Whole-Wheat Spaghetti with Swiss Chard and Pecorino Cheese

Whole-Wheat Spaghetti
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 bunches Swiss chard, trimmed and chopped (about 14 cups)
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 (14 1/2-ounce) can diced tomatoes with juices
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper flakes
  • Salt and pepper
  • 8 ounces whole-wheat spaghetti
  • 1/4 cup pitted kalamata olives, coarsely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons freshly grated Pecorino cheese
  • 2 tablespoons toasted pine nuts

Heat the oil in a heavy large frying pan over medium heat. Add the onions and saute until tender, about 8 minutes. Add the chard and saute until it wilts, about 2 minutes. Add the garlic and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in the tomatoes with their juices, wine, and red pepper flakes. Bring to a simmer. Cover and simmer until the tomatoes begin to break down and the chard is very tender, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Season the chard mixture, to taste, with salt and pepper.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the spaghetti and cook until tender but still firm to the bite, stirring frequently, about 8 to 10 minutes. Drain the spaghetti. Add the spaghetti to the chard mixture and toss to combine.

Transfer the pasta to serving bowls. Sprinkle the olives, cheese, and pine nuts and serve.

Cook Time | 20 minutes     Level | Easy     Yields | 4 servings

Bruschetta with White Beans, Sun-dried Tomatoes and Basil

Orange Banana Smoothie
Ingredients - For the Beans
  • 3/4 cup cannelloni beans
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
Ingredients - For the bruschetta and topping
  • 1 small baguette, sliced into thick pieces
  • 1 tablespoon thinly sliced garlic, plus 1 garlic clove, peeled, for coating bread
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili flakes
  • 8 to 10 basil leaves
  • 1/3 cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained and sliced
  • 1/4-inch thick
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • Lemon juice
  • Salt and fresh black pepper
  • 2 ounces ricotta salata cheese, grated large


Rinse the beans well and then put in a 1-quart saucepan. Cover with water to 1-inch over the top of the beans. On medium-high heat, bring to a boil. Immediately take the pot away from the burner, cover and hold for 1 hour. Change the water; add half of the extra-virgin olive oil, 1 garlic clove and the bay leaf. Cook beans on low. Simmer for about 40 minutes or until tender. During last 10 minutes, add 1/2 teaspoon salt. Stir in carefully. Remove from heat and hold in the saucepan with the cooking liquid until cool. This may be done 1 to 2 days before serving, and kept refrigerated.

Bruschetta Topping

Preheat a grill or stove-top grill pan.

Grill the bread on both sides until crispy. Be careful on high heat as bread burns easily.

While bread is grilling, in a saute pan on medium heat, toast the sliced garlic in the olive oil. When it is light golden, add the chili flakes, cook for 10 seconds and then add the basil leaves. Do this carefully, as the basil may spatter some oil.

With a slotted spoon, transfer the beans to the pan. Add 1 to 2 tablespoons of the bean cooking liquid (or liquid from canned beans) and mix all together. Hold warm. Adjust consistency, as necessary, with the bean liquid, a little at a time.

When the basil leaves are wilted, remove mixture from the heat. Add the sun-dried tomatoes and chopped parsley. Toss to combine and adjust the seasoning with lemon juice, to taste, and salt and pepper.

Lightly swipe the remaining garlic clove on 1 side of the bread. Arrange the toasted bruschetta on a serving platter and drizzle with the remaining extra-virgin olive oil. Top each piece with some of the tomato-bean mixture, then evenly divide the ricotta salata over the mixture. Serve warm.

Prep Time | 5 minutes     Level | Intermediate     Yields | 3 servings

Orange Banana Smoothie

Orange Banana Smoothie
  • 1 1/2 cups freshly squeezed orange juice (4 oranges)
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 cup strawberries, tops removed, and cut in 1/2
  • 1 to 1 1/2 ripe bananas

Combine the orange juice, lime juice, strawberries, and banana in a blender and process until smooth. Refrigerate until cold.

Cook Time | 1 hour     Level | Easy     Yields | 4 servings

Three Bean and Beef Chili

Three Bean and Beef Chili
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced (1 cup)
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced (1 cup)
  • 2 carrots, diced (1/2 cup)
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 pound extra-lean ground beef (90 percent lean)
  • 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 chipotle chile in adobo sauce, seeded and minced
  • 2 teaspoons adobo sauce from the can of chipotles
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 (15.5-ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (15.5-ounce) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (15.5-ounce) can pinto beans, drained and rinsed

Heat the oil in large pot or Dutch oven over moderate heat. Add the onion, bell pepper and carrots, cover and cook, stirring occasionally until the vegetables are soft, about 10 minutes. Add the cumin and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the ground beef; raise the heat to high and cook, breaking up the meat with a spoon, until the meat is no longer pink. Stir in the tomatoes, water, chipotle and adobo sauce, oregano and salt and pepper. Cook, partially covered, stirring from time to time, for 30 minutes. Stir in the beans and continue cooking, partially covered, 20 minutes longer. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper.

Cook Time | 1 hour 10 minutes     Level | Easy     Yields | 10 cups (serves 8, serving size 1 1/4 cup)

Salmon with Lemon, Capers, and Rosemary

Salmon with Lemon
  • 4 (6-ounce) salmon fillets
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary leaves
  • 8 lemon slices (about 2 lemons)
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice (about 1 lemon)
  • 1/2 cup Marsala wine (or white wine)
  • 4 teaspoons capers
  • 4 pieces of aluminum foil

Brush top and bottom of salmon fillets with olive oil and season with salt, pepper, and rosemary. Place each piece of seasoned salmon on a piece of foil large enough to fold over and seal. Top the each piece of salmon with 2 lemon slices, 1 tablespoon of lemon juice, 2 tablespoons of wine, and 1 teaspoon of capers. Wrap up salmon tightly in the foil packets.

Place a grill pan over medium-high heat or preheat a gas or charcoal grill. Place the foil packets on the hot grill and cook for 10 minutes for a 1-inch thick piece of salmon. Serve in the foil packets.

Cook Time | 10 minutes     Level | Easy     Yields | 4 Servings

Chicken Piccata with Pasta and Mushrooms

  • 6 ounces whole-wheat angel hair pasta
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour, divided
  • 2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 4 chicken cutlets (3/4-1 pound total), trimmed
  • 3 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 10-ounce package mushrooms, sliced
  • 3 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoons capers, rinsed
  • 2 teaspoons butter

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add pasta and cook until just tender, 4 to 6 minutes or according to package directions. Drain and rinse.

Meanwhile, whisk 5 teaspoons flour and broth in a small bowl until smooth. Place the remaining flour in a shallow dish. Season chicken with 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper and dredge both sides in the flour. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the chicken and cook until browned and no longer pink in the middle, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate; keep warm.

Heat the remaining 1 teaspoon oil in the pan over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms and cook, stirring, until they release their juices and begin to brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Add garlic and wine to the pan and cook until reduced by half, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in the reserved broth-flour mixture, lemon juice and the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring, until the sauce is thickened, about 5 minutes.

Stir in parsley, capers, butter and the reserved mushrooms. Measure out 1/2 cup of the mushroom sauce. Toss the pasta in the pan with the remaining sauce. Serve the pasta topped with the chicken and the reserved sauce.

Prep Time | 40 minutes     Level | Easy     Yields | 4 Servings

Red Velvet Insanity Cupcakes

Cupcake Image

Total time: 45 minutes, plus cooling time for the cupcakes

Servings: Makes 12 cupcakes

Note: Adapted from "Hungry Girl: 200 Under 200: 200 Recipes Under 200 Calories" by Lisa Lillien. Lillien writes, "You'd have to be insane to not flip over these brightly colored little cakes."/


6 tablespoons Jet-Puffed Marshmallow Creme
1/4 cup fat-free cream cheese, at room temperature
1 tablespoon granulated Splenda No Calorie Sweetener
6 tablespoons Cool Whip Free, thawed


In a medium mixing bowl, combine the marshmallow creme, cream cheese and sweetener and mix well. Fold in the Cool Whip and refrigerate, covered, until the cupcakes are ready to be frosted. This makes about two-thirds cup frosting.


1/4 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips, divided
2 (25-calorie) packets diet hot cocoa mix
1/2 cup boiling water
1 cup cold water
1 cup moist-style devil's food cake mix ( 1/4 of an 18.25-ounce box)
1 cup moist-style yellow cake mix ( 1/4 of an 18.25-ounce box)
1/2 cup fat-free liquid egg substitute
1 tablespoon red food coloring
1 teaspoon granulated Splenda No Calorie Sweetener
1/8 teaspoon salt
Nonstick cooking spray, optional


  1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a tall glass, place half of the mini chocolate chips and the contents of both cocoa packets. Add the boiling water and stir until the chips and cocoa mix have dissolved. Add the cold water and mix well.
  3. Pour the cocoa mixture into a large mixing bowl. Add the cake mixes, egg substitute, remaining chocolate chips, food coloring, sweetener and salt. Whisk until smooth and blended, about 2 minutes. The batter will be thin, but don't worry -- your cupcakes will puff up once baked!
  4. Line a 12-cup muffin pan with baking cups or spray with nonstick spray. Evenly distribute the batter among the cups. Bake in the oven until puffed and shiny and the cakes spring back lightly when touched, 15 to 20 minutes.
  5. Cool the cupcakes completely, then evenly distribute the frosting over the tops.

Each cupcake: 149 calories; 4 grams protein; 25 grams carbohydrates; 1 gram fiber; 4 grams fat; 2 grams saturated fat; 3 mg. cholesterol; 262 mg. sodium.

Chick Pea Salad

Chickpea Image

Break out of the "salad must contain lettuce" frame of mind and try something new! Salads made with lots of beans are healthy and full of fiber. This salad can be made with chickpeas, black beans, kidney beans, or black-eyed peas—they're all delicious.


Water for blanching
1 cup broccoli florets
1 15-oz. can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained
1 tomato, diced
1 stalk celery, sliced
1/4 cup low fat/fat free mayonnaise or salad dressing
2 Tbsp. lemon juice
1 clove garlic, minced
1 Tbsp. minced fresh parsley
1 Tbsp. chopped onion
Pepper, to taste


  • Bring the water to a boil. Add the broccoli and cook for about 2 minutes, then transfer to a colander and immediately run under cold water to stop the cooking process
  • In a medium bowl, mix all the ingredients until just combined
  • Serve over lettuce
  • Makes 2 servings as a meal and 4 servings as a side dish

Pizza Bianca

Pizza Image


Ready made pizza crust (Boboli brand, for example)
1/8 cup extra-virgin olive oil
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 16 ounce pkg. shredded, reduced fat mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup sliced onion
1/4 cup sliced kalamata olives
1/4 cup quartered canned or bottled artichoke hearts, drained
Pepper, to taste


  • Combine the olive oil with the garlic and let sit for about 15 minutes.
  • Place pizza shell on a pizza pan or baking sheet.
  • Top with the olive oil and garlic mixture.
  • Sprinkle the cheese onto the pizza.
  • Top with the onions, olives, and artichokes.
  • Bake at 450°F for 10 minutes or until edge of crust is browned and cheese is melted.

Makes 1 pizza