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Healthy Alternatives to Your Traditional Winter Comfort Food Recipes

Lemon & Dill Chicken

(Courtesy of Eating Well)

Ingredients:

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, (1-1 ¼ pounds)
  • Salt & freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 3 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, or canola oil, divided
  • ¼ cup finely chopped onion
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 teaspoons flour
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill, divided
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

Directions:

  1. Season chicken breasts on both sides with salt and pepper. Heat 1 1/2 teaspoons oil in a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat.
  2. Add the chicken and sear until well browned on both sides, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer chicken to a plate and tent with foil.
  3. Reduce heat to medium. Add the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons oil to the pan. Add onion and garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute.
  4. Whisk broth, flour, 1 tablespoon dill and lemon juice in a measuring cup and add to pan. Cook, whisking, until slightly thickened, about 3 minutes.
  5. Return the chicken and any accumulated juices to the pan; reduce heat to low and simmer until the chicken is cooked through, about 4 minutes.
  6. Transfer the chicken to a warmed platter. Season sauce with salt and pepper and spoon over the chicken. Garnish with the remaining 1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill.

Nutrition:

Per serving: 173 calories; 6 g fat (1 g sat, 4 g mono); 64 mg cholesterol; 3 g carbohydrates; 0 g added sugars; 24 g protein; 0 g fiber; 236 mg sodium; 219 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Selenium (30% daily value).

Exchanges: 3 very lean meat, 1 fat

To view recipe source, click here.

Slow-Cooker Vegetarian Lasagna

(Courtesy of Eating Well)         

Ingredients:

  • 1 large egg
  • 1 15- to 16-ounce container part-skim ricotta
  • 1 5-ounce package baby spinach, coarsely chopped
  • 3 large or 4 small portobello mushroom caps, gills removed (see Tip), halved and thinly sliced
  • 1 small zucchini, quartered lengthwise and thinly sliced
  • 1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • Pinch of crushed red pepper (optional)
  • 15 whole-wheat lasagna noodles (about 12 ounces), uncooked
  • 3 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella, divided

Preparation

  1. Combine egg, ricotta, spinach, mushrooms and zucchini in a large bowl.
  2. Combine crushed and diced tomatoes and their juice, garlic and crushed red pepper (if using) in a medium bowl.
  3. Generously coat a 6-quart or larger slow cooker with cooking spray. Spread 1 1/2 cups of the tomato mixture in the slow cooker. Arrange 5 noodles over the sauce, overlapping them slightly and breaking into pieces to cover as much of the sauce as possible. Spread half of the ricotta-vegetable mixture over the noodles and firmly pat down, then spoon on 1 1/2 cups sauce and sprinkle with 1 cup mozzarella. Repeat the layering one more time, starting with noodles. Top with a third layer of noodles. Evenly spread the remaining tomato sauce over the noodles. Set aside the remaining 1 cup mozzarella in the refrigerator.
  4. Put the lid on the slow cooker and cook on High for 2 hours or on Low for 4 hours. Turn off the slow cooker, sprinkle the reserved mozzarella on the lasagna, cover and let stand for 10 minutes to melt the cheese.

Nutrition:

Per serving: 414 calories; 14 g fat (8 g sat, 4 g mono); 63 mg cholesterol; 48 g carbohydrates; 0 g added sugars; 28 g protein; 7 g fiber; 641 mg sodium; 829 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Calcium & Vitamin A (56% daily value), Vitamin C (39% dv), Iron & Magnesium (26% dv), Zinc (25% dv), Potassium (24% dv), Folate (18% dv).

Carbohydrate Servings: 3

Exchanges: 2 starch, 2 vegetable, 2 1/2 medium-fat meat

For additional information on this recipe, click here.

Chicken & Spinach Soup with Fresh Pesto

(Courtesy of Eating Well)

Ingredients:

  • 2 teaspoons plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1/2 cup carrot or diced red bell pepper
  • 1 large boneless, skinless chicken breast (about 8 ounces), cut into quarters
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • 5 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried marjoram
  • 6 ounces baby spinach, coarsely chopped
  • 1 15-ounce can cannellini beans or great northern beans, rinsed
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/3 cup lightly packed fresh basil leaves
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 3/4 cup plain or herbed multigrain croutons for garnish (optional)

Directions:

  1. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large saucepan or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add carrot (or bell pepper) and chicken; cook, turning the chicken and stirring frequently, until the chicken begins to brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute more.
  2. Stir in broth and marjoram; bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is cooked through, about 5 minutes.
  3. With a slotted spoon, transfer the chicken pieces to a clean cutting board to cool. Add spinach and beans to the pot and bring to a gentle boil. Cook for 5 minutes to blend the flavors.
  4. Combine the remaining 1 tablespoon oil, Parmesan and basil in a food processor (a mini processor works well). Process until a coarse paste forms, adding a little water and scraping down the sides as necessary.
  5. Cut the chicken into bite-size pieces. Stir the chicken and pesto into the pot. Season with pepper. Heat until hot. Garnish with croutons, if desired.

Nutrition:

Per serving: 204 calories; 8 g fat (2 g sat, 4 g mono); 29 mg cholesterol; 16 g carbohydrates; 18 g protein; 6 g fiber; 691 mg sodium; 529 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin A (110% daily value), Folate & Vitamin C (20% dv).

Carbohydrate Servings: 1/2

Exchanges: 1 starch, 1 vegetable, 2 lean meat, 1 fat

For additional information on this recipe, click here.

MedicAlert Team Member