(Family Features) Busy mornings, afternoons and evenings are the norm for many families with days full of work, school, extracurricular activities, social commitments and more. Finding time to pause and share a meal is often a priority that may remain difficult to achieve.
With easy family-friendly recipes that call for Envy apples – named America’s No. 1 apple for taste, crispness, aroma and appearance, according to an independent sensory test by Forward Agency – you can bring your loved ones together for shared meals.
Crisp Apple Tacos put a fresh and sweet spin on a dinnertime classic by making tacos with pork medallions, homemade slaw and apple wedges. With plenty of easy prep work to be done, they’re a convenient way to call everyone to the kitchen; even little ones can help by mixing the dressing, apple sticks and cabbage for the tasty slaw.
For a quick and easy dinner option on busy summer nights, fire up the grill and cook Grilled Apple Portobello Burgers. Distinctly sweet apple rounds are paired with savory, umami-rich portobello mushrooms for a flavor-packed, meatless take on traditional burgers.
Easily recognized by their large, sharable size, Envy apples boast bright red skin that sometimes features a golden blush. They are ideal for snacking, with their satisfying crunch and balanced sweetness, and can also be served as part of any meal of the day. For example, Apple Avocado Toast provides a simple way to fuel up on weekday mornings or can be enjoyed as part of a weekend brunch with the family.
Find these delicious apples at a grocer near you by visiting EnvyApple.com.
Apple Avocado Toast
- 2 eggs
- 4 slices sourdough bread
- 1 ripe avocado, sliced
- 1 Envy apple
- 1 teaspoon lime juice
- 1/4 cup shaved Parmesan cheese
- 2 teaspoons chia seeds
- 1 tablespoon minced chives
- edible flowers, for garnish
- In pot, cover eggs with 1 inch cold water. Boil 6-7 minutes then place in cool water bath.
- Peel eggs, halve lengthwise and set aside.
- Toast sourdough bread then mash avocado across bread with fork.
- Cut apple into thin slices and place on top of avocado along with egg halves. Top with lime juice, Parmesan cheese, chia seeds and chives.
- Garnish with edible flowers.
Grilled Apple Portobello Burgers
- 2 Envy apples
- 4 portobello mushrooms
- 1/2 cup olive oil, divided
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 teaspoons oregano
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 cup herbed goat cheese
- 4 brioche buns
- 4 large butter lettuce leaves
- 4 tablespoons mayonnaise
- Heat grill to high heat.
- Slice apple horizontally into thick round wedges and remove seeds using fork.
- Remove portobello stems.
- In small bowl, combine 1/4 cup olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, oregano and salt. Using basting brush, coat mushrooms on both sides with olive oil mixture.
- Grill mushrooms stem sides down 2 minutes then flip. Add goat cheese and grill 2-3 minutes until cheese is melted.
- Coat apple rounds with remaining olive oil and grill 1-2 minutes per side to lightly char.
- Serve mushrooms with apple rounds on brioche buns with lettuce and mayonnaise.
Crisp Apple Tacos
- 1/2 pound pork tenderloin
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt, plus additional, to taste, divided
- 1 teaspoon pepper, plus additional, to taste, divided
- 2 Envy apples, divided
- 3 sprigs rosemary
- 1/2 cup shredded carrots
- 1/2 cup shredded red cabbage
- 1 cup shredded green cabbage
- 4 tablespoons honey
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon mustard
- 1 tablespoon white vinegar
- 12 soft taco shells
- 2 tablespoons sour cream
- 1 lime, cut into wedges
- Cut pork crosswise into 1-inch medallions.
- Coat pork medallions with olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon pepper then add to saucepan over medium heat.
- Slice half of one apple into thick wedges and add to saucepan. Slice remaining half into thin wedges and set aside.
- Add rosemary to saucepan and heat 2-3 minutes. Flip pork and heat 2-3 minutes until pork is slightly golden and cooked through.
- Let pork rest 3 minutes then slice into strips.
- Thinly slice half of remaining apple into thin sticks around same size of shredded cabbage. Reserve remaining half.
- In serving bowl, toss apple sticks, carrots, red cabbage and green cabbage.
- In bowl, mix honey, mayonnaise, mustard and vinegar into dressing. Add additional salt and pepper, to taste.
- Mix dressing and cabbage; refrigerate at least 1 hour prior to serving.
- Cut remaining apple half into thin wedges.
- Top taco shells with pork, slaw, sour cream and squeeze of lime juice. Top with apple wedges.
Source: Envy Apples
(Family Features) Committing to a daily wellness routine may include many components from eating healthy and exercising to meditating and achieving quality sleep. For some, the most difficult of these goals is changing eating habits to consume more nutritious foods.
However, rethinking the way you eat (and drink) doesn’t have to mean a colossal shift in your diet. According to Healthline, clean eating and the addition of a small amount of apple cider vinegar to your daily routine can help support healthy digestion, weight range maintenance, healthy glucose levels and a functioning immune system. In fact, some experts recommend consuming 1 ounce of apple cider vinegar each day as a shot or part of a recipe.
Consider an apple cider vinegar option from Marukan, which has brewed premium vinegars for 370 years, to create dishes from breakfast to dinner. Start your day by enjoying this Blueberry Apple Cider Vinegar Smoothie that takes just 5 minutes to make so it doesn’t throw off your morning routine.
A quick, nutritious and easy weeknight dinner is what many families strive for, and you can accomplish that feat with Apple Cider Vinegar Beef and Broccoli. Cooked broccoli florets and beef strips are combined with an apple cider vinegar and ponzu soy dressing-based sauce and served over cooked rice for a 20-minute meal your loved ones can savor together while simultaneously enhancing your nutrition.
These recipes can help you participate in the Marukan Apple Cider Vinegar 24-Day Challenge, which encourages entrants to consume 1 ounce of apple cider vinegar each day and share the benefits they experience while creating daily wellness habits on their journeys to healthier routines.
Find more information about participating in the challenge along with nutritious recipes at MarukanACV.com.
Blueberry Apple Cider Vinegar Smoothie
Total time: 5 minutes
- 1 cup spinach
- 1/2 cup water
- 2 tablespoons Marukan Organic Apple Cider & Rice Vinegar Drink Blend
- 1 tablespoon almond butter
- 1/2 cup bananas, frozen
- 1/2 cup blueberries, frozen
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, ground
- 1/4 teaspoon ginger, minced
- 1/2 cup almond milk yogurt, plain
- fresh blueberries, for garnish
- In blender, blend spinach, water, organic apple cider, almond butter, frozen bananas, frozen blueberries, chia seeds, cinnamon, ginger and yogurt until smooth. Pour into two glasses and garnish with fresh blueberries.
Apple Cider Vinegar Beef and Broccoli
Total time: 20 minutes
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 pound broccoli florets
- 1 pound beef strips
- 1 tablespoon garlic, minced
- 1/2 cup Marukan Ponzu Premium Soy Dressing with Sudachi Citrus
- 1/2 cup low-sodium beef broth
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1/4 cup honey
- 3 tablespoons Marukan Organic Apple Cider Vinegar
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- cooked rice
- sliced green onions, for garnish
- cilantro, for garnish
- sesame seeds, for garnish
- In skillet over medium heat, heat vegetable oil. Cook broccoli 3 minutes until slightly softened; set aside. Add beef to pan and cook 3 minutes until browned. Add garlic and cook 30 seconds until fragrant.
- In bowl, mix ponzu soy dressing, beef broth, sesame oil, brown sugar, honey, apple cider vinegar and cornstarch. Add sauce mixture to beef in skillet and cook 10 minutes until sauce mixture cooks down. Toss in broccoli and cook 2 minutes. Serve over rice and garnish with green onions, cilantro and sesame seeds.
Source: Marukan Apple Cider Vinegar
(Family Features) A whole-grain food, popcorn has energy-producing carbohydrates and fiber, which can help keep you satisfied longer when looking for an at-home snack to share with loved ones. With no artificial additives or preservatives, light and airy popcorn is naturally low in fat and calories, non-GMO and gluten free, making it a sensible option to enjoy one handful at a time or sprinkled with seasonings that satisfy your taste buds in a recipe like Coconut Crunch Chia Clusters.
For more snack ideas that deliver on both flavor and nutrition, visit popcorn.org.
Watch video to see how to make this recipe!
Coconut Crunch Chia Clusters
Yield: 8 cups
- 8 cups unsalted, unbuttered popped popcorn
- 2/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1/3 cup butter
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup coconut flakes
- 3 tablespoons chia seeds
- Preheat oven to 325° F. Line large, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Place popcorn in large mixing bowl.
- In small saucepan over medium heat, combine sugar, butter, honey and salt; bring to light boil, stirring often, until melted.
- Pour sugar mixture over popcorn. Add coconut flakes and chia seeds; toss gently to combine.
- Spread mixture on prepared baking sheet. Bake about 30 minutes, or until popcorn is lightly toasted. Let cool completely; break into clusters for serving.
Source: Popcorn Board
(Family Features) During a period when many families are spending more time at home than normal, eating healthier is likely a popular goal. One of the many aspects to focusing on better nutrition starts with a better breakfast.
To help boost you and your family’s immunity, try focusing on protein- and fiber-packed morning meals that are low in sugar. That doesn’t have to mean hours of prep in the kitchen or stocking up on uncommon ingredients.
Instead, you can start with simple recipes that call for just a handful of inclusions. Additionally, when your menu is centered around less complicated dishes, it allows an opportunity to get kids involved in the kitchen with tasks like measuring yogurt for a parfait, pouring milk in a pudding recipe or simply pulling ingredients out of the pantry and refrigerator.
To help start your healthy breakfast plan on the right foot, consider these tips from Dr. Jonathan Clinthorne and the experts at SimplyProtein:
Factor in fiber. When it comes to supporting immunity with nutrition, one of the underappreciated nutrients is dietary fiber. Fiber feeds gut bacteria, which helps produce numerous compounds that accelerate the development of immune cells and boost their function. The immune system performs better when people replace highly refined, low-fiber carbohydrates with fiber-rich carbohydrates.
Pick ingredients packed with protein. It’s important to consume adequate protein when looking to boost immune function as protein energy malnutrition is linked to poor immune function and can impair the ability of the immune system to fight viruses and bacteria. Add foods to your diet like SimplyProtein’s line of non-GMO, gluten-free bars and bites. The snacks include 11 or more grams of protein and just 0-3 grams of sugar without artificial sweeteners, artificial flavors or artificial preservatives for nutritious treats to help make busy lives simpler.
Build a balanced breakfast. People burn more energy through a process known as “diet-induced thermogenesis” when they consume high-calorie breakfasts rather than high-calorie dinners. This can ultimately help with weight loss and suggests that eating more food early in the day is better for you than eating a large amount before bedtime. For example, these recipes for Yogurt Parfait, Chia Seed Pudding and Avocado Toast provide protein and energy with simple at-home prep.
Skip the sugar. Avoid the post-lunch sleepy feeling by ditching sugar. Instead, focus on low-glycemic snacks that won’t spike blood sugar, helping to control your appetite.
Feel fuller longer. Eating immune supportive foods like vegetables, berries, nuts, seeds and protein-rich snack bars can help keep you full and satisfied while avoiding less nutritious alternatives.
Easy Additions for a Balanced Breakfast
Whether your morning meal is a lavish spread for the whole family or a simple snack before logging on for a workday, these simple add-ons can add flavor without sacrificing nutrition:
- Dairy, such as milk or yogurt
- Fruit, such as bananas, strawberries, blueberries, blackberries and more
- Quick solutions, such as SimplyProtein Cookie Bars, Crispy Bars or Crunchy Bites
- Eggs (for a time-saving solution, try using a muffin tin to create egg cups for ready-to-go breakfasts throughout the week)
- Seeds or nuts
- 2 slices whole-wheat bread
- 1 avocado, halved and sliced
- 2 poached eggs
- salt, to taste
- pepper, to taste
- 1/2 cup crushed SimplyProtein Barbecue Crunchy Bites
- Toast bread slices.
- Divide avocado slices among toast. Place one egg on each piece of toast then sprinkle with salt and pepper, to taste.
- Top toast with crushed crunchy bites.
- 1 cup Greek vanilla yogurt
- 1/2 cup assorted fruit, such as strawberries, blueberries and kiwi
- 1 tablespoon shaved almonds
- 1 SimplyProtein Chocolate Chip Cookie Bar, crumbled
- shaved coconut (optional)
- In bowl, layer yogurt, fruit and shaved almonds. Top with crumbled cookie bar and shaved coconut, if desired.
Chia Seed Pudding
- 3 teaspoons chia seeds
- 1 cup almond milk
- 1 SimplyProtein Lemon Crispy Bar
- In glass jar or bowl, stir chia seeds and almond milk. Let rest 5 minutes then stir again.
- Cover pudding in refrigerator; allow to set 1-2 hours or overnight.
- Crumble lemon crispy bar and mix into pudding or cut into sticks for dipping.
Resolve to make nutritious eating a priority
(Family Features) Discovering a better version of yourself is all about striking balance. That’s especially true when it comes to making smarter food choices that you can maintain over time.
A sustainable, long-term healthy eating approach, such as the Atkins low-carb lifestyle, emphasizes variety and balance. Start planning a low-carb menu filled with high-fiber carbohydrates, optimal protein and healthy fats with these tips from Colette Heimowitz, vice president of nutrition and education for Atkins.
Fill up with fiber-rich foods. Foods like vegetables, nuts, seeds, low-glycemic fruit (like berries) and whole unrefined grains are considered carbohydrates, but they don’t raise your blood sugar the way processed carbs do. Fiber slows the entry of glucose into your bloodstream so you don’t experience insulin spikes that encourage your body to produce and store body fat. Try to eat between 25-35 grams of fiber a day.
Reduce inflammation. A low-carb approach eliminates refined and processed foods and sugars that can cause inflammation. Focus on foods that decrease inflammation, such as colorful low-glycemic vegetables, low-sugar fruits, protein and healthy fats such as olive oil. The ground turmeric in this Golden Milk recipe offers an easy way to fight inflammation without sacrificing flavor.
Kickstart your morning. Start your day with a protein-packed choice such as these Chocolate Banana Protein Overnight Oats. You’ll get the omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants from the chia seeds along with protein and healthy fats to keep you energized while avoiding high-sugar breakfast alternatives.
Satisfying, Low-Sugar Swaps
Eating on the go can easily cause you to grab a high-sugar option, but there are simple swaps to keep your blood sugar levels steady throughout the day. Satisfy your hunger with an option like the Atkins Chocolate Peanut Butter Bar. Made with sweet chocolate and rich, creamy peanut butter, this bar offers 16 grams of protein, 12 grams of fiber and only 2 grams of sugar to satisfy your hunger without the guilt.
Find more recipes like these for Salmon and Asparagus Sheet Pan or Spicy Crispy Chickpeas and ideas for a balanced, low-carb approach to eating well at Atkins.com.
Salmon and Asparagus Sheet Pan
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Net carbs: 4.41
- 1 bunch thin spear asparagus
- 1 tablespoon, plus 1/4 teaspoon, extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/8 teaspoon salt, divided
- 2 salmon fillets (4 ounces each), no more than 3/4-inch thick
- 1 pinch black pepper
- 3 tablespoons olive oil-based mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1/4 teaspoon minced or pressed garlic
- 1 tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese
- Heat oven to 425° F.
- Wash asparagus and remove woody ends. Place on rimmed baking sheet and toss with 1 tablespoon olive oil and pinch of salt. Arrange in single layer, leaving space for salmon. Place salmon skin-side down on sheet. Brush with remaining olive oil and season with remaining salt and pepper. Place in oven and bake 12 minutes.
- In small bowl, combine mayonnaise, lemon juice, mustard and garlic.
- Remove sheet pan from oven, sprinkle asparagus spears with cheese and cook 3 minutes, or until fish reaches 145° F and asparagus spears are tender and beginning to brown on tips.
- Plate one fillet and half the asparagus, drizzle each plate with about 2 tablespoons mayonnaise sauce and serve.
Spicy Crispy Chickpeas
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Net carbs: 8.3
- 1 can (15 1/2 ounces) chickpeas
- 1 tablespoon ghee (or clarified butter), melted
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/4 teaspoon chipotle chili powder
- Heat air fryer to 390° F 3 minutes.
- Using fine mesh sieve, drain and rinse chickpeas. Use towel to gently pat chickpeas dry, removing skins. In small bowl, toss chickpeas with ghee and salt.
- Cook in single layer in air fryer 6 minutes. Pause and shake bowl; cook 6 minutes. Pause and shake bowl; cook 3 minutes.
- In separate small bowl, sprinkle chickpeas with spices and toss to evenly coat. Chickpeas can be stored in open container at room temperature up to 3 days.
Prep time: 8 minutes
Cook time: 7 minutes
Net carbs: 3
- 1 cup canned unsweetened coconut milk
- 1 cup plain unsweetened almond milk
- 1 cup water
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground turmeric
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 10 drops liquid stevia extract
- In small pan, whisk coconut milk, almond milk, water, coconut oil, turmeric, cinnamon, ginger and pepper. Warm over medium heat until hot but not simmering, about 7 minutes. Remove from heat, whisk in sweetener and serve.
Chocolate Banana Protein Overnight Oats
Prep time: 5 minutes
Chill time: 3 hours
Net carbs: 6.84
- 1 Atkins Chocolate Banana Shake
- 2 tablespoons rolled oats
- 2 tablespoons chia seeds
- 2 tablespoons hemp hearts
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened coconut shreds
- 2 tablespoons sliced almonds
- fruit, such as sliced bananas or berries (optional)
- In jar with tight-fitting lid, combine shake, rolled oats, chia seeds, hemp hearts, coconut and almonds. Cover and refrigerate at least 3 hours or overnight.
- Top with fruit, if desired.
Photos courtesy of Getty Images (Salmon and Asparagus Sheet Pan, Spicy Crispy Chickpeas, Golden Milk, Chocolate Banana Protein Overnight Oats)
(Family Features) For many people, the New Year brings the resolve to just say no to indulgent food and drink, to inactivity and to a host of other unhealthy habits.
However, you can also approach your reset with balance and positive thinking. This can be your year to say "yes" and rework the all-or-nothing mentality, which can be a more mindful way to reach your goals.
From eating with purpose to finding healthier options for tasty meals, making small changes can help you reap rewards throughout the year. Start 2018 with a clean slate of practical and attainable eating goals that are realistic for the life you want to lead by shopping at a grocery store like ALDI, a one-stop shop with a wide selection of high-quality, affordable food choices. Whether you follow a paleo, plant-based or organic eating plan, all of the following nutritious options can be incorporated into your lifestyle and budget for less than $20:
- SimplyNature Organic Coconut Oil: This trendy ingredient can elevate better-for-you recipes like this Cranberry Orange Chia Granola. You can also use it as a replacement for butter or vegetable oil because it's a versatile choice for both sweet and savory dishes.
- SimplyNature Chia Seeds: Use chia seeds to top your smoothie, overnight oats or make chia pudding in the morning for an easy way to power up the most important meal of the day. Chia seeds serve up protein, fiber and antioxidants.
- Earth Grown Black Bean or Veggie Burgers: If you follow a vegetarian or vegan diet, or just want to join the Meatless Monday movement, black bean burgers are one option to try.
- Earth Grown Vegan Shredded Cheese: This dairy-free cheese is a tasty addition to vegan recipes.
- SimplyNature Organic Popcorn: Movie nights call for popcorn, and this organic version can quickly become a family favorite. Each serving provides 3 grams of both fiber and protein.
Part of making healthy choices includes finding quick and easy recipes. Discover how easy it is to make fresh meals at home with this better-for-you recipe and find more options at aldi.us.
Cranberry Orange Chia Granola
Recipe courtesy of Chef Linsey, ALDI Test Kitchen
- 2 1/2 cups Millville Old Fashioned Oats
- 6 ounces Southern Grove Shelled Pistachios, chopped
- 1/4 cup SimplyNature Chia Seeds
- 5 ounces Southern Grove Dried Cranberries
- 1 tablespoon orange zest
- 3/4 cup SimplyNature Organic Wildflower Honey
- 3 tablespoons SimplyNature Organic Coconut Oil
- 1 teaspoon Stonemill Essentials Pure Vanilla
- 1/2 teaspoon Stonemill Essentials Ground Cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground Stonemill Essentials Sea Salt Grinder
- Heat oven to 325 F.
- In large bowl, combine oats, pistachios, chia seeds, cranberries and orange zest. Toss until orange zest is evenly distributed.
- In separate medium bowl, combine honey, coconut oil, vanilla, cinnamon and salt. Heat in microwave 1 minute; stir. Continue cooking in 30-second intervals until coconut oil is melted.
- Add honey mixture to oat mixture. Toss until thoroughly coated. Transfer to parchment- or foil-lined baking sheet. Spread into even layer and bake in center of oven 20 minutes. Stir and continue cooking until evenly browned, about 10-15 minutes.
- Remove from oven and cool to room temperature. Serve with yogurt or enjoy on its own.
Note: Granola can be stored in airtight container up to 3 weeks.
Try this healthy spin on a classic cookie treat. For more recipes go to culinary.net.
Watch video to see how to make this delicious recipe!
Gingerbread Cookie Shake
- 1 1/2 cups vanilla protein shake
- 1 tbsp. molasses
- 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp. ground ginger
- 1 frozen banana
- 1 tbsp. chia seeds
- 1/2 cup ice
- Add all ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth. Serve.