chocolate chewy bars

These are very tasty!

Chocolate Chewy Bars
1/2 cup chunky peanut butter
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1/4 cup sugar
5 cups wheat-bran flakes
1 (6-ounce) package semisweet chocolate chips
3/4 cup butterscotch chips

Line a 9×13 baking pan with foil, extending it 2 inches beyond the short sides (to create a handle, so that the bars can be easily lifted out of the pan). Spray the bottom and sides of the foil with nonstick spray. Combine the peanut butter, corn syrup, and sugar in a large saucepan. Cook over low heat, stirring frequently until the peanut butter melts, about 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat. Add the wheat-bran flakes; mix well to coat. Spoon the mixture into the baking pan. With fingers sprayed with nonstick spray, press the mixture firmly into the bottom of the pan to form an even layer. To make the icing, place the chocolate chips in one small microwavable bowl and the butterscotch chips in another. Working with one bowl at a time, microwave on Med-High until the chips are partially melted, 30-60 seconds; stir until smooth. Spread the melted chocolate and butterscotch chips alternately over the top of the cereal mixture. Gently run a toothpick or thin-bladed knife through the melted chips to marbleize. Refrigerate until the icing is set, about 20 minutes. Lift out the whole bar, holding on to the foil ends and place on a cutting board. Remove the foil and cut into 24 bars. Per serving (1 bar) 148 calories, 7 grams fat, 2 grams fiber

Mexican Skillet Casserole

I made this today and it is wonderful!

Mexican Skillet Dinner
8 oz ground beef, 96/4
1 TB diced onion
1 TB taco seasoning
14 oz petite diced tomatoes, drained
15 oz black beans, rinsed and drained
15 oz canned corn, drained
1 c. salsa
2 c. water
6 oz Smart Taste Rotini
4oz light cream cheese
3oz reduced fat pepperjack cheese

In large skillet, brown ground beef and onion. Drain off any fat. Add all ingredients except the cheeses. Simmer on low for 15 minutes or until the pasta is tender. Add cheeses & stir until melted.
Yield: 6 servings (about 1 ½ cups). Per serving= 345 Calories; 8g Fat (20.5% calories from fat); 22g Protein; 50g Carbohydrate; 9g Dietary Fiber; 39mg Cholesterol; 1078mg Sodium. Exchanges: 1 1/2 Grain(Starch); 1/2 Lean Meat; 1 Vegetable; 1/2 Fat; 0 Other Carbohydrates.

Barbecue Lima Beans

I wasn’t sure how these would be but they were good!

Barbecue Lima Beans
2 slices bacon
1 TB diced onion
1 lb frozen lima beans
2 TB sugar free syrup
1 tsp maple flavor
1/2 c. ketchup
3 dashes hot sauce
2 TB Splenda

Brown bacon in small skillet. Drain skillet then saute’ onion in the skillet. Combine all ingredients in small saucepan. Simmer 10-15 minutes.
Yield: 5 servings= 164 Calories; 2g Fat (9.1% calories from fat); 8g Protein; 31g Carbohydrate; 4g Dietary Fiber; 2mg Cholesterol; 382mg Sodium. Exchanges: 1 1/2 Grain(Starch); 1/2 Lean Meat; 0 Vegetable; 0 Fat; 1/2 Other Carbohydrates.

Italian Pork Chops

This is from my book Slow Easy.

Italian Pork Chops
1 lb boneless pork loin chops
½ lb fresh mushrooms, sliced
Onion to taste
1 green bell pepper, seeded and cut into thin rings
1 c. fat free Italian dressing
Dash garlic powder

Spray 3 quart crock with cooking spray. Sprinkle chops with garlic powder. Scatter vegetables over chops. Pour dressing over all. Cover and cook on low 4-6 hours.
Yield: 3 servings= 236 cals, 7g fat, 2g fiber, 14g carb, 29g protein, 1180mg sodium, 68mg chol

Grits Casserole

This recipe isn’t really quick as it takes a while to bake but it is really easy so it’s likely I will include it in my Quick & Easy cookbook.

Grits Casserole
1/3 cup quick-cooking grits
1/2 cup water
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup skim milk
1 cup lean ham
1 cup cheese, reduced fat Sargento mexican blend
1 eggs
1 tsp dry mustard
1 tsp dried parsley
2 dashes hot sauce (2 to 3)
2 egg whites

Boil water and salt and add grits. Remove from heat and let stand 10 minutes. This will be very thick! Combine all ingredients and pour into a deep pie plate coated with PAM.
Bake at 350* for 40 – 45 minutes. Test with a knife to be sure center is done. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.
Yield: 4 servings. Per serving= 221 Calories; 9g Fat (37.0% calories from fat); 20g Protein; 15g Carbohydrate; trace Dietary Fiber; 84mg Cholesterol; 1031mg Sodium. Exchanges: 1/2 Grain(Starch); 1 1/2 Lean Meat; 0 Vegetable; 0 Non-Fat Milk; 0 Fat.

Mini Microwave Triple Chocolate Cake

This is yummy, quick and easy! And even better you don’t have a whole cake sitting around…

Mini Microwave Triple Chocolate Cake

2 T Pillsbury Moist Supreme Reduced Sugar Cake Mix, Devil’s Food
2 T Cool Whip Free, Thawed
1 T Fat Free Vanilla Yogurt (I just used water instead)
1 T Hershey’s Lite Chocolate Syrup, Divided

Stir together the whipped topping and half the syrup, and then place mixture in the freezer to firm up while you prep the rest of your dessert. Next, in a very small microwave-safe dish (like a ramekin), combine cake mix and yogurt. (Don’t worry if it seems like a small amount. Your cake will puff up – we promise) Stir until smooth and blended. Microwave for 1 minute, and then allow cooling for 5 minutes. Once cake has cooled, remove chocolate topping from freezer, and spoon it over your cake. Finally, drizzle the remaining chocolate syrup on top…Enjoy!!

Makes 1 serving: Per Serving: (entire recipe): 123 calories, 1 g fat, 201 mg sodium, 28 g carbs, 0.75g fiber, 12g sugars, 2g protein

Asian Salad

I used leftover Asian Barbecue Chicken to make these easy salads.

Asian Salad
8 oz cooked boneless skinless chicken thighs
5 oz baby greens
11 oz mandarin oranges, drained
2 tsp sesame seeds
1 TB olive oil
2 TB rice wine vinegar
3 TB low sodium soy sauce
1 TB Splenda

Dice cooked chicken. Separate lettuce into 4 bowls. Top lettuce with chicken and oranges. In measuring cup, combine sesame seeds, olive oil, rice wine vinegar, soy sauce and Splenda. Pour over lettuce mix in bowls.
Yield: 4 servings. Per serving=
139 Calories; 8g Fat (46.0% calories from fat); 12g Protein; 8g Carbohydrate; 2g Dietary Fiber; 46mg Cholesterol; 302mg Sodium. Exchanges: 0 Grain(Starch); 0 Lean Meat; 0 Vegetable; 1/2 Fruit; 1 Fat; 0 Other Carbohydrates.

Easter Nests

easter nestsHappy Easter!

Easter Nests
4 c. fiber one cereal
½ c. light corn syrup
2/3 c. peanut butter
80 peanut M&M’s

Melt corn syrup and peanut butter together. Pour over cereal and mix well. Drop by spoonful onto waxed paper and mold into a nest shape. Place 2 peanut M&M’s in each nest. Refrigerate to set and store in refrigerator.
Yield: 40= 69 cals, 3g fat, 3g fiber

Asian Barbecue Chicken

You know how I love chicken thighs! Here’s another good recipe!

Asian Barbecue Chicken

2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/4 teaspoon curry powder
1 dash garlic powder
1 1/2 pounds chicken thighs, boneless, skinless

Combine brown sugar, soy sauce, lime juice, red pepper, curry, and garlic in large zip-top plastic bag; add chicken. Seal and marinate in refrigerator 4 hours, turning occasionally. Prepare grill. Remove chicken from bag, and throw away marinade. Place chicken on grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill 20 minutes or until done. (8 minutes on indoor grill.)
Yield: 4 servings. per serving= 211 Calories; 9g Fat (36.2% calories from fat); 30g Protein; 6g Carbohydrate; trace Dietary Fiber; 122mg Cholesterol; 1134mg Sodium. Exchanges: 0 Grain(Starch); 1/2 Vegetable; 0 Fruit; 0 Fat; 1/2 Other Carbohydrates.

Calico Salad

Today I made this tasty vegetable salad. I’m not a big fan of vinegar so I just used a little.

Calico Salad

15 ounces chickpeas, canned
14 1/2 ounces French-style green beans
1/2 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 cups celery, sliced
15 ounces white corn, canned, drained
2 ounces pimientos
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1/2 cup Splenda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil

In a medium bowl combine chickpeas, green beans, peas, celery, corn, and pimientos. In a measuring cup combine vinegar, Splenda salt, pepper, and olive oil. Pour vinegar mixture over vegetables and combine well. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
Yield: 7 servings (6 cups). Per serving=
160 Calories; 3g Fat (15.9% calories from fat); 6g Protein; 30g Carbohydrate; 5g Dietary Fiber; 0mg Cholesterol; 422mg Sodium. Exchanges: 1 1/2 Grain(Starch); 1 Vegetable; 1/2 Fat; 0 Other Carbohydrates.