Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Haystacks

I thought I’d share a recipe that my family enjoys a few times a month. It’s super easy and healthy.  It’s also vegetarian! I was introduced to this dish after Stephen and I were married. It’s actually the dish that made me realize my love for avocados. I can’t believe I went 25 years without eating avocado. I now eat avocado on an almost daily basis. I have to make up for the lost time!! Ha.

Haystacks:
1 pound Pinto Beans
1 can Rotel
1 packet Mild Chili Seasoning

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I buy my beans dry and then follow the instructions for cooking them. Rinse, soak, rinse, cook until just a little shy of tender. Then throw the beans, Rotel, and Chili Seasoning in the crock pot, (fill pot with water so that all the beans are covered – if needed) stir, and cook until the beans are tender and all ingredients are incorporated. You could also do this on the stovetop; I use the crockpot so that I can set it and not worry about it if I need to leave the house, etc.)

Once all those ingredients have cooked and are nice and warm, prepare your toppings!

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Toppings:
lettuce (we use Romaine)
cheese (low-fat or fat-free if you’re watching your calories/fat)
corn chips (tortilla chips would be good, too)
avocado
onions (we don’t use these, but if you like onions I’m sure they’d be good in this)
…whatever else your heart desires!

I calculated the bean mixture yesterday. It makes approximately seven cups of beans (not including any liquid.) A one cup serving of beans is 138 calories, 0 fat, 778.6 mg of potassium, 30.4 carbs (7.5g dietary fiber, 2.5g sugar) 10.4g protein, and 15% of your daily recommended amount of Iron.

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This is my bowl yesterday. I used 1.5 cups romaine, (15 calories) 1/2 cups fat free cheese, (90 calories) 1/4 of an avocado (63 calories) and 1 ounce of Fritos (160 calories.) My entire dinner was 466 calories – and 160 of it was the corn chips. I’m thinking about using baked tortilla chips next time. It’s very filling though, and that was all I had for dinner!

This is seriously one of my husband’s favorite dinners and I love it because it’s tasty, filling, cheap, and super easy to make – especially if you use canned beans! You can tweak it all different ways – you could even add meat to the bean mixture if you want it. (Use lean ground beef or ground turkey to keep it healthy!)

Enjoy!!

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--Steph