Dispensing Some Good Ol' Advice on Cooking and Life:

Meat Us Halfway …

Posted By CookingBelle - October 1st, 2014

 
October is National Vegetarian Awareness Month, which means it’s the perfect time to experiment with vegetarian meals for my family. We’re not saying that meat isn’t delicious (just ask my boys!), but vegetarian recipes can be just as yummy and they boast great health benefits!

Did you know a vegetarian diet is proven to speed up metabolism and burn calories 16% faster than a meat-based diet? Put that together with the energy of chasing your little one around the house and you’ve got a great workout regimen!

You know that vegetarianism is more than just a trend, but keeping your kitchen stocked with fresh vegetables can be difficult – not to mention expensive! That’s why stocking Allens canned vegetables in my pantry saves the day and makes going vegetarian convenient and accessible to the family. And because the veggies are canned at the peak of freshness, you don’t sacrifice nutrition or taste. I also love mixing Veg-All into almost any casserole recipe … The great color and taste just might turn your meat eaters into veggie eaters in no time.

Check out one of my family’s favorite vegetable recipes:

Au Gratin Veg-All Bake

Au Gratin Veg-All Bake

Au Gratin Veg-All Bake

Preparation and Cooking Time: 1 hour

Ingredients

2 (15 oz) cans Veg-All Original Mixed Vegetables, drained
4 Tbsp. Butter, divided
1 cup Bread crumbs, croutons or crushed crackers
1/2 medium Onion, finely chopped
2 Tbsp. Flour
1/8 tsp Dry mustard
1 cup Milk
1 tsp Celery seed
1/4 tsp Black pepper
1 cup Sharp cheddar cheese, shredded

Directions

Preheat oven to 350°F. In medium saucepan, melt 2 tablespoons butter. add bread crumbs and toss to coat; set aside. In large saucepan, sautè onions in remaining 2 tablespoons butter until tender. Stir in flour and mustard; cook 1 minute. Slowly stir in milk, stirring constantly until mixture is smooth and thick; add celery seed and pepper. Stir in Veg-All; pour into 1 1/2-quart casserole. Top with shredded cheese and bread crumbs. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until bubbling and golden brown. Serve hot.

Easy Back to School Recipes

Posted By CookingBelle - August 19th, 2014

Sloppy BBQ Veg-All SandwichWhere did the summer go? Sure we had our share of exciting little league baseball games, relaxing picnics and hot lazy days, but the kids are excited to see their classmates. Like all busy moms, I look for healthy recipes for school lunches that are both nutritious and easy!

My little trick is to make an extra portion for dinner and use the leftovers for lunch the next day. For instance, my boys love Sloppy Barbequed Veg-All sandwiches, it’s so easy to pack a scoop with tortilla chips for the perfect lunch. Another family fav is Diggity Dog Biscuits using Veg-All Vegetables … Mmmmm, they’re just as tasty warm on your dinner table as they are in the lunchbox. (And the kids don’t even know they’re they’re eating delicious canned vegetables!) Looking for lunch recipe ideas? Check out the great tasting recipes at Sager Creek Veggies … they have so many kid-friendly recipes, it just may turn you into a lunch packin’ wonder woman!

6 Back-to-School Tips

Posted By CookingBelle - August 18th, 2014

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Back to school can be exciting and exhausting at the same time. Between shopping for new clothes and a bright new lunch box, you may need a few “reminders” for you as school fast approaches. We’ve put together a few tips to help you ace getting your family back on track for school!

1. Visit the doctor

Making sure your child is healthy can help them be successful and start the year off strong.

2. Get their minds back in shape

You may feel like you’re out of summer activities for the kids with the dog days of summer, but keep encouraging them to go outside, play games and do puzzles. Throw in a few math, geography and history questions across the dinner table; let it be a fun conversation to inspire curiosity and learning!

3. Get their sleeping on track

Start putting your kids back on a disciplined bed times so that adjusting to waking up for school is easier.

4. Setup their “homework office”

Involve your kids in preparing a study area that they can do homework. Take them shopping to pick out supplies that get them excited about being back in school. While your out, have them help you pick out ingredients for nutritious recipes that are packed full of veggies!

Veg-All Almond Chicken Salad

5. Keep everyone accountable

Create a calendar so that everyone is on the same page. And when it comes to meal planning, get your kids excited by picking out recipes for them to help with.

6. Plan for leftovers

As school starts, begin planning dinners that can be used in lunches the next day, like this Veg-All Almond Chicken Salad that can be easily kept for a lunch sandwich the next day.

6 Easy Ways to Add Veggies

Posted By CookingBelle - July 14th, 2014

 
Recently I was reminded that we all should be eating 2 1/2 cups of vegetables each day! Sometimes eating your veggies is easier said than done. This summer, with the help of Sager Creek, I’m trying 6 different ways to incorporate more veggies into my family’s diet !

Chunky Veg-All Salsa

1. Salsa. You may love salsa but not always think of it as a way to get your veggies. It’s easy when you use mixed vegetables in this Chunky Veg-All Salsa … your family will say Olè to the tastes!

Freshlike Spring Pasta Salad

2. Eat a veggie side at every meal. Canned vegetables can make a quick and easy side to any recipe this summer. Check out Allens Cut Green Beans, heat and eat!

3. Wake up to vegetables. These Breakfast Veg-All Burritos include eggs, sausage and mixed vegetables for a full morning of nutrition!

4. Kick up your pastas! When making pasta, dice up a can of Italian Green Beans or toss in Freshlike Sweet Peas to your sauce! Don’t forget to include canned vegetables in other pasta recipes, like this delicious Freshlike Spring Pasta Salad recipe!

5. Add canned vegetables to dishes you already enjoy! Try this Veg-All Pizza recipe … it packs in the nutrition and flavor!

6. Make your vegetables easily accessible to remind yourself to use them. Put your canned vegetables at eye level and in the front of your pantry so that you’re more likely to use them at mealtime.

 

A Salad Fit for Zeus!

Posted By CookingBelle - July 13th, 2014

 
Finding healthy recipes packed with nutrients that please the whole family is a challenge for any vegetarian. Sager Creek Vegetable Company has taken out the guesswork in preparing a delicious vegetarian recipe that incorporates the entire color wheel. This vegetarian recipe is sure to satisfy everyone, and your family will forget about the meat that didn’t make it into the dish! As an added bonus, the olive oil in this recipe helps prevent against heart disease!

Veg-All Lemon Pepper Salad

Veg-All Lemon Pepper Salad

Veg-All Lemon Pepper Salad

Preparation and Cooking Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients

1 (15 oz) can Veg-All Original Mixed Vegetables, drained
1/4 cup pine nuts
3 cups water
1/2 cup orzo pasta, uncooked
1/2 cup red pepper, diced
1/2 cup green pepper, diced
1/2 cup feta cheese, crumbled
1/4 cup black olives, quartered
2 scallions (or green onions), thinly sliced
1 tsp whole cumin seeds
1/4 tsp dried dill weed
Lettuce

Dressing:
1/4 cup olive oil
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. lemon pepper
1/2 tsp salt

Granish:
1 medium Cucumber, peeled and sliced
10-20 grape tomatoes

Directions

Preheat oven to 400°F. Bake pine nuts for 4 minutes; set aside. In 3 cups boiling water, cook orzo pasta for 9 minutes. Drain and rinse with cold water. Let stand in strainer. In medium mixing bowl, mix all ingredients for dressing; set aside. In large salad bowl, toss all ingredients for salad. Add dressing; mix well. Serve on bed of lettuce and garnish with cucumber slices and grape tomatoes.

Celebrate 4th of July with a Nutrition-Packed Burger

Posted By CookingBelle - June 26th, 2014

 

Buddy’s Black Bean Burger

With the Fourth of July fast approaching, I’m starting to think about recipes that will be great for our celebration! And you know me, I am always looking for vegetable recipes that are convenient and delicious for my family. Since I’ll be grilling on the 4th, there’s no better veggie burger than Buddy’s Black Bean Burger, using Allens Seasoned Black Beans!

By cooking with black beans I pack these burgers with fiber and protein, which have been shown to decrease the risk of heart attack and coronary heart disease … mmm, healthy and delicious! I found this easy vegetarian burger recipe on our Fourth of July Planner. As you plan for Independence Day, don’t forget other convenient canned vegetable recipes, like Italian Veg-All Salad and Southern BBQ Green Beans, both are great additions to any summer BBQ.

Celebrate “Eat Your Veggies Day” All Month!

Posted By CookingBelle - June 5th, 2014

 
As a mom, from time to time I have to remind my family why eating vegetables is so good for them. What better time for a healthy nudge than to celebrate Eat Your Veggies Day on June 17th! However, because canned vegetables are so delicious, I’m not celebrating just one day, I’m celebrating all month long with easy vegetable recipes from Allens. One of my favorite recipes is the Five Bean Salad … so full of color and flavor! Your family will love this easy dinner recipe!

Speaking of color, I also found that each color of vegetable has a unique nutritional benefit. Below you’ll see a few fun facts about some veggies dear to my heart. Enjoy!

Five Bean Salad

Green vegetables, like Allens Lima Beans, are high in lutein, a powerful antioxidant that can reduce cardiovascular disease!

Red vegetables can help keep your heart healthy, your brain functioning all while lowering the risk of cancer. Allens Red Kidney Beans are perfect for this.

Yellow and Orange veggies supply your body with Vitamin C and several antioxidants that help maintain a healthy heart and fight harmful free radicals. Mmm… try Allens Cream Style Sweet Corn or Sliced Carrots.

Purple vegetables are rich with antioxidants that support your immune system. Give Freshlike Select Sliced Pickled Beets a try!

 
 

Say Bonjour to the Fresh Taste of Spring

Posted By CookingBelle - May 19th, 2014

 

Spring Salad in Paris

Each spring, my family gets excited about being back outside with friends, in the park for picnics and in the yard for grilling. For me, spring means the return of fresh recipes (using Allens vegetables of course!) and the chance to try something new! It’s actually a fun tradition in our home to try at least a handful of different veggie recipes to kick off the season. This year we’re loving Allens Spring Salad in Paris … it’s an easy salad recipe that is as good as a side as it is as a main course. I know your family will love it too.

Here are some other recipes to try get you started on your new tradition:

 
 

Allens Love Letter

Posted By CookingBelle - April 2nd, 2014

Allens-LoveLetter-April2014

 

Thanks for taking me home again!

 
I just tried your Turnip Greens and I just cried. I know this might sound silly but I lost my grandmother two years ago and thought no one made them like her. You guys are spot on and I am in love with this! Thanks so much for taking me home again.

From: Ashley A. of Portland TN

 

Do you have a love letter of your own? Send it to us, we love to hear how you enjoy Allens Vegetables!

 

 

 

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