Nutritionist-Approved Healthy Winter Snacks!

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Whether it’s the cold weather stirring up your appetite or the comfort of munching on something when there’s not much else to do, wintertime seems to be prime time for snacking. But fear not! Snacking, if approached smartly, can be part of a healthy diet. The key is to think of snacking in a positive light, as a bridge to provide energy, satiety and nutrition between meals, rather than as an unhealthy treat to be snuck in when no one’s looking. After all, shivering does burn calories so we might as well replenish them with healthy snacks!

Take care of what your body needs and give some thought ahead of time to what you want to snack on, instead of waiting until you are hungry to raid the fridge or vending machine. Here are some tips from our Registered Dietitian Lea to help you keep healthy snacks on hand: Continue reading

New Dietary Guidelines: More Plants, Less Sugar, Coffee’s Cool

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Last week, the US Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee proposed new updated Dietary Guidelines to encourage Americans to eat healthier. Some of the new recommendations seem more obvious and in line with the most current thinking in the world of nutrition and health (e.g. eat less sugar), but some were more novel. An age-old villain in the world of nutrition, cholesterol, is being let off the hook, and the Committee introduced the idea of eating not only for our health but also for the health of the planet.

Lea Basch, Registered Dietitian for The Tasteful Pantry, wasn’t really surprised by the new guidelines: “We’ve already been very conscious about what goes into the snacks we offer. We don’t include anything in our boxes that is too high in sodium or refined sugar, and we won’t touch anything that contains trans fats with a 10-foot pole.” Continue reading

Chinese Tea Eggs for Lunar New Year!

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Today marks the beginning of the Chinese New Year, normally celebrated in Asian countries with family dinners, fireworks, paying respects to ancestors, and a month off work. This year is the Year of the Sheep, known for its gentleness, calmness and thoughtfulness. There are numerous foods that are eaten during the New Year that symbolize good luck and fortune, including sticky rice cake, steamed whole fish and dumplings, but we wanted to share one that is easy to make and great as a breakfast, snack or appetizer, plus it’s super healthy: Chinese Tea Eggs. We’ve adapted this recipe from Use Real Butter. There is a lot of soaking time involved (we recommend you start a day ahead), but that is really just to get the maximum flavor infused into your eggs. We hope you enjoy both the unique flavor and look of the eggs once they’re finished! Happy New Year!! Continue reading

Quick & Healthy Meals in Under 20 Minutes

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You know those days where you feel like just about everything is going wrong? You stepped in a puddle while walking to your car, work was so busy you didn’t even have time to eat lunch, and every machine was taken at the gym? Yeah, we know how you feel. We also know that on days like this, you just want to come home and eat a quick dinner and relax…and with technology you can order a pizza with just a few swipes on your phone. This is what we want to avoid!

There’s nothing that we regret more than a bad food choice that could have been completely avoided just by having the right tools – and those right tools are healthy ingredients with quick (and easy) recipes to follow that you will enjoy! Continue reading

Mindful Movement: Synchronizing Mind and Body

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Mindfulness is one of those words that seems to be everywhere these days, but how many people really know what it means? Many people associate mindfulness and meditation with sitting quietly for hours trying desperately to shut out the world and turn off thoughts and sensations. But that’s not necessarily what it’s all about, and on top of that, takes a whole lot of effort and struggle to accomplish something that seems counterintuitive to what it means to be a human being. What if we could use mindfulness to explore what it really means to be human, to be who we are in this very moment and not who we think we should be? What if, instead of trying desperately to shut out our sensations and experience, we could gently and lovingly pay attention to them and allow mindfulness to bring us down from our heads and into our whole being? Continue reading

Easy Guilt-Free Orange Cranberry Bon Bons (GF)

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With the big V-day coming up, yes we could impress our significant other by spending all day in the kitchen whipping up a romantic homemade dessert. If you want to do that, try our popular recipe for sacher torte. But if that’s not your thing, here’s a super easy recipe for chocolate-covered bon bons that blends together unique flavors, textures and temperatures, all good ways to show off your sophisticated palate and kitchen-saavy (how many people can say they’ve tempered chocolate?).

The word recipe might actually be a bit of an overstatement for this one. It’s more like instructions, and most of this is instructions on how to temper chocolate so you get a nice crisp chocolate coating rather than it being crumbly and soggy. The basis for the bon bon is one of our favorite additions to our shop and this month’s Low Carb Box: Orange Cranberry Almond Paleo Cookies from Sarah’s Skinny Sweets. Talk about guilt-free, these cookies are paleo-friendly, certified gluten-free, vegan and made from organic ingredients. And all you’re doing with the rest of the recipe is adding dark chocolate (yes, chocolate is a superfood). The only bit of prep you need to do is to freeze the cookies for a few hours or overnight before you make your bon bons. Enjoy! Continue reading

Gluten-Free Flour Alternatives

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Valentine’s Day is almost here, and we can feel the love in the air. There is a special aura around this day (whether you celebrate it or not) and we love to feel the love in our hearts AND in our stomachs. But instead of eating unhealthy desserts filled with gluten that will leave us bloated with a food baby, we’re looking into flour alternatives that still give a great taste and texture. Many gluten-free recipes may call for a blend of these flours, but here we’ll give you the (honest) down low on our opinions about each flour so you can understand the different components of your recipe. Read on! Continue reading

Gluten-Free High Protein Cheesecake

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Here at The Tasteful Pantry, we are huge fans of having our cake and eating it too…literally! For us that means eating delicious food that is also nutritious and doesn’t break the calorie bank! So that’s why we’re super excited to share the idea of a high protein cheesecake with you. Not only do the ingredients in this cheesecake give you a protein boost, but they also replace many of the high fat high calorie ingredients found in typical cheesecakes with cleaner, healthier versions that still give you a rich creamy consistency. We love this recipe from the Dashing Dish, which you can top with a fruit or topping of your choice.  Continue reading