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Pack a Better Lunch

September 26, 2023
Packing a lunch is a great way to save money and eat nutritiously during the work or school day. With a little planning, you can make it a part of your daily routine. Start by asking yourself a few questions.
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Ingredient Highlight: Lentils

August 30, 2023
Today’s blog will focus on one of the most nutritious plant-based protein and carb sources: lentils! One cup of cooked lentils is only 230 calories and provides 40 grams of carbs, 18 grams of protein, and 16 grams of fiber.  Lentils may protect against certain types of cancers, heart disease and other health conditions. The most common types of lentils available in the U.S. are green, brown, red, and yellow lentils. Lentils are available as whole lentils or split versions where the husks are removed. Since whole lentils still have their husks, they take a longer time to cook.
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All About Tofu

March 6, 2023
Tofu is an important food in many East Asian and Southeast Asian cultures. It is a great vegetarian protein source and is created by pressing soymilk into a solid block. Tofu has a very mild flavor that soaks up seasonings and spices very well. While you can eat tofu right from the package, most people choose to press the tofu of extra water, season with their favorite flavors and cook it to get the tofu a little crispy.
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Holiday Leftover Guide: Side Dishes

December 12, 2022
If you’re planning a holiday meal or potluck, chances are you will have at least a few side dishes at the table. Once everyone has had a chance to dig in, you might have some leftover potatoes, breads, stuffing, and maybe even a few veggies. Using your side dishes as ingredients in other recipes can keep your post-holiday meals exciting. POTATOES Holiday meals are often full of potato options. Mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, and yams are great on their own or remixed into a new dish. Here are just a few ideas to liven up your leftover potatoes:
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Holiday Leftover Guide: Main Dishes

November 21, 2022
Repurposing your holiday leftovers is a great way to save you time and money during the busy holiday season. Plus, creating new dishes out of your favorite holiday foods reduces food waste and keeps you from eating the same thing day after day! Think Outside the Recipe Box Many holiday meals include whole birds or roasts, so you may have some meat left over. Luckily, meats are versatile in recipes. Turkey, ham, chicken, beef and pork roasts can all be used interchangeably in…
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Create your own soup with what's in the kitchen

February 6, 2019
What's for dinner tonight? Sometimes, that's not an easy question to answer.  Our latest blog series focuses on meals to make based on what's already in your kitchen at home. This week, the recipe is perfect for a cold winter night: soup! Weeknight Pantry Soup Ingredients:
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What's in the Pantry? Make a DIY Casserole!

January 22, 2019
When it's cold outside, nothing is better for dinner than a hearty, delicious casserole! Make your own at home by using our simple six category DIY (do it yourself) casserole recipe with what's already in your kitchen.
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5 Ingredients or Less: Stuffed Potatoes!

February 21, 2017
So many of our favorite recipes here at Illinois Nutrition Education Programs are few in ingredients and big on flavor! Our Stuffed Potatoes recipe definitely falls into this category. It has been a favorite around the office! While the recipe calls for diced ham, you can choose another cooked meat (ground beef, chopped turkey, etc.) or your favorite vegetable instead -- depending on what's available in your fridge. Let us know what you added to your potatoes on our Facebook page!
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Yes, You Can! (Use Canned Fruits & Veggies This Winter)

January 17, 2017
Winter in Illinois can mean spending more money at the store for fresh fruits and vegetables. One way to save the budget is to include more canned items in your diet! Canned fruits and vegetables are full of nutrition and flavor and can be used in many of your favorite dishes. You can use them year-round, too, and many of our recipes have both canned and fresh options. - Our Favorite Ways to Include More Canned Fruits or Vegetables:
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One Chicken, Three Meals

December 19, 2017
Cooking a whole chicken feeds your family and saves you money. Most recipes call for boneless skinless chicken breast, but it can be very expensive. If you buy the whole chicken instead, you can save up to $2.00 per pound. These savings are not just for one meal. With just a few extra steps, your family can enjoy just one chicken in three different and tasty ways. Meal 1: Roasted Chicken
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