Yes, Greek yogurt makes an awesome breakfast, a fabulous snack and a protein-packed dessert. But don’t relegate it to just those uses: This yogurt is capable of so much more!
First, the nutritional stats: When compared to most regular yogurt, Greek yogurt has 2 times the amount of protein. In fact, 1 cup has as much protein as 3 ounces of chicken. It’s also rich in calcium (important for strong bones and teeth and a healthy heart and nervous system). Lastly, Greek yogurt is rich in probiotics, which improve digestive health by maintaining levels of “good” bacteria in the gut (make sure the label says “active cultures”).
Because 1 cup of fat-free Greek yogurt has just 120 calories and 0 grams of fat, it offers an excellent way to slim down recipes while adding tang. Even whole-milk Greek yogurt has just 190 calories and 9 grams of fat per cup (compare that to 1 cup of regular sour cream with 492 calories and 48 grams of fat).
Here are 16 healthy ways to make the most of it.
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Don’t waste your money on secret potions and potentially dangerous supplements to lose weight. Instead, include these real foods in your diet to help trim your waistline.
Did you know popcorn is a whole grain? One cup of air-popped popcorn has between 30 to 55 calories and 5% of your recommended daily dose of hunger shielding fiber. Snack on 2 cups with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese or 1 tablespoon of whipped butter with ¼ teaspoon sea salt. You can also make your own in the microwave in a flash.
Recipe: Chocolate-Orange Brown Butter Flavored Popcorn
#2: Greek Yogurt
With more protein than traditional yogurt per ounce, nonfat plain Greek yogurt can fill you up so you’ll be less likely to mindlessly snack. Not sure which brand to choose? Check how popular brands fared in Dana’s taste test.
Recipe: Fruit Salad with Limoncello and Greek Yogurt
These crustaceans pack a protein punch for very few calories. One ounce (4 large shrimp) has 30 calories, 6 grams of protein and has minimal fat. Shrimp is also a good source of vitamin D and selenium and even contains several energy-boosting B-vitamins. If you’re allergic to shellfish or just don’t care for shrimp, choose skinless, boneless chicken breast which has 46 calories, 9 grams of protein and 1 gram of fat per ounce.
Recipe: Robin’s Coconut Shrimp
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Everyone seems to be going ga-ga for Greek yogurt these days! While the tangy, creamy goodness makes for flavorful chicken salad, smoothies and dips, food manufacturers are jumping on the bandwagon offering all kinds of Greek yogurt-filled goods.
Folks dig Greek yogurt for it’s thicker texture and pungent flavor. It’s also higher in protein than regular yogurt, plus it offers those tummy-pleasing probiotics. Our recent taste tests (for plain and flavored varieties) unveiled that there’s quite a difference in flavor across the numerous brands out there.
The freezer section has gone Greek! Not only can you find pints of Greek fro -o (Vanilla Honey Carmel from Ben & Jerry’s anyone?), you can also find portion-controlled frozen bars made with Greek yogurt and real fruit. As far as we can tell, the majority of these frozen goodies are made with real Greek yogurt, but buyers should beware of the health “halo” – many brands have just as much sugar and calories as ice cream!
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Back in 2010, we did our Nonfat Greek Yogurt Taste Test and there were only a few brands to choose from. Today, the number of companies making Greek yogurt has exploded, and so have the flavor options. So how do the flavored varieties stack up? Find out.
I used our typical 5-point scale (5 being the highest) to rate these yogurts. For nutrition, I paid close attention to calories, protein and sugar content. Even plain Greek yogurt contains some natural sugars from milk (aka lactose) but when looking at flavored varieties, there’s often a large variation of ingredients. Sugars on the label can come from milk, fruit and/or added sugars.
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Greek yogurt is all the rage lately–just ask Iron Chef Michael Symon who eats the stuff every day. But have you tried it in convenient granola bar form? Made with oats and a dash of honey plus various fruits and nuts, Rickland Orchards gives each bar a Greek yogurt coating to seal the deal.
You can buy your own Rickland Orchards Greek Yogurt Bars or enter in the comments for a chance to win one. Just let us know, in the comments, your favorite way to eat Greek yogurt. The contest starts at 10:00 a.m. EST today, and ends on Friday, January 25 at 5 p.m. EST.
We’re giving away one sleeve of Rickland Orchards Greek Yogurt Bars (that’s 40 bars!) to five lucky, randomly-selected commenters. 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 January 23 and 5 p.m. EST on January 25, 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: $55. Sponsor: Scripps Networks, LLC, d/b/a Food Network, 9721 Sherrill Blvd, Knoxville, TN 37932.
So tell us, how do you eat your Greek yogurt?
Deciding whether a food is healthy or not can be really difficult, especially when food companies market their products in such clever ways. It’s even harder to decide between foods with healthy components, or similar-sounding foods. For this food fight we’ll explore regular and Greek-style yogurt — which one is the better choice?
Greek-style yogurt contains less water than regular varieties. This creates yogurt with tangier flavor and thicker consistency; this also affects the nutrition facts. One cup of non-fat plain Greek yogurt has 80 calories and 13 grams of protein (comparison to regular yogurt is below). The calcium and vitamin D content of all yogurts will vary from brand to brand (and whether you choose, non-fat, low-fat or whole milk) so check labels.
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Diet is a critical part of any athlete’s training—especially at the London 2012 Olympics. Long hours of practice make protein-rich good-for-you foods a must. That’s where Chobani comes in. Whether you’re an average Joe or a medal winning athlete, this high-protein, all-natural yogurt is the perfect fuel to power your day.
You can buy your own Chobani or enter in the comments for a chance to win coupons good for free Chobani yogurt, which you can redeem at your local grocery store. Just let us know, in the comments, your favorite Greek yogurt flavor. The contest starts at 10:00 a.m. EST today, and ends on Friday, July 27 at 5 p.m. EST.
We’re giving away five Chobani (6 oz.) coupons to 25 lucky, randomly-selected commenters. 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 July 25 and 5 p.m. EST on July 27, 2012. Subject to full official rules. By leaving a comment on the blog, you acknowledge your acceptance to the Official Rules. ARV of each prize: approx $6.45. Sponsor: Scripps Networks, LLC, d/b/a Food Network, 9721 Sherrill Blvd, Knoxville, TN 37932.
So tell us, what’s your favorite Greek yogurt flavor?
- The Contenders: Which Greek Yogurt Tastes Best?
When we did our vanilla yogurt taste test a few weeks back, everyone asked about Greek yogurt. We shopped for the brands our Facebook fans asked for — find out how they stacked up. Plus: Our favorite ways (sweet and savory) to use this creamy treat.
Get the taste-test results »
There’s plenty to love about warm-weather eats. On this week’s menu of reader comments: spice rubs (great for grilling!) and a seasonal veggie salad, perfect as a side dish at a summer cookout. Plus, weigh in on our next taste test.
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Cookout season kicks off this holiday weekend, and with ideas from our readers, we’re ready to get started. Plus, we’ve included the latest feedback on our yogurt taste test, including a savory yogurt-based dip — perfect for nibbling while you get your grill on.
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