In need of Healthy Recipes

Tonya - posted on 02/05/2011 ( 8 moms have responded )

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I am a mother of three very active girls, and a wife to a husband who is always on the go with work, and it seems like meals get lost in the mix. This year I am trying to 1. loose weight, and 2. make better choices when it come to meals. However, I am very lost when it come to cooking healthey. I was wondering if any of you have any good quick meals that my family of 5 would love? Or any ideas on where to find some.

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Katie - posted on 03/07/2011

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Good for you. Two great magazines for healthy, family-friendly food are Eating Well and Cooking Light. Martha Stewart's Everyday Food magazines are useful as well. I am a registered dietitian and write a blog about food and family and may have some useful recipes and tips for you. It's Mom's Kitchen Handbook: Raising Fresh-Food Kids in a French-Fried World www.momskitchenhandbook.com. Best of luck to you.

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Depending on the person/family this could be a hit or a bust. However, we would always take our meals with us when we went to martial arts 4 nights a week. I refused to put fast food in my kids more than twice a month. We got different veggie "meats" from the frozen section and tried all of them. We liked some, hated some, and loved others. We would take fresh fruit with us in a small cooler and everyone has a "to go" cup that we use on nature hikes. (those were always filled with water) So basically I would cook the vegetarian meal right before we left and we would take it with us. My girls ate in the car. I would suggest something like this. You could always do salads if you want. Add some chicken to lettuce and dressing on the side. Add the two when you get to where you are going and eat there. Or make sandwiches and add fresh fruits and veggies.

Paula - posted on 02/15/2011

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I really like a blog called weelicious.com. She is a mom of 2 and gets her kids in the kitchen. I also like a web site called cooking with kids.

We don't have many treats in our house and I get the kids (3) involved with what we eat. For me it's about healthy choices.....not if you will eat your veggies but how much. We have quite a variety too. It's also about whole grains, cooking the food yourself and not using prepackaged foods, fruits and veggies. I do fruit shakes and my 2 and 4 year old really like them. Fresh fruit (any combo) a little milk and good yogurt mixed in the blender.... Yummy and healthy snack or breakfast on the run.

My main way to stay healthy is simply meal planning. It's those weeks when I haven't thought about meals that unhealthy foods get into our diet. Also for me, a big thing is proportions. Americans are used to large meals.....try smaller ones with veggies and hummus in-between for snacks. Good luck!

Michele - posted on 02/15/2011

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A slow cooker may help you. I do strive to cook healthy as many nights a week as I am able to. Both my husband and I work and we have 3 kids.
I have dropped 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts in the slow cooker with a chopped onion and about a cup of italian dressing. Serve with brown rice or quinoa and a steamed veggie like broccoli or peas.
Another really easy one for chicken breasts is a 16 oz. container of fresh salsa or pico de gallo about 1/2 can of beer. Once cooked, shred the chicken and put over rice, with a salad or even in tortillas for burritos.
I also make chili in the slow cooker. Add cans of the following beans (I rinse them to reduce sodium): black, kidney, pinto and canelli (white beans). Add a can of diced tomatoes, 2 cans of tomato sauce (low sodium), a 1/4 c of red wine, sauted chopped onion and chopped fresh garlic, about 2 tbsp of chili powder, a pinch of dried oregano and if you desire 1/2 of chopped celery.
Let cook all day. Delicious and healthy! This also makes leftovers. Sometimes we have turkey chili dogs later in the week using Trader Joe's nitrate free dogs- not a recommended choice for losing weight, but you can always spoon over a baked sweet potato- delicious!!

Jaymi - posted on 02/07/2011

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Choose lean meats, like boneless skinless chicken breasts or other protein sources like lentils and beans for your meals.
Boneless skinless chicken is incredibly versatile and very easy to season. I just throw some herbs, garlic and salt and pepper at mine and then bake it. Just be sure not to overcook it.
Beans you can use out of a can, just beware of added salt, rinse them off before you use them too.
Grains you can do quinoa and brown rice, mix them with some organic frozen veggies and you have an easy yummy side.
Veggies are best (imo) roasted on a grill. Grilled veggies are absolutely amazing! Broccoli and asparagus are good steamed, as are green beans, snow peas, cauliflower and carrots. Zucchini and summer squash are super yummy if you cut them into spears, drizzle with olive oil sprinkle with herbs and then broil in the oven until the tips look cripsy and the centers are soft-ish.

The key is really in how you season and how you cook. Both take a bit of experimenting and experience before you get it just right. Keep the focus on a journy towards health.

My fall back recipe is brown rice cook however many servings you need, a jar of salsa or about 2.5 cups of homemade, a chicken breast tenderloin (not a whole breast) per person served, a can of beans, a can of corn, and one avocado per 3 people.

Make your rice, cook your chicken, rinse the beans and corn with fresh water then place in a large pan with the salsa to heat. Chop the avocado into large chunks. When the rice and chicken are done and the salsa mixture is nice and hot just mix together the ingredients to taste and you're done. :) Delicious and healthy and the leftovers make for really good burritos.

The key to making healthy meals easy is to prepare for the week on the weekend. My husband and I will boil and entire carton of eggs for the week ahead. I'll wash and chop our veggies, mix our salads and bag all of our dry snacks (nuts, seeds, dried fruits, whole grain crackers etc) and slice up his lunch snack cheeses ahead of time. The same idea can be applied to dinners as well. Measure your rice out and put it into baggies, wash and chop your veggies a few days out etc.

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