SparkPeople Cooking Secrets http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets-category.asp?category=cooking Learn some of the secrets of success for Cooking from SparkPeople members. SparkPeople Cooking Secrets http://www.sparkpeople.com/assets/nav/nav_logo_v3.gif http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets-category.asp?category=cooking Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46667_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Fri, 24 Jun 2016 05:25:00 EST Budget-Friendly Quick-Fix Meals http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46655_budgetfriendly_quickfix_meals Everyone in your family will love the taste of these budget recipes—even the kids!<br><br>Cheap and quick—those are magic words for busy cooks who don’t want to shortchange flavor just to save a few pennies. Our budget-friendly dinner recipes are low on cost and high on creativity. Feel like Italian? Try Cast-Iron Chicken Piccata, Speedy Lasagna, or Chicken Parmesan Pizza. Leaning toward Tex-Mex? Whip up a cheap and quick dinner featuring Southwest Chicken Rice Bowl or Taco Dinner Mac and Che... Thu, 23 Jun 2016 07:13:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46654_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Thu, 23 Jun 2016 06:33:00 EST Substituting Broth for Oil http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46604_substituting_broth_for_oil I substitute vegetable broth for vegetable or olive oil when frying anything. It lowers calories and is healthier for me. I used to fry in oil or butter, and that caused me to gain at least fifteen pounds because of the fat. But the vegetable broth is easy to make by simmering fresh vegetables in water and straining, plus it can be frozen. I use an ice tray to freeze it, then pop out a cube of broth when I need it. Best part is it's low fat, since the calories come from the vegetables. It too... Mon, 20 Jun 2016 03:24:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46560_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Fri, 17 Jun 2016 05:35:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46542_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Thu, 16 Jun 2016 05:25:00 EST Barley for Breakfast http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46531_barley_for_breakfast What has twice the protein and almost half the calories as oats? Barley, and it’s about time we started eating it for breakfast.<br>Not only does barley have a wonderfully nutty flavor and a chewy, hearty texture, but it’s also a nutritious, high-fiber grain that boasts an array of health benefits. In fact, it’s been linked to improved blood sugar levels, appetite regulation, and the reduction of cardiovascular disease (as much so as oats!), according to a new research review conducted by St.... Wed, 15 Jun 2016 07:37:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46457_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Fri, 10 Jun 2016 05:09:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46436_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Thu, 9 Jun 2016 05:36:00 EST Healthy Cooking and Loving it.. http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46387_healthy_cooking_and_loving_it A lot of new men and women today have never learned to cook... The tend to go into a Grocery Store and by the Heat and Eat as I call them.. Way back in my day it was called TV Dinners.. Today they call some Health and easy to do.. but if you take a look at them ... There is a lot of things you may not even know to say or know what it is.. Fancy Terms of Salt or things to persevere it so it will be able to sit on a shelf or frozen longer.. Weight Watchers to Jenny Craig...Now they have Graze B... Mon, 6 Jun 2016 14:44:00 EST Why cooking at home is best for weight loss http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46376_why_cooking_at_home_is_best_for_weight_loss A new report shows that eating a healthy home cooked meal can put you on the fast track to a slimmer waistline and a healthier, fitter you.<br><br>The less you cook, the more weight you gain. I found people who cook their own dinner most nights tend to swallow significantly less sugar, fat, and calories than people who rarely cook. (And no, heating up a pre-packaged meal doesn’t count as “cooking.”) Specifically, at-home chefs eat about 140 fewer calories per day, which could add up to severa... Sun, 5 Jun 2016 23:07:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46321_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Fri, 3 Jun 2016 05:12:00 EST 11 Things We Wish We Had Known About Cooking in College http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46305_11_things_we_wish_we_had_known_about_cooking_in_college 1. That I could cook for myself at all!<br>Like I said above, I didn't realize in college that you could make poached eggs or polenta in the microwave, or that a bag of salad and some deli cooked chicken would be a much better meal than a frozen pizza. On Twitter, @cookitpretty said much the same thing: "I wish I knew how much I love it and how much I'm capable of. Would've been great to start my kitchen-ucation then!"<br><br>There's a surprising amount you can do even in ultra-limited space ... Thu, 2 Jun 2016 02:42:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46303_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Thu, 2 Jun 2016 00:24:00 EST Cooking for Weight Loss http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46285_cooking_for_weight_loss There's usually no single cause for being overweight or obese, and there’s no single solution either. But there are some simple steps you can take that will gradually shed pounds in a healthy way. (Hint: To weigh less, cook more!)<br>Home cooking puts you in control of what goes into your food and your body.<br><br>Here are some guidelines to get you into the kitchen and cooking healthy!<br>•Put vegetables at the top of your shopping list and plan your meals around them instead of what kind o... Wed, 1 Jun 2016 07:12:00 EST Sauteed Cabbage and Zucchini http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46265_sauteed_cabbage_and_zucchini Sauteed Cabbage and Zucchini<br> <br> <br>Ingredients:<br> <br>1 small head cabbage, chopped<br>1 small zucchini and yellow squash<br>Some onion<br>Some red and yellow pepper<br>Some collard greens<br>4 mushrooms<br>3 broccoli stems<br>1 tbsp onion powder<br>1 tbsp garli... Tue, 31 May 2016 01:12:00 EST Yummy Cole Slaw http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46225_yummy_cole_slaw Cole Slaw <br> <img src="http://photosaws.sparkpeople.com/guid/d40c35dc-8453-470d-9d9e-1c3553416bac.jpg"> <br> <br>1/2 cup Mayonnaise <br> ... Sat, 28 May 2016 22:36:00 EST Hot Carrot Dog http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46212_hot_carrot_dog Carrot Dog<br><br>So it the time of year when you really want to bite into a yummy hot dog, bun and dripping in ketchup and mayonnaise...Wait, I'm a vegetarian and have you seen the ingredients list on the veggies dogs...yikes<br><br>But a carrot...really...so I'm trying this out..<br><br>Ingredients: <br> <br>2 Carrots<br>2 Buns<br>1/4 Cup Vinegar<br>1/4 Cup Wat... Sat, 28 May 2016 01:25:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46192_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Fri, 27 May 2016 00:24:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46170_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Thu, 26 May 2016 00:24:00 EST Upgrade your Smoothie http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46136_upgrade_your_smoothie When you need breakfast or a snack and you need it fast, it doesn't get much easier than smoothies. There is no quicker way to get your daily serving of fruit (and these days, even a dose of vegetables) into your body. along with tons of antioxidants and other nutrients. And you won't find any smoothies healthier than the ones you make at home. Many smoothie purveyors blend frozen yogurt, sherbet, and even ice cream into their smoothies. With all that extra sugar, you might as well call them ... Tue, 24 May 2016 06:22:00 EST Hummus Made Easy http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46128_hummus_made_easy very delicious!<br>NEW! BUSH'S CLASSIC HUMMUS MADE EASY (the perfect mix of olive oil, tahini, garlic, and lemon juice) <br>As a bean company, we learned how to make hummus the old-fashioned way: with simple ingredients and absolutely no artificial preservatives. BUSH'S® Classic Hummus Made Easy contains only eight simple ingredients, including tahini and olive oil. Of course, it's gluten-free.<br>More hummus recipes and information www.bushbeans.com/en_US/product/classic-hu<BR>mmus-made-eas... Mon, 23 May 2016 15:12:00 EST Lentil Veggie Salad http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46115_lentil_veggie_salad Lentil Veggie Salad<br> <br>This lentil salad has come along way from the mostly cheese and little veggies to no cheese and lots of veggies.<br> <br> <img src="http://photosaws.sparkpeople.com/guid/6063a523-c02b-4b43-b26b-2c935de5434c.JPG"><br> <br>Ingredients:<br> ... Mon, 23 May 2016 01:17:00 EST Spice it up http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46106_spice_it_up Sodium or salt is a big no-no for overweight people or people that have certain illnesses like high blood pressure. I fit both categories. Have you ever noticed just how much salt is in those box meals you buy? Wow! Some of them have more sodium than we are supposed to eat in a whole day! So I have started cooking from scratch. No more box meals, I gave them all away.<br>This only helped with part of the salt issue. Have you ever looked at your spice mixes? For example you have celery salt, g... Sun, 22 May 2016 16:59:00 EST COKING EVERY DAY http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46079_coking_every_day I have been dealing with weight issues since I was about five or six years old. I have done lots of diets, exercise, and even a medical fast. I have had many levels of success and failure over the years. However, now I believe that I have a grasp on what I need to do to be successful. I have a compulsive eating disorder. I have to remain very structured in what I do every day. I am not somebody who can just come into work when there are doughnuts, have one and be fine about it. I have to be v... Sat, 21 May 2016 03:27:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46078_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Sat, 21 May 2016 00:32:00 EST Home Cooking Chef http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46062_home_cooking_chef How to Ditch the Excuses and Learn to Cook<br><br>The first step in building a sustainable cooking habit is to address your challenges head on and come up with rational solutions. Here are some of the most common reasons people say they can't cook, and tips to overcome each one.<br><br>The Excuse: I Don't Have Time<br>This popular excuse is pretty powerful, and we use this rationale to avoid much more than cooking. To overcome this block, the most important thing that’s needed is a shift in m... Fri, 20 May 2016 12:43:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46057_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Fri, 20 May 2016 00:23:00 EST Healthy Grilled Eggplant Recipe http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=46010_healthy_grilled_eggplant_recipe Healthy Grilled Eggplant Recipe<br><br> Eggplant is a popular part of Indian, Middle Eastern, and Chinese cuisines, but in the US the average American eats less than one pound per year.1 They are, perhaps, the least popular member of the Solanaceae family, which includes tomatoes, pepper, and potatoes, as well as some poisonous plants like Deadly Nightshade.<br><br> For centuries, in fact, especially in Europe, eggplant was regarded as a bitter plant more suited for decorating the garden t... Tue, 17 May 2016 13:34:00 EST If you like volume and very hungry making a big pot of vegetable soup can be the trick to feeling satisfied and tame that gnawing hunger feeling. http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45987_if_you_like_volume_and_very_hungry_making_a_big_pot_of_vegetable_soup_can_be_the_trick_to_feeling_satisfied_and_tame_that_gnawing_hunger_feeling NUTRITION INFORMATION Per Cup<br>100 calorie serving = 2 1/4 cups. <br><br>Try many varieties of the Weight Watchers Garden Vegetable Soup.<br><br>My version:<br>6 cup non-fat beef broth from ready made low sodium boxes. <br>3 cups green cabbage, shredded (you can use preshredded cole slaw package)<br>1 1⁄3 cups carrots, sliced<br>1 cup onion, diced<br>4 garlic cloves, minced<br>1 cup ,cleaned tips, green beans, cut in half or thirds depending on their size<br>2 Ttomato paste<br>3 stalks ce... Mon, 16 May 2016 09:40:00 EST Healthy Cooking 101 http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45981_healthy_cooking_101 News flash: There are plenty of ways to cook up juicy and flavorful food without adding tons of unnecessary extras. While most people know to ditch the fryer when cooking up healthy meals, many don’t think about how their cooking method affects the nutritional make-up of their entrée.<br><br>Heat can break down and destroy 15 to 20 percent of some vitamins in vegetables — especially vitamin C, folate, and potassium. And as you’ll see below, some methods are more detrimental than others. (This... Mon, 16 May 2016 06:35:00 EST Cook and try all new ideas.. http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45947_cook_and_try_all_new_ideas Everyone wants to cut fat from their diets. Even if we don't care about shedding pounds, we are aware that a low-fat diet is healthful. But it's not easy to eliminate fat.....Well let's look at this...First, don't try to eliminate fat..... Healthy adults and children can handle diets that are 20 to 30 percent fat.... Fat contributes to flavor, texture, and a sense of satisfaction. If you're not satisfied, you might overeat... You can control the food and the cooking techniques and the food su... Sat, 14 May 2016 11:43:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45944_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Sat, 14 May 2016 07:59:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45925_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Fri, 13 May 2016 00:26:00 EST NEED TO COOK MORE http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45890_need_to_cook_more I have been dealing with weight issues since I was about five or six years old. I have done lots of diets, exercise, and even a medical fast. I have had many levels of success and failure over the years. However, now I believe that I have a grasp on what I need to do to be successful. I have a compulsive eating disorder. I have to remain very structured in what I do every day. I am not somebody who can just come into work when there are doughnuts, have one and be fine about it. I have to be v... Wed, 11 May 2016 09:06:00 EST The Green Soup http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45846_the_green_soup Green Soup<br> <br>Ingredients:<br> <br>Some red onion<br>Clove garlic<br>Some ginger<br>1 to 2 heads of broccoli<br>1 to 2 cup cauliflower<br>6 kale leaves (and the stems)<br>1-2 zucchini and yellow squash<br>2 sticks of celery<br>1/2 cup pinto beans<br>4 to 6 cups of veggie broth (I used my homemade veggie broth)<br>1 cup kale stems<br>Handful of parsley<br... Sun, 8 May 2016 22:35:00 EST The Borscht Soup http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45830_the_borscht_soup Borscht<br><br>3 shredded beets<br>1 diced up potatoes<br>10 baby carrots shredded carrots<br>1 diced onion<br>1 c. chopped celery<br>1-2 tsp. lemon juice<br>1 c. broccoli<br>1 c. cauliflower<br>I can green beans<br>1 big can stewed tomatoes<br>1c. pinto beans<br>1 handful of dill<br>1 cup kale and beet stems<br>4 kale leaves<br>6 cups of veggie broth (I used my homemade veggie broth)<br>1/4 teaspoon (or more) of onion powder, garlic powder, spike, Ms. Dash, paprika, pepper, seasoned salt, ba... Sat, 7 May 2016 18:12:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45821_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Sat, 7 May 2016 06:06:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45802_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Fri, 6 May 2016 05:37:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45701_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Sat, 30 Apr 2016 00:27:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45686_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Fri, 29 Apr 2016 00:30:00 EST Rise & Shine Baked Avocado http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45677_rise_shine_baked_avocado <br>If you’re looking for a healthy breakfast, you’ll want to bypass much of the traditional fare in the US. Cereal, bagels, pancakes, waffles, muffins, and doughnuts all have one thing in common…<br>They’re refined carbohydrates that will quickly break down to sugar, increase your insulin levels, and cause insulin resistance, which is the number one underlying factor of nearly every chronic disease and condition known to man, including weight gain.<br>Highly processed carbohydrates stimulate... Thu, 28 Apr 2016 12:59:00 EST PREPPING IS KEY http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45670_prepping_is_key I have been dealing with weight issues since I was about five or six years old. I have done lots of diets, exercise, and even a medical fast. I have had many levels of success and failure over the years. However, now I believe that I have a grasp on what I need to do to be successful. I have a compulsive eating disorder. I have to remain very structured in what I do every day. I am not somebody who can just come into work when there are doughnuts, have one and be fine about it. I have to be v... Thu, 28 Apr 2016 09:01:00 EST Stop Being Such Putz.. Get on the Ball http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45663_stop_being_such_putz_get_on_the_ball Put down that frying pan there is a new Sheriff in town and I am going to tell you a few things on cooking.. I have been cooking since I was knee high to a grasshopper... and could hold a fork and spoon.. I am from the South so this healthy way of cooking was a new idea... So I took a chance and I had to slap my knee and admit there are things and ways to cut the frying out and a new way of cooking that I needed to know... Making something other than pasta or a frozen pizza doesn't have to be... Wed, 27 Apr 2016 14:44:00 EST Keep It Lean: How to Cook Meat and Fish http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45661_keep_it_lean_how_to_cook_meat_and_fish Keep It Lean: How to Cook Meat and Fish<br><br>You've got your meat or fish and you're ready to cook a healthy meal. Do you know which cooking techniques will maximize flavor and minimize fat?<br><br>Buying skinless chicken breasts to cut back on fat makes sense; breading and deep-frying them does not. Fortunately, you don’t have to fry — many cooking techniques seal in flavor while keeping out extra fat and calories.<br><br>These easy tips will keep unwanted fat and calories out of your meat... Wed, 27 Apr 2016 12:43:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45565_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Fri, 22 Apr 2016 09:15:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45550_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Thu, 21 Apr 2016 09:32:00 EST Making your own seasoning salt which cuts the salt by 2/3 of regular seasoning salt. http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45489_making_your_own_seasoning_salt_which_cuts_the_salt_by_23_of_regular_seasoning_salt I buy one container of seasoning salt and the same size container of onion powder and the same size garlic powder and 2 tablespoons of No Salt salt free alternative and 4-6 tablespoons of paprika, plus whatever spices you would like. I add 4 tables of curry to half and 4 tablespoons of cumin to the other half. This depends on taste and will require a little experimenting to get the taste the way you want it. You put all the ingredients into a good size bowl with a lid and shake it for at l... Mon, 18 Apr 2016 07:19:00 EST Cooking and Freezing Meals http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45477_cooking_and_freezing_meals I've been selecting Spark Recipes and cooking and freezing in one meal portions, It's been a life saver. <br><br>I spend one day a week and make 3 recipes. Then I divide the portions and freeze in individual servings. If I am serving the same meal to my husband, I simply defrost 2 portions. <br><br>Sometimes dieting makes it seem as if you think about food all the time. I never felt that was a good thing and I believe it's caused me to veer off plan to easily in the past. It's great to be abl... Sun, 17 Apr 2016 12:15:00 EST How to avoid inadvertently poisoning your food when making home-cooked meals http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45473_how_to_avoid_inadvertently_poisoning_your_food_when_making_homecooked_meals How to avoid inadvertently poisoning your food when making home-cooked meals<br><br>(NaturalNews) When it comes to cooking at home, most health-conscious folks would probably say that their aim is to prepare wholesome, savory meals in the cleanest way possible for their families. However, unless these foods are cooked properly at the right temperatures and for the appropriate lengths of time, they could still be harmful to your health even if they are organic.<br><br>In addition to the more o... Sun, 17 Apr 2016 09:19:00 EST How to avoid inadvertently poisoning your food when making home-cooked meals http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45472_how_to_avoid_inadvertently_poisoning_your_food_when_making_homecooked_meals How to avoid inadvertently poisoning your food when making home-cooked meals<br><br>(NaturalNews) When it comes to cooking at home, most health-conscious folks would probably say that their aim is to prepare wholesome, savory meals in the cleanest way possible for their families. However, unless these foods are cooked properly at the right temperatures and for the appropriate lengths of time, they could still be harmful to your health even if they are organic.<br><br>In addition to the more o... Sun, 17 Apr 2016 09:19:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45454_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Sat, 16 Apr 2016 09:22:00 EST COOKING IS KEY http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45453_cooking_is_key I have been dealing with weight issues since I was about five or six years old. I have done lots of diets, exercise, and even a medical fast. I have had many levels of success and failure over the years. However, now I believe that I have a grasp on what I need to do to be successful. I have a compulsive eating disorder. I have to remain very structured in what I do every day. I am not somebody who can just come into work when there are doughnuts, have one and be fine about it. I have to be v... Sat, 16 Apr 2016 01:14:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45434_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Fri, 15 Apr 2016 01:12:00 EST Heart-Healthy Cooking Tips http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45430_hearthealthy_cooking_tips To lower your risk of heart disease or to manage your existing disease, try these tips in preparing meals.<br><br>Limit Saturated and Trans Fat<br><br>* Select lean cuts of beef and pork, especially cuts with "loin" or "round" in their name.<br>* Cut back on processed meats high in saturated fat, such as hot dogs, salami and bacon.<br>* Bake, broil, roast, stew or stir-fry lean meats, fish or poultry.<br>* Drain the fat off of cooked, ground meat.<br>* When you make a stew or soup, refrigerat... Thu, 14 Apr 2016 22:05:00 EST Tips for Healthier Cooking http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45355_tips_for_healthier_cooking Choosing healthy foods is an important part of eating right, but cooking them in a healthful way is another huge part. For example, zucchini can take on two completely different forms when it's quickly sautéed in olive oil versus battered and deep fried. What we add to foods makes all the difference when it comes to home cooking.<br><br>The first step to healthier cooking is to take recipes as suggestions. Before you start chopping and mixing, scan the recipe to see if there are any unnecessa... Sun, 10 Apr 2016 19:46:00 EST Eat this and that.... Better way to eating http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45352_eat_this_and_that_better_way_to_eating You do not have to have a lot of fat in cooking cause there is so many more ways to do it..Food doesn’t have to be high in fat to be good... get the whole family to help slice, dice, and chop, and learn how to cut fat and calories in some foods. You’d be surprised how easy heart healthy cooking and snacking can be....Make a few changes in the kitchen and you'll be eating healthy in no time...Instead of frying, try baking, broiling, boiling, or microwaving....Choose fat-free or low-fat milk pr... Sun, 10 Apr 2016 16:34:00 EST Healthy Cooking With Kids http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45329_healthy_cooking_with_kids Healthy Cooking With Kids<br><br>Raising healthy children goes beyond serving nutritious meals. Cooking with kids will help them develop lifelong good eating habits — and you'll both have fun, too.<br><br>Healthy foods help kids grow fit and strong. And cooking with your kids gives you the chance to introduce them to food groups and emphasize healthier choices like fruits and vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy, lean meat, and seafood. Kids who help pick and prepare foods are more likely ... Sat, 9 Apr 2016 10:59:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45327_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Sat, 9 Apr 2016 10:01:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45307_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Fri, 8 Apr 2016 08:32:00 EST Keep It Lean: How to Cook Meat and Fish http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45301_keep_it_lean_how_to_cook_meat_and_fish <br>Keep It Lean: How to Cook Meat and Fish<br><br>You've got your meat or fish and you're ready to cook a healthy meal. Do you know which cooking techniques will maximize flavor and minimize fat?<br><br><br>Buying skinless chicken breasts to cut back on fat makes sense; breading and deep-frying them does not. Fortunately, you don’t have to fry — many cooking techniques seal in flavor while keeping out extra fat and calories.<br><br>These easy tips will keep unwanted fat and calories out of y... Thu, 7 Apr 2016 11:42:00 EST PREPPING FOOD FOR A WEEK http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45257_prepping_food_for_a_week I have been dealing with weight issues since I was about five or six years old. I have done lots of diets, exercise, and even a medical fast. I have had many levels of success and failure over the years. However, now I believe that I have a grasp on what I need to do to be successful. I have a compulsive eating disorder. I have to remain very structured in what I do every day. I am not somebody who can just come into work when there are doughnuts, have one and be fine about it. I have to be v... Mon, 4 Apr 2016 14:10:00 EST optomistic all the time http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45256_optomistic_all_the_time keep your attitude positive ... be optimistic ... always keep smiling and laughing... be friendly even when you don't feel that way... loses weight and keep your strength work out with others never allow depression to take over never let depression eat few fat and carbs eat lots of protein use probiotics take proper vitamins ... follow your doctor and nurses advice...drink plenty of water and fruit juice. there isn't much more to add except that strength training is important but yoga and bal... Mon, 4 Apr 2016 12:01:00 EST Healthy Recipes With Whole Grains http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45255_healthy_recipes_with_whole_grains Healthy Recipes With Whole Grains<br><br>There's a whole heap of reasons that whole grains are good for you. Here's how to get more of them into your healthy recipes.<br><br>Whole grains are an important part of any healthful diet. A diet that contains plenty of whole grains can help reduce your risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and constipation, and can also help you maintain a healthy weight. As you search for healthy recipes for you and your family, you should look for those that inc... Mon, 4 Apr 2016 11:15:00 EST 10 Expert Tips for Making Healthier Sauces and Dressings http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45240_10_expert_tips_for_making_healthier_sauces_and_dressings 10 Expert Tips for Making Healthier Sauces and Dressings<br><br>Toss the store-bought bottles and top your foods with homemade versions of your favorite sauces and dressings instead.<br><br>Flavorful salad dressings and sauces can bring healthy meals to a whole new level — they make vegetables, lean meats, whole-grain pastas, and salads taste even better. And since store-bought products can be loaded with fat, calories, and sodium, learning to make your own sauces and salad dressings is an im... Sun, 3 Apr 2016 13:20:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45216_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Sat, 2 Apr 2016 00:45:00 EST Top 5 Healthy Grilling Recipes http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45212_top_5_healthy_grilling_recipes Top 5 Healthy Grilling Recipes<br>Summer grilling doesn't have to mean calorie-laden outdoor feasts. Try these five delicious — and healthy - grilling recipes. You can even grill dessert!<br><br><br>Plank-Grilled Sweet Soy Salmon<br><br>Prep Time: 10 mins<br>Cook Time: 17 mins<br>Rest Time: 2 h<br>Total Time: 2 h 27 mins<br><br>Ingredients<br><br>1/4 cup soy sauce, reduced sodium<br>1/4 cup wine, rice, sake, or dry white wine<br>1/4 cup mirin (sweet rice wine)<br>2 tablespoons sugar<br>3 tabl... Fri, 1 Apr 2016 13:47:00 EST Choose the Right Cooking Oils http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45211_choose_the_right_cooking_oils Choose the Right Cooking Oils — for Great Taste and Nutrition<br><br>Before you reach for that stick of butter when sautéing veggies, consider a healthier alternative. Cooking oil, a tasty addition to many dishes, can be healthier than butter and other solid fats and add flavor. With so many vegetable oil and nut oil flavors to choose from, you'll never run out of healthy cooking options.<br><br>Choosing Nutritious Oils<br>Most liquid cooking oil is a better option than butter or margarine, b... Fri, 1 Apr 2016 13:42:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45204_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Fri, 1 Apr 2016 09:59:00 EST Spice Up Your Cooking With Herbs http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45195_spice_up_your_cooking_with_herbs Spice Up Your Cooking With Herbs<br><br>No one wants to eat bland food, but ladling on sauces and gravies just adds excess fat and calories to your diet. Fortunately, calorie-free herbs add flavor without all that extra baggage, and they’re easy to use.<br><br>Herbs are edible, fragrant plants that add flavor and nutrients to many types of foods. By playing with herbal variations in your recipes, you can get a completely different taste every time you cook. Stock up on dried or fresh herbs at... Thu, 31 Mar 2016 12:35:00 EST 5 Simple Steps to a Healthy Pasta Dinner http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45194_5_simple_steps_to_a_healthy_pasta_dinner 5 Simple Steps to a Healthy Pasta Dinner<br><br>Key Takeaways<br>Check the pasta label: whole-wheat flour should be listed as the first ingredient.<br><br>An easy way to enjoy noodles, while keeping calories in check, is to use vegetables to bulk up your bowl.<br><br>Be smart with sauce — jarred varieties should have no more than 75 calories and 150 milligrams of sodium per serving.<br><br>Whether you're trying to lose weight or just eat healthfully, pasta tends to be seen as "off-limits". Bu... Thu, 31 Mar 2016 12:27:00 EST Healthy Cooking With Fruits and Vegetables http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45177_healthy_cooking_with_fruits_and_vegetables Healthy Cooking With Fruits and Vegetables<br><br>Your first rule of thumb when buying produce is to make sure it's fresh. Next, avoid any fruits or vegetables with blemishes, cuts, bruises, or other soft spots. Any cut fruits or vegetables should be sold from refrigerated displays in your market.<br><br>Fruit will ripen at room temperature. Most vegetables and already ripe fruit should be refrigerated to stop the ripening process and prevent spoiling. Wash produce under cool running water be... Wed, 30 Mar 2016 12:59:00 EST HEALTHY RECIPES ARTICLE http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45156_healthy_recipes_article <br>HEALTHY RECIPES<br>.<br>There are sound nutritional reasons to include meat in your diet; healthy meat is a terrific source of protein, vitamins, and minerals. But beware: Some meats are heavy in unhealthy saturated fat and cholesterol. By choosing the leaner cuts and cooking meat in healthful ways, you can make the most of your meat dishes.<br><br>Meat: A Nutrition Powerhouse<br><br>Foods in the meat group go beyond red meats like beef and lamb — they also include poultry, pork, fish, an... Tue, 29 Mar 2016 12:54:00 EST I discovered a crockpot... http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45132_i_discovered_a_crockpot No, I did not just find out what a crockpot is, I have had several for years that I utilize on special occasions; i.e., holidays or potlucks at work when I have to bring the meatballs. I just discovered that it can make everyday cooking a lot quicker and easier. This weekend I put an entire roast with the potatoes, carrots and onions in the crockpot with a little water and seasonings and it make a delicious meal overnight without out the stress of having to prepare the entire Easter dinner ... Mon, 28 Mar 2016 09:52:00 EST Creamy Celeriac Soup http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45128_creamy_celeriac_soup Creamy Celeriac Soup<br><br> <em>284</em> <em>369</em> <em>284</em> <em>369</em> <em>284</em> <em>369</em> <em>284</em> <br> <br>Ingredients <br>1 large celery root <br>1 cup chopped celery <br>1 can beans <br>Some red onion, green onion and a little leek <br>1 teaspoon garlic powder <br>1 teaspoon o... Sun, 27 Mar 2016 21:41:00 EST Veggie Chili #3 http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45118_veggie_chili_3 Veggie Chili #3<br><br>Ingredients: <br> <br>1/2 cup onion (red, green, spring and leek) <br>2-3 carrots (orange, purple and yellow) <br>1 cup swiss chard stems <br>1/2 red and green pepper (or more) <br>1/2 cup eggplant <br>1/2 cup golden beets <br>2 stalks of celery <br>A bunch of red, yellow, green, orange peppers <br>Big pile of chopped up greens <br>1/2 cup of water or veggie broth <br>1 can of tomato sauce (or paste) <br>3 cans of beans (I used 1 can Red Kidney and 2 can Pint... Sat, 26 Mar 2016 23:06:00 EST Veggie Chili #2 http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45102_veggie_chili_2 Veggie Chili #2<br> <br>Ingredients: <br> <br>1/2 cup onion <br>2-3 carrots <br>1 cup bok choy <br>1/2 red and green pepper (or more) <br>1/2 cup mushrooms chopped <br>big pile of chopped up greens <br>1/2 cup of water or veggie broth <br>1 small can of tomato sauce (or paste) <br>2 cans of beans (I used Red Kidney and Pinto) <br>1 can of p... Fri, 25 Mar 2016 20:33:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45089_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Fri, 25 Mar 2016 00:32:00 EST Veggie Chili #1 http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45088_veggie_chili_1 Veggie Chili #1<br> <br>Ingredients: <br> <br>1/2 cup onion<br>2-3 carrots<br>1/2 red and green pepper (or more)<br>1/2 cup mushrooms chopped<br>big pile of chopped up greens<br>1/2 cup of water or veggie broth<br>1 small can of tomato sauce (or paste)<br>2 cans of beans(I used Red Kidney and Pinto)<br>1 can... Thu, 24 Mar 2016 22:42:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45072_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Thu, 24 Mar 2016 06:28:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45008_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Sun, 20 Mar 2016 10:06:00 EST Sauteed and Steamed Veggies along with Baked Sweet Potatoes and Butternut Squash http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=45006_sauteed_and_steamed_veggies_along_with_baked_sweet_potatoes_and_butternut_squash Sauteed and Steamed Veggies along with Baked Sweet Potatoes and Butternut Squash<br><br>1/2 cup zucchini and summer squash <br>1/2 cup red, green onion and leeks <br>1/2 cup cabbage and bok choy <br>1 cup mushroom <br>1 cup eggplant <br>2 cups kale <br>1 can kidney beans <br>1 can green beans <br><br>First I sauteed the mushrooms and eggplant in one pan and the zucchini, summer squash, red, green onion, leeks, cabbage and bok choy in another pan and sauteed for around 5-10 minutes. Then ... Sat, 19 Mar 2016 21:41:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44992_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Sat, 19 Mar 2016 02:14:00 EST Green Bean Casserole http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44987_green_bean_casserole Green Bean Casserole... <br> <br>That won't kill you...have you ever seen the ingredients in mushroom soup, the sodium alone might kill you, so here is what I came up with...<br> <br>2 cans no salt green beans<br>Bunch of sauteed mushrooms<br>White Gravy (recipe below)<br>Some crunchy onions<br> ... Fri, 18 Mar 2016 20:59:00 EST Pumpkin Butternut Squash Soup http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44973_pumpkin_butternut_squash_soup Pumpkin Butternut Squash Soup<br><br>I had a whole bunch of frozen butternut squash that I was going to make several different soups out of, well ends up that I cooked the squash but didn't have time make the soup so I threw it in the freezer. <br> <br> <img src="http://photosaws.sparkpeople.com/guid/2f7bd024-82ec-4277-89d4-2edc5ac05afa.jpg"><br> <br>Ingredients: <br> <br>butternut squash <br>1 can pumpkin<br>1 can pinto beans<br>red and green onion <br>leek<br>red pepper<br>cabbage<br... Fri, 18 Mar 2016 00:41:00 EST Adding Fiber Secretly! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44955_adding_fiber_secretly When making Tuna Salad, I pour the water from the can into a bowl. I add Quick Cook Rolled Oats to the water and let it sit for about 15 minutes, until all the water is absorbed. Use half the amount of rolled oats as you have water. After 15 minutes, add the rolled oats to your tuna. The oats take up the color of the water and the taste of the tuna! I make my tuna salad like this all the time and no one can ever tell! It should also work if you are using canned chicken in water.<br><br>Rolle... Thu, 17 Mar 2016 00:30:00 EST I made a Clean out the Freezer Stir Fry #2 http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44952_i_made_a_clean_out_the_freezer_stir_fry_2 I made a Clean out the Freezer Stir Fry #2...while baking sweet potatoes, mushrooms and eggplant <br> <br> <em>258</em> <em>485</em> <em>267</em> <em>284</em> <em>69</em> <em>291</em> <em>369</em> <em>371</em> <br> <br>You know its time to use what you have in the freezer when you open the freezer and stuff comes flying out. So I found these veggies (used a little of each): <br><br>Celery <br>Green and red onion<br>Leek <br>Red pepper<br>Red and g... Wed, 16 Mar 2016 20:12:00 EST Cooking at your finest... http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44938_cooking_at_your_finest We need a balanced diet full of vegetables, fruit, whole grains and legumes, nuts, dairy, poultry, fish and meat.... and then take up ways to cook a better way besides frying... Being from the South we fried everything and lard plus bacon grease kept in a can or jar... Wow I did these things and never thought of what I was doing.. We all tend to follow the way we see our family cook.. We now need to learn how to balance our foods and a new way of cooking... Each and every one of us are diffe... Wed, 16 Mar 2016 11:08:00 EST Sweetly Sour Veggies http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44931_sweetly_sour_veggies I made this and it taste really good so try in out and see if you like:<br> <br>Sweetly Sour Veggies<br> <br>1/2 small head cauliflower cut into small pieces <br>1 stalk broccoli cut into small pieces<br>1-2 carrots cut into small pieces<br>A bunch of spinach, kale (or any greens) torn up into small pieces<br>1/2 red pepper (or any other pe... Tue, 15 Mar 2016 22:54:00 EST Easy fiber, protein soup! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44927_easy_fiber_protein_soup Do you ever have left over chicken breast from making another meal? How about you needed to stew boneless, skinless chicken breast for some other recipe like chicken enchiladas or something like that? <br>Well, what do you do with all of that left over broth and strings of chicken? How about a fiber rich, low fat chicken and endive soup?<br>Yep, that is what I do when I have leftover chicken breast especially with all that broth that would otherwise be thrown away! <br>So to start, I put ... Tue, 15 Mar 2016 18:50:00 EST "Clean out the Freezer" Stir Fry http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44899_clean_out_the_freezer_stir_fry I made a "Clean out the Freezer" Stir Fry<br> <br>You know its time to use what you have in the freezer when you open the freezer and stuff comes flying out. So I found these veggies (used a little of each):<br> <br>Celery<br> <br>Green and red onion<br> ... Mon, 14 Mar 2016 01:51:00 EST Raw Marinara Sauce http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44897_raw_marinara_sauce Raw Marinara Sauce <br> <br><br>Tomatoes Red Pepper <br> ... Sun, 13 Mar 2016 23:45:00 EST PREPPING FOR THE WEEK http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44895_prepping_for_the_week I have been dealing with weight issues since I was about five or six years old. I have done lots of diets, exercise, and even a medical fast. I have had many levels of success and failure over the years. However, now I believe that I have a grasp on what I need to do to be successful. I have a compulsive eating disorder. I have to remain very structured in what I do every day. I am not somebody who can just come into work when there are doughnuts, have one and be fine about it. I have to be v... Sun, 13 Mar 2016 21:27:00 EST No dishwasher diet! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44893_no_dishwasher_diet First, I am not so in love with work that I MAKE it for myself. But, living without a dishwasher has changed my approach to food prep. Cooking all my food for the week and then storing it by meals, makes it easy and quick for me to stay on target and make good choices! If I know enchiladas and salad are waiting on me, I won't stop for pizza on the way home...<br><br>Sunday afternoon, after planning my weekly menus, I cook, wash, and prepare every bite for the next five days. I think about our... Sun, 13 Mar 2016 19:18:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44884_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Sun, 13 Mar 2016 09:44:00 EST Cous Cous and Veggies http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44879_cous_cous_and_veggies Cous Cous and Veggies <br> <br>1/2 cup dry Cous Cous (soak for a couple of hours) <br>1/2 can Black Beans <br> <br>Veggies: <br>Red onion, Green on... Sat, 12 Mar 2016 19:40:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44865_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Sat, 12 Mar 2016 06:36:00 EST COOKING IS CRUCIAL http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44863_cooking_is_crucial I have been dealing with weight issues since I was about five or six years old. I have done lots of diets, exercise, and even a medical fast. I have had many levels of success and failure over the years. However, now I believe that I have a grasp on what I need to do to be successful. I have a compulsive eating disorder. I have to remain very structured in what I do every day. I am not somebody who can just come into work when there are doughnuts, have one and be fine about it. I have to be v... Sat, 12 Mar 2016 03:05:00 EST Mujadara: Lentils and Veggies http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44859_mujadara_lentils_and_veggies Mujadara: Lentils and Veggies<br> <br>1 Cup Lentils<br>1/2 Cup Cabbage<br>1/2 Cup Red Pepper<br>1/2 Cup Mushrooms<br>1/2 Cup Eggplant<br>1/2 Cup Spinach<br>1/2 Onions<br>1 to 1 1/2 Cups Veggie Broth (water)<br>1 Teaspoon Cumin<br>1 Teaspoon Salt<br>1/2 Teaspoon Pepper<br>1 to 2 Tablespoons oil<br>Spices<br> <br>Directions:<br>Dice the onions into sma... Fri, 11 Mar 2016 20:59:00 EST Chocolate-Chocolate Chip Cookies http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44843_chocolatechocolate_chip_cookies Chocolate-Chocolate Chip Cookies <br><br>Ingredients: <br>3/4 cup whole-wheat flour <br>1/2 cup sugar <br>6 tbsp. unsweetened applesauce <br>1/4 cup canned pure pumpkin <br>1/4 cup flax seed meal and water (let set for a while) <br>2 1/2 tbsp. mini semi-sweet chocolate chips<br>2 tbsp. brown sugar, not packed <br>3/4 tsp. vanilla extract <br>1/4 tsp. baking soda <br>1/8 tsp. salt <br>6 tbsp. cocoa<br><br>Directions: <br>Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a mixing bowl, combine all dry ingredien... Thu, 10 Mar 2016 21:36:00 EST Spinach and Red Pepper Hummus http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44822_spinach_and_red_pepper_hummus Spinach and Red Pepper Hummus <br> <br>1 Can Chick Peas <br> <br>Bunch of Spinach <br> <br>1/2 Can Roasted Red Pepper <br> ... Wed, 9 Mar 2016 21:40:00 EST Sauteed Veggies and Beans http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44807_sauteed_veggies_and_beans Sauteed Veggies and Beans<br><br>Ingredients: <br><br>Some water<br> <br>Various types of veggies: <br>broccoli, cauliflower, asparagus, peas, snow peas, peas in a pod, carrots, eggplant, tomatoes, artichokes, red pepper, green beans, corn, mushrooms, zucchini, spinach, kale, bok choy, swiss chard, collard greens, ect. (I just use a combination of what I have, it’s a great way to use up what you h... Wed, 9 Mar 2016 00:44:00 EST Spanish Rice and Enchiladas http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44788_spanish_rice_and_enchiladas Spanish Rice and Enchiladas <br><br>Ingredients: <br><br>1/2 cup dry brown rice<br>1 cup of water<br>3 cans of tomato sauce<br>1/2 to 1 cup hot sauce<br>Corn tortillas<br>Vegan cheese<br>1 can refried beans (or black beans) with some spices<br>Onion<br>Green and red pepper<br>Mushrooms<br>Spinach <br>Tomatoes <br>Spices<br><br>Directions: <br><br>Boil the brown rice in a cup of water(more if y... Mon, 7 Mar 2016 22:03:00 EST Tomato Veggie Gazpacho http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44766_tomato_veggie_gazpacho Tomato Veggie Gazpacho<br> <br> <img src="http://photosaws.sparkpeople.com/guid/4ac13126-5e9c-47ae-ba17-1396b23d6d92.jpg"> <br>Ingredients: <br> <br>4 ripe roma tomatoes <br> <br>5-6 sun-dried tomatoes (... Sun, 6 Mar 2016 20:55:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44754_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Sun, 6 Mar 2016 07:57:00 EST Sweet Potato hashbrowns http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44750_sweet_potato_hashbrowns Sweet Potato hashbrowns<br> <br>1 sweet potato<br> <br>4 mushrooms<br> <br>1/2 cup onion<br><br>1/2 red pepper (any color pepper would work)<br> ... Sat, 5 Mar 2016 19:04:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44740_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Sat, 5 Mar 2016 07:39:00 EST The Lentil Salad http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44734_the_lentil_salad Lentil Salad <br> <br>When I first made this I did not put in all the veggies (just lettuce, hominy and beets) and I used alot of cheese so now I put in many veggies and little cheese.<br> <br>Ingredients:<br> <br>Lentils <br> ... Fri, 4 Mar 2016 14:53:00 EST That is a Lot of Veggies Soup http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44707_that_is_a_lot_of_veggies_soup That is a Lot of Veggies Soup <br><br>Ingredients <br>1 tablespoon of oil, broth or water <br>1-2 onions (red, white, yellow)<br>1 cup chopped pepper (red, yellow, green) <br>1 cup chopped celery <br>1/2 cup bok choy <br>I cup carrot pulp <br>2-4 cups cabbage and greens (turnip and collard greens) <br>1 small diced yellow squash <br>5 mushrooms, chopped<br>3 potatoes, diced <br>1 cup broccoli<br>1 cup cauliflower<br>1/2 cup diced eggplant <br>1 can green beans... Thu, 3 Mar 2016 08:41:00 EST 8 Minute Split Pea Soup http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44703_8_minute_split_pea_soup 8 Minute Split Pea Soup<br> <br>Ingredients<br> <br> <br>one pound of green split peas<br><br>one large chopped onion one pound carrots, sliced<br> <br>One celery heart, sliced<br> ... Wed, 2 Mar 2016 23:31:00 EST Vegan Taco Soup http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44685_vegan_taco_soup Vegan Taco Soup<br> <br>Ingredients:<br> <br>Navy beans, red beans, black beans, chickpeas, white beans<br>crushed tomatoes<br>summer squash<br>corn<br>red and green pepper<br>onion<br>greens<br> taco seasoning<br>salt<br>pepper <br> small can of tomato sauce with some water<br> ... Wed, 2 Mar 2016 00:51:00 EST COOKING VERSUS EATING OUT http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44674_cooking_versus_eating_out I have been dealing with weight issues since I was about five or six years old. I have done lots of diets, exercise, and even a medical fast. I have had many levels of success and failure over the years. However, now I believe that I have a grasp on what I need to do to be successful. I have a compulsive eating disorder. I have to remain very structured in what I do every day. I am not somebody who can just come into work when there are doughnuts, have one and be fine about it. I have to be v... Tue, 1 Mar 2016 11:46:00 EST Spaghetti Noodles with Tomato Sauce http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44662_spaghetti_noodles_with_tomato_sauce Spaghetti Noodles with Tomato Sauce <br> <br>The sauce is tomato juice, tomato paste, garlic powder and some parmesan cheese.<br> <br> <br>or you can make this sauce:<br> <br>http://www.sparkpeople.com/m... Mon, 29 Feb 2016 19:23:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44632_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Sun, 28 Feb 2016 08:08:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44615_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Sat, 27 Feb 2016 07:48:00 EST Carrot Pulp Soup http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44592_carrot_pulp_soup Carrot Pulp Soup (When I juiced the carrots I used the pulp to make a soup)<br> <br> <br>Bunch of carrot pulp soup (it was a lot) <br> <br>Bunch of green pulp (I used maybe a cup) <br> <br>1 Cup white beans <br> <br>1/2 onion and... Thu, 25 Feb 2016 19:07:00 EST MEAL PREPPING FOR BEGINNERS (KEY) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44582_meal_prepping_for_beginners_key my life is back to super busy, as I'm sure all of you are experiencing as well! Whether you're a student, in the work field, or have a family of your own, the beginning of the year can be a bit stressful! Eliminate the stress and time factor of having to cook every single night by meal prepping! It saves you time in the kitchen and helps keep you on track with healthy eating! You can prep and plan for just dinners, lunch and dinner, or even all three meals of the day and snacks too! The ... Thu, 25 Feb 2016 09:44:00 EST Black Bean Corn Soup http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44575_black_bean_corn_soup Black Bean Corn Soup<br> <br>1 cup black beans (frozen)<br>1 can of salt free corn<br>1 can of salt free green beans<br>1 can of salt free diced tomatoes<br>1 cup broth<br>4-6 cups water<br>1/2 medium diced onion<br>1/4 green onion<br>2T leek and shallot (frozen)<br>2 cups brown rice (frozen)<br>1/2 cup asparagus, white asparagus, yellow squash (frozen)<br>1/2 cup fennel, bok choy and swiss chard (frozen)<br>6 brussel spr... Thu, 25 Feb 2016 00:31:00 EST Try new things http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44556_try_new_things ..........................................<BR>......................................<BR>......................................<BR>......................................<BR>......................................<BR>..................................................Try to find a new type of food or a new way to cook something at least once a week. Check out Spark recipes. The produce app is also a good place to go. There are so many fruits and vegetables that a lot of people aren't familiar wi... Tue, 23 Feb 2016 22:08:00 EST Pinto Beans and Barley Soup http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44552_pinto_beans_and_barley_soup Pinto Beans and Barley Soup <br><br>2 cups of pinto beans <br>1 cup barley <br>4-6 cups water <br>1 medium diced onion <br>1/2 cup asparagus <br>1/2 cup white asparagus <br>1 small diced yellow squash <br>1/2 cup bok choy <br>1/2 swiss chard <br>1/2 cup fennel<br>2-4 cups greens (I used dino kale)<br>5 mushrooms, chopped<br>1 cup broccoli<br>1/2 diced eggplant <br>1 can green beans <br>1 can diced tomatoes <br>1/4 teaspoon (or more) of onion powder, garlic powder, spike, M... Tue, 23 Feb 2016 12:40:00 EST people with secret http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44536_people_with_secret It's a secret!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!<BR>!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!<BR>!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!<BR>!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!<BR>!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!<BR>!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!<BR>!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!<BR>!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!<BR>!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!<BR>!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!<BR>!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!<BR>!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!... Mon, 22 Feb 2016 11:20:00 EST Kamut, Beans and Veggie Soup http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44530_kamut_beans_and_veggie_soup Kamut, Beans and Veggie Soup <br><br>1/2 bag speckled butter and purple hull beans (frozen)<br>1 cup kamut<br>1 cup broth<br>4-6 cups water<br>1/2 cup asparagus, white asparagus, yellow squash (frozen)<br>1/2 cup fennel, bok choy and swiss chard (frozen)<br>5 mushrooms, chopped<br>1/2 cup cauliflower and cabbage <br>1/2 diced eggplant and turnip <br>1/2 medium diced red onion<br>1/4 green onion<br>2 clove garlic<br>2T leek (frozen)<br>2-4 cups greens (I used kale and collard) (frozen)<br>1 ca... Mon, 22 Feb 2016 10:32:00 EST Black Bean Tacos http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44520_black_bean_tacos Black Bean Tacos<br> <br> Corn Tortillas <br><br>1 can black beans <br><br>1 can corn <br><br>Some red and orange pepper, cucumber, tomato, avocado<br><br>Hot sauce <br> <br>Spices <br><br>One slice of daiya cheese <br> <br>Spinach and lettuce <br> <br>I took the Corn Tortillas and heated them in a pan with a tiny amount butter (I used some fat free... Sun, 21 Feb 2016 17:16:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44513_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Sun, 21 Feb 2016 09:21:00 EST Warm Salad for the Winter http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44510_warm_salad_for_the_winter Warm Salad for the Winter<br><br>have you ever wanted to eat a salad but your tooo cold well try this...<br> <br>1/4 cup red onion, bok choy and leeks<br> <br>4 chopped up mushrooms<br> <br>1 cup cabbage<br> <br>1/2 teaspoon onion powder, Mrs. Dash<br> ... Sat, 20 Feb 2016 21:19:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44496_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Sat, 20 Feb 2016 01:13:00 EST I have these tortillas.... http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44493_i_have_these_tortillas I have these tortillas....<br> <br>To use up and I had some (Both frozen and fresh)...<br> <br>Brown rice<br>Tomato sauce with hot sauce<br>Pinto beans<br>Kale<br>Red pepper<br>Bok choy<br>Onion<br>Mushroom <br>Cabbage <br>Tomatoes ... Fri, 19 Feb 2016 19:16:00 EST Eat more veggies by making salsa and adding it to your food when you cook. http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44479_eat_more_veggies_by_making_salsa_and_adding_it_to_your_food_when_you_cook I make homemade salsa by throwing tomatoes, onions, garlic, bell peppers and jalapenos into my processor. I make a ton of it. I add salt and some spices and usually boil it but you can skip that. My mother makes it and keeps it raw, it still tastes great it's all about preference. Keep tweaking it till you find the perfect mix that you just love. I then toss it into a ziplock bag and throw it in the fridge. It's also freezable after it's cooked. I've never frozen it raw before. <br><b... Fri, 19 Feb 2016 09:04:00 EST Tomato, smashed chick pea sandwich with veggies http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44465_tomato_smashed_chick_pea_sandwich_with_veggies <em>370</em> Tomato, smashed chick pea sandwich with veggies <em>370</em> <br> <br>I love tomato sandwich, but then I think I should be eating beans and a salad so what am I to do?....put them together. <br> <br> <em>370</em> <em>485</em> <em>69</em> <em>284</em> <em>267</em> <em>371</em> <em>284</em> <em>368</em> ... Thu, 18 Feb 2016 09:44:00 EST Lentil and Veggie Soup http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44460_lentil_and_veggie_soup Lentil Soup<br><br> <em>284</em> <em>291</em> <em>367</em> <em>370</em> <em>371</em> <em>373</em> <br><br>Ingredients<br><br>1 can of tomatoes<br>1 can of green beans<br>1 cup zucchini<br>Half bag cabbage<br>1/2 cup swiss chard <br>1/2 cup dandelion greens <br>2 large carrot, finely diced<br>1 potato, finely diced <br>1/2 medium onion, and 1 green onion, finely diced <br>2 stalks celery (leaves too), finely diced <br>1 pound dried brown lentils<br>2 quarts water or v... Thu, 18 Feb 2016 00:49:00 EST Christmas Lima Beans with a Little Bit of Veggie Soup http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44442_christmas_lima_beans_with_a_little_bit_of_veggie_soup Christmas Lima Beans with a Little Bit of Veggie Soup<br><br>Soup is an awesome way to get healthy. Soup is easy to make, unless you burn the soup or pour the whole salt container in the soup, you can't really mess it up, you can use up extra veggie so no veggies are wasted, you can add or subtract ingredients on any recipe and you can make up your own recipe, and it never turns out the same, so here is another soup recipe I made. <br> <br> <em>267</em> <em>284</em> <em>291</em> ... Wed, 17 Feb 2016 00:57:00 EST WHAT I PLAN EVERY DAY http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44425_what_i_plan_every_day I have been dealing with weight issues since I was about five or six years old. I have done lots of diets, exercise, and even a medical fast. I have had many levels of success and failure over the years. However, now I believe that I have a grasp on what I need to do to be successful. I have a compulsive eating disorder. I have to remain very structured in what I do every day. I am not somebody who can just come into work when there are doughnuts, have one and be fine about it. I have to be v... Tue, 16 Feb 2016 09:31:00 EST Turnip Squash and Bean Soup http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44417_turnip_squash_and_bean_soup Turnip Squash and Bean Soup <br><br> <em>369</em> <em>284</em> <em>370</em> <em>371</em> <em>369</em> <em>284</em> <em>370</em> <em>371</em> <em>369</em> <em>370</em> <br><br>I had a whole bunch of frozen butternut squash that I was going to make several different soups out of, well ends up that I cooked the squash but didn't have time make the soup (back in November) so I threw it in the freezer. I had sooo much squash that I had to make a second soup and her... Mon, 15 Feb 2016 21:40:00 EST COOKING AT HOME IS KEY http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44401_cooking_at_home_is_key I have been dealing with weight issues since I was about five or six years old. I have done lots of diets, exercise, and even a medical fast. I have had many levels of success and failure over the years. However, now I believe that I have a grasp on what I need to do to be successful. I have a compulsive eating disorder. I have to remain very structured in what I do every day. I am not somebody who can just come into work when there are doughnuts, have one and be fine about it. I have to be v... Mon, 15 Feb 2016 01:05:00 EST Cabbage and Yellow Split Pea http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44400_cabbage_and_yellow_split_pea Cabbage and Yellow Split Pea<br><br> <img src="http://photosaws.sparkpeople.com/guid/cb8482c2-9285-4603-8ff6-ec8f92199df7.jpg"><br> <br>Ingredients: <br><br>Red and green cabbage <br>1 cup yellow split peas <br>onions (red, green)<br>leek <br>red pepper <br>celery <br>bok choy <br>asparagus <br>greens <br>zucchini<br>yellow squash <br>swiss chard stems<br>mushrooms<br>broccoli <br>cauliflower<br>green beans<br>1 can dic... Sun, 14 Feb 2016 23:45:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44386_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Sun, 14 Feb 2016 10:39:00 EST I made a Clean out the Freezer Stir Fry #2...while baking sweet potatoes, mushrooms and eggplant http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44380_i_made_a_clean_out_the_freezer_stir_fry_2while_baking_sweet_potatoes_mushrooms_and_eggplant I made a Clean out the Freezer Stir Fry #2...while baking sweet potatoes, mushrooms and eggplant <br> <br> <em>258</em> <em>485</em> <em>267</em> <em>284</em> <em>69</em> <em>291</em> <em>369</em> <em>371</em> <br> <br>You know its time to use what you have in the freezer when you open the freezer and stuff co... Sat, 13 Feb 2016 21:00:00 EST Veggie Juice Recipe http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44368_veggie_juice_recipe <em>210</em> <em>370</em> <br><br>Veggie Juice is so nutritious for your body!! I like to to make a juice often to help with inflammation in my body. It is also good for energy and vitality. Juicing is giving your body nutrients in a pure, easy to digest and absorb form. I have been making juices for about six years now. I can really tell when I have had my juice and when I have not. I have a better feeling of wellness and energy when I have had one. Generally, I like to make a juice in ... Sat, 13 Feb 2016 07:28:00 EST Chunky Red Lentil Stew http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44366_chunky_red_lentil_stew Chunky Red Lentil Stew <br><br> <img src="http://photosaws.sparkpeople.com/guid/3ab8905e-3136-4ea9-9ba9-efca40e79af1.jpg"><br> <br>Ingredients: <br><br>celery <br>greens<br>bok choy <br>red onion <br>mushrooms<br>diced tomatoes <br>swiss chard stems<br>2 carrots, chopped<br>red and green cabbage <br>1 cup dried red lentils, rinsed and drained<br>2 cups plus 2 tablespoon of veggie broth <br>curry powder, garlic, dried veggie (it is dry veggie chunks that I found in the spice secti... Fri, 12 Feb 2016 23:40:00 EST Chocolate Banana Ice Cream http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44330_chocolate_banana_ice_cream <em>265</em> <em>265</em> <em>265</em> <em>265</em> <em>265</em> <em>265</em> <em>265</em> <em>265</em> <em>265</em> <em>265</em> <em>265</em> <em>265</em> <em>265</em> <em>265</em> <em>265</em> <em>265</em> <em>265</em> <em>265</em> <br> <br>Chocolate Banana Ice Cream<br> ... Wed, 10 Feb 2016 22:36:00 EST Vegetable Tomato Sauce http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44293_vegetable_tomato_sauce Vegetable Tomato Sauce<br> <br>Ingredients <br> <br>Vegetables to saute <br> <br>2 fresh tomatoes <br>1 carrot, peeled and diced<br>1/4 cup mushrooms, sliced<br>1 celery stalk... Mon, 8 Feb 2016 23:41:00 EST Meal Prepping to Save You on a Bad Day http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44292_meal_prepping_to_save_you_on_a_bad_day I live alone, so this is easier for me now than when my kids were still home & my husband was still alive.<br><br>I bulk cook whenever possible. Then, I package and freeze the remainders in single servings in zip-lock bags. So, when I make rice, I make a lot. Same with roasted chicken breasts. I chop up the extra & freeze it, already cooked. Those two items in particular, are my staples. I use my slow cooker often, too. Once I take out my dinner portion, I freeze the rest.<br><br>I buy frozen... Mon, 8 Feb 2016 20:53:00 EST Homemade Oat Milk http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44273_homemade_oat_milk Homemade Oat Milk <br><br><br>I forgot to get some plant milk and I had one cup of steel cut oats so...<br> <br><br><br>...I soak one cup overnight in lots of water...rinse very well (they will be slimy if you don't rinse well)...add 3 cups of new water and blend in blender...strain.<br> <br><br><br>I don't use very much milk so I freeze the leftovers in smal... Sun, 7 Feb 2016 21:12:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44260_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Sun, 7 Feb 2016 10:43:00 EST Veggie stock made with scrap veggies http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44255_veggie_stock_made_with_scrap_veggies Veggie stock made with scrap veggies<br><br>I thought that making stock (or both) would be really hard. Then I started reading how easy it is to make especially when you use the pressure cooker.<br><br>Well then I just didn’t have the heart to use the good veggie to make the stock.<br><br>Well why not use scraps from the veggies…you know parts you throw away. Hey what a great idea so here is what I did.<br><br>Saved:<br>Onions including the skins (three different types)<br>Carrots even the ... Sat, 6 Feb 2016 20:40:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44241_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Sat, 6 Feb 2016 01:30:00 EST Red Lentils Barley and a Lot of Veggies Soup http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44240_red_lentils_barley_and_a_lot_of_veggies_soup Red Lentils Barley and a Lot of Veggies Soup <br><br> <img src="http://photosaws.sparkpeople.com/guid/634f24b4-31d3-4bc8-8c02-8e5917459d3e.JPG"><br><br>Ingredients <br>1 tablespoon of broth <br>1-2 onions (red, white, yellow) <br>1 cup chopped celery <br>I cup carrot <br>2 cups purple and green cabbage <br>2 cups collard greens<br>1 small diced zucchini <br>5 mushrooms, chopped <br>3 potatoes, diced <br>1 cup cauliflower <br>1/2 cup diced eggplant <br>1 cans diced tomatoes <br>2 cups red l... Sat, 6 Feb 2016 00:17:00 EST Cooking: Changing diet food into a sustainable lifestyle http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44228_cooking_changing_diet_food_into_a_sustainable_lifestyle Many people hear the word "diet" and think of torturous months of bland rabbit food. It most definitely does not have to be like this!<br><br>I have followed many different meal plans that were traditionally bland, felt extremely restrictive, or consisted of nothing but salads. And it was always so hard eating my pitiful diet food while I saw my family enjoying foods I craved. My diabetic husband was still eating regular food, which was not helping him control his condition. And there was... Fri, 5 Feb 2016 12:44:00 EST Butternut Squash Soup http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44218_butternut_squash_soup Butternut Squash Soup<br><br><br>1 big butternut squash (mine was about 2 pounds)<br>1/2 cup onion<br>1 can white kidney beans<br>1/2 red pepper<br>big pile of cut up greens<br>3 cups of water<br>1 cup orange juice<br>A small amount of ginger, nutmeg and cinnamon<br>1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of onion powder, Mrs. dash, garlic, curry powder, seasoned salt<br><br><br>Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Cut up the butternut squash into small pieces and place on a pan and bake for around 30-45 minutes.<br... Thu, 4 Feb 2016 19:34:00 EST italian wedding soup http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44212_italian_wedding_soup Italian Wedding Soup<br>Think of this as a first-rate chicken soup with mini-meatballs and loads of flavor.<br>Ingredients<br><br>1 cup chopped onion<br>1/2 cup chopped celery<br>1 cup diced carrots<br>1 tablespoon minced garlic<br>8 cups fat-free chicken broth<br>1 1/2 cups beef broth<br>1 teaspoon dried oregano leaves<br>1 cup orzo pasta<br>6 cups fresh baby spinach<br>1 pound ground sirloin<br>1 egg<br>1 egg white<br>2 tablespoons chopped parsley<br>1 teaspoon minced garlic<br>1/4 cup Ital... Thu, 4 Feb 2016 14:19:00 EST PREPARATION IS A BIG DEAL http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44205_preparation_is_a_big_deal I have been working out a minimum of 120 minutes a day. I only do 30 minutes at a time, so I do not get frustrated or burnt out. It has been good so far.<br><br>I have been dealing with weight issues since I was about five or six years old. I have done lots of diets, exercise, and even a medical fast. I have had many levels of success and failure over the years. However, now I believe that I have a grasp on what I need to do to be successful. I have a compulsive eating disorder. I have to rem... Thu, 4 Feb 2016 09:26:00 EST Hearty Veggie Soup http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44182_hearty_veggie_soup Hearty Veggie Soup<br><br> <em>140</em> <br><br>1 tablespoon of broth or water<br>1 medium diced onion<br>1 red pepper <br>1 cup chopped celery<br>1cup chopped carrots<br>2 - 4 cups cabbage and greens ( I used turnip and collard greens )<br>1 small diced yellow squash<br>3 chopped roma tomatoes<br>1/2 diced eggplant<br>1 cup green beans<br>1 can diced tomatoes<br>2 cans of beans ( I used great northern and red beans )<br>6 cups of veggie broth ( I used 4 cups of veggie broth and two cups o... Tue, 2 Feb 2016 21:12:00 EST Cauliflower and Broccoli Soup http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44160_cauliflower_and_broccoli_soup Cauliflower and Broccoli Soup<br><br><br>1/2 of a cauliflower<br>A bunch of broccoli<br>1/2 of a zucchini and yellow squash<br>1 to 3 stalks of bok choy (the white stems cut up and sauteed, the green leaf tear up with the other greens)<br>2 to 3 stalks of celery<br>1/2 cup onion<br>1 to 2 cups white kidney beans<br>1/2 red pepper (any color pepper would work)<br>big pile of torn up greens<br>6 cups of water<br>1 cube of veggie broth<br>1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of onion powder, Mrs. dash, garlic, c... Mon, 1 Feb 2016 22:17:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44127_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Sun, 31 Jan 2016 08:42:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44104_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Sat, 30 Jan 2016 08:16:00 EST Include the Family http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=44061_include_the_family We sit down on Thursday nights and menu plan as a family -- my 7 year old daughter, my husband, and myself. We have 3 major cook books we choose from plus the spark app. We grocery shop on Friday evening or Saturday mornings as a family. I cook 6 nights per week so we each choose 2 dishes. I find it's easier for everyone to eat healthy while I only cook 1 meal. This way my daughter feels like she has a say in what she eats and it motivates her to come to the kitchen and help prepare our me... Thu, 28 Jan 2016 07:20:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value (Part 2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=43937_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value_part_2 I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Fri, 22 Jan 2016 05:52:00 EST How to Spark with the Recipe Builder! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=43923_how_to_spark_with_the_recipe_builder I love the recipe builder in Spark! It's easy to use, I can add my foods from my favorites (which are all in grams), I can enter directions, and the end result is clear and concise recipes in an Internet recipe box that I can easily share with others. In my opinion, there are some secrets for successfully building killer recipes. <br><br>First, always weigh your ingredients and enter them into the recipe builder in grams. You're mixing a lot of different foods together and using generic "serv... Thu, 21 Jan 2016 10:47:00 EST Substitute Healthy Ingredients when Baking for Less Calories and Greater Nutritional Value http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=43912_substitute_healthy_ingredients_when_baking_for_less_calories_and_greater_nutritional_value I enjoy baking, and am always on the lookout for new dessert recipes – cakes, cookies, squares, you name it. But when it comes to home-made desserts, I frequently overeat and wind up packing on the pounds with all those extra calories. Recently I’ve begun reading about making healthy ingredient substitutions, wherever possible, when preparing certain dishes. It is really fascinating how you can take a particular ingredient in a recipe and substitute in its place a healthier ingredient, whi... Thu, 21 Jan 2016 00:23:00 EST A filling low-fat meal! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=43907_a_filling_lowfat_meal Bake 1/2 of a Spaghetti Squash (seed the squash)<br><br>While baking the squash<br><br>1. Saute onion and red pepper in cooking spray<br>2. Add 1/2 cup of shredded cooked chicken<br>3. Add one can of enchilada sauce<br><br>When the squash is done - loosen up with a fork in the skin creating a squash "bowl"<br>Pour the mixture above over the squash in the "bowl"<br><br>This is a low-fat, low calorie and delicious meal that is incredibly filling. Spaghetti Squash is one of the most filling ... Wed, 20 Jan 2016 17:39:00 EST cook on weekends http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=43906_cook_on_weekends I found that cooking during the week was almost impossible. I'd come home from work too tired to cook. But I've since learned that cooking your own food is the secret to eating healthy.<br><br>Therefore I have started planning my meals on weekends, shopping for them and cooking them.<br>This simple change has made it possible to eat healthy, home-cooked food every night.<br><br>That way when you come home from work you don't have any decisions to make except to take the meal out of the free... Wed, 20 Jan 2016 17:01:00 EST JANUARY IS THE MONDAY OF MONTHS http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=43883_january_is_the_monday_of_months I have been dealing with weight issues since I was about five or six years old. I have done lots of diets, exercise, and even a medical fast. I have had many levels of success and failure over the years. However, now I believe that I have a grasp on what I need to do to be successful. I have a compulsive eating disorder. I have to remain very structured in what I do every day. I am not somebody who can just come into work when there are doughnuts, have one and be fine about it. I have to be v... Tue, 19 Jan 2016 12:03:00 EST BEING PREPARED IS KEY http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=43846_being_prepared_is_key I have been dealing with weight issues since I was about five or six years old. I have done lots of diets, exercise, and even a medical fast. I have had many levels of success and failure over the years. However, now I believe that I have a grasp on what I need to do to be successful. I have a compulsive eating disorder. I have to remain very structured in what I do every day. I am not somebody who can just come into work when there are doughnuts, have one and be fine about it. I have to be v... Mon, 18 Jan 2016 10:26:00 EST Dehydrators are Presents from Above! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=43838_dehydrators_are_presents_from_above If you're just beginning to add more fruits and vegetables to your diet and find that they tend to go bad before you can use them, invest in a dehydrator. You can dehydrate food (and rehydrate as needed) as much as you need and while it's in season, allowing to save money. Double bonus!<br><br>Also, if you're a candy kid, and miss those sweets, dehydrating fruit intensifies the flavour and gives it that little chewy texture like chewy candies. You're Welcome! <br><br>I personally love chips, ... Mon, 18 Jan 2016 00:10:00 EST Like beef? Substitute! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=43776_like_beef_substitute I like the taste of beef. <br><br>After days of chicken I want to squawk or sprout feathers. <br><br>I started with ground beef and went down the fat chain from ground beef to ground chuck to ground round to 93% fat free. Eventually, although it supposedly is much better for you, I would rather cook meat in its own fat than add fat just to brown the meat. What should I do? <br><br>I switched to stew/shredded meat for spaghetti, tacos and such. First, you braise the meat to turn it brown. Nex... Thu, 14 Jan 2016 21:35:00 EST Substitution of Healthy Foods for Not So Healthy Foods http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=43755_substitution_of_healthy_foods_for_not_so_healthy_foods I am writing about finding healthier alternatives in cooking simply because...I am NOT going to eat something if it doesn't taste good; however, I have made a choice to consciously put healthier options into my body. <br>One of my favorite foods EVER is potatoes. They are not the worst....right? However, when watching carbohydrate intake; well, they just don't make the cut. In my desperation to find something, anything, that can take their place; I stumbled across something that is so much he... Wed, 13 Jan 2016 22:51:00 EST Meal Planning/Prepping helps you eat healthy! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=43750_meal_planningprepping_helps_you_eat_healthy Do you find it difficult to find time to cook a healthy dinner for you and your family? I know I do. I work full time and between that, a husband and kids, having the time and energy to cook healthy dinners has been one of my biggest struggles. My only new year's resolution this year was to resolve this issue.<br><br>A few years ago, I attended a cooking class at the local Jr. College, and it was centered around "freezer cooking" or "30 day cooking" as you may have seen titles out there on th... Wed, 13 Jan 2016 16:03:00 EST Flames and Sauce http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=43738_flames_and_sauce Thought I would venture into the world of cooking today. As I was growing up way back in the '50's, my mother thought we should know our way around the kitchen even if we were boys and at the school I went to, boys took home ec and girls took shop. Everybody learned a little bit of everything.<br><br>Today, my cooking chores are for the most part relegated to the grille. Chicken, steak, pork chops, ribs, salmon, vegetables, and corn pretty much make up my palate. <br><br>Two staples on my... Wed, 13 Jan 2016 09:46:00 EST Avocado oil is the new coconut oil http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=43614_avocado_oil_is_the_new_coconut_oil Use it to replace canola oil when making homemade mayonnaise. You can store it in the refrigerator for up to a week.<br>Drizzle it over fish before baking or roasting.<br><br>Lecic / Shutterstock / Lecic<br>If hashtags are any indication, avocado oil is having a moment—the green oil has over 17,000 mentions on Instagram, plus it's trending on Pinterest, with tons of ideas for using it in DIY skin and hair treatments and recipes. But does it live up to the hype?<br><br>The avocado itself is no... Thu, 7 Jan 2016 18:53:00 EST Discover the Versatility of Eggs...for Breakfast, Lunch, or Dinner http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=43392_discover_the_versatility_of_eggsfor_breakfast_lunch_or_dinner Since embarking on my weight loss journey, I have been looking at different foods with lower calorie counts, that also have the benefit of making me feel full. Eggs are one such food, and they are so versatile! They can be used for any meal - breakfast, lunch, or dinner.<br><br>For breakfast, I can prepare an egg in a variety of ways -- fried, scrambled, poached -- or use eggs to make French toast. French toast is always enjoyed in my house, but it's the syrup I have to be careful about wh... Mon, 28 Dec 2015 10:24:00 EST This is how I do it http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=43354_this_is_how_i_do_it I like to host dinner parties. I even like to try new recipes when I entertain. I know, sounds risky doesn't it? I'm getting cocky because my new recipes generally turn out well. I make an announcement to my guests that they are being Guinea pigs and helping me test the recipe. They are asked to tell me if I should make it again. Fortunately for me, my guests enjoy this and are happy to participate. Some recipes make it into the recipe file, some do not. All in good fun and file building. Alt... Sat, 26 Dec 2015 07:54:00 EST Use the Slow Cooker to Prepare Today's and Tomorrow's Meals http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=43335_use_the_slow_cooker_to_prepare_todays_and_tomorrows_meals I've recently "rediscovered" my slow cooker, and started using it to prepare soups, stews, and spaghetti sauce - either during the day while I'm at work, or on a weekend while I'm doing other housework. <br><br>My favorite meals to prepare in the slow cooker include a vegetable soup, beef stew, or spaghetti sauce (once I've pre-cooked the ground beef on the stove). To add flavor to my soup or stew, I will sometimes add in a dry soup mix (consisting of vegetables, barley, and spices), or I ma... Thu, 24 Dec 2015 10:21:00 EST Changes I made http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=43324_changes_i_made Spark people has helped me significantly change the way I cook. Before SparkPeople, I fried or deep fried everything. Or I made pasta with most every meal. I never weighed my food, I filled the plate and I was raised that what you put on your plate you eat. Since coming to Sparkpeople, I have become more selective in the sorts of foods and meats that I cook and eat. I used to eat a lot of junk foods - hamburgers, hot dogs, sausages or brats. Not bad food if mixed with some healthy choic... Wed, 23 Dec 2015 19:37:00 EST Cooking for one is making me a much more creative cook. http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=43231_cooking_for_one_is_making_me_a_much_more_creative_cook It sounds selfish to just cook what you like, especially if you are cooking for others as well as yourself. Most people are. Having lost my husband earlier this year the last thing I wanted to do was cook. I relied on my grown daughters and quickly got tired of pizza and tacos. My husband had been the cook. He loved the praise and rightfully so. When I used to cook for him I was always taking that into account his tastes and it never turned out quite right for either of us. SO.. I say to... Sun, 20 Dec 2015 18:20:00 EST Dinner meals at home and at restaurants don't have to be too difficult, it takes planning, to ensure good nutrition. http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=43226_dinner_meals_at_home_and_at_restaurants_dont_have_to_be_too_difficult_it_takes_planning_to_ensure_good_nutrition I try to limit my dinner meals to smaller amounts. I cook most of my meals at home. I make lots if marinated chicken on the grill and I use leftovers for lunch the next day at work. I try to only have 3 oz. of chicken, a side vegetable, and a vegetable salad for dinner. If I haven't had enough fruit, I'll include some with dinner. If I have a desire for something sweet I will eat 1 cup of fruit and some fruit dip. I make a simple fruit dip. I make up instant unsweetened vanilla pudding with... Sun, 20 Dec 2015 13:23:00 EST Cooking Substitutions http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=43096_cooking_substitutions I like to substitute egg beaters for eggs for lower cholesterol and applesauce for less fats. In most baking you can not tell the difference. Also to save a bit of money I sometimes use cheese soup (Campbell's) or fiesta soup for flavor in place of cheddar cheese or American cheese. <br><br>Anything left over, I freeze most leftovers or have them for lunch the next day. (My men are not real big on eating leftovers.) <br><br>For a bit more nutrition, try adding apple pieces or orange pie... Wed, 16 Dec 2015 22:37:00 EST plan ahead http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42997_plan_ahead Because cooking for one is tedious every night I create several servings of a new healthy meal and package the rest for lunch the next day, and freeze what is left in individual portions for use when I just don't have time to cook. Mon, 3 Aug 2015 17:47:00 EST Healthy, easy, delicious treat http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42969_healthy_easy_delicious_treat Are you barbecuing this weekend? Grill some fruit for an easy treat. You can grill anything from melon to pitted fruits. Suggestion: cut some peaches in half. Remove the pit. Spray the cut halves with cooking spray. Grill cut side down until the fruit has some grill marks, a couple minutes on each side, but be careful not to overcook, as the fruit will get mushy. Enjoy guilt free AND get your serving of fruit. It's a win-win! Fri, 19 Jun 2015 17:47:00 EST Using packaged frozen spinach http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42960_using_packaged_frozen_spinach I have a few ways that I use frozen spinach because it is so convenient. I make a spinach-rice casserole, cream of spinach soup, spinach frittata, but I'm always looking for new recipes to use it. (but I don't care for spinach in smoothies, I know that most say you can taste it but I certainly can) Mon, 8 Jun 2015 19:04:00 EST Success Salad Dressing http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42758_success_salad_dressing Balsamic vinegar<br>Italian dressing dry mix<br>Water<br>2 Splenda packets<br>1 Salad shaker<br><br>Mix 2/3 vinegar with 1/3 water, a couple of Splenda packets and dry Italian dressing mix in a dressing shaker. Wed, 27 Aug 2014 22:49:00 EST Quick and nutritious soup for a week http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42648_quick_and_nutritious_soup_for_a_week Recipe for a 5 veggie soup that runs about 350 calories for 2 cups. Kids like it to0. Freezes for lunches<br>1 pound ground veal <br>1 46 oz can Cento chicken broth (we love Cento the best; Swanson's is our #2)<br>1 can chopped tomatoes (we like Cento or Furman)<br>half a head of napa cabbage (not as pungent)<br>1 huge onion<br>About half a stalk of celery<br>Garlic (we like Penzey's dehydrated)<br>fresh parsley (huge bouquet)<br>green beans<br><br> Wed, 9 Jul 2014 08:16:00 EST Tofu success without deep fat frying http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42525_tofu_success_without_deep_fat_frying I love tofu in Asian restaurants but know that they deep fat fry the pieces. I asked a Chinese friend how her tofu comes out so perfect . She told me to drop the pieces into boiling water for a minute or two, then drain. Then fry the pieces with just a thin coating of oil in the skillet. Comes out perfect without the excess oil. The outside of the pieces are nice and crusty. I use firm tofu for this. Fri, 23 May 2014 12:07:00 EST Stretch meat with lentils. http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42519_stretch_meat_with_lentils To cut back on our meat intake, I add cooked lentils to dishes that I use ground beef or ground turkey in. Thu, 22 May 2014 00:30:00 EST Rice Cooker & Brown Rice http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42508_rice_cooker_brown_rice I kept having my rice cooker spewing out liquid when cooking brown rice.<br><br>I started putting the steamer basket in empty and it "breaks up the bubbles" as the rice cooks -- no more spewing! Tue, 20 May 2014 16:00:00 EST Prep the pan! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42418_prep_the_pan Buy a pan with a good non-stick coating and use less than half the oil or butter for saute or pan-frying. Thu, 24 Apr 2014 21:17:00 EST Love long-cooking oatmeal? Hate stirring? Use your crockpot http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42396_love_longcooking_oatmeal_hate_stirring_use_your_crockpot My hubby loves the oatmeal that takes 40 minutes of constant stirring until it's cooked. (example is McCann's Steel Cut Oat Meal).<br><br>Now he can use a small crockpot, 4 cups cold water, 1 cup oats and set it on low just before going to sleep.<br><br>6 hours later, an entire pot of perfectly cooked oatmeal. Sun, 13 Apr 2014 15:00:00 EST Kitchen Workout!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42389_kitchen_workout If you cook wearing your work out clothes; you'll be less likely to keep on tasting; therefore saving calories. Sounds silly and it may just be. But it works. lol<br>Plus it also may remind you to squeeze your booty muscles! <em>244</em> Thu, 10 Apr 2014 18:24:00 EST Skinny Taste great cooking site. http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42381_skinny_teste_great_cooking_site Is a great website with recipes it gives you the calories count and WW points and so far I try 3 recipes and they were delicious I made : Flourless Brownies, Beef stir fry , Thai coconut shrimp yummy. Wed, 9 Apr 2014 06:29:00 EST Buy chicken with bones -- then make soup with leftovers http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42380_buy_chicken_with_bones_then_make_soup_with_leftovers I usually buy my chicken with the bones in -- whether it's chicken breasts, thighs or an entire roaster. <br>Then I toss any left over carcass in water to cook for about 4 hours. Delicious broth and occasionally pieces of meat as well that were just too difficult to pull off the bone. <br>If I only have a couple of bones, I freeze them until I have enough. Tue, 8 Apr 2014 22:19:00 EST fats http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42342_fats well instead of making goodies with sugar or bad fats I use very little or add things like unsweetened applesauce, or bananas, coconut milk, whole wheat flour, nonfat milk if called for, nonfat cream cheese, etc. little tricks that help lower fat and sugar too. Fri, 28 Mar 2014 11:27:00 EST The Weekly Purge http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42305_the_weekly_purge Once a week, I 'purge' the refrigerator, getting rid of all limp or wilted foods, wipe down the shelves and drawers; then I can see what we need to replenish and it helps me w/ my grocery list as well as menu plan for the week. (It only takes minutes) Mon, 17 Mar 2014 10:21:00 EST USE BANANAS!!!! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42211_use_bananas Need a healthy, natural, sweet, and usable substitute for cooking? IN place of eggs or anything else unecessary? Go the Vegan route and use bananas. It only takes one, mush up your ingredients w/ your hands and it makes it fun!!!! Wed, 12 Feb 2014 15:58:00 EST Lasagna without noodles http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42169_lasagna_without_noodles I blanch cabbage leaves and drain them and then use them in place of the pasta. It freezes beautifully and my husband and I hardly miss the pasta. Mon, 3 Feb 2014 20:51:00 EST Silk Coconut Milk as Coffee/matte for coffee http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42158_silk_coconut_milk_as_coffeematte_for_coffee I use Coconut milk Vanilla flavor for coffee . I don't like just milk in my coffee but this is a great creamy milk it does the trick .I use same one for Oatmeal too . Wed, 29 Jan 2014 06:28:00 EST Extend splt pea soup with spinach and butternut squash http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42149_extend_splt_pea_soup_with_spinach_and_butternut_squash In addition to sauteed carrots, onions and garlic I added 4 cups of fresh spinach and 1 cup of cooked butternut squash to the 8 cups of water and 1 pound of dried split peas when I made soup. Once cooked, the immersion blender mixed everything into the familiar look of split pea soup. Doing this adds flavor, nutrients and some volume lowering the per serving calorie count. . I also added a splash of balsamic vinegar to finish the soup. Quite Yum Sun, 26 Jan 2014 16:59:00 EST Savory Oatmeal http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42127_savory_oatmeal I make oatmeal and add some sauté onion, carrots, olives and is a nice healthy lunch. You can add what veggies you like . Wed, 22 Jan 2014 10:31:00 EST Low Fat Ranch dip http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42126_low_fat_ranch_dip I mix 1 c of Greek yogurt with 1 tablespoon of Ranch dip powder mix is a delicious dip good for veggies ,I put it over a bake potato. If you don't like too salty start with 1 teaspoon first,, and add more for you taste. Wed, 22 Jan 2014 09:24:00 EST Oatmeal growing with more water http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42114_oatmeal_growing_with_more_water If you want to double your Oatmeal but use only 1/2 c put 2 c of water in a pot simmer slow after start boiling 5 min.add 2 T flax meal at the end and you have almost double the amount .I add cinnamon and 2 T of light cream and Splenda in mine is delicious. Sun, 19 Jan 2014 08:45:00 EST Fun Cooking http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42052_fun_cooking I love cooking and I always look for recipes in sparkpeople. I usually cook dishes that I can take leftovers for lunch the next day. My favorite recipes are slow cooking ones. I recently found crock pot liners that come right out after your food is ready leaving your crock pot spotless. Fri, 3 Jan 2014 17:04:00 EST Batch Cooking Has Saved Me! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41992_batch_cooking_has_saved_me Struggle to cook homemade, healthy dinners during the week? Try batch cooking on Sundays. This week I baked chicken with oregano & lemon, baked pork chops, roasted potatoes & carrots, baked sweet potatoes, & lasagna (1 for this week, froze 2). From this I make my lunches, early dinners and my husband can make his dinner easily from the already cooked choices. Add ons are salads, frozen veggies and more. We eat well, I'm not exhausted, and I still have time for me after dinner to workout and ... Mon, 9 Dec 2013 23:19:00 EST Meal Planning http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41897_meal_planning I don't always have time to make a meal plan for the week. In an effort to make at least one healthy dinner I keep a favorite cookbook in the car and stop at the store on the way home. This way I know I will have everything I need. Mon, 4 Nov 2013 10:29:00 EST preparation http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41810_preparation Preparing meals for your family the night before help save time and makes the next day a little easier. Sun, 13 Oct 2013 21:19:00 EST sneaky vegetable (kids and me) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41805_sneaky_vegetable_kids_and_me When making chili, curries, or other seasoned meat sauces. mince vegs to a very fine level, or puree. Then and to sauce. You may need to add some additional seasoning. Fri, 11 Oct 2013 22:26:00 EST Rice cookers http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41688_rice_cookers I cook most of my meals in an electric rice cooker, which has a steaming tray. Better carbs, no extra fat, and no picking at it while you eat. If you're shopping, try to find a rice cooker with a steaming tray. If you can't find one, there are still lots of recipes you can make, and a lot of them don't even include rice. <em>4</em> Fri, 6 Sep 2013 22:28:00 EST Pre-cooking meat http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41681_precooking_meat I pre-cook a turkey and split in baggies for the freezer in 3 or 4 oz portions. This is great to grab and go to put in pasta, salads or just as your daily protein. I can then make alternative meat for my hubby and son if they don't want turkey and eat the same veggies and sides while lowering my calorie count. <em>465</em> Thu, 5 Sep 2013 14:44:00 EST Calorie Free Noodles http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41632_calorie_free_noodles One of my MOST favorite things is shiritake fettucini noodles. Just rinse well,then I cut them in half, since they are long. They are wonderful stir fried with just a little olive oil and an abundance of fresh vegetables! You can also saute some chicken breast or lean pork and have a great, healthy and very low calorie meal. <em>4</em> Mon, 26 Aug 2013 09:49:00 EST Baking measurements http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41604_baking_measurements I like to cook & bake but hate measuring things like flour & olive oil - I always make a mess. So today I used my food scale to see just how much a cup of flour weighs, a Tbl of oil, etc. & wrote all the weights & measures a 3x5 card, which is now taped to the inside of the cupboard door. Now I can just put the mixing bowl or pot/pan on the scale & add the ingredients without having to spill flour everywhere trying to get it in the measuring cup. Sun, 18 Aug 2013 14:40:00 EST 1LB Ground Meat = 4 Meals with 4 servings per meal!!! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41589_1lb_ground_meat_4_meals_with_4_servings_per_meal Use 1lb ground meat and lots of veggies to make 4 different meals! Add bulk with lots of different veggies (shredded or chopped). You get up to 4 servings per meal (approx. 12-16 servings). I stretch meat and save money too. I do the same with boneless chicken breast and boneless pork. Some weeks I get 12-14 individual meals that I would add different side dishes, salads or more veggies too! All my lunch & dinner entrées for the week done!! Thu, 15 Aug 2013 10:59:00 EST freezer cooking http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41577_freezer_cooking Double your dinner and save some in your freezer for later. It saves time and stress on those busy school nights. Running to soccer or baseball? Not a problem you have dinner waiting in the freezer. My family's freezer fav? Chicken Pot Pie! Tue, 13 Aug 2013 14:33:00 EST Cook in batches http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41576_cook_in_batches Pre-chop veggies. Do the prep work in the evening when you're watching TV. Chop veggies while you watch your favorite shows. You can chop veggies for all your evening meals for the week in an hour or so. Then put in containers or bags and stick them in the fridge. Tue, 13 Aug 2013 14:29:00 EST Cook in batches http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41575_cook_in_batches Pre-chop veggies. Do the prep work in the evening when you're watching TV. Chop veggies while you watch your favorite shows. You can chop veggies for all your evening meals for the week in an hour or so. Then put in containers or bags and stick them in the fridge. Tue, 13 Aug 2013 14:28:00 EST Hide and seek veggies http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41491_hide_and_seek_veggies Add grated carrots to chili. They will disappear , add a sweetness, and help thicken it. I added four cups to a pot of chili and got complements on the taste and texture. Wed, 24 Jul 2013 10:15:00 EST Light Hummus http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41447_light_hummus This hummus is very simple to make. Drain a can of chick peas and add to the processor. Add the juice of half a lemon, one clove of garlic pressed or minced, two tablespoons olive oil, salt and pepper. Whirl the ingredients or pulse a few times until the beans have pureed. The calorie count includes the beans and the two tblsp olive oil. That's it. A low calorie hummus that anyone can whip up. Serve with crudite or crackers. Fri, 12 Jul 2013 13:54:00 EST Easy Way to Make Iced Tea http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41440_easy_way_to_make_iced_tea I use my drip coffee maker to make quick easy iced tea. Put 3-4 tea bags in the coffee filter and run through a carafe of water. Pour hot tea into a pitcher 1/2 full of ice and Viola... perfect iced tea! Thu, 11 Jul 2013 09:38:00 EST Buy Local http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41408_buy_local Buy local fruits and vegetables, especially in season, from your farmer's markets and food will last longer and to me, is more fun to cook with. Sat, 6 Jul 2013 10:32:00 EST NO CALORIE ITEMS TO COOK & BAKE WITH http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41372_no_calorie_items_to_cook_bake_with I USE BUTTER SPRAY A LOT NO CALORIES.I EVEN USE IT TO COOK WITH.ALSO MRS.DASH.I ALSO LOVE COOKING WITH STEVIA I BUY THE OFF BRAND LIKE MEIJER'S B/C IT'S CHEAPER.I LOVE BAKING WITH IT Sat, 29 Jun 2013 13:28:00 EST Grilling Veggies http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41370_grilling_veggies Use a cooling rack placed crosswise on your grill to keep vegetables in place and not falling through. Spray it with nonstick cooking spray to make it an easy job.<br><br>No fancy gear needed, nothing extra to store in the off-season. Sat, 29 Jun 2013 11:20:00 EST Healthy Low Calories Snack http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41344_healthy_low_calories_snack I keep home made hummus in the refrigerator, usually spinach edamame hummus as a quick snack. Sliced cucumber or zucchini make a healthy vehicle for the hummus. I also add it to wraps or pita bread sandwiches. Wed, 26 Jun 2013 07:58:00 EST Cooking Meat http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41340_cooking_meat When cooking meat or poultry, remove it from the refrigerator 5 minutes before adding to a hot pan. If you put it in right away it shocks it and it becomes tough. Wed, 26 Jun 2013 05:25:00 EST Easy Vegetables http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41303_easy_vegetables Toss some broccoli into your pasta that's boiling for a couple of minutes at the end. Then you bulk up your meal with healthy vegetables that are al dente along with your pasta! It doesn't get any easier than that! Tue, 18 Jun 2013 16:52:00 EST clean up http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41265_clean_up As I cook I do dishes and so that way the only dishes that need to be washed are the one that are being used. It makes it easier and shorter time in the kitchen Tue, 11 Jun 2013 12:40:00 EST Full flavor salad dressing alternatives http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41195_full_flavor_salad_dressing_alternatives I recently tried a yogurt blue cheese dressing. It's delicious and tastes just like the full fat/calorie version at a fraction of the calories. The one I tried had only 35 calories per serving. <br><br>If you haven't tried it already...give yogurt dressings a try on your salads! Wed, 5 Jun 2013 00:55:00 EST Easily remove an egg yolk http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41151_easily_remove_an_egg_yolk If you're like me and not supposed to eat the egg yolk (but love eggs), use a turkey baster. Take the rubber portion off, squeeze it, hold it over the yolk, and then stop squeezing. The suction will force the yolk (and only the yolk) into the handle. Voilà! Egg whites! :) Wed, 29 May 2013 12:30:00 EST TOMATO PASTE http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41144_tomato_paste I keep a tube of tomato paste on hand for cooking. Good for when you only need a tbls. Tue, 28 May 2013 09:37:00 EST Looks so good I can taste it! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41139_looks_so_good_i_can_taste_it I find that I am a very visual person, I like colorful food...so when making meal plan to avoid the temptation of going out I make a visual meal plan calendar and then it is like punishment if I miss out on something that looks to good to give up.<br>sort of the you don't know what your missing until it is gone approach...well I see it and I know I will miss it <em>211</em> Mon, 27 May 2013 13:05:00 EST Double Duty http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41120_double_duty Anytime I cook I try to cook two days worth of food. For instance, instead of one healthy casserole, I'll cook two and freeze one for a day when I'm feeling too tired to cook. It's sometimes too tempting to call for pizza delivery. If I have that casserole to throw in the oven, that's one day that I won't give in to temptation! <em>4</em> Tue, 21 May 2013 16:01:00 EST Gum! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41114_gum Pop in a piece of mint gum (or flavored if you like it but mint is the strongest) to stop all the finger licking and tasting while you're cooking and baking. You won't wanna ruin the taste of the gum by eating the food. My sister and I own a cake business on the side, it helps to avoid eatng all of the sweet stuff. Mon, 20 May 2013 22:53:00 EST Dutch Ovens http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41096_dutch_ovens I use my Dutch oven instead of a slow cooker, the food comes out with a rich flavor (like in a slow cooker) but takes less time. And I can get everything ready and have my husband throw it in the oven if I'm not at home. I prep and pre-cook whatever needs to be done and put the Dutch oven in the fridge. In the end, it saves me time and saves me from having to explain how the slow cooker works. Thu, 16 May 2013 13:56:00 EST Fill Up Before a Meal http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41095_fill_up_before_a_meal Still in the phase where your always hungry? Try filling up on low-cal foods and water before you eat. I often eat a cup of watermelon slices and a glass of water before a meal to help make me fuller faster. Thu, 16 May 2013 12:44:00 EST Making Pie Crust http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41060_making_pie_crust When you have completed your pie crust dough, wrap it in saran wrap and refrigerate it for one/half hour. Doing that produces a more tender crust. Wed, 15 May 2013 05:52:00 EST Coconut Oil http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41048_coconut_oil Cooking with oil is best done with coconut oil. the properties in it are amazing compared to everyday oils like veggie oil and canola. Sun, 12 May 2013 01:42:00 EST DON'T USE PAM! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41031_dont_use_pam I have found that pam and those other aerosol cooking sprays has butane in them! So instead I went to my kitchen store and brought a sprayer that you have to pump, put your olive oil or other favorite oils in there, pump then spray... much cleaner for your body and lets get away from those chemicals! Wed, 8 May 2013 10:32:00 EST Tomato paste papillottes http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40997_tomato_paste_papillottes When a recipe requires some tomato paste it's usually the equivalent of two table spoons. What to do with what's left? I freeze it in aluminum foil papillottes containing each two table spoons. When I need some tomato paste I just take one papillotte. Tue, 30 Apr 2013 20:31:00 EST Adding helpful kitchen aids to your Sparks grocery list http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40943_adding_helpful_kitchen_aids_to_your_sparks_grocery_list If you come across a handy kitchen aid you want to buy you can add it to the weekly shopping list. <br><br>Go to "My Nutrition" page,<br>"Add/Edit Extra Meal category",<br>In the pop-up "New Extra Meal Category" enter a word like "shops",<br>"Save settings",<br>which sends you back to "My Nutrition" page.<br><br>There is now a section for "shops"<br><br>Add kitchen aid under "Enter food not listed" then add it to the new "shops" section.<br><br>Press "Grocery List" and the new aid now appea... Fri, 19 Apr 2013 06:31:00 EST SLOW COOKERS http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40908_slow_cookers I use a liner in my slow cooker to save time on cleaning it. Fri, 12 Apr 2013 11:57:00 EST Pasta on the go http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40873_pasta_on_the_go I cook a whole package of pasta and after removing the water, I put individual size servings in a ziplog bag. I add about 1 tablespoon of water each (to prevent dryness) and put them in the refrigerator. It stays fresh for about 3 days, and it freezes perfectly for about 2 weeks. Sat, 6 Apr 2013 10:37:00 EST Easy Way To Poach Eggs http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40828_easy_way_to_poach_eggs I LOVE poached eggs for breakfast and a fast and easy way to poach them is in the microwave. I get a bowl and fill it about 1/3 with water and heat it for 2 minute in the microwave. I then crack open two eggs into the water and microwave for another minute. Once done, I gently pour out excess water and then add salt and pepper to taste. YUM! Wed, 27 Mar 2013 17:39:00 EST Secret to peeling hard boiled eggs http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40822_secret_to_peeling_hard_boiled_eggs <em>451</em> Add at least one Tablespoon of baking soda to the water I boil my eggs in. Also stir your eggs occasionally as they begin to boil, this keeps the yolk in the middle. The baking soda always makes the egg shells come off easily. 90 calories and packed with protein, hard boiled eggs are a great snack too. <em>451</em> Tue, 26 Mar 2013 16:23:00 EST Satisfying dessert http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40781_satisfying_dessert What I miss the most in low calorie diets is dessert. I cannot eat just one or two cookies. For 100 calories, I have a sixteen ounce root beer float. I use diet root beer and one-half cup (100 calories) of slow churned low fat vanilla ice cream. Mmmmmmm delicious and extremely satisfying! Wed, 20 Mar 2013 22:02:00 EST i sneak veggies in every meal! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40777_i_sneak_veggies_in_every_meal I add spinach, broccoli, and zucchini to almost everything. Omelets, spaghetti, sometimes the family doesn't know:) Tue, 19 Mar 2013 20:29:00 EST Easy Oven Clean up http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40759_easy_oven_clean_up Tin foil or better yet purchase a rectangular tin pan (dollar tree) and place at the bottom of your oven or bottom rack for food spillage. Saves on time cleaning oven. Fri, 15 Mar 2013 22:10:00 EST The Joy of Cooking! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40650_the_joy_of_cooking Learn to enjoy cooking your meals! You are in control of what goes into what you eat, and it's fun finding new recipes for tasty, healthy meals. Wed, 27 Feb 2013 07:56:00 EST New favorite snack http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40631_new_favorite_snack I work in a hospital from 7a-7p and anyone that has ever worked in an ER knows how awful the staff tends to eat. There are always treats and lots of take out food. To combat the sugar cravings I brought in my own personal jar of natural peanut butter and I bum a couple of packages of broken hospital graham crackers. It's plenty sweet for me and it takes care of the cravings. I actually feel like I've been cheating.........but I haven't :) Sun, 24 Feb 2013 16:42:00 EST Chicken in a pinch http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40630_chicken_in_a_pinch I bake or grill 5 or 6 boneless chicken breasts once a week. I cut them in half and put them in a zip loc bag and put them in the freezer. Any time I need some chicken for salad or quesadillas, I pull one out and microwave for 1 to 2 minutes. The chicken is very moist and fresh and readily available. Shhhh, don't tell anyone. Sun, 24 Feb 2013 11:00:00 EST freezing space http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40617_freezing_space I like to buy in bulk like burger meat or stew meat I unpack the meat and repack in ziplock bags most bags are filled with just the meat I will be cooking as I am alone I do not waste and by laying the bags flat I save space and defrosting is fast Sat, 23 Feb 2013 10:04:00 EST making a SERRANO PEPPER taste good http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40608_making_a_serrona_pepper_taste_good take this simple pepper and prepare it for many of your favorite dishes by either putting a tsp of low fat butter or some oil of your choice in a frying pan. It does not take much but you want to saute it in something. Turn the stove top on low heat and just cook the Serrano Pepper until 4 sides are darkened (not burnt). It will then be soft and VERY TASTY with your meal. This is a SIMPLE something to make your meal interesting. Fri, 22 Feb 2013 02:30:00 EST The Healthy Breakfast Sandwich http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40605_the_healthy_breakfast_sandwich Do you love breakfast sandwiches, but hate the calorie content? Well, I make a really good one and its under 250 calories. crack 2 egg whites into a bowl, cover with a paper towel and microwave on high 70 secs. put on top of a 100 calorie english muffin. add 2 jimmy dean turkey sausage patties. you could add a low fat cheese, but I don't think it needs it. It's very hearty and yummy! enjoy. Thu, 21 Feb 2013 16:38:00 EST New Alternative for Stir-Fry http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40542_new_alternative_for_stirfry Instead of cooking up brown rice as the base to toss your stir-fry on -- go for the extra green veggie instead. Put a layer of fresh spinach on your dinner plate and top that with your stir-fry. More greens, less starch, but nicely filling. Sun, 10 Feb 2013 20:35:00 EST Chicken stock http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40534_chicken_stock Whenever I cook a chicken I make stock from the leftovers. Once I've removed the fat from this I keep it in the fridge (or freeze it in flexible cupcake molds) and use it to stir fry vegetables with/add to sauces instead of oils... it really works. My current favourite use is a steak sauce made from mushrooms and onion fried with the stock, a teaspoon of balsamic vinegar, and a tablespoon of reduced fat greek yoghurt... it's great! Sun, 10 Feb 2013 16:15:00 EST NO BRAINER http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40502_no_brainer Take a 2 serving package of Uncle Bens rice and by adding broccoli, make it a 4 serving recipe. I can half all my diet calories by doing that with any recipe. PLEASE!! Fri, 8 Feb 2013 10:33:00 EST Cream Soups http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40439_cream_soups When making a cream soup, use an immersion blender to thicken soup. In some soups like potato reserve some pieces and add to thickened mixture. Great Carb reducer! Mon, 28 Jan 2013 07:03:00 EST Tuna Wraps http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40431_tuna_wraps I wrap my tuna salad (I substitute a fat free salad dressing to step up taste instead of a light mayo) inside of large Iceberg lettuce leaves instead of a pita or wrap bread.....delicious and way less calories! Sun, 27 Jan 2013 12:07:00 EST Creamy Chicken Casserole http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40400_creamy_chicken_casserole When in hurry and don't have leftover chicken I get a whole cooked chicken from the deli. Any leftover from that I make chicken salad for lunches the next day. Wed, 23 Jan 2013 12:04:00 EST Spice Things Up! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40389_spice_things_up My mother has always eaten tons of salt so to avoid the same pattern, I try combining different and new spices to add flavour. It makes meals more interesting and breaks up the usual routine. Now, I never add salt when I cook or eat, and I don't miss it. Mon, 21 Jan 2013 12:10:00 EST Steamed Chicken. http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40387_steamed_chicken Under the pasta insert in your stock pot, put halved onions, chopped carrots and celery into the steaming water. Put your chicken (whole or parts - be sure to slit to the leg and wing joints for even cooking) in the pasta insert and steam for a half hour or so, until the meat reads 160 degrees F. Lift the insert out, put the chicken on a baking sheet and finish crisping the skin in a 350-degree oven. Season the broth left in the stock pot, add some of the chicken, and enjoy! Mon, 21 Jan 2013 10:22:00 EST Planning Ahead http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40365_planning_ahead Instead of making my usual recipe for Spark's yummy buttermilk cornmeal muffins and freezing the leftovers after DH and I finish a meal, I doubled the recipe and now have muffins for more 5 more meals in my freezer! <em>334</em> Thu, 17 Jan 2013 20:54:00 EST Meal Planning http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40336_meal_planning Each night when I clean up after dinner, I make sure that I have things underway for the next night's dinner. I make sure that I know what I am planning to make and I double check that I have all ingredients. If something needs to be taken out and defrosted, I get that done. Mon, 14 Jan 2013 18:49:00 EST Keep the kitchen tidy http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40302_keep_the_kitchen_tidy By keeping the kitchen tidy, you can prepare homemade snacks and meals that are lower calorie - better than takeaways or fast food! Sat, 12 Jan 2013 01:55:00 EST Reduced fat chicken stock http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40222_reduced_fat_chicken_stock I steam my veg in either reduced fat chicken stock or vegetable stock. They taste super yummy! And it makes me want to eat more. another good tip is using evaporated milk(low fat) and a little corn starch to thicken sauces, it gives a really creamy texture to recipes without having to use the high calorie heavy cream. Sun, 6 Jan 2013 09:25:00 EST eggs http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40200_eggs I love eggs in the morning but they are a lot of calories first thing in a day so I separate them and only cook the whites because most of the calories are in the yolk Sat, 5 Jan 2013 06:51:00 EST Poaching Chicken http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40183_poaching_chicken When I poach chicken and dont have time to let it dry out a little before using it in a recipe. I shred it, put it in a clean kitchen towel and squeeze out the extra liquid. Fri, 4 Jan 2013 14:19:00 EST Tomato Paste http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40162_tomato_paste A lot of recipes I use call for 1 Tbs of Tomato Paste.<br>In the past I threw out the can. Thu, 3 Jan 2013 23:13:00 EST Whip Cream Cheese Secret Ingredient http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40158_whip_cream_cheese_secret_ingredient Add 1-2 tbsp of Whipped Cream cheese to pasta sauces, gravies, meat and pasta/veggies etc to add a CREAMY RICH flavor and consistency. This will turn a regular tomato sauce into "Tomato Alfredo" ; and impart a creamy taste when cooking vegetables, meat, and pasta with no sauce. Thu, 3 Jan 2013 18:36:00 EST Soy Smoothie Made in my Bullet Blender http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40079_soy_smoothie_made_in_my_bullet_blender Healthy way to start your morning <em>7</em> ! Tastes great, adds lots of protein to your morning and will hold off cravings until lunch time. Fri, 21 Dec 2012 23:42:00 EST Cookies: You don't have to make the whole batch! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40000_cookies_you_dont_have_to_make_the_whole_batch If you are craving cookies but don't want to eat the whole batch, this secret is for you! Next time you make a batch of cookies, bake only 1 or 2 for each person in your household. Use a melon baller to scoop the rest of the dough onto a cookie sheet and then freeze it on the sheet. When frozen, store in a freezer bag (separate w/ wax paper) & write the time to bake and oven temp on the front. You can bake 1 or 2 at a time by adding 2 minutes to the total baking time! Sun, 2 Dec 2012 08:37:00 EST Fruit Smoothie Freezer Packs! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39993_fruit_smoothie_freezer_packs Each week, I buy 3 fresh bananas, plus one bag each of frozen mangoes, pineapple, strawberries, blueberries and raspberries. Then I divide these up into 6 baggies, each containing 1/2 of a banana and 1/4 c. of each other kind of fruit. I store the baggies in the freezer and in the morning, take one out, put it in the blender with 1c. of almond milk and 1 c. of warm water. I blend it for a quick & healthy smoothie breakfast for me and my husband! Fri, 30 Nov 2012 11:36:00 EST Homemade Soup!!!! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39960_homemade_soup Save some left over turkey and freeze it until your ready to make soup!!!!!! Sun, 25 Nov 2012 09:58:00 EST Lemon Juice http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39853_lemon_juice If you need only a few drops of lemon juice, just prick a lemon with a fork and squeeae. That way you can use the rest of the lemon for zest, etc. Sun, 4 Nov 2012 05:44:00 EST Oatmeal Doesn't Equal Sweet http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39812_oatmeal_doesnt_equal_sweet You do not have to make sweet oatmeal in the mornings. This morning I had Bacon Egg and Cheese Oatmeal. <br><br>1/2 c Oatmeal<br>1c. water<br>1 egg<br>Pepper to taste<br>Microwave high 3-5 minutes ( watch because this boils over so quickly on me)<br><br>Add 1/2 TBSP Bacon <br>1/2 TBSP shredded cheese or feta ( I used Kraft shredded Queso Blanco this morning)<br><br>Let this sit to allow the oatmeal to thicken and stir it all together. <br><br>Approximately 300 calories and protein! <em>4</e... Thu, 25 Oct 2012 13:14:00 EST 1/8 Cup = 2 Tbsp http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39777_18_cup_2_tbsp Did you know that 1/8 cup equals 2 Tablespoons? Many Coffee Measures are the same amount. Check yours, and see if you can turn it into a multi-purpose tool!<br>This tidbit can save you some time when you're cooking. Thu, 18 Oct 2012 12:02:00 EST Savory Soup and Stew Secret http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39762_savory_soup_and_stew_secret When making stews, curry meat and soups, stir in a Frozen 10 ounce Block of Cooked Squash for unusual delicious taste, and fiber. It blends right in to beef, turkey, lamb, pork, and chicken Stews, Tomato based anything, Curries, and Soups. What a delicious difference for hardly any calories! Sun, 14 Oct 2012 09:26:00 EST alternatives to oil when cooking http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39728_alternatives_to_oil_when_cooking Instead of olive or other oil, use vermouth, broth or water. If you can't do without some oil and have to watch cholesterol, use coconut oil. Flax seed oil is also good if you need oil for salad dressing or other cold/room temp recipes. Flax seed oil doesn't do well when heated. Wed, 10 Oct 2012 01:45:00 EST Cook a meal in the slower cooker and have leftovers for lunch http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39726_cook_a_meal_in_the_slower_cooker_and_have_leftovers_for_lunch Cooking a meal in the crockpot on Sunday/ Monday gives you an inexpensive dinner as well as leftovers for lunch. Tue, 9 Oct 2012 19:17:00 EST Maple Flakes http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39646_maple_flakes I love Maple flakes. They taste great on my oatmeal. You can also add it to yogurt, sprinkle it on fresh fruit or berries. Add a small amount to sweeten cream or flavor your stir-fry. A small amount goes a long way. <br><br>The serving size is 2 teaspoons that are only 10 flavor pack calories. I rarely add more than a 1 teaspoon to my oatmeal. <em>4</em> Sun, 30 Sep 2012 20:52:00 EST FIXING MASHED POATOES http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39622_fixing_mashed_poatoes When i fix mashed potatoes i use chicken bullion and not milk or butter in them , the bullion gives then a better flavor and no salt i do use pepper , <em>4</em> Wed, 26 Sep 2012 22:08:00 EST Stop Throwing out spinnach/lettuce? http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39617_stop_throwing_out_spinnachlettuce I have saved so much $$ by just putting the spinach in a plastic food storage lidded container with a paper towel on the bottom and another on top of the produce! Keeps up to 2 weeks! Works on sliced bell pprs too! Dry off the inside of the lid each time you open and use some of the contents. It's the water/wetness that spoils the produce before you have time to use it all. Amazing. Wed, 26 Sep 2012 00:20:00 EST chicken broth http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39607_chicken_broth I cook beans and peas in low sodium /99% fat free chicken broth. Sun, 23 Sep 2012 20:01:00 EST Easy Corn on the Cob http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39601_easy_corn_on_the_cob I tried out the method for cooking corn on the cob recommended by a friend... and boy is it a winner. You cook the corn in the microwave. Just put the corn in the microwave oven right in the husk and zap it for 4 minutes per cob. Take it out (use an oven mitt.. it will be HOT), cut off the end (where it was attached to the stalk) and then just shake the corn out of the husk. It will slide out without a problem and NO SILK attached. It was yummy too.. no fuss... no mess. <br><br> <em>104... Fri, 21 Sep 2012 23:27:00 EST Mac and cheese http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39550_mac_and_cheese I'm a huge mac and cheese eater, which pretty much does nothing for me. I've learned to throw in veggies and use half the cheese sauce to make more of a lite, spring pasta. Wed, 12 Sep 2012 07:15:00 EST Cook or bake less often. http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39546_cook_or_bake_less_often So, I know this sounds crazy, but I've found I'm better able to stay on track when I cook less frequently. I'm an excellent baker and have a hard time not eating the cookies, rolls, and breads of my labors. Baking less means I eat the veggies in the house, not all those calorie-laden carbs. Tue, 11 Sep 2012 23:33:00 EST Quick salads http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39495_quick_salads Making a side salad can take a lot of time. Instead, purchase a cheap compartmentalized serving tray with a lid (less than $5 at Walmart), cut up your lettuce and a few veggies of your choice and keep them in the fridge in this serving tray. Mon, 10 Sep 2012 18:01:00 EST Does Brown Bag Popcorn Work? http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39454_does_brown_bag_popcorn_work How many places have you read that you can take a lunch sack and popcorn kernals and make your own DIY microwave popcorn? I never believed it - but it's true! Kernals in a brown bag, fold the top a few times and pop for about 2.5 minutes - today I topped mine with feta and smoked paprika! YUM! Mon, 3 Sep 2012 19:10:00 EST Granola flavor without all the calories http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39449_granola_flavor_without_all_the_calories Instead of having a cup of granola which is 600 calories have a .75 cup serving of bran flakes with two Tablespoons of granola and you get the taste plus save over 400 calories. Check out my modified Alton Brown SP recipe it is really good. I have also started adding chia seeds to to granola and bran cereal to up the protein and fiber. Sun, 2 Sep 2012 23:21:00 EST "Frosting" an Avocado Half http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39436_frosting_an_avocado_half A whole avocado may be too much for 1 meal. How to keep the second half from turning brown? "Frost" it with Greek yogurt! The thick yogurt creates an airtight layer, and the avocado stays fresh, green and delicious--ready to eat as a healthy "frosted" snack, or to be mashed up for yogurt-based guacamole. To make it even more elegant, sprinkle the "frosting" with dill weed or paprika. Fri, 31 Aug 2012 21:33:00 EST Easy, Breezy Clean-up Routine http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39416_easy_breezy_cleanup_routine The first thing I do (learned from my mother) is to fill my sink half-full of hot water and detergent. That way I can clean up as I go while items are fresh and keep my work space free of items no longer in use. <em>306</em> Tue, 28 Aug 2012 12:52:00 EST Skip social eating http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39414_skip_social_eating Telling my husband not to cook or wait for me and instead suggest to eat salads together. Tue, 28 Aug 2012 09:04:00 EST Celery storage http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39410_celery_storage When you buy celery, try taking it out of the plastic bag, rinsing it, and replacing it putting the leafy end in first. That way you can pull the root end out an inch or two, cut off as many stalks as you need and slide the rest back to the bag easily. Mon, 27 Aug 2012 23:15:00 EST Importance of clean pots & pans http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39407_importance_of_clean_pots_pans It's been almost 2 months that I haven't dragged my family to any fast food chain or restaurant due to my unpreparedness. By cleaning my pots & pans IMMEDIATELY after each use, I can attack my kitchen with eagerness & cook healthier meals over and over. Mon, 27 Aug 2012 00:51:00 EST Keep Toss Salad Fresh Longer Use A Silicon Veggie Steamer http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39382_keep_toss_salad_fresh_longer_us_silicon_veggie_steamer I make a big bowl of toss salad and store the left overs in a bowl that has a silicon steamer pressed into the bottom. The steamer I have has little silicon legs so any water that drips off of the salad ends up below the steamer and the leaves stay fresh longer. Wed, 22 Aug 2012 21:07:00 EST Make Your Own Coffee Pods http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39357_make_your_own_coffee_pods If you have a coffee maker that uses single use coffee pods and you're having a hard time finding them as I am or just find them too expensive...make your own. I found tea bags (no tea, just the bags) at Whole Foods (100 for $4.99). They are larger than the single tea bags so I trimmed the bag a bit. Open the bag and spoon in 4 tbsp of coffee and fold over and staple at the fold. I made 40 pods for $6.57 or 17 cents each. Mon, 20 Aug 2012 00:13:00 EST Keep Salad Greens Crisp http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39356_keep_salad_greens_crisp Making your salad ahead is a time saver and keeping the greens fresh and crisp is easy. Wet a few paper towels with cold water then squeeze out the excess. Lay the paper towels over the salad and add a few ice cubes to keep cool. To serve just take the paper towels off and discard. Your salad will be nice and crisp. Sun, 19 Aug 2012 23:53:00 EST Use less sugar http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39342_use_less_sugar When cooking and baking I reduce the amount of sugar in the recipe down at least a third. Some recipes can even be made with no sugar at all. I started doing this because I can not stand the taste of the artificial sweeteners. Fri, 17 Aug 2012 22:47:00 EST Hide Veggies in meat loaf http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39341_hide_veggies_in_meat_loaf Saute onions, mushrooms, finely minced carrots til brown then mix with ground beef or turkey along with seasonings, rolled oats and an egg. This is a great way to stretch the meat and sneak veggies into everyone's diet. We also like chopped jalapenos added to the sauted veggies. Fri, 17 Aug 2012 21:05:00 EST Cooking With Sweetners http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39340_cooking_with_sweetners Cooking with Equal Fri, 17 Aug 2012 17:49:00 EST Rinse your ground beef http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39324_rinse_your_ground_beef Studies show rinsing mince after cooking drastically reduces fat! See the link below for the facts. You can buy the less expensive mince and rinse it to get the same result as lean mince<br>http://www.foodsafety.wisc.edu/as<BR>sets/pdf_files/reducing%20fat%20in%20g<BR>round%20beef.pdf Thu, 16 Aug 2012 06:00:00 EST Mocha Coffee? http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39318_mocha_coffee Mocha Flavored Brew without the calories Wed, 15 Aug 2012 19:25:00 EST tomato soup http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39315_tomato_soup try adding dried basil too tomato soups for a zesty taste Wed, 15 Aug 2012 14:25:00 EST Brownies vs. Cookies http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39314_brownies_vs_cookies When asked to bring either cookies or brownies to a party or function, I bake brownies - one can't go 'missing' out of a pan without anyone noticing, the way a cookie out of a pile on a plate can. <br> <em>211</em> Wed, 15 Aug 2012 14:16:00 EST Beef http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39283_beef Let cooked roasts stand at room temperature 10-15 minutes before carving to let the juices settle. The meat will firm up for easier slicing. Wet your hands in cold water before mixing or shaping ground beef and the meat won't stick to them. Sat, 11 Aug 2012 17:07:00 EST Getting the "freshness" out of Meats http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39260_getting_the_freshness_out_of_poultry Try this before seasoning and cooking your meat or fish. To get the freshness out of your poultry or seafood place contents in a bowl fill with a little water and squeeze a lemon or lime (juice) in it let sit for 5 mins and rinse. IF you dont have lemon use 1/2 cup flour make sure the water is covering your meat before adding flour. Use your hands to break down the lumps in the water and mix your meat. Rinse well & You can now season your meat and cook. Fri, 10 Aug 2012 12:36:00 EST