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The Good Calorie http://thegoodcalorie.com Nutrition by Dietitians Tue, 17 Sep 2013 20:41:15 +0000 en hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.3.2 What is Nutritional Yeast + Recipe http://thegoodcalorie.com/what-is-nutritional-yeast-recipe/ http://thegoodcalorie.com/what-is-nutritional-yeast-recipe/#comments Tue, 17 Sep 2013 20:40:26 +0000 admin http://thegoodcalorie.com/?p=3157 Continue reading ]]> People are on different sides of the fence with Nutritional Yeast:

  1. I love it! I put it on everything.
  2. What is it?

It does not have the most appealing name and some people may confuse it with the type of yeast you use to make bread (baker’s yeast) or beer (brewer’s yeast).  Nutritional yeast is deactivated (no longer a living organism) and usually of the species S. cerevisiae. Generally well known in the vegan/vegetarian world, nutritional yeast is a substitution for cheese as it has a nice savory/nutty flavor and is often used on popcorn, kale chips, or in recipes (see below!).

It is a great source of protein and B-vitamins, particularly B-12 for those who choose to avoid animal products as this is where most people get their natural sources of the vitamin.  If it is new to you, experiment to see how you can add this healthful flavoring into your daily life.

See a sample nutrition label example below:

Nutritional Yeast

Serving = 1.5 Tablespoons

  • 70 Calories
  • Total Fat 1g
  • Saturated Fat 0g
  • Cholesterol 0g
  • Sodium 0g
  • Potassium 3g
  • Total Carbohydrate 6g
  • Dietary Fiber 4g
  • Sugars 0g
  • Protein 8g

Easy Pesto Casserole
*adapted from the Forks Over Knives cookbook by Del Sroufe

This is a great way to use your end of summer veggies up. The recipe incorporates classic summer veggies like basil, squash, and tomatoes and also features – you guessed it! – nutritional yeast. Enjoy!

  • 1 tsp olive or canola oil
  • 2 large yellow onions, peeled and sliced into thin rings
  • 2 large Yukon Gold potatoes, cut into ½ inch rounds
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 2 large yellow summer squash, cut into ½ inch rounds
  • 2 large tomatoes, cut into ¾ inch rounds
  • 1 batch of Basil Pesto *(see recipe below)

Basil Pesto

  • 2 cups packed basil (could also use arugula if desired)
  • ½ cup pine nuts, toasted
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 package organic silken tofu, drained
  • ¼ cup nutritional yeast


1. Heat oven to 350 degrees

2. Boil potato rounds in a medium saucepan of water for 8-10 minutes, until al dente. Drain and season with salt and pepper.

3. While potatoes are cooking, warm oil over medium heat in a large skillet and sauté onions for 10 minutes or until browned. Add water 1-2 Tbsp at a time if they are sticking to the pan excessively.

4. Combine all basil pesto ingredients in a food processor and puree until smooth and creamy.

5. In a glass 9×13 pan, place a layer of zucchini evenly on the bottom. Season with salt and pepper and spread a dollop of basil pesto on top. Add a layer of yellow squash, season with salt and pepper and spread a dollop of basil pesto on top. Add a layer of potato rounds and spread a dollop of basil pesto on top. Repeat until veggies are used up in layers. Top with tomato slices and then onions. Season once more with salt, pepper, or other fresh herbs from the garden such as basil or thyme.

6. Bake casserole for 30 minutes. Let set for 10 minutes before serving.

By Ginger Hultin, MS, RD, LDN 

photo courtesy of http://blog.fatfreevegan.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/nutritional-yeast1.jpg

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Ginger Pumpkin Breakfast Smoothie http://thegoodcalorie.com/ginger-pumpkin-breakfast-smoothie/ http://thegoodcalorie.com/ginger-pumpkin-breakfast-smoothie/#comments Tue, 17 Sep 2013 20:30:25 +0000 admin http://thegoodcalorie.com/?p=3152 Continue reading ]]> Though China now produces the most pumpkins and pumpkin seeds in the world, did you know that Illinois is the biggest producing state in this country?  There is some compelling research on the health benefits of pumpkin (especially the seeds!) as well including a healthy lipid profile with high oxidative capacity and some anti-cancer benefits from the lignins and flavones in these seeds.   Pumpkin seeds are nutrient powerhouses rich in zinc, vitamin E, manganese, phosphorus, magnesium and tryptophan.  To prepare seeds, separate them from the pumpkin innards and rinse well.  Spread in a single layer on a cookie sheet and roast for 20 minutes at ~175 degrees.  There is some research that suggests increased health benefits when seeds are not overcooked.

I like the seeds, but I also really like the flavor of the gourd itself.  Here is a new take on an old recipe of mine, perfect for a Fall breakfast: 



  • 1 cup ice cubes
  • 1 small-medium banana (ripe)
  • 8 ounces almond milk (unsweetened)
  • 1 tsp grated fresh ginger (dried ginger is fine, too if you don’t have fresh)
  • 1 tsp peanut or almond butter
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract (pure, organic if possible)
  • ½ cup pure pumpkin (can use organic canned or fresh pumpkin puree if possible)


  1. Combine all ingredients in a blender and puree until smooth.  Enjoy immediately.





By Ginger Hultin,  MS RD LDN

photo courtesy of www.hungrycouplenyc.com via www.healthyaperture.com/posts for syndication

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Stove Top Jambalaya http://thegoodcalorie.com/stove-top-jambalaya/ http://thegoodcalorie.com/stove-top-jambalaya/#comments Tue, 17 Sep 2013 20:22:06 +0000 admin http://thegoodcalorie.com/?p=3148 Continue reading ]]> Ingredients

  • 20 frozen pre-cooked shrimp
  • 1 large pre-cooked kielbasa
  • 1 package Knoll Mexican Rice
  • ½ jar mild picante salsa
  • ½ jar hot picante salsa (For less spice use 1 jar of mild or medium picante salsa in place of mild & hot)
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp Mrs. Dash Fiesta Lime Seasoning Blend
  • 1 tsp paprika


-        Place shrimp in a small mixing bowl or veggie steamer basket. Allow cold water to run over the shrimp for 5-10 minutes or until thawed, then remove tails.

-        While shrimp are thawing dice kielbasa into small chunks.

-        Using a medium heat setting, prepare the wok.

-        Spray with non-stick cooking spray, and then add shrimp and dry seasonings to the wok. Stir to distribute seasonings evenly.

-        Add diced kielbasa and salsa. Stir to combine.

For less spice, substitute 1 jar of mild or medium salsa.

-        Cover pan and simmer for 8-12 minutes or until rice is prepared.

-        Prepare rice per directions on package.

-        Once rice is done, including “set-time”, add to wok mixture and stir to combine.

By: Amanda E Kruse  RD, CD & Spencer D Hotz


Photo Credit: http://www.finecooking.com/recipes/stove-top-jambalaya.aspx

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Spinach & Cheese Braciole http://thegoodcalorie.com/spinach-cheese-braciole/ http://thegoodcalorie.com/spinach-cheese-braciole/#comments Tue, 17 Sep 2013 20:18:09 +0000 admin http://thegoodcalorie.com/?p=3144 Continue reading ]]> Ingredients

  • 6 pork cutlets
  • 2 cups cooked spinach (frozen, canned, or steamed fresh)
  • 1 cup 2% shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 Tbsp herbs de provence
  • 1 Tbsp black pepper
  • 1 Tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 pinch salt
  • Oil (your preference)


  1. Use the “flat side” of a meat tenderizer to shape the pork cutlets to an even and thin “sheet”.
  2. Add thin layers of spinach, mozzarella, and parmesan evenly over pork; fill to your preference. (Actual amounts may vary by taste, size of pork cutlets, etc.)
  3. Tightly roll each pork cutlet making sure the ingredients stay packed inside. (Important: To prevent Braciole from opening during cooking, roll tightly or secure with toothpick.)
  4. Rub olive oil on each rolled Braciole and then evenly distribute seasonings. Massage oil and seasonings into the Braciole so it sticks.
  5. In a shallow frying pan heat a little less than a ¼ inch of oil.
  6. Place rolled cutlets into hot oil and cover, cooking them for 6-8 minutes or until Braciole are golden. brown, cheese has melted, and an internal temperature of 145*F has been reached. To ensure even cooking and color, turn Braciole during cooking.

This dish is best accompanied with a small salad and some pasta or rice.

By: Amanda E Kruse  RD, CD & Spencer D Hotz

Photo Credit: http://www.yummly.com/recipes/pork-sauteed-spinach

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Easy Egg Bakes http://thegoodcalorie.com/easy-egg-bakes/ http://thegoodcalorie.com/easy-egg-bakes/#comments Tue, 17 Sep 2013 20:14:44 +0000 admin http://thegoodcalorie.com/?p=3141 Continue reading ]]> Ingredients

  • ½ tube crescent rolls or ¼ tube flaky biscuits
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup cheese
  • Optional: Peppers, onions, tomatoes, and/or mushrooms


-        Preheat oven to 350*F.

-        Spray ramekins with non-stick spray.

-        Spread one crescent roll dough triangle or ½ flaky biscuit over bottom and side of each ramekin; Bake until dough starts to brown.

-        On stovetop, scramble eggs; add 1/3 of the cheese.

If adding veggies, sauté and add into scrambled eggs with cheese.

-        Distribute eggs evenly between ramekins, sprinkle with remaining cheese.

-        Spread one crescent roll dough triangle or ½ flaky biscuit over top of each ramekin.

-        Bake until biscuits are golden brown and eggs bakes have reached an internal temperature of 155*F.

By: Amanda E Kruse  RD, CD



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Slow Cooker Spicy Chicken http://thegoodcalorie.com/slow-cooker-spicy-chicken/ http://thegoodcalorie.com/slow-cooker-spicy-chicken/#comments Tue, 17 Sep 2013 20:09:57 +0000 admin http://thegoodcalorie.com/?p=3135 Continue reading ]]> Ingredients Part A

  • 4 large frozen boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 jar hot salsa
  • 2-3 cloves garlic
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder
  • ½ packet taco seasoning

Ingredients Part B

  • 2 cups white or brown rice
  • 1 can corn kernels, no salt added
  • 1 can black beans, no salt added


  1. Set slow cooker on high. Add ingredients in part A. Cover and simmer for approximately 5 hours.
  2. When chicken has reached an internal temperature of 165*F and can break apart easily, use two forks to shred.
  3. Drain and rinse corn and black beans; add to slow cooker. Replace cover and simmer while preparing rice or similar grain. If extra liquid is present, simmer uncovered.
  4. Pour spicy chicken mixture over rice & enjoy!

By: Amanda E Kruse  RD, CD


Photo Credit: http://realmomkitchen.com/1344/easy-mango-chicken-over-coconut-rice/

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Food Sensitivities in Dogs . . . 5 Lessons I Learned http://thegoodcalorie.com/food-sensitivities-in-dogs-5-lessons-i-learned/ http://thegoodcalorie.com/food-sensitivities-in-dogs-5-lessons-i-learned/#comments Tue, 17 Sep 2013 19:57:46 +0000 admin http://thegoodcalorie.com/?p=3131 Continue reading ]]> As both a dietitian who specializes in food sensitivities and a dog lover, I am compelled to share this informative graphic from the ASPCA on the Most Dangerous Foods for Dogs.  Avocado, who knew?  But I also am compelled to share my personal journey with dogs and food sensitivities.

Never having been a table scrap feeder or allower of plate licking, I have prided myself on keeping my dog’s diets clean.  For years I fed that familiar brand of dog food sold at veterinary offices everywhere.  Thinking I was providing a quality diet I never really questioned the ingredient list.  Mistake Number 1.

Throughout my lifetime history of dog ownership, I have had a few pooches with some ailments.  In the 80s I had a Samoyed with skin rashes so bad that the vet took pictures of her sores for a textbook he was writing.  A few years back a Corgi mix had painful arthritis and itchy skin.  I never suspected that food could be causing these symptoms.  Mistake Number 2.

But my sweet Corgi mix, Missie, became a valuable teacher to me in more ways than you can imagine.  The year she wandered into my life is the same year I discovered my own food sensitivity to gluten and several other things. Missie was an affectionate kisser and face licker.  Worried about the severity of my reactions, I did not want her gluten-y slobber all over my face, so I changed her diet to a gluten free lamb and rice chow.  What happened next was nothing short of amazing.

The most common symptoms of gluten sensitivity are gastrointestinal in nature.  But personal and professional experience has taught me that skin manifestations and joint pain are common.  When I got off of gluten those symptoms, plus many more, disappeared within days.  Why I never connected the dots that Missie’s oily, itchy skin and arthritic legs could be caused by a reaction to gluten is beyond me.  Mistake Number 3.

Within a few weeks of going gluten free, my 12 year old dog was acting like a spring chicken.  She would pop up from her nap with gusto, showing no evidence of pain in her legs.  She stopped itching and her fur became soft instead of coarse and oily.

This serendipitous discovery set me on a quest to learn more about gluten and dogs.  I pored over sites like dogtorj and learned valuable information about dogs and how they should be fed.  Duh!  I knew dogs were carnivores by nature, so why was I feeding my dogs gluten grains all these years?  Mistake Number 4.

Being the good dietitian I am, I enthusiastically changed their diet to a meat based diet because it was considered the best from an evolutionary standpoint.  That experiment didn’t last long because it was expensive and they really didn’t tolerate it well.  Despite my best attempts, there were many piles of “evolutionary diet” all over my rugs.  Eeeew!!  Mistake Number 5.

After years of getting it wrong, I have settled on a lamb and rice diet for my dogs and so far so good.  Most recently I adopted a retired athlete, a racing greyhound.  Greys are notorious for sensitive tummies, but we don’t seem to have any issues in that department.  Not unless you count the fact that my long-legged girl helps herself to some people food from the counter, only to suffer a belly ache and loose stools afterwards. Will she ever learn?

Mary Beth George, MEd, RD/LD, LPC

Certified LEAP Therapist

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Hydration Challenges http://thegoodcalorie.com/hydration-challenges/ http://thegoodcalorie.com/hydration-challenges/#comments Tue, 17 Sep 2013 19:50:37 +0000 admin http://thegoodcalorie.com/?p=3128 Continue reading ]]> Our bodies are made up of 55 – 60% water….so why do we have to drink so much?  You may hear constant reminders to drink plenty of water and to keep your body hydrated.  And for a healthy individual, that is absolutely correct.  By the time you actually feel thirst, your body is already dehydrated.  However, it is difficult with busy schedules and many other daily concerns to remind ourselves to keep hydrated throughout the day, especially when we don’t actually have a feeling of thirst.  Here’s a closer look at the issue, and some easy ways you can meet those recommendations.

Fluid needs vary for individuals based on physical activity level, heat, and even age.  Older adults run a higher risk of becoming dehydrated more quickly due to higher incidence of chronic diseases, multiple medication use, and a lower thirst level.  Individuals living in warmer climates such as the southern part of the country may require more water due to the amount of heat in the climate influencing the amount those individuals sweat.  The 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans state that the Adequate Intake (AI) for total water requirements includes water from fluids and that which is contained in foods.1  However, when consuming other beverages such as fruit juice, there is the factor of extra calories being added into the diet that may not always be taken into account.

The Dietary Reference Intakes, which are comprised of reference values for estimates of nutrient intakes that are used to assess and plan diets of healthy people, provide an AI value for fluid needs based on observed approximations by healthy people.  The AI for total water (which includes all water contained in foods, drinking water and beverages) recommended by the Institute of Medicine is 3.7 Liters/day (about 15 cups) for males and 2.7 Liters/day (about 11 cups) for females age 19 – 70.2    Keep in mind that not all beverages are created equal – despite the differing calorie content, some actually promote dehydration such as caffeinated beverages or alcohol.  Fruit juices and fruit drinks can cause an upset stomach in addition to contributing calories.3

In a recent study analyzing data from the National Cancer Institute’s 2007 Food Attitudes and Behaviors Survey, health-related behaviors and attitudes and characteristics of people who have low water intake were examined.4  It was found that 7% of adults did not drink water, and only 22% drink 8 or more cups per day.  It was also determined that low water intake (less than 4 cups per day) was associated with age, region of residence and unhealthful behaviors/attitudes such as high intake of sugar sweetened beverages, low fruit and vegetable intake, and no moderate exercise.

Additionally, National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) data from 2005 – 2007 has shown that the average US adult consumes about 4 cups of plain water per day.4  Plain water intake among adolescents has also been studied, and a 2010 survey showed that 54% of high school students nationwide drink water less than 3 times per day.5  Similar behaviors were associated with low water intake in this study in addition to weight status.  So other than preventing dehydration, why is water so important?

Keeping proper fluid balance is critical to our body’s functioning.  We need to replace the water that we lose daily through sweating, urination and breathing.  If water loss becomes too great, it can affect mental functioning, vision, the body’s pH balance, temperature regulation, and electrolyte balance.  Water is used in processes throughout the body’s pathways and is a major component of our blood, which transports oxygen and nutrients throughout the body.6  That being said, there are simple ways you can ensure you are keeping well hydrated by using a few tips to help consume enough fluid throughout the day. 

  1.  My favorite trick is to make what I like to call “spa water.”  I recommend getting a nice clear pitcher or water dispenser, and fill it each day with not only water, but fruit such as berries, lemon/limes or even mint leaves.  One of my favorites is adding cucumbers and mint to a pitcher of water for a nice flavor that makes drinking water more desirable.
  2. Keep a water bottle at your desk at work.  You would be surprised how often you pick up that water bottle and take a sip.  It will soon become habit to naturally reach for that bottle.  You could even add some lemons or limes in for flavor and have your “spa water” right at work.
  3. Sip on a non-caffeinated hot tea.  I find myself sipping on tea often throughout the day just to keep a little warm in the air conditioned office.  If you’re not someone who enjoys sipping cold beverages, tea is a great alternative.
  4. Try adding a flavor such as Crystal Light to your water.  Some people just find that more flavor and a little more sweetness is more palatable and makes staying hydrated easier.  I like the Crystal Light options because they are few calories, and they have a nice selection of flavors.

You have your facts and you have some new tips to try.  Now it’s up to you to conquer the hydration challenge!

©Adrienne Hatch, MS, RD, LD/N


U.S. Department of Agriculture and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.  Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2010.  7th Edition, Washington DC:  U.S. Government Printing Office, December 2010.

Food and Nutrition Board, Institute of Medicine, National Academies.  Dietary reference intakes (DRIs): Recommended dietary allowances and adequate intakes, total water and macronutrients.  Available at:  http://iom.edu/Activities/Nutrition/SummaryDRIs/~/media/Files/Activity%20Files/Nutrition/DRIs/RDA%20and%20AIs_Vitamin%20and%20Elements.pdf.  Accessed September 10, 2013.

Cleveland Clinic.  Avoiding dehydration, proper hydration.  Available at:  http://my.clevelandclinic.org/disorders/dehydration/hic_avoiding_dehydration.aspx.  Accessed September 10, 2013.

Goodman AB, Blanck HM, Sherry B, Park S, Nebeling L, Yaroch AL.  Behaviors and attitudes associated with low drinking water intake among US adults, food attitudes and behaviors survey, 2007.  Preventing Chronic Disease 2013;10:120248.

Park S, Blanck HM, Sherry B, Brener N, O’Toole T.  Factors associated with low water intake among US high school students – national youth physical activity and nutrition study, 2010.  Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics 2012;112(9):1421-1427.

Duke University.  Importance of water in the diet.  Available at: http://www.chem.duke.edu/~jds/cruise_chem/water/watdiet.html.  Accessed September 10, 2013.

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Zucchini Muffins – A New Fall Favorite! http://thegoodcalorie.com/zucchini-muffins-a-new-fall-favorite/ http://thegoodcalorie.com/zucchini-muffins-a-new-fall-favorite/#comments Tue, 17 Sep 2013 19:42:28 +0000 admin http://thegoodcalorie.com/?p=3124 Continue reading ]]> These muffins scream Fall to me – nutty and sweet, with a hint of spice. I make a whole batch, and then wrap them individually in plastic wrap and store in the freezer in a zip top bag. They make a great breakfast when you’re running out the door or a portable snack when refrigeration is not an option. My fiancé spends hours hunting on the weekends in the Fall and tosses a few of these muffins in his pack to snack on while he’s roaming the woods!

Yield: 1 loaf, 3 mini loaves or 12 muffins


  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 cup grated zucchini*
  • 1 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries or cherries


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Grease and flour a 12 cup muffin pan or 1 loaf pan or 3 mini loaf pans
  3. In a large bowl, beat the egg by hand until well mixed. Mix in the oil and sugar, then the zucchini and vanilla. Add flours, cinnamon, allspice, baking soda, baking powder and salt, plus the pecans and dried cranberries. Mix just until the dry ingredients are incorporated into the wet ingredients. The batter will have lumps!
  4. Pour the batter into the prepared pans; wipe the edges to remove any excess batter and place in the oven. The loaf will need about 60 minutes, mini loaves about 30 minutes and the muffins about 20 minutes. Test for doneness by inserting a toothpick into the center – if it comes out clean, they’re ready to come out!

*Where I live, zucchini is wonderful in the summer, but I crave these muffins in the Fall because of their spiced flavor and sweet cranberries. To get the best of both worlds, I buy lots of zucchini from the farmer’s market during the summer and then shred and freeze it in one cup portions, perfect for baking these muffins. Remove the frozen, shredded zucchini from the bag and let it defrost in a colander. You can run them under cool water to speed up the process. Squeeze out any of the liquid that accumulates before adding the zucchini to the batter. 

By Erica Steinhart, RD

Photo courtesy of www.seaweedandsassafrass.com via www.healthyaperture.com/Posts for Syndication

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Healthy Breakfast Quiche http://thegoodcalorie.com/healthy-breakfast-quiche/ http://thegoodcalorie.com/healthy-breakfast-quiche/#comments Tue, 17 Sep 2013 19:34:04 +0000 admin http://thegoodcalorie.com/?p=3120 Continue reading ]]> Did you know that September is National Breakfast Month?  Eating breakfast daily can help you think more clearly and prevent weight gain — so eat up!

Category: Breakfast

Prep time: 5-10 minutes

Cook time: 50 minutes

Servings: 8


  • 5 large eggs
  • ½ box frozen spinach
  • ¼ cup 1% milk
  • ½ cup Daisy Brand Low Fat cottage cheese
  • 1 small chopped onion
  • ¼ cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 prepared pie crust


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Defrost spinach and squeeze out excess liquid. Combine eggs, spinach, milk, cottage cheese, onion, shredded cheese, and salt/pepper in mixing bowl and stir until well blended.  Pour into prepared pie crust and bake for 50 minutes or until golden brown.

By Meghan Windham, MPH, RD, LD

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