New Year’s Resolution To Lose Weight?

If you’re like a lot of other people, your New Year’s Resolution might have been to lose weight or eat healthier. And as you probably know, Southerners do love their comfort food! So, how can you have the best of both worlds? Try a few of these revamped beloved recipes…


Smokin Hammy Mac & Cheese

1 pound uncooked macaroni
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 cups fat-free milk
1 (12-oz.) can fat-free evaporated milk
1 cup (4 oz.) shredded smoked Gouda cheese
1/2 cup (2 oz.) shredded 1.5% reduced-fat sharp Cheddar cheese
3 ounces fat-free cream cheese, softened
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper, divided
1 (8-oz.) package chopped smoked ham
Vegetable cooking spray
1 1/4 cups cornflakes cereal, crushed
1 tablespoon butter, melted


1. Preheat oven to 350°. Cook macaroni by package instructions.
2. Meanwhile, melt 2 Tbsp. butter in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Gradually whisk in flour. Gradually whisk in milk and evaporated milk until smooth and slightly thickened. Whisk in Gouda cheese, next 3 ingredients, and 1/8 tsp. ground red pepper until smooth. Remove from heat, and stir in ham and pasta.
3. Pour mixture into a 13- x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Stir together crushed cereal, 1 Tbsp. melted butter, and remaining 1/8 tsp. ground red pepper; sprinkle over pasta mixture.
4. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes or until golden and bubbly. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

If you like, get creative and add some broccoli for extra fiber or a few dashes of Texas Pete for an extra kick. 453 calories and 27 grams of protein.


Shrimp & Grits

Parmesan Grits
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup uncooked quick-cooking grits
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Creamy Shrimp Sauce
1 pound unpeeled, medium-size raw shrimp (4 1/50 count)
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt
Vegetable cooking spray
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 1/4 cups low-sodium fat-free chicken broth
1/2 cup chopped green onions
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon hot sauce
2 cups firmly packed fresh baby spinach

1. Prepare Parmesan Grits: Bring 1/2 tsp. salt and 4 cups water to a boil in a medium saucepan; gradually whisk in grits. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, 8 minutes or until thickened. Whisk in cheese and pepper. Keep warm.
2. Prepare Creamy Shrimp Sauce: Peel shrimp; devein, if desired. Sprinkle shrimp with pepper and 1/8 tsp. salt. Cook in a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat 1 to 2 minutes on each side or just until shrimp turn pink. Remove from skillet. Reduce heat to medium. Add oil; heat 30 seconds. Whisk in flour; cook 30 seconds to 1 minute. Whisk in broth and next 5 ingredients; cook 2 to 3 minutes or until thickened. Stir in shrimp and spinach; cook 1 minute or until spinach is slightly wilted. Serve immediately over grits.

Serves 6 – 235 calories per serving and 19 grams of protein.


Grilled Pork Sandwiches


1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper
2 (3/4-lb.) pork tenderloins
Vegetable cooking spray
6 whole wheat hamburger buns
6 tablespoons Barbecue Sauce


1. Stir together first 4 ingredients; rub pork tenderloins evenly with seasoning mixture. Lightly coat pork with vegetable cooking spray.
2. Grill, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat (350° to 400°) 10 to 12 minutes on each side or until a meat thermometer inserted into thickest portions registers 155°. Remove from grill, and let stand 10 minutes. Chop or slice, and serve on hamburger buns. Drizzle each sandwich with 1 Tbsp. Barbecue Sauce.

264 calories per serving and 26 grams of protein!

For more inspiration to stick to your 2012 goal, visit Southern Living online.

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