green beans vinaigrette with blue cheese

Green Beans Vinaigrette with Blue Cheese | anutritionisteats.com

Let’s ring in 2015 with something green, shall we?

It’s a total cliché, I know. But December wasn’t all cookies and egg nog either – things were actually quite healthy around here. Waldorf Salad, Veggies with a Charred Onion Dip, Blueberry Baked Oatmeal and not a single cookie or candy insight! (Well, I was eating them but not making them.)

Green Beans Vinaigrette with Blue Cheese | anutritionisteats.com

It’s no secret that I love green beans. (Always haricot verts actually, and there is a difference, albeit small.) Richie gets sick of them because week after week, I prepare them in the same exact way: lightly steamed, finished in a pan with a touch of (usually) butter, garlic salt (YES, the stuff that comes in a big green bottle) and red pepper flakes. On the nights that he makes them, they’re always much better! His secret?

Skipping the garlic salt and red pepper flakes. Butter, salt and pepper. That’s it.

Green Bean Vinaigrette with Blue Cheese | anutritionisteats.com

But this idea for green beans basically fell into my lap (it was on the back of the package) and since I’ve been loving the blue cheese + nut +vinaigrette combo lately I had to make it immediately. I need a life – I know!

It couldn’t be easier to make. Steam the green beans, whip up the vinaigrette (which honestly, is something I think you should always have around) and toss everything together. Dinner vegetables get an upgrade!

Green Beans Vinaigrette with Blue Cheese | anutritionisteats.com

 

Green Beans Vinaigrette with Blue Cheese
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 1 lb green beans
  • 1 small shallot, minced
  • 2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 2 Tbsp white wine vinegar (or white balsamic vinegar)
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • salt & pepper
  • ½ cup blue cheese crumbles
  • ¼ cup toasted and chopped nuts
Instructions
  1. Lightly steam green beans. (I microwave mine!)
  2. While the beans are cooking, whisk together shallot, mustard, vinegar, olive oil and salt & pepper.
  3. Toss green beans with about ¼ cup of dressing. (You'll have extra dressing.)
  4. Top with blue cheese and chopped nuts.
  5. Season with salt and pepper if necessary.

 

waldorf salad

Waldorf Salad | anutritionisteats.com

I love this time of year. The lights, the cheer – everyone seems so happy! And I can’t forget the constant stream of sweet treats. I don’t know about your office, but between the gift sweets and homemade sweets, it’s hard to stay away from the kitchen. And then there’s my own kitchen…which has seen its own constant stream of sweet treats lately. Dessert > Wine. (Only while pregnant.)

Waldorf Salad | anutritionisteats.com

But with all of the extra treats, it’s also a time of year when cutting back elsewhere needs to happen. Cookies > Other Carbs.

It’s not something that I actively keep track of, or even stress out about, but I make sure that salads are a staple for lunch and dinners are built around protein and vegetables. For me, it feels easy (and honestly, salads at lunch are the norm) but painless. I still get to enjoy the treats and while I’ll be gaining weight this year no matter what, at a minimum, I can feel good about fitting in some nutritious foods into each day.

Waldorf Salad | anutritionisteats.com

But it’s not the time to cut-back too much – meals still need to be filling! This salad, though pretty light in calories, still packs a protein and fiber punch, and it will keep you satisfied until your cookie snack! :)

Need more convincing? This salad is:

  • high in protein (32 grams!)
  • full of fresh produce (crunchy romaine and celery + sweet apples!)
  • healthy fats from almonds
  • light and tasty yogurt-based dressing

Enjoy every cookie. And every salad!

Waldorf Salad
 
Author:
Serves: 4 servings
Ingredients
  • 1-lb chicken breasts
  • juice from 1 lemon
  • ½ cup plain yogurt (not greek)
  • 2 Tbsp light mayonnaise
  • salt & pepper
  • 2-3 heads of romaine lettuce, chopped
  • 2 cups thinly sliced celery
  • 2 apples, chopped
  • ½ cup chopped almonds
Instructions
  1. Grill or broil chicken until cooked through.
  2. Let cool and thinly slice. Set aside.
  3. Whisk together lemon juice, yogurt and mayonnaise.
  4. Season with salt and pepper and refrigerate.
  5. Layer lettuce, celery, chicken, apples and almonds on each plate.
  6. Drizzle with dressing.
Nutrition Information
Calories: 308 Fat: 12 grams Carbohydrates: 19 grams Sugar: 12 grams Fiber: 5 grams Protein: 32 grams

How do you balance things this time of year?  

charred triple-onion dip with crudités

Charred Triple-Onion Dip with Crudités | anutritionisteats.com

You know what every holiday party needs? A beautiful platter of vegetables served alongside a delicious dip.

But not just any ranch dip served with baby carrots. Oh. No.

A dip full-of-flavor and vegetables that are anything but expected. Like where I’m going here?

Charred Triple-Onion Dip with Crudités | anutritionisteats.com

I took three types of onions: green, leeks and shallots. I charred them in the broiler. And then I turned them into a delicious dip.

Charred Triple-Onion Dip with Crudités | anutritionisteats.com

Instead of serving it with the usual carrots, celery and pepper strips, I served it with baby boiled potatoes, mini romaine leaves, roasted brussels sprouts and fresh carrots with tops. (Technically speaking, crudités are raw vegetables, but there’s no need to get technical today.)

It was a welcome change. Other unexpected crudité ideas: roasted cauliflower or winter squash slices, thinly sliced beets or fennel, lightly steamed broccolini or haricot verts and any baby lettuce that’s sturdy enough to stand up to a dip.

Charred Triple-Onion Dip with Crudités | anutritionisteats.com

If you are trying to eat more vegetables (who isn’t!?) try this dip. It’s reminiscent of the classic onion dip, but it’s made from real onions (not dehydrated ones) and the flavor will have you grabbing for vegetables like you never thought was possible!

Charred Triple-Onion Dip with Crudités | anutritionisteats.com

Charred Triple-Onion Dip with Crudités
 
Author:
Serves: 2.5 cups
Ingredients
  • 2 small leeks, cleaned and cut lengthwise
  • 2 shallots, peeled
  • 1 small bunch of green onions
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup light sour cream
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • juice from ½ lemon
  • few drops of worcestershire
  • salt & pepper
  • crudités for serving
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat broiler.
  2. Drizzle leeks, shallots and onions with olive oil.
  3. Broil for about 10 minutes, until slightly charred.
  4. Let cool a bit and chop all onions, removing roots of green onion.
  5. Stir together remaining ingredients and let chill for at least two hours before serving.

 

blueberry & banana baked oatmeal

Blueberry & Banana Baked Oatmeal | anutritionisteats.com

Two really exciting things have happened this (crazy) week. One: I launched a new website at work today! This project has been consuming (understatement?) me for the last few months and to have it completed…amazing! Work on Phase 2 starts soon. :) Two: I started a baby registry! This was one of those tasks that I kept putting off, but now that I’m finally in it, it’s so fun! And a little stressful. Which car-seat? Which bath tub? There are SO many choices.

When life gets busy, staying healthy (exercising, eating well, not stressing) is tough. And in my opinion, it’s when planning ahead – and prepping –  makes a huge difference.

Blueberry & Banana Baked Oatmeal | anutritionisteats.com

Baked oatmeal. It makes SO much sense.

You stir ingredients together. You bake them. Healthy breakfast is made for the week!

Blueberry & Banana Baked Oatmeal | anutritionisteats.com

I’ve mentioned it before, but I eat breakfast at work so I’m always looking for breakfasts that can be made ahead of time and easily transported to work. (Also, you should see the massive “lunch” bag I take with me every day.)

This version of baked oatmeal utilizes a number of good-for-you ingredients like antioxidant-rich blueberries, omega-3 -rich walnuts, full-of-fiber oats, all while still tasting delicious. You don’t have to tell anyone its really good for you.

Blueberry & Banana Baked Oatmeal | anutritionisteats.com

Blueberry & Banana Baked Oatmeal is:

  • 100% whole-grain
  • gluten-free
  • refined sugar-free
  • full of protein-rich ingredients like eggs, milk and walnuts

Blueberry & Banana Baked Oatmeal | anutritionisteats.com

To re-heat, simply microwave until warm and top with a splash of milk or half & half.

Enjoy!

4.0 from 1 reviews
Blueberry & Banana Baked Oatmeal
 
Author:
Recipe type: Breakfast
Serves: 6-8
Ingredients
  • 2 cup oats
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • butter for greasing pan
  • 2 bananas, sliced
  • 4 oz blueberries
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Stir together dry ingredients: oats, walnuts, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Set aside.
  3. Stir together wet ingredients: milk, eggs, vanilla and maple syrup.
  4. Lightly grease 8x8 baking pan with butter.
  5. Layer banana slices on the bottom of pan, top with half of blueberries.
  6. Sprinkle dry ingredients over fruit.
  7. Pour wet ingredients over and top with remaining blueberries.
  8. Bake for 40-45 minutes, until golden brown.
Nutrition Information
Calories: 268 Fat: 11 grams Carbohydrates: 34 grams Sugar: 19 grams Fiber: 4 grams Protein: 9 grams

This post is sponsored by Central West Produce. Opinions are my own.