Category Archives: recipes

Food Hero’s Gardening Challenge helps kids grow with dairy and plants

Join ODNC and Food Hero with Food Hero’s Grow This! Oregon Garden Challenge this spring. 38,000 free seed packets, donated by Bi-Mart, will be distributed by Food Hero to Oregon state residents as part of the program which aims to inspire kids to grow their own gardens and eat a healthy diet.

You can register to pick up a seed kit with Food Hero while supplies last. The seed packets will be available in 4 different seed kits: cool-weather vegetables, warm-weather vegetables, herb or edible flowers and flowers that attract pollinators, like bees and birds. Or you can join in with your own seeds, says Halie Cousineau, OSU Extension Food Hero state garden education coordinator.

The Food Hero Facebook page will hold weekly office hours when gardeners can ask questions, post photos and share their accomplishments, Cousineau said. Once they harvest their produce, gardeners can find more than 300 recipes using vegetables and fruits on the Food Hero website.

Children are a big part of the program. Beginning April 1, digital lessons will be released every Thursday through June 10 when school ends. The lineup includes Growing Healthy Kids with OSU Master Gardeners and a four-week lesson plan in partnership with the Oregon Bee Project. Kids will learn about how bees help make healthy food and how to identify several of Oregon’s bees.

Kids can upcycle their yogurt or milk containers and use sleeves provided by ODNC to help track the care and progress of their plants. Download yours here!

Throughout summer and into fall, participants will receive a monthly Grow This! Oregon Garden Challenge email with gardening information, harvest recipes and storage tips. Challenge information will also be available in English and Spanish on the Food Hero gardening page. For more personalized interaction, participants can email challenge leaders or email or call the Master Gardeners in their area.

“We’re trying to make the program accessible to anyone, children, elders, people with special needs and the diversity of cultural populations in Oregon,” said Cousineau. “We’re encouraging people anywhere to join. We want to make a community.”

Hack Your Pizza With These Quick Tips

On #NationalPizzaDay, take your pizza to the next level with these quick hacks that are sure to spice up your pie, no matter if it comes from a box or straight from your own oven!

Stay Cheesy

Sure, you can always add more cheese to take it to the next level, but you might be surprised how trying different types of cheese can improve an otherwise boring pizza. While some scientists claim that mozzarella and cheddar are the best mix, there’s also provolone, Gouda, Colby, Edam, Asiago, Gruyère, Emmental, bleu, ricotta, burrata – and, of course, Parmesan.  And don’t forget to try local cheeses from your local creamery!  Check out Oregon Cheese Guild to find a cheesemaker near you.

Vegging Out

You can feel good about kicking back and binge watching your favorite show when you add seriously delicious veggies to your pie. Beyond popular favorites like garlic, peppers, onions, olives and mushrooms- have you tried zucchini, corn, cauliflower, kale, quinoa, squash, broccoli or spinach? 

Pizza for Breakfast

There’s a reason that pizza is the breakfast of champions for college students.  Complement your pie with a tasty egg for added protein that will give you a boost at your next class or zoom meeting.

Take a Dip

They say that the secret’s in the sauce. Rev up your pie by drizzling ranch dressing, pesto, BBQ, buffalo or hummus on top.

Some even dip their pizza in milk!  We’re not making this up … it’s a thing.

Spice Is Nice

For those who like their pizza hot and spicy, you don’t have to settle for that packet of dried red peppers. There’s Tabasco, Sriracha, Cholula – and if that’s not enough, you can add peppers ranging from hot to “where’s-the-milk?!”

Crispy Crusts

Promote your small time pizza to the big leagues by cooking it on a pizza stone or in your air fryer – you’ll never go back!  Cooking tools like these give you an incredibly crisp crust while melting the cheese perfectly.  Brushing a thin layer of olive oil on a cast-iron skillet will also give you a crispy crust in no time.  Don’t forget to rub the crust with olive oil or melted butter before baking. You can also mix garlic powder, onion powder, crushed garlic, oregano, or some grated parmesan cheese into the dough to add a seasoned and flavorful boost to any pre-made pizza.

Rock and Roll Your Dough

Play with your food and switch up the shape of your pizza dough to make crescents, pinwheels, rolls, dippers and puffs.  

You can also ditch the dough completely and use French or artisanal bread. Or use wonton wrappers to create the perfect package for your cheese and toppings!

Just Desserts

Don’t forget about the sweet stuff!  Break away from  pineapple and make a dessert pizza with fruits like peaches, pears, apples, bananas and figs.  Drizzle chocolate or caramel sauce on top for a sweet treat.

Walk on the Wild Side

Want to try something really different? Try adding some new combos like peaches and prosciutto, blackberries and basil, even shrimp and lobster. There’s plenty of inspiration online … alongside pizzas with Flamin’ Hot Cheetos, spaghetti and ramen noodles!

Win Round Two

Don’t let leftovers hold you back from pie-in-the-sky creativity. Put a pizza upside down on another pizza with cheese in the middle and – Voila! Pizza grilled cheese! Or go a stack higher for pizza lasagna. Roll a mozzarella stick inside slices or cut strips of ‘pizza fries.’ Kids like slices cooked on a stick like a Popsicle or heated in a waffle iron.

When reheating slices, the oven is your friend. Preheat to 375 degrees and put it on a hot baking tray, cookie sheet or foil for 10 minutes. When using the microwave – just place a cup of water next to the pizza when you cook it to keep the crust from getting rubbery.

Hopefully these pizza hacks will help you elevate your next pie from disappointing to delectable. If you’re still not impressed, try getting the ingredients to make your own pizza the next time you’re at the grocery store and try your hand at making something from scratch. Grazie!

RELATED LINKS:

NINE EASY WAYS TO HACK YOUR PIZZA

DOMINO’S AND DAIRY: A PARTNERSHIP POWERED BY PIZZA

6 WAYS CHEESE CAN HELP YOUR BODY

Be a Food Hero: Cooking With Kids (VIDEO)

Do you have a picky eater at home? It’s always a challenge to get kids to eat healthy, but studies have shown that if you involve your child in the meal prep, they are more likely to eat what they prepare. Plus it gives them something productive and fun to do during times while they are homebound.

In this video, Juliauna (age 5) makes Zucchini Pizza Boats with just a little help from her mom. And, at minute 2:31 you can see how much she loved what she made.

FoodHero.org is a fantastic website where you will find kid-approved, budget-friendly and healthy recipes. Plus you will also find meal ideas and shopping tips. Funded by Oregon SNAP-Ed (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education), they help Oregonians improve their health by increasing their consumption of nutritious foods.

Their website makes it easy to search for recipes that incorporate foods you already have in your home with a section where you can search recipes by ingredients. While supervision by a parent or caretaker is necessary for cutting and cooking, many of the recipes are easy for kids to make with very little help or direction. They also have coloring pages to help your children learn about the ingredients they are using.

RELATED LINK:

Food Hero

Stay Home, Stay Safe, Stay Healthy

We will all remember the Spring of 2020 because of the stay at home restrictions put in place to help stop the spread of disease.   To make the most of the time, we offer you these tips to stay healthy while staying home.

Eat Well. Our bodies need the best fuel every day, and this is a great time to focus on healthy food choices.  Eating a balanced diet, which includes lean proteins, fruits, vegetables, dairy and whole grains, can help keep you healthy. And, it’s easy! Use the USDA’s MyPlate app as your guide.  Think about food groups when planning meals and snacks.  Try for at least two food groups for a snack – fruit and cheese, for example – and at least three for a meal – whole grain pasta, tomato sauce with added vegetables, and lean ground beef.  Pour a glass of milk to round out the meal.

Drink plenty of fluids. Your body depends on fluids to survive, and most healthy people can stay well hydrated by drinking water and other fluids whenever they feel thirsty. Water is recommended, but when you want something different, consider drinks that won’t add unnecessary sugars to your diet, like milk. Milk not only tastes great, it also is an affordable, excellent source of 9 essential nutrients. And, did you know that three of the nutrients – vitamin A, vitamin D, and protein – are essential for a healthy immune function?

Get fresh air. While doctors don’t typically prescribe sitting on your porch to cure an ailment, they do say that stepping outside can help to impact both our physical and mental health.  Open a window, take a walk, or sit on your porch. “Taking a short break outdoors can leave you feeling refreshed and more energized to get back to your daily tasks,” says Dr. Jimmy Johannes, a pulmonologist at Long Beach Medical in this article. Plus, it’s easy to keep a safe “social distance” outdoors!

Keep moving. Just because the gyms are closed doesn’t mean you should stop your exercise routine. Use this time as an opportunity to try something new. Many gyms are offering online classes, and many at home programs are offering free trials. Who knows? Maybe now is the time to start training for your next 5k or marathon. It starts with the resolve to keep moving. Need to get started? The Department of Health and Human Services offers physical activity guidelines and practical ways to be active on their website.

Get plenty of sleep. Getting a good night of sleep not only helps you feel and think better, it can also help you manage stress. Start with a healthy evening routine.  Turn off the screens, including your phone, an hour before bed and pick up a good book, meditate, write, play music or find another relaxing activity that will settle your brain.  Being “stuck” at home does mean you have an opportunity to binge-watch your favorite television show, just consider that getting 7 to 9 hours of sleep will help you stay healthy.

Do something good. Times are stressful. People are uncertain, confused and cooped up. A great way to help manage your own stress is to take time each day to do something for someone else. Check on a neighbor, share a roll of TP, call a parent or grandparent, sew some masks for healthcare workers, or donate funds to your local food bank. While you are at it, thank a farmer for continuing to produce food for your family. Even doing something small for someone else will boost your mood- and theirs too!

Back-To-School Tasty Snack

Bring friends together with this cheesy dip.

Serves 5

healthy-recipeSide dish recipe

 

 

Dietitian’s Tip: A fun way to get calcium, protein and whole grains.

 

INGREDIENTS
2.5 oz. cream cheese
6.5 oz. cheese, cheddar, yellow, reduced fat, shredded
1/3 cup yogurt, low-fat, plain
2 Tablespoons milk, 1% low-fat
20 crackers, whole grain, low-salt

 

INSTRUCTIONS
Place cream cheese and cheddar cheese in a food processor and blend until smooth.

Add yogurt and milk. Puree again until smooth.

Transfer dip to a serving bowl.

Serve with whole grain crackers.

Refrigerate leftovers.

 

NUTRITIONAL FACTS

Calories: 216, Total Fat: 12.40 g, Saturated Fat: 6.75 g, Cholesterol: 30.64 mg, Sodium: 360.65 mg, Calcium: 378.88 mg, Protein: 13.57 g, Carbohydrates: 13.43 g, Dietary Fiber: 1.68 g

Pie for Breakfast? Yes please!

Start your 4th of July off right with this tasty red, white, and blue fruit, yogurt, and cereal pie.

Serves 10

healthy-recipeDessert recipeentree-recipe

 

 

Dietitian’s Tip: This Breakfast Greek Yogurt Pie will add dairy protein, healthy fruits, and whole grains to your day.

 

INGREDIENTS

5 cups bran flakes cereal
½ cup chopped walnuts
6 tablespoons unsalted melted butter
4 tablespoons honey
6 (5.3 oz.) cups of plain, nonfat Greek yogurt
2 ½ cups fresh fruit (sliced strawberries, blueberries, raspberries or pomegranate seeds)

 

INSTRUCTIONS

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Add cereal and nuts to food processor bowl and pulse about 10 times until combined.

Transfer cereal and nuts to large bowl. Drizzle with the honey and melted butter.

Mix well and press into 9 inch pie pan.

Place pie pan in the oven and bake about 8 minutes until just starting to brown.

Transfer to wire rack and cool. Shell can be made 1-2 days in advance if desired.

When ready to serve, fill with yogurt and top with strawberries and blueberries.

 

NUTRITIONAL FACTS

Per serving: 250 calories, 12 g total fat, 5 g saturated fat, 29 g carbohydrate, 12 g protein, 4 g fiber, 174 mg sodium, 296 mg potassium, 50 mg magnesium, 121 mg calcium

 

Recipe courtesy of  Tillamook and Pacific Pie Company

Try A New Kind of Ice Cream Float

Have a relaxing “float” through summer with this idea for a treat with less sugar and calories. Of course you can always make it more indulgent by using your favorite soda flavor.

Serves 1

dash-recipehealthy-recipeDessert recipe

 

 

Dietitian’s Tip: These floats made with sparkling mineral water will contribute less sugar and calories to your diet than traditional floats.

 

INGREDIENTS

1 scoop (½ cup) vanilla ice cream
2 tablespoons of your favorite mashed berry or fruit
6 oz. sparkling mineral water

 

INSTRUCTIONS

Mash frozen or fresh fruit.

Add ice cream and fruit to glass.

Add sparkling water to glass.

Serve with a wide straw and a spoon.

 

NUTRITIONAL FACTS

147 calories, 7 g total fat, 5 g saturated fat, 18 g carbohydrate, 3 g protein, 1 g fiber, 91 mg sodium, 179 mg potassium, 15 mg magnesium, 98 mg calcium

Rumor has it the ice cream float was invented in 1874 when an entrepreneur ran out of ice for the flavored drinks he was selling and added ice cream. READ MORE

Pear Quesadillas

Food Hero has a wealth of easy to make, nutritious recipes to liven up your summer days. Here is an easy summer lunch idea for the kids … or yourself.

Serves 4

dash-recipehealthy-recipeentree-recipe

 

 

Dietitian’s Tip: This recipe is a great addition to a healthy diet serving up dairy protein, fruit, vegetables, and whole grains. Come up with your own combination using different fruits and vegetables.

 

INGREDIENTS

4 medium whole wheat tortillas
1 cup grated cheese (try cheddar, jack, or pepper jack)
1 cup pear slices (fresh or canned/drained)
½ cup finely chopped green or red peppers
2 tablespoons minced onion (green, red, or yellow)

 

INSTRUCTIONS

Lay two tortillas on two plates.

Divide the cheese between the two tortillas.

Divide the pears, peppers, and onion between the two tortillas.

Top with remaining two tortillas.

Heat a skillet or griddle to medium (300 degrees in an electric skillet). Place one quesadilla in pan. Cook 2-4 minutes, or until bottom of quesadilla begins to look a little brown.

With large spatula, gently turn the quesadilla over and cook the other side until a little brown, 2-4 minutes.

Gently slide quesadilla onto a plate. Cook the second quesadilla.

Cut each cooked quesadilla into 4 pieces and serve.

 

NUTRITIONAL FACTS

Per serving: 250 calories, 8 g total fat, 3.5 g saturated fat, 31 g carbohydrate, 11 g protein, 4 g dietary fiber, 400 mg sodium

Recipe courtesy of Food Hero

Caprese-Style Cottage Cheese Topper

Serve on toasted slices of Italian or French bread. A light, refreshing appetizer for your summertime parties.

Serves 6

dash-recipehealthy-recipeSide dish recipeentree-recipe

 

 

Dietitian’s Tip: A great way to get a boost of dairy protein with 11 grams of protein per serving.

 

INGREDIENTS

2 cups 2% fat cottage cheese
1 cup coarsely chopped fresh tomatoes
¼ cup chopped fresh basil
¼ cup toasted slivered almonds
5-6 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
½ teaspoon ground black pepper

 

INSTRUCTIONS

Coarsely chop the tomato.

Chop the fresh basil.

Mince the garlic cloves.

Toast the slivered almonds until lightly brown in a skillet over medium heat. Watch them carefully.

Combine all ingredients and blend well.

Serve on toasted bread of your choice.

 

NUTRITIONAL FACTS

Per serving: 115 calories, 6 g total fat, 1 g saturated fat, 6 g carbohydrate, 11 g protein, 2 g fiber, 317 mg sodium, 201 mg potassium, 29 mg magnesium, 108 mg calcium

 

Photo and adapted recipe courtesy of Darigold

Honey Lemon Panna Cotta

This Italian-inspired creamy dessert is the perfect end to any meal, and toppings are customizable to every season.

Serves 8

dash-recipehealthy-recipeDessert recipe

 

 

Dietitian’s Tip: Top with

  • Seasonal fresh fruit, such as berries or chopped peaches (frozen works, too.)
  • Mint leaves and canned mandarin orange segments

 

INGREDIENTS

2 cups 1% low-fat milk
1 cup low-fat buttermilk
2 packets unflavored gelatin
1 cup fat-free plain yogurt
1/3 cup mild honey
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon lemon zest

 

INSTRUCTIONS

Pour milk and buttermilk into a small saucepan. Sprinkle gelatin over the milk. Let sit for 1 to 2 minutes to soften.

Turn stove heat to low, heat milk and gelatin, stirring constantly to melt gelatin, about 6-8 minutes. Remove from heat.

In a large bowl, combine yogurt, honey, lemon juice, vanilla, and lemon zest. Pour in warm milk. Stir to combine and remove lumps. To make smooth, you can blend with an immersion blender or a blender.

Pour Panna Cotta into serving vessel – a large bowl, pie plate, or individual cups. Refrigerate until firm or overnight. The size of the container will impact this but it could be at least 4 hours.

Top with fruit such as blueberries, chopped strawberries, or cooked rhubarb.

 

NUTRITIONAL FACTS

Per serving: 98 calories, 1 g total fat, 1 g saturated fat, 19 g carbohydrate, 5 g protein, 0 g fiber, 107 mg sodium, 220 mg potassium, 16 mg magnesium, 169 mg calcium

Choose milk, buttermilk and plain yogurt in the fat level (fat-free, low fat, reduced-fat or whole) that best fits your personal health goals.

Recipe courtesy of Live Best

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