Fit Dish Cookbook: Share Your Favorite Healthy Recipe!
I loosely adapted this 3-Bean Turkey Chili from the “Quick & Easy Turkey Chili” recipe in Lighten Up, Y’all (review below)! The variations were because my friend and I are valiantly attempting to use up a ton of the food in our respective pantries before we have to move again. (Such is the life of the nomadic medical student. ._.)
Her recipe is for stovetop chili but I arbitrarily converted it into a crockpot recipe because ain’t nobody got time to stand by the stove to watch it. I have an exam to study for! :O This took all of 5 minutes in terms of prep time. <3
Crockpot 3-Bean Turkey Chili
- 1 14 oz. can black beans
- 1 14 oz. can cannelini beans
- 1 14 oz. can kidney beans
- 1 lb. extra-lean ground turkey
- 2 14.5 oz cans diced tomatoes
- 1 can tomato sauce
- 1 14 oz. bag 3 pepper + onion blend
- 1-2 tsp cumin
- 1-2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp cayenne powder
- 1 tsp chili powder
- 2 bay leaves
- Add all ingredients into a crock pot and give it a couple stirs.
- Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours!
As for my review…
I don’t know about you, but WV + KY both don’t look too “south” to me. (They look at-least-central to me, but what do I know? ._. Despite my 98% in high school U.S. history way back in the day, my geography has never been wonderful.)
Before moving from California to what is apparently considered to be “the South,” my knowledge of what Southern food consisted of stemmed from what I’d seen of Paula Deen’s cooking show on The Food Network whilst doing cardio.
I’ll be honest–I was usually pretty appalled (especially by the amounts of mayo), so I never attempted to make any of it. Since moving out here, however…you gotta know this–nothing says comfort food to warm your soul like Southern fare. :O
Virginia Willis revamps and healthifies a whole lot of different classic southern recipes, and I’m not gonna lie…they look delicious (even the ones with pork or seafood-other-than-fish, which I can’t even eat)! She starts with a little background on herself and her philosophies.
…at the end of the day I’m still a classically trained chef who loves to eat, so if a healthy variation doesn’t taste as good or authentic as the original, well, it didn’t make the cut. Lighten Up, Y’all is not a diet; it’s a way of life.”
The beginning also has a section with 10 tips on lightening things up, and she does a breakdown of different healthy cooking oils/fats. There are different tips here and there on grilling, food prep, spatchcocking, preparing dried beans…etc.
Lighten Up, Y’All has 10 chapters of recipes, accompanied by a serving size, a short introduction, calorie content + macro breakdown (along with fiber content)! I’m highlighting a few from each section for your perusal!
- Starters and Nibblers: Want to make a Sinless Seven-Layer Dip or a Hot Mess Spinach & Feta Dip? What about Cornmeal-Crusted Chicken Bites with Jalapeno Dipping Sauce or a Baked Onion Blossom? This is your section. <3
- Salads and Slaws: Curried Shrimp Salad with Avocado and Orange? Sassy Slaw? (I love that name. 😛 ) Grilled Potato Salad with Bacon Vinaigrette? I can’t eat shrimp or bacon, but the latter tends to be a crowd favorite for most carnivores, so I’m including it so you’ll know it’s there. Personally, I want to try making the Quinoa Cobb Salad with Green Goddess Dressing (whilst subbing the bacon with turkey bacon)!
- From The Garden: This section’s for the vegetarians! The Creamed Corn-Stuffed Tomatoes sound amazing, as does the Green Beans with New Potatoes and Candied Garlic & Brussels Sprouts with Raisins and Pecans.
- Grains, Grits and Other Starchy Goodness: I’m not sure I’m brave enough to try the New Soul Creole Dirty Rice because I’m not a fan of chicken livers, but you can sub with chicken sausage, and suddenly it sounds amazing! The Southern Style Shepherd’s Pie with Grits and Sweet Potato Gratin with Herb Crumble sound awesome.
- Seafood and Shellfish: Pan-Seared Fish Steaks with Cherry Tomatoes & Basil, Citrus-Grilled Shrimp with Bloody Mary Cocktail Sauce, Gulf Coast Seafood Stew?!
- Poultry: The Oven-Fried Chicken-on-a-Stick with Vidalia-Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce sounds awesome, and I can’t til peach season to make the Basil-Peach Chicken Breasts or the Sweet Tea-Brined Turkey Tenderloin with Chile-Peach Glaze! Do not get me started on the Slow-Cooked Barbecue Pulled Chicken. (I adore pulled chicken. <3)
- Pork, Beef and Lamb: If I could eat pork, the Cider-Braised Pork Loin with Apple-Thyme Jus wound sound pretty tasty. There’s also a recipe for Cocoa-Crusted Top Sirloin with Mushrooms, and Coffee-Braised Pot Roast!
- Soups and Stews: The Garlic Chicken and Greens with Cornmeal-Herb Dumplings recipe is a healthy take on Chicken & Dumpling Soup, and the Peach & Tomato Gazpacho with Cucumber-Herb Yogurt would be perfect for summer!
- Biscuits, Bread, and Baked Goods: Buttermilk Biscuits with Turkey Sausage Gravy, and what cookbook on Southern food would be complete with cornbread? (The Vegetable Cornbread looks awesome. :] ) For breakfast-lovers, there’s Multi-Grain Pecan Waffles!
- Sweet Indulgences: Got a sweet tooth? You will adore this section. Citrus Pudding Cakes, a recipe for a Yogurt Piecrust, Chasing the Carrot Cake, Claire’s Cream Cheese Swirl Brownies…nomnomnom. :]
Virginia Willis really does take the title of her book to heart! These recipes truly have been lightened up with wholesome ingredients, and I’m definitely looking forward to trying out more of em’!
Note: I can’t eat pork or seafood other than fish, but each section still contained a lot of recipes I could still partake in (and I’m a big fan of substituting when necessary anyway). I would not recommend this book to vegans, super-strict clean eaters, or anyone with major dietary restrictions (e.g. dairy-free, gluten-free), because you will not get as much bang for your buck!