New year, new you? A healthy diet is a good start. So what’s the skinny on superfoods? Should you be eating more of them? Superfoods are foods packed with nutrients that are touted as having multiple health benefits and can possibly help you lose weight. But experts caution that some so-called superfoods are simply marketed that way by the companies who sell them. The main ingredients in these recipes below are common superfoods that have earned their seal of approval from the American Heart Association.
One Pan Roasted Lemon Pepper Salmon and Garlic Parmesan Asparagus
1 1/2 pounds salmon
2 1/2 tablespoon olive oil, divided
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
4 cloves garlic, minced, divided
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
3/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon each salt and fresh cracked black pepper , plus more for asparagus
1/2 lemon, thinly sliced (optional)
1 1/2 – 2 pounds asparagus (medium spears), tough ends trimmed
1/2 cup finely shredded parmesan
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a rimmed 17 by 12-inch baking sheet with parchment paper. Place salmon in center of pan.
2. In a mixing bowl whisk together 1 1/2 Tbsp olive oil, the lemon zest, lemon juice, 2 cloves garlic, dijon, onion powder. Brush evenly over top of salmon then sprinkle with 1/2 tsp salt and pepper (add more pepper to taste if desired). Top with lemon slices.
3. Toss asparagus with remaining 1 Tbsp olive oil, remaining 2 cloves garlic and season with salt, then place around salmon.
4. Bake in preheated oven 10 minutes.
5. Remove from oven, toss asparagus then sprinkle asparagus with parmesan.
6. Return to oven and bake until salmon has cooked through, about 5 – 10 minutes longer. Cut salmon into portions. Serve warm.
Banana Blueberry Coconut Oatmeal Cups
2 ripe medium bananas, mashed
3/4 cup coconut milk
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup fresh blueberries
1/4 cup diced bananas
1/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a muffin pan with baking spray or line with paper liners.
2. In a large bowl, combine the bananas, egg, coconut milk and maple syrup. 3. Whisk to blend. Add the baking powder, vanilla extract and cinnamon. Whisk until smooth. Stir in the oats, blueberries, bananas and coconut.
4. Using a spoon or cookie scoop, fill the muffin cups 3/4 full.
5. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and let cool 5 to 10 minutes. Serve warm or store in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to one week. Makes 12 cups.
Kale Pesto Pasta
1 pound pasta
4 cups kale, chopped, loosely packed
1/3 cup olive oil, or as needed
1 large lemon (1/4 c juice, 1 tablespoon zest)
1 clove garlic
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
1/3 cup Parmesan, grated
1/2 teaspoon salt, or as needed
Freshly cracked pepper to taste
4 ounces mozzarella (optional)
1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil for the pasta. Once boiling, add the pasta and continue to boil until the pasta is tender. Drain in a colander and let cool.
2. While the pasta is cooking, prepare the pesto. Pull the kale leaves from the woody stems, and roughly chop into thin strips. Place the kale in a colander and rinse with cool water. Let the excess water drain away.
3. Add the chopped and washed kale to a food processor along with the olive oil, 1/4 cup juice from the lemon, garlic, walnuts, Parmesan, salt, and pepper. Purée the mixture until smooth and bright green. Add more oil if needed to allow the mixture to become a thick, smooth sauce. Taste the pesto and adjust the salt, pepper, or lemon juice to your liking. Set the pesto aside.
4. Once the pasta is drained and cooled to the point where it is no longer steaming, transfer it to a large bowl. Add about half of the pesto and stir until the pasta is coated.
5. Dice the mozzarella into small cubes, then add it to the pasta along with about 1 Tbsp of the zest from the lemon. Stir to combine with the pesto pasta. Add more pesto until everything is coated in a thick layer. Top with more freshly cracked pepper and serve, or refrigerate until ready to eat.