THE ” F ” WORD…
Not that one, silly. I thought I would take this opportunity to talk a little about FIBER. Eating a diet high in fiber can help prevent many types of diseases, can help lower your blood cholesterol and can also help you lose weight! Fill up on healthy high- fiber foods, and you are much less likely to overindulge on Cheetos and Peanut M&M’s.
The recommended daily fiber level is 30 – 40 grams per day, but most people only get 10 – 15 grams. It is easy to incorporate high fiber foods into your diet. Eat foods that are as close to their natural state as possible – an apple instead of a glass of apple juice is one example. Check out nutritional labels – some types of high fiber pasta have as much as 10 grams of fiber per serving. The best sources of fiber are found in fruits, vegetables, beans, whole grains, and high fiber bran cereals.
I recently discovered that one of my favorite foods is loaded with fiber. Did you know that one medium California avocado has 11.8 grams of fiber! It is also loaded with heart-healthy mono and polyunsaturated fats. It may be higher in calories than most other fruits and vegetables, but it is much lower in calories than other high-fat foods like butter and mayonnaise. Try using it as a substitute for mayonnaise in sandwiches or using avocado in place of oil in a homemade salad dressing.
Chicken Lasagna ~ Nacho Style
Nacho Mama’s Lasagna!
I wouldn’t call cheesy lasagna “diet” food, but this is a little healthier than a big ol’ plate of greasy nachos. If you really want to increase the fiber in this lasagna, add a can of drained black beans to the sauce. One cup of black beans has 14 grams of fiber!
- 12 lasagna noodles
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1 green bell pepper, diced
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp. smoked paprika
- pinch of sugar
- 26 oz. can diced tomatoes, drain off liquid
- 2 Tbsp. tomato paste
- 14.5 oz. jar thick salsa, (I used a chipotle salsa)
- 4 oz.sliced pickled jalapeno, reserve 1 oz.
- 4 oz. sliced black olives, reserve 1 oz.
- 3 cups shredded rotisserie chicken, skin and bones discarded
- hot sauce to taste
- salt and pepper
- 4 cups (total) shredded mozzarella and cheddar cheese
- sliced avocado or guacamole
- green or red onion
- chopped cilantro
- sour cream
- diced fresh tomatoes
- diced pickled pepper
- Cook lasagna noodles in a large pot of boiling salted water, draining the noodles when they are about 3 minutes away from being fully cooked.
- In a large saucepan, cook onion and green pepper until softened. Add the garlic, cumin, and smoked paprika, cook for a couple of minutes.
- Add drained tomatoes, tomato paste, sugar, salsa, jalapenos and olives. Simmer for 10 minutes. Add the shredded chicken. Remove from heat. Season with salt, pepper and hot sauce, to taste.
- Preheat oven to 400F.
- In a 9×13 lightly greased pan spread a little of the sauce on the bottom of pan. Lay 3 noodles lengthwise and one noodle crosswise,, cutting to noodle to fit.Top with 1/3rd of the sauce, one third of the cheese. Continue layering the lasagna until you have 3 layers of noodles, four layers of sauce and three layers of cheese. With the final layer of cheese add the reserved jalapenos and olives.
- Bake uncovered until bubbly and golden, 35-40 minutes. Let stand for at least 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with desired toppings. Serves 6-8