Sunday, May 9, 2010

Flavor Explosion

When trying to eat healthy, most people usually turn to the bland and the easy: plain, skinless, boneless chicken, baked with a baked potato, or plain brown rice, and lots of vegetables. Salads have no cheese or croutons with fat free dressing on the side. In a Weight Watchers Weekly from the week of February 28, they share some awesome ways to kick your food up a notch with flavor, without adding calories to your meals.

Boost the Flavor

By: Leslie Fink, MS, RD. (Weight Watchers Nutritionist)

Some simple ways to jazz up standbys:


Try low fat chicken sausage or lean ground chicken in tacos or burgers. Cook with fresh herbs and freshly squeezed citrus juice. Cube leftover chicken breast and toss into frittatas and salads, or on top of baked nachos.

Green Salad

Make peppery arugula your base green, or crunchy romaine. Add sliced red pepper for color and sweetness. A little cubed avocado adds healthy fat and a lush texture. Top with a bit of crumbled French Feta (creamier and less salty than Greek) or diced apple. Flavorful adding means you can use less dressing or a splash of balsamic vinegar. Freshly squeezed lemon juice over the salad also jazzes it up with out dressing.


Toss some in your soup for crouton free crunch. Put air popped popcorn in a bowl and spritz with cooking spray. Then, for a spicy treat without adding calories, shake on a blend of chili powder, cumin, paprika, salt, and garlic powder. Prefer it sweet? Dust on a little powdered sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice.

A wholesome spin on the classic pie: whole wheat pizza dough topped with thinly sliced, sauteed zucchini, halved grape tomatoes, salt, pepper, and fresh basil. Sprinkle with a full-fat freshly grated parmesan such as parmigiano-reggiano. Since these are strongly flavored cheese, you only need a small amount). Thinly sliced precooked chicken or turkey sausage is a zesty swap for pepperoni. Grilling pizza adds wonderful smokiness.


For a satisfying snack, slice a banana over peanut butter on whole wheat toast. Experiment with baby bananas you'll see at the grocery store, which are sweeter. Whirl a banana into a smoothie to give your drink a richer feel (and to make it more nutritious and filling)


Slice broccoli very thin, coat with cooking spray, sprinkle with kosher salt, roast, and toss wth a little parmesan or bread crumbs. For a healthier "cream" of broccoli soup, puree well-seasoned boiled broccoli in broth; add lowfat milk toward the end of cooking.