Sometimes you are just in the mood for ‘junk food’ for lunch. This junk food favorite gets pretty healthy when you bake your own chips and add healthy toppings. So go for it !!
344 calories per serving
12 6 inch corn tortillas, quartered
1 T oil
2 t ground cumin
1 ½ t chili powder
2 garlic cloves, minced
30 oz. pinto beans, undrained
1 c crumbled queso fresco or shredded low fat cheddar cheese
1 c chunky salsa
1 c diced avocado
6 T chopped cilantro
Salt to taste
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Spray a baking sheet with Pam. Sprinkle tortilla quarters with salt and ½ t chili powder and bake 8 minutes or until crisp. Work in batches. Heat oil and add cumin, 1 t chili powder and garlic and cook 30 seconds. Add pinto beans and bring to a boil stirring frequently. Lower heat and simmer 10 minutes then partially mash beans. Place 8 chips per plate and spoon bean mix over the chops. Top with cheese and microwave 30 seconds to melt cheese. Add salsa and avocado and garnish with cilantro.
Looking for something a little spicy and a little different? This will definitely perk up your lunch ! The poblano pepper makes a great grilled sandwich – coupled with the bean and salsa mash, you barely want anything else – even the cheese becomes secondary (and that is often IMPOSSIBLE).
305 calories per serving
4 poblano peppers
14 oz. can pinto beans
3 T salsa
1/8 t salt
½ c shredded low fat Cheddar cheese
2 T low fat plain yogurt
2 T chopped cilantro
8 slices 45 calorie per slice whole wheat bread
Place peppers in a glass bowl, cover with plastic wrap and microwave 4 minutes to soften. Let sit covered until cool. Mix beans with salsa and salt and mash most of them to form a paste. Mix cheese with yogurt and cilantro. Heat a Panini maker or indoor grill with a press. Spread the bean mix on 4 slices of bread and then top with the cheese mix. Split the peppers in half and remove the seeds then place peppers over the cheese and finish the sandwich. Spray both sides of the sandwiches with 5-6 squirts of ICBINB spray. Grill until golden brown.
Tender pork, spicy broth – the flavor is just fantastic ! If you don’t enjoy spice, just remove the jalapeno and you will still end up with a great tasting pork soup.
325 calories per serving
1 c onion, chopped
2/3 c green bell pepper, chopped
1 c chopped mushrooms
1 T minced garlic
1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced
1 lb. pork tenderloin in bite sized pieces
2 c chicken broth
2 c beef broth
1 c water
2 t chili powder
1 t ground cumin
1/2 t salt
1/4 t pepper
15 oz. kidney beans, rinsed and drained
14 oz. can diced tomatoes, undrained
2 T cilantro, chopped
1 c avocado, diced
Heat a non stick soup pot then spray with Pam. Add onion and cook 5-6 minutes adding a bit of hot water if necessary to keep onions moist. Add pepper, mushrooms, garlic and jalapenos and cook another 3 minutes then add pork and cook another 10 minutes. Add broth, water, spices, beans and tomatoes and bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes. Stir in cilantro just before serving. Spoon into bowls and top with avocado pieces.
Greek food is so flavorful and fresh tasting. And many of the dishes are surprisingly simple to make. Using store bought tzatziki here is a time saver, but if you want to make it from scratch, it’s pretty easy. It’s just a mixture of plain Greek yogurt, garlic and cucumber pieces. You can skip the tzatziki if you don’t like it, then just substitute some hummus to add in more moisture.
310 calories per serving
1 lb. chicken tenders
1 t Greek seasoning (mix of oregano, salt, onion powder, garlic powder and paprika)
1/2 c tzatkizi
4 8 inch pita breads
2 c romaine lettuce, chopped
2 plum tomatoes, sliced
1 cucumber, seeded and cut into strips
1/4 c crumbled feta cheese
Spray a large skillet with Pam. Heat on medium high and add chicken. Sprinkle with the seasoning and cook 6-8 minutes or until lightly browned and done throughout.
Slice pitas so you will be able to fill the pocket. Add chicken, lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, feta and tzatziki. I often slice the chicken up first so it gets more distributed throughout the sandwich.
Cobb salads are a perfect lunch. They are packed with protein and give you the energy to get through the afternoon without any ‘3 o’clock sleepies’.
200 calories per serving
12 c mixed salad greens
6 oz. thin deli sliced roasted turkey breast, cut into strips
1 chopped avocado
1 ½ c grape tomatoes, halved
8 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
3 hard boiled eggs cut into wedges
1 c low fat shredded cheddar cheese
8 oz. light balsamic vinaigrette dressing
Place greens on a platter and then lay other ingredients in strips across the top. Place dressing on top of individual portions.
This is a terrific, easy to make appetizer with the wonderful flavors of Greece just shining bright. The feta cheese, lemon, cucumbers and olives are a perfect topping to the toast triangles. Fancy tasting without a ton of work !
158 calories per serving
4 slices light whole wheat bread, crusts removed and cut diagonally into triangles
4 t olive oil
3 oz. low fat feta cheese
1/2 t lemon juice + a few squirts extra
1 small English cucumber, halved and then thinly sliced crosswise on the diagonal into 8 slices
4 pitted kalamata olives, sliced
Preheat oven or toaster oven to 450 degrees. Brush the bread pieces with the oil and bake until they are golden, about 5 minutes. Mash up the feta and mix with oil and ½ t lemon then add salt and pepper to taste. Spread the mix over the toast points and to with a slice of cucumber. Garnish with olives and then spritz with lemon juice and sprinkle with a little salt and pepper.
This is a sandwich that makes your mouth happy 🙂 The combination of the Cajun flavoring on the chicken along with the roasted red pepper and pepperoncini is just perfect. This one is a sure crowd pleaser and cut into strips, would make a great appetizer.
330 calories per serving
2 slices Italian bread
1 ½ t light mayonnaise
6 slices Cajun spiced deli chicken breast (if unavailable, sprinkle roasted deli chicken with some Cajun seasoning)
3 strips jarred roasted red peppers
1 small pepperoncini pepper sliced
1 no fat cheese slice (Kraft Singles are nice and creamy!)
2 t lite Italian dressing
Brush the outside of the sandwich with the dressing and cook in a skillet 3 minutes per side or until golden brown. Spread mayo on bread and then add all the ingredients.
This is one of the pasta salads you will make again and again. The added protein from the tuna makes this a great complete meal, or you can serve as a side to any salad for a great lunch or light dinner.
256 calories per serving
3/4 c orzo
1/2 t grated lemon zest
3 T lemon juice
1 T oil
Salt and pepper to taste
1 t minced garlic
½ t red pepper flakes
1 c drained and flaked tuna fish
1/2 c diced English cucumber
1/2 c chopped red bell pepper
1/3 c scallions, sliced into thin rings
1 T sliced basil
1/2 c crumbled goat cheese
Cook pasta according to package directions. When done, drain, rinse to stop the cooking process and place in a bowl. Mix lemon zest, oil, garlic, pepper flakes, salt, pepper and mix with the pasta. Add fish, cucumber, pepper and scallions and mix well. Place and sprinkle with cheese and basil.
A whole quarter of this casserole is yours for under 400 calories ! And it is so very flavorful. I used to do a version of this with a can of cream soup as well, but let me tell you, you don’t even miss it and without the extra calories, there’s a big old portion with my name on it 🙂
Trim the serving size by ½ and you have a great side dish or appetizer for just 195 calories.
390 calories per serving
2 10 oz. packages frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
2 c cooked brown or white rice
2/3 c skim milk
½ c Egg Beaters
1 c grated low fat cheddar cheese (or parmesan, or gruyere, or swiss – whatever low fat cheese you like)
Salt and pepper to taste
1 T oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
½ c fat free chicken broth
½ pound lean ham, chopped
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix spinach, rice, milk, eggs, ¾ c cheese, salt and pepper. Heat oil in a skillet and cook onion with salt and pepper until onion begins to brown, about 8-10 minutes. During the last 2 minutes, add the garlic, then add broth and cook 4-5 minutes or so then add ham and cook until warm. Combine the 2 mixes and place in a baking dish and top with the remaining cheese and bake uncovered ½ hour.
A Monte Cristo Sandwich is dipped in egg and fried – this version adds LOTS of gooey Gruyere cheese (the kind you find on top of French Onion Soup). If you prefer a milder cheese, switch to Swiss or cheddar.
350 calories per serving
1 T Dijon mustard
1 T fat free mayonnaise
8 slices Italian bread (1 oz. each) I recommend that you get a kitchen scale – it takes out the guess work !!
6 oz. deli ham, thinly sliced
1 c shredded Gruyere cheese (substitute Swiss or cheddar or jack if you don’t like Gruyere)
1/4 t black pepper
1/2 c Egg Beaters
1/4 c skim milk
Combine mustard and mayo. Spread each of 8 slices with an even amount of the mix. Then layer 4 slices each with ham and cheese. Sprinkle evenly with pepper and cover with other 4 pieces of bread. Combine eggs and milk. Dip both side of each sandwich in the mix. Heat a large skillet on medium high heat and spray with Pam. Cook sandwiches 3 minutes each side or until lightly brown.