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Sweet Potato “Cookies”

January 5, 2017 No comments yet

After the influx of not so healthy holiday cookies, we needed a healthier grab and go option! The concept and shape of a cookie is just so convenient for little hands…no muffin papers to peel, fits easily in their hands and mouth, plus is often less crumbly than a muffin can be.

My criteria for what we call “anytime” cookies have to include fibre, protein and ideally a hidden fruit/veggie. Enter the batch of cooked sweet potato from this week’s meal prep. This is what we came up with….needless to say my taste testers devoured them! (Disclaimer: this is my first batch with this recipe…so I haven’t tested different flour options or freezing them yet! Stay tuned.)

Sweet Potato "Anytime Cookies"
Serves 24
A soft and fluffy cookie packed with sweet potato!
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Prep Time
10 min
Prep Time
10 min
123 calories
16 g
16 g
5 g
4 g
1 g
31 g
107 g
2 g
0 g
4 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
31g
Servings
24
Amount Per Serving
Calories 123
Calories from Fat 44
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 5g
8%
Saturated Fat 1g
4%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 2g
Cholesterol 16mg
5%
Sodium 107mg
4%
Total Carbohydrates 16g
5%
Dietary Fiber 2g
9%
Sugars 2g
Protein 4g
Vitamin A
0%
Vitamin C
8%
Calcium
2%
Iron
3%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1.5 cup sweet potato, cooked & mashed
  2. 3/4 cup peanut butter (or other nut/seed butter)
  3. 2 eggs
  4. 1 tsp vanilla
  5. 2-3 tbsp maple syrup
  6. 1 tsp baking soda
  7. 1 tsp cinnamon
  8. 1/4 cup ground flax
  9. 1/2 cup whole wheat flour (or oat flour for gluten free)
Instructions
  1. Combine sweet potato, PB, eggs, vanilla and maple syrup in bowl or blender.
  2. Mix until smooth.
  3. Stir in cinnamon, baking soda and flour.
  4. Mix until well combined.
  5. Drop by the heaping tablespoon onto a baking sheet lined with parchment.
  6. Top with chocolate chips, pumpkin seeds and/or raisins.
  7. Bake at 375F for 10-12min.
Notes
  1. Cool on wire rack. Store in air-tight container. Enjoy!
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calories
123
fat
5g
protein
4g
carbs
16g
more
Bent Fork Nutrition http://bentforknutrition.com/site/

White Bean Alfredo Sauce

December 13, 2016 No comments yet

I have been feeling less than inspired lately with our family meals. Between work, two kids and the Holiday season upon us, our meal rotation was just that…a rotation! Totally not a bad thing, but was leaving this foodie dietitian mom, uninspired. 

Keeping things simple is a fabulous way to make healthier choices work, while being busy! It simplifies grocery shopping, quickly answers the “what’s for supper” question and generally keeps everyone at the table happy. After a few too many weeks of pasta, fish, tacos/quesadillas, chicken and a pizza night…Momma needed some new flavors!

Riddle me this…one child that will eat anything (the littlest little), one child that doesn’t like anything mixed (the biggest little), one spouse that enjoys meat and a mama that prefers veggie protein based meals! Oh and there is the dog…she is the least picky of all! Ha!

Enter the experiment of a white bean alfredo sauce. Pasta is always a hit and we have had great success with the Sneaky Lentil Sauce, so I figured it was time to modify a cheesy white sauce and amp up the protein/fibre while I was at it. First experiment was a hit! Gobbled by everyone…a few things can still be tweaked….but it’s worth a quick post!

White Bean Alfredo Sauce
Serves 4
Keep the cheesy flavour while bumping up the protein and fibre in this delicious Alfredo pasta sauce!
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
20 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
20 min
224 calories
14 g
38 g
13 g
13 g
8 g
268 g
552 g
7 g
0 g
5 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
268g
Servings
4
Amount Per Serving
Calories 224
Calories from Fat 117
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 13g
20%
Saturated Fat 8g
41%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 4g
Cholesterol 38mg
13%
Sodium 552mg
23%
Total Carbohydrates 14g
5%
Dietary Fiber 0g
1%
Sugars 7g
Protein 13g
Vitamin A
56%
Vitamin C
111%
Calcium
41%
Iron
5%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 can white beans, drained & rinsed
  2. 0.5-1 cup low sodium chicken stock (or vegetable)
  3. 2tbsp butter
  4. 1 clove garlic, minced
  5. 2tbsp flour
  6. 2 cups milk or milk alternative
  7. 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
  8. pepper to taste
  9. 4 cups broccoli florets, fresh or frozen
Instructions
  1. 1. In a blender or food processor, combine drained white beans and chicken stock. Blend until smooth.
  2. 2. In large saute pan, add butter over medium heat. Add garlic and saute until fragrant.
  3. 3. Whisk in flour.
  4. 4. Whisk in bean/stock mixture. Whisk until smooth. Gradually whisk in milk and parmesan cheese.
  5. 5. Add broccoli, simmer until tender.
Notes
  1. Add more or less stock to the white beans, as needed, to reach a smooth consistency.
  2. If sauce becomes too thick, thin with additional milk.
  3. Serve over whole wheat penne or zucchini noodles.
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calories
224
fat
13g
protein
13g
carbs
14g
more
Bent Fork Nutrition http://bentforknutrition.com/site/
 

We’ve got RECIPES!!!

December 5, 2016 No comments yet

This makes me SO happy! Thanks to the ever famous “Uncle Gigi” (as our kid team here at Bent Fork Nutrition refers to him)….we have a REAL recipe tool for you all! 

This sauce is literally a game changer in our family! In fact, it’s preferred now to any “meat sauce” I used to make! Red lentils are powerhouses in nutrition- full of fibre and protein, not to mention easy on the budget! My kiddos don’t love “chunks,” so a quick puree with the immersion blender at the end, results in a nice smooth sauce! (Please note: the lentils can make this sauce very thick…I often add a little water each time I reheat a batch of frozen sauce.) 

Take the servings as an estimate….pending what is in my fridge to use up, this sauce can grow/shrink with each batch! It makes enough to freeze and store in smaller batches, perfect for those quick weeknight suppers!

Stay tuned while I load up all of my favorite family recipes!!!

 

Sneaky Lentil Sauce
Serves 12
A smooth and delicious pasta sauce that you can feel good about! Jam packed full of high fibre & high protein red lentils, plus more veggies then anyone will ever guess!
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
30 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
30 min
112 calories
19 g
0 g
2 g
6 g
0 g
130 g
58 g
4 g
0 g
2 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
130g
Servings
12
Amount Per Serving
Calories 112
Calories from Fat 20
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 2g
4%
Saturated Fat 0g
1%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 58mg
2%
Total Carbohydrates 19g
6%
Dietary Fiber 4g
17%
Sugars 4g
Protein 6g
Vitamin A
32%
Vitamin C
17%
Calcium
4%
Iron
13%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 bag frozen vegetables, Spaghetti mix (Arctic Gardens) OR 4 cups diced veggies
  2. 1 zucchini, diced
  3. 1 cup mushrooms, diced
  4. 1tbsp vegetable oil
  5. 1 clove garlic, minced
  6. 2tsp chili powder
  7. 1tsp oregano
  8. Pinch salt/pepper
  9. 1tbsp brown sugar (optional)
  10. 1 can diced tomatoes (no salt added)
  11. 1 can tomato paste
  12. 1 cup red lentils + 2 cups water
  13. 2tbsp chia seeds
Instructions
  1. Heat oil and garlic in a large saucepan. Add frozen (or fresh) vegetables and cook until tender.
  2. Stir in spices of choice (i.e. chili, oregano, basil, cayenne) and stir until fragrant.
  3. Stir in diced tomatoes, tomato paste and red lentils (plus water).
  4. Bring to a simmer for about 20min or until tender. Using a hand immersion blender, puree sauce in pot until smooth.
  5. Stir in chia seeds, to thicken.
Notes
  1. Serve over zucchini noodles, whole wheat pasta or spaghetti squash!
  2. Delicious layered in lasagna too!
  3. Top with Parmesan cheese!
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calories
112
fat
2g
protein
6g
carbs
19g
more
Bent Fork Nutrition http://bentforknutrition.com/site/

New Cookbook Alert!

August 12, 2016 No comments yet

I love me a new cookbook! Add to that it’s written by a fellow Dietitian AND a friend AND we share a name…pretty spectacular combination if I do say so myself!

Enter “World Food for Student Cooks: Healthy, delicious, easy-to-make dishes for the food-truck-loving, noodle-slurping, taco-crunching, mac-n-cheese-loving student.” This cookbook is full of healthy, tasty and budget friendly recipes that are targeted at those with basic entry level cooking skills. Student or non-student alike, your bellies will be happy!

Now this little geIMG_4570m of a cookbook isn’t out in the bookstores yet; however, you can pre-order it HERE. We have had the special opportunity to preview and test a few of the recipes…yum!

The kid’s team at Bent Fork Nutrition had first choice of the recipes…Best Banana Muffins for the win!

 

 

Ingredients:

  •  3 fresh or frozen bananas (thawed)
  •  1 eggIMG_4615
  •  1/2 cup nonfat plain yogurt
  •  1/4 cup honey
  •  1tbsp vanilla extract
  •  1 cup whole wheat flour
  •  1/4 cup ground flaxseed
  •  1tsp baking soda
  •  1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips (optional)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Coat 12 cup muffin tin with cooking spray or paper liners. Set aside.
  2. In food processor or blender, puree bananas, yogurt, honey and vanilla until blended and smooth. In a bowl, whisk flour, flaxseed, baking soda and cinnamon.
  3. Stir in banana mixture, just until combined. Fold in chocolate chips.
  4.  Evenly divide batter among muffin cups.
  5. Bake in oven until puffed and centers spring back when gently pressed, about 20min.

It’s been too long!

July 27, 2016 No comments yet

Wow…has a lot changed!

This blog has been pushed aside as life of a busy, working mom of two (!!!), has taken over. If you haven’t already found us on Social Media…follow us here, here and here! Daily eats, new recipes, favorite finds, cute babies and more!

IMG_3381

 

 

A few housekeeping notes:

- My maternity leave is almost wrapped up. Regular access and programming will resume in September 2016. I appreciate your patience and understanding, while I’ve enjoyed the time off with my family!

- If you have called/emailed over the past year and it got lost in my inbox…I apologize. Please do not hesitate to reach out again!

- Stay tuned for more regular posts! New recipes, kid friendly eats and more!

 

 

Sugar Smart Recipes!

October 30, 2013 No comments yet

Fuel up First!

Choco-PB-Banana Smoothie

Seriously, three of my favorite things,  blended into one delicious glass. The combo of fibre (banana) and protein (milk & pb) keep us full and satisfied! The chocolate milk (sugar reduced version by DairyOh!) makes us feel like we are having a treat! Not to mention has some extra goodness snuck in there with the naturally occurring DHA in the milk (cool eh?) plus the 16 essential nutrients found in milk!

Ingredients:

  • Frozen banana (sliced in chunks)pb smoothie
  • 1 cup DairyOh! Chocolate Milk
  • 1tbsp Peanut Butter

Directions:

Combine all ingredients into blender, blend until smooth, enjoy!

Nutrition Analysis:

350cal, 10g fat, 13.1g protein, 4.5g fibre

 

Pumpkin Pie Smoothie

Fun & perfect for the pumpkin season. Make sure you use pure pumpkin and not the pumpkin pie filling (loaded with added sugar). I like extra spice, so feel free to adjust the pumpkin pie seasoning ratio! Don’t have pumpkin pie spice, use cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and or cloves!

 Ingredients:

pumpkin

  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 frozen banana
  • 1-2 cups DairyOh! Milk (skim or 1%)
  • 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1-2tsp honey (optional)

 

 

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in blender, pulse until smooth. Add additional milk until desired consistency is reached.

Nutrition Analysis Per Smoothie (Serves  2):

145cal, 2.7g fat,  60mg sodium,4.6g fibre, 6g protein

This Halloween…Be Sugar Smart!

October 30, 2013 No comments yet

Halloween-CandyIt’s here…the holiday that starts the sugar rush and leads us (it seems) right through into the New Year!

Now, I’m all for moderation and certainly do enjoy the occasional treat…but some of the Halloween treats that exist just seem plain ol’wrong. Electric green in color, stain your teeth black, rolled in sugar, stick to your teeth, ingredient lists of just sugar, or even worse, ingredient lists full of words we can’t pronounce! I don’t want these things going in my body, let alone that of my kiddo!

(Thankfully, at 14 months, she still doesn’t really get this Holiday! Save  that battle for another year!)

Let’s talk strategy:

1. Offer Halloween Alternatives- Who says we need to trick-or-treat for candy? What about mini Play-Doh? Spider rings? Pencils? Bouncy Balls? Stickers? Want to stick with food- how about 100% fruit packs?

2. Discuss It- As a family, talk about how much candy is reasonable to eat? When? Where? Be open and be ready to negotiate and maybe even bargain. Perhaps the deal is a few treats can be eaten after supper at the table vs. eating mindlessly in front of the TV! Use it as a learning opportunity around healthy eating and what it means to you, your family and the kids! Giving everyone a little ownership on the situation means you don’t have to be the candy cop!

2. Fuel up First- Fill up with a healthy supper before trick-or-treating! A balanced meal will keep the lil’goblins satisfied and will help cut back on the “re-fueling” with candy!

3. Sort it- Have the kids sort the candy into things they love, dislike and only kind of like. Trash the dislike, give away the maybes and keep the love! Don’t want to trash it? Set up “shop” and buy back the Halloween treats from the kids! The kids can “sell” their Halloween treats back for cold, hard $$$ or actual items (i.e. 4 chocolate bars = $1 OR 4 chocolate bars = sticker book).

4. Out of Sight…Out of Mind- Package up the remaining candy into appropriate snack-sized portions.  Stick it away in the cupboard and portion it out accordingly.

5. Have Fun- Eating healthy doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy Halloween. Practice moderation, choose to indulge in the treats you actually enjoy and enjoy them!

Have a Happy & Healthy Halloween!!!

Afternoon with a chef…for an even better cause!

October 29, 2013 No comments yet

photoLet’s talk food. Not nutrition…but food.  The impact of food, the social aspects of food, the relationships and ways we celebrate using food, the bonding and sharing of stories over food…you get my point!?

Then let’s combine these experiences with a community…your community. Picture a shared centre, in the heart of your community where people can unite over food- the planning, the preparation, the eating and sharing of food. Partner that with resources to provide the skills, education and confidence for people to then take this food experience back to their own families, friends and homes.

Sounds amazing right? It is. Well it will be…Dartmouth will be the newest home to our very own Community Food Centre. Modelled off of The Stop Community Food Centre in Toronto and as an initiative of the Community Food Centres Canada, the CFC will be a  space where people can come together to grow, cook, share and advocate for good food. All programs will be free and open to anyone in the community who is interested in sharing a good meal, joining a cooking group, growing a garden, learning about healthy eating and getting active on issues in their community.

I was lucky enough to have been invited to a spend an afternoon in the temporary CFC home at the Dartmouth North Community Centre with the CFC Team, Chef Lynn Crawford and the people from IOGO! We learned, we cooked, we shared our food, just as participants in the CFC would experience.

Not only was the afternoon a blast, I left with new recipes, new friends and a renewed energy to step up to the plate and be a more active member of our community.

PS- I’m part way through this book…great read…greater story.

 

A few of my favorite things!

October 9, 2013 No comments yet

Just thought I’d share a few things I have extra love for right now!

Mel’s Kitchen Cafe! I’m pretty sure I am slowly eating my way through her website. Seriously…great inspiration, recipes and “Do it yourself” guidelines!

- This chocolate milk! I have a chocolate tooth at the best of times and not only is this a sugar-reduced version, it naturally contains DHA! How cool!?!

- This app! I’m a newbie with my iPhone; however, upon first few uses, this is a pretty cool app. I can enter in my meals for the week and/or upload from a few recipe websites, and it AUTOMATICALLY generates a grocery list. Yes please!

- This granola…mmm…available at Costco and meets my single digit sugar & more than 4g fibre guidelines!

- Loving this plant-based resource…again amazing recipe inspiration.

- Eat local!!!

What is on your current fav thing list?!?!

Fall is here = Apples!

October 4, 2013 No comments yet

The air has changed! With that brings the return of our fall favorites! In Nova Scotia, apples (especially from the Valley) are a delicious and healthy treat!

After a morning at Noggin’s Farm, it was time to find some new apple recipes!

Apple Salsaapples

  • 2 cups apples, diced and peeled (peeled is optional)
  • 1 red pepper, diced
  • 1/4 cup red onion, finely diced (optional)
  • 1/3 cup fresh lime juice
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • pinch of salt and pepper to taste
  • jalapeno pepper, seeded and diced (optional)

Combine all ingredients & refrigerate until serving.

Use topped over grilled chicken or pork, or enjoy with toasted pita chips! I’ve dumped  it on top of my salad- was a delicious crunch with a kick! The sky is the limit for this fresh twist on a fruit salsa!


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