5 Easy Weeknight Meals: Your 7 Day Family Jump Start!

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Blood Orange Natural Citrus Mint Hydration Smoothie!

(Psst…Awesome account of Sunday night’s 15 minute meal workshop coming shortly!)
I bought a bag of blood oranges from Trader Joe’s this week. Besides having fun scaring and delighting my son and his preschool class (we are “fruit family” this week, charged with bringing in the fruit/veggie snacks), I wanted to do something fun for me. Well, first I stained my sweatshirt, but that wasn’t very fun.

So this morning ( I’ll spare you the details) after a few days of my infamous migraines, I needed to re-hydrate with a natural hydration drink.

Natural Hydration Drinks

As you may know, I rail against the typical hydration drinks with corn syrup and food coloring. When I was training for the Friendship Circle half marathon I’d purchased Drip Drop, this cool hydration powder that can prevent people from having to go to the hospital for re-hydration  – and even save lives in areas where that isn’t even an option.

drip drop

I’d actually only had it once. The lemony taste (it also comes in Berry) was so overpowering, I didn’t end up using it for the race. But this morning I wanted to find a way to use it. So I decided to make a smoothie! I hoped that the Drip Drop would be so diluted in the 64 oz that fits into my Vitamix, I would create more of a lemonade effect, versus the sweet lemon bomb, I’d previously tasted. I was right!

Here’s the deliciousness I came up with that is natural, hydrating, and gentle on the stomach. Good for sustenance when you don’t feel up to eating.

Blood Orange Natural Citrus Mint Hydration Smoothie

smoothiegreen -1616068

2 cups water (this is approximate)

1 packet Drip Drop

4 cups baby spinach

2 fresh mint leaves

– now blend and add…

1 (preferably frozen) banana

1 large (or 1.5 small) blood orange

1 small apple ( I used honey crisp)

Blend again and enjoy!

***By the way, do you have the Healthy Family, Healthy You books yet? If not, you are missing out on dozens of healthy ideas and recipes you can use every day to feed your family well – simply and sanely! Get them today!

HFHY Front Cover with dash Cookbook Front Cover

Yours in health,



What’s the Opposite of Mindless Eating?

This will be short and sweet because it’s a busy week preparing for Sunday’s 15 minute meal workshop in Potomac. If you aren’t registered yet, click here! However, I am reading such a brilliant book, I had to start sharing some of its gems with you! What is it? “Slim by Design” by Brian Wansink, Ph.D.


According to Wansink, the best way to stay slim, healthy and energetic is to figure out how to mindlessly eat LESS.

The first step: The Kitchen Makeover.

Three goals for your kitchen makeover:

1. Make your kitchen less” loungeable.” Eat at the table on chairs that won’t hurt your butt but aren’t lounge chairs either! Only go there to cook and eat. Don(I’m sure there are a lot of open concept interior designers upset at this recommendation!).

2. Make tempting food invisible or inconvenient. 1st seen, 1st eaten! Sugar cereals to the back! Put your pantry out of the kitchen, like in the laundry room. No food in sight except at least two types of fruit on the counter.

Also, move the fruits and veggies from your produce drawers to the top of your fridge. Place less healthful foods in those drawers. Don’t the drawers keep your produce longer? you wonder. Wansink says, yes, but…”The goal is to eat it not preserve it.”

Keep already cut produce in clear glass containers or covered in plastic wrap. Cover less healthful foods in foil or place them in opaque containers.

3. Make it easier to cook. Clear your counters except for the fruit and the blender. (Can someone please tell my husband it’s a good thing when I leave the Vitamix out? :)

This may take a few hours…so I’ll be back next week with Step 2!

Yours in health,





My New Jewish Food Experience Article and Recipe

Jewish Food Experience

Substitution is Your Strategy

by Natasha Nadel
Here is an excerpt from a recent story (with a link to my recipe for vegan lasagna) I wrote for

Nothing in life is free, especially when it comes to food. Warm up store-bought or frozen lasagna to make your weeknights easy, and you will have enough saturated fat and sodium for days. Substitute artificial sweetener for sugar, and you’ll have a dish that tastes artificial and still elicits the same insulin response as sugar.

I believe that substitution is the key strategy everyone should employ when trying to improve one’s own diet or that of their family. However, that doesn’t mean substituting with fake food. For instance, the strategic plan I outline in my book, Healthy Family, Healthy You: The Healthy Mama’s Guide to feeding your family well – simply and sanely!, calls for examining your everyday meals and finding easy plant-based substitutions. To read the rest, here’s the live link to the cover story.

Click on the screenshots below (or the linked words in this sentence) to go to permanent PDFs of the cover story and the recipe.

JFE Cover

Substitution is Your Strategy Story JFE

Substitution is Your Strategy Story JFE

JFE Lasagna Recipe

JFE Lasagna Recipe

This recipe can also be found in my book, Healthy Family, Healthy You: The Healthy Mama’s Guide to feeding your family well – simply and sanely!

Find over 100 additional easy, healthy recipes in The Healthy Family, Healthy You Cookbook.