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Each recipe clocks in around 300 calories. Get your morning started the right way.Banana-Walnut Pancakes
Combine 1/3 cup just-add-water whole-grain pancake mix and 1/3 cup water; stir in 1/2 banana, diced, and 5 chopped walnut halves. Mist a nonstick skillet with cooking spray and heat over medium-high heat. Spoon batter into skillet to make 2 pancakes and cook for 2 minutes a side, or until golden. Top with 2 tablespoons 2 percent plain Greek yogurt, 2 teaspoons maple syrup, and 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon.Mango-Oat Smoothie
In a blender, puree 1 cup water, one 6-ounce container 2 percent plain Greek yogurt, 1/2 cup fresh or frozen mango chunks, 1/2 cup fresh or frozen sliced strawberries, 1/2 cup chopped kale leaves, and 1/3 cup rolled oats until smooth.Avocado Eggs Benedict
Mash together 1/3 avocado, juice from 1/2 lemon, and 1/8 teaspoon dried dill. Top 1/2 toasted whole-grain English muffin with avocado mixture, 1 tomato slice, 1 slice warmed Canadian bacon, and 1 poached egg; season with salt and pepper.Quinoa Breakfast Bowl
Stir together 1/2 cup warm cooked quinoa, 1/2 cup chopped pear, and 2 teaspoons honey or agave nectar. Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons sunflower seeds and 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon.Kale-and-Egg Breakfast Wrap
Mist a nonstick skillet with cooking spray and heat over medium heat. Saute 1/4 cup chopped onion and 1 cup thinly sliced kale leaves for 4 minutes. Beat 1 egg with 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes and a pinch of salt and pepper and pour over kale; scramble until eggs are set. Spoon egg mixture into center of a warmed 8-inch whole-grain tortilla. Top with 2 sliced cherry tomatoes and 1 tablespoon crumbled goat cheese and fold like a burrito.
Avoid a midday slump with these lunches -- each meal is about 400 calories.Kale Grilled Cheese
Mist a nonstick skillet with cooking spray and heat over medium-high heat. Saute 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic, 1 chopped artichoke heart, and 1 cup thinly sliced kale leaves for 4 minutes, or until kale wilts. Top each of 2 slices sprouted whole-grain bread with 1 slice 2 percent cheddar and divide kale mixture between the two. Mist same skillet with cooking spray, heat over medium heat, add bread and cook for 3 minutes, or until cheese melts and underside is golden. Press slices together to make a sandwich and serve with 14 baby carrots and 1 tablespoon hummus.Shrimp Tacos with Avocado Dressing
In a nonstick skillet, heat 1 teaspoon coconut or canola oil and 1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes over medium heat. Add 6 peeled and deveined large shrimp and saute for 2 to 3 minutes, or until opaque. Mash together 1/3 avocado, juice of 1 lime, and 1/4 cup chopped cilantro; season with salt and pepper. Divide shrimp, 1/2 cup broccoli slaw, and avocado dressing between 2 warmed corn tortillas. Serve with 1/2 mango, cubed.Edamame Sushi Bowl
Whisk together 2 teaspoons reduced-sodium soy sauce, 1 teaspoon honey, 1 teaspoon rice wine vinegar and 1/4 teaspoon minced ginger. Arrange 1/2 cup warm cooked brown rice, 1/2 cup warm shelled edamame, 1/2 cup shredded carrots, 1/2 cup cucumber slices cut into matchsticks, and 1/3 avocado, diced, in a bowl. Top with soy sauce mixture and 1 sheet toasted nori seaweed cut into 1/4-inch strips.Chickpea-and-Walnut-Stuffed Pita
Combine 1/3 cup 2 percent plain Greek yogurt, 1/3 cup grated English cucumber, 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice, and 1 teaspoon dried dill; season with salt and pepper. Toss together 1 cup chopped romaine lettuce, 1/3 cup rinsed and drained canned chickpeas, 2 tablespoons finely diced red onion, and 2 tablespoons chopped walnuts. Cut a whole-grain pita in half; fill each half with salad mixture and top with yogurt sauce.Chicken, Feta, and Strawberry Salad
Whisk together 1 tablespoon 2 percent plain Greek yogurt, 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard, 1 teaspoon honey, and 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice; season with salt and pepper. Toss together 3 cups baby spinach, 3 ounces sliced grilled chicken breast, 1 cup sliced strawberries, 2 tablespoons sunflower seeds, 1 tablespoon crumbled feta, and yogurt dressing until well combined.
Ace your evening meal with these 500-calorie recipes.Kale Caesar Salad with Grilled Chicken
Whisk together 2 tablespoons 2 percent plain Greek yogurt, 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar, 1/4 teaspoon minced garlic, 1/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard, and 1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce. Toss together 3 cups thinly sliced kale leaves, 2 tablespoons shredded Parmesan, 3 ounces sliced grilled chicken breast, and yogurt dressing. Top with 1 toasted whole-grain pita torn into small pieces.Peanutty Soba Noodles with Edamame
Cook 2 ounces soba noodles according to package directions. Heat 1 teaspoon olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add 1/2 cup red bell pepper strips, 1/2 cup thinly sliced carrot, 1/2 cup broccoli florets, and 1/4 cup shelled frozen edamame and cook for 6 minutes, or until vegetables are crisp-tender. Whisk together 1 1/2 tablespoons smooth natural peanut butter, 1 1/2 tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar, and a pinch of cayenne pepper. Toss together noodles, vegetables, and peanut butter mixture. Garnish with 1/2 teaspoon sesame seeds.Turkey Chili Fries
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Mist a baking sheet with cooking spray. Cut 1 medium potato into 1/2-inch-thick strips, arrange in a single layer on baking sheet, mist with cooking spray and bake for 30 minutes, flipping halfway through. In a skillet over medium heat, cook 4 ounces 99 percent fat-free ground turkey, 1 tablespoon taco seasoning, and 2 tablespoons water for 4 minutes, or until turkey is cooked through, breaking up chunks with a wooden spoon. Add 1/2 cup diced green bell pepper and 1/4 cup rinsed and drained canned kidney beans and saute for 4 minutes more. Top potatoes with turkey mixture; 1/4 cup shredded cheddar; 1/2 cup diced tomato; 1/2 green onion, thinly sliced; and 2 tablespoons 2 percent plain Greek yogurt.Walnut-Crusted Tilapia with Cranberry Barley and Garlic Green Beans
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Place 5 ounces tilapia on a foil-lined baking sheet. Spread 2 teaspoons honey Dijon mustard over fish and press 1 tablespoon finely chopped walnuts into mustard. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, or until fish flakes easily with a fork. Meanwhile, toss 3/4 cup warm cooked barley with 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar, 1 tablespoon dried cranberries, and 1/2 green onion, thinly sliced. Heat 2 teaspoons olive oil and 1 teaspoon minced garlic in a skillet over medium heat. Add 1 cup green beans and saute for 6 minutes, or until crisp-tender; season with salt and pepper.Apricot-and-Cinnamon-Glazed Pork with Roasted Vegetables
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Mist a baking sheet with cooking spray; arrange 1 cup quartered brussels sprouts and 1 cup quartered fingerling potatoes in a single layer on sheet. Mist with cooking spray, season with salt and pepper, and bake for 30 minutes, flipping halfway through. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add 4 ounces lean pork tenderloin and cook for 3 to 4 minutes a side, or until internal temperature reaches 145 degrees. Whisk together 2 tablespoons 100 percent fruit apricot preserves, 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar, and 2 teaspoons cinnamon. Coat pork with apricot mixture and cook for 2 minutes more.
Eat two of these 150-calorie options each day.
1 ounce Rhythm Superfoods Honey Mustard Kale Chips
Ginger-wasabi trail mix: Chop 6 pieces candied ginger and mix with 2 tablespoons Seapoint Farms Spicy Wasabi Dry Roasted Edamame
2 tablespoons Eat Well Enjoy Life Edamame Hummus with 1 cup jicama sticks
Cinnamon-sugar popcorn: Mist 3 cups air-popped popcorn with cooking spray and toss with 2 teaspoons brown sugar and 1 tablespoon cinnamon
Sunflower seed chocolate bark: Microwave 2 tablespoons chocolate chips until melted. Pour chocolate onto a plate lined with parchment paper, sprinkle with 1 tablespoon sunflower seeds and refrigerate for 10 minutes, or until set
1 cup apple slices spread with 1 tablespoon sunflower seed butter
1/4 cup The Good Bean Sweet Cinnamon Roasted Chickpea Snacks
Mini cheese plate: Arrange 4 walnut halves, 1/2-ounce wedge Havarti, and 12 grapes on a plate
Chocolate chip-dipped strawberries: Stir 1 tablespoon mini chocolate chips into 1/2 cup vanilla 2 percent Greek yogurt; use as a dip for 6 strawberries
Avocado tartine: Spread 1/3 avocado, mashed, onto 1 Wasa Crispbread, season with salt and pepper and serve with 8 grape tomatoes
If your body were an engine, the foods highlighted in our recipes would be high-octane gasoline. Here's why:
Kale: The healthy plant nitrates in this leafy green increase blood flow to tired muscles.
Cinnamon: This spice has been shown to regulate your blood sugar, meaning that your energy level won't spike only to come crashing down.
Yogurt: Even a slight vitamin B12 deficiency can make you feel zonked. Luckily, one cup of yogurt fulfills nearly half your daily quota.
Strawberries: They're 92 percent water, which (duh!) staves off energy-zapping dehydration.
Walnuts: Omega-3s lower fatigue-inducing inflammation; walnuts are the only nuts that contain a significant amount of them.
Edamame: Iron transports oxygen throughout your body, and these are packed with the mineral as well as with vitamin C, which helps your body absorb it.
Sunflower seeds: These are a top source of magnesium, a mineral that helps you work out harder and longer.
Avocados: Their folate and vitamin B6 are key for converting food into fuel. Bonus: The nutrients may also boost your mood.
Originally published in FITNESS magazine, February 2014.