Pasta is one of my kids’ favorite meals, so I find myself making it a lot. The problem is, I also love pasta, but those noodles always end up making the dish too high in Points for me to eat it. So I’m always looking for an alternative way to enjoy my favorite pasta dish, without having to use actual pasta. “Zoodles” has always been a preferred option of mine, but recently I decided to try roasted cauliflower instead, and I have to say, I like it even BETTER! You guys — it is really, really good!! The cauliflower is so mild, it picks up the flavor of the sauce, and is a great way to enjoy a guilt free pasta dish. I recently tried it with my light bolognese sauce, and it was absolutely amazing! What a great way to pack in more nutrition, enjoy a delicious and decadent pasta dish, and not use too many Smart Points. I’ll definitely be trying roasted cauliflower as a substitute for pasta in some other popular Italian recipes too. Enjoy!
Turning traditional, fussy dishes into a simpler casserole version has been one of my favorite cooking pastimes recently. We are all big stuffed pepper fans over here, so I thought I’d make an attempt to turn it into a casserole instead, which turned out to be a fantastic idea! You get all the wonderful flavors of the customary stuffed peppers, but with less effort and an easier to eat form. Plus, this Weight Watchers dinner recipe was easy to freeze and store in individual serving containers, so that I could have a healthy meal easily available when needed. It was delicious, satisfying, and just 5 Smart Points per serving. We’ll definitely be adding this dish into regular rotation around here!
Now that temperatures are starting to heat up here in California (sorry, East Coast), I’ve been craving meals that are fresh and light, as opposed to rich and comforting. One that I tried recently was this delicious Italian Chicken Bruschetta. Bruschetta, if you’ve never had it, is kinda like Italian salsa. It’s a simple blend of fresh tomatoes, basil and garlic. It is incredibly easy to make, but the flavor is wonderfully bright and complex. I decided to use it on top of some simple grilled chicken breasts, and the result was divine! You can grill your chicken, roast it, or pan fry it — whichever you prefer. The fresh bruschetta on top is the perfect complement. This is also magnificent as a sandwich with some fresh Italian bread and some creamy goat cheese – one of my most favorite sandwiches ever! The flavors are so bold and mouthwateringly good. So grab some tomatoes and basil, and give this chicken bruschetta recipe a try….you’ll be so glad you did!
When I’m feeling a little fancy, this easy Italian Herbed Chicken in a Creamy Mushroom Wine Sauce Recipe is just the ticket. I had something similar once at an Italian restaurant in Los Angeles, and I was blown away by how rich and flavorful this dish was. So I recreated a lightened up version myself, and it’s pretty amazing. First of all, I love ANY sauce with red wine in it. Seriously, I will just eat it all up with my spoon and then lick the plate. And the red wine sauce simmered with milk and parmesan cheese is oh so heavenly. Most recipes that have a creamy sauce use heavy cream which can really increase the Weight Watchers points. By using milk and a bit of cornstarch, this dish delivers the perfect consistency and flavor with a LOT less saturated fat and calories. My kids ate this over steamed rice, with a side of roasted brussel sprouts. It was sooooo good! If you want to up your chicken dinner game, try this Italian Herbed Chicken in a Creamy Mushroom Wine Sauce recipe and wow your whole family!
I used to cook a lot of recipes with coconut milk, but I have been reluctant to do so ever since the new Weight Watchers Smart Points plan came into effect. Coconut milk is high in saturated fat, so I was concerned that it would raise the Smart Points value of my recipe too much. But I was pleasantly surprised when this Salmon Curry recipe turned out to be less Points than I anticipated! Sometimes, you just gotta eat the good stuff and spend the extra Point or two. And this dish is definitely worth it. Plus, it’s such a fast and easy meal to cook, and works excellently with frozen salmon (which I prefer to buy because it costs less!). The salmon is perfectly poached in the coconut milk, and the mild curry flavor was just the right amount without being too spicy, so my kids could enjoy it as well. I had this on the table in less than 30 minutes, and it was insanely good! For the kids and my husband, I served it over quinoa, and for myself, I served it over cauliflower rice in order to avoid having to add more Points. Truly, the cauliflower rice was delicious! I actually liked it even better than the quinoa. This was such a fantastically flavorful and healthy meal that left me feeling completely satisfied. So glad I decided to get back on the coconut milk train! Enjoy.
|4 servings||5 minutes|
A delicious and easy way to prepare salmon, this decadent yet light curry recipe gets a healthy meal on the table in minutes. The tender salmon is perfectly poached in the creamy coconut milk and absolutely melts in your mouth.
- 1 lb salmon skinless, cut into cubes
- 1 large leek thinly sliced
- 1 tsp coconut oil
- 1 15 oz can reduced fat coconut milk
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 2 tsp curry powder
- 1 tbsp fresh ginger root minced/grated
- 1 tbsp reduced sodium soy sauce
- 1 6 oz bag fresh greens (I used a spinach, kale, and chard mix)
- Juice from 1/2 a lime
- Salt and pepper to taste
Entire recipe makes 4 servings
Serving size is about 1 cup
Each serving = 9 Smart Points
PER SERVING: 275 calories; 18g fat; 11g saturated fat; 4.5g carbohydrates; 0g fiber; 1g sugar; 24g protein
If you’ve never had it/heard if it before, picadillo is a traditional and popular dish that is a staple in Cuban cuisine. It’s basically a tender stew of ground beef and tomatoes, with cinnamon and/or raisins added for sweetness, and olives added for salt. It’s typically served over rice, but also works great as a stuffing for empanadas, quesadillas or wraps. It smells and tastes heavenly, and is the ultimate in Cuban comfort food. This recipe is favorite of my kids’ and always gets gobbled up. They eat it with the rice, and my husband and I just ate it as is. To keep it healthy and Weight Watchers friendly, I just used an extra lean ground beef and used cinnamon instead of raisins. It was incredibly fast and easy to make, and was absolutely divine. Truly a satisfying and indigent dish that is totally guilt free. I highly recommend giving this one a try!
Our family is on a quinoa eating kick lately, and I’m taking advantage of it my cooking as many Weight Watchers quinoa recipes as I can! Today’s recipe is just a simple Greek salad with quinoa as the base, instead of lettuce. This makes an amazing side dish to accompany any fish or chicken meal. But you can also make this as a main course salad simply by adding some grilled chicken or fish right on top of it. I just adore the texture and nutty flavor that the quinoa adds to it. And it’s so much more filling than a standard salad! This Greek quinoa salad is so incredibly flavorful, and I’ll often serve it on top of a bed of butter lettuce and top it with some grilled chicken and veggies for a very satisfying meal! It makes a great dish to take to potlucks and barbecues too, so if you are looking for some ideas of dishes to take along and share, this is it. Enjoy!
On a trip to Israel a few years ago, my husband and I stopped at this amazing Arabic restaurant in Jerusalem. And of all the fantastic foods I got to try on my visit, I will never forget the fattoush salad I had there. IT WAS AMAZING. I know that may sound crazy…to be so blow away by a salad, but the incredible flavor combination of this traditional arabic salad was divine. Fresh mint and parsley, combined with cucumbers, tomatoes, red onions, and warm toasted pita bread, then topped off with a tangy vinegar garlic dressing and crumbled feta cheese. So good!! Bit the best part about this salad was the addition of a popular Middle Eastern spice called sumac. This is what sealed the deal and made this Arabic Fattoush salad so incredibly delicious! At the restaurant, I was introduced to the owner’s friend who runs an online casino, Casino Arbi. We had a great chat about some foods and seasonings that were central to Arabic culture, and as soon as I returned to the states, I got into the kitchen to try and recreate some of the fantastic foods that I enjoyed and learned about. Sumac has since become a staple in my kitchen now. I love it on salads, meats, and on tops of steamed rice. So today, I’m sharing my recreation of the Arabic Fattoush salad….and it’s just 2 Smart Points per serving. This one is a must try!
Quinoa, like rice, is one of those versatile grains that you can do so much with. This simple, healthy Quinoa and Black Bean Salad Recipe is not only a breeze to throw together, it’s flavorful, satisfying, and just 5 Smart Points per serving. It’s a perfect side dish to just about any meal. I’ll even use leftovers on top of a salad for lunch the next day! The quinoa has a lot of fiber, protein, and nutrients, so it’s a much healthier alternative to rice. Though, some do not like the slightly nutty, earthy taste of the quinoa. But in this recipe, the lime, garlic, and cilantro really help to balance out that flavor, so it’s an ideal quinoa recipe for anyone who may not be a huge fan of quinoa. Even my kids will eat this cold in their lunch boxes. At just 5 Smart Points per serving, my Quinoa and Black Bean Salad Recipe is a great Weight Watchers side dish recipe to fill you with nutrition and help keep you on track.
If you’ve ever been to a good Italian restaurant and ordered Chicken Piccata, then you know how absolutely delicious this dish can be. Simple, yet tremendously flavorful. There’s an amazing Italian restaurant not too far from me that I paid a recent visit too (I was craving their breadsticks, but that’s a different story). I decided to try their chicken piccata because of the sauce description in the menu. It was a bit different from most chicken piccatas I’ve had before, and the description had me salivating. Rather than a traditional lemon/wine sauce, they used a creamy Parmesan sauce instead. And for anyone who knows me well, cheese is my weakness. I CANNOT RESIST IT. So I decided to use my “flex” Points and splurge, and it was well worth it! And then I made up my mind to recreate a healthier and lighter version at home so that I could some more regular, guilt free indulging. The creamy, lemony sauce is like a river of velvet in your mouth, and the tender, juicy chicken breasts are the perfect vehicle for that heavenly sauce! I ate this right off the plate, but my kids enjoyed theirs over pasta. Next time, I’ll try serving it over some zoodles. This Creamy Lemon Chicken Piccata is the ultimate in gourmet comfort food!
So apparently, this “crack slaw” thing is a big deal. I’ve been hearing all about it lately, and with such an interesting name, I had to see what in the world it was. Crack slaw is basically just a simple stir fry made with cabbage and ground beef that is supposed to be so incredibly delicious that it’s addictive. Just like crack. Given that it’s high in protein, and low in sugar and carbs, I knew this would be a perfect Weight Watchers recipe to try. So I did a bit if research, and came up with my own version of crack slaw. I choose to use ground chicken instead of ground beef to lower the fat content, added in some broccoli slaw I had on hand, and made a few tweaks to the seasoning. And I have to say, this was pretty darn good! You could definitely play around with this and incorporate any veggies you’d like. Red bell pepper, snow peas, mushrooms are a few great options. And at just 2 Smart Points per serving, this Weight Watchers recipe could be a life saver!
Well, my favorite team didn’t make it to the Super Bowl (so close, though!), but that doesn’t mean I won’t partake in Super Bowl festivities! And where there’s a Super Bowl party, there’s food…lots of yummy food. To keep myself on track, I like to bring along a big pot of this delicious Crock Pot Chicken Taco Chili to share. It is SO good, and always a hit on game day. When I take it to a party, I bring along a bag of tortilla chips with it, along with diced onions, avocados, shredded cheese, and sliced jalapeños…some of my favorite taco toppings. This give people the option of dipping the chips in it, or just eating it like a traditional chili – straight out of the bowl. And everyone LOVES it! It’s a Weight Watchers Super Bowl recipe that is super easy to make, freezes wonderfully, and tastes incredible. If you want to feel like you are indulging without actually indulging, this Crock Pot Chicken Taco Chili Recipe will do the trick. It’ll definitely be on our game day menu this year!