Crock Pot Favorites
    Sausage and Bean Stew (Crock Pot)

    Sausage and Bean Stew (Crock Pot)

    What a great appetizer or lunch. The sausage, beans and garlic make a perfect stew. Served with cheese toast, this makes a great dish to serve to guests. Even with the bread, this dish comes in under 400 calories !! 6 servings 350 calories per serving 2 t oil 3 ...

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    Hamburger Soup (Crock Pot)

    Hamburger Soup (Crock Pot)

    This is so tasty – it’s something I have made many times and everyone who eats it is always delighted with the great heartiness and warmth. Beings this is a crock pot recipe, you can start this one before work, come home, drop in the noodles and in ...

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    Chinese Pulled Pork

    Chinese Pulled Pork (Crock Pot)

    This recipe was really interesting. Usually when you think of pulled pork, you expect a spicy Southwest flavor. But this one has an awesome Chinese sauce that is mellow and mild and is perfect with pulled pork. 8 servings 227 calories per serving 1/4 c soy sauce 1/4 c ...

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    Get the ’400 Calories or Less’ App and eBooks now !

    Get the '400 Calories or Less' App and eBooks now !

    I'm so very pleased to announce the 400 Calorie or Less App and eBooks ! The eBooks are now available for the Nook and the Kindle. There are 4 eBooks and they each host 40+ recipes to help you lose weight while eating the foods you love and ...

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    Easy Pork Carnitas

    Easy Pork Carnitas

    This is another great authentic recipe that cooks all day in the crock pot - it turns out a fantastically tender and juicy meat that is easily shredded and tastes great with a bit of lime and avocado. 4 servings 208 calories per serving 1 teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon garlic powder 1 teaspoon ground ...

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    Black Bean Chili (Crock Pot)

    Black Bean Chili (Crock Pot)

    This is one of the most awesome chili recipes I have ever made ! The depth of flavor was amazing. This is a truly authentic, rich, aromatic and spicy chili that is just plain PERFECT. Don’t forget the squirt of lime just before serving – it actually ...

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    Chicken Tortellini Stew (Crock Pot)

    Chicken Tortellini Stew (Crock Pot)

    This is a soupy stew or a thick soup :) Whatever it is, it's absolutely delicious. The sweet fennel adds just the little something different that makes this meal one of a kind. 6 servings 380 calories per serving 2 carrots, sliced 2 cloves garlic, minced 1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breast cut ...

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    Lasagna (Crock Pot)

    Lasagna (Crock Pot)

    Even traditional lasagna lovers like this one - and it is nice and easy to do. Start it at lunch time and have dinner ready 4 hours later. Take a look at my video below for instructions on how to layer it in your crock. 8 servings 275 calories per ...

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    April 22nd, 2013adminAppetizers, Sides, Vegetables

    These little crustless tarts make a great side dish to lunch or dinner. Very cheesy, very chic :)

    Spinach Tart

    Spinach Tart

    8 servings
    124 calories per serving (serving=2 tarts)

    16 oz. frozen spinach
    3 egg whites
    12 oz. 2 % cottage cheese
    1 c shredded part skim mozzarella
    1/2 c grated parmesan cheese
    1/4 t black pepper
    Pam

    Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Put spinach in a colander and rinse with hot water until thawed. Using your hand or the back of a spoon, press it down firmly to drain all the water out of it. Mix egg whites, cottage cheese and mozzarella cheese and then add spinach and mix well. Spoon mixture into 16 muffin / cupcake cups sprayed with Pam. Bake 35 minutes.

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    April 21st, 2013adminAppetizers, Cajun, Lunch, Sandwiches

    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.

    Grilled Cajun Chicken Sandwiches

    Grilled Cajun Chicken Sandwiches

    1 serving
    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.

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    April 16th, 2013adminchicken, Dinner, Italian, Kid Friendly

    Milanese style just means a breaded cutlet – - This is easy to throw together and the cutlets rival my old standby recipe – it’s the parmesan cheese in them that make these really special. Change up the salad by adding different veggies; tonight I had some left over zucchini and radishes that I threw in.

    Chicken Milanese with Salad

    Chicken Milanese with Salad

    4 servings
    197 calories per serving

    4 3 oz boneless chicken breasts
    1/4 t black pepper
    ¼ t salt
    1/4 c seasoned bread crumbs
    2 T grated parmesan cheese
    1 1/2 t oil
    3 c baby salad greens or field greens
    1 c grape tomatoes, halved
    1/4 c matchstick cut carrots (pre-packaged)
    3 T low fat balsamic dressing
    Pam

    Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Rinse chicken in water. Combine bread crumbs and parmesan in a bowl and press chicken cutlets in to coat well. Spray a skillet with Pam and heat over medium heat and add the chicken and cook about 4-5 minutes per side or until browned. Mix the salad greens, carrots, tomatoes and dressing and serve salad alongside chicken cutlet.

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    April 11th, 2013adminAsian, Dinner, Kid Friendly, pork

    Authentic and delicious. This Asian meal is memorable, brilliant and I want more NOW ! :)

    Pork Chop Suey

    Pork Chop Suey

    4 servings
    280 calories per serving

    1 c chicken broth
    3 T soy sauce
    2 T molasses
    1/4 t pepper
    5 ts cornstarch
    2 T oil, divided
    1 lb. pork tenderloin, trimmed, halved lengthwise and cut into strips
    1 medium onion, sliced thinly
    1 medium red or green bell pepper, sliced thinly
    3 c bean sprouts (fresh or canned from the asian section of your market)
    1 T minced fresh ginger

    Mix broth, soy, molasses and pepper. Take 2 T of the mix and stir in cornstarch and set aside. Heat 1 T oil in a non stick skillet and cook pork. Cook 5 minutes to brown it and then place in a bowl and set aside. Add 1 T oil to the skillet and cook onion 3 minutes then add the pepper and cook another 3 minutes. Add bean sprouts and ginger and cook another 3 minutes then add the broth and bring to a boil. Cook 4 minutes and then add cornstarch mix and pork and cook 2-3 minutes to thicken sauce and finish up the pork.

    For just 130 calories, add ½ c of chow mein noodles to the side.

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    April 8th, 2013adminDinner, Fish, Lunch, pasta

    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.

    Lemony Orzo and Tuna

    Lemony Orzo and Tuna

    6 servings
    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.

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    April 7th, 2013adminSalads, Sides, Vegetables

    This recipe gives you a really nice creamy dressing since you use mayo instead of eggs and oil. If you like it with a lot of bite, add extra anchovy.

    Creamy Caesar Salad

    Creamy Caesar Salad

    8 servings
    88 calories per serving

    ½ c grated parmesan cheese
    ½ c fat free mayo
    ¼ c lemon juice
    2 t anchovy paste
    2 t Worcestershire sauce
    ½ t pepper
    ¼ t dry mustard
    5 large cloves garlic, minced
    8 oz. fresh bread cut into cubes
    4 head romaine lettuce in bite size pieces

    Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Combine 1.2 c water with cheese, mayo, lemon juice, anchovy paste, Worcestershire, pepper, mustard and garlic. Whisk well and set aside. Place bread pieces on a baking sheet and bake 15 minutes to toast them. When done combine croutons and romaine and then dress and serve immediately.

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    April 4th, 2013adminDessert, fruit, Kid Friendly, Snacks

    These whip up in no time and are so versatile – you can use any flavor jello and any flavor fruit – - just make sure it’s frozen fruit. The frozen fruit is what makes the jello firm up in no time flat. I did this with raspberries and the dessert was just amazing tasting !

    Fruit Parfaits

    Fruit Parfaits

    4 servings
    85 calories per serving

    3/4 c boiling water
    1 c Cool Whip, thawed
    .3 oz. package flavored sugar free jello, raspberry or strawberry flavor
    2 c frozen raspberries or strawberries

    Add water to jello and stir 2 minutes to dissolve then stir in 2 c frozen fruit until jello starts to thicken. Add ½ c of the mix to the Cool Whip and whisk to blend then spoon into dessert cups and cover with the rest of the jello mix. Refrigerate 15 minutes.

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    April 1st, 2013adminDinner, Lunch

    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.

    Spinach, Ham and Rice Casserole

    Spinach, Ham and Rice Casserole

    4 servings
    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.

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    March 29th, 2013adminHoliday Meals, Uncategorized

    Having guests over for Easter? Attending a potluck or an event where you need to bring a dish? Then take a look at some of the perfect Easter dishes from 400 Calories or Less !

    I typically make holidays my ‘Cheat Day’ for the week, but I don’t go wild – I just don’t watch quite as close as I normally do. With my low cal dishes, you can have an appetizer, soup, your meal and dessert for less than some single slices of cake (think Cheesecake Factory). So put your apron and get makin’ some Easter goodies :)

    My Easter Meal Recommendation:

    Appetizers:
    Stuffed Mushrooms
    Zucchini Pizzas
    Spinach Tarts

    Soup:
    Lemon Soup

    Dinner:
    Baked Ham
    Steamed Potatoes with Garlic Sauce
    Lemony Green Beans

    Dessert:
    Chocolate Bark
    Banana Cake

    The mushrooms can be prepped ahead of time and cooked when the guest arrive. Same with the zucchini pizzas. The spinach tarts can be prepared AND cooked the day ahead – they reheat great in the microwave or oven.

    The soup can be prepared ahead and kept warm in a crock pot set to the ‘warm’ setting.

    The ham can go in the oven early, taken out while you cook the appetizers and placed back in to finish up the cooking. And the potatoes can be done ahead and you keep them warm in a crock or reheat at the last minute. Keep the steamer out and reuse it to do the beans. The beans should be done at the last minute – but it is just a steaming and quick mix with the other ingredients before you bring them to the table.

    The 2 desserts can be prepared the day before.

    Happy Easter and Happy Cooking !

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    March 27th, 2013adminbeef, Dinner, Fish, Kid Friendly

    Surf and term usually includes a large portion of meat and a lobster tail dripping in butter. If you’re looking for a healthier alternative, try a Skinny Surf and Turf with a lean piece of filet mignon and some Lemon Shrimp. Just as good, much lower fat, and a perfect celebration meal.

    Skinny Surf and Turf

    Skinny Surf and Turf

    2 servings
    346 calories per serving

    2 4 oz. filet mignons
    Garlic powder
    Salt and pepper to taste
    I Can’t Believe it’s Not Butter Spray

    Add 2 servings of LEMON SHRIMP for the perfect ‘surf’ !

    Preheat grill. Sprinkle meat with garlic, salt and pepper. Grill a couple of minutes each side or until desired temperature. When done, spritz with ICBINB Spray.

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