Bland. Flavorless. Boring. “Heart healthy” and “delicious recipes” are phrases that sound like they do not go together. If you’re determined to begin eating a heart-healthy diet, it does not mean you have to give up good-tasting food. Nor does it mean that the recipes have to have multiple ingredients. You can cook a complete meal-appetizer, beverage, salad, main and side dish that are all heart healthy and made from just four ingredients.
Make Baked Potato Skins as an appetizer. Wash a medium potato and prick the skin with a fork several times. Wrap in a piece of plastic wrap and microwave for 10 minutes. Cut the potato in half and scoop out the center of the potato, leaving about 1/8 inch on the skin. Place on a baking sheet, spray the skin with butter flavored cooking spray and sprinkle with herbs, such as garlic, rosemary or basil and pepper. Bake in a preheated 375 degree oven for 5 to 10 minutes until the skins are crisp.
Make a Minted Melon-berry Smoothie. In a blender or food processor, put 7 cups of seeded watermelon and blend until it is smooth. Pour through a strainer to remove excess pulp. Mix in 1 cup of sugar-free cranberry juice, a cup lime or lemon juice, and 6 sprigs of mint. Serve chilled.
Prepare Mandarin Tomato Salad. Wash Romaine or red-leaf lettuce and drain or blot dry. Tear or cut into pieces, to measure about 1 cup, into a serving bowl. Add half of an 11-oz. can Mandarin oranges and 6 to 8 grape tomatoes. Make a vinaigrette with 2 teaspoons of olive oil with a teaspoon lemon juice. Pour over salad and toss.
Bake Paprika Chicken. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Put skinless chicken breasts on a broiler pan. Spray each chicken breast with a butter-flavored cooking spray. Lay slices of onion on the top of the chicken breasts and sprinkle with paprika. Bake 30 to 45 minutes or until done.
Steam Lemon Veggies. Cut a variety of vegetables–broccoli, carrots, celery, bell pepper, or cauliflower–into bite sized bits; rinse. Place a steaming basket in the bottom of a saucepan and pour water to the bottom of the steaming basket. Add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice. Bring the water to a boil and place vegetables on top of the steaming basket. Put the lid on the saucepan and let it boil for 4 minutes. Put steamed vegetables in a bowl and spray them with a butter-flavored cooking spray.