Family Meal Time For The Dieter
Do you consider yourself a short order cook – preparing one meal for yourself and another for your kids? Just because you are trying to lose weight doesn’t mean you need to eat special foods.
There are plenty of healthy foods that you and your family can enjoy! And, did you know that families who eat together eat better?
We’ve put together some tips that will please the whole crowd.
Remember, mom (or dad) gets to decide what, when and where to eat while kids get to decide how much!
Get the whole family involved in planning – for example, let your kids choose a meal or two each week. If you need help modifying a recipe, post it in the Rate My Plate board – almost any recipe can be made healthier!
Picky eaters in the house? Serve one or two veggie dishes and let them decide what to try. Serve veggies in fun ways by cutting them in different shapes or serving them with dips.
Make shopping and cooking fun! Let your kids pick out there favorite color fruit or veggie at the store and let them help you prepare the meal. When they feel in control, they are more likely to try new foods.
Have theme nights such as Potato Bar, Tostada Bar or Salad Bar night.
Keep in mind that kids do like healthy foods! Sometimes we assume they don’t so we don’t offer healthy foods. The truth is, when exposed to different foods, kids will try them.
Not your Average Mac n’ Cheese!
Who doesn’t like Mac n’ Cheese?! This recipe uses whole wheat pasta, reduced-fat cheese and veggies to make it a healthy dish.
1/2 lb or 2 cups dry whole wheat macaroni shells or whole wheat penne pasta
2 tbsp light butter such as Land O’ Lakes Light Whipped Butter
2 cups non-fat milk
2 tbsp flour
2 tsp dry mustard
1 cup reduced-fat shredded cheese
2 cups finely chopped broccoli and carrots
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
Black Pepper and garlic powder to taste.
1. Preheat oven to 350. Cook pasta according to package directions, drain and set aside.
2. Heat milk in the microwave on high for 1-1 ½ minutes (or until warm but not boiling). Melt butter in a medium sized pan over low heat. Mix flour and dry mustard together and slowly add to melted butter. Whisk until there are no more lumps. Slowly add warm milk to pan, continuously whisking. Turn heat to medium and cook sauce for about 3 minutes, whisking often to thicken.
3. Add cheddar cheese and cook sauce for 1 more minute, stirring with a wooden spoon until cheese is melted. Combine cooked pasta, cheese sauce and chopped veggies in a large bowl and place in a baking dish sprayed with cooking spray. Spread evenly and sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Bake for about 20 minutes.
Nutrition Info: 211 calories, 13 g protein, 31 g carbohydrates, 5 g fat, 3 g saturated fat, 220 mg sodium, 7 g fiber
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