Super Simple Chicken Taco Soup

How many times in my life, after a very indulgent food weekend, have I said the words, “I’m going to have eat nothing but baked chicken and broccoli all next week!”?  I’m sure that those who know me roll their eyes as they laugh, because it’s no secret that I am not a fan of self-deprivation. This girl gotta eat!  In fact, I often find that when I try to deprive myself of food that makes me feel satisfied, I end up eating more in the long run.  Just about the only thing that helps me get myself back on track after a few days of eating “all the things” is doing some serious food-prep leg work.  

If you’ve been following around here for long, you know that I am a big fan of soups and stews.  I’m one of those people who can eat a bowl of soup or chili in the middle of an August afternoon.  Soups and stews are super easy to make and can easily fit into my food planning and pre-prepping rotations.  They are also great to help me feel full without going full-tilt down a crazy eating path. This Super Simple Chicken Taco Soup is one of my favorite make ahead meals.  It’s my go-to lunch this week and is saving me after a weekend of eating out.  ~ Tracy 

SuperSimpleChickenTacoSoup

Ingredients:

4 medium sized chicken breasts, cooked and shredded

1 can black beans, drained (15.5 oz.)

1 can pinto beans, drained (15.5 oz.)

1 can tomato sauce (8 oz.)

1 can diced tomatoes and green chiles, such as Ro-Tel

1 c. frozen corn

½ c. finely chopped yellow onion

½ c. finely chopped red bell pepper

1 c. water

2 T. taco seasoning

1 tsp. cumin

1 tsp. chili powder

Add all ingredients together in a large stock pot or soup pan.  Bring to a low boil and then reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer on low heat for approximately 30 minutes.

Serve topped with your favorite shredded cheese or sour cream.

This soup makes approximately 7 cups and is zero points/cup on the WW Freestyle/Blue plan.

Super Simple Chicken Taco Soup

Chicken, Main Dish, Mexican Food, soup, Uncategorized, Weight Watchers

Super Simple Chicken Taco Soup

Ingredients

  • 4 medium sized chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
  • 1 can black beans, drained (15.5 oz.)
  • 1 can pinto beans, drained (15.5 oz.)
  • 1 can tomato sauce (8 oz.)
  • 1 can diced tomatoes and green chilis, such as Ro-Tel
  • 1 c. frozen corn
  • ½ c. finely chopped yellow onion
  • ½ c. finely chopped red bell pepper
  • 1 c. water
  • 2 T. taco seasoning
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 1 tsp. chili powder

Instructions

  1. Add all ingredients together in a large stock pot or soup pan.
  2. Bring to a low boil and then reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer on low heat for approximately 30 minutes.
  3. Serve topped with your favorite shredded cheese or sour cream.

Notes

This soup makes approximately 7 cups and is zero points/cup on the WW Freestyle/Blue plan.

https://foursistersdish.com/2019/12/02/super-simple-chicken-taco-soup/

 

 

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Savory Butternut Squash Soup

I’ve tried very hard to expose my kids to a wide variety of foods – even the ones that I don’t personally like. As they’ve gotten older, I’ve tried branching out with my own diet as well. I will admit that a part of this “branch out” journey has been due to the fact that I attempt to follow a fairly WW (formerly Weight Watchers) friendly diet these days.
WW allows you to eat as much as you want (within reason, of course) of certain fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins. I’m always looking for ways to make those ‘leaner’ foods a larger part of my diet….because I am also all about a larger portion!  I’d tried some other recipes with winter squash but just wasn’t too thrilled with them. Winter squashes tend to have a slightly sweeter flavor, which isn’t usually what I’m looking for as a meal. So, when you can’t find what you want, you make it, right? Hence this Savory Butternut Squash Soup that is more on the spicy side and totally hits the spot.  ~Tracy
SquashSoup
Ingredients:
1 large butternut squash
½ T. chili powder
½ T. paprika
½ t. red pepper flakes
¼ tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. garlic salt
½ c. finely chopped yellow or white onion
½ c. finely chopped red bell pepper
2 ½ c. fat free chicken broth
¼ c. parmesan cheese
feta cheese for topping, if desired
Preheat oven to 400.
Split the butternut squash lengthwise and place open side down on a sheet pan that has been lined with parchment or sprayed.
Roast the squash for 45 – 60 minutes until fork tender. Baking time will vary by oven and depends upon the size of the squash. Allow your squash to cool to room temperature.
Remove the seeds and stringy area and discard. Scoop out the squash and puree until smooth. If you have an immersion blender they work great for this step.  I use this one.
In a large sauce pan or soup pot, mix the pureed squash with all other ingredients except the feta cheese.
Saute on low for 30 min. Be careful to allow the soup mixture to boil as this could lead to scorching on the bottom.
Serve your soup topped with 2 T. crumbled feta cheese.
This soup makes approximately five 1-cup servings, but this may vary depending upon the size of your squash. The soup is one WW points per serving.
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Savory Butternut Squash Soup

Main Dish, Side Dishes, soup, Uncategorized, veggies, Weight Watchers

Savory Butternut Squash Soup

Ingredients

    Ingredients:
  • 1 large butternut squash
  • ½ T. chili powder
  • ½ T. paprika
  • ½ t. red pepper flakes
  • ¼ tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. garlic salt
  • ½ c. finely chopped yellow or white onion
  • ½ c. finely chopped red bell pepper
  • 2 ½ c. fat free chicken broth
  • ¼ c. parmesan cheese
  • feta cheese for topping, if desired

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400.
  2. Split the butternut squash lengthwise and place open side down on a sheet pan that has been lined with parchment or sprayed. Roast the squash for 45 – 60 minutes until fork tender. Baking time will vary by oven and depends upon the size of the squash.
  3. Allow your squash to cool to room temperature. Remove the seeds and stringy area and discard. Scoop out the squash and puree until smooth. If you have an immersion blender they work great for this step.
  4. In a large sauce pan or soup pot, mix the pureed squash with all other ingredients except the feta cheese.
  5. Saute on low for 30 min. Be careful to allow the soup mixture to boil as this could lead to scorching on the bottom.
  6. Serve your soup topped with 2T. crumbled feta cheese.

Notes

This soup makes approximately five 1-cup servings, but this may vary depending upon the size of your squash.  The soup is only one WW points per serving.

https://foursistersdish.com/2019/11/19/savory-butternut-squash-soup/

Cider Donut Bundt Cake

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My closest friends are people who know and understand that it is totally acceptable to eat cake for breakfast!  I first had this Cider Donut Bundt Cake when a friend served it at a brunch.  It has the perfect mild apple flavor to have with a piping hot cup of coffee. Giving the recipe the perfect flavors for fall are the touch of wheat flour and the hint of spices that mix with the apple. And while I have been quoted as saying that “cake is simply a vehicle that enables the consumption of frosting,” you really can’t go wrong with this cake and a dusting of cinnamon sugar. – Tracy

Ingredients:

2 c. all-purpose flour

1 c. whole-wheat flour

2 tsp. ground cinnamon

½ tsp. ground ginger

½ tsp. salt

1 ¾ c. sugar

1 c. apple cider

¾ c. light vegetable oil (I use canola oil)

¾ c. unsweetened applesauce

2 tsp. pure vanilla extract

3 large eggs, at room temperature

2 T. melted butter

For Cinnamon Sugar Sprinkle:

1 T. cinnamon

2 T. sugar

Preheat oven to 350°F.

In a large bowl, lightly whisk together both flours, cinnamon, ginger, and salt.

In another bowl, combine sugar, cider, applesauce, oil, vanilla, and eggs.  Add egg mixture into the dry ingredients and mix well.

Pour into a very well-greased and floured bundt cake pan.  If using a flour cooking spray, spray generously.

Bake at 350 for approximately 45 minutes or until a tester comes out clean.

While cake is baking, remember to mix 1 T. of cinnamon with 2 T. of sugar for the sprinkle and set aside.

Place cake pan on a wire rack upon removal from the oven and allow to cool for 10 – 15 minutes before turning cake out onto plate.  Be careful turning out the cake as the pan itself may still be very warm.

Lightly brush cake top with melted butter and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar mixture.

Cider Donut Bundt Cake

Breakfast, Brunch, Dessert, Holiday, Uncategorized

Cider Donut Bundt Cake

Ingredients

    Ingredients:
  • 2 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 c. whole-wheat flour
  • 2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp. ground ginger
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 ¾ c. sugar
  • 1 c. apple cider
  • ¾ c. light vegetable oil (I use canola oil)
  • ¾ c. unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 T. melted butter
  • For Cinnamon Sugar Sprinkle:
  • 1 T. cinnamon
  • 2 T. sugar

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. In a large bowl, lightly whisk together both flours, cinnamon, ginger, and salt.
  3. In another bowl, combine sugar, cider, applesauce, oil, vanilla, and eggs. Add egg mixture into the dry ingredients and mix well.
  4. Pour into a very well-greased and floured bundt cake pan. If using a flour cooking spray, spray generously.
  5. Bake at 350 for approximately 45 minutes or until a tester comes out clean.
  6. While cake is baking, remember to mix 1 T. of cinnamon with 2 T. of sugar for the sprinkle and set aside.
  7. Place cake pan on a wire rack upon removal from the oven and allow to cool for 10 – 15 minutes before turning cake out onto plate. Be careful turning out the cake as the pan itself may still be very warm.
  8. Lightly brush cake top with melted butter and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar mixture.
https://foursistersdish.com/2019/11/11/cider-donut-bundt-cake/

Chicken Fajita Soup

chicken fajita soup

I love a re-make of a classic dish everyone knows and loves.  This recipe was actually born on a whim.   I was trying to think of something different for dinner (sound familiar??).  Chicken fajitas kept coming to mind but it really wasn’t quite what I wanted.   I decided to take chicken fajitas and all those great flavors and make it into a soup.  Why not!!??   It is hearty and delicious, warm and comforting.  It has all the familiar flavors but in soup form.   It’s fabulous and has joined the list of regular dinners in our house.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast
  • 2 tsp vegetable oil, divided
  • 1 medium onion, sliced into half circles
  • 1 large medium bell pepper, sliced into thin strips
  • 1 T. water
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2/3 c. canned fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1/3 c. Ro-tel tomatoes and green chilies
  • 1 (15 oz) can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/8 tsp black pepper
  • 2 T fajita seasoning (from the packet – I used McCormicks)
  • 5 c. fat free chicken broth

Slice chicken into thin strips and remove all fat.  Separate into two batches.   In a heavy dutch oven or soup pot spread 1 teaspoon oil in bottom of pan.   Turn on heat to medium-high.  Once pot is heated, add the first half of the chicken.   Sprinkle with salt and pepper.   Add garlic powder and onion powder if desired.   Brown chicken on all sides then remove to a dish and repeat with second half, after adding the other teaspoon of oil to pan.    Keep chicken covered and warm.

After the chicken is browned and removed from pot, reduce heat to medium and add onion.  Sauté the onion for about 3 minutes, until it begins to soften.  Add bell pepper and 1 T. water.  Continue to cook and stir for about 2 minutes then add garlic.  Continue until the garlic becomes fragrant.

Add fire roasted tomatoes, Ro-tel tomatoes, beans and seasonings.  Slowly add in chicken broth. Stir until combined.

Bring to a simmer and add chicken.  Simmer for an additional 15 minutes.

Serve with heated tortillas, cheese, avocado or guacamole, if desired

Makes nine 1 cup servings.

WW Info.:  Makes 9 1-cup serving at just 1 point each.

Chicken Fajita Soup

Chicken, Mexican Food, soup, Uncategorized, Weight Watchers

Chicken Fajita Soup

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast
  • 2 tsp vegetable oil, divided
  • 1 medium onion, sliced into half circles
  • 1 large medium bell pepper, sliced into thin strips
  • 1 T. water
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2/3 c. canned fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1/3 c. Ro-tel tomatoes and green chilies
  • 1 (15 oz) can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/8 tsp black pepper
  • 2 T fajita seasoning (from the packet – I used McCormicks)
  • 5 c. fat free chicken broth

Instructions

  1. Slice chicken into thin strips and remove all fat. Separate into two batches. In a heavy dutch oven or soup pot spread 1 teaspoon oil in bottom of pan. Turn on heat to medium-high. Once pot is heated, add the first half of the chicken. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Add garlic powder and onion powder if desired. Brown chicken on all sides then remove to a dish and repeat with second half, after adding the other teaspoon of oil to pan. Keep chicken covered and warm.
  2. After the chicken is browned and removed from pot, reduce heat to medium and add onion. Sauté the onion for about 3 minutes, until it begins to soften. Add bell pepper and 1 T. water. Continue to cook and stir for about 2 minutes then add garlic. Continue until the garlic becomes fragrant.
  3. Add fire roasted tomatoes, Ro-tel tomatoes, beans and seasonings. Slowly add in chicken broth. Stir until combined.
  4. Bring to a simmer and add chicken. Simmer for an additional 15 minutes.
  5. Serve with heated tortillas, cheese, avocado or guacamole, if desired
  6. Makes nine 1 cup servings.

Notes

WW Info.:  This makes 9 1-cup servings at only 1 point each!

https://foursistersdish.com/2019/10/29/chicken-fajita-soup/

Pizza Mini Meatloaves

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My husband (Erin’s) has been undergoing chemotherapy treatments for Hodgekin’s Lymphoma. He’s actually doing really well on the treatments so far and has only had minor side-effects, thank God! I pray it continues to go so smoothly. Since he was diagnosed, our family and friends have been amazing and have helped us in so many ways, including filling our freezer with meals. You wouldn’t think home-cooked meals would be that big a deal but, let me tell you, there are days when opening the freezer and choosing a meal to heat up the next day saves a lot of stress and energy. Especially on days he has chemo, it’s nice to be able to come home and heat up a good supper.

Do you ever send meals to family and friends who are ill or having surgery? If so, what do you usually make? I have several go-to recipes to use in these situations but one of my favorites is these Pizza Mini Meatloaves. For starters, they are a recipe everyone will like… what’s not to love about pizza?! They are also the perfect freezer meal because you can freeze them individually rather than in one big pan, like a casserole. The good thing about freezing them individually is that a person can choose to thaw and reheat them all or just a few at a time. Great for lunch for one person or for a family meal! When I make these at home, they rarely make it to the freezer though. My family gobbles them up! -Erin

20191014_185425

Pizza Mini Meatloaves

Main Dish, Uncategorized, Weight Watchers

Pizza Mini Meatloaves

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. turkey sweet Italian sausage links, casings removed (I used Honeysuckle White.)
  • 1 lb. 99% fat-free ground turkey breast
  • 1 c. finely chopped bell peppers – about 2 small peppers (I use my food processor.)
  • ½ c. finely chopped onion
  • 2 tsp. Italian seasoning blend
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • ½ tsp to 1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 beaten egg
  • ¾ c. seasoned bread crumbs (I use Progresso Garlic & Herb.)
  • ¾ c. jarred pizza sauce (plus more for serving, if desired)
  • 1 c. shredded low-moisture part-skim mozzarella cheese
  • 12 pepperoni slices (I use Hormel.)
  • Nonstick cooking spray

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray a 12-tin muffin pan with nonstick cooking spray; set aside.
  2. Combine turkey sausage, ground turkey breast, bell peppers, onion, Italian seasoning, garlic powder, crushed red pepper, salt and beaten egg until well incorporated.
  3. Stir in seasoned bread crumbs until just combined. Do not overwork the mixture.
  4. Fill the muffin tins with the mixture, dispersing it evenly.
  5. Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes.
  6. Remove from the oven and top each with 1 Tablespoon pizza sauce.
  7. Sprinkle the mini meatloaves evenly with shredded cheese and top each one with a slice of pepperoni.
  8. Return to the oven and continue to cook for 5 to 10 more minutes, until the cheese is melted and the internal temperature is 165°F with a meat thermometer.
  9. To freeze individually, remove them from the muffin tin and place on a wax paper lined cookie sheet. Freeze for several hours. Wrap each frozen mini meatloaf in plastic wrap and transfer to a freezer baggie or storage container before returning them to the freezer.

Notes

WW Freestyle info:  This makes 12 servings.  One serving is 4 SmartPoints.  Two servings is 9 SmartPoints with regular pepperoni or 8 SmartPoints with turkey pepperoni.

https://foursistersdish.com/2019/10/15/pizza-mini-meatloaves/

Country White Bread

We are finally starting to show some signs of fall here in our neck of the woods.  Our patience with the heat has finally been rewarded as the temps have finally dipped into the 60s – I might as well break out my blankets and firewood!  I don’t know about you, but cooler weather always makes me want to bake!  I love baking fresh bread, but until I figured out the right recipe, I wasn’t always successful.  I won’t say any recipe for bread is fail-proof, but if you follow my hints here, you’ll be able to claim some bread baking success for yourself.  I highly recommend baking this recipe when you have people to share it with, otherwise you may end up suffering an extra full belly and carb overload.  ~Tracy

Bread_logo

Ingredients:

~½ cup warm water (you can use a thermometer to make sure it’s around the 100-110 degree mark)

~2 packets quick acting yeast (I use Fleishmann’s Rapid Rise)

~1 tsp. granulated sugar

~1 ½ c. whole milk (also warmed to around 100 – 110 degrees)

~7 T. melted butter, cooled to room temperature

~1 ½ t. honey

~2 egg yolks, preferably from large eggs (reserve one of the egg white to use as a wash for loaf tops)

~5 to 6 cups all-purpose flour

~1 T. salt

  1.  Butter two 9 x 5 loaf pans and set aside.
  2.  Add yeast and sugar to warm water.  I’ve discovered the best way to keep your water warm so that the yeast can work its magic is to set the bowl on a warm heating pad.  Use a metal or glass bowl to better conduct the warmth.  Allow the yeast/water mixture to sit for around 5 minutes.
  3. It’s best to use an electric stand mixer with a dough hook for breads.  If you don’t have a stand mixer many electric hand mixers also come with a dough hook attachment.
  4. Warm the bowl of your stand mixer by running the outside/bottom of the bowl under warm water for a few minutes.  Add your yeast mixture, warm milk, butter, and honey to the bowl.  Mix until blended.
  5. Add egg yolks, 3 ½ cups of the flour, and the salt.  Mix on low speed for 5 minutes.
  6. Leave your mixer on low and add 2 more cups of flour.  You can then raise your mixer speed to medium.
  7. Slowly add the rest of the flour until the dough no longer sticks to the sides of the bowl.  It will still be a tad sticky but should begin to form a ball in the middle of your bowl.  Remember, you can always add more flour, but you can’t take it out, so add slowly.
  8. Knead the mixture on medium speed for 8 minutes (I recommend setting a timer).  You can add a few more sprinkles of flour as necessary.
  9. Dump the dough onto a floured surface and knead by hand (folding the dough over onto itself) for another minute or two.
  10. Place the bowl into a large buttered bowl.  Using a metal or glass bowl is recommended.  Cover the bowl with a thin damp towel (such as a tea towel) and place it in a warm location.  I have found that setting the bowl on your warm heating pad works best.  Remember to make sure your heating pad doesn’t automatically turn itself off after a few minutes like mine does.
  11. Leave the bread to rise in the bowl for approximately 1 hour until it seem to be about double in size.
  12. Remove the dough from the bowl and divide it in half.  I simply cut down the middle of it with a knife.
  13. Put each half in a prepared loaf pan.  Cover again with the damp towel.  Place the pans back on the heating pad and allow to rise once more until they have approximately doubled in volume.
  14. Gently beat one of the egg whites that you reserved earlier and very lightly brush the top of the loaves with egg white.
  15. Place the pans in the center of an oven preheated to 350 degrees.
  16. Bake until the loaves are golden brown – about 40 to 45 minutes.
  17. Turn out of pans and allow to cool before slicing – if you can wait that long, but I never can.
    Country White Bread

    Bread, Uncategorized

    Country White Bread

    Ingredients

    • ½ cup warm water (you can use a thermometer to make sure it’s around the 100-100 degree mark)
    • 2 packets quick acting yeast (I use Fleishmann’s Rapid Rise)
    • 1 tsp. granulated sugar
    • 1 ½ c. whole milk (also warned to around 100 – 110 degrees)
    • 7 T. melted butter, cooled to room temperature
    • 1 ½ t. honey
    • 2 egg yolks, preferably from large eggs (reserve one of the egg white to use as a wash for loaf tops)
    • 5 to 6 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1 T. salt

    Instructions

    1. Butter two 9 x 5 loaf pans and set aside.
    2. Add yeast and sugar to warm water. I’ve discovered the best way to keep your water warm so that the yeast can work its magic is to set the bowl on a warm heating pad. Use a metal or glass bowl to better conduct the warmth. Allow the yeast/water mixture to sit for around 5 minutes.
    3. It’s best to use an electric stand mixer with a dough hook for breads. If you don’t have a stand mixer many electric hand mixers also come with a dough hook attachment.
    4. Warm the bowl of your stand mixer by running the outside/bottom of the bowl under warm water for a few minutes. Add your yeast mixture, warm milk, butter, and honey to the bowl. Mix until blended.
    5. Add egg yolks, 3 ½ cups of the flour, and the salt. Mix on low speed for 5 minutes.
    6. Leave your mixer on low and add 2 more cups of flour. You can then raise your mixer speed to medium.
    7. Slowly add the rest of the flour until the dough no longer sticks to the sides of the bowl. It will still be a tad sticky but should begin to form a ball in the middle of your bowl. Remember, you can always add more flour, but you can’t take it out, so add slowly.
    8. Knead the mixture on medium speed for 8 minutes (I recommend setting a timer). You can add a few more sprinkles of flour as necessary.
    9. Dump the dough onto a floured surface and knead by hand (folding the dough over onto itself) for another minute or two.
    https://foursistersdish.com/2019/10/03/country-white-bread/

Italian Vegetable Soup

This soup happened on a Sunday when I was looking for something to accompany our simple chicken breast supper.  I had a lot of random veggies in the fridge that needed to be used before the work-week started. Why?  We all know once Monday rolls around nobody is getting any real cooking done, and veggies left in the crisper are going to their graves. I decided I might as well use everything I had and turn it into a soup that I could have for lunch all week at work.

That Sunday afternoon, this Italian Vegetable Soup was born, and it’s become one of my favorite soups to make since then.  I make it often.  It’s delicious all by itself (and zero SmartPoints on WW, by the way!) but, if you really want to kick it up a notch, add some parmesan and croutons.  Yes, please!  When I want it as more of a main dish, I toss in some pre-cooked turkey sausage (sliced links or crumbles either one are perfect).  You see why I like this soup… so customizable and flavorful!   ~Erin

ItalianVegetableSoupLogo

Ingredients:

  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 medium bell pepper, diced
  • 1 c. finely diced carrots
  • 3 ribs celery, diced
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 medium zucchini, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 2 T. Italian seasoning
  • 1-2 tsp. crushed red pepper
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 cans (14.5 oz. each) fire roasted tomatoes
  • 6 c. chicken broth
  • Optional toppings:  parmesan cheese, croutons, precooked sausage (sliced links or crumbled)

Heat olive oil over medium heat in a large stock pot.  Sauté onion, bell pepper, carrots, and celery for a few minutes until onions are translucent and veggies are tender.

Add garlic and cook until fragrant, a minute or two.

Add zucchini and seasonings; cook for a few minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add tomatoes and broth and simmer until zucchini is tender to your preference.

WW Info.:  This recipe makes approximately 10 cups.  Each 1-cup serving is zero SmartPoints on the Freestyle plan.  Be sure to add points for any additional toppings.

Italian Vegetable Soup

soup, veggies, Weight Watchers

Italian Vegetable Soup

Ingredients

  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 medium bell pepper, diced
  • 1 c. finely diced carrots
  • 3 ribs celery, diced
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 medium zucchini, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 2 T. Italian seasoning
  • 1-2 tsp. crushed red pepper
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 cans (14.5 oz. each) fire roasted tomatoes
  • 6 c. chicken broth
  • Optional toppings: parmesan cheese, croutons, precooked sausage (sliced links or crumbled)

Instructions

  1. Heat olive oil over medium heat in a large stock pot. Sauté onion, bell pepper, carrots, and celery for a few minutes until onions are translucent and veggies are tender.
  2. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, a minute or two.
  3. Add zucchini and seasonings; cook for a few minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Add tomatoes and broth and simmer until zucchini is tender to your preference.

Notes

WW Freestyle Info.:  This recipe makes approximately 10 cups.  Each 1-cup serving is zero SmartPoints.  Be sure to add points for any additional toppings.

https://foursistersdish.com/2019/09/17/italian-vegetable-soup/

Orange Ginger Beef

As a teacher and busy mom, I don’t have time to cook all evening.  There are papers to grade and kids who need help with homework.  So, now that school has started back, I’m all about meals I can prepare in a short period of time.  This Orange Beef is one of my favorite week-night meals.  It can be on the table in less than 30 minutes… really more like 15, including the time it takes to slice the steak.  Plus, the Asian flavors hit the spot on a night I’m tempted to pick up Chinese take-out on the way home from work.  Fake-out take-out at its best!  ~Erin

20190901_221618.jpg

  • 1 lb. New York strip steaks, trimmed and cut into small strips
  • 3 thinly sliced scallions
  • 2 tsp. ginger paste
  • Zest of half a navel orange
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. pepper
  • ½ T. canola or vegetable oil
  • ½ T. sesame oil
  • 2 T. packed brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. corn starch
  • 2 T. water
  • ¼ c. fresh squeezed orange juice
  • 1 T. unfiltered apple cider vinegar
  • 2 T. low-sodium soy sauce
  • Optional: crushed red pepper flakes, additional sliced scallions; for garnish
  • Prepared rice or cauliflower rice*, for serving

In a medium bowl, mix beef strips with thinly sliced scallions, ginger paste, orange zest, and salt and pepper until evenly coated.

Heat canola and sesame oil together in a large skillet over medium high heat.

When the skillet is very hot, add the beef and cook for about 5 minutes, turning occasionally.

In a small bowl, whisk together the brown sugar with the corn starch.  Once combined, whisk in the water, fresh-squeezed orange juice, apple cider vinegar, and soy sauce.

Add the mixture to the skillet with the beef; simmer on medium high until thickened, 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Serve over rice or cauliflower rice; garnish with crushed red pepper flakes and sliced scallions, if desired.

*I find cauliflower rice to have the best flavor when sautéed in a nonstick skillet, using a few sprays of nonstick cooking spray.  Keep the lid on until it thaws, if using frozen.

WW Freestyle Info.:  This recipe makes 4 servings.  Each serving is 10 SmartPoints, not including rice.

Orange Ginger Beef

Beef, Uncategorized

Orange Ginger Beef

This fake-out take-out Orange Ginger Beef is ready in minutes.  10 SmartPoints on WW Freestyle.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. New York strip steaks, trimmed and cut into small strips
  • 3 thinly sliced scallions
  • 2 tsp. ginger paste
  • Zest of half a navel orange
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. pepper
  • ½ T. canola or vegetable oil
  • ½ T. sesame oil
  • 2 T. packed brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. corn starch
  • 2 T. water
  • ¼ c. fresh squeezed orange juice
  • 1 T. unfiltered apple cider vinegar
  • 2 T. low-sodium soy sauce
  • Optional: crushed red pepper flakes, additional sliced scallions; for garnish
  • Prepared rice or cauliflower rice*, for serving

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl, mix beef strips with thinly sliced scallions, ginger paste, orange zest, and salt and pepper until evenly coated.
  2. Heat canola and sesame oil together in a large skillet over medium high heat.
  3. When the skillet is very hot, add the beef and cook for about 5 minutes, turning occasionally.
  4. In a small bowl, whisk together the brown sugar with the corn starch. Once combined, whisk in the water, fresh-squeezed orange juice, apple cider vinegar, and soy sauce.
  5. Add the mixture to the skillet with the beef; simmer on medium high until thickened, 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  6. Serve over rice or cauliflower rice; garnish with crushed red pepper flakes and sliced scallions, if desired.

Notes

*I find cauliflower rice to have the best flavor when sautéed in a nonstick skillet, using a few sprays of nonstick cooking spray.  Keep the lid on until it thaws, if using frozen.

WW Freestyle Info.:  This recipe makes 4 servings.  Each serving is 10 SmartPoints, not including rice.

https://foursistersdish.com/2019/09/03/orange-ginger-beef/

Mexican Street Corn Salad

Mexican street corn (elote) is all the rage.   It’s basically been the epitome of summer cuisine this year. Everywhere I turn, it’s offered. Restaurants, farmers markets, food trucks — you name it. For those of you that have not been introduced to it yet, you have been missing out.  It combines a wild variety of Tex-Mex flavors to transport you to another not-so-far-away land…hopefully one that includes a beach. ☺

Anything that is this popular and all the buzz must be sticking around.  This salad (off the cob) version is equally spectacular. I scribbled down this recipe one day on my lunch break and knew I had to make it soon.  When I mixed this together, even I was surprised how good it was. It has all the flavor you want in traditional street corn plus some tasty twists of my own.  Try it while corn season is HOT!!  ~Kathy

MexicanStreetCornSalad_Logo

Salad Ingredients:

  • 6 ears of corn, husks and silks removed; cooked and cut off the cob (about 4.5 cups of corn depending on size of ears)
  • 2 T. cilantro, chopped
  • 1 to 2 T. jalapeno, finely chopped (seeds and ribs removed)
  • 1/4 c. red onion, finely chopped
  • ¾ c. queso fresco, crumbled fine

Sauce Ingredients:

  • 1/3 c. light miracle whip
  • 1/4 c. plain non-fat Greek yogurt*
  • 1/2 tsp. chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 T. lime juice, freshly squeezed
  • 1/2 tsp. lime zest
  • salt & pepper to taste

Combine sauce ingredients in a small bowl.  Mix well and set aside.

In a medium sized mixing bowl, combine salad ingredients, except cheese.  Stir in sauce ingredients.  Add cheese, fold together and serve.

WW Info.:  Makes 6 one-cup servings at just 2 points each.

*May use low fat sour cream instead of non-fat Greek yogurt; it’s 3 points per cup with this substitution.

Mexican Street Corn Salad

Salad, Side Dishes, Uncategorized, veggies, Weight Watchers

6

Mexican Street Corn Salad

Ingredients

    Salad Ingredients:
  • 6 ears of corn, husks and silks removed; cooked and cut off the cob (about 4.5 cups of corn depending on size of ears)
  • 2 T. cilantro, chopped
  • 1 to 2 T. jalapeno, finely chopped (seeds and ribs removed)
  • 1/4 c. red onion, finely chopped
  • ¾ c. queso fresco, crumbled fine
    Sauce:
  • 1/3 c. light miracle whip
  • 1/4 c. plain non-fat Greek yogurt*
  • 1/2 tsp. chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 T. lime juice, freshly squeezed
  • 1/2 tsp. lime zest
  • salt & pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Combine sauce ingredients in a small bowl. Mix well and set aside.
  2. In a medium sized mixing bowl, combine salad ingredients, except cheese.
  3. Stir in sauce ingredients.
  4. Add cheese, fold together, and serve.

Notes

WW Info.:  Makes 6 one-cup servings at just 2 points each. 

*May use low fat sour cream instead of non-fat Greek yogurt; it’s 3 points per cup with this substitution.


https://foursistersdish.com/2019/08/27/mexican-street-corn-salad/

Spicy Air Fried Chickpeas

All the Christmas in July talk had me craving my Chistmas snacks.  For the last several Christmases my friend Kena has gifted us a large bag of her spicy pretzels.  They are so good and I look forward to her gift of them every year (are you reading this Kena?)!  They have the perfect combination of a salty crunch with a bit of spice to them.  The ONLY negative is that the pretzel recipe has a pretty significant about of oil in the ingredients.  I am a snacker, and often find myself looking for something to munch on.  These chickpeas satisfy my craving for that spicy crunch, but keep the snack on the healthier side  – and they let me keep looking forward to Kena’s Christmas pretzels! ~Tracy

chickpeas

Ingredients:

  • 1 15 oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed (I used Bush’s Organic Garbanzo Beans)
  • ½ tsp. garlic salt
  • ¼ tsp. lemon pepper
  • ½ tsp. red cayenne pepper
  • ¼ tsp. onion powder
  • 1 T. powdered ranch dressing mix
  • dash salt
  • dash black pepper
  • Canola oil cooking spray

Spread chickpeas evenly in one flat layer on paper towels.  Allow them to dry on the kitchen counter for three to four hours, rolling them occasionally so that they evenly dry on all sides.

Lightly spray chickpeas with canola oil cooking spray.  Roll them around and lightly spray again making an effort to coat them lightly, but evenly.

In a large zip style baggie, combine all dry ingredients and shake to combine well.  Add the sprayed chickpeas to the bag, seal, and gently shake to coat the chickpeas with the spice mixture.

Place chickpeas in the basket of air fryer and cook on 340 for 14-16 minutes. You can click here for the link to my air fryer.

Air fryers vary in power, so begin to check the chickpeas at about the 14 minute mark for the desired crispiness.  My family likes them very crispy, but I don’t mind them with a little softness in the center.  You can experiment with what you like.

Chickpeas are ZERO WW points!  Some may argue that with the cooking spray these should be counted on WW, but per serving I’m not going to count the negligible amount.

Spicy Air Fried Chickpeas

Air Fryer, Appetizer, Holiday, Uncategorized, veggies, Weight Watchers

Spicy Air Fried Chickpeas

Ingredients

  • 1 15 oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed (I used Bush’s Organic Garbanzo Beans)
  • ½ tsp. garlic salt
  • ¼ tsp. lemon pepper
  • ½ tsp. red cayenne pepper
  • ¼ tsp. onion powder
  • 1 T. powdered ranch dressing mix
  • dash salt
  • dash black pepper
  • Canola oil cooking spray

Instructions

  1. Spread chickpeas evenly in one flat layer on paper towels. Allow them to dry on the kitchen counter for three to four hours, rolling them occasionally so that they evenly dry on all sides.
  2. Lightly spray chickpeas with canola oil cooking spray. Roll them around and lightly spray again making an effort to coat them lightly, but evenly.
  3. In a large zip style baggie, combine all dry ingredients and shake to combine well. Add the sprayed chickpeas to the bag, seal, and gently shake to coat the chickpeas with the spice mixture.
  4. Place chickpeas in the basket of air fryer and cook on 340 for 14-16 minutes.
  5. Air fryers vary in power, so begin to check the chickpeas at about the 14 minute mark for the desired crispiness. My family likes them very crispy, but I don’t mind them with a little softness in the center. You can experiment with what you like.

Notes

Chickpeas are ZERO WW points! Some may argue that with the cooking spray these should be counted on WW, but per serving I’m not going to count the negligible amount.

https://foursistersdish.com/2019/08/15/spicy-air-fried-chickpeas/