Blog Posts by The Editors of EatingWell Magazine

  • How to Throw a Holiday Party for $25

    How To Throw A Holiday Party For $25By Hilary Meyer, Associate Food Editor, EatingWell Magazine

    I love hanging out with my friends, but I used to avoid throwing parties at my house mostly because I couldn't justify the expense. You have to buy food, booze and make your house look festive. And it all adds up pretty quickly. (Bah! Humbug!) But I can't expect to be invited anywhere if I can't (or don't) return the favor! So how can I have my fun and throw a party that doesn't bust my budget? I'm going to challenge myself to throw a party for only $25. Can it be done? With a little ingenuity, the answer is yes. Here's how:

    1. Dilute the Booze
    OK, so the most expensive part of throwing a party is buying alcohol. It can add up pretty quickly. Instead of serving your guests the cheapest wine or beer available, consider making a mixed drink. Preferably one that calls for just a little bit of booze mixed with other ingredients (not a martini, for example). A spiced wine punch with plenty of fruit or hot apple cider with a

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  • Fast Steak Fajitas with a Convenient Shortcut

    Fast Steak Fajitas with a Convenient ShortcutBy Wendy Ruopp, Managing Editor of EatingWell

    My husband (lovingly) mocks me sometimes for being a wuss about spicy foods-no extra hot sauce for me, thanks. But these South Texas Steak Fajitas from EatingWell magazine are a hit for both of us. The marinade has all kinds of deliciously fresh ingredients, such as jalapeño peppers, onion, cilantro, beer and lime juice that give the steak layers of taste-bud-popping flavor. Plus it calls for a time-saving shortcut: using bottled Italian dressing to bring together the start of your marinade with just one ingredient. And this recipe is so convenient: you can marinate the meat the night before or in the morning. When you're ready to cook, everything goes on the grill for a few minutes, so by the time the tortillas are heated, the fajita fixin's are ready. Everyone can assemble their own dinner to their own taste, with just as much heat as makes them happy.

    Don't Miss: Easy Mexican Food Favorites

    South Texas Steak Fajitas

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  • DIY Oven-Dried Apples and Apple Chips

    DIY Oven-Dried Apples and Apple ChipsDIY Oven-Dried Apples and Apple ChipsBy Stacy Fraser, Test Kitchen Manager at EatingWell

    It's easy to make dried apples and their crispier cousins, apple chips, at home in your oven without a food dehydrator.

    Here's how to do it in a home oven:

    1. Position oven racks in the upper and lower third of the oven; preheat to 200°F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper.

    2. Combine 4 cups water and 1/2 cup lemon juice in a medium bowl. (The lemon juice helps prevent browning.)

    3. Using a sharp knife or a mandoline (if you have one), slice 2 large apples as thin as possible, about 1/8 inch thick. (We skip peeling and coring because we like the look of the dried skins and the pretty pattern the core makes in the center.) Soak the slices in the lemon water for 30 minutes. Drain and pat the slices as dry as possible with paper towels (or clean kitchen towels). Place on the prepared baking sheets in a single layer.

    4. Bake the slices on the upper and lower racks for 1 hour. Remove from the oven and turn each slice over;

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  • 4 of the Healthiest Peanut Butters to Eat

    4 of the Healthiest Peanut Butters4 of the Healthiest Peanut ButtersBy Lisa D'Agrosa, Associate Nutrition Editor, EatingWell Magazine

    More than just a sandwich spread, peanut butter deserves a spot on your menu! Its healthy fats, fiber and protein may help you stave off afternoon hunger pangs, says a new study. But not all peanut butter is created equal. Here are our tips for finding the best peanut butter on the shelf.

    1. Avoid Oil
    Many PBs are still made with hydrogenated oils, which improve the texture but add trans fat. Some replaced those oils with palm oil-a better choice, but high in unhealthy saturated fat. Buy PB with no added oils and stir before spreading.

    2. Skip Added Sugars
    Some PBs provide 3 to 4 grams of added sugars (about 1 teaspoon per 2-tablespoon serving). Sugar may be listed as: evaporated cane juice, corn syrup solids, high-fructose corn syrup, molasses, honey.

    3. Be Wary of "Natural"
    It doesn't mean the PB is without added sugars and oils. True natural PB has just peanuts and maybe a little salt (our

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  • Secrets to Creamy Mac and Cheese Without Cream!

    xBy Hilary Meyer, Associate Food Editor, EatingWell Magazine

    Anything draped in a velvety-smooth cream sauce is bound to be delicious. It's also bound to be high in calories and full of saturated fat-which most of us could do without. So before you kiss your mother's recipe for macaroni and cheese goodbye or take your last spoonful of a creamy, comforting soup, consider that you could make the same creamy recipes with WAY less fat and fewer calories by using no cream at all. Yes, really.

    Chef John Ash developed a no-cream cream sauce for EatingWell Magazine made from simple pantry staples as a way to slash fat and calories from dishes that are usually laden with fat. One cup of his Cream Sauce without the Cream has only 159 calories and 0 grams saturated fat. Compare that to 1 cup of heavy cream, which has 820 calories and 55 grams saturated fat.

    Here are our tips to make a cream sauce without cream.

    1. Use Onions and White Wine to Add Flavor
    Fat has a knack for

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  • 4 Secrets for Healthy, Delicious Chili Recipes

    4 Secrets for Healthy, Delicious Chili Recipes4 Secrets for Healthy, Delicious Chili RecipesBy Hilary Meyer, Associate Food Editor, EatingWell Magazine

    There's nothing more enticing than walking into the kitchen and taking in the heady scent of onion, garlic and chili powder from a big pot of chili bubbling on the stove. And if you're throwing a party, serving up steaming bowls of chili with all the fixings is a fun, casual way to serve a crowd. At your next gathering, serve chili family style-right from the pot-with lots of different toppings. Go for classics, such as cheese, sour cream and hot sauce. Add plenty of fresh options, too: scallions, jalapeños, onion, radishes, avocados and cilantro.

    Worried that chili isn't good for you? Don't be. We've got four tricks to keep it healthy but still hearty:

    1. Start with lean meat (or none at all).

    2. Slip in at least 3 cups of fresh vegetables to boost fiber.

    3. Add whole-grain bulgur to replace some of the meat and slash saturated fat while keeping portion size satisfying.

    4. Watch the salt by choosing

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  • Pizza + Salad = Pizz’alad!

    Pizza + Salad = Pizz'alad!Pizza + Salad = Pizz'alad!By Hilary Meyer, Associate Food Editor, EatingWell Magazine

    My husband, Russ, is a pizza fanatic. A salad glistening with a thin coat of dressing is more up my alley. So to keep us happy, I started making both. Not just pizza with a side of salad, but a pizza that was a salad. A pizz'alad, if you will. A pizza that took the goodness of pizza-a thin crackly crust, the mmmm-inducing pungency of melted cheese-and combined it with the snap of lettuce and the virtues of farm-fresh vegetables. I know it sounds a little weird, but it has been a HUGE hit among my friends and family. It makes for a memorable meal where both pizza lovers and salad lovers can be happy. Top your pizza with salad and serve with icy beer, wine and no-fuss appetizers like olives and you've got a recipe for a relaxed get-together.

    Don't Miss: 6 New Pizz'alad Recipes

    Want to take a stab at making your own pizz'alad? Here's what you need to know.

    1. Have All Your Ingredients Ready
    This is classic

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  • Make Your Own 3-Step Popcorn Chicken at Home

    Make Your Own 3-Step Popcorn Chicken at HomeMake Your Own 3-Step Popcorn Chicken at HomeBy Wendy Ruopp, Managing Editor of EatingWell

    Parenting involves compromises-anyone who's ever had a 3-year-old pass through their lives can attest to that. Of course we hate to compromise when it comes to getting the light of our lives to eat things that are good for them-but when you want to feed them in a restaurant without a fuss, you're grateful to the inventor of popcorn chicken.

    Don't Miss: More Fast & Healthy Family-Friendly Dinners

    Learning how to turn chicken breast into a fun-sounding meal can save your sanity at home, too, and for less money and more nutrition. And with EatingWell's recipe for Popcorn Chicken, it's so easy you won't even consider using frozen tenders. A fan who commented on our recipe for Spicy Pecan Popcorn Chicken on said: "My whole family loves this meal. My husband asks me to make it at least once a week. My two-year-old is a very picky eater, but, when I make this he eats it all and wants more. It's so easy and quick."

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  • A Week of Clean-Eating Dinners

    A Week of Clean-Eating DinnersBy Hilary Meyer, Associate Food Editor, EatingWell Magazine

    I'm trying to give my eating habits a little cleanup this year. I'm cutting back on saturated fat, refined grains, processed foods, sugar and salt. It's easy to pay close attention to what I'm eating on the weekends when I've got tons of time on my hands to prepare delicious meals, but during the week when time is less available I feel the pull of convenience foods for their, well, convenience.

    Don't Miss: 30-Minute Clean-Eating Recipes for Fast Dinners

    But you can eat clean on the weekdays if you keep a few tips (and some easy, healthy recipes) on hand. Here's what I try to live by when all I have is 30 minutes to prepare a "clean" meal:

    1. Rely on Quick-Cooking Whole Grains
    Trying to eat clean means avoiding refined grains like white pasta, white bread and white rice in favor of whole grains. Unfortunately, a lot of whole grains take close to an hour to cook, which isn't ideal when you're in a rush. You have

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  • Meat-Lover’s Quinoa Veggie Burger

    Meat-Lover's Quinoa Veggie BurgerBy Wendy Ruopp, Managing Editor of EatingWell

    This quinoa veggie burger recipe is a meat-lover's burger: toasted pecans, mushrooms, Cheddar cheese, fresh herbs and red quinoa pack this vegetarian burger full of delicious flavor. It's one of the new tasty quinoa recipes I liked from the last issue of EatingWell Magazine, so I was happy when my husband surprised me by saying, "Let's make these quinoa veggie burgers." (He's mostly a don't-fence-me-in creator in the kitchen, but he was so inspired by that delicious-looking photo that he was willing to follow a recipe for a change.)

    New Recipes to Try: Quinoa Lasagna & 19 Easy Quinoa Recipes

    These quinoa veggie burgers are worth following a recipe for. Not only are they simple to put together, but you can make your time in the kitchen go even further by freezing part of the batch you make for a future meal. And if you can find red quinoa, they will be especially beautiful. The quinoa takes just 15 minutes, unattended, to cook;

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