Roasted Chicken Shawarma Recipe – 5 Points +

Roasted Chicken Shawarma Recipe

One of the many things I love about Southern CA is the access to a fantastic selection of international cuisine. And after getting hooked on chicken shawarma from my trips to Israel, it’s pretty easy to get my craving for it satisfied here. However, the restaurant version is not very Weight Watchers friendly. So I decided to make my oven roasted version that still has all the ridiculously delicious flavors of a traditional chicken shawarma recipe, but with a lot less Weight Watchers Points Plus. Making this dish was incredibly easy, and each 2 piece serving of chicken came out to just 5 Points +. I served this chicken straight out of the pan, but I also like to slice it into thin strips, and stuff it into a pita with some tahini, or feta cheese, and some of Israeli cucumber salad….sooooooo GOOD! This Roasted Chicken Shawarma Recipe is a MUST try!

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Cilantro Lime Cucumber Salad Recipe – 2 Points +

Cilantro Lime Cucumber Salad

You know those days where you spent so much time working on the main course, that you completely forgot to prepare a side dish? Well, that happens to me a LOT. More often than I’d like to admit. Sometimes I’m too busy, sometimes I too lazy, and sometimes I’m just ill-prepared. But on those days, quick and easy Weight Watchers salad recipes like this Cilantro Lime Cucumber Salad, save me. I almost always have these ingredients on hand, and I can throw this together in just a few minutes. I highly recommend using a mandolin slicer in order to get nice, evenly thin cucumber slices. But it can absolutely be done with a knife too – it’s just not as easy. The flavors are fresh and amazing, and each serving is just 2 Points +. I usually prefer to go a bit heavy on the red pepper flakes as I really like that heat, but this time I made it for my kids, so I didn’t use as much. This salad also makes a perfect, low calorie side for summer BBQ’s, so definitely add it to your “must make this summer list”. Enjoy!

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Penne with Sausage & Vegetables – 7 Points +

Penne with Sausage & VeggiesWe all have rushed evenings when you need something tasty in a hurry. This Penne with Sausage & Vegetables fits the bill perfectly. It’s full of flavor, nutrients and color. For me, it’s a quick meal because I’m able to multi-task. The first thing is to get the pasta on, then the sausage while the pasta is cooking. While the pasta and sausage are cooking, chop the vegetables. I also like to have vegetables (especially peppers) already chopped to save time during the week. The leftovers of this are perfect for another quick meal or for lunch. [Read more…]

Whole Grain Crepes with Fruit – 6 Points +

Crepes with Fruit

There is very little that I love more than a Saturday brunch with my husband. I always try to do something fun and especially delicious on Saturday mornings. Usually, the morning is a little slower and more relaxed, so I have time to make things like crepes. I’ll admit, I love crepes, they’re similar to pancakes, but the fluffy and light flavor is different. They also open up a whole world of possibilities when it comes to filling them. My favorite filling is fresh fruit, or yogurt topped with a homemade fruit sauce. You can also fill them with scrambled eggs, meat, cheese or just about anything else you can imagine. And a word to the wise — your first crepe will probably be a mess. Mine first one always is, no matter how much I make them. After the first one, they’ll turn out perfect and delicious.

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Roasted Cumin Spiced Cauliflower and Garbanzo Beans

Roasted Cumin Spiced Cauliflower and Garbanzo Beans

If you’ve been reading LaaLoosh for a while, you’ll probably know that roasting vegetables is one of my favorite ways to eat them. The roasting process adds such a fantastic flavor, and even my kids will eat their veggies this way, so that’s a huge plus. One of our family’s favorite vegetables to roast is cauliflower, so recently, I decided to experiment with a few ideas and see if I could take a standard, roasted cauliflower recipe, and kick it up a notch. Mission accomplished. This Roasted Cumin Spiced Cauliflower and Garbanzo Beans is so ridiculously simple, but is absolutely delicious and truly tastes like something that would be served as a side dish in a fancy restaurant. You can enjoy it is as is, or serve on top of salads or in soups for added flavor bonus. I like to serve it in a pretty bowl, garnished with fresh parsley, alongside my protein of choice. If you are looking for a way to get more fiber in your diet, this easy Weight Watchers side dish recipe is a must.

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Ranch Meatballs Recipe – 5 Points +

Ranch Meatballs Recipe

A good variation to meatloaf are these tasty Ranch Meatballs! Easy to make and always a crowd pleaser, you can enjoy them in a variety of ways: as is, in a sandwich, with pasta and sauce, on top of salads, in soups, in a pita pocket with salad and tahini sauce…I could go on on. I like to make 2 or 3 batches of them, and freeze them so I have something quick and delicious on hand for when I need a dinner or lunch STAT. My kids love them too, which is great for the evenings where I’m serving a dinner that they don’t like, and I need a healthy alternative for them. They are super tasty and the best part is that you get 6 meatballs for just 5 Points! They key here is using extra lean ground beef – it should be 96% lean and 4% fat – so make sure that’s the one you get if you want to keep this at just 5 Weight Watchers Points. Enjoy!

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Roasted Butternut Squash with Tahini and Za’atar – 4 Points +

Roasted Butternut Squash with Tahini and Za’atar

Liven up a standard Roasted Butternut Squash Recipe with the addition of two wonderfully bold flavors – tahini sauce and za’atar spice blend. In this Weight Watchers side dish recipe, the sweet, buttery squash is complemented by the roasted sesame flavor of the tahini sauce and the alluring spice mixture of the zaatar. If you haven’t ever tried za’atar before, once you do, I guarantee it will become one of your pantry staples! It’s a Middle Eastern spice blend that involves some combination of ground dried oregano, thyme or marjoram, ground sumac, toasted sesame seeds and often, salt. It’s often used on breads, chicken, and on top of hummus or soft cheeses. Zaatar has an amazing and unique flavor that is aromatic, and tangy at the same time. This simple, yet amazing side dish is not only delicious and full of nutrients, each serving is just 4 Points +, making it a very Weight Watchers friendly recipe too.

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Lobster and Shrimp Scampi – 10 Points +

Lobster and shrimp scampi

 

I absolutely love seafood. I started creating some scampi recipes that did not have butter in them to see what they would taste like and I was pleasantly surprised. This lobster and shrimp scampi is the perfect dish to have at the end of the week when you have some points to use. It is delicious. Some recipes use all parts of the lobster, but I prefer to use the tails, especially if I want to reduce time in the kitchen. I have found it easier to check the tenderness of the tails verses the whole lobster. I used regular organic pasta noodles. You certainly can use whole wheat or whole grain pasta as I have done that with shrimp scampi. But I do prefer the regular pasta for this recipe.
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Thai Shrimp Curry Recipe – 7 Points +

Thai Shrimp Curry

I’ve always loved the creamy, spicy and tangy taste of curry recipes. And overtime I have a chance to try a new version, I jump on it! However of my good ol’ reliable standby curry recipes that I make frequently at home is this Thai Shrimp Curry Recipe. You can find the coconut milk, fish sauce and curry paste in the Asian section at the grocery store (Thai Kitchen is the brand I used, and it’s pretty readily available at most stores). I also love to bulk this dish up with vegetables such as carrots, red bell peppers, zucchini and tomatoes…yum! The flavor and heat is in the curry paste, so add more or less to suit your taste. I also like mine tangy, so I often add extra lime juice. Feel free to play around with yours until you achieve the perfect flavor that suits your mood. At just 7 Points + per serving, this Thai Shrimp Curry Recipe is way healthier than most restaurant versions. Enjoy!

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Oven Fried Chicken Strips – 6 Points +

Oven Fried Chicken Strips

I love fried chicken, but unfortunately we all know it is not a healthy choice. Oven fried chicken strips is a perfect alternative. I cut up some thin chicken breasts (although the strips are a bit “off shape”) and decided to try buttermilk instead of eggs for dipping. I love the taste as it allows the chicken to taste moist and not dry. I did not add salt or pepper as I tried the Grill Mates Montreal Chicken Seasoning instead. It was a nice addition. I served this dish with a vegetable side dish. You can add a dipping sauce for the chicken strips, just be sure to calculate the points and add them to your meal.

Oven Fried Chicken Strips – 6 Points +

Oven fried chicken strips are an easy, tasty and healthy alternative to the traditional dish.

Ingredients

  • 4 thin, boneless, skinless chicken breasts (I used Perdue Fit & Easy Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts, Thin Sliced –already cut perfectly in a package in the fresh meats area of a grocery store)
  • 1 cup low-fat buttermilk
  • 1 1/2 cups bread crumbs
  • 4 tablespoons grated Parmesan
  • 1 tablespoon Grill Mates Montreal Chicken Seasoning
  • Non-stick cooking spray (Olive oil flavor is used for this recipe)
  • Salt and Pepper to taste (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. In a shallow bowl combine breadcrumbs, cheese, and chicken seasoning, mix well.
  3. In a second shallow bowl add buttermilk.
  4. Slice chicken breasts into 3 strips each.
  5. Dip chicken strips into buttermilk first and let excess drip off before dipping into dry mixture.
  6. Dip chicken strips into dry mixture making sure to coat all of the strips with the dry mixture.
  7. Spray a shallow baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
  8. Lay the chicken strips flat on baking dish and bake for 20-25 minutes or until pink is gone and desired crispness has been reached.

Preparation time: 15 minute(s)

Cooking time: 20-25 minute(s)

Diet tags: Low calorie, Reduced fat, High protein

Number of servings (yield): 4

Culinary tradition: USA (Southern)

Calories: 253

Fat: 5

Protein: 31

Entire recipe makes: 4 servings
Serving size is about: about 3 strips
Each serving = 6 Points +

PER SERVING: 253 calories; 5 g fat; 19 g carbohydrates; 31 g protein; 2.5g fiber

Baked Macaroni and Cheese – 5 Points +

Baked Macaroni and Cheese

This baked macaroni and cheese recipe is easy to prepare as well as low fat. I have many variations for this traditional baked macaroni and cheese dish and this is the one I most recently prepared. The cayenne pepper adds a little spice and I prefer freshly ground pepper as well. I will serve this as a light main meal with a side salad for lunch or dinner. This recipe was prepared as a side dish to chicken loaf (a.k.a. meatloaf) or pork chops.

Baked Macaroni and Cheese – 5 Points +

I have loved baked macaroni and cheese since I was a kid. It’s the perfect comfort food. This is a healthy version and very tasty.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups dry macaroni (Dreamfields Elbows is used for this recipe)
  • 3/4 cup evaporated fat-free milk
  • 1 cup low-fat cottage cheese (Horizon Organic: Low-fat Small Curd Cottage is used for this recipe)
  • 1/2 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded low-fat cheddar cheese (Reduced fat – Cabot’s Sharp Cheddar is used for this recipe)
  • 1 tbsp. grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tbsp. dry bread crumbs
  • Pinch cayenne pepper
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Prepare macaroni according to instructions on the box.
  3. In a saucepan, heat milk over low heat.
  4. Add the cheeses (except Parmesan) until melted, stirring constantly.
  5. Drain pasta and place in a 2 quart casserole dish sprayed with cooking spray.
  6. Remove the cheese sauce from the heat then pour on top of cooked pasta.
  7. Stir and mix cheese and pasta well.
  8. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, breadcrumbs, salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper.
  9. Bake the casserole for 15-20 minutes until bubbly and the top is browned.

Preparation time: 10-15 minutes

Cooking time: 20-25 minutes

Diet type: Vegetarian

Diet tags: Low calorie, Reduced fat

Number of servings (yield): 4

Culinary tradition: USA (Traditional)

Calories: 212

Fat: 3.3

Protein: 16.2

Entire recipe makes: 4 servings
Serving size is about: approximately 1 cup
Each serving = 5 Points +

PER SERVING: 212 calories; 3.3 g fat; 27.9 g carbohydrates; 16.2 g protein; 0.7g fiber

Oven Baked French Fries – 3 Points +

Oven baked french fries
Comfort food does not have to be high in calories and fat. This is an alternative to french fries. Instead of heavy oils and grease, oven baked fries are much better. As a bonus, they are healthier too.

Oven baked french fries – 3 points +

This easy side dish of oven baked french fries is a perfect healthy alternative. I serve these with malt vinegar when I make fish and chips, or grilled burgers (both beef and turkey). I have made these with veggie burgers too. My friend’s children love these and prefer them to fast food french fries.

Ingredients

  • 2 large Russet baking potatoes cut into strips and/or wedges
  • 4 teaspoons light extra light olive oil (Filippo Berio Extra Light Olive Oil is used for this recipe)
  • ½ teaspoon fresh ground pepper
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ teaspoons garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • Malt vinegar or ketchup (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425°F.
  2. Spray cookie sheet with cooking spray
  3. Peel potatoes into ½ inch strips
  4. In a small bowl add potatoes, olive oil, seasoning and toss.
  5. Place the potatoes on the cookie sheet and bake 15 minutes.
  6. Flip potatoes over and bake 10 more minutes or until desired tenderness or crispiness.
  7. After potatoes are done dab with a paper towel to absorb any excess oil.
  8. Flavor with malt vinegar or ketchup and serve hot.

Preparation time: 5 minute(s)

Cooking time:

Diet type: Vegetarian

Diet tags: Low calorie, Reduced fat

Number of servings (yield): 4

Culinary tradition: USA (General)

Calories: 102

Fat: 5

Protein: 2

Entire recipe makes: 4 servings
Serving size is about: 1/2 of a potato
Each serving = 3 Points +

PER SERVING: 102 calories; 5g fat; 13 g carbohydrates; 2g protein; 1g fiber