Committing to healthier habits in the new year often starts in the kitchen. Adding better-for-you recipes to your arsenal is the start of a more nutrition-focused lifestyle, and whether you’re a true home chef or just learning the basics, these dishes can be the gateway to a healthier you.
From fresh spins on family night and quick solutions in a pinch to homemade lunches and satisfying salads, consider these delicious and nutritious ways to enhance your homemade meals in 2022.
A fresh take on family dinner
If your family gets stuck in a dinner routine rut, it can feel like you’re eating the same recipes over and over again.
However, this fresh and unique recipe for Cuban Chicken with Salsa Fresca might inspire you to think outside the culinary box and give your family members the satisfactory flavor they desire at dinnertime. With fresh ingredients and a wholesome flavor, this meal is perfect to add to your menu.
CUBAN CHICKEN WITH SALSA FRESCA
1 cup grapefruit juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons cumin
2 teaspoons paprika
1teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 1/4 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 cup grapefruit segments
½ jicama, cubed
½ red onion, chopped
¾ cup grapefruit juice
4 tablespoons olive oil
½ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1 jalapeno pepper, chopped
■ Heat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
■ In large bowl, mix grapefruit juice, oil, garlic powder, cumin, paprika and red pepper until combined. Add chicken to bowl and turn to coat. Refrigerate 30 minutes or longer.
■ To make salsa fresca: In medium bowl, mix grapefruit segments, jicama, red onion, grapefruit juice, olive oil, cilantro and jalapeno pepper until combined. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
■ Remove chicken from marinade. Place chicken in baking dish. Bake 25-30 minutes until chicken is cooked through.
■ Serve chicken with salsa fresca.
Take your salad from bland to bold
Step aside, boring salads. A new year and a healthier eating plan can include better-for-you greens and dressings that hit the spot.
Veggies roasted with aromatic spices served on Fresh Express 5-Lettuce Mix are drizzled with lemon tahini dressing in this Moroccan Roasted Vegetable Salad, a delicious vegetarian way to turn a bland meal into a bona fide delight. With green leaf lettuce, red leaf lettuce, butter lettuce, romaine and radicchio, the mix of greens offers a bold combination of textures and flavors for those who love variety and color.
MOROCCAN ROASTED VEGETABLE SALAD
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes
Lemon Tahini Dressing:
1/4 cup tahini
1/4 cup olive oil
3 tablespoons lemon juice
3 teaspoons maple syrup
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons cold water
nonstick cooking spray
6 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons ras el hanout or garam masala
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
4 sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into long wedges
4 whole large carrots, chopped
2 red bell peppers, cored and cut into 1-inch pieces
2 packages (6 ounces each) Fresh Express 5-Lettuce Mix
1 can (15 1/2 ounces) chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1/3 cup dried apricots, sliced
1/3 cup slivered almonds, toasted
2 tablespoons Italian parsley, chopped
■ To make lemon tahini dressing: In small bowl, whisk tahini, olive oil, lemon juice, maple syrup, Dijon mustard and salt. Add cold water; mix well. If dressing thickens, mix in more cold water.
■ Heat oven to 400 F. Spray two baking sheets with nonstick cooking spray.
■ In large bowl, mix olive oil, ras el hanout, salt and pepper. Add sweet potatoes; toss to coat. Transfer to first prepared baking sheet. Add carrots and peppers to leftover oil; toss to coat. Transfer to second prepared baking sheet. Bake 15-20 minutes, or until vegetables are tender. Let cool.
■ Arrange lettuce mix on four plates. Top each with sweet potatoes, carrots, red pepper, chickpeas, apricots and almonds. Drizzle with dressing and sprinkle with parsley.
A lean, nutritious lunch
Meal prepping is one of the most common strategies for improving eating habits, however, this tactic is often focused primarily on nutritious breakfasts and family dinners. Don’t let lunch go by the wayside; you can skip the fast food breaks by opting for a recipe you can make quickly at home.
Made with nutritious potatoes low in calories, high in fiber and a good source of vitamin B6, potassium, vitamin C and antioxidants, a Turkey-Potato Wrap provides a simple solution for swapping out saltier foods for a lean lunch. By making four at a time in just half an hour, lunch is served for most of your work week to help save time on busy mornings while adding vitamins, nutrients and antioxidants to your afternoon meal.
Recipe courtesy of Wisconsin Potatoes
3/4 pound russet potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 tablespoon water
1 tablespoon canola oil
3/4 pound ground lean turkey
1 large carrot, shredded
1/3 cup sliced green onions with tops
1 can (8 ounces) tomato sauce
2/3 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning or basil
salt, to taste
pepper, to taste
4 large whole-wheat or high-fiber tortillas
light sour cream (optional)
■ Place potatoes in microwave-safe bowl; sprinkle with water. Cover, venting one corner. Microwave on high 5-8 minutes until potatoes are tender.
■ In large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, heat oil. Add and break up turkey; cook 5 minutes, tossing occasionally. Mix in carrot; cook 2 minutes. Add potatoes and onions; toss and cook 2 minutes. Reduce heat to medium; mix in tomato sauce, cheese and Italian seasoning.
■ Cook, stirring occasionally, 4-5 minutes until mixture is hot and most sauce is absorbed. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. On work surface, lay out tortillas. Place 3/4 cup hot turkey mixture on each; fold and roll for burritos.
■ Cut in halves. Serve each with sour cream, if desired.
Eating well when you’re short on time
Committing to a better eating plan doesn’t change the fact there are simply times when a hectic schedule calls for a quick solution.
When you need an easy-to-make lunch or dinner, opt for this Loaded Smoked Salmon Rice Bowl that takes just 5 minutes for a satisfying meal. With Minute’s fully cooked Ready to Serve Brown Rice, it’s easy to add whole grains to your diet even when you’re short on time.
One cup of cooked brown rice is equal to two servings of whole grains, making it a nutritious option when time is of the essence.
Packaged in convenient, single-serve, BPA-free cups, the brown rice cups provide a quick, easy solution for dishes from breakfast to dessert. Ready in just 1 minute, they’re non-GMO, gluten free and cholesterol free with no preservatives.
LOADED SMOKED SALMON RICE BOWL
Prep time: 4 minutes
Cook time: 1 minute
1 cup Minute Ready to Serve Brown Rice
2 ounces smoked salmon
1/2 cup julienned cucumber
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon everything bagel seasoning mix
■ Heat rice according to package directions.
■ Top rice with smoked salmon and cucumbers. Drizzle with soy sauce and sprinkle with seasoning mix.