If you’re looking for a new snack to try, these Dilly Pretzels and Veggie Dip recipes are just the thing! They’re both so easy to make—the pretzels are coated with a mix of herbs, seasonings, and Ranch dressing mix (how could that not be good?!)—and the dip is a savory mix of mayo, sour cream, herbs, and dried onion flakes. The pretzels are great on their own, but if you love dips (which I do), they’re really good with this veggie dip! You can also serve the dip with fresh veggies or potato chips, so it’s pretty versatile!Continue reading
It’s always nice when you can make yummy snacks that are good for you, too! I found this recipe in a review copy I received of Keep Your Brain Young: A Health & Diet Program for Your Brain, Including 150 Recipes. The book gives helpful tips and a simple action plan on how you can help prevent or delay neurological diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. The book explains how the brain works and what causes these diseases, and then provides a 12-Step Healthy Brain Diet Program along with menu plans and recipes to keep your brain healthy. There are a variety of recipes, from snacks to soups, main dishes, and desserts.
One thing I found interesting in the book was that “The brain is the hungriest kind of tissue in the body. Eat an energy-rich, low-glycemic-index diet that fuels the brain steadily without spikes in blood sugar levels. Spiking blood sugar damages neurons moment by moment (p. 124).” So this book helps you think in terms of feeding your brain properly so it can function at its best.
I decided to try the Cinnamon Apple Chips recipe out because it’s always nice to have healthy snack options and apples are so good for you. You have to be careful not to slice your apples too thick or too thin–if they’re too thick they won’t crisp up as nice and if they’re too thin they may get a little burnt when they’re baking. So try to keep your slices as close as you can to 1/8″. Actually, my slices never really did get “crispy,” they were more the texture of dried apples, only a little moister, and I did bake them for 40 minutes, so maybe I should have baked them a little longer. The edges curled up and got a little crispy but the centers of the slices stayed soft–they do dry up a little more as they cool off on a wire rack, but mine never got to a “crispy” stage. But I really liked them. These chips taste like a slice of a baked apple, so if you like that flavor, you’ll like these!
CINNAMON APPLE CHIPS from Keep Your Brain Young
- 4 large tart-sweet apples (such as Braeburn, Gala, or Pippin), halved and cored
- 4 teaspoons (20 mL) stevia powder
- 1/2 teaspoon (2 mL) ground cinnamon
- Nonstick cooking spray (preferably olive oil)
Preheat oven to 325˚F (160˚C). Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.
Using a very sharp knife or a mandoline, cut apples into 1/8-inch (3 mm) thick slices.
In small bowl, combine stevia and cinnamon.
Arrange apple slices in a single layer on prepared baking sheets. Spray with cooking spray and sprinkle with stevia mixture.
Bake in preheated oven for 35 to 40 minutes or until edges are browned and slices are dry and crispy. Transfer chips to a wire rack and let cool completely (do this while the chips are still warm, or they will stick; they will crisp more as they cool). Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week.
Health Tip: Recent studies indicate that eating as little as 1/2 teaspoon (2 mL) of ground cinnamon per day and boost cognitive function and memory.
Nutrients: Calories 59; Fat 0g; Carbohydrate 16g; Protein 0g; Vitamin C 5 mg; Vitamin D 0 IU;Vitamin E 0 mg; Niacin 0mg; Folate 3 mcg; Vitamin B6 0.1 mg; Vitamin b12 0.0 mcg; Zinc 0.1 mg; Selenium 0 mcg
Courtesy of Keep Your Brain Young: A Health & Diet Program for Your Brain Including 150 Recipes by Dr. Fraser Smith & Ellie Aghdassi, 2014 © www.robertrose.ca Reprinted with publisher permission.
I was thinking that next time I try these I may cut the apple slices in halves or fourths and maybe that would help make them more crispy.
Have you baked apple slices before or do you have a favorite healthy fruit or veggie snack you like to make?
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My friend Sylvia made this Chex®icago Party Mix for a holiday open house. I could not stop eating it! I like the Original Chex® Party Mix, but this is a nice change. It’s called Chex®icago Party Mix because it’s inspired by the sweet and salty caramel-and-cheese popcorn combination that’s popular in Chicago. I started eating popcorn that way about ten years ago, and had no idea it was a favorite Chicago treat! I really like the sweet and salty (and cheesy) combination of flavors, so I have to say that Chicagoans have great taste when it comes to snacks! Now thanks to Sylvia, we all know about it! 🙂 This recipe makes 24 (1/2) cup servings.
CHEX®ICAGO PARTY MIX adapted from Chex® Mix
- 3 cups Corn Chex® cereal
- 3 cups Wheat Chex® cereal
- 2 cups Chocolate Chex® cereal (Sylvia substituted Cocoa Puffs® cereal)
- 2 cups bite-size square cheese crackers (like Cheez-It® crackers)
- 3 cups cheese popcorn
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1/3 cup light brown sugar or molasses (the molasses gives you a heavier, darker caramel coating)
- 1/3 cup light corn syrup
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
In large microwavable bowl, mix together cereals, 1 cup of the cheese crackers, and 2 cups of the popcorn; set aside.
Place butter, brown sugar (or molasses), corn syrup, and salt in a 2-cup microwavable measuring cup. Microwave on High for 1 minute and 30 seconds. Stir, then microwave on High again until mixture bubbles. Remove from microwave and stir in baking soda. Mixture will foam, but keep stirring until baking soda is dissolved. Pour over the cereal mixture and stir until fully coated.
Microwave this coated mixture on High 4 to 5 minutes, stirring after every minute. Spread on a baking sheet lined with wax paper or parchment paper. Let cool about 5 minutes to let caramel fully harden. Stir in remaining 1 cup cheese crackers and 1 cup cheese popcorn, and then it’s ready to serve!
This would be a great snack to serve for the holidays…and perfect for any football game-watching party!
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