This recipe started as a happy accident. Last week I was low on groceries and looking through my fridge hoping to find a few things to throw together for dinner. What I came up with was feta cheese, hummus and basil mixed together and melted over pasta. It was surprisingly good and I couldn’t help but think I was onto something. I’ve since improved it into a real recipe by adding the feta and hummus to a roux to make a rich, creamy sauce and filling out the dish with herbs, chicken, sun dried tomatoes, artichokes and calamata olives. Now the pasta tastes fresh, creamy, tangy, and full of Greek flavors. You may even want to squeeze a lemon wedge over the top for added brightness. I didn’t have one on hand but I think I might add a little spritz next time.
This dish presents beautifully, which makes it perfect for serving company, a family dinner, or a comforting meal at home. No one will ever guess that a filling portion of this chicken and pasta in a decadent, creamy cheese sauce clocks in at less than 350 calories! Don’t you wish all indulgences were this guilt-free?
Santa Claus gets milk and cookies set out for him on Christmas Eve, but what should a host or hostess looking to thank the Easter Bunny offer? I’m no Emily Post, but my guess would be these Carrot Cake Cupcakes.
Carrots have tons of health benefits including improved vision, healthy skin, and prevention of heart disease and cancer. I love eating them on their own (or with a little hummus), but I love them even more in cupcake form. Isn’t everything a little better in cupcake form? Especially when those cupcakes are slathered in sweet cream cheese frosting, and only 159 calories or 4 Weight Watchers Points+ each. The cake in this recipe is perfect. It’s not too sweet (so it’s just the right match for the decadent frosting), it’s packed full of carrots, and the plump, juicy raisins offer little bursts of added flavor throughout.
I’m pretty sure I see some cupcake envy in Santa’s future…
I was thinking recently about the fact that I’ve done a ton of recipes using wonton or egg roll wrappers, but not a single one of them has actually been an Asian recipe. How weird is that? I put an end that streak with these Chicken Egg Rolls and I’m really happy I did. They’re only 113 calories/3 Weight Watchers Points+ each and they’re surprisingly filling (probably because they’re packed with protein from the chicken). These make a great appetizer or snack but you could also easily have a few as a main course for lunch or dinner.
I absolutely love Hoisin sauce (kind of like a Chinese barbecue sauce), and it gives the egg roll filling a slightly sweet, tangy flavor. The veggies add freshness and crunch and each roll is bursting with a hearty amount of chicken. Baking the egg rolls gives the wrappers a nice crispness without leaving them oily like their fried counterparts. Serve them up with the dipping sauce of your choice and these are sure to be a crowd pleaser!
I’m not even going to talk about how gosh darn adorable these mini cannoli cups are. The pictures speak for themselves. They’re downright precious.
What you can’t taste from looking at the photos is that these little cups are overflowing with sweet, creamy marscapone and ricotta cannoli filling that is jam packed with chocolate chips. It also doesn’t hurt that this sweet, cheesy goodness is nestled in flaky phyllo cups and that the whole recipe takes about 10 minutes to make. Ten minutes? Don’t mind if I do.
You can even make and refrigerate the filling ahead of time and then just spoon it into the cups before serving. It doesn’t get much easier! Even if you buy pre-made fried cannoli shells, stuffing the filling inside can be a pain. This recipe solves that problem and weighs in at only 63 calories (or 2 Weight Watchers Points Plus) per cup. If you’re looking for a quick, sweet Italian finish to any meal, this is the dessert for you!
When Ocean Spray approached me about making a smoothie recipe using their diet juice drinks, I was immediately on board. I already buy Ocean Spray Diet Cranberry Juice almost every time I go to the grocery store – it’s my favorite! They have a bunch of different varieties (Cran-Grape, Cran-Pomegranate, Cran-Cherry) and some Blueberry-based flavors as well, but my favorites are the straight cranberry version or the Cranberry with Lime (yum). It’s funny because my favorite thing to drink at home is half diet cranberry juice (sometimes with lime!) + half club soda over ice, but it turns out they also have a Sparkling Diet Cranberry drink. I guess I’ll try that next since it’s probably pretty close to what I’ve been making on my own – great minds think alike! The Diet Ocean Spray juice drinks only have 5 calories per serving, so it’s a great way to still get a fun, fruity drink without a ton of sugar and calories.
I’ve been meaning to post a “green monster” smoothie on my blog for quite a while. When Ocean Spray sent me a base recipe for their own Mixed Berry Smoothie I figured this was the perfect opportunity! You might be looking at the photos and thinking “where’s the green?” If you’re unfamiliar with the term, green monster smoothies contain a secret ingredient that contributes a bevy of healthy benefits and usually gives the smoothie a green color (the berry colors overpower the green in this one) without affecting its fruity flavor. What’s the secret ingredient? Spinach! Stay with me. Spinach is packed with vitamins, fiber and antioxidants and is also known to improve your vision, skin, bones, immunity, blood pressure and brain function. Need more convincing? If you haven’t done this before, spinach in a smoothie might seem crazy, but I promise all you’re going to taste is delicious fruit flavors from the juice, banana and frozen berries. Trust me!
This smoothie is thick and smooth and packed full of fresh, fruity flavor. You can even make it your own by trying it with different Ocean Spray Diet Juice flavors for different flavor combinations. Which one is your favorite?