Almond-Sesame Energy Bars

With Spring around the corner, it's a great time to get outside and re-energize your exercise routine. As you take to the trails to walk, run or bike, tuck one of these bars into your pocket for an energy-boosting treat. They provide slow-burning carbohydrates for refueling your body, as well as protein for muscle repair. The bars are easy to make-they dont even require baking-and taste so much better than any bars you can buy!

Turkey-Apple Burgers with Cider-Glazed Onions

Turkey burgers (when made with ground turkey breast) are a healthy alternative to fatty beef burgers, but all too often they turn out dry and flavorless. Our solution is to add grated fresh apple to the lean turkey. Not only does this add moisture to the patties, the apple contributes a delicious sweet-tart flavor. Cider-glazed caramelized onions and a creamy mustard sauce provide the finishing touches to these burgers.

Black Bean Burritos

If you are looking for healthier alternatives to traditional meat-centered meals, turn to beans. They are a tasty, inexpensive source of plant protein, which also provide fiber and antioxidants. Wrapping seasoned black beans in a whole-wheat flour tortilla with a little cheese, yogurt and lots of fresh garnishes is an appealing way to prepare them. This recipe comes together in minutes, so it is ideal for a quick weeknight supper. If you are cooking for just one or two, the bean mixture can be refrigerated for up to 2 days and reheated to make subsequent meals.

100% Whole-Wheat Sandwich Bread

An enjoyable way to ensure that you are getting benefits of whole grain in your bread is to bake it yourself-at a fraction of the cost of bakery bread. Made with just a few basic ingredients, this dough develops a full wheaty flavor during its long slow rise. The trick to making 100% whole-wheat bread with an appealing moist, airy texture is to start by making a sponge (a loose mixture of flour, yeast and water) the day before baking. In addition, soaking a portion of the remaining whole-wheat flour in water overnight brings out its nutty flavor and helps build structure in the loaf, saving you kneading time.

Macaroni & Cheese with Caramelized Onions

In the chill of winter, comfort food is especially appealing. Here is an unconventional update of the perennial favorite, macaroni and cheese. Instead of the usual cream sauce, this recipe uses an easy sauce made with frozen squash, an excellent source of beta carotene, and low-fat milk. Surprising! Yes, but it works! Whole-grain fiber boosts fiber, while the delicious sweetness of caramelized onions complements the squash and cheese.

Glazed Pork Tenderloin with Quick Plum Chutney

Pork and plums are a time-honored pairing. In this recipe late-season plums and spices are simmered into a flavorful chutney to accompany lean pork tenderloin. The simple chutney does double duty as a glaze and a sauce. It is also delicious with poultry and can be used to perk up crackers and cheese.

Sweet Potato Pancakes & Waffles

Spring sunshine invites you to linger over a weekend breakfast. Here is a nutritious and delicious update on a pancake recipe, which doubles as a waffle recipe. It can even be made gluten-free (see Tip). Sweet potatoes contribute sweetness and a rich flavor, as well as valuable nutrients and fiber, to a basic pancake batter. Any time you turn on the oven to bake sweet potatoes, bake a few extra to spruce up your breakfast pancakes

Grilled Salmon & Vegetable Packets

Cooking fish and vegetables together in a foil packet on the grill is an excellent technique for healthy outdoor cooking. Because the food is cooked by the steam, which develops in the packet, you dont have to be concerned about potentially harmful carcinogens and Advanced Glycation End Products (AGEs; see March, 2010 issue of the Newsletter) that form when food is charred on a grill. Whats more, this cooking method delivers lots of flavor with a minimum of fat, and cleanup is a breeze. It is also a great way to incorporate colorful vegetables into your entre. In this months recipe, a savory Asian glaze enhances richly-flavored salmon. Round out this simple meal with brown rice or quinoa.

Maple-Glazed Pork with Pears

Pork tenderloin is lean, tender and easy to cook. Here it is paired with seasonal pears, which develop an exceptionally rich flavor when roasted. If you accompany this dish with 1/2 cup whole grain, such as barley, brown rice or bulgur, plus 1/2 cup green beans, and cap off the meal with 1/2 cup grapes, youll have an elegant autumn menu that weighs in at less than 500 calories per serving.

Summer Berry Torte

Celebrate the bounty of summers glorious berries! Treat your guests to this impressive but simple dessert. With its creamy custard made with yogurt, this fruity torte is reminiscent of cheesecake-but it has fewer than half the calories and a fraction of the fat of a typical cheesecake recipe. You can substitute frozen berries for fresh or use a mixture of fresh and frozen berries, depending on whats in season.