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Nutritious Meals and Snacks During the Spring Holidays

Posted on 4/6/2012 by Patricia Bannan // Filed in New Flavors, Nutrition, SnackJoy, Snacks // Leave a Comment

Fresh Strawberries

Depending on where you live, it may seem like it has been forever since you’ve had a warm, sunny day to appreciate! Fortunately, spring is here to replace the winter doldrums. Let’s ring in the season with some great produce options that are ripe for the picking!

Strawberries: Although we think of berries as a summer fruit, a relatively mild winter in some parts of the US has lead to an early strawberry season this year. One cup of strawberries has more than 100 percent of your daily value of Vitamin C and just 50 calories. For breakfast, try a toasted whole-grain bagel with one wedge of The Laughing Cow Smooth Sensations Cream Cheese Spread Classic Cream 1/3 Less Fat and top with diced strawberries. By using natural fruit, you get all the sweetness of jam and no added sugars or preservatives—not to mention a little fiber boost! If you get a deal buying in bulk, you can wash, trim, and freeze any extras to use in smoothies.

Artichokes: They are easier than they look!  Artichokes are much more affordable and widely available during spring months, so it’s the perfect time to give them a try if you’re looking to add something fun to your dinner repertoire.  It’s important to wash them thoroughly and trim the stems and leaves. Roasting or steaming are popular methods of preparation.  One medium-size artichoke has up to 10 grams of fiber, which is about one third of the fiber you need for the day!  They are also an excellent source of vitamin K, which is important for bone health.  Serve with grilled salmon and brown rice for a balanced and tasty meal.

Sugar Snap Peas: If you think you don’t like peas, it may be because the peas of your formative youth were from a can.  Although they retain nutrients and can be a good source when fresh vegetables are not available, the canned version just does not compare to the mildly sweet, perfectly crisp peapods you find in your produce department.  You can use them raw in a salad like you would cucumber, but snap peas pack a whopping 10 percent of your daily recommendation of iron and are an excellent source of vitamin A.  Sautee snap peas, carrots, onions and mushrooms for a great veggie stir-fry you can serve with chicken or tofu.

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