Homemade Chipotle Cholesterol Free Mayonnaise – 3 Smart Points

Homemade Chipotle Cholesterol Free Mayonnaise

The funny thing about mayonnaise, is that I always hated it as a kid. For some reason, I could never get on board with the flavor. Nowadays, as a an adult, I am full-fledged, car carrying mayo lover. If it wasn’t so high in Points, I’d eat it straight out the jar with a spoon. In fact, my love for mayo has led me to get a little experimental in making my own, homemade mayonnaise recipes. Recently, I tried making a cholesterol free version, using just the egg white instead of the whole egg. And I used less oil. For added kick, I added in some chopped up chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. This turned out to be the BEST DECISION EVER. I cannot even begin to tell you how good this is. Im actually eating a grilled ham and cheese sandwich right now, with some if this Homemade Chipotle Cholesterol Free Mayonnaise because just writing about it was driving me mad. I needed to eat it…NOW. Super easy to make, and though its not as low in Smart Points as I wanted it to be, it is still cholesterol free and absolutely delicious. Totally worth the 3 Points per serving. Treat yo’self!

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Chicken Enchilada Casserole Recipe – 8 Smart Points

Chicken Enchilada Casserole

Mexican food is my happy place. In fact, I have yet to try a Mexican dish that I didn’t like, and the good things is that many Mexican food recipes can be petty easily adjusted to suit my Weight Watchers plan. This is great, because I eat it ALL.THE.TIME. One of my favorite Mexican foods are enchiladas…..cheese enchiladas, chicken enchiladas, shredded beef enchiladas…you name it. I ADORE them. But when making them at home, I sometimes have an issues with rolling up those corn tortillas without having them break apart. I’ve tried a few tricks, and I can make it work, but it’s still a pain. So I decided to try doing some chicken enchiladas in casserole form and the result was AMAZING. Seriously, amigos. This dish is soooooo goooood. I actually just made these for dinner last night, and couldn’t wait to post them here on the blog for you to try! Feel free to top them with any extras you see fit…jalapeños, sour cream, diced red onions….whatever floats your boat. This Chicken Enchilada Casserole was loved by the whole family and I highly recommend you get in the kitchen and make this bambino ASAP.

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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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Chickpea “Salsa” – 3 Smart Points

Chickpea Salad

I really like to use beans in things because it makes it much lower in fat than meat, but it’s still a great source of protein. Beans are also a great source of fiber – which really helps when you’re trying to eat healthy and lose weight. The fiber helps to fill you up and when you feel full longer, you’re less likely to eat as much. They’re also so handy to have on hand. I usually just have a variety of canned beans on hand (several cans of each) so that I have them ready to go when a recipe calls for them. I wanted to do something with fresh garden vegetables, but something with a definitely Mediterranean flavor to it. I ended up combining a couple of recipes, including one with a really tasty oil and vinegar dressing. I used a low calorie pita bread as a scoop and I fell in love with it. It’s easy to put together and right now you can get garden fresh veggies and herbs to put in this. It’s fabulous fresh, and (I think) even better after it’s had a day or two to marinate. While I had it with pita bread the first time, it really wasn’t necessary. It was just as good with a spoon! This will definitely become a favorite salad for my lunch options. [Read more…]

Smothered Pork Chops – 6 Smart Points

Pork Chop

I always enjoy spicing up the same old dishes. It’s fun to take something that we have on a regular basis and make it in a new and different way. My two favorite ways of making pork chops is to grill them or bake them and then smother them in either apples and onions or with homemade applesauce. However, it’s kind of fun to do something different and I really enjoy one dish meals, where I can just toss everything in together and then just put together something quick and easy for the side dish – like a side salad or some steamed broccoli. For us, it’s the perfect Sunday dinner, ready for us when we walk back in the door after church. The pork chops turned out succulent and juicy. Full of flavor but and moist! One of the tricks of this, I’ve found, is to sear the meat first in a fry pan and it helps to seal in the juices. In my experience, bone in pork chops also helps with this. Then just mix together the apples, potatoes & spices and bake it all. Once it’s done, add your favorite vegetables (or whatever you happen to have on hand) and you’ve got a delicious meal ready to go. [Read more…]

Simple Kale Salad Recipe – 2 Smart Points

Simple Kale Salad

You guys. My kids ate this salad. MY KIDS ATE KALE. A ton of it! If that’s not a selling point for a recipe, I don’t know what is. This kid friendly, Simple Kale salad Recipe is not only a breeze to make, it’s absolutely delicious! The key in this dish, is to NOT be gentle with the kale when mixing everything together, and to let the salad sit for at least an hour. Do NOT skip this step! It’s what helps the kale tenderize a bit, and allows the flavor of the dressing to soak through the strongly flavored kale. Also, because I’m lazy, I used a bag of pre-washed and prepared kale mix that I found at Whole Foods. It just saved me the extra steps of trimming my own kale. And the roasted pumpkin seeds add such a nice extra crunch and nutty flavor. Seriously, sooooo yummy!

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Jam Squares – 3 Smart Points

Jam Squares

While I always try to make the healthiest choices and snack on fruit and vegetables, there is nothing like a treat every once and a while. I really like to have cookies on hand. That way I can have a sweet treat for dessert after lunch, or as a mid afternoon pick-me-up without too much effort. Although I’ll admit, with the number of “sweet treats” I post here, it looks doubtful that I actually do snack on fruits and vegetables. I wanted to do something different than my typical chocolate chip cookies. I thought I’d do shortbread cookies (one of my favorites) with a twist. I decided to add jam to the centers of the shortbread cookies. [Read more…]

Mini Cherry Pies – 10 Smart Points

Sweet cherry pie.

I typically do most of the cooking in our house. We have a great deal – one cooks and the other one cleans. However, there is one thing that my husband does that is far, far superior to my efforts. Pie – my husband makes incredible pies. We usually have a number of pie fillings (peach and apple) made up and frozen so all he has to do is make the crust and plop in the filling. However, recently, I thought it’d be fun to have a slight change from the normal. So, instead of the usual large pie, we made little individual cherry pies. They were amazing. It was really fun to have little individual pies that we could share with some ice cream for a sweet treat after dinner one night. The remainder can be easily frozen so that they’re ready to thaw, warm and serve. It’s a great way for me to practice portion control, since it’s always very tempting to have another piece.

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Spinach & Beet Salad – 7 Smart Points

Healthy Beet Salad with fresh sweet baby spinach, kale lettuce, nuts, feta cheese and toast  melted

I have gotten out of the habit of salads for lunch. I went through a couple of weeks where I had a delicious mandarin chicken salad with ginger sesame dressing for lunch every day. But it’s been about 3 weeks since I’ve had salads for lunch, what with all the leftovers we’ve had. So I decided to break that streak with a fresh spinach salad. I enjoy baby spinach, so I thought I’d start with a pile of that on my plate. Top the spinach with tender, roasted beets that have been thinly sliced. I sprinkled on a little fat free feta and a few walnuts. Then I simply drizzle over a couple of tablespoons of my favorite fat free vinaigrette. It was a great way to get myself back into the healthier choices for lunch. It was bright, refreshing and incredibly delicious. [Read more…]

Spinach, Artichoke, and White Bean Soup Recipe – 6 Smart Points

Spinach, Artichoke, and White Bean Soup

We are still in the midst of summer, but savory fall foods are already filling up my brain, and I’ve already started working on some new seasonal recipes! A recent one that I whipped up is this Spinach, Artichoke, and White Bean Soup. I’m a HUGE fan of artichokes, and this soup definitely delivers their amazing flavor. Every spoonful is bursting with their unique flavor, but softened a bit by the creamy, mild beans and velvety broth. It’s a pretty quick and easy recipe to make, which is great when you don’t have much time or energy on your hands. But it’s hearty enough to be satisfying, and can easily be served as a main dish or a side. Loaded with protein, fiber and iron, this Spinach, Artichoke, and White Bean Soup is as nurturing as it is delicious. Enjoy!

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Moroccan Spiced Shrimp Over Garbanzo Bean Salad – 4 Smart Points

Moroccan Spiced Shrimp Over Garbanzo Bean Salad

With the beautiful summer weather we’ve been having, my husband has been outside grilling food on a very regular basis. And today’s recipe for Moroccan Spiced Shrimp Over Garbanzo Bean Salad was actually inspired by 5 year old who LOVES shrimp! On a recent beach excursion, we stopped to have lunch at a local, seaside restaurant, and my daughter was begging to order anything with shrimp. We opted to get her this dish, and she absolutely loved it. I tried my best to replicate the version from the restaurant, and I’m pretty pleased with the results…it turned out delicious and very light at just 4 Smart Points per serving. Of course, the final approval came from the harshest critic, my little girl herself, and she vehemently approved. So if you are looking for a new grilling recipe to try this summer, get this one on your menu ASAP!

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Carrot Cake Pancakes with Blueberries – 5 Smart Points

Blueberry Pancakes

Saturdays I usually make a delicious brunch. Pancakes are one of my favorite things to make on days like that. I recently found a carrot cake pancake recipe and thought I’d give it a try. I really liked it. The carrot is a mild flavor that adds moisture to the pancakes – much like zucchini in chocolate cake. I topped mine with fat free Greek yogurt and fresh blueberries. I added a little bit of maple syrup for a little extra sweet – and it was delicious. Be sure to grate the carrots by hand, the store-bought grated carrots are just too coarse and you’ll end up feeling like you’re eating carrot stick pancakes. Hand grated carrots are much more fine and tender, so they just melt into the flavor of the pancake. Give these delicious dessert-like pancakes a try – you won’t be disappointed! [Read more…]