Your favorite foods can be more nutritious with the right preparation and cooking methods. Sometimes changing a couple ingredients – such as the type and amount of oil you use – can make a big difference in the overall nutrition of the dish. Healthy recipes can be quick, simple and affordable to make.

Enchilada Bake

  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 onion (large, chopped)
  • 3 garlic (cloves, minced)
  • 2 cups black beans (cooked)
  • 1 can kernel corn (7 ounces, drained and rinsed)
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 2 cups prepared salsa (divided)
  • 8 corn totillas
  • 1/2 cup Monterey Jack cheese (shredded)

1. In a large skillet heat oil over medium-high heat; sauté onion and garlic 2-3 minutes.
2. Add beans, corn, cumin and ½ cup salsa. Cook 3-4 minutes, coarsely mashing beans with back of spoon.
3. Spoon 1/3 cup filling onto each tortilla; roll up.
4. Spoon ½ cup salsa into 11 x 7 x 2-inch baking dish. Arrange tortillas seam side down; top with remaining 1 cup sauce.
5. Cover and bake in 350 degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes.
6. Uncover; top with cheese. Bake 2 minutes longer or until cheese is melted.


Crunchy Vegetable Wraps

  • 4 tablespoons cream cheese, low fat (whipped)
  • 2 flour tortillas
  • 1/2 teaspoon ranch seasoning mix
  • 1/4 cup broccoli (washed and chopped)
  • 1/4 cup carrot (peeled and grated)
  • 1/4 cup zucchini (washed and cut into small strips)
  • 1/4 cup summer squash (yellow, washed and cut into small strips)
  • 1/2 tomato (diced)
  • 2 tablespoons green bell pepper (seeded and diced)
  • 2 tablespoons chives (chopped fine)
  1. In a small bowl, stir ranch seasoning into cream cheese, chill.
  2. Wash and chop vegetables.
  3. Steam broccoli in microwave for 1 minute with 1 tablespoon of water.
  4. Spread cream cheese onto flour tortilla, staying one inch from edge. Sprinkle vegetables over cream cheese. Roll tortilla tightly.
  5. Chill for 1-2 hours before serving (the wrap will hold its shape better). With a sharp knife slice into circles and serve.


Summer Vegetable Spaghetti

  • 2 cups onion (small, yellow, cut into eighths)
  • 2 cups tomatoes (chopped, peeled, fresh, ripe, about 1 pound)
  • 2 cups squash (thinly sliced yellow and green, about 1 pound)
  • 1 1/2 cup green beans (cut fresh, about 1/2 pound)
  • 2/3 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons parsley (fresh, minced)
  • 1 clove garlic (minced)
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 can tomato paste (6 oz)
  • 1 pound spaghetti (uncooked)
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese (grated)
  • black pepper (to taste)

1. Combine first 10 ingredients in large saucepan. Cook for 10 minutes, then stir in tomato paste. Cover and cook gently, 15 minutes, stirring occasionally until vegetables are tender.
2. Cook spaghetti in unsalted water according to package directions.
3. Spoon sauce over drained hot spaghetti and sprinkle Parmesan cheese over top.


Farmers Market Gazpacho

  • 2 cucumber (diced into 1/4 inch pieces)
  • 3 red bell pepper (seeded and diced into 1/4 inch pieces)
  • 3 green pepper (seeded and diced into 1/4 inch pieces)
  • 4 celery stalks (diced into 1/4 inch pieces)
  • 2 tomatoes (diced into 1/4 inch pieces)
  • 2 lemons
  • 2 cups tomato juice, low-sodium
  • 3 garlic clove (fresh minced)
  • 1 tablespoon cumin (ground)
  • 1 cup cilantro (fresh chopped)
  • salt and pepper (to taste, optional)

1. Combine all ingredients except salt, pepper and lemons in a bowl.
2. Remove 2 cups of the mixture and reserve.
3. Using a blender or food processor, puree the remaining mixture in the bowl.
4. Add 2 cups of reserved mixture to the pureed mixture.
5. Season with salt, pepper (optional) and the juice from the lemons.
6. Cover mixture and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving.
7. Serve cold, garnished with chopped cilantro.


Spring Pea Soup with Frizzled Ham

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 4 cups frozen peas (from 2, 10-oz. packages)
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1/4 cup half-and-half
  • 4 thin slices of reduced sodium Black Forest ham
  • 1 cup croutons
  • salt and pepper (optional, to taste)

1. Warm 1 Tbsp. oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook, stirring, until softened, about 3 minutes. Add peas, broth and 1 cup water and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium and cook until peas are very soft, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool slightly, about 5 minutes. Working in batches if necessary, puree soup in a blender and return to saucepan. Stir in half-and-half and season generously with salt and pepper. Keep warm over medium-low heat.
2. Warm remaining oil in a large nonstick skillet over high heat until hot. Sauté ham in batches until browned and curled around the edges, turning once, about 1 minute total. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate to drain.
3. Ladle soup into bowls. Tear ham into bite-size pieces and add some to each bowl. Scatter croutons over soup and serve immediately.