Rosemary Chicken and Tomato-Avocado Salsa

Rosemary Chicken
Serves 4

4 chicken breasts, 6 ounces each, boneless skinless
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoongs red wine vinegar
2 cloves garlic, crushed and minced
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary crushed, or 1 tsp dried  (I used 1 tablespoon Penzey’s Bouquet Garni.)

1.  Place chicken in a heavy-duty freezer bag, and pound with a meat mallet until approximately 1/2 inch thick.  Do this one at a time, then place the chicken in a second ziplock bag. (The first bag may have holes from the mallet.)
2.  Mis remaining ingredients together, pour over chicken.  Toss in the marinade to coat.  Place chicken in refrigerator for at 30-60 minutes.
3.  Heat a non-stick skillet, and spray with cooking spray. Place the chicken in the skillet over medium-hiigh heat for 3-4 minutes on the first side, and 3 minutes on the second.
4.  Serve with  Tomato-Avocado Salsa and roasted vegetables.

Nutritional data:
Calories:       307
Fat:               16.5g
Sat fat:            3.8g
Chol:               98mg
Sodium:          62mg
Carbs:              1g
Fiber:               0g
Protein:          38g

Tomato-Avocado Salsa

Serves 4, approximately 2/3 cup each.

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon dried rosemary (or Bouquet Garni)
1 tsp Dijon Mustard
1 ripe avocado, peeled, and diced
2 cups cherry tomatoes (about 24), cut in half
2 tablespoons crumbled feta cheese

1.  Whisk together first four ingredients.
2.  Gently stir in the remaining ingredients.
3.  Make this while the chicken cooks, as its texture is best when fresh.

Nutritional data:
Calories:        126
Fat:                10.9g
Sat fat:             2.6g
Chol:              8.3mg
Sodium:         112mg
Carbs:             6.3g
Fiber:              3.1g
Protein:           2.6g

Roasted Vegetables

Serves 4

Fresh vegetables, your preference.  I have used Brussel sprouts, onion, tomato, mini-bell peppers, cauliflower, broccoli, leeks, mushrooms and asparagus.  (If you use cauliflower, pre-cook it in the microwave for 3-4 minutes.)

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
2 cloves garlic, crushed and minced
Black pepper, and any spices you like.

1.  Fill a one gallon ziplock bag with your preferred veggies.
2.  Whisk together other ingredients, and pour over veggies.  Toss to coat.  Let sit for 10 minutes.
3.  While the veggies are resting, preheat oven to 450F
4.  Place veggies in a 9×13 pan.  Place in oven for a total of 30 minutes.
5.  Toss veggies after 15 minutes.
6.  Remove when the veggies are tender/crunchy and beginning to brown.

Nutritional data (will vary slightly based on your choice of vegetables):
Calories:       126
Fat:                10.g
Sat fat:           1.6g
Chol:                0mg
Sodium:          11mg
Carbs:          12.4g
Fiber:            4.7g
Protein:            5g

Salmon and Spinach Pasta Toss

Salmon Fillets
1 pound salmon fillets (4 ounces each)

Season the salmon with your preferred seasoning.  Heat a non-stick skillet, pan fry until cooked, about 3 minutes per side.

Nutritional data, per serving:
Calories:      190
Fat:               9.0g
Sat fat:          1.5g
Chol:            70mg
Sodium:        50mg
Carbs:            0g
Fiber:             0g
Protein:        24g

Spinach Pasta Toss (makes 6 servings, approximately 1 cup each)

1 tablespon olive oil
1/2 medium onion, minced
Black pepper, dried oregano, and dried basil to preference
3 cloves garlic, crushed and minced
2 cups whole wheat penne pasta
1 cup water
6 ounces V8 (low sodium) juice
2 ounces white wine
4 tablespoons sun-dried tomatoes
6 ounces raw baby spinach
2 tablespoons (6 teaspoons) romano cheese

1.  Heat olive oil in a large skillet (10-12 inches).  Add onion.  Saute for 3-4 minutes over medium-high heat, until it begins to turn translucent.
2.  Add garlic, and spices.  Saute for another minute.
3.  Carefully pour V8, water and wine.  Turn heat up, and bring to a near boil. Add pasta, stir and return to a boil.
4.  When boiling, reduce heat to simmer, cover and let cook for 10 minutes or until the pasta cooked to your preference.
5.  Bring heat back to medium. Add half the spinach.  Toss pasta and spinach until the spinach begins to wilt.  Add remaining spinach, and toss until the spinach is wilted.
6.  Serve, with 1 tsp romano cheese on each portion.

Nutritional data, per serving of the Spinach Pasta Toss:
Calories:      159
Fat:               3.7g
Sat fat:          0.7g
Chol:            1.2mg
Sodium:       120mg
Carbs:         25.6g
Fiber:           4.4g
Protein:        5.7g

Veggie Hash with Eggs

Veggie Hash
Makes 2-4 serving, depending on how hungry you are.  The picture shows two servings, on a 10″ plate.

8 ounces shredded potatoes
1 bunch (approxmately 1 pound) fresh asparagus, cut into  1/2 inch pieces
8 ounces fresh mushrooms, sliced
1 medium onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, crushed and minced
1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
Black pepper to taste
Seasoning of your choice (I used Penzey’s Sunny Paris.)

1.  Heat a large non-stick skillet. Add 1 tsp olive oil, the asparagus, mushrooms.  Saute over medium-high heat until the mushrooms begin to brown.
2.  Remove veggies from heat, set aside, cover to keep warm.
3.  Add the remaining olive oil, and over medium-high heat, add the onions.  Saute for 2-3 minutes, and add the garlic, saute for an additional minute.
4.  Add the shredded potatoes.  Gently toss (to prevent mashing the potatoes) until the onions begin to brown (another 3-4 minutes.)
5.  Return all veggies to skillet, toss to mix.
6.  Serve with eggs prepared as you like them.

Nutritional Data (for one serving of hash only, without the eggs):
Calories:  102
Fat:            3.8g
Sat fat:       0.6g
Chol:            0mg
Sodium:    163mg
Carbs:     14.7g
Fiber:        3.3g
Protein:     4.2g

Mushrooms and Beef in Cream Sauce

Mushroom and Beef in Cream Sauce
Makes 6 servings
12 ounces beef roast, cut into ½ inch cubes
16 ounces fresh mushrooms, sliced
1 medium onion, diced
1 garlic clove, crushed
4 ounces red wine
4 ounces water
8 Tablespoon (4 ounces) of reduced fat cream cheese
1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
3 cups uncooked whole wheat wide noodles
Prepare the pasta as directed on the label. While the pasta is cooking, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a non-stick skillet, saute the onion for 3-4 minutes, and then add the garlic and mushrooms.  Continue to cook over medium-high until everything is soft, approximately 3-5 minutes. Remove from skillet into a large bowl, set aside and keep warm.
Return the skillet to medium-high heat. When hot, carefully add all meat.  Season the meat with pepper as needed, stirring to brown all surfaces. When the meat is browned, add to the bowl containing the cooked mushrooms.
The skilled will probably have meat and mushroom residue adhering to the sides and bottom (also called fond.)  Pour the wine into the skillet, deglazing the pan.  Then add the cream cheese, return the skillet to medium heat and stir until the cheese has melted and is mixed with the wine.  Add the water and mix well.
Return the meat and mushrooms to the sauce, and stir to coat.
One serving is 1 cup pasta (or less) and 3/4 cup stroganoff.
Nutritional data (of the stroganoff):
Calories:               226
Fat:                       11.4g
Sat fat:                  4.4g
Cholesterol:       59.5mg
Sodium:               137mg
Carbs:                   6.7g
Fiber:                    1.1g
Protein:               20.8g
Nutritional data (of 1 cup of cooked pasta):
Calories:               180
Fat:                          1g
Sat fat:                  0.0g
Cholesterol:        0.0mg
Sodium:               15mg
Carbs:                   41g
Fiber:                    6.0g
Protein:                   8g

Green Salsa Chicken and Cumin Corn

Green Salsa Chicken
4 boneless-skinless chicken breasts, 5 ounce each (approx.)
8 tomatillos, husks removed
½ cup onion, sliced
1 cup diced bell peppers, any or all colors
4 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
Herb blend (ideally a southwestern spice blend)
1 lime
Cooking spray
Sprinkle chicken breasts with spice.  Place in preheated non-stick skillet.  Cook approximately 5 minutes per side. Remove from the skillet, cover and set aside.
Spray the skillet with cooking spray.  Place tomatillos, skin side down in skillet.  Do not stir, let them begin to lightly char (5 minutes over med-high heat) then flip over.  Let them continue to cook for additional 5 minutes.  When done, remove from skillet and roughly chop.  Place in a bowl.
In a separate small skillet, coat with cooking spray and add onion and diced pepper.  Cook until beginning to soften, then add to bowl of tomatillos.
Grate the lime to remove ½ tsp zest.  Squeeze lime to get 2 tablespoons juice.  Add juice and zest to tomatillo-pepper-onion mix.  Toss.
Serves 4 (1 chicken breast and approximately ¼ cup of salsa)
Nutritional data:
Calories:          183
Fat:                  9.8g
Sat fat:              2.6g
Cholesterol:     75mg
Sodium:           223mg
Carbs:              8.7g
Fiber:               2.4g
Protein:            17.3g
Cumin Corn
1 cup (5 ounces) frozen whole kernel corn, thawed
¼ cup onion, diced
¾ cup bell pepper, diced, any colors
2 tsp olive oil
¼ tsp ground cumin (or more, to taste)
Black pepper to taste
Serve 4 (1/2 cup portions)
1.       Heat non-stick skillet with 2 tsp olive oil.
2.      Add onion and bell pepper to oil.  Stir frequently, until heated through, and beginning to get tender.
3.      Add cumin and black pepper.  Stir in thawed corn.  Stir until the corn is beginning to get tender and is heated through.
Nutritional Data
Calories:      63
Fat:            2.8g
Sat fat:       0.3g
Chol:            0mg
Sodium:    1.9mg
Carbs:        8.6g
Fiber:         1.7g
Protein:     1.6g

Zucchini-Potato Pancakes

Make 4 pancakes, each about 4 inches
1 small (6 inch) zucchini, shredded, skin on (approximately 1 1/3 cup)
2/3 cup shredded cooked potatoes (approximately 5 ounces)
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
2 Tablespoons Parmesan cheese
1/8 tsp black pepper
1.  Gently mix together.
2.  Pre-heat a non-stick skillet over medium and spray with cooking spray.
3.  Divide batter into four portions (approximately 1/2 cup each.)
4.  Fry until the edges begin to brown (4-5 minutes).  Turn and continue until finished cooking.
Top with plain Greek yogurt, applesauce, or butter and maple syrup. Or serve at breakfast with a single fried egg on top of each pancake.

Nutritional Data:
Cal:  86
Fat:  3.3g
Sat Fat: 1.2g
Chol: 107.2mg
Sodium: 105.4mg
Carb: 8.7g
Fiber: 0.4g
Protein: 5mg

Mushroom-Herb Chicken and Potatoes Alfredo w/ Gruyere

Mushroom-Herb Chicken
4 boneless-skinless chicken breasts, 5 ounce each (approx.)
8 ounces brown (crimini) mushrooms, sliced
½ cup onion, sliced
¼ cup white wine
Herb blend (your preference)
Cooking spray
Place chicken breasts in a heavy duty ziplock storage bag, and pound flat (to ½ inch). Season with pepper and herb blend (both sides.)
In a large non-stick sauté pan, spray with cooking spray, heat over medium-high heat and place chicken in pan.  Cook for 5-6 minutes per side.  They should be nicely brown. Remove from pan, set aside.  Spray with cooking spray again, add onions. Saute for 1 minute, add mushrooms.  Saute another 2 minutes, add wine and return the chicken to the pan. Cover, and cook over medium for another 3 minutes.  Remove, serve topped with mushrooms.
Serves 4
Nutritional data:
Calories:          187
Fat:                  0.1g
Sat fat:                0g
Cholesterol:     80mg
Sodium:           94mg
Carbs:              4.6g
Fiber:               0.6g
Protein:          31.4g
Potatoes Alfredo with Gruyere
4 potatoes (1 pound) I like using Yukon Gold potatoes
½ cup prepared alfredo sauce
¼ cup milk (I used 2%)
¾ ounce gruyere cheese, shredded
Cooking spray
Preheat oven to 350F
Wash potatoes.  Slice thinly (with skins is my preference.) Place in bowl. Top with alfredo sauce and milk.  Stir together.
Spray small baking dish (1.5 quart round worked for me, as would an 8×8 baking pan) with non-stick spray. Layer potatoes.  Top with shredded gruyere.
Serves 4
Nutritional data:
Calories:          205
Fat:                  5.6g
Sat fat:             3.3g
Cholesterol:      26mg
Sodium:          233mg
Carbs:            33.5g
Fiber:               2.2g
Protein:            6.8g

Protein Pancakes

Protein Pancakes

My Protein Pancakes
Makes 2 servings of 4 pancakes. 
Mix together:
4 egg whites
1 tsp vanilla
1/3 unsweetened applesauce (or ½ cup canned pumpkin)
¼ c water
½ cup dry oatmeal (or ½ c Kellog’s All Bran)
½ tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
2 T milled flaxseed
1 scoop (4T) whey powder
Pour scant ¼ c onto non-stick skillet lightly oiled.  Turn when the batter starts to set (1-2 minutes over medium heat.)  This is thick batter, and bubbles will usually not form on the surface.
Serve with whipped cream, sautéed bananas, warm apple compote, peanut butter or Greek Yogurt.
Cal:  221 Fat:  5.1g  Sat Fat: 1g  Chol:  27  Sodium:  293.8mg  Carb:  23.8g  Fiber 5.1g  Protein:  21.3  (The nutritional data is using the applesauce and oatmeal version, and without any toppings.)
Note: in the first picture, the bananas are sauteed.  I put them in a non-stick skillet, without any oil or spray, over medium-high heat, and turned them while the pancakes were cooking.  That brings out the sugars and caramelizes them, and really makes the banana flavor pop.  The bananas were topped with whipped topping and cinnamon.  The second picture uses non-fat blueberry Greek yogurt and fresh blueberries to dress the pancakes.  The options are almost endless.

Breakfast Bakes

Protein Breakfast Bakes
All versions make 2 servings.  Mix ingredients together, pour into greased loaf pan (approximately 4”x8”).  All version bake at 350F for 14-18 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out dry.  Do not overbake.  Serve warm (or cold) with whipped cream, Greek yogurt, or maple syrup.  Can be kept in the refrigerator, covered, for up to a week.   (The flaxseed is optional, and is a great way to boost your Omega-3 fatty acid level.  When you use the flaxseed, one portion has 1.3 grams of O-3 fatty acids, which is approximately the same as 4 fish oil capsules!)
Peanut Butter Version       (not pictured)          
2 egg whites
1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
2 T peanut butter
½ c dried rolled oatmeal
1 scoop (4 Tbsp) vanilla protein powder
2 Tbspn milled flaxseeds
½ tsp baking powder
Cal: 232  Fat 11.9g, Sat Fat 2.2g, Chol 13.5mg, Sodium 311.1mg, Carb 22.5g, Fiber 8.4g, Protein 16g 

Nutella Version               
2 egg whites
1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
2 T Nutella
½ c dried rolled oatmeal
1 scoop (4 T) vanilla protein powder
2 Tbspn milled flaxseeds
1 tsp cinnamon
½ tsp baking powder
Cal: 305, Fat 9.1g, Sat Fat 2.6g, Chol 15mg, Sodium 203.5mg, Carb 33.1g, Fiber 5.6g, Protein 18.5 

Pumpkin Version                            
2 egg whites
1 tsp vanilla extract
½ cup canned, solid-pack pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
½ c dried rolled oatmeal
1 scoop (4 T) vanilla protein powder
2 T milled flaxseeds
1-2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
½ tsp baking powder
Cal: 214, Fat 5.4g, Sat Fat 1g, Chol 27mg, Sodium 150mg, Carb 23.3g, Fiber 6.8g, Protein 18.6g 

Banana Version             (not pictured)  
2 egg whites
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 very ripe banana, mashed
½ c dried rolled oatmeal
1 tsp cinnamon
1 scoop (4 T) vanilla protein powder
2 T milled flaxseeds
½ tsp baking powder
Cal: 259, Fat 3.8g, Sat Fat 0.9, Chol 27mg, Sodium 198mg, Carb 31.8g, Fiber 5.2, Protein 17.6g