Do you know what’s in your lunch? Most Americans are getting too much sugar, and that’s partly because sugar finds its way into even the healthiest-sounding foods. Many packaged foods contain surprising amounts of added sugar, usually listed on nutrition labels as maltose, dextrose, fructose, or other less obvious terms. And it’s hard to know what you’re ordering when you go out, as many restaurants will opt for cheaper ingredients that contain sugar.
Today, the average American consumes 20 teaspoons of sugar a day — that’s more than double what the American Heart Association recommends for optimal health.
You might recognize celebrity nutritionist and registered dietitian Keri Glassman of Nutritious Life from her appearances on shows like “The View,” “The Talk,” and “The Today Show.” Keri takes a “whole person” approach to wellness, and a big part of that comes down to what you put in your body.
She’s come up with some easy-to-make recipes that are nutritious, delicious, and free of added sugar. Check them out below!
1. Chicken salad with balsamic dressing
- 2 cups baby spinach
- 2 oz. grilled chicken, chopped
- 1 tbsp. soft goat cheese, crumbled
- 1 tbsp. chopped walnuts
- 1/2 cup chopped Granny smith apple
- 1 tsp. grapeseed oil
- 2 tsp. balsamic vinegar
- In a medium bowl, combine spinach, chicken, cheese, walnuts, and apple.
- Drizzle in oil and vinegar and toss to combine.
2. Quinoa primavera
- 2 tsp. extra virgin, cold-pressed olive oil
- 1 cup zucchini, cut into 1/8” thick rounds and halved
- 1/3 cup red bell pepper, cut into 1” pieces
- 1/4 tsp. sea salt
- 1/4 tsp. pepper
- 1/4 cup frozen corn, thawed
- 1/2 tsp. minced garlic
- 3/4 cup cooked quinoa
- 2 tbsp. freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 tbsp. finely chopped fresh basil
- 2 cups arugula
- Heat 1 teaspoon of olive oil in large nonstick skillet over medium heat.
- Add zucchini, peppers, salt, and pepper. Cook 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until vegetables are softened and zucchini is slightly golden.
- Reduce heat to medium low. Stir in corn and garlic and cook 2 more minutes.
- Transfer vegetable mixture to bowl, add cooked quinoa, and toss with remaining olive oil, cheese, and basil.
- On a clean plate, top bed of arugula with quinoa mix, and serve.
3. Steak salad
Image source: Keri Glassman
- 4 oz. grilled, lean steak
- 2 cups baby spinach
- 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1/4 cup chopped red onions
- 1 tbsp. Keri's lemon dressing
For the dressing:
- 1/2 cup extra virgin, cold-pressed olive oil
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
- In a large bowl, combine steak, spinach, tomatoes, and red onions.
- Toss with dressing and serve immediately.
4. Sausage and peppers pita
- 1 tsp. extra virgin, cold-pressed olive oil
- 1/4 cup red onions, sliced
- 1/3 cup red bell pepper, sliced
- 1/3 cup white mushrooms, sliced
- 1 organic chicken sausage
- 1 tbsp. Dijon mustard
- 1 tbsp. hummus
- 1 whole-grain wheat pita
- Heat olive oil in medium nonstick skillet or grill pan over medium-high heat.
- Add onions and peppers in single layer. Cover and cook 5 minutes.
- Toss onions and peppers and add mushrooms. Place sausage next to vegetables and cook 8 to 10 more minutes, turning occasionally, until vegetables are softened and sausage is heated through.
- Combine mustard and hummus in a small bowl. Top pita with sausage, mustard mixture, and vegetables.