Recipes

Idaho has Cheapest Groceries, Virginia Most Expensive: Can You Feed Your Family a Meal for $15?

grocery prices by stateEMBED THIS GRAPHIC

Do you think you could feed your family a healthy meal with only $15? It all depends on where you live, and what you’re willing to buy.

To get the ingredients to make a simple meal at home, you would spend an average of $15. That’s compared to an average of $6.50 for a single meal from a fast food restaurant like McDonald’s. When looking at base cost, fast food certainly seems like the cheaper option, and that’s appealing to a family crunched for cash.

However, the ingredients you could get for $15 would make a meal for four people — we priced chicken breasts, potatoes, apples, and milk — and the meal would be better for you than a cheeseburger and fries from the nearest drive-through.

5 Family Menus for $15 or Less

Unfortunately, not everyone has access to fresh ingredients, nor can everyone afford them. In some states, the cost of a meal’s worth of groceries is far more than $15. In Virginia, for example, you would need nearly $30 for the same amount of food you could get for less than $10 in Idaho. How is it possible that a family can have more or less affordable food depending on where they live?

Food inequality is a growing problem in the United States, as shown in a recent study released by the Harvard School of Public Health. Though diet quality has improved among people of higher socioeconomic status, the same cannot be said for those on the other side of the spectrum. (more…)

4 Foods Runners Must Eat for Training and Recovery

runner-food

Two friends train for a marathon. They follow the same training plan and meet for long runs on Saturday mornings, keeping each other accountable to their goals. When the big day arrives one crosses the finish line with a smile on her face and arms raised in triumph. The other hobbles across, much later, ready to collapse in pain.

Our late finisher didn’t get injured. She trained hard but she neglected to pay attention to her fuel and her rest. Rest and recovery are THE difference makers not just in race training but also in fat loss, fitness and overall health. Giving your muscles time to recover and rebuild is key to a healthy and strong body that will carry you wherever you want to go. Getting plenty of quality sleep and including scheduled rest days gives the body time to recharge, repair and be ready for the next workout.

Finding the right calorie balance to meet your training level is just as important as finding the right running shoe. A balanced plate MUST be part of the training and recovery plan. Lean protein, smart carbs, and healthy fats provide fuel to replenish energy stores and rebuild muscle. Eating too little can leave you drained, while eating too much of the wrong things (like over carb-loading or surviving off fast food) can also leave you feeling sluggish. (more…)

Alton Brown Gains 7 Pounds Eating at Wichita’s Best Restaurants

alton-brown-wichita-donut

Wichita is one of those places you wouldn’t expect to be a foodie town. Tucked in to one of the flattest spots on the prairie in the heart of beef country, with a blue collar populous that’s generally pretty laid back, Wichitans have an appetite for very good food.

I know this because I concluded a ten-year residency there last month. I also know this because Alton Brown just ate his way through the Air Capital and seemed pretty happy about it. He recently wrapped his wildly popular Good Eats on Food Network and took the show on the road. Alton Brown’s live Edible Inevitable made a stop in Wichita last night and there wasn’t a foodie in attendance who left disappointed. Fortunately, we don’t think Alton’s appetite left town disappointed either.

“I want to thank Wichita for the seven pounds I’ve gained in the last 24 hours,” he said, reported the Wichita Eagle. “I’ve eaten and eaten and eaten.”

Like I said, Wichita loves to eat, with 27 percent of the population being obese. The food’s just that delicious! We hope Alton’s seven-pound souvenir doesn’t hang around too long!

Alton Brown Shares His Diet Secret: Sardines

The celebrity chef stopped at nine Wichita restaurants, according to Denise Neil at the Eagle. And they were mostly a tour of my favorites, too. The only one he missed that I think was a huge disservice to his stomach was The Flying Stove, a nationally recognized food truck that we named a favorite vegetarian restaurant in 2013.

Alton’s favorite? The Nifty Nut House. It’s not even a restaurant; it is, however, the most epic candy and treat store in all the land ever of all time. “I’ve never seen anything like it,” the Eagle reports him saying. “That’s a national treasure.” (more…)

8 Easy Cauldron Dinners for Halloween Night

crockpot-dinners

OK, OK, we’re talking about a Crock Pot, but for Halloween a cauldron just sounds so much cooler! With the hustle and bustle that Halloween night can be, make one thing super easy on yourself — dinner. Load up your cauldron — or slow cooker — in the morning and by evening you’ve got a ready-to-eat meal that will fuel your trick-or-treaters for the candy trek ahead.

Chilis, soups, stews, maybe even some ghoul-ash, they all make hearty, satisfying dinners on one of falls most exciting nights.

roasted tomato soup

ROASTED TOMATO BASIL SOUP

This one is admittedly a little more laborious than the others, but if you make it in advance, you can let simmer on warm all day. Serve with a grilled cheese sandwich; trim the crusts by using a pumpkin or ghost cookie cutter! Or, try these mummy quesadillas! (more…)

17 Most LOL Food and Fitness Puns, Featuring Michelle Obama

Sure, they’re super cheesy and a little overplayed at times, but you know you can’t help but crack a smile and a you-got-me laugh when the perfect pun comes along. With as heavy a scene as we all try to paint when it comes to our food and fitness, it feels good to look at all of it from the lighter side. And this week, we have first lady Michelle Obama to thank for the cunning reminder that puns, are in fact, fun!

Enjoy our favorite actual laugh out loud puns!

1. FLOTUS throws it down.

She’s nacho average first lady! #turnipforwhat

2. Oh my Quad, Becky!

…It’s like one of those rap guys girlfriends.

oh my quad becky

FitBottomedGirls

3. What the Kale?!

So many kale puns, so little time.

kale yeah (more…)

9 New (Yet Very Old!) Gluten-Free Grains

amaranth

Whether you’re going gluten-free and need a change of pace from quinoa and potatoes, or you’re just looking to add more nutrient-dense grains to your dinner routine, you’ve got more options than you may have thought! Here are nine new-to-you (yet very old!) options you’ve probably never heard of or tried. They are certainly worth becoming more familiar!

1. Amaranth

Aztecs ate amaranth for thousands of years–and for good reason! One cup of cooked amaranth has 9 grams of protein and 29% of your daily iron.

How to Eat It: Boil one cup grains in 6 cups water for 40 minutes, then drain off excess water. Use it in tabouli salad instead of bulgur, or with bananas and cinnamon as an alternative to oatmeal.

2. Buckwheat

Believe it or not, there is no wheat found in buckwheat. It’s actually a fruit seed originally from China. Kasha is the roasted kernel form that we eat. One cooked cup has only 155 calories, 1 gram of fat, and 5 grams of fiber to keep you feeling full.

How to Eat It: Stir-fry 100% buckwheat (soba) noodles with shrimp and veggies, or cook buckwheat groats (kasha) like rice and add lemon, olive oil, and fresh herbs. (more…)

Easy 5-Ingredient Pumpkin Cream Cheese Dip with Homemade Graham Crackers

pumpkin cream cheese dip and-crackers
This time of year I find any excuse I can to invite people over. Saturday afternoon football games, Friday night TGIF-ing, or just because, Autumn feels like the most inviting season of all. Halloween night, especially. Our patio always turns in to the must-be spot for family and friends. Everyone pitches in goodies for the trick-or-treaters, and we provide the turkey & black bean chili.

While a healthy dinner that fuels our party and little costume wearers, I’m always trying to find some new and exciting to serve for dessert. This year, we’re going with a crazy-kind-of-simple Pumpkin Cream Cheese Dip. Part appetizer, part dessert, wholly scrumptious, there’s nothing not to love about these seasonal creation. (more…)

Win a Week of BistroMD Meals on Us! It’s Weight Loss That Actually Tastes Great!

bistromd-giveaway

It’s one of the best and most popular meal delivery programs around; so good that we want you to try it for free! BistroMD delivers to you ready-to-eat meals with lean proteins and satisfying sides, all portion-controlled, nutritionally balanced, and very delicious!

Win a 7-Day Meal Program from BistroMD

1. LIKE our Facebook page, and comment on THIS POST!

2. FOLLOW us on Twitter, and RETWEET THIS MESSAGE!

It’s that simple! Each action counts as an opportunity to win our drawing for the 7-Day Meal Program from BistroMD.*

What You Win

BistroMD will ship to you their 7-Day Meal Program, which includes 7 breakfasts, 7 lunches, and 6 dinners. All of this is customizable, and you’ll choose from the more than 150 delicious entrees they offer using the member portal at MyBistroMD.com. (more…)

Cherry Vanilla Chia Protein Balls are a Post-Workout Blast from the Past

cherry-vanilla-chia-protein-balls

You know that craving you get for a Cherry Vanilla Dr. Pepper? It’s a pretty killer flavor combo. While we couldn’t carbonate these protein balls, we were able to capture that taste we all love. Only we did it with real cherries and real vanilla and zero caramel coloring. We didn’t even use high fructose corn syrup or Red #40.

Nope, we’ve got six very natural, very wholesome ingredients literally rolled in to one ball of tasty, craveable goodness. Pop one, pop two, it’s a taste that will take you back to your childhood while satisfying your very grownup hunger before or after you hit the gym. (more…)

A Vegetarian Dinner Never Tasted So Good: Chickpea Fritters with Arugula Salad

chickpea-fritters-and-arugula

Garbanzo beans never tasted so good! I love hummus, or just the raw beans in salads, as much as the next person, but my favorite legume is back at it in these fritters. What I love about this meal is that it can take on many different personalities.

If you’re just testing out Meatless Monday, this is a great intro. If you’re looking for an at-home version of falafel or Mediterranean food, top the fritters with tahini, tomatoes, and cucumbers. Greek yogurt works as a great alternative to a cream sauce, except it’s lower in sugar and higher in protein! (more…)