Winter Recipes: 5 Healthy Meals From Asian-Inspired Grilled Chicken To Butternut Squash

Recipes
Diets have expiration dates, so do the results! Stop dieting and take control of your health with these recipes. Courtesy

We’re addicted to fad diets, cleanses, and programs that promise miracles in minutes. But when diets have expiration dates, so do the results. That’s why nutrition expert Brooke Alpert wrote The Diet Detox a practical, non-diet book that helps people stop dieting and take control of their health – for good!

"I’m not a chef. In fact, I’m far from it. But, I can follow a recipe. And if I can follow a recipe, then you can too," said the author. "That’s all you need to do here. All the recipes have 5 ingredients or less (not including salt and pepper, cooking oil, or a garnish) and make creating your ideal plate (protein, fiber, starch) very easy."

Brooke Alpert, M.S., R.D., C.D.N., is a nationally recognized nutrition expert and author. She is the founder of B Nutritious, a private nutrition coun­seling and consulting practice in New York City. Brooke’s expertise and nutrition knowledge have led her to be featured on national television and quotes in national magazines and online news sites regularly.

Alpert shared with The Latin Times warm, yummy dishes that will get you through these cold winter days. All made with 5 ingredients or less, they are healthy, full of protein or fiber and sure to warm you up!

Check Out Brooke's Winter Recipes:

  • Asian-Inspired Grilled Chicken

Asian-Inspired Chicken + Coconutty Quinoa Asian-Inspired Grilled Chicken Courtesy

Chicken is such a great protein option, but it certainly gets boring! Not this dish. The bright flavors will pull you out of your chicken rut. Don’t get stuck always using chicken breast; chicken thighs are just as healthy and taste so much better.

Serve with: Sautéed Bok Choy and Fresh Quinoa Salad 

INGREDIENTS

4 tbsp. tomato paste

½ tsp. salt

2 tbsp. toasted sesame oil

3 tbsp. tamari (gluten-free soy sauce)

2 tbsp. sesame seeds

8 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs

DIRECTIONS

1. In a mixing bowl, combine the tomato paste, sesame oil, tamari, and sesame seeds and mix with a fork until incorporated.
2. Add the chicken thighs and coat well, then let them marinate in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour or overnight.
3. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil and set aside.
4. Place the chicken thighs skin side up on the lined baking sheet and bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until fully cooked through.
5. Serve immediately.

  • Sautéed Bok Choy

"I love introducing people to this amazing vegetable," said Brooke. "It keeps its crunch even when cooked and lends itself to great flavors when paired with Asian inspired ingredients."

INGREDIENTS

2 tbsp. coconut oil

4 garlic cloves, minced

1 quarter-size piece fresh ginger, minced.

1 tbsp. tamari

1 tbsp. water

1 ½ lbs. bok choy ends trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces

Optional: ¼ tsp. red pepper flakes

DIRECTIONS

1. Heat the coconut oil in a large pan over medium-high heat.
2. Add the garlic and cook, being careful not to burn it, for about 30 seconds.
3. Add the ginger and stir for a few seconds.
4. Add the tamari and water.
5. Gently add the bok choy and combine well with the other ingredients.
6. Cook for 2 to 4 minutes, until the bok choy, is easily pierced with a fork.

  • Zucchini Noodles Primavera
     

Zucchini noodles, aka zoodles, make eating your veggies fun again. These noodles are sturdy enough for toppings like the primavera-style sauce I’ve paired them with here. Any simple protein will go great with this, and it’s an easy, homey meal that’s loaded with fiber.

INGREDIENTS

zucchinis, spiralized with a 1/8-inch spacing blade or cut into long strips with a vegetable peeler

2 tbsp. coconut oil

1 garlic clove

1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes, quartered

1 tsp. salt

Juice of 1 lemon

3 to 4 Tbsp. Parmesan cheese

DIRECTIONS

1. Heat 1 tbsp. of the coconut oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the zoodles and cook tender but still crunchy, 2 to 3 minutes
2. Remove the pan from the heat and let sit for 1 to 3 minutes so the zucchini can release its extra moisture.
3. Drain the zoodles through a colander and place on a paper towel-lined plate to absorb any more water.
4. Wipe the skillet clean and heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of coconut oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant, 30 seconds.
5. Add the tomatoes and salt and reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook until the juices from the tomatoes come out, about 4 to 5 minutes. Remove from the heat.
6. Return the zoodles to the pan and add the lemon juice and Parmesan cheese.
Gently combine.
7. Serve immediately.

  • Spaghetti Squash Pizza Bowl
     

Spaghetti Squash Pizza Bowl 2 Spaghetti Squash Pizza Bowl Courtesy

"I brought this dish to a friend’s house for a holiday dinner once and all the men at the table couldn’t stop raving about it," revealed the cooker. "That’s when I knew I was really on to something. Getting these guys to ask for seconds of spaghetti squash was hilarious but its true, this really tastes like an indulgence."

INGREDIENTS

1 medium spaghetti squash, halved lengthwise and seeds scooped out

1 (24oz) jar tomato sauce (no sugar added)

1 cup ricotta cheese

¾ cup shredded Mozzarella cheese

¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese

DIRECTIONS

1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet and a glass baking pan with aluminum foil.
2. Place the spaghetti squash on the prepared baking sheet flesh-side down.
3. Bake for 30 to 45 min, until you can easily poke a fork into the squash.
4. Flip the squash over and let cool for 10 minutes. Then, using a fork, “rake” the squash to create the noodles, scooping them into a large bowl.
5. Add tomato sauce and mozzarella and ricotta cheeses and mix until well combined.
6. Add the squash and sauce mixture to the prepared baking pan and return to the oven for about 15 minutes.
7. Sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese and cook for another 5 to 10 minutes, until the cheese is slightly golden brown.
8. Serve warm.

  • Butternut Squash
     

Butternut Squash Butternut Squash Courtesy

The natural sweetness of this winter squash comes out, even more, when it’s roasted well. Those burnt little ends are always my favorite bites. I like to keep the flavors simple to let the naturally delicious flavor of the squash shine.
 

INGREDIENTS

1 medium butternut squash (about 2 lbs.), peeled, seeded, and inch cubes1-inch cubes

2 Tbsp. olive oil

1 tsp. kosher salt

1 tsp. black pepper

DIRECTIONS

1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and set aside.
2. In a large bowl, toss the butternut squash cubes with the olive oil, salt, and pepper
3. Spread the squash onto the prepared baking sheet in a single even layer.
4. Roast for 25 to 30 minutes, stirring throughout, until tender and golden.

What do you think?
Lifestyle Reporter

Shirley Gomez has been exposed to many aspects of the art world. Besides being a Fashion Journalist, she studied Fashion Styling and Fashion Styling for Men at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City, Interior Design at UNIBE and Fashion Design at ITSMJ Fashion School in the Dominican Republic. She worked as a Fashion Journalist, Fashion Stylist and Social Media Manager at one of the most recognized magazines in the Dominican Republic, Oh! Magazine, as an occasional Entertainment Journalist, of the prestigious newspaper “Listín Diario”, as well as a fashion collaborator of a radio show aired in 100.9 FM SuperQ. When Shirley is not writing you can find her listening Demi Lovato or Beyonce's songs, decorating her apartment or watching Family Feud.