Banana Oatmeal Muffins: All the taste and none of the guilt

These moist and flavorful muffins make a perfect on-the-go breakfast or afternoon snack. Unlike tempting, empty calorie baked goods, this month’s healthy muffin recipe is tasty and guilt-free. Yogurt replaces some of the oil in the recipe and keeps the muffins moist. Consider freezing an extra batch to have on hand for those cold winter mornings or unexpected visitors.

Pecan Encrusted Tilapia

Adapted from a Washington Post recipe, this healthy and flavorful fish dish can transform a seafood skeptic or picky eater. It features a combination of pecans and Cajun spices, which give the mild, flaky-white tilapia a crunchy crust and punch of savory flavor. Yield: 4 servings INGREDIENTS 2/3 cup shelled, unsalted pecans 1/2 sweet/mild paprika 1/4 tsp granulated garlic (powder) 1/4 tsp dried thyme 1/4 tsp salt 1/8 tsp freshly ground black pepper 1/8 tsp ground cayenne pepper 1 1/4 pounds tilapia fillets 1 tablespoon olive oil DIRECTIONS Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Pulse the nuts in a mini food processor or mini chopper to the consistency of very small pebbles — but not as fine as sand. Transfer to a shallow bowl or a plate, then add the paprika, granulated garlic, thyme, salt, black pepper and cayenne pepper and stir to incorporate; this is your coating mixture. Press both sides of each fish fillet into the pecan mixture. Heat the oil in a large, ovenproof, nonstick skillet over medium heat. Once the oil shimmers, add the fish and cook until the underside is browned about 3 minutes. Turn them over and cook for about 3 minutes, until the …

Pros offer quick and easy veggie recipes

Everyone knows that veggies are important for a healthy diet, unfortunately, they are often neglected. Want to break out of your boring veggie rut without spending hours cooking? Our friends at Tufts University took care of the culinary inspiration in a recent newsletter. Roast them. “If you roast vegetables, it concentrates the sugars naturally in the vegetables, so they caramelize and sweeten,” says Cyndie Story, Ph.D., RDN, a certified chef and culinary consultant in Scottsville, Kentucky. “People typically like the crunch of roasted vegetables, too.” To roast vegetables, Story advises cutting them into uniform pieces (so they cook evenly), then toss them in olive oil and spices (such as oregano, cayenne pepper, parsley or garlic powder) for flavor, and spread them on a sheet pan. Bake in a 350–400 degree F oven until tender. She uses the lower end of the temperature range when it will take longer (like 30–35 minutes) for the vegetables to soften, such as sweet potato wedges. But for vegetables that cook quickly, such as kale chips that may take 5–8 minutes, she bakes them at 400 degrees F. Add citrus. “Citrus goes a long way in seasoning vegetables,” says TJ Delle Donne, a certified executive …

Chocolate Cherry Walnut Energy Balls

Americans spend billions on energy bars containing ingredients that may or may not be healthy. Here’s a simple recipe that is sweet but full of healthful protein and energy stoking ingredients. Try these in place of your typical dessert, tuck them in a lunchbox or pack them up for your next road trip. It’s a sweet treat with minimal guilt. Ingredients ½ cup natural peanut butter 1/3 cup honey 1 tsp vanilla 1 tsp cinnamon ¼ tsp salt ¾ cup oats ¼ cup flax seed meal ¼ cup chocolate chips ¼ cup walnuts chopped ¼ cup dried cherries chopped Directions Stir in medium bowl, whisk together peanut butter, honey, vanilla, cinnamon and salt. Stir in oats, flax, chocolate chips, walnuts and cherries. Using a small ice cream scoop or two spoons, roll into evenly sized balls and place on wax paper-lined baking sheet. Chill balls 30 minutes or longer to set before serving. Recipe Notes: Energy balls can be stored in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. If they don’t form perfectly right away, keep rolling them between your hands. The warmth of your hands will release the natural oils in the walnuts, which will …

Wheat Berry Salad With Dried Apricots and Spicy Citrus Dressing

Looking for a sturdy salad that holds up to any summer BBQ, picnic or potluck that comes along? We’ve adapted a recipe from Tufts University featuring whole grains and sun-kissed dried apricots in a lively dressing. This salad contains wheat berries, which are the whole, unprocessed kernels of wheat. This tasty nutritious ingredient can be found in natural food stores and many supermarkets. They are a bit time-consuming to cook, but we’ve included a time-saving method below.

Skip The Crowds – Authentic Steak Tacos at Home

Weary of the same tiresome summer grill standards? Us too! We’ve adapted a Prevention Magazine recipe that offers a fresh and flavorful respite from the same hotdog and burger fare. Don’t be put off by the pickled peach and onion mixture, as it’s super easy to throw together and will make your dinner guests think you slaved away in the kitchen all day! Swap out corn tortillas if you are going gluten-free.

Your Favorite Quinoa Salad Recipe to the Rescue!

Quinoa (pronounced KEEN-wah) is a healthy, high-protein, gluten-free alternative to grains. It is actually a seed and is considered a complete protein and a superfood. Quinoa has a light nutty flavor and is extremely versatile. I often use it in place of rice and toss it on salads and into soups. This quinoa salad is perfect as a side dish or you can throw some grilled fish or chicken on top for a main course. Give it a try!

Mediterranean Fish in Parchment Paper

Baking fish in parchment paper or tin foil is known in France as poisson en papillote (fish in a parcel). It is a very simple and healthy way to cook fish and is also very flavorful since the fish and vegetables cook together in their own seasoned juices. Cleanup is easy too! Any white fish will work. I used tilapia in this recipe. You can refer to the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch guide to help you make ocean-friendly seafood choices.