by Alia Akkam in Healthy Recipes, May 4, 2014
by Toby Amidor in Dining Out, June 11, 2013
Cinco de Mayo may officially be a commemoration of South-of-the-Border victory over France, but for many, it’s more of an opportunity to gorge on pitchers of too-sweet margaritas and baskets of tortilla chips. Healthy eaters craving a night of mariachi-inspired revelry, however, need not feel left out of the fun times. With these light, vivid spins on Mexican favorites, your biggest worry will be ensuring there’s enough hot sauce to go around.
Light Chicken Enchiladas (above, from Food Network Magazine)
All too often, these stuffed tortillas suffocate under an oppressive blanket of cheese. But in this version of the classic baked dish, which brings together skinless, boneless chicken breasts and thyme-accented tomato sauce, the bundles are topped with a humble sprinkle of shredded Muenster. A crown of fresh parsley and cilantro provides a welcome note of fresh greenery.
by Food Network Magazine in Which is Healthier?, June 2, 2013
If you think a night out at a Mexican restaurant will sabotage your healthy eating plan, think again! With a little knowledge and planning, there are plenty of options to choose from.
Chipotle Mexican Grill
After playing around with their nutrition calculator, I found the most balanced option was a salad with lettuce, 1 serving of steak, black beans, green tomatilla salsa and fajita veggies.
Nutrition Info: Calories: 355; Total Fat: 8 grams; Saturated Fat: 2 grams; Protein: 40 grams; Carbohydrates: 34 grams; Sodium: 975 milligrams
If you’re in the mood for a taco, choose the soft corn tortilla and one protein (chicken, steak, barbacoa, or carnitas) and top with veggies (lettuce and fajita veggies) and your favorite salsa. This will give you a nutritious meal for around 400 calories.
Check out more healthy Chipotle options.
Food Network Magazine compared some fiesta favorites — did your Mexican-food favorites come out on top?
Red Sangria vs. White Sangria
WINNER: Red sangria. Red wine is loaded with resveratrol, a compound in the skin of grapes that is thought to be good for the heart. White wine has none of this, plus many white sangria recipes call for fruit juice and sweet liquors, so they typically end up with higher sugar counts.
Yellow Corn Tortilla Chips vs. Blue Corn Tortilla Chips
WINNER: It’s a draw. Blue corn chips are often labeled as all natural, so people assume they’re the better choice. But the FDA doesn’t regulate the use of that term. In fact, the two varieties have the same number of calories and grams of fat. And because most of the sodium is added, the health factor depends more on the brand than on the color.
Cotija Cheese vs. Mexican Cheese Blend
WINNER: Mexican cheese blend. Ounce for ounce, these taco toppings have the same number of calories (about 100) and similar levels of fat and protein. But cotija cheese has three times as much sodium, giving Mexican cheese blend the edge.