Black Bean Soup with Red Miso and Ginger

Traditional Brazilian cuisine (caldinho de feijão) with herbs on a green napkin and a traversed spoon metal spoon.Loaded with probiotic goodness, red miso (not white), a Japanese cooking staple made from fermented soy beans, is the star here (for more flavor and texture). At just 179 calories per serving, 34 g carbs, zero cholesterol, 4 g of total fat (none saturated), 11 g of fiber, and 9 g of protein, use this soup as a starter, or as a main meal with a salad, and whole-grain sourdough bread.

Note: Skip any added salt, as the miso is salty enough (743 mg). Monitor your salt intake that day, to stay under the recommended daily sodium limit of 2,300 mg (1,500, if you have high blood pressure).

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Creamy Ginger-Lemon Salad Dressing

Homemade asian peanut dressing with black sesame seedsThis light, Asian-influenced dressing gets its creaminess from Greek yogurt, and its tang from the blend of lemon and ginger. It’s an easy, quick, and tasty paring with any mixed greens combo, with just 33 calories, 1 g of carbohydrate, zero cholesterol, 2.5 g of total fat, 2 g of protein, and 2 g of sugar. (And why couldn’t you drizzle it on chicken or seafood as well?!)

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Fruit and Fresh Herb Sparkler

Seltzer Drink with Fresh cut fruitThink of this drink as a bit of bubbly, without the buzz. It’s a “mocktail” that’s perfect for someone on a restricted diet, who may be pregnant, or who just wants something refreshing without alcohol added. Of course you could add sparkling wine, but by using club soda or seltzer instead, even the kids can make a toast! Mix in whatever fruit that you like, and get creative. This sparkler comes in at 35 calories, with only 9 g of carbohydrates, zero cholesterol, zero fat, 20 mg of sodium, and just 6 g of sugar. And it’s the perfect “anytime” alternative to sugary soda. Cheers!

 

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Potato Soup With Chicken and Veggies

Chicken Cream Soup

Nothing warms you up like soup, and this hearty combination of chicken, potatoes, rice, and veggies hits the spot! At just 224 calories per serving, 42 g carbs, 7 mg of cholesterol, 3 g of fat, 6 g of fiber, and 8 g of protein (along with 855 mg of potassium), make it for a weeknight or weekend dinner. You can later spoon up some leftovers (if you’ve got any!) for lunch the next day.

 

 

 

 

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Very Lemony Chicken

IHomemade Lemon and Herb Chickent’s chicken tonight! And lemon is the star ingredient, with all of its citrusy brightness and flavor. You’ll love the simplicity of this dish, to be paired with your choice of vegetables, or maybe a blended rice. (It’s also a match for garden potato salad!) Coming in at a low 154 calories, with 63 mg cholesterol, just 6 g total fat, and 202 mg of sodium, here’s your go-to chicken recipe, anytime.

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Garden Potato Salad

Potato salad with mayonnaise and spring onion, selective focus

Why does potato salad have to be only for picnics? (It doesn’t!) Here’s a lighter-yet-still-tasty version that you’ll love as an anytime side dish — and it’s only 151 calories per one cup serving. This one will please a crowd, be it for potluck or the family table. (It’s also make-ahead fast and stores well.) Delish with only 1 g fat, 2 mg cholesterol, and 118 sodium.

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Apricot Pine Nut Couscous

couscous mixed with chopped dried apricots and fresh parsley

Get your grain on, with this perfect side for roasted chicken, turkey, or baked fish, and pair it with a favorite vegetable. The pine nuts provide the crunch (but you could also substitute chopped almonds).* The quick 10-minute prep time gives you more time away from the stove (and you won’t sweat the calories).

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Pumpkin Apple Protein Bars

Organic homemade granola bars on rustic wooden background - Healthy vegetarian snack

Here’s a delightfully chewy protein bar for the morning commute, to fuel-up for the gym, or to re-fuel after that workout (but it’s really a healthy, go-to snack or tea-time treat any time of day). And take note for the holidays: This one’s a simply-sweet gift that you can make for friends, too, so get your cellophane bags and ribbons ready! (These stack nicely cut into 2-inch square portions.)

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Barbeque Chickpea Sliders

Vegan mini burger made of chickpeas

Veggie sliders! Who knew? This tasty and nutritious alternative to beef or chicken will still wow the crowd gathered to watch the Big Game. (Your crew may even feel light enough for some backyard touch football by halftime!) Serve them up on a platter, and let ‘em choose their toppings, from avocado tomato, and barbeque sauce, to red onion, and more.

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