Tag Archives: party

Banh Mi Sliders are a Hit as Holiday Party Appetizers

I spent a week in Portland, Oregon with my husband this fall. We fell in love with the city instantly and felt right at home with its laid back vibe. We hiked Mt. Hood, explored Hawthorne, did wine tastings straight from the barrel, I took a pole dancing class, and coveted the Portland Farmer’s Market.

It was just the getaway we needed – a lot of time outdoors, a lot of good wine, and a lot of even better food. The first meal we had came within an hour of stepping off the plane and it was a Banh Mi sandwich. It’s a Vietnamese sandwich that has become quite the trend recently, and I feel like we got treated to one of the best around.

The small bakery cafe served up the best French bread I have ever tasted. Stuffed inside, like any traditional Banh Mi, was pork, vegetables, and a dressing. Before I’d finished the first bite I knew I’d found something spectacular.

So good, in fact, I knew I’d have to create my own, especially after I learned that a standard Banh Mi can hit 600 calories with the pork, bread, and dressing! With simple ingredients like pork and vegetables, why couldn’t I make one that was better?


I got my chance when a holiday party needed something more substantial than cookies and champagne. Inspired by a true Banh Mi, I turned this traditional recipe into sliders and shaved off a few hundred calories in the process. Each of these sliders has only 181 calories! (more…)

Kick-Off College Football With Healthier Man-Approved Tailgate Recipes

Finally! The weather is just starting to cool off, my favorite alma mater T-shirt is hanging front and center, and college football kicks off tomorrow. It’s almost more excitement than I can bear. I know I’m not alone, and I know I’m not the only one preparing a first game feast for my friends.

Whether you tailgate at home or from your couch, you can consume A LOT of calories in the four hours it takes to win a football game. I, for one, don’t want to be bloated when the big score comes in at the end, so I make a healthier spread. It’s far from rabbit food, but it’s also not the calorie bomb that most of my fellow fans are dishing up.

If I can promise you bold-flavored, sticky-fingered buffalo chicken, wicked dips, and killer desserts, can you promise to try at least one lighter tailgate party this season? I’m pretty sure everyone scores in that deal!

BBQ Pork Sliders

No one needs a half-pound pile of pulled pork, but a tiny slider or two can really fill you up. Our little pork sliders are smothered in a homemade barbecue sauce and a little coleslaw for a cool crunch.

Lighter Buffalo Chicken Dip

We guarantee everything about this recipe is the same as any you’ve tried before, except we’ve cut more than 200 calories out of it! A few simple swaps make this appetizer just as creamy, spicy, and in demand as its gut-busting counterpart. (more…)

9 New Summer Sandwich Recipes That are Fresh, Simple, and Healthy

My office mates and I recently held a lunch hour sandwich-making party. We had all of the fixings, but not a lot of the standards. Mini croissants, Orowheat sandwich rounds, and whole grain bread was piled high with black bean dip, roasted red pepper hummus, almond butter, avocados, sprouts, and Craisins. What we ended up with was a colorful collection of some of the tastiest, boldest, freshest sandwiches any of us have had in a while.
The Simple Mediterranean Sandwich and the Strawberry and PB Sandwich were two stand-out favorites, and all of the vegetarians loved the Bold Black Bean Sandwich. We’re sure you’ll find at least one favorite in our collection of nine new summer sandwich recipes because they’re all winners. They’re healthy, they’re simple, and many of the ingredients could be found on a well-stocked grocery store salad bar during your lunch hour. (more…)

The Year 2012 Brings Wild Yoga Trends to America

You might imagine how obscure yoga was in the advent of its day. With a few bearded men in caves secretly ‘oming’ themselves into higher states of consciousness, and barely a whisper of its benefits landing only on select ears, yoga used to be as rare as rain in the desert. Today it is highly unlikely that we will find a town without at least one yoga studio, and in some cities, there might even be a place to practice on every street

Enjoy yoga in a trance rave setting

corner. As one would expect with anything that explodes in popularity, people are putting their own spin on yoga, and looking for new ways to practice.

In the late 1960’s, several respected Indian gurus brought yoga to the west. America’s introduction to Kundalini, Iyengar and Ashtanga yoga created a small yet devout group of followers who practiced the traditional methods as taught from the masters. Sticking to the rigid principals and concepts, these classic styles of yoga attracted those with discipline and a strong desire to live a yogic lifestyle.

Today, yoga in America is a 6 billion dollar industry with over 16 million practitioners. Its popularity is mindboggling and the demographics of people who practice are extensive. From retired couch potatoes to retired athletes, yoga’s benefits are now seeping into the minds and bodies of all types.

Who knew that 5000 years after the birth of yoga we’d be throwing yoga parties, complete with champagne and glow sticks, teaching yoga to our four legged friends, and doing an inverted lotus pose whilst hanging from a silk hammock? The course that yoga has taken over the last forty years is truly fascinating.

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Celebrate Mardi Gras with a Lighter Muffaletta Wrap

February offers no down time between holidays. We swiftly eat our way through Super Bowl, Valentine’s and straight in to Mardi Gras (French for “Fat Tuesday”). It’s probably the most appropriately named holiday on the calendar, fully embracing its food focus. It’s a one-day feast and celebration before the 40-day fast that Catholics follow before Easter.

The hub of Mardi Gras celebrations in the US take place in New Orleans, which has an air of an on-going party anyway. But next week, on Tuesday, February 21, people will gather to throw one of the biggest parties of the year!

Traditional New Orleans foods, like jambalaya or a crawfish boil, will be the focal point of any proper Mardi Grad party. But few are as easy to make and easily adapted into a healthier version than the muffaletta sandwich, which is synonymous with Louisiana cuisine. (more…)

BBQ Pork Sliders for Super Bowl Help You Control Portions

A party like Super Bowl should have one big meal, it should have a lot of little favorites. You don’t want anyone to get too full too soon, that game lasts four hours in case you haven’t heard!

Slider sandwiches are the perfect way to give a little bit of a whole lot and keep your crowd satisfied for hours. We like them because they’re practically built-in portion control. Don’t grill half-pound burgers, make tiny ones on tiny buns. Sliders allow you to to enjoy something often though of as “off-limits” for healthy eaters, but in these smaller packages you can give in a little bit guilt-free.

Our BBQ Pork Sliders are made with lean pork tenderloin, your favorite barbecue sauce, and topped with a homemade coleslaw. They’re super simple to make. You could start and have your platter stacked with sandwiches in about an hour! Talk about the perfect last-minute crowd pleaser. If you’ve got time though, this can all be made ahead of time and assembled as your guests are arriving.

Ingredients

One pork tenderloin (about 1 ¼ lbs.)
½ cup plus 1 Tbsp. barbecue sauce
3 cups bagged Classic Cole Slaw (shredded cabbage and carrots)
3 Tbsp. reduced-fat mayonnaise
2 Tbsp. fat-free milk
1 ½ tsp. cider or white vinegar
½ cup plus 2 Tbsp. sliced scallions
12 dinner rolls or slider buns, split and warmed or toasted if desired (more…)

A Lighter Buffalo Chicken Dip Recipe

We’re just two days out from Super Bowl Sunday and the anticipation is building! There’s not much to do between now and kick-off except plan Super Bowl recipes and watch Super Bowl commercials. A staple of any proper football tailgate (whether at an actual tailgate or on your sofa) is buffalo chicken. The popular buffalo flavor has many iterations, and this morning, the web wants to know all about buffalo chicken dip.

Yesterday, Mike Valenti published his buffalo chicken dip recipe on CBS Detroit. It looks tasty, no one wonder people are scrambling to find it. However, it also doesn’t look very good for you at all. His original recipe includes regular cream cheese, ranch dressing, an entire rotisserie chicken, and regular cheddar cheese. We estimate a serving of his has at least 487 calories per 3.2-ounce serving. So, we did what we do best, we gave his dip a makeover!

We trimmed a lot of calories, fat, and saturated fat off of his recipe. You’ll get the exact same results, just as much flavor, and feel way better about eating it. With the adjustments we’ve made, the recipe now has about 206 calories per 3.2 oz. serving (this does not include the chips).

DIR’s Buffalo Chicken Dip

Ingredients

  • 2 8-oz. packages of reduced-fat cream cheese, softened
  • 16 oz. 0% fat plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 ranch dip seasoning packet
  • 3/4 cup Frank’s Red Hot Sauce
  • 24 oz. boneless, skinless chicken breast shredded and skin removed (bake, grill, or stew in the slow cooker with some of the hot sauce)
  • 1/2 cup shredded low-fat cheddar cheese (more…)

Throw a Dip Party for Super Bowl Sunday

Abra Pappa for NutritiousAmerica.com

I am not a sports fan… but I do love a great football movie (like Rudy, oh I cry and cry). I imagine that’s what the actual game feels like to sports fans? Regardless, I am a healthy food advocate and I know what goes on at Super Bowl parties. The food is typically a wasteland of processed, packaged food, filled with weird chemicals and fake flavors, and of course tons of unhealthy fat, sodium and sugar. I don’t want to spoil your Super Bowl fun, I want to increase it. After all, wouldn’t it be better to eat food that gives you tons of energy to emphatically scream at the TV screen all the way through the fourth quarter?

I love the idea of hosting a Super Bowl dip party, snack-y food that you can continue to munch on throughout the game. Just don’t tell your guests they are healthy dips, that’s your little secret. So put down that pre-made grocery store dip (food-like-product) and walk away from the shelf.

Here are some healthy dips and dipping agents worthy of an endzone dance. (more…)

Throw a Fun and Festive Holiday Office Party Your Employees Will Love

Tired of throwing a traditional holiday party for your employees? You know, those that involve appetizers, drinks, and standing around conversing? If you are the boss or in charge of your office’s party planning committee, now is the perfect time to flex your authority muscle and throw an “outside the box” holiday party this year.

Most work places are notorious for unhealthy eating and offer little in the way of physical activity. By being innovative and creative and offering healthier alternatives for employees, you can cut down on company costs for sick and absent days and improve the health of your employees. It’s just one day, one party, but by helping them to create good habits, you can make for more efficient employees.

Here are some interesting and exciting ways to ring in the holiday season, help your employees have a good time, and encourage healthy movement.

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Celebrate with Exercise by Throwing a Fitness Party!

A new trend in bachelorette parties may lead to changes in the traditional way we celebrate other special events. Instead of dragging around a half a dozen bride’s maids from bar to bar to consume copious amounts of calorie laden alcoholic beverages only to wake up and feel like hell warmed over for the big wedding day, health minded women are choosing to bond with a special, private yoga and fitness class designed specifically around the bride-to-be.

For example, at Flywheel Sports studio in the Flatiron district of New York brides and their posse can find themselves in a Pilates class infused with some dance and light weights, sweating to songs like “Chapel of Love” before they head out to get their hair and nails done for the ceremony. Yoga for Weddings, a Los Angeles based company who’s slogan “Bringing the Deep Breath to the Big Day” caters to new brides by offering private 90-minute classes with a focus on heart opening poses in preparation for the life changing commitment ahead.

So, if health conscious brides are swapping a night of drunken debauchery to celebrate with exercise, why can’t we do the same for other grand celebrations such as birthdays, Christmas holiday parties or New Year’s Eve events? We can! Here is how you can get started with this new trend in your neighborhood.

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