Small batch stovetop baked beans that take just 10 minutes to make! High in fibre and protein, this is a healthy and easy dinner for two.
I’m starting to get that itch to buy a house. Figures I would want to buy a house now, when the housing market is absolutely redonkulous. Seriously, I was on a bike ride in my hometown Burlington (we want to move back there eventually), and an average-looking bungalow was going for a million dollars. A freaking million! We’re doomed.
Luckily we’re not planning on moving back to Burlington quite yet, so buying a house is on hold for now. But man, could we ever use the extra space. And by “we” I mostly mean “me”. My side of the closet? Stuffed full. My cookbook shelf? Overflowing. Our freezer? Jam packed.
So when I was craving baked beans last month (whoops, it’s taken me a while to get around to posting this), I didn’t want to make my standard recipe because the leftovers wouldn’t even fit in our freezer right now. But I also didn’t want to turn on the oven for 3 hours to just make a small batch. Enter my idea to make small batch stovetop baked beans that is the perfect size to serve just two people. And better yet, you can make it in just 10 minutes!
So until we get a house with room for a deep freezer (and a Wolf gas range, two ovens, and while we’re at it, a walk-in closet too), I’ll be enjoying these easy small batch stovetop baked beans without having to worry about storing leftovers.
My dad makes the most beautiful lasagna you’ll ever lay your eyes on. With layers of noodles, ground beef, homemade marinara, homemade bechamel, and cheese, it’s a sight to behold. It’s also usually a multi-day process to make. Maybe if I was newly retired like he is or a full time food blogger I’d make it myself, but as a working woman trying to stay active, have a social life, and somehow keep up with this blog, ain’t got no time for that.
Enter my easy peasy healthy vegetarian lasagna rolls that can be whipped up in under an hour! I skip the homemade bechamel in lieu of ricotta and cottage cheese. You could use entirely ricotta cheese, but I like swapping in some cottage cheese to beef up the protein in this meatless meal. I also use (gasp) jarred marinara sauce. I know I often advocate for cooking from scratch, but sometimes convenience trumps that. Look for a jarred sauce with no added sugar in the ingredients and as little sodium as possible. Under 5% DV for sodium per serving is the ideal, but the lowest I’ve been able to find is 7% DV in Mediterranean Gardens marinara sauce (not sponsored, I just like this brand!). Still not too shabby when them norm for pasta sauce is often double that!
The result is a fast dinner that’s as convenient as it is healthy. I’ve made this numerous times for John and recently for a class on family meals at work, where it got the thumbs up from parents and kids alike. Pair it with a side salad to make half your plate vegetables and enjoy its cheesy goodness!
These vegetarian lasagna rolls are a speedy alternative to lasagna for an easy and healthy dinner!
Author: Chelsea Allen
Yield: 4 servings
9 whole wheat lasagna noodles
10 oz full fat ricotta cheese
6 oz cottage cheese (or more ricotta cheese)
2 oz shredded Mozzarella cheese
6 oz frozen spinach, defrosted with excess water squeezed out
1 large egg
¼ tsp salt
⅛ tsp pepper
2 cups marinara sauce (I love Mediterranean Gardens marinara)
4 oz mozzarella cheese
Preheat the oven to 350F.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil and cook your lasagna noodles according to the package directions (note: you may need to cook them in two batches).
Meanwhile, combine the ricotta, cottage cheese, 2 oz mozzarella cheese, spinach, egg, salt, and pepper in a bowl and mix thoroughly.
Once your noodles are finished cooking, lay them out on a wire rack. Once cool enough to touch, divide the cheese mixture amongst the noodles, spreading it across their entire length.
Roll up the noodles and place in a baking dish (I used a 9x9 dish and managed to squeeze them all in) with ½ cup marinara sauce spread over the bottom. Spoon the other 1.5 cups marinara on top of the rolls then top with the shredded mozzarella.
Bake for 15-20 minutes and finish them off for 1-2 minutes under the broiler to brown the cheese (keep a close eye on them when broiling!).
What are your best tricks for making speedy weeknight dinners?
This quinoa and steel cut porridge is soaked overnight and topped with sauteed apples in the morning – a fast & healthy breakfast ready in just 10 minutes!
It’s Heart Month!
As a dietitian, I love this month. I actually think I’ve gone a little heart health crazy at work – I’m teaching classes on heart healthy cooking, doing heart healthy recipe demos, and I’ve made a fun display for customers to learn about heart healthy food swaps (like swapping out croutons for toasted nuts in salads – yum!).
So to celebrate heart month on the blog, today I’m bringing you a recipe for quinoa and steel cut porridge: a heart healthy breakfast to start your day with! Let’s take a look at some of the ingredients:
Steel cut oats: A great source of soluble fibre that helps to lower LDL (bad) cholesterol levels
Apples: Contain flavonoids that are associated with reduced risk of heart disease
Almonds: High in monounsaturated fat, known to lower LDL cholesterol
Not too bad for a humble bowl of oatmeal, right?
Another great thing about this quinoa and steel cut porridge is that it is fast to whip up in the mornings – this is thanks to the fact that you actually start the cooking process the night before, then let it soak overnight. I got this idea from Bon Appetit and love how it makes steel cut oatmeal prep fast enough for even weekday breakfasts! While it’s warming up, you sauté the apples (or could sub in pears). I use a sweeter variety like Golden Delicious, but if you find you want a bit more sweetness you could add in a drizzle of maple syrup. Top with toasted nuts or seeds, dried fruit, and even a nice scoop of almond butter for a heart(y) healthy breakfast!
This quinoa and steel cut porridge is soaked overnight and topped with sauteed apples in the morning - a fast & healthy breakfast ready in just 10 minutes!
Author: Chelsea Allen
Yield: 2 servings
¼ cup steel cut oats, dry
¼ cup quinoa, dry
2 tbsp raisins
½ tsp cinnamon
Pinch of salt
2 cups water
¼ cup milk or non-dairy milk
1 tsp coconut oil or butter
1 apple, sliced (I like using a sweeter apple, like Golden Delicious)
¼ tsp cinnamon, or more to taste
Squeeze of lemon juice
2 tbsp water
2 tbsp sliced almonds, toasted
Other toppings (optional): nuts/seeds, shredded coconut, nut butter, maple syrup, dried fruit
The night before, combine the steel cut oats, quinoa, raisins, cinnamon, salt, and water in a small pot and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and cover, then let sit overnight.
In the morning, heat the pot over medium heat and add milk as needed until warmed through while stirring frequently.
While the cereal is being warmed, heat the coconut oil in a pan and add the sliced apple and cinnamon. Stir frequently for a few minutes, then add the lemon juice and water. Continue to cook until the apples are tender.
Serve the sautéed apples over the oatmeal then add maple syrup to sweeten if necessary any additional toppings.
Welcome to Chelsea's Healthy Kitchen! I'm Chelsea, a Waterloo, Ontario area Registered Dietitian, cooking class instructor, and advocate for the enjoyment of food. This blog is a collection of my recipes, food adventures, and nutrition musings.