It’s officially the unofficial start to summer that we’ve all been craving! You know, that time of year when people start getting extra friendly with a neighbor or pal with a swimming pool. Memorial Day is here and, like most Americans, you probably have plans to spend the sunny day-off outside, on a deck, by the water, with good food, drink, and better friends.
Remember, these aren’t the cookouts of your youth; don’t allow your buddies to grill packaged weenies and frozen burger patties. This is a new era; your golden age of Memorial Day cookouts. We’ve compiled the very best of our cookout-inspired recipes — simple, delicious summer foods that may even be good for you (shhh!)
The flavor combination in this beer cocktail tastes exactly like summer is supposed to taste — light, sweet, refreshing, and maybe just a little bit boozy! We made our own fresh-squeezed lemonade, slushed it up in the blender, and topped it off with ice cold Sam Adams Summer Ale.
Add color, spice, and a little flare to your cookout spread with this Cajun-inspired recipe. We layered Andouille sausage with shrimp, peppers, and sausage for something like a shrimp boil on a stick! Serve with grilled corn and potatoes to really pull the theme together.
Are you tired of bland, store-bought salsa, but intimidated about making your own homemade chip-dip? This roasted tomatillo and pineapple salsa is sweet and refreshing, with a perfect amount of spicy bite. It’s full of complex flavor notes and a breeze to make. The tomatillo is tangy, the pineapple saccharine, and salsa staples like cilantro, lime juice, garlic, onion, and salt strike a harmonious balance. Throw this salsa down with some blue corn tortilla chips and watch your guests lick the bowl clean.
With great entertaining comes great responsibility, so make sure your Memorial Day guests have a tasty bev to wash down your delicious food. The only thing better than a cool summer cocktail is a frozen summer cocktail. The Talenti Sorbetto in this recipe is brilliant in color and light in calories. All you need is your favorite bottle of cheap cab sauv, a little lime juice, mixed berries, and a blender. With only 222 calories per 8 oz serving, it’s the perfect summer cocktail. (more…)
Condiments are one of the easiest ways to amp up the flavor in your foods. While the addition of some condiments provides flavor and little else, some can actually ramp up the health factor of your meal, while some of your favorites may be heaping hundreds of calories and unnecessary sugar, fat, and salt onto your already healthy meals, sabotaging your efforts to eat lighter and cleaner.
Anything in excess can be bad for you, so just because a food is low in calories doesn’t mean it’s free license to eat as much as you’d like. To keep our condiment analysis true and accurate, always stick to recommended portion sizes.
Salsa: 1 oz, 8 calories, .9g sugar
Veggies, herbs and spices, what could go wrong? If you’re whipping up your own, not much, but grabbing a jar of name brand salsa off the shelf can mean you’re pouring on preservatives, chemicals, loads of sodium, and even added sugar if you’re a fruit salsa fan. Big companies will pump their salsa full of preservatives to keep it shelf stable. Think about it — how else can “fresh” veggies sit on a shelf for weeks and still be edible?
If you go fresh and all natural, salsa can be an amazingly healthy and delicious option for just about anything. If buying from the store, you should be able to recognize every ingredient on the label. If making your own, dice up fresh roma tomatoes, onion, cilantro, garlic and a little jalapeno and pile that pico high to sneak in an extra serving of veggies. Try it on eggs, over chicken, or mixed with brown rice and kidney beans for a satisfying meatless Mexican filling. (more…)
Diets in Review has been covering healthy Cinco de Mayo celebrations for 7 years! This year, rather than create yet another new recipe for good-for-you-guacamole, we’ve put together our hit list for a healthy Cinco de Mayo celebration. Because we’re pretty sure we already nailed it.
Start your day with a Fajita Breakfast Burrito. This spin on the classic gets its flavor from sausage and green peppers with a little cumin, soy sauce, and vinegar for good measure. It tastes great, and the healthy helping of protein, fat, fiber, and carbs will keep you full for hours.
It may be obvious, but Guacamole is probably my favorite food, one of the three things I would want with me on a desert island. A few years ago I even had a “guac off” for my birthday party, asking guests to bring different versions of the classic green condiment/first-course which we of course then taste-tested and voted on. Versions included one with cranberries, one with chipotle chilis, and one with bacon. All were delicious, no surprise.
The good new is, guacamole is made of all sorts of good for you stuff: the avocados are full of heart healthy omega 3s and the onions, cilantro, jalepeno, and so forth provide a ton of nutrients. But moderation is not something I have an easy time practicing with guacamole, and I know I’m not alone: nutrition sites suggest a serving size of 1 oz., or about 2 Tablespoons. But as anyone who’s ever planted themselves next to the guac bowl at a party, it’s hard to stop there. I’ve easily eaten 2/3 of a cup on my own, which contains more like 244 calories. (Let’s not even get into the calories from the chips, which shoot this number way way up!)
Are avocados going the way of the dinosaurs? Probably not. But guacamole (which is the number one reason most of us eat avocados) may soon be nothing more than a memory, at least for fans of Chipotle Mexican Grill fans. According to recent speculation on CNN, global climate change and California’s current drought may make it impossible for the chain’s to serve up that delicious (and healthy!) green goo.
Here’s what’s happening: