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Metabolism-Boosting Recipes: Salads

Planning ahead to have a lunch that powers you through the day is easy with these simple recipes you can prep ahead of time and brown bag so that you keep your metabolism maximized throughout the day. With these recipes for satisfying salads, you’ll get a variety of flavor combinations to keep your midday routine interesting.

If you’re not pairing your salad with a whole-wheat pita, you should include a complex carbohydrate with the meal, such as cut-up fruit, beans, and plenty of veggies besides lettuce.

Strawberry Fields of Kale

Yield: 1 serving

4 cups kale

1 cup, halved strawberries

7 walnut halves

1 ounce avocado, cubed (about 1/5 medium avocado)

1 ounce Balsamic vinegar

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 packet stevia

  1. Mix together all dressing ingredients in a large bowl.

  2. Remove kale leaves from stems, wash, and break off small leaves. Add kale to the dressing bowl, mix, and massage with your hands thoroughly until leaves are covered.

  3. Add strawberries, walnuts, and avocado to the bowl and toss. Enjoy!

Per serving: Calories 280; Fat 10g; Saturated Fat 1g; Sodium 175mg; Carbohydrate 31g; Dietary Fiber 9g; Protein 13g.

Chinese Chicken Salad

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 25 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil

1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breasts (about 3 large breasts)

1 head Napa cabbage, thinly shredded

1 bunch scallions, trimmed and thinly sliced

1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted

1 large carrot, shredded

1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce

1/3 cup rice vinegar

1 teaspoon minced garlic

1 teaspoon minced ginger

2 tablespoons canola oil

2 tablespoons brown sugar

1-1/2 teaspoon chili sauce

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

  2. Brush sesame oil onto chicken breasts.

  3. Place chicken breasts on baking dish and bake for approximately 20–25 minutes. Once cooked, cut into 1/4 inch slices.

  4. 4In bowl, mix Napa cabbage, carrot, scallions, sliced chicken and almonds. Whisk together 1 tablespoon soy sauce, rice vinegar, garlic, ginger, oil, brown sugar and chili sauce for the dressing and add to the salad.

Per serving: Calories 317; Fat 15g; Saturated Fat 1.5g; Cholesterol 66mg; Sodium 475mg; Carbohydrate 12.5g; Dietary Fiber 3.5g; Protein 28g.

Turkey Taco Salad

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 10 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

2 tablespoons olive oil

3/4 pound lean ground white turkey meat

1 garlic clove, minced

1 tablespoon chili powder

1 cup cooked black beans

4 medium tomatoes, diced

2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 hearts romaine lettuce, chopped

1/2 cup low-fat cheddar cheese, shredded

  1. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in skillet over med-high heat.

  2. Add ground turkey, garlic, and chili powder until browned about 5–10 minutes. Remove from heat.

  3. In a large bowl mix black beans, tomatoes, 1 tablespoon olive oil, lime juice, and pepper.

  4. Mix tomato and lime juice mixture with lettuce, cheddar cheese, and cooked turkey meat. Olé!

Per serving: Calories 405; Fat 14g; Saturated Fat 4g; Cholesterol 65mg; Sodium 150mg; Carbohydrates 37g; Dietary Fiber 10g; Protein 30g

Quinoa Greek Salad

Prep time: 1 hour 15 minutes

Cook time: 20 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

2 tablespoon red wine vinegar

1/4 teaspoon dried oregano

1 clove garlic, minced

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 cup quinoa

1 medium red tomato, cubed

1 red onion, thinly sliced

1 cucumber, cubed

1/2 cup part-skim feta cheese, crumbled

1/2 cup kalamata olives

  1. Blend together lemon juice, vinegar, oregano, and garlic in a small bowl. Whisk in olive oil until emulsified.

  2. Heat quinoa in saucepan with 2 cups of water. Bring to boil and cook until quinoa has absorbed all the water, about 20 minutes.

  3. Mix quinoa with tomatoes, onion, cucumber, feta cheese, olives and dressing. Refrigerate for 1 hour.

Per serving: Calories 275; Fat 9g; Saturated Fat 1.5g; Cholesterol 5mg; Sodium 325mg; Carbohydrates 34g; Dietary Fiber 4.5g; Protein 10g.

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