Smart Snacking Tips

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If you want to lose weight or maintain weight loss this winter, choose smart snacks that will satisfy your taste buds without sabotaging your goals. Low-fat dairy is one great option recommended by the USDA. It’s a good source of protein that can help keep you fuller longer while providing calcium and important nutrients.

For tasty snack ideas, try these recipes:

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Spinach and Artichoke Dip with Pita Toasts

Spinach and Artichoke Dip with Pita Toasts

Makes 6 servings (a serving is a half-cup dip plus 6 pita chips); preparation time: 18 minutes; cooking time: 33 minutes

(Weight Watchers PointsPlus value: 5 per serving)

Pita toasts:

6, 4-inch whole wheat pita pockets, cut into sixths

Non-stick olive oil cooking spray

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Spinach and Artichoke Dip:

9 Weight Watchers Parmesan Peppercorn Wedges, cut into 1-inch pieces

1/2 cup non-fat sour cream

2 ounces Weight Watchers Reduced Fat Cream Cheese Spread, cut into 1-inch pieces

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

1 package (10-ounces) frozen chopped spinach, thawed, drained

1 can (14-ounces) artichoke hearts, drained, chopped into 1/8-inch pieces

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Arrange pita slices on baking sheet 1/4 inch apart. Spray both sides with cooking spray. Sprinkle tops with kosher salt, pepper.

Bake 7-8 minutes until golden. Remove from oven; set aside.

Lower oven heat to 350 degrees. Spray 8-inch baking pan with cooking spray.

In large bowl, combine Parmesan peppercorn wedges, sour cream, cream cheese, garlic powder, salt and pepper with electric mixer on low until well-blended.

Stir in spinach, artichoke hearts with large spoon. Mix until thoroughly combined.

Pour into pan; bake 25 minutes, until bubbling, lightly browned. Remove from oven. Serve warm or at room temperature with pita toasts.

Baked Mozzarella Sticks with Spicy Tomato Dipping Sauce

Makes 4 servings (a serving is 2 mozzarella sticks plus 1/2 cup sauce); preparation time: 12 minutes; cooking time: 20 minutes

(Weight Watchers PointsPlus value: 3 per serving)

Olive oil cooking spray

1 teaspoon olive oil

1 garlic clove, minced

1 can (15 ounces) tomato sauce

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon granulated sugar

1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (optional)

6 tablespoons unseasoned panko or breadcrumbs

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

2 tablespoons enriched flour

2 egg whites, lightly scrambled

4 pieces Weight Watchers Light String Cheese (or Weight Watchers Natural Light Smoked Mozzarella String Cheese), cut in half

Spray a baking sheet with olive oil cooking spray.

In a medium saucepan, heat olive oil over medium-low heat until just warm, about 1 minute. Add garlic; sauté for 1 minute. Add tomato sauce, salt, sugar, red pepper flakes; stir well. Heat until sauce begins to bubble. Reduce heat to low; simmer 10 minutes. Remove from heat.

On a medium plate, combine panko, garlic powder, oregano, salt and pepper.

Place flour on small plate. Coat each stick in flour. Shake off excess; dip in egg. Dip sticks in panko mixture. Place sticks on baking sheet 2 inches apart. Spray tops with olive oil cooking spray.

Place baking sheet in freezer for 1 hour; refrigerate sauce.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees 15 to 20 minutes before serving. Remove baking sheet from freezer; place in oven. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, until sticks are just heated through, not melted. Remove from oven.

Remove sauce from refrigerator. Microwave for 1 to 2 minutes until warmed through. Serve with sticks.

Tomato Mozzarella Skewers

Makes 4 servings (a serving is 1 skewer plus 1 tablespoon pesto); preparation time: 17 minutes

(Weight Watchers PointsPlus value: 3 per serving)

20 grape tomatoes

4 pieces Weight Watchers Light String Cheese (or Weight Watchers Natural Light Smoked Mozzarella String Cheese), cut into quarters

1 cup fresh basil plus 4 basil leaves, cut into quarters

1/2 clove garlic

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon low-sodium chicken broth

1 tablespoon pine nuts

1 tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

4, 8-inch skewers

Thread tomato onto skewer. Follow with 1 piece of mozzarella cheese, 1/4 piece basil. Repeat pattern until skewer is full, ending with a tomato. Once 4 skewers have been prepared, set aside.

Chop garlic in food processor until minced, about 15 seconds. Add basil, olive oil, chicken broth, pine nuts, Parmesan cheese, salt, pepper. Pulse until all ingredients are finely chopped, about 30 seconds.

Serve each skewer with 1 tablespoon pesto.

Cheesecake Lollipops

Makes 28 servings (a serving is 1 lollipop or square, 1/28th of a 9-inch cake); preparation time: 1 hour, plus 3 hours refrigeration time and 2 hours freezing time; cooking time: 45 minutes

(Weight Watchers PointsPlus value: 5 per serving)

Cheesecake

24 ounces Weight Watchers Reduced Fat Cream Cheese Spread, cut into 1-inch pieces

1 cup granulated sugar

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

3 large eggs

1-1/2 (one and one-half) teaspoons vanilla extract

1 teaspoon lemon zest

Ganache

12 ounces semisweet chocolate chips

1/4 cup half-and-half

Equipment

28 lollipop or Popsicle sticks

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In large mixing bowl, whip cream cheese and sugar until light, fluffy. Add flour, eggs, vanilla extract, lemon zest. Beat until completely smooth.

Pour mixture into 9-inch square baking pan; spread evenly. Bake 45 minutes or until a knife inserted into the center of the cheesecake comes out clean. Remove from oven; cool completely, approximately 1 hour.

Once cool, cover pan tightly with foil. Refrigerate 3 hours or overnight.

Line baking sheet with wax paper.

Remove cheesecake from refrigerator. Scoop out 28 balls (roughly 2 tablespoons in size) with measuring spoon or small ice cream scoop. Place balls on baking sheet, approximately 1 inch apart. Insert stick firmly in middle of each ball. Freeze 2 hours or overnight.

Just before serving, make ganache.

In double boiler or Pyrex bowl placed over pan of steaming, not yet simmering water, heat chocolate chips, half-and-half over low heat, whisking continuously until mixture is smooth. Remove from heat.

Dip lollipops into ganache until 3/4 of each lollipop is covered. Return to baking sheet. Allow to harden. Serve immediately or freeze until ready to serve.

For more tips and recipes, visit www.WeightWatchers.com.

The brand of ingredients used in the nutrition calculation software to calculate the PointsPlus value for these recipes may differ from what is available on the WeightWatchers.com Recipe Builder. This may impact the PointsPlus value.

Source: Weight Watchers

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