Mango Salsa Recipe – 0 Smart Points

Mango Salsa

Chips and salsa are a pretty popular snack in my house. The whole family is a fan, and we find ourselves snacking on it very regularly. When I’m busy, I’ll rely on store bought salsa, but when I have the time, there is nothing more amazing than freshly prepared, homemade salsa. Recently, I whipped up a mango salsa that was total perfection. It was fresh, light, sweet, and savory….and I couldn’t get enough of it. It’s the perfect summer poolside indulgence. My kids and I finished the whole bowl in one sitting! The salsa itself is 0 Smart Points, as it has no ingredients that count towards your Point allowance, but the chips are another story of course. I need to be careful with those! A salsa recipe this good can have me easily indulging in too many chips. Alternatively, this would a great topper for fish, chicken, and salads. Get this tasty Mango Salsa recipe in before summer is over!

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Vegan Balela Salad Recipe – 4 Smart Points

Baela Salad

If you’ve never had (or even heard of) Balela Salad before, let me fill you in. Balela is a Middle-Eastern garbanzo and black bean salad, tossed with a tangy, herbed vinaigrette. I typically make this delicious salad anytime I’m cooking for vegans or vegetarians. The beans offer a nice dose of protein, and are wonderfully filling. It’s such a versatile recipe too — you can serve it as a side salad, as a relish for meat or fish, or as a dip for crackers, breads, or pita chips. I’ve also used this in a sandwich or wrap. I’m telling you…a ton of things can be done with this recipe! We’ve been watching a lot of hockey lately (playoffs and now the Stanley cup championship), and this is the perfect game day snack. Even meat eaters will love it! This Vegan Balela Salad recipe is a must try. Enjoy!

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Strawberry Oatmeal Smoothie – 4 Smart Points

I’m trying to increase my protein intake, and for me, one of the easiest ways to do that is to add a protein shake to my day. I’ve got a couple of favorite store bought ones, but I wanted to try and get the same flavors and textures at home. One of the downsides of protein shakes is that if you don’t do it right, you end up with a grainy texture – which I dislike. I also tend to have to adjust the ingredients slightly, and then again, so I end up with enough smoothie for the next week. I had a bunch of strawberries to use up, and added a ripe banana as well so that I could have the extra vitamins before my walk. The oatmeal adds some fiber to help me stay full longer, as well as being heart healthy. Almond milk is always an alternative in smoothies, and works great, but I went with skim since it’s high in protein and calcium, but lower in fat. A little vanilla helps to bring all the flavors together. The result was a perfect smoothie. I used it for a snack both before and after my walk. Since I had some congestion recently, I was using some Emergen-C to get extra vitamins to try and prevent getting any more illnesses (that seem to be going around). I added my packet of Emergen-C to the second half of my smoothie and gave it a good shake. It added a little bit of fizz to the smoothie, which really seems to lighten the smoothie. The end result of that I liked it so well, I thought I’d add a little sparkling water or club soda into the second half of my smoothie, just to freshen it up. That’s easy to do, and if you make sure your sparkling water or club soda has no flavorings that add points, you don’t alter the points of your original smoothie. However, when adding the carbonation – be careful not to stir or shake too vigorously or you’ll end up with a little more cleaning than you wanted!
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Cauliflower Nachos Recipe – 5 Smart Points

Cauliflower Nachos

Notch-yo average nacho (see what I did there?), these healthy Cauliflower Nachos are an absolutely decadent treat that are completely guilt free. Nachos are one of my favorite guilty indulgences, and just by making a couple of healthy changes, I can enjoy a big heaping serving of them. In this recipe, we are simply switching out the high fat, high calorie tortilla chips, and substituting them with Mexican spiced, roasted cauliflower slices. Cauliflower has such a mild, neutral flavor, that when you smother it with seasonings, cheese, salsa, red onions, etc, it takes on the flavor those foods, and you don’t really notice it. Granted, it doesn’t have the “crunch” of tortilla chips, but let’s face it…the chips are just a vehicle for all those nacho toppings! Feel free to go crazy and add other toppings like black beans, ground chicken or beef, carne asada, diced peppers…you get the idea. I cannot even begin to tell you how happy this recipe makes me. It’s a MUST try!

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Basic Egg White Salad Recipe – 2 Smart Points

Basic Egg White Salad

When trying to eat a high protein/low fat diet, it’s no secret that egg whites can play a huge a role in your eating plan. I always keep a big bowl of prepared, hardboiled eggs stashed in my refrigerator for quick and easy access. Eating the yellow part of the egg does provide a lot of nutrients, healthy fats, and cholesterol, but when I want to keep my Smart Points low, I stick to just the whites. One of my favorite ways to enjoy them is in this Basic Egg White Salad Recipe. It has all the beloved flavors of a traditional egg salad, but with a lot less fat, sugar and calories. At just 2 Smart Points per serving, this egg white salad goes great on a sandwich, on top of a salad, or straight out of the bowl! You can’t go wrong with this reliable recipe.

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Mint Lemonade Slushy – 0 Smart Points

Mint Lemonade Slushy

With the first whiff of Spring this year, I was already beginning to crave cool summer drinks and treats. One of my favorites is this Mint Lemonade Slushy recipe. I fist had one of these drinks on a trip to Israel, where it’s referred to as “limonana”. Under the hot desert sun, I don’t think I’ve ever had a more refreshingly delicious drink! The original recipe uses sugar as a sweetener, but to cut out those calories and Points, I just replaced the sugar with organic stevia. Honestly, I’m not a fan of artificial sweeteners of any kind, and I try to avoid them when I can. But there are some times where I just HAVE to have one of these Mint Lemonade Slushies, and I don’t want to blow a ton of my precious Smart Points to have one. So I use the Stevia, and this recipe ends up costing me 0 Points. Yay! When I make it for my kids, I sweeten it with honey instead of the Stevia, and they LOVE it. It’s not hard to see why….it is SO FLIPPING’ GOOD. It’s truly there perfect poolside drink. And if you want add some extra excitement and turn this into an adult beverage, feel free to blend it with some vodka or gin…just be sure to factor in those points. Enjoy!

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Easy Pico de Gallo Recipe – 0 Smart Points

Pico de Gallo

It’s Cinco de Mayo, and I’ve got nothing but Mexican food on my mind today! So, I’m sharing my favorite, super easy, authentic pico de gallo recipe. Not only do I use this 0 Smart points dish as a dip for tortilla chips, but I use it to top many other foods as well…chicken, fish, salads, sandwiches. My husband will even eat it straight up with a spoon! It may take a few attempts for you to customize this salsa recipe, and have it adjusted to your specific tastes. If you like it spicy, you may want to add a bit more jalapeño and garlic. If you want a slightly sweeter flavor, you may prefer red onion. But you really can’t go wrong with this…experimenting with the recipe is fun and delicious! My kids eat it a lot, so this is my mild version. It tastes so fresh and flavorful, I just can’t ever get enough of it. Good thing it’s 0 Points! Now, if we could just do something about those tortilla chips…

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Arabic Peanut Butter Power Bars – 5 Points +

Peanut Butter Power BarsPeanuts are central to the Arabic culture. In my last visit to Saudi Arabia, I’ve been introduced to an interesting local Peanut Bars. I forgot the name for these bars, but it was delicious. I’ve talked with one of the local guys and learned how to do these bars- and created my version, which is Arabic Peanut Butter bars. While traveling to the Arabic world, I’ve been introduced to the local casino guys- Daud from  at online-casino-arabic.com (an Arabic blog that covers the online gambling scene in the arabic world), explained to me that these bars are one of the local perks at the their casinos – while playing roulette, poker and slots, hosts will cater these interesting peanut gems. Online Roulette (or, as written in arabic روليت اون لاين), can definitely be a fun game, but- if you ever play at these casino, watch your pockets- it can be addictive.

So here’s the Peanut Butter Bars recipes. Give it a try!

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Red Pepper and Eggplant Dip Recipe – 2 Points +

Red Pepper and Eggplant Dip

When I need something to snack on, I try to reach for fresh, raw vegetables. Mainly because they are incredibly good for me, but also because their high fiber content can fill me up and prevent me from getting down and dirty with a not so Weight Watchers friendly food. So when you eat fresh veggies as much as I do, you are constantly on the lookout for delicious, exciting, and low calorie dips to dunk them in. And this Red Pepper and Eggplant Dip Recipe has become one of my favorites! The roasted bell peppers and eggplant add a lovely smokey flavor, while the garlic and lemon juice tie it all together with a brilliant zing. And each 1/3 cup serving is just 2 Points Plus, so I don’t need to feel guilty about my heavy dipping. This Red Pepper and Eggplant Dip makes a fantastic dunk for not only fresh veggies, but pita wedges, crackers, cheese…just about anything, really. You can also smother roasted vegetables or meats with it too, if you are looking for a way to give those foods an extra kick. You really can’t go wrong with such a light and healthy dip!

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Grilled Sesame Garlic Shishito Peppers – 1 Points +

Grilled Sesame Garlic Shishito Peppers

If you are new to the shishito pepper craze, don’t be worried that they are spicy. In fact, shishito peppers are actually very sweet and mild. And there are a ton of incredible shishito peppers recipes out there to try. One of the most popular, is an Asian style shishito pepper. The peppers are first cooked until charred, then tossed with some incredible garlic and Asian flavors. It’s SUPER easy and SUPER delicious. To eat them, simply hold the stem, and bite off the whole pepper, seeds and all. Quite honestly, this dish is never one that I never want to share. It’s so good, I could easily eat the whole thing myself. And the best thing is that each serving is just 1 Points +! Give these a try and they are sure to become a fast favorite of yours too.

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Healthy Chocolate Energy Shake – 2 Points Plus

Healthy Chocolate Energy Shake

Sometimes mid-morning instead of a snack, I make this easy healthy chocolate energy shake. One afternoon while at a vitamin and herbal shop, I picked up a couple of single packets of energy shake mixes. In the past, many of the shake mixes I bought weren’t very tasty and had a “grainy” taste to them. I was pleasantly surprised when I made this at home. I picked up a couple of packets of Spiru-Tein High Energy Protein and tried several flavors. The chocolate is amazing. You don’t necessarily need a blender, but I used one to make sure all the lumps were gone. This shake is filling and definitely held me over until lunch.

Healthy Chocolate Energy Shake – 2 Points +

This is a quick and easy mid-morning or mid-afternoon snack. This healthy chocolate energy shake is delicious is low-fat and low-calorie.

Ingredients

  • 1 1.13 oz Spiru-Tein Whey Protein Powder mix (Chocolate flavor is used for this recipe)
  • 1 cup Skim Milk

Instructions

  1. In a blender (I used a single serve blender) add milk and packet mix.
  2. Blend until well mixed.

Preparation time: 5 minute(s)

Cooking time: None

Diet type: Vegetarian

Diet tags: Low calorie, Reduced fat, Reduced carbohydrate, High protein

Number of servings (yield): 1

Culinary tradition: USA (General)

Calories: 180

Fat: 1

Protein: 14

Entire recipe makes: 1 serving
Serving size is about: 1 cup
Each serving = 2 Points +

PER SERVING: 180 calories; 1g fat; 9 g carbohydrates; 14 g protein; 1g fiber

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Tropical Strawberry Smoothie Recipe – 2 Points +

Tropical Strawberry Smoothie

Get a healthy dose of the tropics with this light and easy Tropical Strawberry Smoothie Recipe! I absolutely love this flavor combination, and each serving boasts a tremendous dose of vitamin C and potassium. With no added sugar, and all natural ingredients this smoothie makes a great idea for a healthy breakfast or snack on the go. My kids love this smoothie just as much as I do! I usually prefer to use mostly frozen fruits in this, just because it’s easy, and so I don’t have to add ice to make it cold. Fresh works great too, so no worries if that’s what you’ve got on hand. Each serving comes out to just 2 Points +, so you can indulge in a fabulous tasting smoothie without feeling any guilt.

Tropical Strawberry Smoothie

Cool and refreshing, this healthy smoothie has all the flavors of the tropics, but with zero guilt. Loaded with vitamin C, it’s a great cold buster too!

Ingredients

  • 2 cups strawberries
  • 1 cup mango
  • 1 orange, peeled
  • 1 cup pineapple, diced
  • 1 banana
  • 3 dates
  • 1 1/2 cups coconut water

Instructions

  1. Blend all ingredients in a blender, and process until smooth. Add additional coconut water, ice, or water to reach desired consistency.

Preparation time: 5 minute(s)

Cooking time:

Diet type: Vegan

Diet tags: Low calorie, Reduced fat, Gluten free, Raw

Number of servings (yield): 6

Culinary tradition: USA (General)

Calories: 89

Fat: 0g

Protein: 1g

Entire recipe makes 6 servings

Serving size is 1 cup

Each serving = 3 Smart Points/2 Points +

PER SERVING: 89 calories; 0g fat; 0g saturated fat; 24g carbohydrates; 1g sugar; 1g protein; 3g fiber

 

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