Category Archives: Lunch

No Guilt Cheese Quesadilla

When you spread a Laughing Cow cheese wedge on a tortilla and replace the need for lots of regular high fat cheese, you end up with a lunch or appetizer that is not only packed with flavor, but it’s virtually no guilt !

No Guilt Cheese Quesadilla
No Guilt Cheese Quesadilla

2 servings
137 calories per serving

1 wedge Laughing Cow Light Queso Fresco & Chipotle cheese
2 flour tortillas (80 calories each)
1/3 c low fat shredded cheddar cheese
Pam

Spread the Laughing Cow cheese on the tortilla. Top with cheddar and fold. Spray pan with Pam and heat well. Add tortillas. Spray the sides of the tortillas facing up. Cook 2 minutes then flip and cook the other side 2 minutes.

Ricotta Ball Soup

So different from the ordinary soup or the ordinary meatball. And so very tasty ! I don’t know which is better – the lemony broth or the big cheese balls !

Ricotta Ball Soup
Ricotta Ball Soup

6 servings
268 calories per serving

1 lb. ground chicken
2 c part skim ricotta
1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
1/4 c egg beaters
1 1/2 t kosher salt
8 cup no fat chicken broth
Zest of one lemon
6 oz. baby spinach

Mix chicken, ricotta, parmesan, Egg Beaters and salt. Refrigerate 15 minutes. In a soup pot combine broth and zest and bring to a boil. Make 18 meatballs with the chicken mix. They will barely hold together, but just keep as ‘ball-like’ as possible and drop into the broth. They will immediately sink. Simmer until they float and are completely done, about 15 minutes. Add spinach and let wilt for 2 minutes. Serve immediately.

Vegetable Eggrolls

I just made these again recently – what a great recipe ! I had the wrong calorie count on them and a reader helped me realize that – but I have updated taking into account the calorie count of the most popular brand of eggroll wrappers.

These eggrolls will soon be on your favorites list. Add 1/4 c duck sauce to the side for just an extra 60 calories. If you’re in the mood for some seafood try adding some cooked popcorn shrimp.

These make a great side dish, stand alone lunch, appetizer – – very, very versatile !

Vegetable Eggrolls
Vegetable Eggrolls

6 servings
162 calories per serving (1 serving = 2 rolls)

12 square eggroll wrappers (available in all grocery stores)
2 c shredded cabbage
1 c chopped onions
1/2 c shredded carrots
1/2 chopped bean sprouts (canned are fine)
1/2 c chopped celery
1/4 c low sodium soy sauce
2 T minced garlic
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 t onion powder
1/2 t garlic powder

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place all the ingredients other than the wrappers in a frying pan sprayed with Pam and cook on medium high heat, stirring often, for 15 minutes or until vegetables are softened a good amount.

Spray a cookie sheet with Pam. Work with just a couple of wrappers at a time. Place wrappers on a DRY surface and place 2 spoonfuls of filling on each. Dip your finger in water and moisten all 4 edges of the wrapper. Fold sides in toward the middle. Then roll bottom up and around rolling until you have a fully done roll.

Here’s the filling mix:

Eggroll Filling
Eggroll Filling

Here’s a great instructional site with pictures that shows you how to quickly roll an eggroll

And here’s a video I just made so you can see how it’s done – it’s so easy !!

Seal the outside edge with a wet finger and place roll on the baking sheet. Finish up the rest of the rolls. Once all the rolls are complete, spray the tops with Pam. Bake 20-25 minutes or until the tops are golden brown.

Hot Turkey and Gravy Sandwiches

A hot open faced sandwich brings me back – they seem to be a more old fashioned food – but I want to bring them back ! :) My Mom used to serve hot open faced roast beef sandwiches a lot, sometimes even as a quick dinner. This one brings the calories down a bit using turkey and fat free turkey gravy.

Hot Turkey and Gravy Sandwiches
Hot Turkey and Gravy Sandwiches

4 servings
220 calories per serving

2 T margarine
1 large onion, thinly sliced
¾ lb. cooked turkey breast, sliced thin
12 oz fat free turkey gravy
4 slices bread
Salt and pepper to taste

Melt margarine in a skillet and add onion. Cover and cool 6 minutes or until golden. Add turkey and gravy and cook until heated through. Place 1 slice of bread on each of 4 plates and top with the turkey mix. Season with salt and pepper.

Taylor Ham and Cheese

If you’re from the NY Metro area, then right away you know what I’m talking about ;) But if you’re not, you’re probably scratching your head. Taylor ham is a very regional item – I have never found it anywhere other than the Northeast and only part of the NE ! It is a compressed product of pork and spices / flavorings. It comes presliced or in a roll like a big roll of bologna. It has a flavor like NOTHING ELSE. It is served as a side to eggs (like bacon or sausage) or on a roll. A BIG breakfast sandwich here is Taylor Ham, Egg and Cheese on a hard roll. (Don’t even get me started about a HARD roll – in the NE it is a type of roll, it does NOT mean a stale roll – hehehehe).

I’ve skinnied up the extras so that this sandwich comes in at only 265 calories per serving. To my fellow NJ and NY peoples, enjoy :) (those of you out of state will have to wait to you visit the area – when you do, be sure to try this incredible product).

Taylor Ham and Cheese
Taylor Ham and Cheese

1 serving
265 calories per serving

2 slices light wheat bread (Stop and Shop has a great one that is only 35 calories per slice)
1 slice Kraft fat free singles cheese
2 thin slices Taylor Ham (pork roll)

Brown the pork roll in a hot skillet. Make a sandwich. Enjoy :)

(I cut into the pork roll a couple of times before frying – this helps it to not curl up during the cooking process).

Ham and Bean Sandwich

Heavy, filling and a great sandwich for a cold and blustery day. I think it works just as well as a breakfast sandwich as it does a lunch sandwich !

Ham and Bean Sandwich
Ham and Bean Sandwich

1 serving
250 calories per serving

¼ c Egg Beaters
2 slices whole wheat toast
4 T white beans, mashed with salt and pepper and 1 t water and heated in the microwave one minute
4 slices very thin, lean baked deli ham
1 slice Kraft Singles cheese (American or cheddar)
Salt and pepper to taste
Pam

Heat skillet and spray with Pam. Scramble egg beaters or make a little circle out of them so they stay on the bread nicely.

Here’s a quick video to show you how to prep the eggs:

When toast is done, spread one piece with beans. Then add ham, cheese, warm eggs and sprinkle with salt and pepper, and top with the final piece of bread.

Open Faced Ham and Brie

I was tempted to leave off the spinach on this one so I could get more brie flavor – I LOVE cheese ;) But I didn’t and I’m glad I kept it on – it was a nice contrast to the cheesy goodness and embellished it rather than taking away from it. This goes together in 5 minutes and is a nice change from a boring old ham and cheese sandwich.

Open Faced Ham and Brie
Open Faced Ham and Brie


1 serving
364 calories per serving

2 slices 45 calorie wheat bread
I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter spray
¼ t garlic powder
Pam
2 oz. brie
4 thin slices deli ham (Oscar Mayer makes a great pre-packaged deli ham)
½ c spinach leaves
1 T fat free balsamic vinaigrette dressing

Spray outside of each slices of bread with butter spray and sprinkle with garlic powder. Place buttered side down in a hot skillet sprayed with Pam. Top with cheese and cook a few moments to get the cheese all melty. Top with ham. Remove from heat and layer on the spinach leaves and sprinkle with dressing. Serve open faced.

Lentil Stew with Carmamelized Onions

I love lentils in soup. This recipe uses them in a super savory stew with enormous flavor. Try serving as a lunch or as a side to a fish or chicken dinner.

Lentil Stew with Carmamelized Onions
Lentil Stew with Carmamelized Onions

4 servings
229 calories per serving

1 T oil
1 onion, thinly sliced
2 15 oz. cans lentils, rinsed and drained
2 ¼ c chicken broth
Salt and pepper to taste
½ t garlic powder
½ t garlic flakes
¼ c plain low fat yogurt
1 T chopped parsley
½ T chopped chives
1 T chopped cilantro

Heat oil and add onion. Cook 15 minutes or until soft and golden. Add some very hot water a tablespoon at a time if the onions start to dry out. Add broth and lentils, season with garlic powder, garlic flakes, salt and pepper, and bring to a boil. Then reduce to a simmer and cook ten minutes. Half way through, smash some lentils against the side of the pan with a wooden spoon to make the broth thicker. Serve with fresh herbs and yogurt on top.

Turkey Sandwich with Guac

Guacamole is the perfect sandwich spread – anywhere you would add some avocado slices, think about using some guac instead. There is a prepared one that is just fantastic – Wholly Guacamole. It is super fresh tasting and available in the refrigerated section of your grocery store. The guac adds great flavor, moistness, and a healthful amount of MUFAs for your diet :)

Turkey Sandwich with Guac
Turkey Sandwich with Guac


1 serving
210 calories per serving

2 slices light wheat brad (40 calories each)
6 slices thin deli sliced turkey breast (Hillshire Farms thin sliced is great !)
2 slices tomato
2 T Wholly Guacamole

Spread guac on bread then add turkey and tomato. Enjoy !

Chicken Salad with Couscous

Chicken salad is great. Israeli couscous is great. Add the 2 together and you get a perfect portable lunch.

Chicken Salad with Couscous
Chicken Salad with Couscous

4 servings
345 calories per serving

1 c uncooked Israeli couscous
1/4 c chopped kalamata olives
2 T chopped parsley
2 T oil
1 T lemon juice
1 t grated lemon zest
Salt and pepper to taste
1 garlic clove, minced
14 oz. boneless skinless chicken, broiled and cut into slices (Perdue Shortcuts work great here!)

Cook couscous according to package directions the drain and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process. Mix olives, parsley, lemon, oil salt, pepper and olives. Add couscous and chicken and toss.

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