Recipe: Vegetarian Lime Orzo

Trying to limit your meat intake? Try this delicious vegetarian lime orzo recipe from

2 cups orzo pasta
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 zucchini, peeled and shredded
1 carrot, peeled and shredded
1 (16 ounce) can stewed tomatoes, undrained
1 (14 ounce) can vegetable broth
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1 teaspoon dried basil leaves
Salt and black pepper to taste
1/4 cup chopped green onions
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
2 teaspoons grated lime zest
2 tablespoons lime juice
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese for topping

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Stir in the garlic and orzo pasta; cook and stir until pasta turns a light, golden color, about 5 minutes. Stir in zucchini and carrots; cook until vegetables soften, about 2 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, vegetable broth, Italian seasoning, and basil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Reduce heat to medium. Cover, and simmer until almost all liquid is absorbed, about 10 minutes. Stir in the green onions, parsley, lime zest, and lime juice. Remove from heat, cool slightly, and serve sprinkled with Parmesan cheese.

Recipe: Green Beans with Walnuts

Green BeansMake this healthy and delicious side dish for your next holiday gathering.


  • 2 pounds fresh green beans, washed and trimmed
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 2 tablespoons walnut oil
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
  • ground black pepper to taste
  • salt to taste


Place the walnuts on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 5 to 8 minutes.

Cook beans in large pot of boiling salted water until just tender, about 5 minutes. Drain. Rinse beans with cold water, and drain well. Can be prepared 6 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature.

Melt butter or margarine with oil in heavy large skillet over high heat. Add beans and toss until heated through, about 4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add walnuts and parsley and toss. Transfer to bowl and serve.

Makes eight servings.





Enjoy Fall Fruits and Veggies


Elizabeth Villalta, MS, RD, LDN

Registered dietician Elizabeth Villalta of the Duke Center for Metabolic and Weight Loss Surgery shares ways you can incorporate fall’s finest fruits and vegetables into your meals.

As we head into fall, there is no need to decrease our produce intake. We should (and can) continue to eat a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables. Fall is a great time for squash, cranberries, ginger, mushrooms, passion fruit, sweet potatoes, turnips and more. Below are a few ways you can enjoy fall produce.

Acorn Squash
Acorn squash can be added as a side dish or sauce, or steal the show as the main entrée! If you’re tired of the same old spaghetti dinner, try cooking thinly sliced acorn squash just like you would spaghetti. Acorn squash is fat free, cholesterol free, sodium free and a good source of vitamin C. One-half cup of acorn squash contains just seven grams of carbohydrates, where one-half cup of spaghetti contains 21 grams. Click here for more ways to enjoy acorn squash.

Cranberry is another fall classic that is low in fat and sodium and a good source of vitamin C and fiber. While this fruit is often thought of with a big turkey dinner, cranberries can be added to breakfast cereal, trail mix and even dessert. For more ideas on adding cranberry into your diet click here.

It isn’t just for carving! Pumpkin can be incorporated into everything from soup and salad to muffins and dessert. Are you looking to try a new smoothie recipe? Try adding pumpkin into your shake! Pumpkin seeds are also a fun seasonal treat and a good source of protein. Click here for 10 great ways to add pumpkin into your fall diet.

Recipe: Whole Wheat Pizza Crust



  • 1 teaspoon white sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups warm water
  • 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour


In a large bowl, dissolve sugar in warm water. Sprinkle yeast over the top, and let stand for about 10 minutes, until foamy.

Stir the olive oil and salt into the yeast mixture, then mix in the whole wheat flour and 1 cup of the all-purpose flour until dough starts to come together. Tip dough out onto a surface floured with the remaining all-purpose flour and knead until all the flour has been absorbed, and the ball of dough becomes smooth, about 10 minutes. Place dough in an oiled bowl, and turn to coat the surface. Cover loosely with a towel, and let stand in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.

When the dough is doubled, tip the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and divide into 2 pieces for 2 thin crust, or leave whole to make one thick crust. Form into a tight ball. Let rise for about 45 minutes, until doubled.

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Roll a ball of dough with a rolling pin until it will not stretch any further. Then, drape it over both of your fists, and gently pull the edges outward, while rotating the crust. When the circle has reached the desired size, place on a well oiled pizza pan. Top pizza with your favorite toppings, such as sauce, low-fat cheese or vegetables.

Bake for 16 to 20 minutes (depending on thickness) in the preheated oven, until the crust is crisp and golden at the edges, and cheese is melted on the top.

Makes 10 servings.

Recipe: Annie’s Fruit Salsa and Cinnamon Chips


Cut KiwiEnjoy this delicious and versatile recipe from

Recipe makes 10 servings

  •    2 kiwis, peeled and diced
  •    2 Golden Delicious apples – peeled, cored and diced
  •    8 ounces raspberries
  •    1 pound strawberries
  •    2 tablespoons white sugar
  •    1 tablespoon brown sugar
  •    3 tablespoons fruit preserves, any flavor
  •    10 (10 inch) flour tortillas
  •    butter flavored cooking spray
  •    2 tablespoons cinnamon sugar

In a large bowl, thoroughly mix kiwis, Golden Delicious apples, raspberries, strawberries, white sugar, brown sugar and fruit preserves. Cover and chill in the refrigerator at least 15 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Coat one side of each flour tortilla with butter flavored cooking spray. Cut into wedges and arrange in a single layer on a large baking sheet. Sprinkle wedges with desired amount of cinnamon sugar. Spray again with cooking spray.

Bake in the preheated oven 8 to 10 minutes. Repeat with any remaining tortilla wedges. Allow to cool approximately 15 minutes. Serve with chilled fruit mixture.

How to add more fruits and vegetables to your diet this summer


By Elizabeth Villalta, MS, RD, LDN
Duke Center for Metabolic and Weight Loss Surgery

The average person needs four servings of fruits and vegetables daily, and summer is the perfect time to add more fruits and vegetables to your diet because so many are in season. You can use fruits and vegetables to spice up a recipe, or if you have picky eaters, hide them in a recipe. However you do it, eating more fruits and vegetables is a great way to boost the nutrition of any dish. Many fruits and vegetables contain soluble fiber, which helps carry cholesterol out of the body. They also contain vitamins needed for everyday health, including the antioxidant properties of vitamins A, C, and E. Flavonoids and carotenoids give fruits and vegetables their color and also act as antioxidants in the body. Antioxidants help fight off free radicals created in your body that can cause cancer. Here are some ways to add fruits and vegetables to your diet this summer.

Fruit glazes or marinades: Blueberries, cherries, peaches, apricots and raspberries are all fruits that pair well with the savory flavor of meats and BBQ sauce. The juicy acidity of the fruit will help tenderize your meat. Check out recipes for a blueberry bourbon BBQ sauce and for peach chutney.

Fruit salsa: Peaches and mango can be a sweet addition to your salsa this summer. Peaches and mangos not only contain vitamins, but also an array of minerals that act as cofactors to keep normal body functions going. Try out this recipe for avocado-mango-salsa.

Grilled fruit and vegetables: Kabobs are a quick and easy way to combine fruits and vegetables together in the same meal. You can put onions, pineapples, peaches, bell peppers and tomatoes on a skewer and throw them all on the grill for a sweet and savory meal. Try this for dinner, honey chicken kabobs.

Soup: Cold soup in the summer is an easy way to beat the heat. You can make traditional gazpacho with tomatoes, or switch it up with a watermelon gazpacho that gives the perfect balance between sweet and salty. Try this recipe for watermelon and cucumber gazpacho.

Smoothies: For picky eaters who do not like vegetables, try adding kale or spinach to a fresh smoothie. The sweetness of the fruits hides the flavor of the greens. Kale and spinach add additional potassium, calcium and iron. Here is a recipe for a blueberry spinach smoothie.

Vegetable puree: For picky eaters who do not like vegetables, adding a puree of individual or mixed vegetables will help increase the servings you need daily. The best vegetables to puree are steamed or boiled carrots, cauliflower, yellow squash, broccoli, zucchini and spinach. Pulverize any combination of these vegetables and add them to sauces, casseroles, soups or stew. Try out barbell burgers or cauliflower puree.

Strawberry-Avocado Salsa with Cinnamon Tortilla Chips

This recipe from Cooking Light looks perfectly tasty for the season!


2 teaspoons canola oil
6 (6-inch) whole-wheat flour tortillas
2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 1/2 cups finely chopped peeled ripe avocado (about 2)
1 cup finely chopped strawberries
2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
1 teaspoon minced seeded jalapeño pepper
2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
3/8 teaspoon salt


  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. To prepare chips, brush oil evenly over one side of each tortilla. Combine sugar and cinnamon; sprinkle evenly over oil-coated sides of tortillas. Cut each tortilla into 12 wedges; arrange wedges in a single layer on two baking sheets. Bake at 350° for 10 minutes or until crisp. Make the chips in advance, cool completely, and store in an airtight container until ready to serve.
  3. Combine avocado and remaining ingredients; stir gently to combine. Serve with chips.

Click here for the nutritional information and other healthy recipes on