Banner picture for the Blog page of Speaking of Nutrition

Grocery Shopping on a Budget

January 21, 2019
There’s no denying that, grocery shopping is a chore, and Americans often rate it as one of their least favorite weekly activities. Now grocery shopping on a tight budget, that’s even a bigger headache and challenge for millions of Americans. But it doesn’t have to be this way. For less than $5 dollars a day, the average person can receive all the nutrients they need for overall health. Below is a list of nutritious, budget friendly foods that can make your next shopping trip a little bit easier.

1) Whole wheat bread. Most people are afraid of eating bread these days, but they don’t have to be. Bread is more than just carbohydrates; it also can be a significant source of protein. Two slices of whole wheat bread can contain up to 2 ounces of protein (14 grams). Combine this with peanut butter or lean protein (turkey) and you have yourself a protein powerhouse sandwich. And whole wheat bread cost around 11 cents per slice.

2) Peanut butter. I just love this stuff and eat it regularly. It’s a good source of protein and vitamin E and costs about 12 cents per serving. I also love the versatility of peanut butter. Spread it on toast, dip carrots or apples in it for a tasty snack, or… if you adore Reese’s peanut butter cups like me, you can spread a teaspoon of peanut butter on a small piece of dark chocolate and make your very own homemade, lower calorie version of a Reese’s. It’s delicious!

3) Canned tuna. A protein powerhouse with a high amount of omega 3 fatty acids. It’s easily transportable and generally has a long shelf life. Canned tuna costs around 45 cents per serving and can be used to make tuna salad, added to casseroles for protein, or simply eaten by itself if that’s your thing.

4) Eggs. Hands down, eggs are the cheapest, and easiest way to get all your essential amino acids for the day. And at 16 cents per egg, they really are incredible. You can scramble them for dinner, eat them hard-boiled for snacks, make egg salad, or you can get even fancier in the kitchen by making a quiche or a frittata.

5) Pasta. Many people fear pasta these days. Again, this is unnecessary. Pasta, like whole wheat bread, is more than just carbohydrates. It also can contain a significant amount of protein per serving. It costs about 12 cents per serving, and can be used to make delicious soups, casseroles, or enjoyed traditionally as pasta with red sauce.

6) Spaghetti sauce. Most people are unaware, that cooked tomatoes contain more lycopene (a rich and powerful antioxidant) than raw tomatoes. It cost about 20 cents per serving so stock up on spaghetti sauce or have those mason jars and fresh tomatoes ready to make your own homemade delicious spaghetti sauce.

7) Rice. Costs about 10 cents per serving and is extremely versatile. It also pairs well with dried beans.

8) Dried Beans. You can easily consume 3-4 ounces of protein and a large amount of dietary fiber from a simple ½-1 cup portion of dried beans. They cost about 12 cents per serving and can be combined with vegetables and other dishes for satisfying meals.

9) Milk/Yogurt. Traditional cows milk will cost about 25 cents per serving and contain a full serving of calcium along with a decent amount of protein. Yogurt will cost a bit more than milk, however you receive the benefit of probiotics that help promote gut health. To save additional money, consider buying unsweetened yogurt as it often tends to be cheaper.

10) Fruits and Vegetables. Never feel bad about buying frozen fruit and vegetables. They often are higher in nutrients compared to fresh and are readily available throughout the year. To save money, also buy what produce is on sale that week as it tends to cost significantly less than the produce that isn’t on sale. Canned fruit and vegetables are also a solid option. For canned fruit, avoid purchasing any items with the word “syrup” on the can, and for canned vegetables feel free to rinse the vegetables in water to remove any additional sodium from preservation. If purchased wisely, fruits and vegetables can cost about 25 to 75 cents per serving.


Now ,this list is missing healthy items such as olive oil, salad dressings, and condiments as these items are also necessary and important for health and enjoyment. And I know that bag of chips or that box of cookies generally still finds its way into the shopping cart. However, I feel this list of 10 foods can be a good foundation to build a healthy diet from, while still being budget friendly. The cost of consuming all these foods while factoring in a 2,000 calorie diet comes out to being around $4.00 per day. And remember, portion sizes not only benefit the waistline, but also benefit your pocket book.

Add CommentComments: 0

10 Great Ways To Use Artichokes

August 22, 2018
Artichokes…they might look mysterious and you might be unsure on how to properly prepare a fresh artichoke, but they deserve your full attention as they’re packed full of vitamins and nutrients such as dietary fiber, vitamin C, folate, and magnesium.

Below are 10 Great Ways To Use Artichokes!

1. Add artichoke hearts to vegetable sautés and stir-fries.

2. Stir cooked, chopped artichoke hearts into risotto or whole-grain salads.

3. Make an edible bowl by scooping out the middle and choke of a cooked artichoke. Fill the bowl with bean dip, guacamole, or tuna
salad and use the petals as dippers

4. Mash cooked artichoke hearts into a batch of
mashed potatoes.

5. Sauté together onions, garlic, kale, and artichoke hearts. Spread the veggies on a pizza crust, add a few dollops of ricotta cheese, and bake according to the pizza crust instructions.

6. Mix cooked, chopped artichoke hearts into your next omelet or quiche.

7. Skewer marinated artichoke hearts with shrimp or chicken and vegetables like onions,peppers, or zucchini, for
kebabs.

8. Use Greek yogurt in place of mayonnaise for a healthier version. Make variations by adding lemon zest, chopped olives, sun-dried tomatoes, or fresh herbs of your choice.

9. Steam artichokes in a slow cooker with garlic, olive oil, and white wine

10. Blend cooked artichoke hearts into hummus
or pesto

To prepare a whole, fresh artichoke for cooking, rinse and lightly scrub it under cold water. Cut about an inch off the top and remove the bottom of the stem. Snip the thorns off the petal tips with a pair of kitchen shears. Spread the petals slightly apart, rub all cut parts with a lemon, and you’re ready to cook!

Add CommentComments: 0

Mediterranean Frittata

March 24, 2018
Frittatas are super easy to assemble, and are a delicious and nutritious way to get your greens first thing in the morning. It's a versitale dish where the possibilities for flavor combinations are endless. Now you have another reason to enjoy Sunday mornings!

Mediterranean Frittata

Ingredients

• 2 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
• 1 Tablespoon salted butter or Ghee
• 10 large eggs
• 1 cup of purple onion, chopped
• 1 cup of baby portabella mushrooms, chopped
• 6 cups baby spinach
• ½ cup artichoke, chopped
• 1 cup of tomatoes, chopped
• ½ cup of crumbled feta cheese
• Fresh basil leaves for garnish


Instructions

1. Preheat the oven broiler to high heat

2. Crack the eggs into a bowl and whisk until all the yolks are
broken up. Set aside

3. Add olive oil and butter to a heated cast iron or stainless steel skillet. Sauté chopped onions and mushrooms until soft

4. Add spinach and artichoke and sauté until spinach has wilted. Should only take 1-2 minutes.

5. Spread the vegetable mixture evenly over the bottom of the skillet. Pour the egg mixture on top

6. Cook the frittata on the stove until the egg sides stiffen and the bottom is starting to brown.

7. Place the skillet in the oven for a few minutes until the frittata finishes cooking and starts to brown on top. You may need to add a cover or a sheet of foil on top to prevent it from browning too much

8. Remove from oven and top with chopped tomatoes, crumbled feta cheese, and fresh basil

9. Serve immediately


Nutrition Facts/Serving
Recipe makes approximately 7 servings

Total calories: 230 calories
Fat: 13 grams
Carbohydrates: 10 grams
Dietary Fiber: 4 grams
Protein: 13 grams
Add CommentComments: 0
Graphic link to the About Us page for Speaking of Nutrition
Graphic link to the Blog page for Speaking of Nutrition
Graphic link to the Contact Us page for Speaking of Nutrition