Summer Caprese Bowl

Under 400 calories,   this summer caprese bowl with a peachy sauce is inspired by a dated but delicious food memory.Summer CapreseSalad (1)This summer I did not budge from Wrightsville Beach, NC. IMG_0979_edited-2It’s not as liesurely as it  sounds (or looks). Let me assure you, I have not adopted the lifestyle of a wahine,  and I did not trade in my running shoes for a long board or even a paddle board.  Please do not call it  a staycation. It was a whirlwind of business and activity, from  my day job as a dietitian/nutritionist working in my private practice,  to my on call responsibilites managing a property at the beach. I loved each and everyone of  my guests, but if I said, I’m sorry  the tourist season is over,  I’d be deserving of four


So this month’s Recipe Redux theme: a vacation inspired recipe,  comes from a not so recent trip. Some of my fondest memories are  traveling in the summer with my kids while they played junior golf. I ‘m not just unpacking memories, I’m digging deep into the achives… July 2008 when my son played in the US Junior Amateur Championship, sponsored by the United States Golf Association…IMG_4348 Boomer was sixteen, a rising sophmore at Laney High School.  He  was fortunate enough to have our friend and  club pro, Sara Bush  serve as a loyal caddie! The three of us loaded my SUV and drove fourteen hours to the event held here at …
IMG_4347_edited-1 Shoal Creek Golf Club,  Birmingham,  Alabama. My son (and all the junior golfers inlcuding the now PGA stars Jordan Spieth, and Emilio Grillo) were treated like tour pros and had terrific access to the club and it’s amenities, including meals. Parents paid for food, but were happy to have the convenience, not to mention the spread and hospitality this private club is know for!  Boomer and Sara ate quickly as they were focused on the difficulties of the course and the competition.  I  on the other hand, spent more time enjoying the food, and I distinctly remember the ginormous platers of roasted summer vegetables and a peach vinaigrette.  So today I’m combing these two food memories, into a balanced meal served in a bowl; cause that’s how we roll in 2016!

I love the tastye  and the nutritional profile  of this meal which meets my goal  to consume 30 grams of protein, along with plenty of veggies  and a  whole grain. Rememeber,  you don’t  always have to start from scratch. Using  leftovers makes putting together healthy and delicious combos, quick and easy;  I used grilled chicken and quinoa from last night in this bowl.IMG_4523_edited-1

CALORIES: 380; FAT 15 grams (3.9 sat, mono 6.2, poly 2.5) ; PROTEIN 33 grams; CARB 32 grams; FIBER 5 grams; SUGARS 7 grams; CHOL 70 mg; IRON 4.49 mg; SODIUM 553mg; CALCIUM 179 mg

Be sure to check out the links at the bottom of this post to see what vacation memories are inspiring my colleagues recipes this month!


Summer Caprese Bowl

by Diane Boyd, MBA, RD, LDN

Ingredients (serves 2)

  • 1 cup cooked quinoa
  • 2 cup fresh greens (romaine, red leaf lettuce, arugula)
  • 1 charred grilled zucchini (about 1 cup)
  • 1 oz. part skim mozzarella cheese
  • 1 tablespoon fresh basil
  • 6 ounces grilled chicken, sliced

for the peach vinaigrette

  • 1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon fresh chopped thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon honey
  • 1/2 ripe peach, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon EVOO


for the peach vinaigrette

Combine all ingredients except the oil in a blender. blend until combined. Allow to sit about 15 minutes. Slowly add EVOO to blender and combine.

1. In two bowls arrange cooked quinoa, lettuces, zucchini, basil, grilled chicken, torn mozzarella cheese. Drizzle with peach vinaigrette dressing.

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‘Gold Medal’ Strawberry Kiwi Pie

Win over your guests with a dessert that adds color to your table, is light yet nutrient rich, and has a  sweet tropical taste.GOld Meal

Disclosure : I received free samples of Zespri SunGold Kiwifruit mentioned in this post. By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by Zespri KiwiFruit and I am eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time.

This week I’ve be obsessed with watching the Olympics. Go USA! And I’ve scored a little gold of my own..

IMG_4669 Zespri SunGold KiwiFruit;  the fruit sensation that’s blowing up the culinary world  with a superior eating experience! What’s different about Zespri SunGold Kiwifruit? Here’s the scoop…

1. Zespri SunGold KiwiFruit is hairless, sporting the trendy look of smooth skin (no shaving necessary).  The hairless Zespri SunGold kiwifruit will also suprise you with what’s inside: they’re yellow!  Zespri SunGold kiwis have a juicy, yellow flesh and a sweeeet tropical taste!

2. Zespri SunGold KiwiFruit requires no peeling! Of course, you can still peel them, but it’s optional!  Cut one in half with a knife and scoop with a spoon for a  portable snack.

3. Zespri  KiwiFruit is a meat tenderizer. Both green and SunGold Kiwifruit contain an enzyme call actinidin that helps break down protein. Peeled  and mashed,   kiwifruit can be   spread over meat or used to make a kiwifruit marinade.

4. Zespri KiwiFruit  are a delicious source of micronutrients including an excellent source of both vitamin C and potassium. SunGold is also a good source of vitamin E.

5. Zespri fruit is the best tasting kiwi; an attribute achieved through a measure called called the brix. With Zespri fruit you can taste the difference.

It was just the other day I was desperate for a festive summer dessert for my fitness savvy friends, when I  created this  golden pie
IMG_4714and took  a victory lap! Each delicious slice has only 200 calories; is low in fat ( 4.5 grams of fat/serving); low in cholesterol (20 mg cholesterol /serving); low in sodium (35 mg sodium/serving);   a source of fiber (3 grams fiber/serving);  provides  70 % of the Daily Value for vitamin C. It’s also vegetarian and  gluten free helping you to  meet the varying dietary requests of your guests  and  be assured a little GOLD of your own!

Gold Medal Strawberry Kiwi  Pie

serves 8

by Diane Boyd, MBA, RD, LDN


    for the pie crust

    • 2 cups of cooked tricolor quinoa
    • 1 large egg
    • 3/4 cup shredded coconut + plus more for garnish
    • cooking spray

    for the pie filling

    • 2 Zespri Sungold Kiwi
    • 2 cups fresh strawberries + 6 berries halved
    • 1/2 cup sugar
    • 1 teaspoon fresh squeezed lime juice
    • 1 cup cold water
    • 4 Tablespoons cornstarch
    • lime zest


    for the pie crust

    1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

    2 . Combine cooked quinoa, egg and coconut in a bowl. Stir well to combine.

    3. Press mixture into the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch pie plate coated with cooking spray. Bake for 20 minutes. Allow to cool completely.

    for the filling

    1. Peel one kiwi and slice into rounds. Arrange on the cooled baked shell. Add in 6 strawberry halves.

    2. Puree two cups of strawberries in a blender or food processor. Stir in sugar. Add in fresh lime juice.

    3. Add cornstarch to cold water and stir until well blended.

    4. Add cornstach mixture to pureed berries in a microwave safe bowl. Heat gently until mixture begins to thicken. (Time will vary depending on microwave.) Start by heating for one minute, then stir mixture. Heat for a second minute. Stir. (It took mine 5 minutes to reach thick consistency.)

    5. Pour pureed fruit into the pie shell, over kiwi slices and strawberry halves.

    6. Peel and slice second kiwi, arranging slices on top of pie. Refrigerate until chilled. Top with shredded coconut flakes and lime zest.

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    Mango Tango Summer Salad

    Tropical grown mango pairs with local garden vegetables for a bright, delicious and nutritious salad.Magno Tango (3) I usually  get inspiration from foodie magazines like Cooking Light and Donna Hay, food photos in blogs and social media and from other RDs/RDNs (especially members of the Recipe Redux). But today’s source of inspiration is different. It’s  even a bit quirky. You see, Mango Tango is the last doggie shampoo I used to bathe my pups, and dang if I can get these words to stop runnin’ through my head. No, I’m not  using shampoo in my recipe! I’m using fresh mango; a  tropical fruit that’s available year round.

    If you live in the U.S. you won’t get mangos in your CSA box (unless you live in Florida, California, Hawaii, or Puerto Rico. ) Don’t fret! You can eat well by eating foods grown in diverse soils and climates, and if you want  BIG variety, it’s prudent to do so. (For more on this topic, I refer you to this post written by my friend and colleague Regan Jones, Why I Don’t Always Buy Local Produce .)

    Mango is versatile and adds delicious flavor to a balanced diet. Here’s a graphic  about the nutritional highlights of mango..Nutrition_Graphic_2016_Eng_682x370-1BTW, I also like  dried mango, and have used it  in this recipe  for Chicken Satay with Coconut and Mango Jasmine Rice and in this one  for Mango Curry Granola.

    Today’s recipe uses the fresh  fruit  and pairs it with  cucumber and cherry tomatoes,  from my very own garden. You can cut the recipe in half if your cooking for two, like I am most days. I hope you enjoy this salad as much as I do. Mango. Tango.


    Mango Tango Summer Salad

    by Diane Boyd

    Ingredients (serves 4)

    • 6 cups mixed salad greens (romaine, red leaf lettuce, arugula)
    • 1/2 red onion, sliced
    • 1/2 cup cucumber slices
    • 1 red pepper, sliced
    • 1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes
    • 1 fresh mango, peeled and cut into long slices
    • 2 tablespoons dried sweetened cranberries

    for the vinaigrette

    • 1 1/2 tablespoon raspberry infused white balsamic vinegar
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1-2 teaspoons sugar
    • 2 tablespoons canola oil
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    Watermelon Feta Kabobs

    North Carolina grown watermelon tastes delicious paired with salty feta cheese and fresh basil. Thread all 3 ingredients onto a wooden skewer for a quick and healthy (20)

    I hope you’re enjoying a myriad of  summer fruits and vegetables from the market, your CSA box, or a plot of dirt out back. If so, you’re going to relish this month’s Recipe Redux. Here’s our challenge

    Get Your Fruits and Veggies in Shape


    With produce galore, now’s a great time to enjoy lots of fruits and vegetables. Show us how you’re serving the bounty of gardens and orchards in shapes like ribbons, noodles, cut-outs, or other creative cuts.

    Creatvie cuts..hmm. Not my strong suit. Therefore, I have one regret after reading this theme-> I still don’t own a spiralizer! But the show must go on so I bring you thisAttachment-1-2

    watermelon cut into circles with a biscuit cutter and threaded onto skewkers alternating with chunks of feta cheese, and basil. (You can use cookie cutters to make any shape you desire and taylor to the theme of your party.) They make cute appetizers and help keep your summer entertaining menu light with only 76 calories and 3 grams of protein per kabob.  These are going to be perfect snacks for me on this hot July afternoon. Be sure to check out the links at the bottom of this post to see how my colleagues are getting their summer fruits and veggies in shape.


    Watermelon Feta Kabobs

    by Diane Boyd

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Ingredients (10-12)

    • 1 personal watermelon
    • 6- 8 ounces feta cheese, cut into 1″ squares
    • fresh basil leaves


    • chef’s knife
    • 10 wooden skewers
    • 1 inch biscuit cutter


    1. Place melon on a cutting board and using a chef’s knife, cut melon in half.

    2. Working with one half of the melon at a time, place watermelon on cutting board cut side down. Trim away the rind with a chef’s knife.

    3. Cut the watermelon into 1 inch thick slices.

    4. Put out circles with buscuit cutter.

    5. Alternate watermelon, feta cheese and basil on each skewer. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

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    Rehydrate, Refresh, and Relax with the Power of Cranberry

    Cranberry juice ice cubes are a refreshing way to add a cranberry twist to  plain water or other  beverages  and reap the benefits of this amazing fruit. (19)
    Disclosure: The Cranberry Institute has sent me research updates, cranberry tips, some seasonal recipes as well as cranberry juice cocktail and a Flamen Fast Release Ice Cube Tray. In exchange, I’m  sharing  some of this information with you.  I was not financially compensated to write this post. Opinions are my own.

    This is actually my latest beverage related obsession, and it began with a nifty ice cube tray that makes four  2-inch ice balls. Do they look like gigantic cranberries, or what !?!???..IMG_4538Each ice cube ball has  about 1/4 cup of juice,  providing approximatley  30 calories.  I love the   twist of cranberry flavor they add to my water,  and the health benefits of proanthocyanidins PACs.image008

    Aside from adding to my  plan water, here are some ways I like to rehydrate, refresh and relax with the power of cranberry:

    cranberry juice ice balls + pomegranate berry flavored sparkling water

    cranberry juice balls + tangerine lime flavored sparkling water

    cranberry juice balls + light lemonadeIMG_4556

    Whether you’re rehydrating from exercise, or kickin’ back on the porch these cranberry ice cubes will add a delicious twist to your refreshment. IMG_4558

     What cranberry juice cocktail combos to you like?


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