Tag Archives: Soups

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…)

Work it Off: Burn Away a 446-Calorie Bowl of Soup

During winter I make a lot of soup. But it’s hard to find a recipe that has enough protein, fiber, fat and so forth to keep me satisfied for hours after mealtime. Recently I tried a new take on tomato soup—one with lots of chickpeas in it. It’s actually pretty similar to the Best Life Diet’s Chickpea and Tomato Soup, only I add a scoop of pesto and leave out the ginger, cilantro, curry, and lemon.

tomato pesto soup

This is no overindulgence—all of the ingredients are healthy and eaten together they really do provide a filling, tasty meal. But I was pretty surprised to see that the aforementioned recipe packs a 446-calorie punch. This isn’t a crazy amount of calories—as I mentioned, it feels filling enough that I tend to skip my afternoon snack when I eat it for lunch—but it still seems high for vegetable soup. Add on the fact that I sit at a desk for most of the day and you’ll see how a even a healthy soup could potentially lead to unwanted pounds.

So, how can I make sure that this delicious soup fuels more than just my fingers, typing away on the keyboard? Here are 3 ways to burn off the 446 calories in from this bowl of soup:

(more…)

Food Blogger Spotlight: Once a Month Meals

If you’ve ever felt overwhelmed by the thought of what to feed your brood or found yourself schlepping to the grocery store three times a week because you didn’t have the organizational skills to plan for more than one or two meals in advance, let Kelly Seaton and the staff of Once A Month Meals lend a hand.

The site offers a low cost membership program that provides: Access to serving size customizable recipe cards, freezer directions, organized grocery lists, step by step cooking day instructions, and printable labels. Everything you need to cook a month worth of meals in one day. A video on the site explains the membership process.

Not sure if you want to commit to a membership but still want to peruse a variety of healthy recipes for free? You can do that too. Kelly tells us about a few of her favorite recipes below, but I’m jotting this one down for breakfast next week: Whole Grain Banana Pecan Muffins. Nom-nom!

whole grain banana muffins

More from Kelly at Once a Month Meals –

Why did you start your food blog?  Once A Month Meals started back in 2009 as a way to share information on how freezer cooking can help people get back into the kitchen creating meals they’ll love for better health and to ease their budgets.

How would you describe your approach to eating/health? Once A Month Meals helps you to stay on track toward healthy eating. With seven different menu types, we focus on getting quality and diverse meals into your plan. We like to focus on seasonal ingredients when they are at their peak. Our Paleo and Diet menus help those on more strict eating paths to stay on track and not feel the need to indulge during a time-crunch.

Have you always had an interest in healthy food or did it come later in life? Our writers have always had an interest in food. Over the years, our attention has grown more focused on getting the right foods for our needs. And by healing with food instead of drugs.

(more…)

Spice Up Fall with a Chicken Taco Soup Recipe That’s Simple and Satisfying

It is the crunchy season, aka fall, and that means it’s soup and stew season, too. Woohoo!

I love fall. Like lovvvve fall.

Not such a fan of the soups though. I’m more of a stew and chili kind of girl, if I have to be. But a few years ago, I found a compromise in my Crock Pot and it has become my family’s single most favorite meal of fall and winter.

I used simple, healthy Mexican ingredients — a food genre I swear I could eat every single day — stirred them up, and started filling bowls with Taco Soup.

chicken tortilla soup

It’s one of those slow cooker meals that fills the house with intoxicating smells for hours until you’re so hungry you’ll risk third degree burns on your tongue just to get that first taste! (more…)

11 Must-Eat Must-Sip Pumpkin Recipes to Kickstart Your Fall

According to my coffee-themed wall calendar, fall is here! The oppressive heat of summer is hanging on in some parts of the nation but as each leaf turns color, lands in my  my backyard and taunts me to rake it, the closer we come to hoodies, hayrack rides and of course, cooking with pumpkin. I’m declaring pumpkin to be the official food ambassador of fall. It’s so diverse, you can eat it for breakfast, lunch, dinner and even dessert. In fact, if you wanted to, you could devote an entire day to pumpkin-eating but I wouldn’t, because that would be excessive.

Pumpkin Round-Up

In addition to being a fall recipe staple, the pumpkin is a super food. It’s low in calories, high in fiber, and packed with nutrients including potassium, pantothenic acid, magnesium, and vitamins C and E. It’s also packed with iron, zinc and beta carotene. Does that make pumpkin pie practically a vitamin? I think it does.

To kick off the season of our favorite gourd, we’ve rounded up 11 easy low-cal, healthy pumpkin recipes that you’ll want to start baking this weekend.

Pumpkin-Chili

Turn on the football game and sit down with this steamy bowl of Pumpkin Chili while you cheer on your favorite team.

(more…)

Our Favorite Easter Brunch Recipes for a Fresh and Inspired Holiday Meal

If the weather won’t do its part to prove it is spring, then the calendar will have to do. Easter is the official go for launch for this sunny season and everyone is ready to shake their cabin fever. As you join friends and family this weekend to celebrate the holiday, add a few healthy dishes to your brunch spread. You’ve no doubt got the eggs covered, so let us cover everything else!

Our Baker’s Dozen eCookbook has 13 fresh breakfast and brunch recipes that are healthier than your average pancake or strip of bacon. From sweet potato hashbrowns and a sunny side up breakfast sandwich to blood orange mimosas and apple doughnuts, your mornings will never taste better. It’s all the inspiration you need to celebrate Easter morning. Download yours for 99 cents!

Apple Cinnamon Streusel Doughnuts

This moist whole grain doughnut is baked with sauteed apples and cinnamon right on top. It’s like dessert for breakfast or breakfast for dessert. Either way, it’s a wonderful way to start your holiday morning.

Melon Ball Soup

It doesn’t get much simpler than a two-ingredient recipe. Chilled cantaloupe and watermelon are pureed and topped with your choice of garnishments like cilantro, mint, or feta cheese for a delightfully surprising brunch appetizer. (more…)

3 Health Food Fake Outs and 3 Healthy Alternatives

By Janis Jibrin, M.S., RD, TheBestLife.com Lead Nutritionist

When you see “whole grain,” “low fat,” and other health buzzwords on a food label, you might assume you’re picking up a more nutritious choice. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case. Some products don’t offer much of an advantage compared to the original or, even worse, aren’t inherently healthy at all. Let me share a few examples.


Health Food Fake Out: Neufchatel (cream cheese with 1/3 less fat)

It’s true that this product has about a third fewer calories and saturated fat grams than regular. But still, just 2 tablespoons (an ounce) contains 3 grams of saturated fat—that’s a sixth of your daily limit on an 1,800-calorie diet. And the 33 milligrams of calcium it provides aren’t worth it. (more…)

2 New Avocado Recipes: Cucumber Avocado Soup and Avocado Spread with Tomatoes

By Team Best Life – TheBestLife.com

Avocados take the starring role in many healthy recipes for a reason—they contain vitamins E and K, folate and fiber. Not to mention, they’re delicious! Don’t be scared off by all the fat; avocados are high in monounsaturated fat, the variety that can help lower cholesterol, especially LDL or “bad” cholesterol, which contributes to heart disease and other health problems. Still, to keep calories in check, you have to limit your intake of all fats, even the healthy kinds, so try using about a quarter of an avocado (about 60 calories of creamy deliciousness) in your favorite recipes.

How to Buy an Avocado

Avocados start green and turn black as they ripen. In the store, you should gently squeeze and examine avocados to find the right one for your needs: If you don’t plan on using it until later in the week, choose one that is green and firm. If you want to eat the avocado immediately, pick one that is dark in color and just slightly soft when you squeeze it.

How to Use an Avocado

To ripen a hard avocado, place it in a brown bag with a banana and it should be ripe in two days or so. If your avocado is ripe but you aren’t ready to use it, stick it in the refrigerator. You can also save parts of an avocado for later—just leave the pit in before wrapping it to help maintain freshness.

Avocado is delicious plain, and also works well in tons of recipes, including salads, wraps, sandwiches and spreads. Or, try one of these tasty Best Life recipes. (more…)

How to Cook with Kale

Kale was a leafy green that I veered far away from as a kid. But now that I’ve matured and wised up to know that kale is one of the healthiest greens around, I’ve opted to include it in my diet a bit more often. For those only beginning to venture into the world of dark leafy greens, kale is a great place to start and often referred to as the “queen of greens” for its superior health benefits. There is a bounty of delicious recipes to pick from online (we share five below), most grocery stores and markets have it in stock, and it’s so diverse that chances are you’re bound to find at least one way to enjoy this nutritious green. 

Health benefits: For starters, kale – also known as borecole – is an amazing source of iron. In fact, it contains more per serving than beef, which is extremely beneficial as iron promotes cell growth, proper liver function, the formation of hemoglobin and enzymes, and also transports oxygen throughout the body, according to MindBodyGreen.

Kale is also high in vitamin K and C, fiber, and cancer-fighting antioxidants like carotenoids and flavonoids. In addition, one cup contains 10 percent of the recommended daily amount of omega-3 fatty acids, which help protect against arthritis, depression and autoimmune disorders, as well as promote heart health. (more…)

Avoid the ‘Salty Six’ For a Healthy Heart

Do you know how much sodium is safe to consume on a daily basis? And perhaps more importantly, do you know how much sodium is actually in the foods you eat?  If you answered ‘no’ to either of these questions, the American Heart Association is here to help. The organization is seeking to provide some clarity on the topic of sodium with the introduction of its “Salty Six” – a list of six popular foods that are likely adding the highest levels of sodium to your diet.

It’s no secret that foods like canned soup and salty pizza made the list for their outrageous levels of sodium. But would you be surprised to know that bread and rolls ranked number one on the Salty Six and poultry and sandwiches followed not far behind?

(more…)