Pork Loin Chops with Cinnamon Apples and Squash

Fall is officially here and what better way to jump in then with seasonal vegetables like squash and apples! This recipe was inspired by one of my favorite Food Network stars, Rachael Ray. Tammy and I are constantly inspired by her vibrant personality and deliciously simple recipes. I tried Rachel’s Apple Juice Pork a few years ago and fell in love with it, so easy and so tasty. I love the contrast of tart, yet sweet, apples with pork as well, so added that in with brown sugar and cinnamon. Pork loin is a great lean, white meat alternative to chicken, and it goes especially well with these cozy Fall flavors. Try it this week!

-Mel

Health tips: Low fat, anti-inflammatory, heart healthy, low carb

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Tuscan Panzanella Salad with Homemade Grilled Croutons

I thought this summer weather would die down and I’d be on to making hearty, warmer dishes like slow-cooker meals, soups and stews. Well, I was wrong. We had a heat-wave once again. I remembered a while back my hubby ate out and said he had an amazing “salad with bread in it” (aka panzanella). When he told me what was in it, my wheels started turning and I immediately thought of this salad. I am a huge fan of making your own salad dressings. They are just better! You can control the amount of sugar and salt. I always have homemade on hand and if I do not, I’m able to whip some up in just a few minutes. So here is what I came up with when my hubby asked me to re-create the dish. Even though I haven’t tasted the restaurant’s version, mine was pretty darn good, if I say so myself. My brother-in-law was over and really enjoyed it as well! So raise your glass to this yummy and filling salad! CHEERS!

-Tammy

Health tips:  Heart healthy, kidney friendly

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Spanish Paella…Ella…Ella

I absolutely love big one pot meals, especially for the family or a small dinner party! This recipe combines hearty flavors of traditional Spanish Paella, while still keeping it light. If you like Jambalaya, this is very similar, a mix of delicious “land and sea” meats, rice, peppers and spice! I had some amazing Paella at a friend’s going away party a few weeks ago and the wheels started turning in my head. Hope you enjoy!

-Mel

Health tips: Low fat

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Cozy Crockpot Beef Stroganoff

OooOooh Fall you are almost here, my favorite time of year…cooler days, Autumn colors, pumpkin-spiced everything, scarves, Halloween, Oktoberfest, birthdays, the list goes on and on. I know it’s still warm here in Cali during the day but the nights are getting cooler. Cozy, yet light, comfort food could not come any sooner. Here’s my take on a healthier version of a crowd favorite, Beef Stroganoff!

-Mel

Health tips: Low fat, kid friendly

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Kick-It-Up-A-Notch Caesar Salad with Parmesan Crisps

As we close with the last few weeks of summer, I decided to make a healthier version of Caesar salad. My hubby and I recently had our 10 year anniversary. We went out to dinner to a new restaurant and had a delicious Caesar salad. But what made it so special was that it had fried capers and little pieces of prosciutto in the salad! Those two extra ingredients really made the salad unique! As soon as I had it, I knew I had to re-make it into a healthier version by using my favorite go-to salad dressing. It’s made with yogurt! It’s low in calories, fat, sodium, sugar, has no preservatives, and has no artificial colors or flavors. You can find it in the refrigerated section in the produce department. Make your own whole grain croutons, if possible. I highly suggest it! (recipe to follow soon) And for a little extra indulgence, make my Parmesan crisps. So go ahead, have a Caesar salad without the guilt!

-Tammy

Health tips: Low carb, low fat, heart healthy, diabetes friendly

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Honey-Glazed Chicken Satay Skewers with Spicy Peanut Sauce

Happy Labor Day from Family Apron! This holiday marks the last official summer gathering for many, so why not grill some more before Fall comes around!? Get together with family and friends this holiday weekend and try this recipe for Glazed Chicken Sate Skewers with Peanut Sauce! The chicken is tastier and more tender the more you let it marinate, so start early! Thank you to the amazing Ellie Krieger for your inspiration on this one!

Tip: If you have leftovers, shred or chop chicken and mix with some greens and peanut sauce. This makes a yummy salad or wrap!

-Mel

Health tips: Anti-inflammatory, low carb, low fat, heart healthy, kid friendly

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Prosciutto-Wrapped Shrimp, Arugula Salad with Grilled Lemon Vinaigrette, Oh… and Brown Rice Pilaf

I’ve made so many seafood dinners recently. But I can’t help it…it’s summer! There’s something about the summer and seafood (and wine); they just go together. You can make such light, healthy meals with seafood. And my shrimp salad is the perfect meal for warmer seasons (but please, feel free to make it whenever you’d like). Whether you make this on an indoor or outdoor grill, this meal is totally satisfying. This dinner may look super fancy, but it’s super easy to make. And the shrimp is full of flavor! Cheers to a great, healthy dinner!

-Tammy

Health tips:  Diabetes friendly, kidney friendly

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