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Spring Into Wellness: Ham and Cheese Calzone

May 25, 2012

It has been a wonderful month of Spring Into Wellness recipes and advice. We hope you’ve enjoyed what our Flatout health experts have shared with you and look forward to hearing your thoughts on any of the dishes you create at home! Our final post comes from Nicole Silva, who is giving her best tips for keeping picky eaters happy and making a meal with a protein punch. Bon appetit!

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If there is one misconception people have about dietitians, it’s that we have perfect diets. I could take it a step further and say a lot of people think our kids are fabulously well-rounded eaters. Well I’m here to tell you that neither of those stereotypes is true – at least not for me!

My three-year-old daughter has been a great eater until recently. All of a sudden my good eater has become picky…and it is driving me insane! I find protein to be my biggest struggle. Chicken, turkey, steak and even fish used to be easy meals for her. Now it is only a certain kind of chicken, maybe a turkey meatball. Often, she leaves the dinner table only having eaten fruit or yogurt. Sound familiar?

After re-reading one of my favorite books from graduate school, “Child of Mine” by Ellyn Satter (check out her website – it’s fabulous!), I altered my methods. Satter’s idea is basic. It is the parents’ responsibility to provide a child with food. It is the child’s responsibility to eat it. So I stopped pestering her. I make one meal at dinner for everyone, and it includes a major form of protein, poultry, lean red meat or fish. I always serve it with fruit and/or vegetables, most of which she willingly eats. If she decides she doesn’t want to eat the protein, there is always yogurt or a peanut butter and jelly in the fridge.

Otherwise, when dinner is over, so is meal time. I find that if she is hungry (translation: no snacks before dinner), she eats. If not, she won’t starve. I stock the fridge with a lot of healthy choices, make sure she takes a multivitamin and know that I will look back and realize it wasn’t worth stressing over!

This calzone recipe is packed with protein, delicious and super easy to make. Enjoy!

Ham and Cheese Calzone

Ingredients:

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a cookie sheet with cooking spray. Lay each wrap on the cookie sheet. Divide and layer ham, Swiss cheese and roasted red peppers evenly between each wrap, leaving 1 inch around the edge. Sprinkle with Monterey Jack cheese. Roll tightly by folding each edge in, starting with a long side. Flip over and make two small slices with a knife to allow for venting.

Bake for 15-20 minutes until crisp and golden. Slice in half and serve!

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We’d love to hear your fresh perspective!

  • What are your strategies for helping picky eaters clean their plates?

Spring Into Wellness: Flatout Kibbeh + Amaranth Wrap

May 23, 2012

Happy Wednesday! Thanks to all who attended our #SpringIntoWellness party on Twitter last night. We had a great time chatting with you! If you missed it, you can still view all tweets by clicking here.

Today Kristine Van Workum is sharing her insight on the benefits of eating whole grains. We think you’ll love her unique and delicious recipe. Bon appetit!

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Most of us are already familiar with the health benefits of whole grains: rich in fiber, vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals and antioxidants, they’ve been linked to a decreased risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease and certain types of cancers. And the list goes on and on. The term “whole grain” means that all three parts of the grain kernel are intact, which includes the germ, bran and endosperm layers. Every month the Whole Grains Council features a different whole grain to spotlight. May brings attention to the whole grain amaranth. Amaranth is a gluten-free grain, and thus growing in popularity among those who have Celiac Disease or who avoid wheat/gluten-containing foods/grains. Never heard of it? Don’t worry – here’s your chance to learn and try something new!

Nutritionally, amaranth provides a good dietary source of protein, fiber, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, copper, selenium and Vitamin B6, and is an excellent source of manganese. It also contains more than three times the average amount of calcium, and it’s the only grain documented to contain Vitamin C. For more information on amaranth and its health benefits, visit the Whole Grains Council website.

Since this is my last recipe post for Flatout this month, I decided to create a more unique dish using amaranth, especially since I’ve never cooked with it myself. I always encourage my patients to try new foods so I wanted to follow my own advice. In the recipe below I have replaced what would normally call for bulghar (or cracked wheat) with amaranth. I hope you enjoy the recipe and experimenting with this more unusual whole grain!

Flatout Kibbeh & Amaranth Wrap

Ingredients for Kibbeh:

  • 4 Flatout Soft 100% Whole Wheat Wraps
  • 1 lb 93% (or leaner) ground beef (you can also substitute ground lamb, chicken or turkey)
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 Tbsp cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp all spice
  • 1 cup amaranth (rinsed in cold water)
  • 2-3 Tbsp pine nuts

Ingredients for Condiments:

  • 1 cucumber, seeded, peeled & chopped
  • 1 cup plain yogurt
  • 2-3 Tbsp fresh mint, chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Sliced tomatoes and red onions

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350ºF. Combine all kibbeh ingredients, then form into logs or patties (meatball size) – this is a fun hands-on job for kids (just be sure to wash hands well after handling raw meat)! Bake on a cookie sheet for ~30 minutes or until fully cooked. While kibbeh is baking, prepare condiments. Mix cucumber, yogurt, mint, salt and pepper for cucumber-yogurt sauce. Slice tomatoes and red onions. After kibbeh is done baking, assemble wraps using Flatout Flatbread, kibbeh, cucumber-yogurt sauce and tomatoes/onions as desired. Enjoy!

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We’d love to hear your fresh perspective!

  • Have you ever made a recipe with amaranth? What ingredients did you use?

Spring Into Wellness: Peanut Butter Protein Wrap

May 21, 2012

Happy Monday! We can’t believe the final week of Spring Into Wellness has already arrived, but we’re excited to bring you three more recipes from our health experts this week. Today’s post comes from Beth Aldrich, and she’ll be sharing tips on how to create a protein-packed snack from unexpected sources.

Additionally, we’d like to invite you to join us on Twitter this Tuesday, May 22 from 7:00-8:00 p.m. CST for a Spring Into Wellness party! Check out all the details here. We hope to see you there!

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What’s a mom (of teenagers) to do? They have a mind of their own and don’t always want to eat the meals and snacks I prepare. Well, thanks to Flatout Bread, I have some options. Sneaky as they may be, my tactics are simple. Give them what they want (within reason). My teenage sons are very clear about what they like and don’t like to eat, so I have loads of those things around the kitchen within reach.

From time to time, I’ll throw in a curve ball and introduce something new for them to try. Nine times out of ten, they’ll at least take a bite. I find that if you add some sweetness like whipped topping, peanut butter, syrup or a little sprinkle of sugar, you can get them to eat just about anything. So when I decided to elicit the help of my middle son, Ryan, for today’s vlog, I asked him what types of protein he’d add to a wrap. With my turkey breast and sliced chicken standing in the wings, the jar of peanut butter took center stage instead. With 7 grams of protein in a two tablespoon serving, I knew we’d be a tad bit short in the protein department. But never fear: Flatout Bread Multi-Grain with Flax to the rescue. With 9 grams of protein per wrap and 8 grams of fiber, this mom of teens can give a sign of relief.

Now the fun part, letting my teenager stage a video for the concoction. We searched around and decided that a sprinkle of cinnamon (to help regulate blood sugar – good for hyper kiddos) and a tablespoon of ground flax (loaded with omega-3s, fiber and protein) would partner nicely with a fiber and potassium-rich banana, all sitting atop a slather of organic peanut butter.

Wrap it up and, wha-lah, breakfast, lunch or an after school snack DONE for my muscle-seeking teenage son. Little ladies can appreciate the benefits of this wrap, too.

It doesn’t take much money, time or energy to come up with a healthy snack or meal option when Flatout Bread is on hand. Just consider your key ingredients: protein, fruits, vegetables and grains, and you’ll have what it takes to make any kid well-fed, satisfied – and asking for more.

Watch Ryan making his snack in the video below!

Flatout Peanut Butter Protein Wrap

Ingredients:

Directions:

Spread the peanut butter over the bottom third of the wrap. Sprinkle ground flax over peanut butter and add sliced bananas. Roll the wrap up tightly, taking care to keep ingredients packed in. Using a serrated knife, slice into pinwheels and sprinkle with cinnamon. Serve and enjoy!

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Big thanks to Beth and her sons for all of the amazing advice and recipes these past four weeks! To view Beth’s other three posts, click on the links below:

Spring Into Wellness: Green Pea Guacamole with Bread Crisps

May 18, 2012

TGIF! Today’s Spring Into Wellness recipe from registered dietitian Nicole Silva might just give your kids the motivation they need to eat more – gasp – veggies! Bon appetit!

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Vegetable. There is something about the word that makes a child cringe. From a visual perspective, some vegetables may not be among the most aesthetically pleasing foods. I know firsthand that the hardest part about getting a child to eat their veggies is to get them to try them first! After one bite and if well presented, chances are they are going to go in for another and another!

I find the best way to entice my daughter to try new veggies is to include her in the cooking process. Bring a chair or step stool up to the counter and let them in on the fun. Starting early is best but it’s never too late to begin cooking lessons in the home! Plus who doesn’t need a live-in sous chef? Your child’s age will determine his or her ability and level of skill, so be sure to delegate tasks appropriately. Try letting your child place chopped sweet potatoes in the pot. Later they can help with the smashing. Whether it is husking corn or washing carrots to dip in hummus, kids just like to feel included and accomplished. Encouragement goes a long way and they will be itching to try their latest creation!

Green Pea Guacamole with Bread Crisps

Ingredients:

  • 1 package of Flatout Hungry Girl Foldit Sliders in Classic White
  • 1 16 oz bag of frozen peas, thawed
  • 1 avocado, peeled and chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • ½ small onion chopped
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 1/3 cup coarsely chopped fresh oregano, divided
  • 1 tsp of salt (optional, to taste)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350° F. Coat a cookie sheet with cooking spray. Separate individual Flatout Sliders and cut in half. Place evenly on cooking sheet and toast for 10 minutes or until crisp (flipping after 5 minutes). While the sliders are toasting, puree together pees, avocado, garlic, onion, lemon juice and half the oregano. Stir in salt, if desired. Transfer to a serving bowl, sprinkle with oregano and serve with toasted sliders. Enjoy!

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We’d love to hear your fresh perspective!

  • What are some strategies you use to get your kids to eat their veggies?

Spring Into Wellness: Flatout Veggie Logs

May 16, 2012

Welcome to Wednesday! Today’s Spring Into Wellness recipe from Kristine Van Workum is not only delicious, but also an exercise in unlimited creativity for kids and adults alike!

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Spring is the prime time to focus on savoring the fresh and robust flavors of seasonal veggies. And what better way to enjoy eating your vegetables than if they are homegrown? If you live in an area where you can cultivate a garden, it’s a great way to get kids interested in taste-testing the foods they grow. To find some tips on gardening and for information on which springtime vegetables are in season now, check out the Produce for Better Health Foundation’s website.

One of my favorite Spring vegetables is asparagus. Since May is also Mediterranean Month, I’ve incorporated some Mediterranean ingredients into my recipe below. Kids (and adults) will enjoy eating their veggies if they are incorporated into meals and snacks in a creative, tasty, and finger-food way.

Since one of the key principles of the Mediterranean Diet is eating abundant amounts of vegetables, fruits and whole grains, I decided to focus on a sampling of veggies in my snack below. Research shows eating a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, beans and seeds is abundant in healthy micronutrients, antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and fiber. Studies suggest the components of the Mediterranean diet may help protect against cancer, heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease, dementia and even type-2 diabetes and obesity. For more specific research and menu planning ideas for Mediterranean-style meals, visit the Mediterranean Foods Alliance website for more information.

Flatout Veggie Logs

Ingredients:

  • Fresh arugula or spinach leaves (1-2 handfuls)
  • Olives (black or Kalamata), chopped
  • Roasted red pepper, sliced
  • Asparagus spears (~1” tops)
  • Bell pepper, sliced (orange or red variety)
  • Cucumber or zucchini, sliced
  • Sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
  • Flatout EdgeOn Multigrain Baked Flatbread Crisps
  • Hummus or babaganoush spread

Directions:

Place 1-2 handfuls of arugula and/or spinach on a plate. Chop a few olives, slice a roasted red pepper, wash and cut off tops of 4-5 asparagus spears, and slice/dice some orange bell pepper, cucumber and/or zucchini, and sun dried tomatoes. Assemble a variety of “veggie logs” by spreading a Flatout Crisp with either hummus or babaganoush, then add a variety of the chopped veggies. Place several different combinations of “veggie logs” onto the plate with arugula/spinach.

Make up fun and creative names for your creations (see a few examples below):

  • Mediterranean Ants on a Log (Flatout Crisps with hummus and chopped olives)
  • Mediterranean Forrest (Flatout Crisps with hummus and tips of asparagus spears standing up)
  • Caterpillars on a Log (Flatout Crisps with babaganoush and  sliced sun-dried tomatoes)

Enjoy!

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We’d love to hear your fresh perspective!

  • What types of “veggies on a log” would you create?

Spring Into Wellness: Black Beans + Rice Dip with Flatout EdgeOn Baked Flatbread Crisps

May 14, 2012

Happy Monday! If you celebrated Mother’s Day over the weekend, we hope you enjoyed your special day. We’ve got another great Spring Into Wellness recipe coming to you from Beth Aldrich that we’re sure your kids will love. A grain of truth from Beth: kids love to create in the kitchen!

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Let’s face it, kids love to play with their food when they eat. They swirl the spaghetti on their forks, they push the carrots around the plate with their fingers and they make bubbles with their milk. As parents, we want to teach our children that food is an important part of living healthy and that having a love for food is a good thing.

When kids get excited about certain foods and about helping in the kitchen, moms should take note and cultivate kitchen participation. If they have favorite foods, let them help you prepare those foods in various recipes and don’t worry too much about the mess or mistakes they might make. Instead, join in on the fun. Just remember to include a variety of proteins, good fats, fiber, grains, fruits and vegetables for balance. It doesn’t have to be perfect and don’t feel as though you need to “fix” the final preparation in front of your child – that will only teach them that what they prepared isn’t good enough. As a rule of thumb, let it be their creation and just step aside.

My youngest son has always loved rice, so when I was put to the task to talk about grains this week, I was thrilled to share this special “after school snack” recipe with you: black beans and rice with spices served with Flatout EdgeOn Baked Flatbread Crisps for dipping. I’m regularly trying to find ways to pair his favorite foods (example: white rice) with new tastes and flavors. By adding the protein and fiber of the beans with the quality of rice, which provides fast and instant energy and the essential source of vitamin B1 and its own fiber, you have a winning combination. The Flatout EdgeOn Baked Flatbread Crisps are the perfectly seasoned, crunchy delivery method for this creation, complete with good carbs, ample protein and bursts of flavor.

Catch a glimpse of Logan in action below. He’s creating a quick, easy and delicious after school snack with his Flatout EdgeOn Baked Flatbread Crisps that is guaranteed to satisfy any hungry child. Adults will love this recipe, too. Give it a try at your next party!

Black Beans & Rice Dip with Flatout EdgeOn Baked Flatbread Crisps

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup quick cook rice
  • 1 can or instant cook pouch of black beans
  • 1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon of cumin
  • 1-2 teaspoons of dried onions (to taste)
  • Flatout EdgeOn Baked Flatbread Crisps 
  • Sliced tomatoes (optional)
  • Sour cream (optional)
  • Cilantro (optional)

Directions:

Blend rice and beans in a bowl. Stir in seasonings and serve with Flatout EdgeOn Baked Flatbread Crisps. Adorn with sliced tomatoes, sour cream and cilantro, if desired. Enjoy!

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We’d love to hear your fresh perspective!

  • What are your favorite dips to serve with Flatout EdgeOn Baked Flatbread Crisps?

Spring Into Wellness: Black Bean and Brown Rice Burrito

May 11, 2012

Happy Friday! Welcome back to our Spring Into Wellness initiative. Today registered dietitian Nicole Silva is sharing advice on whole grains and why they are important for a healthy diet.

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I’m not a big fan of dabbling in diet trends. Low-fat, low-carb, sugar-free – the list goes on and on. If being a dietitian has taught me one thing, it is that fad diets do not work. However, I am a big, if not HUGE fan of one of the latest trends in eating: choosing clean and whole foods. In a nutshell, it means to incorporate foods with minimal amounts of processing into your diet. Think fruits, vegetables, whole grains, fish and lean protein.

Whole grains are really up and coming these days. They are any grain that contains the entire grain seed. Any processing of the grain excludes it from being considered and labeled as whole grain. Such whole grains include amaranth, barley, buckwheat, corn, millet, oats, quinoa, rice (brown, colored and wild), rye, sorghum, teff, triticale and wheat.

Why should you eat whole grains? The short answer is, why not!  Whole grain intake of just three servings a day is associated with a reduction in several chronic diseases. Generally, whole grains are high in protein, fiber, iron, magnesium and B vitamins, all of which play major roles in overall health and body function. A serving of whole grains may be any of following:

  • 1/2 cup cooked brown, wild or colored rice
  • 1/2 cup cooked hot cereal
  • 1/2 cup cooked 100% whole grain pasta
  • 1 slice 100% whole grain bread

Try replacing ingredients in your cabinet with whole grain options. You will find you not only feel more satisfied but also stay fuller, longer!

Black Bean and Brown Rice Burrito

Ingredients (serves 4):

  • 4 Flatout Multi-Grain with Flax Wraps
  • 2 cups brown rice, cooked
  • 1 can reduced sodium black beans, drained
  • 2 avocados, halved and sliced
  • 1 cup low fat shredded cheese (Mexican or Monterey Jack)
  • 2 cup fresh tomato salsa
  • 1 cup nonfat sour cream

Directions:

Lay out one Multi-Grain with Flax wrap on a tray or plate. Spread 1/2 cup of brown rice over the wrap. Add 1/3 cup of beans and 1/2 of an avocado. Sprinkle evenly with cheese. Fold the bottom of the wrap up over the filling, then fold the sides in and roll up from the bottom. Repeat with remaining ingredients. Serve with salsa and sour cream (or Greek yogurt) for dipping!

Serving Size: 1 burrito

This recipe is as delicious as it is healthy and satiating. Bon appetit!

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We’d love to hear your fresh perspective!

  • What are your favorite burrito toppings?
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