Since Saint Patrick’s Day is one week away, here’s a quick and easy dip that is sure to be a party pleaser. This low-fat, low-calorie delight is perfect for spring. It’s filled with fresh dill and fresh basil. Guests won’t believe that this dip is low-fat, and don’t tell them it took only 10 minutes to prepare.


Low-Fat Fresh Herb Dip

Prep: 10 minutes

Yield: 31/2 cups


1 (16-ounce) container light sour cream

1 cup low-fat mayonnaise

2 cloves garlic

3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

3 tablespoons chopped fresh dill

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Fresh vegetables, crackers


1. Combine all ingredients in a container of a food processor; pulse until combine. Cover and chill. Serve with fresh vegetables or crackers.


Chicken Scaloppine over Broccoli Rabe from Cooking Light

I developed this recipe for Cooking Light a few years ago for their “20 minute meals” column. Using chicken cutlets saves a lot of cooking time. With only 318 calories and 7 grams of fat, this chicken and broccoli combination is light and flavorful. This recipe used broccoli rabe, which has 6- to 9-inch stalks and clusters of tiny broccoli-like buds. It can be found in the produce sections usually from fall through spring, but if you can’t find broccoli rabe, feel free to use regular broccoli.


Chicken Scaloppine

Prep: 10 minutes

Cook: 10 minutes

Yield: 4 servings 


1 tablespoon  olive oil

1/3  cup  Italian-seasoned breadcrumbs

1/4  teaspoon black pepper

4  (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast cutlets

1/2  cup  dry white wine

1/2  cup  fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth

3  tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 tablespoon butter

1  pound  broccoli rabe (rapini), cut into 3-inch pieces

2  tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

2  tablespoons capers, rinsed and drained

4  lemon slices (optional)


1. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.

2. Combine breadcrumbs and pepper in a shallow dish; dredge chicken in breadcrumb mixture. Add chicken to pan; cook 3 minutes on each side or until done. Remove from pan; keep warm.

3. Add wine, broth, juice, and butter to pan, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Stir in broccoli rabe; cover and cook 3 minutes or until broccoli rabe is tender. Stir in parsley and capers. Serve chicken over broccoli rabe mixture. Garnish with lemon slices, if desired.

Warm Fudge-Filled Cheesecake from Southern Living

Okay, yes, my birthday is today so deciding what to put up on the blog was tricky. I tried to think what are some of my favorite desserts? Coconut cake, carrot cake, chocolate cake and any peanut butter treats come to mind. I even thought, maybe a cupcake or a chocolate chip cookie, hmm. Well, after much debate, I remembered one of my all-time favorite cheesecake recipes from when I still worked at Southern Living. This version is awesome! The hint of pistachios makes it really special, and I’m a semisweet chocolate lover for sure. Enjoy this recipe for years to come for your celebrations.


Warm Chocolate Cheesecake

Prep: 25 minutes

Cook: 1 hour, 15 minutes

Yield: 12 servings


1/2  cup  butter or margarine, softened

1/3  cup  sugar

1  cup  all-purpose flour

1  tablespoon  vanilla, divided

2/3  cup  chopped pistachios

4  (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened

1 1/2  cups  sugar

4  large eggs

1  (12-ounce) package semisweet chocolate mini-morsels

Sweetened whipped cream (optional)

Garnish: chocolate shavings


1. Beat butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy; add 1/3 cup sugar, beating well. Gradually add flour, beating at low speed until blended. Stir in 1 teaspoon vanilla and pistachios. Press into bottom and 1 1/2 inches up sides of a 9-inch springform pan.

2. Bake at 350° for 12 to 15 minutes or until golden. Cool on a wire rack.

3. Beat cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until light and fluffy; gradually add 1 1/2 cups sugar, beating well. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until yellow disappears. Stir in remaining 2 teaspoons vanilla. (Do not overmix.)

3. Pour half of batter into crust; sprinkle with chocolate morsels to within 3/4 inch of edge. Pour in remaining batter, starting at outer edge and working toward center. Place cheesecake on a baking sheet.

5. Bake at 350° for 1 hour or until set. Cool on a wire rack 1 hour. Serve slightly warm with sweetened whipped cream, if desired. Garnish, if desired.


We love making muffins at my house, and this recipe is completely simple. With only 109 calories and 3.5 grams of fat per serving, you won’t feel guilty eating these muffins. The combination of rapspberry and almond go so well together, but for those of you who prefer blueberries, feel free to substitute blueberry preserves. 

Raspberry Almond Mini-Muffins

Prep: 20 minutes

Cook: 15 minutes

Yield: 24 muffins


2 cups all-purpose flour

2/3 cup sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 cup (1 stick) melted butter or margarine

2/3 cup milk

1 egg

3/4 teaspoon almond extract

1/4 cup raspberry preserves

Powdered sugar (optional)


1.  Preheat oven to 375°F. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and cinnamon in Classic Batter Bowl. Stir melted butter, milk, egg and almond extract into dry ingredients, mixing until well combined.

2.  Spray Deluxe Mini-Muffin Pan with nonstick cooking spray. Fill prepared muffin cups using Medium Scoop (1 scoop per muffin cup). Press approximately 1/2 teaspoon raspberry preserves into top of muffin batter. Gently fold batter over most of preserves.

3.  Bake 13 to 15 minutes or until light golden brown or Cake Tester inserted in center comes out clean. Let cool in pan 5 minutes. Carefully remove from pan; serve warm or at room temperature. Sprinkle with powdered sugar using Flour/Sugar Shaker, if desired.


Coming up with this recipe may seem simple to you because that’s what I thought when I submitted this recipe concept to a client for recipe development. Honestly, I made this recipe at least six times. I kept placing the strawberries in the blender and coming out with a fizzy product. It tasted great, but was very foamy and fizzy. The kids loved trying all the versions, but they even complained about all of the fizz. I realized that maybe I was making this too complicated trying create a lime simple syrup, different sugars, etc. until I realized why not just try chopping the strawberries in the food processor first and then stir them into simple limeade? This version worked great so I hope you will like it too.



Prep: 10 minutes

Yield: 6 to  8 cups


1 (16-oz.) container strawberries, stems removed

1 (12-oz) can frozen limeade concentrate, undiluted

5 cup cold water

Fresh strawberries, fresh mint (optional)


1. Combine strawberries in a container of a food processor; light pulse until smooth. Pour in a strainer to strain pulp. Combine limemade and water in a large pitcher and stir until limeade dissolves. Stir in strawberries; pour over ice and garnish with fresh strawberries and mint, if desired.


Using a rotisserie chicken is a life-saver for so many wonderful quick dinner recipes. I created this recipe since my 3 kids love Caesar Salads, and sometimes a delicious sandwich and a salad or side is all they want for dinner. The simple mixture of low-fat mayonnaise, garlic, fresh parsley, lemon juice and Parmesan create an incredibly flavorful spread for these sandwiches. In twenty minutes, dinner can be done, but this recipe is also great to serve for lunch on the weekends.


Caesar Salad Sandwiches

Prep: 20 minutes

 Yield: 4 servings


1/2 cup low-fat mayonnaise

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley

11/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon grated lemon rind

3/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

2 cups thinly sliced, cooked chicken (I used rotisserie chicken)

1 (16-ounce) loaf Ciabatta bread (or French or Italian bread)

Romaine lettuce leaves

Tomatoes, purple onion (optional)


1. Combine first 7 ingredients in a medium mixing bowl. Spread mayonnaise mixture evenly over cut sides of bread. Top evenly with chicken and lettuce; serve immediately. Top with tomatoes and purple onion, if desired.

Soba Noodle Salad with Citrus Vinaigrette from Cooking Light

The combination of soba noodles, edamame, ginger, carrots and fresh citrus juices creates this healthy and flavorful shrimp salad. If you don’t eat shrimp, feel free to add cooked, sliced chicken to this recipe. Don’t let the lengthy-looking ingredient list fool you, this recipe can be on the table in less than 30 minutes.


Healthy Shrimp Noodle Salad

Prep: 10 minutes

Cook: 15 minutes

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: about 2 cups)


1  (8-ounce) package soba noodles

1 1/4  cups frozen shelled edamame (green soybeans)

3/4  cup  matchstick-cut carrots

1/3  cup  sliced green onions

2  tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

1 1/2  teaspoons chopped jalapeno pepper (optional)

1  pound peeled and deveined medium shrimp

1/4  teaspoon kosher salt

1/4  teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

Cooking spray

2  tablespoons fresh orange juice

2  tablespoons  fresh lime juice

1  tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce

1  tablespoon dark sesame oil

1  tablespoon  olive oil

1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger


1. Cook noodles in boiling water 7 minutes or until almost al dente. Add soybeans to pan; cook 1 minute or until thoroughly heated. Drain. Place noodle mixture in a large bowl. Add carrots, onions, cilantro, and pepper, if desired; toss.

2. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Sprinkle shrimp with salt and red pepper. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add shrimp; cook 1 1/2 minutes on each side. Add shrimp to noodle mixture.

3. Combine orange juice and remaining ingredients in a bowl, stirring well with a whisk. Drizzle juice mixture over noodle mixture; toss well.