With more time spent at home in the past few years, there’s been a rise in baking, cooking (and eating) across the country. As 2022 begins, it’s time to start thinking about how we want change our eating habits for the better. Whether your goal is to eat less junk or processed food, lower your calorie intake, or learn how to cook with more vegetables, we’re here with a few simple tips and recipes to help you achieve your goal of eating healthier in 2022!
To begin, start with these general tips:
- Focus on whole fruits
- Vary your veggies - Cook a variety of colorful veggies. Make extra vegetables and save some for later.
- Vary your protein routine - Try adding a new protein, like shrimp, beans, chicken, or beef.
- Make half your grains whole grains - Add brown rice to your dishes.
- Move to low-fat or fat-free dairy milk or yogurt (or lactose-free dairy or fortified soy versions)
- Drink and eat less sodium, saturated fat, and added sugars - Cook at home more often to limit added sugars, saturated fat, and sodium. Read the ingredients lists and compare foods.
1. Avocado Toast with Egg
This dish is a healthy protein-packed breakfast that’s ready in under 10 minutes. It’s a well rounded meal made with some good carbs (whole wheat bread), great protein (eggs) and healthy fats (avocado!).
- ¼ avocado seeded and peeled
- 1 slice whole grain bread
- Sea salt to taste
- Freshly cracked black pepper to taste
- ½ tablespoon butter
- 1 egg
- Toast the bread in a toaster until golden and crispy, place the quarter avocado over the toast, slice it and mash it on top of the toast.
- For fried eggs: Heat butter in nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Break the egg onto the skillet and immediately reduce the heat to low. Cook uncovered until whites are completely set and yolks are thickened to your liking, about 5-7 minutes.
- Top toast with egg and season with salt, pepper, or seasoning of choice.
2. Golden Sun-Dried Tomato Red Lentil Pasta
Opt for a red lentil pasta when cooking pasta recipes. It has more protein than traditional pasta, and the taste is very similar. Couple with a marinara sauce full of veggies and you have yourself a healthy, yet indulgent, well rounded meal!
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 sweet onion, chopped
- 6 cloves garlic, minced or grated
- 1 tablespoon dried basil
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
- Salt and pepper
- 1 (28 ounce) can fire roasted tomatoes, I like san marzano
- 1/2 cup oil packed sun-dried tomatoes, oil drained + chopped
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 (8 ounce) box red lentil pasta or other short cut pasta
- 2 large handfuls baby spinach or kale
- grated parmesan, nutritional yeast, toasted pine nuts and or seeds, for topping
- Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. When the oil shimmers, add the onion and cook until soft and caramelized, about 5-10 minutes. Add the garlic, basil, oregano, turmeric, salt and pepper. Cook for 1 minute or until fragrant. Slowly add the tomatoes and the juices from the can, crushing the tomatoes with the back of a wooden spoon. Add the sun-dried tomatoes and vinegar. Simmer the sauce for 10-15 minutes or until reduced slightly. If desired, you can puree the sauce in a blender.
Stir in the spinach and cook five minutes longer.
Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and boil the pasta to al dente according to package directions. Drain.
Divide the pasta among pasta bowls and top with a generous amount of sauce. Top as desired with cheese, nuts and herbs.