Win This Dehydrator!

by in Giveaway, October 16, 2013

dehydrator

Dehydrated fruits and vegetables aren’t just for outdoors-y types going on a camping trip. Apples, pears, bell peppers, tomatoes—you name it—can be turned into healthy, portable snacks for anyone. Instead of always turning to store-bought versions, enjoy ones you make at home with the Excalibur Dehydrator. The five-tray machine provides 8 square feet of space to dry many different foods—even meat.

You can buy your own Excalibur Dehydrator or enter in the comments for a chance to win one. Just let us know, in the comments, what you’re most excited to dehydrate first. The contest starts at 10:00 a.m. EST today, and ends on Friday, October 18 at 5 p.m. EST.

We’re giving away one Excalibur Dehydrator to one randomly-selected commenter. You must include your email address in the “Email” field when submitting your comment so we can communicate with you if you’re a winner.

You may only comment once to be considered and you don’t have to purchase anything to win; a purchase will not increase your chances of winning. Odds depend on total number of entries. Void where prohibited. Only open to legal residents of 50 U.S. states, D.C. or Puerto Rico, and you must be at least 18 to win. For the first day of the giveaway, all entries (answers) must be entered between 10:00 a.m. EST on October 16 and 5 p.m. EST on October 18, 2013. Subject to full official rules. By leaving a comment on the blog, you acknowledge your acceptance to the Official Rules. ARV of each prize: $249.95. Sponsor: Scripps Networks, LLC, d/b/a Food Network, 9721 Sherrill Blvd, Knoxville, TN 37932.

So tell us, what are you most excited to dehydrate first? Fruits? Veggies? Meat?

Breakfast: Myths vs. Facts

by in Myth vs Fact, October 15, 2013

breakfast spread
There’s so much misinformation swarming around about breakfast. Read on for the facts about this important meal.

Myth: My kids should eat breakfast, but I don’t have to.
Fact: As a mom or dad, you need even more energy to keep up with your kids! Also keep in mind that parents set an example for their children. If your kids should see you munching first thing in the morning, they are more likely to make it a lifelong habit.

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5 Frozen Foods to Stock (and 5 to Skip)

by in Grocery Shopping, October 14, 2013

frozen peas
Your freezer was created to preserve food for long periods of time. But filling it with junk can sabotage any healthy eating plan. Here are five items worth purchasing, and five you’re better off passing up.

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More Foods That Fill You Up

by in Healthy Tips, October 13, 2013

oranges

Ever wonder why a doughnut leaves you hungry within moments of finishing, while a bowl of oatmeal keeps you full for hours? An innovative study conducted in the 1990s looked at how “full” someone stayed after consuming 240 calories of a variety of foods. The top five scorers were all whole foods and, surprisingly, the No. 1 food to keep you full is often vilified for its high carbohydrate content. (Note: Most vegetables were not included in the study, likely due to the fact that consuming 240 calories of kale would require a lot of chewing! But based on the factors associated with satiety, I assume they would score very well.) Here are six foods that made the list.
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15 Uses for Fruit Preserves (Beyond Toast!)

by in Robin's Healthy Take, October 12, 2013

fruit preserves
No matter what variety of fruit preserve you choose–orange marmalade, strawberry, apricot, mixed berry, peach, raspberry-cranberry, or even boysenberry–the low-sugar varieties can be a healthy cook’s BFF in the kitchen, with just about 8 calories and 1 gram of sugar per teaspoon. Here’s how to liven up a variety of meals, far beyond toasted bread.

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Delicata Squash with Sunflower Seeds

by in Uncategorized, October 12, 2013

delicata squash
It’s winter squash season which means sweet, savory roasted vegetables that warm us on cold days. It also means tough, thick squash skin that can be a pain to peel or cut away. Delicata squash is the perfect solution, as the small, delicate squash can be eaten, skin and all. Try this recipe for roasted delicata squash with sunflower seeds. (The addition of the seeds adds protein, healthy fats, iron, calcium and a yummy, nutty, flavor.) This is a simple, healthy, any-night dish.

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8 Tricks for Using Kitchen Scraps

by in Uncategorized, October 11, 2013

carrot with tops
It isn’t rare to hear comments about the costs associated with eating healthy. But utilizing food scraps (like stale bread and carrot stems), which are inevitable in most kitchens, is one easy way to save money. Here are eight tips.

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5 Chicken Kitchen Safety Tips

by in Food News, Food Safety, October 10, 2013

chicken meat
After nearly 300 people became sick from salmonella in 18 states, the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) issued a public health alert. The culprit is raw chicken produced at three Foster Farms facilities in California. Luckily, proper handling of poultry can help prevent illness. To do so, make sure to follow these five food safety rules.

#1: Defrost Properly
Those days of defrosting on your counter top overnight are long gone. One bacterium can multiply to 1 billion over 10 hours—something you don’t want to fool around with. To properly defrost chicken, place it in the refrigerator on a tray the night before. If you have smaller pieces of chicken, you can defrost in the microwave (look for the “defrost” button), as long as you cook them immediately after.

#2: Store Chicken Properly
When placing raw chicken in the refrigerator, make sure it is wrapped and stored on a lower shelf. Only proper cooking can destroy the bacteria, so foods that will not be further cooked (like cheese, veggies or fruit) should be placed above the raw chicken so the chicken juices won’t drip on them.

#3: Skip the Rinsing
Could it be that Julia Child’s habit of rinsing chicken has stuck with us after all these years? A recent study conducted at Drexel University found that 90% of folks still do it! For the first time, in 2005, the USDA’s Dietary Guidelines for Americans included food safety, and they advise against rinsing chicken before cooking. The reason is that those chicken juices get all over the place—other dishes, the inside of the sink and the counter tops–creating a bacterial playground.

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10 Healthy (and Easy) Canned Bean Recipes

by in Healthy Tips, October 10, 2013

eggs with beans
From simple sides to upscale mains dishes, here’s how to get more of this tasty and budget-friendly protein into your diet.

What to look for
The health benefits of beans are extensive. Canned varieties make for quick recipes, plus you can’t beat the price. Canned foods do get a bad rap for being super salty, but rinsing and draining canned beans can remove up to 40 percent of the sodium. Low-sodium and no-salt added varieties are also available.

10 Healthy Recipes
Chunky chili, smooth hummus and warm and satisfying baked beans are just a few of the healthy creations you can whip up.

1. Pinto beans: Mexican Eggs with Chorizo and Beans (above, from Food Network Magazine)

2. Pinto beans: Cowboy Beans

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