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This time of year, many of us are scaling down our portions in an attempt to slim down. Seeing a plate with less food on it can feel a bit skimpy, and feeling deprived is a quick way to derail weight loss efforts. Research shows that we tend to consume a similar volume of food at our meals, regardless of calorie content. The addition of bulky, low-calorie foods to your meal means your plate will be full, and so will you!
1. Try soup!
Soups are filling. Studies show that consuming a hot, broth-based soup results in fewer calories consumed during the rest of the meal.
Soups are a warm and comforting way to consume more veggies.
2. Pump up the veggies in your recipes!
Vegetables are low in calories and high in fiber. Adding veggies to bulk up recipes will add nutrition, and help keep you full longer.
By adding vegetables to pasta, rice or casserole dishes, you will be able to enjoy a larger serving without adding calories.
3. Serve meals with low-calorie sides
Add a salad of crisp greens. Studies show that simply by eating a salad with your meal, you tend to eat fewer calories.
Try a sliced apple or low-fat yogurt alongside your main dish. Once again, you're adding nutrition with minimal calories.
Winter Kale Soup
All you need:
l¼ cup olive oil
1 bunch green top carrots, chopped
1 sleeve celery, chopped
1 large yellow onion, diced
2 Tbsp. minced garlic
2 medium zucchini, diced
1 bunch kale, chopped
1 sleeve poultry herbs, minced
2 – 3 quarts hot water
1 small can tomato paste
½ jar Better than Bouillon Mushroom Base
All you do:
Heat an 8-qt stock pot or Dutch oven over medium high heat. Add olive oil and sauté carrots, celery, onion, and garlic until onion becomes translucent (about 10 min). Add zucchini and sauté 5-7 min. Add kale and herbs. Sauté until kale is wilted (3-4 min). Add hot water, sufficient to cover vegetables. Stir in tomato paste and mushroom base. Cover and bring to a simmer. Uncover and simmer 10 – 15 minutes.
Source: Mount Vernon Road Hy-Vee Executive Chef, Cara Ullrich
Shrimp Fried Rice
All you need:
2 ½ cups cooked and cooled instant brown rice
2 Tbsp. hoisin sauce
4 tsp. reduced-sodium soy sauce
2 tsp. toasted sesame oil
4 tsp. canola oil, divided
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
8 oz. peeled and deveined raw small shrimp
2 Tbsp. minced fresh ginger
1 bag sugar snap peas
1 medium red bell pepper, cut into ½ inch pieces
2 medium carrot, thinly sliced
4 green onions, chopped
All you do:
1. Combine the hoisin sauce, soy sauce and sesame oil in a small bowl; set aside.
2. Heat 1 tsp. canola oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add eggs and cook, stirring to help break into smaller pieces, until just set, about 45 seconds. Transfer the egg into a bowl.
3. Add another teaspoon canola oil to the skillet and return to medium-high heat. Add shrimp and cook, stirring occasionally, until pink, 1 ½-2 minutes. Transfer the shrimp to the bowl.
4. Heat the remaining 2 tsp. oil in the skillet over medium-high heat. Add ginger and cook about 30 seconds. Stir in snap peas, bell pepper, carrots and scallions. Cook 3-4 minutes. Stir in the rice and reserved egg and shrimp; cook until heated through, about 1 minute. Remove from heat and gently stir in the sauce mixture.