Author: Andrea D’Ambrosio, RD

Canned vegetables

Are Canned Vegetables Healthy?

Are canned vegetables healthy? This is a common question at Dietetic Directions, especially prevalent this time of year as we transition out of summer and into fall harvest. Different vegetables are available such as potatoes, squash, carrots, beets and cabbage. Unfortunately, many of our favourites like peaches, green beans and corn on the cob are no longer in season. Nevertheless, canned vegetables and legumes can be a healthy and affordable alternative. In case you missed it, you can also opt for frozen vegetables – see past blog, Are Frozen Vegetables Better than Fresh?.  Fall is here which means seasonal vegetables are available! Read on to learn why canned...

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Pesto Pasta Salad

Chickpea, Feta & Pesto Pasta Salad

Got lunchbox blues? It can be tough to come up with lunch ideas; especially ones that don’t take an exorbitant amount of time. Not like this chickpea, feta and pesto pasta salad. It's quick and easy. With busy schedules, many of our clients wonder what they can prep ahead so they can grab and go in the rushed morning. In my newest blog, Reinvent Dinners into Unique Lunches, I share how to save time by swapping components of your dinner to create different lunches. One of the recipes featured was this Chickpea, Feta Pesto Pasta Salad.  I’ve always loved a cold pasta salad. It’s fresh, simple and satisfying. If...

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Italian Salmon Wraps

Italian-Style Salmon Wraps

I’m an enormous fan of delectable food made with simple ingredients. This is also the way I grew up in my Italian-Canadian family. Additionally, I quickly discovered ample meals can be made using olive oil, red wine vinegar and parsley. Here are some of my favourites from the Dietetic Directions blog: Italian-style Romano Beans, Caprese Salad and Hard-Cooked Eggs with chives or parsley. Today’s Italian-Style Salmon Wraps recipe is a quick and easy back-to-school or work lunch that can be prepared in advance or in a hurry. It’s also a great option for a fast and filling weekend lunch.  DYK: This recipe uses canned salmon, which is wild...

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Caprese Spinach Salad

Caprese Spinach Salad

One of my favourite parts of summer is planting a modest herb garden. I love to watch plants grow and have flavour-boosting additions for foods. Additionally, colourful herbs add bright green colours to my Instagram food photos. Nevertheless, by late August, I have ample fresh basil, Italian parsley and cherry tomatoes to add to meals. This means that Caprese Salads come top of mind. Today’s Caprese Spinach salad is simple salad packed with flavour. Hope you enjoy this meal addition or perhaps you can bring it to your next potluck.  Foodie Note: Curious what I plant in my garden? Check out my Top 5 Must-Have Garden Herbs blog. Serves: 2-4 Prep time: 10...

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Reinvent Dinner to Lunches

Reinvent Dinner into Unique Lunches!

It’s back-to-school or back-to-work from the cottage time! 'Tis also the dreaded lunch-box dilemma time. Are you wondering what to make? Not to worry. We got you. Let’s ward off tuna sandwich boredom or resorting to expensive takeout by instead learning how to reinvent dinner into unique lunches. After all, the fall season reinvigorates people to start fresh with dietary and lifestyle changes. Therefore, let’s take a spin on dinners by transforming them into scrumptious lunches! These time-saving strategies will have you cooking once but eating twice or three times.   Transforming dinners into unique and scrumptious lunches is a reinvigorating strategy for fall! If you’re worried about being bored...

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Zesty Black Bean Guacamole

Black Bean Guacamole

Ready to guacamole it up? For me, this was one of my most intimidating dishes years ago. I wasn’t sure how to choose the right avocado, how to cut it, how to balance flavours for right zing! Nevertheless, to boost my cooking confidence, I started practicing and taking regular cooking classes (for about 7 years now.) Guacamole is now one of my favourites to make and with persistence you can feel comfortable tasting and adjusting as you go! This Zesty Black Bean Guacamole recipe is remarkably versatile - it can be served on toast with eggs, in tacos, fajitas, quesadillas or served with crackers and raw veggies.  If...

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Summer motivation

5 Ways to Maintain Summer Motivation

It’s hard to maintain summer motivation! The weather is warm, the beach is calling and cottage meals are on the mind. With all of the welcomed indulgences of the season, it can be difficult to sustain motivation for our healthier lifestyle goals. Workouts get skipped, meals don’t get planned and food isn’t prepped for the busy workweek ahead.  Today’s blog is on 5 Ways to Maintain Summer Motivation (despite our inevitable challenges). By keeping our momentum in the summer, we can slide smoothly right on into the fall season without feeling like we've regressed in progress.  5 Ways to Maintain Summer Motivation: 1. Think long-term. Starting a new habit can be less challenging...

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Zesty Chicken Satay

Zesty Chicken Satay with Peanut Sauce

Potluck season is upon us! This calls for hand-held options to eat while socializing, like this Zesty Chicken Satay with a peanut dipping sauce. A satay is an Indonesian dish that uses seasoned, grilled meat on a skewer. Absolutely love this recipe because it is one you can make ahead or marinate overnight if you wish. You can BBQ or grill the Chicken Satay in advance or you can bring them to grill at the party or when guests arrive. This is also an excellent cottage meal (click here to read my 5 Make-Ahead Cottage Meals). Finally, the peanut sauce is a mouth-watering addition! Peanuts are...

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A Dietitian's Perspective on Weight Loss Apps

A Dietitian’s Perspective on Weight Loss Apps

~Exploring Pro’s & Con’s~  Do weight loss apps work? Many clients wonder if apps such as My Fitness Pal can actually help them lose weight. They also query if weight loss apps can serve a useful purpose in terms of improving their nutriton. Today, I will be “weighing in” on weight loss apps and exploring the pro’s and con's along with the potential role and risk they play in healthy eating. Before reading, keep in mind that health decisions need to be individualized. What works for someone else may not work for you. Consider consulting with a registered dietitian and/or your doctor. Whether you are looking to lose weight or...

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