Chocolate, No Indulgence Required

Chocolate Covered Cherry Smoothie

Did you know that cocoa powder earns three Guiding Stars? It’s true! On its own, cocoa is high in iron, dietary fiber, and a couple of other important nutrients. The reason chocolate gets a bad rap is that, in order to balance its natural bitterness, it’s often paired with added sugar and saturated fat. Neither is necessary! Pair cocoa powder with fruit for sweetness (plus fiber and a great range of nutrients) and plain, non-fat yogurt for creaminess (and protein), and you’ve got a winning nutritional combination that tastes like a “sometimes” food.

Continue reading »

The Secret to Vegan “Cheese”

Cashew Cheese Sauce

Cheese sauce is a treat many of us enjoy, no doubt. And many of us rarely indulge because it’s very much a “sometimes” food. Vegan cheese sauces, however, can be absolutely packed with nutrition. The secret to the cheesey flavor is nutritional yeast, which can generally be found in either the natural foods section or the spice section of your grocery store.

Continue reading »

Surprising Stars

Chocolate Covered Cherry Smoothie

Do you ever look at a Guiding Stars recipes and wonder how something that sounds decadent could earn three stars? Or how a salad might only earn one? Guiding Stars looks a nutrient density, specifically, how much nutrition is in a 100-calorie portion, to help you recognize, for example, when you’ve got a good balance of whole grains and veggies with the sauce that dresses them.

Continue reading »

Game Day Wraps

Chipotle Pork Wrap

Wraps are a fantastic option for feeding a crowd of friends who have gathered to watch a game together. Make them ahead and slice into pieces for snacks, or put out a wrap bar to let guests customize their own sandwich. Look for whole-grain wraps and offer spreads like hummus and guacamole with lean protein and fresh veggies for a nutritious offering.

Continue reading »