new apples?

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Chai Apple Pie Smoothie Bowl

by in Healthy Recipes, October 12, 2015

Fall is officially here, and what better way to kick off the season than with a rich and creamy, no-added-sugar Chai Apple Pie Smoothie Bowl. Laced with heart-healthy spices, and naturally sweetened with fruit, this protein- and fiber-rich fall-inspired smoothie bowl is sure to warm your heart — and power your day. Read more

Homemade Fast-Food Alternatives for Kids

by in Healthy Recipes, October 12, 2015

French Fries

Are your kids big fans of fast food? Try these healthy, homemade and kid-friendly alternatives. Read more

What Celebrities Eat for Lunch

by in Healthy Tips, October 11, 2015

Want more proof that celebrities are just like us? They eat lunch! Yes, it’s true. It’s not just us plebs who take time to consume a midday meal. Health-conscious celebrities also take out their Tupperware and foil to wrap up their lunches — or mindfully (or not) order off the menu.

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Taste Test: Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Cookie Mixes

by in Taste Test, October 10, 2015

Among Friends Darcy’s Delish Old Fashioned Chocolate Chip Cookie Mix
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