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Spinach Artichoke Dip Made with Nasoya Tofu

Spinach Artichoke Dip Made with Nasoya Tofu

Today’s post is brought to you by Nasoya but all opinions are 100% mine.

One of my absolute favorite things to do in the summer is an all day barbecue full of friends, family, and food. Lots and lots of food. However while the main focus is normally on barbecue and meats, my favorite part of the a summer gathering is the dips! Give me salsa, guacamole, hummus, or my all time favorite – spinach artichoke dip – and I am a happy camper.

However along with my love of dips also comes a love of creating healthier options for my favorite calorie packed recipes. One of those offenders – my beloved spinach artichoke dip that can pack a whopping 300 calories per serving. Luckily there are some tricks that not only can reduce the calories but also add protein to this amazing dip. My secret – Nasoya Firm Tofu! With just 70 calories and 8 grams of protein per serving, it’s a great way to add creaminess to any dip without the calories and fat. Consider reducing half (or all!) of the mayonnaise or sour cream with tofu to lighten up almost any dip recipe.

So now let’s talk about this dip! It’s start with the traditional base of spinach and artichokes. From there we add some red pepper for color and crunch, Parmesan cheese, garlic, and lemon. And then comes the secret ingredient – the Nasoya Firm Tofu. Finally to give it some extra creaminess, we add a touch of Greek yogurt and low fat sour cream. Delicious, nutritious, and with 75% less calories than the traditional version.

Tofu Spinach Artichoke Dip
Servings: 12
Serving Size: 1/4 cup
Nutritional Info: 71 calories, 3.3g of fat, 4.2g of carbohydrates, 2.2g of fiber, 6.2g of protein
Weight Watchers® PointsPlus®: 2 *

For the full recipe, head over to Nasoya!

Healhy Tofu Spinach Artichoke Dip

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Lemon and Smoked Paprika Chicken Thighs

Lemon and Smoked Paprika Chicken Thighs

This is an incredibly easy and affordable weeknight dinner solution. Boneless skinless chicken thighs marinated in a delicious combination of smoky paprika, lemon, thyme, and garlic that’s cooked on the grill or under the broiler in about 10 minutes. It couldn’t get much simpler and goes well with virtually any side dish you have in mind. It also makes great leftovers served over greens or in a tangy chicken salad with some yogurt or mayo and crunchy veggies. It’s also low carb, Paleo, gluten free, and clean eating friendly which makes it’s a winning dish for lots of different diets.

Lemon and Smoked Paprika Chicken Thighs
Servings: 4
Serving Size: 4 oz.
Nutritional Info: 224 calories, 9.1g of fat, 1.2g of carbohydrates, .5g of fiber, 33.9g of protein
Weight Watchers® PointsPlus®: 5 *

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* PointsPlus® calculated by Slender Kitchen; Not endorsed by Weight Watchers International, Inc.

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Friday Five: Meals for Under Five Points Plus

Friday Five:  Meals for Under Five Points Plus

Sometimes by the end of the day I have hardly any points left. Usually this is a result of either Happy Hour or a lunch away from my desk with friends or co-workers who aren’t watching what they eat. Sometimes I am good and just order something light, but sometimes I want to indulge like everyone else and luckily on Weight Watchers or any healthy eating plan, it’s just about balance and moderation so I don’t have to ever feel like I am missing out. Here are five meals that will leave you feeling satisfied but keep you within your daily points budget.

1. Chorizo Stuffed Poblano Peppers, 4 PointsPlus®
I almost always have a stockpile of these peppers in my freezer and also love them because you can throw them together in minutes. Take a poblano pepper, stuff it with soy chorizo and cauliflower, and bake them up with melted cheese. They satisfy any sort of spicy craving and taste like they have way more calories than they do. Have one with a simple salad and your meal is complete.

2. Chicken Tostadas, 5 PointsPlus®
This is one of those meals that you can make from leftovers in your fridge. Start with a baked tortilla and pile on whatever you have around – roasted chicken, beans, lettuce, tomatoes, onions, salsa, and avocado get you off to a great start. Not only that – you can eat two for under five points plus. It will feel like you are still indulging even though you are having a light meal.

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Cashew Milk Overnight Oats with Chia, Yogurt, and Berries

Cashew Milk Overnight Oats with Chia, Yogurt, and Berries

Originally I wasn’t planning on sharing this recipe since it barely qualifies as such, but after lots of questions on Instagram I decided to post it. Basically this quick and easy breakfast is just a combination of overnight oats, yogurt, chia seeds, and berries. It’s perfect for summer since it’s cold and you can customize it any way you like.

In terms of the oats, I have actually been making up a triple or quadruple portion at the beginning of the week and just scooping out the oats one serving at a time. Although any milk would work, I have been really loving cashew milk lately and with only 25 calories per cup for the unsweetened variety, it’s a great low calorie choice.

Cashew Milk Overnight Oats with Chia, Yogurt, and Berries
Servings: 1
Serving Size: 1 bowl
Nutritional Info: 253 calories, 4.1g of fat, 44.9g of carbohydrates, 8g of fiber, 9g of protein
Weight Watchers® PointsPlus®: 6 *

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* PointsPlus® calculated by Slender Kitchen; Not endorsed by Weight Watchers International, Inc.

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Foil Baked Salmon with Asparagus

Foil Baked Salmon with Asparagus

Sometimes simple meals really are the best and this foil baked salmon recipe really couldn’t get any easier. Everything is baked (or grilled) together in one neat little packet that you can throw together in about 10 minutes. It also is perfect for customizing for picky eaters since you can easily swap in different vegetables, herbs, and even fish to please every palate in your home. Consider adding some tomatoes, red onions, zucchini, olives, and oregano for a more Mediterranean spin or limes, poblano peppers, summer squash, and chili powder for a southwestern twist.

Foil Baked Salmon with Asparagus
Servings: 4
Serving Size: 6 oz. salmon
Nutritional Info: 293 calories, 10.2g of fat, 9.9g of carbohydrates, 4.5g of fiber, 37.2g of protein
Weight Watchers® PointsPlus®: 8 *

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* PointsPlus® calculated by Slender Kitchen; Not endorsed by Weight Watchers International, Inc.

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Healthy Meal Planning Made Easy & Week 29 Meal Plan

Healthy Meal Planning Made Easy & Week 29 Meal Plan

“If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail.”

Once a week, I am going to start sharing a tip, trick, or some interesting information about meal planning. I believe meal planning is critical to any long term and effective healthy living or weight loss goals. For me it was the single thing that finally made permanent weight loss achievable. The quote stood true, when I failed to plan, I failed, and I don’t want that to happen to others.

Additionally, I believe that meal planning is a skill that takes time to master and we can all use some help! When I first started meal planning it took up countless hours pouring over recipes, calculating nutritional info and/or points, and creating elaborate calendars. It was painful. Anything I can do to ease that pain for someone else is a win-win in my book.

Finally, I hope by sharing meal planning strategies, it will help you find a system that works for you. Whether it’s using our meal plans, scratching one into your weekly planner, or creating your own meal planning system – I hope this feature inspires you to start planning at least a few meals every week. It will save you time, money, and it truly will help you reach your weight loss and healthy living goals. So with that, on to this week’s tip!

Meal Planning Made Easy: Summer Sides Made Simple

As we talked about here before, sometimes side dishes can actually make meal planning even harder. Finding quick and easy side dishes, especially during hot summer months, is hard. To make things easier, consider adding some of these easy summer sides to your next meal.

  • Grilled Corn: Probably my all time favorite summer side dish is grilled corn. You can either wrap it in foil or place in directly on the grill depending on how charred you like things. Delicious and only about 80 calories or 2 PP per serving.
  • Grilled Vegetables: Similar to grilled corn, I love grilling vegetables in the summer months. For hearty vegetables, you can place them directly on the grill and for smaller veggies, consider using a grill basket or some foil. Mushrooms, zucchini, asparagus, eggplant, broccoli, and even cauliflower are all delicious on the grill with some olive oil, salt, and pepper.
  • Grilled Potatoes: In the mood for baked potatoes but don’t want to turn on the oven. First pierce the potatoes and then microwave until just tender. Then wrap them in foil and throw them on the grill. The skin will crisp up and they’ll be ready in a quarter of the time since you microwaved them first.
  • Bean Salads: Consider making bean based salad during hot summer months for a cool and fiber filled side dish. Black beans are a popular starting place but chickpeas, white beans, and pinto beans also make delicious salads with fresh greens and crunchy veggies.
  • Corn Salads: Just like bean salads, corn salads are also a perfect summer side dish. Pair the corn with tomatoes, basil, and some balsamic for a simple salad everyone will love or add cilantro, red onion, jalapenos, and your favorite green for a southwestern version.
  • Hearty Grain Salads: Like bean salads, grain salads are also a great way to add fiber and filling power to your side dish. Buy precooked grains from the salad bar to completely avoid the stove or use the simple microwaved versions instead. Brown rice, quinoa, farro, and couscous all make great options.
  • Rice noodles: Rice noodles don’t need any heat to cook. They are just soaked in water until tender making them the perfect no cook side. Add your favorite dressing and some chopped veggies and your side dish is ready.
  • Fresh fruit: Lastly fresh fruit makes a perfect summer side dish in my opinion. having barbecue? Serve watermelon on the side. Craving Asian? Serve some pineapple on the side. Making something on the grill? Consider fresh berries. If you want things a bit more savory, drizzle the fruit with olive oil and a pinch of salt.

Love the idea of meal planning but don’t want to do all the work? Since I know that many people simply don’t have the time to create their own healthy meal plans, we provide delicious and healthy meal plans at Slender Kitchen.

Here are some highlights from this week’s healthy meal plans:

  • Slow Cooker Korean Beef Tacos
  • Sausage, Broccoli Rabe, and Tomato Pasta
  • Grilled Citrus Chicken Drumsticks
  • Overnight Chocolate Banana Oats
  • Strawberry Ricotta Pancakes (low carb plan)
  • Pan Seared Pork Chops
  • Blackened Tilapia
  • Citrus Quinoa Salad (vegetarian plan)
  • Buffalo Chicken Burgers with Baked Ranch Fries
  • Grilled Pizzas
  • Cauliflower Crust Pizza (low carb plan)
  • & more

Each healthy weekly meal plan comes full of delicious recipes for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The meal plans come in regular, vegetarian, and low carb options. All feature complete nutritional information, Weight Watchers PointsPlus®, and categorized shopping lists! There are also two bonus fallback recipes weekly and the option for either a complete meal plan or a Dinner Only plan. All that for less the cost of one cup of coffee per month with the yearly plan.

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* PointsPlus® calculated by Slender Kitchen; Not endorsed by Weight Watchers International, Inc.

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