Blush Mac and Cheese with Tomatoes

Mac and Cheese is a sure dinnertime winner.  This version incorporates in-season tomatoes and iron-rich spinach.  Recipe serves 4.

What you’ll need:

  • 8-ounce uncooked small pasta (corkscrew shape works well)
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1/4 cup diced shallots (or yellow onion)
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 cups low-fat milk
  • 3/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 ounces spinach leaves
  • 1 cup shredded white cheddar cheese

What you’ll do:

  • Preheat your oven broiler to high.
  • Cook the pasta according to package directions, omitting the added salt and fat.
  • Drain pasta.
  • While the pasta is cooking, place the tomatoes on a baking sheet lined with foil.
  • Broil 8 minutes or until tomatoes begin to blacken.
  • While the tomatoes cook, heat a large saucepan over medium-high heat.
  • Ad the canola oil to the pan; swirl to coat.
  • Add the diced shallots, garlic and thyme.
  • Saute 2 minutes or until tender, stirring frequently.
  • Add the tomato paste.
  • Cook for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Add the flour and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly.
  • Stir in the milk, pepper and salt.
  • Bring to a boil.
  • Cook 4 minutes or until thick and bubbly.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Add in the spinach and stir until it begins to wilt.
  • Add the cheese and stir until smooth.
  • Stir in the cooked pasta and top with the roasted tomatoes.

Recipe and image form Cooking Light.

So what are you waiting for…Get dinner on the table!

Chili-Garlic Shrimp Noodle Bowl

Pasta night doesn’t always have to be Italian.  Recipe serves 4.

What you’ll need:

  • 8 ounces soba noodles
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice, plus lime wedges for serving
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 pound peeled and deveined medium shrimp (raw)
  • 1 tablespoon Asian chili-garlic sauce
  • 2 cups shredded purple cabbage
  • 2 cups halved snap peas
  • 4 carrots, thinly sliced

What you’ll do:

  • Cook the noodles according to package directions.
  • Toss the cooked noodles with lime juice, soy sauce, sesame oil, and a tablespoon of canola oil.
  • Heat the other tablespoon of canola oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Add the shrimp and cook, tossing frequently, until cooked, about 2-3 minutes.
  • Stir in the chili-garlic sauce.
  • Toss the noddles and shrimp with the veggies and plate evenly.
  • Serve with lime wedges and extra chili-garlic sauce, if desired.

Recipe and image from Real Simple.

So what are you waiting for…Get dinner on the table!

Grilled Lemon Chicken with Tomato Salad

This “superfast” meal will be on the table in under 20 minutes.  Serve with crusty bread to round out the meal.  Recipe serves 4.

What you’ll need

  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
  • 4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breasts
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 cups grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese

What you’ll do:

  • Combine the lemon rind, 2 tablespoons of juice and 1 tablespoon oil in a large zip-top plastic bag.
  • Add the chicken; turn to coat.
  • Let marinate in the bag for 8 minutes.
  • In a bowl, combine 2 tablespoons lemon juice, 2 tablespoons oil, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
  • Stir in the tomatoes and feta cheese.
  • Heat a grill pan over medium-high heat.
  • Coat the pan with cooking spray.
  • Sprinkle the chicken with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
  • Grill 5 minutes on each side or until cooked through.
  • Top the chicken with the tomato mixture before serving.

Recipe and image from Cooking Light.

So what are you waiting for…Get dinner on the table!

Smothered Pepper Steak

To capture all of its saucy flavor, plate this quick weeknight family favorite over hot cooked rice.  Recipe serves 4.

What you’ll need:

  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 4 (4-ounce) ground sirloin patties
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 (16-ounce) package frozen bell pepper stir-fry (such as Bird’s Eye)
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes with balsamic vinegar, basil and olive oil (such as Hunt’s), undrained
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce

What you’ll do:

  • Place flour in a shallow bowl.
  • Dredge the sirloin patties in flour and sprinkle each side with salt and pepper.
  • Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat and coat with cooking spray.
  • Cook the patties 3 minutes on each side; or until browned.
  • Add the stir-fry mixture, tomatoes and soy sauce to the meat in the pan.
  • Bring to a boil.
  • Reduce the heat and simmer 15 minutes.
  • Serve over rice.

Recipe and image from Oxmoor House.

So what are you waiting for…Get dinner on the table!

 

Skillet Barbecue Shrimp

Traditionally prepared in the oven, barbecue shrimp can be ready in far less time on the stove top (less than 10 minutes).  Pair with mixed salad greens lightly dressed with extra-virgin olive oil and fresh lemon juice.  Recipe serves 5.

What you’ll need:

  • 3/4 cup fat free Italian dressing
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire ground black pepper blend
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed in your hand
  • 2 pounds large shrimp with tails intact
  • 5 lemon wedges

What you’ll do:

  • In a skillet, combine the dressing, butter, black pepper blend and dried rosemary.
  • Bring to a boil.
  • Add the shrimp, cook 6 minutes or until the shrimp are cooked through.
  • Serve with lemon wedges.

Recipe and image from Oxmoor House.

So what are you waiting for…Get dinner on the table!

Three-Bean Tacos

Taco night gets a hefty dose of protein with this fun meatless recipe that features three different types of beans along with veggies, cheese and spices.  Recipe serves 6.

What you’ll need:

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup diced green bell pepper
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 cup canned chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 cup canned black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 cup canned pinto beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 12 taco shells
  • 3/4 cup shredded lettuce
  • 3/4 cup diced tomato
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheese
  • 1/2 cup salsa

What you’ll do:

  • Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until hot.
  • Add the onion, bell peppers, chili powder, oregano, cumin and garlic.
  • Saute 2 minutes.
  • Add the chickpeas and beans along with the tomato sauce.
  • Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes or until thick.
  • Prepare the taco shells according to package direction.
  • Spoon 1/4 cup bean mixture into each shell and top as desired.

Recipe and image from Cooking Light.

So what are you waiting for…Get dinner on the table!