Category Archives: hors d'oeuvres

Creamy Parmesan Spinach Dip

Happy Wednesday!

It’s snowing just about everywhere in the US it seems! When I walked out of work yesterday (in ballet flats!) a good 4″ of snow had fallen. Needless to say, the 20 steps to my car lead to near frost bite. Brrrrr!!! But despite this weather, the show must go on. I have lab rounds at a clinic that’s 50 miles north of home and then I will double back to go teach tonight. It’s probably fair to say I’ll be commuting most of the day. Fabulous.

Though, sitting in the car sounds okay right about now. I decided to shovel for my workout last night. I went out with intentions of just just do the sidewalks, but that only took about 10 minutes. So I decided to shovel the DRIVEWAY! Yep, you read that correctly. And the best part: we have a brand new snow blower! I’m walking like a hunch-back today, and sore is the understatement of the century, but it was a KILLER workout! I wonder what the neighbors are saying… ūüėČ

On to a lightened up classic! This recipe contains light mayonnaise, which I must admit, I love. I know a lot of people don’t like mayonnaise, but I love the stuff (Hellmann’s mayonnaise, please! And no Miracle Whip! Ew!). It’s not like I use it often, but I love it in recipes where it belongs: chicken salad, tuna salad, dips, etc. I recall several years ago brainstorming summer job options with my sister-in-law — one of her requirements for a job was that it didn’t involve mayonnaise!! We had a good laugh over that one. I have a terrible memory, but I’ll never forget it! ūüėČ

Creamy Parmesan Spinach Dip from Gina’s Weight Watcher Recipes

10 oz frozen chopped spinach, thawed and excess liquid squeezed out
1/2 cup light sour cream
1/4 cup + 1 Tbsp light mayonnaise
1/3 cup Parmigiano Reggiano
1/4 cup scallion, chopped
fresh pepper to taste


Combine all the ingredients in a medium bowl. Can be made one day in advance and stored in the refrigerator. Remove from refrigerator 30 minutes before serving. Yield: 2 cups (8 servings, 1/4 cup each).

Nutrition Information (per 1/4 cup): 84 calories; 6.1 g. fat; 16 mg. cholesterol; 172 mg. sodium; 2.4 g. carbohydrate; 0.3 g. fiber; 4.4 g. protein

Result: DELICIOUS! I ate this cold with crackers and veggies, Mr. P heated it up and ate it on chips. It is versatile and scrumptious! It’s perfect to take in lunches to doll-up raw veggies, or as an appetizer at a dinner party. And the portion size is generous for the nutrition stats! Enjoy! ūüėÄ

Off for a crazy day! Why do I have a feeling dinner is going to be a Larabar and clementines? Going prepared!

Question: Is it snowing where you are? Do you like mayonnaise?

Drive safe! Stay warm!



Filed under condiments, fruits and vegetables, Gina's WW Recipes, hors d'oeuvres, low-carb, physical activity, recipe, reduced-calorie, teaching, travel, Uncategorized, vegetarian, work

Chili Contest: Entry 9 + Crab Queso Dip

While the Illini loss was nothing short of TORTUROUS :(…it didn’t phase Lily. This dog is a SUN GODDESS! She will nap in the sun for hours and even when she’s indoors, she plops down where the sun is shining in. She barely moved from 10am to 7pm. LAY-Z!!

But yes, tough losses all around for the Big 10…thank goodness the food was good, at least!

Best Buffalo Chicken Chili from My Bizzy Kitchen

1 Tbsp olive oil
2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 large carrots
3 stalks celery
1 large red pepper
5 cloves of garlic
5 Tbsp of chili powder
2 Tbsp ground cumin
1 Tbsp paprika
1/2 cup Frank’s Hot Moore’s Wing Sauce
2 (15 oz) cans tomato sauce
1 (15 oz) diced tomatoes
1 (15 oz) black beans, drained
1 (15 oz) chili beans in sauce (do not drain)
salt and pepper to taste


Put chicken breasts in food processor to grind up  if you can find ground chicken breast, you can use that too. Heat oil and add chicken and cook about 10 minutes on medium heat until no longer pink.  Rinse out processor and add carrots, celery, garlic and red pepper and puree. Add to chicken mixture and cook about 5 minutes until veggies start to soften.

Next add the rest of the ingredients, put stove on simmer and cook for 1 hour.

Nutrition Information: 248 calories; 3.8 g. fat; 44 mg. cholesterol; 1362 mg. sodium; 25.3 g. carbohydrate; 10.8 g. fiber; 28.3 g. protein

Result: I made this recipe of Biz’s back in February, except I followed the directions this time…since I am now the proud owner of a food processor. And I liked the chili better this time! For whatever reason, it wasn’t as spicy (which was fine with me…still had plenty of spice!) and I LOVED the texture — dicing/grinding the meat and vegetables completely changed the chili (as gross as grinding your own meat is — it’s good!). The chili is low in calories and high in fiber like a lot of the chili recipe entries, and similarly, high in sodium. Just no getting around that with the canned goods!!! Mr. Prevention (got his buffalo chicken fix!) and I both loved it, thanks Biz! ūüėÄ


Crab Queso Dip adapted from Homemade by Holman, inspired by Paula Deen

1 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 large or 1 whole small onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
4-6 jalapeno peppers, minced (I used 4 large)
2 cloves garlic, minced
2-8 oz packages 1/3 less fat Neufchatel, cut into 1 oz pieces
1 cup low-fat sour cream
1 cup 2% skim milk
2 cups 2% sharp cheddar cheese, grated/shredded
12 oz lump crab meat
2 tsp ancho chili powder
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/2 tsp salt


In a dutch oven or large sauce pan, heat olive oil over medium high heat and add onion, bell pepper, jalapenos and garlic.  Cook 3-4 minutes until slightly softened.  Reduce heat to medium and add cream cheese.  Stir to distribute and melt.  When melted, add sour cream and milk and stir to incorporate.  Mixture should be relatively smooth aside from the vegetables.  Add shredded cheese and stir to melt.  Add crab meat and spices.  Stir until well mixed and simmer an additional 5-10 minutes, until bubbly and hot.

Transfer to a serving bowl¬†and serve with chips¬†or transfer to a crockpot¬†and set on “warm” setting to keep hot. Serves 15 as heavy appetizers.

Nutrition Information (per serving): 176 calories; 12.1 g. fat; 42 mg. cholesterol; 331 mg. sodium; 6.4 g. carbohydrate; 0.8 g. fiber; 12.3 g. protein

Result: As I was stirring this HUGE sauce pan full of cheesy queso I thought to myself, “Wow, Nicole…you’re such a stand-up dietitian!” That thought quickly passed as I tried the queso and my heart skipped a beat. It was really good. Mr. Prevention and I settled in for the Illini game and proceeded to make a substantial, and yet very small, dent in a bowl of this queso dip…the recipe makes a ton! I felt a bit guilty for my indulgence and then (never before!) I decided to calculate the nutrition stats. Like I said, this makes a TON and when the WHOLE recipe clocked in at just over 2,640 calories I was FLOORED! I checked my math, re-checked my math…yep. My best guess is that this appetizer would serve 15 for heavy, heavy appetizers and could easily serve 20 at a party with a large spread. Mmmm! Enjoy!


My workout for the day was interesting: a 4-mile power walk. My 5’3 frame was HUSTLIN’ at 4.0-4.7 mph. I think it was harder than running!!

Question: What’s one food you’d THINK would be really unhealthy but isn’t all that bad?

Queso loooove,


Filed under dietitians, dog, fiber, garlic, guilt-free, healthy cooking, hors d'oeuvres, low-carb, pets, recipe, reduced-calorie, self-control, snack, sodium, Uncategorized

Bloomin’ Onion

As I was driving home from work yesterday I got a craving. Smack. Straight out of left field. I wanted a bloomin’ onion. You know, the classic Outback Steakhouse appetizer extraordinaire. All 1,560 calories, 84 grams of fat, and 5,510 milligrams of sodium extraordinaire. Or…not.

One brief trip to the grocery store later, I was able to create a bloomin’ onion that surely wouldn’t result in immanent cardiac arrest.

Prevention Bloomin’ Onion

1 large yellow onion
2 Tbsp cornstarch
pinch of paprika
pinch of cayenne
pinch of seasoning salt
pinch of pepper
2 egg whites, lightly beaten
1/4 cup whole wheat bread crumbs
canola oil cooking spray

1/2 cup low-fat sour cream
2 Tbsp ketchup
1/4 tsp seasoning salt
pinch of cayenne pepper
2 tsp horseradish sauce
pinch of paprika


Pre-heat oven to 375 F.

Cut onion ends without separating onion layers, making sure one end flat enough to keep the onion standing on its side. Cut onion into a floret-style, carefully separating the onion layers.

Combine the cornstarch, paprika, seasoning salt, cayenne, and pepper. Spray the onion lightly with cooking spray and sprinkle with cornstarch mixture. Drizzle egg whites over onion. Sprinkle with bread crumbs. Bake for 45 minutes.

Combine the remaining ingredients: sour cream, ketchup, seasoning salt, cayenne, horseradish, and paprika.

Serve onion warm with the horseradish dipping sauce.

Yield: 6 servings

Nutrition Information (per serving): 85 calories; 2.5 g. fat; 298 mg. sodium; 11.5 g. carbohydrate; 0.8 g. fiber; 3.7 g. protein

Result: Yum!! My only advice: DON’T eat half of it…at least not without Tums. Or if you’re eating with someone you’d like to kiss sometime in the near distant future… ūüėČ Oops.


Your comments from yesterday – wow! You guys are fat-savvy! I was really impressed with the opinions you all have regarding fat in the diet and the importance fat plays in satiety and balance.

I have already received lots of questions for next week’s Q&A (woot!)! Please pass along any questions you have for me!! Send’em to:

Question: Have you had a Bloomin’ Onion? Did you like it? What other menu items have nutrition stats that cause you to cringe?



Filed under dining out, fried food, guilt-free, healthy cooking, heart health, hors d'oeuvres, recipe, reduced-calorie, restaurant, saturated fat, sodium, Uncategorized

Road Trippin’ back to Reality…

I’m adding one last New Years Resolution! After reading Jessica’s post yesterdayI am committing to not reading blogs that don’t interest me (duh!). I stretch myself to find time to post many times, and it’s senseless to read blogs I’m not fed by. Fortunately and unfortunately, I love to read…but lists and pictures of what bloggies eat every day is about the last thing I want to read about — I do that day-in and day-out at work, I need not continue when I get home ūüôā Side note: there are a LOT of people who ARE “fed” (no pun intended!) by daily menus…I am just not one of them.

Anyways…how did you spend the first day of 2010? Any “lucky” traditions? Grapes? Ham and beans?

I decided to make a black-eyed peas dish as we are officially southerners. I’ve never made black-eyed peas, so I made a dish off that received 5 stars! I did alter the items below that are italicized to make the recipe more healthful!

Black-Eyed Peas Salad

Black-Eyed Peas Salad

2 (15.5 ounce) cans black-eyed peas, rinsed and drained
2 medium tomatoes, chopped
1 cup chopped green pepper
1/2 cup chopped red onion
4 green onions, sliced
1 garlic clove, minced
1 cup light Italian salad dressing
1/4 cup light sour cream
1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
Tortilla chips, optional


In a bowl, combine the first six ingredients. Combine the salad dressing, sour cream and parsley. Add to the pea mixture; toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours. Serve with tortilla chips.

It was good, but next time I’ll make it with about 1/2 as much salad dressing.

The wonderful Holly behind The Balance Broad blog passed on the Beautiful Blogger Award to me — thank you, Holly!! ūüôā

I would like to nominate 7 bloggers who are NEW to my blogroll, whose blogs I adore…

Grace of Food-Fitness-FreshAir
Jessica of Dairy Free Betty
Tasha of The Clean Eating Mama
Karla of Foodologie
Lily of Lily’s Health Pad
Sarah of Healthy Mom on the Run
Stephanie of The Skinny Plate

And 7 “fun” facts about moi…hmmm….(trying not to repeat!)…

  1. I secretly want to go back to med school, even though I love my job and career path
  2. I have NO known food allergies
  3. I love wine and beer and probably “treat” myself to a drink most nights of the week ūüôā
  4. I hate New Years Eve and I treat birthdays like any other day
  5. I play ice-hockey but I’ve never been to a NHL game — and I grew up 7 miles from the Chicago Blackhawks rink!
  6. I’ve been in love 3 times. Third time’s a charm, right? ūüėČ
  7. I don’t enjoy exercise that doesn’t make me sweat…a lot! Guess that’s why I run!

And as for yesterday’s trivia — hors d’oeuvre vs. appetizers…

Appetizers are larger in size and served before a meal as a first course. Hors d’oeuvre are served “outside of a meal” and are one-bite items that are served in a stationary location or passed by a server.

Gina got the answer right, but no one else knew! You learn something new every day, right?!

Didn’t get around to kale chips or watching Food, Inc. today…soon, very soon!

Husband, Lily, and I are driving back to Tulsa today so I will be back in action tomorrow! I can’t believe our time in Illinois is over ūüė¶ Vacations always go too fast! And I’ll miss sleeping past 8am! Have a wonderful, healthful Saturday!


Filed under alcohol, beer, blog award, condiments, exercise, holiday, hors d'oeuvres, news, physical activity, recipe, running, sleep, travel, Uncategorized, wine

Heavy Apps Delight!

Happy New Year, Blogland! Wishing you all a healthy and happy 2010!

Congratulations to Gina of Simply Life and winner of the Prevention Cookbook Giveaway! She will also receive a copy of Georgie’s cookbook! Congrats, Gina!

I hope you all had a wonderful and safe NYE! Mine started off well — we booked a trip to Vegas April 2-4th! Yay!

I was a busy bee last night and must share with you all our delicious appetizers! Heavy appetizers as a meal is one of my favorite ways to eat!




Roma tomatoes, sliced
fresh mozzarella, sliced
fresh basil leaves
olive oil
balsamic vinegar
French baguette, sliced

Toast baguette slices until edges start to brown — about 10-15 minutes at 350 F. Place tomato and cheese on to slices. Sprinkle with salt, lightly. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar and then olive oil. Top with fresh basil leave.

Mini Corn Bread Crab Cakes with Lemon-Caper Sauce

Mini Corn Bread Crab Cakes with Lemon-Caper Sauce (Source: Cooking Light)

Bake the corn bread up to three days in advance, and keep in a zip-top plastic bag. Combine the sauce ingredients and assemble the crab cakes the night before; refrigerate separately. Any leftover crab cakes are terrific with a green salad.

Yield: 16 servings (serving size: 1 crab cake and about 1 teaspoon mayonnaise mixture)

1/3  cup  reduced-fat mayonnaise
1 1/2  tablespoons  chopped fresh chives
1  tablespoon  capers, drained and chopped
1/4  teaspoon  grated lemon rind
2  teaspoons  fresh lemon juice
1/4  teaspoon  hot pepper sauce (such as Tabasco)
1/8  teaspoon  minced garlic
Dash of freshly ground black pepper

Crab cakes:
2  teaspoons  olive oil
1/2  cup  sliced green onions
1/3  cup  finely diced red bell pepper
1/3  cup  finely diced green bell pepper
1  garlic clove, minced
1/4  cup  reduced-fat mayonnaise
2  tablespoons  chopped fresh chives
2  tablespoons  chopped fresh parsley
1/2  teaspoon  grated lemon rind
1  tablespoon  fresh lemon juice
1  tablespoon  hot pepper sauce
1  teaspoon  (30%-less-sodium) Old Bay seasoning
1  large egg, lightly beaten
2  cups  crumbled Buttermilk Corn Bread
1  pound  lump crabmeat, shell pieces removed
Cooking spray
Fresh chives (optional)

To prepare sauce, combine first 8 ingredients; chill.

Preheat oven to 400¬į.

To prepare crab cakes, heat oil in a small nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions, bell peppers, and garlic to pan; saut√© 3 minutes. Remove from heat; cool. Combine bell pepper mixture, 1/4 cup mayonnaise, and next 6 ingredients (through Old Bay); stir in egg. Fold in Buttermilk Corn Bread and crabmeat. Scoop mixture into 16 portions (about 1/4 cup each) onto 2 baking sheets coated with cooking spray. Lightly cover, and refrigerate 1 hour. Uncover and bake at 400¬į for 12 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from baking sheet with a metal spatula. Serve with sauce. Garnish with chives, if desired.

Nutritional Information
Calories:83 (35% from fat); Fat:3.2g (sat 0.6g,mono 0.8g,poly 0.3g) ; Protein:7.4g; Carbohydrate:6.4g; Fiber:0.5g; Cholesterol:38mg; Iron:0.6mg; Sodium:317mg; Calcium:54mg

Crostini with Gorgonzola, Caramelized Onions, and Fig Jam

Crostini with Gorgonzola, Caramelized Onions, and Fig Jam (Source: Cooking Light)

Yield: 12 servings (serving size: 2 crostini)

1  cup  dried Black Mission figs (about 6 ounces)
1  teaspoon  lemon juice
2  cups  water
2  tablespoons  maple syrup
Dash of salt

Cooking spray
2  cups  vertically sliced yellow onion
1  teaspoon  balsamic vinegar
1/2  teaspoon  chopped fresh thyme
1/4  teaspoon  salt
1/2  cup  water (optional)

Remaining ingredients:
1/2  cup  (4 ounces) Gorgonzola cheese, softened
24  (1-inch-thick) slices diagonally cut French bread baguette, toasted (about 12 ounces)
1  teaspoon  fresh thyme leaves

To prepare jam, remove stems from figs. Place figs and juice in a food processor; process until figs are coarsely chopped. Place fig mixture, 2 cups water, syrup, and dash of salt in a medium saucepan; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 25 minutes or until thick. Cool completely.

To prepare onions, heat a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium heat. Add onion, vinegar, 1/2 teaspoon thyme, and 1/4 teaspoon salt; cover and cook 5 minutes. Uncover and cook 20 minutes or until onion is deep golden brown, stirring occasionally. While onion cooks, add 1/2 cup water, 1/4 cup at a time, to keep onion from sticking to pan.

Spread 1 teaspoon cheese over each baguette slice. Top each slice with about 1 teaspoon onion mixture and 1 teaspoon jam. Sprinkle evenly with thyme leaves.

Nutritional Information
Calories:106 (29% from fat); Fat:3.4g (sat 1.9g,mono 0.9g,poly 0.3g); Protein:2.9g; Carbohydrate:16.3g; Fiber:2.4g; Cholesterol:8mg; Iron:0.6mg; Sodium:82mg; Calcium:85mg

Parmesan Zucchini Sticks with Smoky Roasted Romesco Sauce

Parmesan Zucchini Sticks with Smoky Roasted Romesco Sauce

Parmesan Zucchini Sticks with Smoky Roasted Romesco Sauce (Source: Cooking Light)

Yield: 8 servings (serving size: 6 zucchini sticks and 1/4 cup sauce)

3  medium red bell peppers
2  plum tomatoes, halved lengthwise
1/2  cup  (1/2-inch) cubed French bread baguette, crusts removed
1 1/2  tablespoons  smoked almonds
1  tablespoon  extravirgin olive oil
1  tablespoon  sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar
1/4  teaspoon  Spanish smoked paprika
1/4  teaspoon  kosher salt
1/8  teaspoon  ground red pepper
1  large garlic clove

3  large zucchini (about 1 1/2 pounds)
1  cup  dry breadcrumbs
1/2  cup  panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
1/4  cup  (1 ounce) grated fresh Parmesan cheese
1/2  teaspoon  salt
1/2  teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper
1/2  cup  egg substitute
Cooking spray

1. Preheat broiler.

2. To prepare sauce, cut bell peppers in half lengthwise; discard seeds and membranes. Place bell pepper halves and tomatoes, skin sides up, on a foil-lined baking sheet; flatten bell peppers with hand. Broil 10 minutes or until blackened. Place in a zip-top plastic bag; seal. Let stand 15 minutes. Peel and coarsely chop, reserving any liquid.

3. Combine bell peppers, reserved liquid, tomatoes, and next 8 ingredients (through garlic) in a blender or food processor; process until smooth.

4. Preheat oven to 400¬į.

5. To prepare zucchini, cut 1 zucchini in half crosswise; cut each half lengthwise into 8 wedges. Repeat procedure with remaining zucchini. Combine breadcrumbs, panko, cheese, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and black pepper in a shallow dish. Dip zucchini in egg substitute; dredge in breadcrumb mixture. Place zucchini on a wire rack coated with cooking spray. Lightly coat zucchini with cooking spray. Bake at 400¬į for 25 minutes or until golden brown. Serve immediately with sauce.

Nutritional Information
Calories:170 (30% from fat); Fat:5.6g (sat 1.3g,mono 2.5g,poly 1.3g); Protein:8.4g; Carbohydrate:23.4g; Fiber:3.9g; Cholesterol:3mg; Iron:1.9mg; Sodium:434mg; Calcium:107mg

Order of appetizer preference from the hubby:

1. Caprese (“…because I was craving it”)
2. crostini with gorgonzola and fig (“it had a really unique taste”)
3. zucchini sticks (“really good and healthy, but the sauce needed more kick”)
4. crab cakes (“good, but lemony”)

Order of appetizer preference from the chef:

1. crostini with gorgonzola and fig (“pain to make, but so unique and flavorful!”)
2. Caprese (“Can you go wrong when you combine those ingredients? No way, Jose! Yum!”)
3. crab cakes (“Crumbly, but delicious! Very lemony. May go easier on the capers next time.”)
4. zuccini sticks (“Really good, but next time I will buy red peppers instead of allowing my cheap husband to talk me into using orange because we already had them. Sauce needed some kick, but the sticks were delish!”)

Question 1: Do you know the difference between “appetizers” and “hors d’oeuvres”? ūüėČ There is a difference!

Hint: some of my “apps” are probably more fitting in a “hors d’oeuvres” category!

Question 2: Have you been to Las Vegas? Where is your favorite place to stay? Anything we MUST do?

Off for a hot date with the treadmill to get this year started right! Also on the schedule today: black eyed peas and kale chips! Maybe even watching Food, Inc. with the in-laws! I’m excited!

Happy New Year!


Filed under Cooking Light, dinner, exercise, Giveaway, healthy cooking, hors d'oeuvres, movie, recipe, running, travel, Uncategorized

2010 has big shoes to fill!

I am amazed by the responses from my last post. You are all so abundantly sweet and in-tune with the importance of health over numbers. I appreciate the support of me being not only a dietitian, but an imperfect person who struggles with weight, as well. Of all posts and responses, my last is most memorable. THANK YOU!

I have to say that 2009 was such a joyous, blessed year for me, and that while I have high hopes for 2010, the new year has some mongo shoes to fill. Recap of 2009…

  • graduated grad school!
  • wrote and published a thesis!
  • passed the RD exam!
  • got my first job as an RD, which I love!
  • got married and had¬†a fairytale wedding!
  • honeymooned¬†in beautiful Puerto Vallarta!
  • bought our first home!
  • moved from Chicago to Tulsa safely and without haphazard!
  • my husband and I are together on the same continent¬†— no more Italy-to-Chicago love!
  • earned 280 hours towards my CDE credential!
  • we had our first baby — Lily the bulldog!
  • became the owner of a treadmill!
  • I started a blog which has quickly gained readers!

Whew! I think I got it all. It’s been a busy, wonderful¬†year! What I have NOT done this year is continued to put a heavy emphasis on myself, which is my “resolution” for 2010. In 2010 I want to…

  • fit in exercise AT LEAST 4 days a week, every week
  • continue trying new, healthy recipes (one recipe a week!)
  • run a half marathon
  • obtain a weight that I feel energized at
  • continue blogging about nutrition
  • earn 500 hours towards¬†the CDE credential

I was feeling adamantly against putting my 2010 resolutions for the world to see, but what could BE better accountability!? New years resolutions are not made only to be broken this year!

This evening, our NYE plans consist of PJ’s and making some fun appetizers! I haven’t been cooking at all as we’ve been traveling for nearly the past 2 weeks!¬†Needless to say,¬†I’m looking forward to trying some new appetizer recipes and enjoying a bottle of champagne with hubby!

For those procrastinators, or those new to Prevention RD, your recipe submissions to the Prevention Cookbook MUST be received by midnight tonight! Those who participate with receive an electronic copy of the cookbook, as well as a chance to win a cookbook (authored by a dietitian and blogger!) and a mega prize giveaway! All recipe entries should be sent to Go here for more details!

I leave you with a Lily video. This is she and her “dog uncle”, Jake.

And Sarah is having a cookbook giveaway on her blog! Check it out!

Question: What was your biggest accomplishment in 2009? Do you have any big blog plans for 2010?

Happy 2010, everyone! Be safe!


Filed under blog, diabetes, diet, dietitians, dog, exercise, fit over fat, Giveaway, healthy cooking, holiday, hors d'oeuvres, pets, recipe, travel, weight loss, work

A breakfast of champions: turkey meatballs!

Kidding. But I have to fess-up to eating a meatball at 7am this morning!!! Actually 6:56am…

Ew, right? Nooo! I swear, meatballs are typically THE easiest thing for me to zoom by at a cocktail party or array of hors d’oeuvres (I am 99% sure that’s the first time I spelled that French word correctly on my first try…even after 9 years of French classes!). These meatballs, however, are phenom! And…healthy! Spicy, too! Mmmm!


Sweet ‘n Sassy Meatballs

2 eggs, lightly beaten

2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce

2 Tbsp + 1 cup chipotle sauce, divided

1 cup whole wheat bread crumbs

2 Tbsp dried, minced onion

1 tsp dried oregano

3/4 tsp garlic powder

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp pepper

1 lb lean ground turkey breast

1 lb Italian turkey sausage links, casings removed

1/2 cup reduced-sugar, all-natural apricot preserves


In a large bowl, combine eggs, Worcestershire sauce, and 2 tablespoons chili sauce. Stir in bread crumbs, onion, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Crumble turkey sausage and ground turkey breast over mixture and mix well (hands may be required!). Shape into 1-inch balls.

Place on a rack coated with cooking spray in a shallow baking pan. Bake at 375 F for 15-20 minutes or until meat is no longer pink.

In a large bowl, combine apricot preserves and remaining chili sauce. Add meatballs and toss gently to coat. Place in a 15-inch x 10-inch x 1 inch baking pan coated with cooking spray. Bake 5-10 minutes longer or until glazed, stirring every 3 minutes*.

*I omitted this last step as I transferred my meatballs to a crock pot for buffet serving.

Yield: 4 dozen

Serving size: 1 meatball

Nutrition Information (per serving): 42 calories, 2 grams of fat, 0 grams of saturated fat, 20 mg cholesterol, 179 mg sodium, 3 grams carbohydrate, 0 grams fiber, 3 grams protein

And another great appetizer recipe which is also very colorful and fun…

Cold Chicken-Cheese Kabobs

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp chili powder

1/8 tsp pepper

1/2 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cubed

1/2 cup balsamic vinegar

2 tsp olive oil

5 ounces part-skim mozzarella cheese, cubed

16 cherry tomatoes

Combine salt, pepper, and chili powder; rub into chicken cubes. Transfer to a large bowl and add vinegar. Cover and refridgerate 3-4 hours or overnight.

In a large skillet, cook chicken in oil until no longer pink. Cool slightly. Alternately tread chicken, cheese, and tomatoes onto wooden toothpicks. Serve cold.

Yield: 16 servings

Serving size: 1 skewer

Nutrition information (per serving): 48 calories, 2 grams of fat, 1 gram saturated fat, 13 mg cholesterol, 132 mg sodium, 2 grams carbohydrate, 0 grams fiber, 6 grams protein

With the holidays coming up, these are 2 hors d’oeuvres worth some serious consideration in adding to or changing in your line-up!

Well, I’ve played hookie all morning from work cooking away for this afternoon’s holiday party for our patients. Considering the circumstances, I am opting out of wearing scrubs to work for the second time this week…gasp! I know, right. So, off I go to put effort into myself. Have a wonderful weekend…

…anyone have any exciting weekend plans? Do tell! I’ve got nuttin’!

And if you had to choose TWO favorite TV shows currently in-season, what would they be? (I can’t choose just one, so that’s why I’m asking for 2!)

Modern Family (highly rec!) and 90210 for me!

Yes, I realize this makes me completely lame!

And for all you Biggest Loser fans…this is a must-see!

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Filed under healthy cooking, holiday, hors d'oeuvres, recipe, The Biggest Loser, work