Healthy Recipes - Snacks & Dressings

Easy Garlicky Salad Dressing

Garlic Dressing - Healthy Recipe


1 cup extra virgin olive oil
½ cup balsamic vinegar
1 tsp salt
1 ½ tsp pepper
7-10 cloves of garlic, minced


Mix all ingredients in a jar and shake.  

Garlic is a useful way to bring out the flavors of other healthy foods, like vegetables. Enjoy this dressing over your favorite cooked vegetables or salad!

Garlic has been found to reduce cholesterol and blood pressure, improve circulation and immune function, and lower overall cancer risk. Based on population studies, the National Cancer Institute concludes that eating both raw and cooked garlic might help reduce the risk of colorectal cancer.  Not bad for something that tastes so good.  

  • Garlic. National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health. November 30, 2016.
  • High Cholesterol and Complementary Health Practices: What the Science Says. National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health. 2010.
  • Cholesterol-Lowering Supplements May Be Helpful. Mayo Clinic. October 3, 2015.
  • Garlic and Cancer Prevention. National Cancer Institute. January 22, 2008.

Balsamic Berries


Prep Time: 10 min
Level of Difficulty: Easy
Makes 4 servings

This is a very simple recipe that deserves repeating. During strawberry season, use fresh berries. The recipe will work with frozen berries, although the texture will be different.
This recipe uses slightly more balsamic vinegar than other similar recipes to produce additional marinade, which can be used to make a delightful salad dressing.


3 cups sliced fresh strawberries (about 3 baskets or 3 pints)
3 tablespoons aged balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon Splenda, or equivalent amount of your favorite sugar substitute
Optional but highly recommended:
Sprinkling of freshly ground black pepper
1 or 2 fresh mint leaves, chopped chiffonade-style (see our Easy Tip below)


In a bowl, combine berries with the balsamic vinegar and Splenda. Toss gently. Cover and leave at room temperature for 30 minutes or refrigerate for one or two hours. Stir occasionally, if possible.

Serving Suggestions

  • Spoon berries into elegant parfait glasses or dessert bowls. Layer berries with cottage cheese, plain yogurt or a mixture of both for a more filling dessert or light breakfast. Top with slivered almonds.
  • You can make a delicious salad by tossing the berries along with all of the marinade with a salad mix of chopped spinach, arugula, red onions and sliced mushrooms.
  • Save the leftover marinade and use as a tasty salad dressing.

Easy Tip:
An easy way to chop leafy herbs or greens is to use the chiffonade method, which produces neat and decorative narrow strips. Neatly stack two or more leaves on top of one another, then roll them up tightly like a cigar. Starting at the very tip of your herbal “cigar,” make thin slices along the roll with a sharp chef’s knife, or use scissors to cut the roll into several narrow strips.

Nutrition at a Glance (per serving)

Calories: 45
Total fat: 0g
Saturated fat:0g
Carbohydrate: 10g
Dietary fiber: 3g
Protein: 1g

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Breakfast Popovers with Parmesan


Prep Time: 10 min.
Cook Time: 30 min. (Total time will vary with appliance and setting.)
Level of Difficulty: Easy


½ cup liquid egg substitute
1¼ cups whole grain flour
1 cup + 2 tablespoons fat-free milk
1 tablespoon butter, melted
3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese


Preheat the oven to 375°F. Coat 8 custard cups or popover-pan cups with cooking spray. Whisk the egg substitute in a medium bowl. Add the flour, milk and butter, and whisk until the ingredients are combined. Stir in the cheese. Evenly divide the batter among the prepared cups. Place the cups on a large baking sheet.Bake for 30 minutes, or until the popovers are puffed and golden. Remove the popovers from the cups and serve hot.

For variety, you can use other cheeses, such as freshly grated Romano or Asiago cheese, in place of the Parmesan.

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Cheesy Artichoke Dip


Prep Time: 10 min
Cook Time: 30 min (Total time will vary with appliance and setting.)
Level of Difficulty: Easy
Makes about 2½ cups, or 10 servings


½ cup artichoke hearts (canned or frozen without oil)
1 cup low-fat cottage cheese
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
3—4 tablespoons grated parmesan or Romano cheese
1 teaspoon prepared mustard
A few drops of hot sauce, to taste
¼–½ cup diced pimentos or roasted red peppers


In a blender or food processor, purée the cottage cheese; add mayonnaise, parmesan or Romano cheese and mustard and blend. Add artichokes and purée. Mix in the pimentos. Place in a microwave-safe bowl, cover with plastic wrap and heat for 2 minutes. Remove cover carefully. Stir and heat for another 1 or 2 minutes until cheese is bubbly. Add hot sauce, additional cheese and salt as needed.
The dip can be baked in a 325° oven for about 30 minutes. Serve the dip with raw vegetables such as bell peppers and cucumbers, or with crackers, pita chips or tortilla strips. Or make a wrap with a whole grain tortilla, some of the dip, shredded lettuce and assorted vegetables.

Add minced green onion or chives. Add shredded crab or chopped baby clams.

Nutrition at a Glance (per ¼ cup serving)

Calories: 70
Total fat 3g
Saturated fat 0g
Total Carbohydrate 4g
Protein 4g

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Prawns With Pesto Saucerisotto-with-peas-prawns

Prep Time: 10 min
Cook Time: 6 min (Total time will vary with appliance and setting.)
Level of Difficulty: Easy


Lemon Marinade
Makes about 1 cup
Juice of a lemon (approximately ½ cup) or part lemon juice and part dry white wine to equal ½ cup
2 garlic cloves, crushed
¼ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon prepared mustard

Prawns With Pesto Sauce
Sixteen prawns or jumbo shrimp, peeled and de-veined (about 1 pound)
2 cups pesto sauce (homemade from our “Special Summer Pesto” recipe or store-bought*)
Optional: lemon or lime wedges


In a medium-sized glass or ceramic bowl, whisk together all the ingredients. Use marinade immediately or cover with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for up to three days. Make the pesto according to the “Special Summer Pesto” recipe. (Pesto should be at room temperature for serving, so remove it from the refrigerator ahead of time if you have prepared or bought it in advance). Combine the prawns and the marinade in a zippered plastic bag. Seal the bag and refrigerate for one hour.

Prepare the barbecue by heating coals or preheating a gas grill or broiling pan if using the broiler. Lightly oil the cooking grate or broiling pan. Drain the prawns and discard the marinade. Grill the prawns on the grate set about 4 inches over glowing coals, or on your gas grill for approximately 3 minutes on each side or until they are cooked through. (Alternatively, the prawns may be broiled on the oiled rack of a broiler pan set about 4 inches from the heat source under a preheated broiler for approximately 4 minutes per side). Transfer the prawns to dinner plates, allowing four per serving. Garnish with lemon or lime wedges, if desired. Serve with the pesto sauce on the side.

Nutrition at a Glance (per serving)

Calories: 230
Total fat: 11g
Saturated fat: 2g
Total carbohydrate: 6g
Dietary fiber: 2g
Protein: 28 g

* If using store-bought pesto sauce, consider mixing it in a food processor with a bag of washed and dried fresh spinach to add extra vitamins, minerals and fiber while decreasing the amount of fat, which is usually quite high in store-bought pesto.

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The Berry Best Smoothieberrysmoothie

Prep Time: 5 min
Level of Difficulty: Easy
Makes two servings
Serving size: approximately 1 cup


½ cup low-fat or low-carbohydrate milk, soymilk or rice milk
6 ounces silken tofu (½ package) or 6 ounces plain low-fat yogurt, or a combination
1 cup frozen blueberries (do not thaw)
½ small (6") banana
½ teaspoon almond extract
1 tablespoon flax meal
½ teaspoon Splenda or preferred sugar substitute
Optional: protein powder


Place all ingredients in a blender, cover and blend until smooth and creamy.

There are many things to consider when choosing a protein powder, such as:

  • Amount of protein: Read labels carefully; the serving size may be in tablespoons or in scoopfuls (scoops are provided in the containers).
  • Type of protein: Whey protein (derived from milk) is well tolerated by many people and has an added benefit of enhancing the immune system. Soy protein is beneficial for heart health and the kidneys and for women going through menopause. It may also help prevent breast and prostrate cancer. However, if you have a history of breast cancer, your physician might discourage the use of soy-based foods or protein powders. Milk and egg protein powders are also available.
  • Taste: Some powders use all-natural flavorings like pure vanilla for better flavor.
  • Texture: You'll want a powder that mixes easily.
  • Amount of lactose: It's important to check this if you are sensitive to this milk sugar.
  • Type of sweetener: A fruit smoothie usually needs only the "isolated" (pure) protein powder, since the fruit will sweeten it; or, you can add a sweetener to your taste. You can also purchase protein powders that contain sugar, fructose or honey or that contain artificial sweeteners such as Splenda (sucralose) or Equal (aspartame). Some also contain stevia, a natural plant-based sweetener, which is calorie- and carbohydrate-free.
  • Price: Comparing prices can be tricky, since the quantities and portion sizes vary.

Nutrition at a Glance (per serving)

Calories: 140
Total fat: 5g
Saturated fat: 1g
Total carbohydrate: 19g
Dietary fiber: 4g
Protein: 9g
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Tomato Stuffed with Salmonstuffed-tomatoes-2

Prep Time: 15 min
Cook Time: 15 min (Total time will vary with appliance and setting.)
Level of Difficulty: Easy
Makes 4 Servings


4 large tomatoes
1 can of boneless, skinless salmon or tuna
2 hard-boiled eggs, chopped
1/3 cup minced green or red onion
1 small cucumber, peeled, seeded and cut into small pieces
½ to 1 sweet bell pepper, minced (about 1/3 cup)
¼ cup mayonnaise
1 teaspoon prepared mustard
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon dried dill weed or 1 tablespoon minced fresh dill
Freshly ground pepper, salt (or salt-free seasoning) to taste
Optional: sliced avocado, minced cilantro, capers; chopped fresh fruits such as grapes, mango, pineapple, papaya; fruit and tomato salsas; shelled edamame (soybeans)


Cut a thin slice from the top of the tomatoes, scoop out the insides and discard or reserve for another use. Drain the tomato shells upside down on paper towels. In a large bowl, combine salmon or tuna, eggs, onions, cucumber and pepper. Add mayonnaise, mustard, lemon juice and seasonings, and mix.
Stuff the mixture into each tomato shell and serve. Serve any extra salad on a bed of leafy greens, or use it in a pita or wrap sandwich.

2 lean meat, 2 vegetable, 3 fat

Nutrition at a Glance (per serving)

Calories: 240
Total fat: 16g
Saturated fat: 3g
Carbohydrate: 11g
Dietary fiber: 3g
Protein: 16g