Tag: comfort food

6 Comforting (and Healthy) Reasons to Turn the Oven Back On

by in Healthy Recipes, October 19, 2015

Chicken Pot PieDuring the summer, your oven likely worked as more of a storage space than the kitchen appliance it really is. Why would you have turned it on when the temperature was so blistering hot? Nowadays, however, things are starting to cool down, so it’s not crazy talk to consider preheating the oven. If you need that extra push, feast your eyes on healthy, comforting recipes that give you good reason to turn your oven back on.

Comfort food is always on the mind this time of year, and that’s true even if you’re eating healthy. Heat up your oven to make one of the heartiest casserole dishes of all: Chicken Pot Pie (pictured above). This better-for-you version comes with a buttery pie crust topping that’s flaky yet low in calories, plus a chicken-and-veggie filling made creamy with low-fat milk and Greek yogurt.

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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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This Week’s Nutrition News Feed

by in Food News, September 19, 2014

bread and butter
In this week’s news: Comfort foods are found to be not so soothing; diet soda gets a gut check; and addiction programs quit with the sweets.

Cold Comfort for Comfort Food Fans
What’s your go-to food when you’re feeling down? Carbs? Ice cream? You might as well reach for the carrot sticks and celery — or not snack at all. A new study has found that scarfing down comfort foods doesn’t actually boost mood more than eating healthier foods — or no food — does. Bad moods go away, the researchers determined, whether we eat that big pile of cookies or not. “We found no justification for people to choose comfort foods when they are distressed,” the researchers concluded, adding that they hoped their findings would lead people to skip the high-cal indulgences and “focus on other, food-free methods of improving their mood.” Read more

14 Healthy Slow-Cooker Recipes

by in Healthy Recipes, March 5, 2013

slow-cooker soup
Relieve your dinnertime stress by making a slow-cooker meal. Toss the ingredients in this easy-to-use countertop appliance, press the button, and enjoy a delicious meal a few hours later. Eating healthier couldn’t be any simpler!

A great dinner can be as simple as a warming soup and salad. Pair one of these on these delicious soups with a homemade salad using whatever veggies are in your refrigerator.

Pork Dishes
Lean cuts of pork are brimming with energy-boosting B-vitamins—just one of the reasons pork made our top-5 list of energy-boosting foods.

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10 Casseroles With 500 Calories (or Less!)

by in Healthy Recipes, February 28, 2013

mexican casserole
Casseroles are perfect when temps dips below freezing, and they’re convenient too — everything’s all in one dish. Whether you like them for breakfast, lunch or dinner, warm up to any of these lighter casseroles — each has 500 calories or less.

Breakfast Casseroles
Weekends are a good time to whip up a breakfast casserole. An egg dish or a French toast bake will help start your day off right.

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500 Calorie (or less) Comfort Foods

by in Healthy Recipes, Meal Makeovers, January 28, 2013

As I was driving home yesterday, my car thermometer showed an outside temperature of 17 degrees F. In these frigid temperatures, comfort foods make you feel warm and cozy. But they don’t have to be over-the-top indulgent; here are 12 comfort food classics with fewer than 500 calories per serving.

Fried Chicken

Ellie’s super-simple spin on fried chicken uses crushed corn cereal flakes plus a blend of spices for a very crunchy dish. It’s a staple in my busy house with only about 10 minutes of prep time!
Recipe: Oven-Fried Chicken

A touch of sweet Italian turkey sausage makes this pasta dish hearty, yet sensible. The cheese layer’s filled with part-skim ricotta and low fat cottage cheese along with some part-skim mozzarella, which helps keep the calories in check at 350 per serving.

Recipe: Food Network Kitchen’s Sausage Lasagna

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Pepper-Jack Cheese Fries

by in Uncategorized, January 3, 2013

cheese fries

Cheese fries and healthy eats aren’t mutually exclusive. At least not the way I make them. Sure, you can get cheese fries loaded up nacho-style, but bear in mind, one serving dishes up to 800 calories, 50 grams of fat and 2/3 of your sodium for the day (a whopping 1,000 mg). Considering one medium Russet potato has about 140 calories and is virtually fat and sodium free, that’s a heaping pile of lard on top of otherwise healthy spuds.

Not to worry, I’ve got your back. First, I bake the potatoes until golden brown and then I top them with shredded pepper jack cheese and fresh salsa (I prefer fresh salsa from my favorite Mexican restaurant or the produce section of the grocery store). You can also get crazy and top the potatoes with homemade chili (regular, turkey, vegetarian), and feel free to swap out the pepper jack for aged white cheddar. You can even top the whole concoction with sliced (jarred) jalapenos and sliced black olives.

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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

Gluten-Free Comfort Food Is Just a Slow Cooker Away

by in Gluten-Free, November 1, 2012

gluten-free slow-cooker recipe
Confession: I had never used a slow cooker until I developed this recipe. Yes, it feels almost un-American to say, but it’s the truth. If you don’t grow up in a home where a slow cooker sits comfortably on the kitchen counter (my mom, Penny, has never owned one in her life), what are the odds that you’d ever switch on a slow cooker? It took me more than two decades of cooking to finally be curious enough to try one and now I can sincerely say, I get it.

The “set-it-and-forget-it” slogan says it all—almost. I guess I was afraid of the always-possible mush factor and I didn’t exactly want shredded chicken. With a bit of trial and error, I realized that sauteing before adding to the slow cooker and timing exactly when I stir in particular ingredients makes a big difference in the finished meal.

What’s your favorite meal to make in your slow cooker?

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Winter Activity Foods

by in Healthy Recipes, January 8, 2012

spinach artichoke dip

Winter has arrived! Whether you’re hitting the slopes or in the backyard building a snowman, being active in the cold weather is a workout. Come in from the cold and recharge your batteries with these satisfying, bone-warming foods.

Mexican Hot Chocolate
Mulled Apple Cider with Ginger and Orange

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