Browse Category by Light and Healthier
Light and Healthier, Recipes, Veggies and Fruit

Roasted Red Pepper Pasta

We try – and sometimes succeed – to make Monday a meatless Monday when dinner time rolls around.  When I described this meal to my kids they wrinkled their noses – but – they liked it!  you could add in veggies if you like – I kept it simple for the first try.

I roasted my red peppers on my new pellet grill.  They don’t “char” like they do on gas, but they sort of melt into this roast-y gorgeous deep red/brown color that peels wonderfully and tastes amazing.  Once they’re suitably cooked down on the grill and squished, put them in a sealed bowl (cover with plastic wrap) for about 20 minutes – the skin just slides right off.  Cut off the tops and take out the seeds and voila – roasted red peppers.  If you use your grill and they get black, it’s okay – that works too!

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Light and Healthier, Menu Planning, Recipes, Weeknight Favorites

20 No Cook Dinner Ideas – Beat the Heat!

It’s June.  It’s Hot.  Our A/C is not working and the repair guys wont be here for another 3 days.  I am not getting anywhere near the oven, stove, microwave or any other form of heat until it’s fixed.

I know I’m not the only one suffering from lack of cool air, albeit temporarily.  This made me think of some ideas for no-cook dinners for days when even plugging in the toaster is too much.  If you have anything to add, I’d love to hear your no-cook ideas!

  1. Turkey Sandwich with Potato Chips.  Okay – this is a no brainer, but I think we forget this can be dinner, too.  There’s no reason this has to be that complicated.  Make a sandwich, add some chips, carrot sticks or a salad and voila – yum.  The key to making this dinner-like is the toppings – dont just slap some meat and cheese on a piece of bread, get creative.  Thin sliced cucumbers, alfalfa sprouts, shredded carrots, jarred or deli red peppers and/or pepperoncini.  Make it awesome!
  2. Wrap it up!  Make a salad, add some diced ham or turkey and wrap it up in a tomato basil or spinach wrap.  Serve with chips or store-bought potato salad.  I have a weakness for the redskin potato salad from City Market (Kroger.)  You can also make yummy Cucumbers with Lemony Dressing to go with it.

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Entertaining, Light and Healthier, Menu Planning, Recipes, Veggies and Fruit

Cucumbers with Lemony Dressing

I love salads that don’t actually involve lettuce.  While lettuce is fine, it’s like a talisman to the fact that I’m actually dieting, which irritates me, so I pretend I don’t like it.  I’m always looking for something quick to throw together to make a non-lettuce salad to go with dinner.  I stumbled across this recipe from The Dinner Daily and adjusted it a bit for our tastes.

Whether you use cucumber, pour it on a zucchini noodle salad, pour it on a regular salad, or spoon a bit over blanched or roasted asparagus, this is really fresh and light.  You may be tempted to skip the salt and pepper, but that’s probably the most important part – it brings out the liquid in the veg, and salt counter-balances the sweet from the lemon and sugar.  you could substitute stevia in here if you wanted, easy peasy.

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Budget Friendly, Light and Healthier, Menu Planning, Recipes

Pesto Pasta with Sun Dried Tomatoes & Asparagus

I found this recipe on Pinterest and adapted it a bit from the one Damn Delicious posted.  Hubby had his with a fried egg on top, and really enjoyed it.  Runny egg yolks are not my thing without toast, so I skipped the egg and enjoyed mine with a sprinkling of fresh grated parmesan cheese.  The egg definitely adds protein though – so to boost it if you don’t want eggs, try a legume like chickpeas or cannellini beans.

The Boy had his without egg and cleaned his plate, so even good for picky eaters.  My kids both love roasted asparagus, though – so that makes things easier!

Serve with a green salad and garlic bread – perfect quick-cooking, no plan meal.

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Entertaining, Light and Healthier, Recipes, Weeknight Favorites

Cowboy Caviar – Small Batch

small cowboy caviar recipe

I found a nice recipe for Cowboy Caviar but honestly – they make SO MUCH and I really didn’t need to have so much in my fridge.  I cut the recipe here and there and it still made quite a bit – great for a couple or small gathering.

Hubby hates cilantro – so I made it optional here.  Use whatever bell pepper you have on hand, I like yellow, orange & red better than green – but green would work okay as well.  I do think that red onion is a must, a regular yellow onion would be too strong.

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Entertaining, Light and Healthier, Menu Planning, Recipes, Weeknight Favorites

Grilled Chicken with Mango Salsa and Coconut Rice

I have posted previously about my dislike for fruit and meat combos, and I’ll stick to that in MOST cases – but last night I made a mango salsa that was amazing with grilled chicken.  Coconut rice was the perfect accompaniment – its not overpowering, and it was really tasty on a piece of Naan Bread with the salsa and chicken.

I bet this salsa would be good with fish, too.  I’m not a huge fish fan – but if I get some nice Cod, Halibut or something else I’ll try it grilled with this salsa.

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