Spring Clean Your Food Routine

As we march into springtime we see buds blooming, grass growing, leaves sprouting, less darkness and warmer temperatures. We may be spring cleaning our home, apartment, clearing the clutter, swapping out our wardrobe, but why not apply spring cleaning to our food choices as well. Time to plant the seed to #feedtheneed with the #wealthonourshelf.

Think lighten up and brighten up. Gray days give way to blue skies, chilly weather is replaced by warmth so our food choices can change seasons too. Just as we may discard extra clothing layers and simplify, going with brighter colors and lighter weight apparels, we can do a food wardrobe makeover as well.

Color up the plate with fruits and veggies

Orange carrots, citrus fruits, peaches/nectarines

Yellow mango, pineapple, banana, lemons, grapefruit

Green and dark green leafy vegetables, and asparagus, avocado, kiwi, broccoli, Bokchoy, celery, cabbage, peas, limes, pears, leeks

Purple beets

Red strawberries and tomatoes, apples


White- mushrooms, onions, parsnips, cauliflower, potatoes

Bring the crunch

Add chopped celery or carrots to a tuna or egg salad

Include raw broccoli/cauliflower as dippers

Slice a pear or apple into a salad

Make a raw grated beet, arugula and grapefruit  or peach salad

Capitalize on the flavor

Onions added to a stir fry, dip or salad

Citrus fruit and zest mixed with greens and olive oil for a light, bright salad

Sweet/tart flavor of pineapple /mango mixed into a salsa or a stir fry

Add the dreamy and creamy

Avocado in a smoothie

Avocado to add the richness to a broccoli bisque

Avocado instead of cream to add a delightful mouthfeel to a spring pasta

Hip hip puree to pureed parsnips, potatoes, peas and leeks in a spring-focused soup

Try an old fav a new way

Liven up your salad with different greens such as red leaf lettuce and arugula

Add some tropical flavor to a smoothie with mangoes and pineapple

Try a pasta dish with peas, asparagus, Parmesan and lemon zest

Serve steamed and cooled marinated asparagus spears for a spring salad- I love a mustard, shallot vinaigrette

Produce brings the flavor, the fiber, the fluid, the vitamins and minerals and the plant nutrients to put some pep in your step, pizazz to your palate and health benefits in every bite. So bring the rainbow to the plate with produce in your glass, bowl or plate to make your eating plan great! #HaveaPlant

Think Your Drink

As a registered dietitian, and sports dietitian for the Kansas City Chiefs. I am all about making sure my athletes are ready to play every day. Drinking enough fluid is key and needs to be a priority. Hydration NEVER takes a vacation. So, it is important to #ThinkYourDrink

Why does consuming enough fluid matter? Hydration is important for digestion, regulating our temperature, transporting nutrients to the cells, and improving strength, speed and stamina. If we don’t consume enough fluid, we will be slower, weaker and tire earlier in activity as well as have an increased risk for injury.

What counts as a fluid?

We could choose to drink

  • Water- regular or carbonated
  • Milk
  • Juice
  • Lemonade
  • Coffee or tea
  • Or when appropriate sports drinks- during longer duration practices/workouts or competition

We can also choose water-containing foods such as:

  • Fruits
  • Veggies
  • Popsicles
  • Gelatin
  • Soups

So how do you know if you are drinking enough fluid?

What is the color of your urine?

If you don’t drink enough, you may experience one or more of the following:

  • Noticeable thirst
  • Muscle cramps
  • Weakness
  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Fatigue
  • Burning in stomach
  • Dry mouth
  • Dizziness/lightheadedness
  • Impaired performance

How do we make good hydration a habit?

First, you need to drink enough every day to meet baseline fluid needs:

  • 16-20 ounces of fluid within 10 minutes of waking up
  • 10-20 ounces of fluid with every meal
  • 10-12 ounces with every snack
  • 10-20 ounces BEFORE BED


Do try to drink 20 oz of fluid 1 hour before exercise (could be a combination of fluids such as milk, water, or juice)- OR 10 ounces 15 minutes BEFORE either water or a sports drink or diluted juice.


When your body is active, you need to think about not only how much you drink but HOW you drink:

  • Larger gulps over sips- to empty the stomach faster and get into the exercising muscles
  • Swallow fluids, do not spit
  • Drink, don’t pour fluid on your head
  • Do NOT overdrink- more is not better- you need to drink enough but not too much
  • Drink 3 cups of fluid for every pound lost in the hours after exercise
  • Sports drink or water or a combination of these are the best fluid choices during exercise
  • Be careful with energy drinks, which are high in caffeine content, but don’t contain the electrolytes that exercising muscles need.


If you are a salt loser, you need to use more!

How do you know if you are a salty sweater?

  • Your sweat may burn your eyes and/or taste salty.
  • You may also notice salty residue on skin or uniform/clothes

What can you Do?

  • Eat salty foods such as pickles, pretzels, crackers, salted nuts
  • Use salt, Soy or Worcestershire sauce
  • Cook rice or pasta with salt, bouillon, or broth
  • Use sports drinks instead of water to provide sodium and help replace what is lost through sweating
  • Consider adding salt to a sports drink. One-quarter teaspoon added to 20 ounces of sports drink or one-half teaspoon of salt added to 32 ounces of sports drink


Treat Your Body Right

As a registered dietitian, sports dietitian and the sports dietitian for the Kansas City Chiefs, I am all about being an ath-vocate, making sure my athletes respect, not neglect their bodies by treating it right.

There is a lot of misinformation online about what to and what not to eat, food blaming and body shaming. I want you to think about what works for you. No one can eat for you or move for you. Self-health is key to be your best in the classroom as well as in sport.

Bodies come in all shapes and sizes and your ability to be your best is NOT determined by a number on the scale or the size of your jeans. The goal is to be fit, fed, fearless and foodies not feudies.

So what gets in the way of us being our best?

Negative self-talk- just shut it down. Focus on what your body allows you to do.

Skipping meals or restricting food – this makes you weak, slow, and fatigued and can have a negative impact on your ability to learn and train as it leads to energy drain. You need to eat enough to satisfy your basic needs and help you succeed in sports.

Not getting enough sleep- this is the time for our body to restore so we can do more. Make an effort to get in your zzzs!

Labeling foods as good or bad- the only bad foods are ones that you are allergic to, intolerant to or the food is spoiled.

Consuming too much caffeine as coffee, energy drinks or other caffeinated beverages. Caffeine is a stimulant, not a source of energy and can make you so wired that you don’t feel tired, and when you are trying to sleep your body cannot get the rest it needs to recover and restore so you can do more.

Choosing a supplement over food- supplements are a complement to what we eat, not a replacement for the food we choose. Sometimes we need to take supplements to correct a deficiency, but a supplement is not a meal!

What helps us to be our best?

Positive self-talk- what do you say to yourself every day? You should be your own best cheerleader.

Getting enough rest

Taking time to chill and unplug

Taking a break from negative social media- unfollow what makes you mad or sad

Fueling not fooling your body

Showing up for practices and competition fueled and hydrated

Being consistent with fueling and hydration every day

Seeking professional help if trying to make changes to one’s body such as working with a registered dietitian.

Surrounding yourself with those who support you- family, friends, teammates, health care professionals

Find ways to nourish and nurture yourself every day in every way

Prime Time

As a registered dietitian, and sports dietitian for the 2020 Superbowl Champion Kansas City Chiefs, I think food and fluid timing is the number one priority! If you are active you need to think about how you PREPARE your body for practice, workout, conditioning, or competition and how to best REPAIR from exercise so you can do it again. That means being in PRIME TIME considering how many times you eat and drink over the day the what, when and how much fluid/food you consume pre and post exercise. Eating and drinking consistently through the day helps your body and brain to be energized and focused, and provides fluid and fuel for exercising muscles as well.

Let’s start with timing around exercise. Ideally you should have something to eat/drink 1 hour before exercise – so you don’t start out on empty. This is part of your warm up.
Less is more- a small amount of food works such as

  • ½ sandwich
  • ½ of a bar
  • ½ of a bottled smoothie or about a 10-ounce glass
  • A handful of trail mix


The goal is to start to recover sooner than later so you don’t want to wait too long to hydrate or eat to help your body replenish and restore

Do drink enough to replace losses- 20-24 ounces of fluid for every pound you lose during exercise in the hours after you are done.
Does your urine look more like lemonade than apple juice? If so, good, and if not, you will need to drink more.
Did your thirst subside?
Eat something within 15 minutes of exercise such as a bottle of chocolate milk, cereal bar, trail mix, or protein bar to help your body recover more quickly.
Protein + Carbohydrate after practice/games- within 30 minutes can help you to recover faster.

This is a winning combo

Protein sources (g)
2 TBSP peanut butter-
12 oz low/full fat chocolate milk
¼ cup nuts
6 cheese cubes
Jerky-3-4 pieces

Carbohydrate sources (g)
½ of a bagel
12 oz low/full fat chocolate milk
1/2 cup cereal
Pretzel sticks 5-6

So how many times a day should you plan on eating?
Let’s think about food as energy breaks- a time to fuel up for body and brain so you can learn and train.

Eat something within 1 hour of getting up. If you are exercising early in the day- you don’t want to be on empty, but you don’t have to eat a large volume either.

Yogurt with fruit and cereal
A smoothie
Cereal with milk and a banana
Toast, fruit cup and hard boiled egg

If you train in the morning, have half your breakfast BEFORE and the other half AFTER activity.

Do try to eat something every 4-5 hours throughout the day. This keeps your energy up and helps to prevent being overly hungry later, and better distributes nutrients over the day.

You may have heard that you shouldn’t eat after 7 PM. First of all, the body does not really know what time it is. I don’t like anyone waiting until 7 or later to start eating, but if you have a game, or workout or practice in the evening, you are going to need to eat something both before and after. And actually, I do like the idea of a pre-bed snack to help the body recover and restore so you can do more.

Let’s focus on consistency and frequency in terms of when you eat whether to train or compete.

Create a Great Plate

As a registered dietitian, and sports dietitian for the Kansas City Chiefs- I always talk with my athletes about how to Create a Great Plate.

Let’s talk about what you may want to put on the plate. You need to customize and personalize to include foods you like and what you have at home.

½ of the plate should be produce (green in the picture) this is fruits and veggies that can be fresh, frozen, canned, dried, and raw or cooked.
¼ of the plate should be carbs including grains such as pasta, cereal, bread, rice, bagels, crackers as well as corn and potatoes.
¼ of the plate should be protein such as meat, poultry, fish, eggs, milk, yogurt, cheese, cottage cheese, soy foods, beans and peas.

Do include

  • Fat – nuts, nut butter, avocado, oil, salad dressing
  • Flavors such as salt, herb, spices, ketchup, mustard
  • Fluids- such as milk, water, juice, lemonade

Carbohydrate containing foods are all stars for quick and longer lasting energy for body and brain so you can think and train.
3/4 of the plate should be carbs in the form of rice, pasta, potato, bread, cereal, fruit, vegetables

Good sources of carbohydrate include:

It is important to include protein containing foods at every meal and snack 1/4 of the plate as chicken, fish, meat, eggs, cheese, soy foods nuts, seeds, beans.

Do include PROTEIN AT BREAKFAST such as

  • Cheese- slices, String cheese, or 5-6 cheese cubes
  • Egg
  • Cottage cheese
  • Greek yogurt
  • A protein smoothie with milk, yogurt and/or protein isolate
  • Cheese on a bagel, not cream cheese
  • Peanut butter on an English muffin
  • Bar with some protein in it

What foods could you put in your bowl or on your plate?


Baked beans
Veggie burgers
Bean dip
Peanut butter
Roasted chickpeas/lentils

  • Protein after workouts can help your body with muscle protein synthesis so you can repair and restore from exercise.
  • Consuming enough protein is also important to support a healthy immune system.
  • And protein is a key component of healthy bones, joints, ligaments and tendons as well as muscles.

Add some as part of every meal as a spread, peanut butter, salad dressing, or in a food such as cheese, meat, or even a fried food.
There is no need to cut fat out of the diet.
Limit fat containing foods BEFORE exercise as they can upset your gut!
Do include some fat as part of every meal and snack.

Good sources of fat include:
Nuts/nut butters
Olives/Olive oil
Mayonnaise Sunflower, corn, safflower, soybean, corn oils
Whipped butter or spreads
Fatty fish such as salmon, albacore tuna, sardines, mackerel
Ground flaxseed, Chia seeds

What you eat can make a difference in helping you to be well, live well and play well!


Don’t let the heat result in an exercise or performance defeat! As the temperature continues to soar, you need to make sure you stay on top of your fluid needs as you #thinkyourdrink.

Hydration is critically important for sports performance in terms of strength, speed and stamina, and If you don’t consume enough fluid you will be slower, weaker and tire earlier in activity as well as have an increased risk for injury.
Optimizing daily fluid intake is vital to internal temperature regulation , circulation, digestion, cell protection and more. Being proactive instead of reactive in terms of consistency, frequency, quality, and quantity of fluids is key. If you spend a lot of time outdoors in hot and steamy weather you need to be on top of your fluid game. As preseason for high schools, college and professional sports near, this is the time to ace your hydration plan.

What counts as a fluid?

There are lots of ways to hydrate. You could choose to drink

  • Water- regular or carbonated
  • Juice
  • Milk
  • Lemonade
  • Coffee or tea
  • A sports drink such as GOODSport which is a fluid, but also a form of energy for working muscles and an excellent source of electrolytes.

You can also choose water-containing foods such as:

  • Fruits- especially melons, berries, citrus fruit
  • Veggies- peppers, tomatoes, celery, lettuce, cucumber, zucchini
  • Popsicles
  • Gelatin
  • Soups- such as Gazpacho or a cold fruit soup which can be chilling and refreshing when it is hot outside

So how do you know if you are not drinking enough fluid?
What is the color of your urine? (more the color of lemonade or apple juice?)

What may you notice if you are not well hydrated?

Noticeable thirst
Muscle cramps
Burning in stomach
Dry mouth
Impaired performance

How do we make good hydration a habit?


  • 16-20 ounces of fluid within 10 minutes of waking up
  • 10-20 ounces of fluid with every meal
  • 10-12 ounces with every snack
  • 10-20 ounces BEFORE BED

Do try for 20 oz of fluid 1 hour before exercise GoodSport is an excellent choice as it provides fluid with additional performance benefits ( carbs + electrolytes) It takes about 60 minutes for 20 ounces of fluid to leave the stomach so this gives you to time to digest without distress. Make this part of your warm up for practice or play.


  • Larger gulps over sips
  • Swallow fluids, do not spit
  • Drink, don’t pour on your head
  • Do NOT overdrink- more is not better and can be harmful
  • Both water and sports drinks are your best choice during exercise

Start to rehydrate before it is too late. Ideally you should drink 20-24 ounces of fluid for every pound lost DURING exercise. You don’t have to drink it all at once, but over the hours after activity is done. This could be

  • Water
  • Juice
  • GoodSport
  • Fruits/veggies
  • Popsicles
  • Smoothies
  • Slushies
  • Fruit ice

Do plan to drink on a schedule and include the foods and fluids that you enjoy. Prioritize, strategize and optimize.


#FEEDTHENEED with intuition in the kitchen for baby’s first bites

Whether you are a parent, grandparent, guardian or caretaker you have a big role to play in helping your little ones

to be nurtured and nourished every day. For children two years old and under you want to capitalize on opportunities

to introduce foods at the right time, with variety to increase acceptance, to set the stage for future eating habits and minimize picky eating and food rejection. Do take advantage of foods that fit within your budget, and are easy to

prepare, and remember the right portion size is key when it comes to feeding little ones appropriately.

For babies under the age of 12 months, keep in mind that there are no recommended serving or portion sizes. Instead, the concept of responsive eating- “parent provides, child decides” can be your guide. As the food giver, your role is to provide safe and nutritious foods, and your child(ren) decide how much and whether or not to eat.

Here are some resources for more information on this topic

US Dept HHS video

Division of Responsibility

Picky Eating

For guidance of food choices and portions for children between the ages of one to three years of age, the American Academy of Pediatrics has excellent resources.

You can learn more about foods to include and exclude by age group in this resource from the American Academy of Pediatrics and National Dairy Council. Airplane Choo-Choo

And, there are also additional resources from MyPlate.gov

Of course, you should always check with your pediatrician for individual guidance.

To make food introduction an engaging and positive experience, do keep these tips in mind.

  • Think about foods that pair well together like dairy foods with produce and grains and provide nutrient amplification
  • Encourage self-feeding- don’t stress about the mess. Let your littles ones be hands- on and hands -in and save the clean- up and clean- off until they are done eating.
  • Offer a food more than once – exposure is key to familiarity and acceptance.
  • Minimize the distraction to increase eating attraction by creating a stress free, non-rushed eating environment
  • Food is an essential component of nourishing and nurturing and should never be used as a reward or punishment.
  • A nurturing feeding environment helps to set the stage by providing positive food-related experiences
  • Do encourage, enable and empower your little ones with the discovery of food by providing variety, in the right amounts and the right form

Pregnant Or Breastfeeding Nutrition: What You Eat Can Impact Your Baby’s Cognition

It’s smart to give your baby a healthy start and that means controlling what we can with our eating plan. Whether you are looking to conceive, are pregnant or nursing you want to be preventative, proactive and impactful with foods that deliver optimal nutrition for the fetus and infant.


What you choose to eat can affect your baby’s brain health. The goal is to make sure you meet the daily recommendations of the critical cognitive bundle ( iodine, choline and B12) through the foods you eat. It is hard to get what you need through supplements alone and some supplements may not even contain iodine.

You may be asking how do iodine, choline and vitamin B12 work?

https://www.usdairy.com/getmedia/ 742daba8-d686-4bcc-89cf-b352c95050d4/NDC_Lifespan_Pregnancy-and-Breastfeeding_FINAL-12-01-2021.pdf

IODINE– helps support brain development and protect against neurocognitive defects. Iodine needs increase 50% during pregnancy.

Iodine deficiency is the most preventable cause of intellectual disability.

CHOLINE– helps support growth and development of the baby’s brain and spinal cord.

VITAMIN B12– helps prevent deficiencies that can result in permanent neurological damage.

Increasing or making sure you are eating the recommended daily servings from the dairy food group (i.e., milk, yogurt and cheese) is a good way to ensure adequate iodine intake which benefits fetal and infant neurocognitive development. Milk, cheese and yogurt contain vitamin B12 and some contain choline as well (e.g., 8 ounces of milk provides 8% of the Daily Value for choline). In addition, dairy foods are a source of potassium, calcium and vitamin D, which are nutrients of concern in the U.S.(not consumed in adequate amounts) and are of benefit to mother and child. Pregnant and breastfeeding women who optimize dairy intake help their babies nourish to flourish regarding growth and development as well as cognitive potential.

Source: Higgins K et al. Nutrition and Health https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih/gov/pmc/articles/PMC7258892/

Eating the recommended 3 daily servings of dairy can help you get more nutritional benefits per sip or bite. Plus, foods should be the first option, followed by supplementation because foods provide calories, macronutrients (i.e., protein, carbohydrate and fat), vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients (i.e., plant nutrients) to increase the nutritional value.


What foods should you include to increase your intake of iodine, choline and B12?

Nutritional Yeast
Cereal, enriched
Iodized salt





Savory Breakfast Oatmeal

1 cup oats, dry
1 cup dairy milk
¼ cup shredded cheese
1 egg
1 cup baby spinach, chopped or use frozen, thawed and drained
½ cup canned tomatoes, drained or fresh, chopped
½ cup onion, chopped
Iodized salt and pepper to taste
Cayenne pepper or hot sauce if desired

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a pan, sauté 1 cup spinach and ¼ cup chopped onion with tomatoes in 2 teaspoons olive oil.
In a bowl mix 1 cup oats, 1 cup milk, 1 beaten egg and ¼ cup shredded cheese. Add the vegetables and spoon into an 8×8 baking dish. Cook for 30 minutes.

Baked Cod with Greek Yogurt/Cereal Topping

4 cod fillets- fresh or frozen
1 cup plain Greek yogurt
½ cup crushed flake-type cereal or breadcrumbs
Minced garlic, 2 cloves
Paprika- ½ teaspoon
Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix together Greek yogurt, a whole grain flake-type cereal or breadcrumbs, garlic and spices. Coat cod filets with the mixture and bake 30 minutes or until fish is flaky.
Serve with pasta (cooked in water with iodized salt) and tossed with broccoli, garlic, and olive oil and garnished with shredded cheese.


Create a great glass, bowl or plate with ease and foods that are sure to please with accessibility, versatility and affordability to help you and your baby strive and thrive.

See the iodine resource for more tips and ideas


Produce On The Plate To Help Make Your Holidays Great

Tis the season for food, friends and fun and let me emphasize food! Cookies, fruit cake, holiday dinners, buffets are part of what makes the season bright, right? How about if we add some produce in the mix as the base of an appetizer, as a garnish sprinkled on a flatbread, or as the dippers? Here are 4 appetizers that score high on taste with delish flavor combinations and nutrient amplifications. Unleash your inner creativity with decorations to add to the festivity.


Reduced fat cream cheese- Neufchatel or Farmers- 3 ounce
Canned pumpkin- ½ cup
Applesauce, unsweetened- ¼ cup
Vanilla full fat Greek yogurt- 5 ounce container
Orange zest- 2 tsps
Brown sugar- 2 TBSP
Pumpkin pie spice- 1 teaspoon

Use an electric mixer to beat the cream cheese, add in pumpkin, applesauce, Greek yogurt, brown sugar, orange zest and pumpkin pie spice.
Adorn the pumpkin “tree” with boughs of fruit

Serve with:
Apple slices, skin on
Pear slices, skin on
Apple chips



Hummus- 1 container
Crumbled feta-1/2 cup
Chopped pistachios- ¼ cup
Diced roasted red peppers- ¼ cup
Chopped kalamata Olives- ¼ cup
Diced Cucumber, skin on- ¼ cup
Green onions, ¼ cup chopped

In a shallow bowl, layer
Red peppers
Green onions

Serve with any of the following:
Pita chips
Lentil Chips
Chickpea chips
Raw veggies

And to take it up a notch, form the hummus into the shape of a tree, star, menorah and sprinkle with peppers, olives, green onions, cucumber, pistachios and feta



Ricotta, whole milk – ¾  cup
Juice from 1 orange
Grated orange peel- 1 teaspoon
Grated gingerroot- 1 teaspoon
Honey roasted pistachios
Pomegranate arils

Spread a thin layer of ricotta on a dried fruit and nut crackers and sprinkle Pomegranate arils and pistachios on top



1 12 oz jar of roasted red peppers, drained well
¾ cup walnut halves
1/2 cup canned lentils, drained
1 garlic clove, minced
2 TBSP olive oil
1/4 cup bread crumbs, plain
1-1/2 tsp lemon juice
1 TBSP pomegranate molasses (or 1.5 teaspoons balsamic vinegar + 1 tsp honey)
½ tsp Sea salt
½ tsp red pepper flakes
½ tsp ground cumin
½ tsp smoked paprika


In a food processor with a metal blade, pulse the walnuts, then add lentils and garlic and olive oil, add in remainder of ingredients. Pulse until blended . Unleash your creativity shaping the dippers like a tree

Cauliflower florets
Broccoli florets

Ring in the holidays with a ho-ho-ho and lots of yum, wishing you good cheer, great eats and a delicious , nutritious New Year. #haveaplant

Produce and Pasta – Perfect Pairing for Sharing

Are you searching for meal ideas that can be prepped with ease that are sure to please? Pasta and produce is a flavor-filled combination that also delivers on nutrient amplification. How about penne with marinara, pasta e fagioli, minestrone, pasta primavera, veggie lasagna,  linguini with zucchini; broccoli, ricotta and orecchiette, and butternut squash ravioli just to mention a few. What could be better than pasta paired with produce?


The beauty of these dishes is that they can be prepared with the #wealthonyourshelf. Boxes or bags of pasta, frozen ravioli or tortellini, or even freshly made pasta if you are so inclined can be the foundation. Frozen, canned or fresh veggies, or even dried veggies for crunch provide the produce punch. Marinara from your homegrown tomatoes, or a tetrapak carton or jar sauce up your plate. Canned beans add the produce and the protein but can also provide the creaminess when pureed and added to mac and cheese.

Looking to ramp up the veggies? Consider a mix of pasta and veggie noodles. And with most pasta dishes you can make a little or a lot, so if you love the idea of make once eat twice, pasta and produce is quite nice.

And the beauty of this type of meal is that it can be so easy. Boil water, add pasta of choice. Cook and drain. Top with a spaghetti sauce and add in frozen or canned veggies and protein and you are done! A meal in minutes with affordable and available ingredients.


Pasta can be part of any plate. But it doesn’t have to be the sole occupant. Wanting to fill up, but keep pasta portions in check? How about a minestrone or pasta e fagioli where liquid is the primary ingredient? You get the volume and fill factor with fewer calories. Going veggie heavy on your pasta also ups the nutrient density at a lower calorie cost. And certainly, adding protein to your pasta helps you to feel fuller for longer. How about pasta with edamame and a peanut sauce, or greens and beans over rotini.


Pasta and produce are like old friends, familiar and always work well together.

For the produce-reluctant one in your family, pasta can be a great way to add more veggies.  Chopped or pureed veggies added to a sauce, leftover roasted veggies in a pasta salad, pureed cannellini beans to mac and cheese, pesto made with spinach, veggie lasagna, noodle kugel with cottage cheese and prunes, or a pasta, yogurt, pineapple and orange salad are all delicious and nutritious ways to excite and delight. For the plant based, picky palates, budget conscious, health conscious and foodies, pasta and produce are the perfect way to increase fruits and veggies every day. #haveaplant #sharethepasta