Foods That Cause You to Lose Weight: The Negative Calorie Effect - Neal D. Barnard (2016)

HEARTIER DISHES

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SUPER SPAGHETTI

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Serves 8

Spaghetti doesn’t get any easier, unless you buy it ready-made! This simple, tasty sauce goes well with manicotti, lasagne, or any other pasta dish.

8 ounces spaghetti

½ cup red or white wine or water

1 onion, chopped

4 garlic cloves, crushed

2 cups sliced mushrooms

1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes

1 tablespoon mixed Italian herbs

1 teaspoon sugar

½ teaspoon fennel seeds (optional)

¼ teaspoon black pepper

Cook the spaghetti until it is tender. Drain and rinse. Set aside.

While the spaghetti cooks, heat the wine or water in a large pot, add the onion, garlic, and mushrooms. Cook until the onion is soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.

Spread the cooked spaghetti on a platter and top with the sauce.

Per ½ cup: 103 calories; 4 grams protein; 18 grams carbohydrate; 0 grams fat; 255 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol

POLENTA WITH HEARTY BARBECUE SAUCE

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Serves 8

Textured vegetable protein (TVP) provides a meaty flavor with none of meat’s fat or cholesterol. You’ll find it in natural food stores.

3 teaspoons soy sauce

1 large onion, finely chopped

1 bell pepper, finely diced

3 large garlic cloves, minced

1 15-ounce can tomato sauce

1 cup textured vegetable protein (TVP)

1 tablespoon sugar

1 teaspoon chili powder

2 tablespoons cider vinegar

1 tablespoon peanut butter

1 teaspoon stoneground or Dijon-style mustard

4 cups cooked polenta (1 cup uncooked)

Heat ½ cup of water and 1 teaspoon of soy sauce in a large pot.

Add the onion, bell pepper, and garlic and cook until the onion is soft, about 5 minutes. Add the tomato sauce, TVP, sugar, chili powder, vinegar, peanut butter, mustard, and 1 cup of water. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until the TVP is softened and the sauce is thick, about 10 minutes.

Spread the cooked polenta onto a serving bowl or platter, then top with sauce and serve.

Per serving: 146 calories; 8 grams protein; 24 grams carbohydrate; 1 gram fat; 215 mg of sodium; 0 mg cholesterol

SWEET AND SOUR VEGETABLE STIR-FRY

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Serves 4

⅓ cup ketchup

⅓ cup vinegar

⅓ cup brown sugar

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1 tablespoon cornstarch

¼ teaspoon dried red pepper flakes

½ cup water

½ cup water or vegetable stock

1 cup thinly sliced onion

2 garlic cloves, crushed

2 cups sliced mushrooms

1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced

1 medium zucchini, thinly sliced

2 cups snow peas

3–4 cups cooked brown rice

Combine the ketchup, vinegar, brown sugar, soy sauce, cornstarch, pepper flakes, and ½ cup of water in a small bowl. Stir to mix, then set aside. In a large skillet or wok, heat ½ cup of water or vegetable stock and add the onion and garlic. Cook until the onion begins to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook 3 minutes, then add the bell pepper and zucchini. Continue cooking over medium-high heat, stirring continuously, until the vegetables are just becoming tender, about 3 minutes. Add the snow peas and reserved sauce mixture and cook, stirring constantly, until the sauce is clear and thickened, about 2 minutes.

Serve over cooked rice.

Per serving: 352 calories; 8 grams protein; 73 grams carbohydrate; 3 grams fat; 320 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol

FAST LANE CHOW MEIN

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Serves 4 to 6

This chow mein takes just minutes to prepare and is a delicious way to load up on nutritious vegetables.

½ cup water

2 teaspoons soy sauce

1 onion, chopped

4–5 garlic cloves, minced

1 cup thinly sliced green cabbage

1 stalk celery, thinly sliced

1 pound sliced mushrooms, fresh or frozen

3 cups chopped kale

2 packages vegetarian ramen soup (I use Westbrae Miso Ramen)

1 cup water

Heat ½ cup of water and 1 teaspoon of soy sauce in a large pot. Add the chopped onion and garlic. Cook until the onion is soft, about 5 minutes. Add the cabbage, celery, mushrooms, and kale.

Crush the ramen noodles (I use the handle of my knife to do this) and add them to the vegetable mixture along with one of the ramen seasoning packets and 1 cup of water. Stir to mix, then cover and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables and noodles are tender, about 5 minutes. Check the seasonings and add a bit more of the ramen seasoning mix if needed.

Per serving: 163 calories; 6 grams protein; 32 grams carbohydrate; 1 gram fat; 594 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol

THAI VEGETABLES WITH RICE

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Serves 8

In this dish, colorful vegetables are simmered in a flavorful sauce and served over aromatic basmati or jasmine rice. For a mild dish, use the smaller amount of dried red pepper flakes. Increase the amount for a more fiery version.

½ cup water

2 tablespoons soy sauce

1 onion, thinly sliced

4 garlic cloves, minced

1 pound yams, peeled and cut into wedges

1 15-ounce can crushed tomatoes

2 teaspoons ground coriander

1 teaspoon ground cumin

½–1 teaspoon red pepper flakes

½ teaspoon turmeric

½ teaspoon ginger powder (or 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, grated)

½ cup water

1 15-ounce can garbanzo beans, including liquid

½ pound fresh green beans, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces (about 2 cups)

1 red bell pepper, cut into thin strips

2 teaspoons grated lemon rind (lemon zest)

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 tablespoon soy sauce

6 cups cooked basmati or jasmine rice (2 cups raw)

Heat ½ cup of water and 1 tablespoon of soy sauce in a large pot. Add the chopped onion and garlic. Cook until the onion is very soft, about 5 minutes. Add the yam, crushed tomatoes, coriander, cumin, red pepper flakes, turmeric, ginger, and ½ cup of water. Cover and simmer 5 minutes.

Add the garbanzo beans with their liquid and the green beans, then cover and simmer 5 more minutes. Add the bell pepper and lemon rind and simmer until the yams and green beans are tender when pierced with a sharp knife, about 10 minutes. Stir in the lemon juice and remaining soy sauce. Serve over cooked rice.

Per serving: 286 calories; 7 grams protein; 62 grams carbohydrate; 1 gram fat; 166 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol

CHILI MAC

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Serves 8

Kids love this easy-to-make meal.

8 ounces pasta spirals

½ cup water

1 onion, chopped

1 small bell pepper, diced

3 garlic cloves, minced

¾ cup textured vegetable protein

1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes

1 15-ounce can kidney beans, including liquid

1 15-ounce can corn, including liquid

¾ cup water

2 teaspoons ground cumin

4–6 teaspoons chili powder

½ teaspoon salt

Cook the pasta in boiling water until it is tender. Drain and rinse it, then set it aside.

Heat ½ cup of water in a large pot then add the onion, bell pepper, and garlic. Cook until the onion is soft, about 5 minutes. Add the textured vegetable protein, crushed tomatoes, kidney beans, corn, and an additional ¾ cup of water. Stir in the cumin, chili powder, and salt, then simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes. Stir in the cooked pasta and check the seasonings. Add more chili powder if a spicier dish is desired.

Per serving: 170 calories; 9 grams protein; 32 grams carbohydrate; 1 gram fat; 434 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol

FAT-FREE HOT DOGS AND BURGERS

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Now you and your family can enjoy delicious vegetarian hot dogs, chili dogs, and burgers without any fat or cholesterol. Look for Smart Dogs, Yve’s Veggie Wieners, or Garden Dogs in your supermarket or natural food store. Delicious vegetarian burger patties are available in many supermarkets and natural food stores.

Brands vary in flavor and texture, so do some exploring to find your favorites. Some of my favorites are the Garden Vegan by Wholesome and Hearty Foods, the Boca Burger by the Boca Burger Company, and the Natural Touch Burger by Morningstar Farms. Be sure to select varieties that are low in fat (3 grams or less per patty). You may also want to try using vegetarian burgers in place of meat in sauces, stuffings, and tacos (see the recipe for tacos).

CHILI BURGER DELUXE

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Makes enough for 2 burgers

Use one of the delicious fat-free, meatless patties listed above for this great-tasting burger.

2 vegetarian burger patties

1 burger bun, preferably whole grain

1 15-ounce can vegetarian chili

2 tomato slices

barbecue sauce or salsa

For each burger you are making, heat one patty in a toaster oven, microwave, or in a skillet, lightly toast one half of a burger bun, and heat about 1 cup of chili on the stove or in a microwave.

To assemble, top the bun half with a burger patty, a tomato slice, and the heated chili. Garnish with barbecue sauce or salsa.

Per burger: 352 calories; 24 grams protein; 60 grams carbohydrate; 1 gram fat; 566 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol

TACOS

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Makes 12 tacos

Boca Burgers are fat-free, meatless patties, available in natural food stores and in a growing number of supermarkets. If you are unable to locate Boca Burgers, substitute any other fat-free vegetarian burger.

½ cup water

½ onion, chopped

3 garlic cloves, crushed

1 small bell pepper, finely diced

½ cup tomato sauce

4 Boca Burgers, thawed and crumbled

2 teaspoons chili powder

½ teaspoon cumin

½ teaspoon oregano

12 corn tortillas

1 cup shredded leaf lettuce

1 medium tomato, diced

4 green onions, sliced

½ cup salsa or taco sauce

Heat ½ cup of water in a large skillet and cook onion, garlic, and pepper until the onion is soft, about 5 minutes. Stir in the tomato sauce, crumbled Boca Burgers, chili powder, cumin, and oregano. Cook over low heat until the mixture is fairly dry, about 3 minutes.

To assemble the tacos, place a small amount of filling on a tortilla and place it in a heavy, ungreased skillet. Heat until the tortilla is soft and warm, then fold in half and cook on each side for 60 seconds or longer for a crisper taco. Garnish with remaining ingredients.

Per taco: 114 calories; 7 grams protein; 19 grams carbohydrate; 1 gram fat; 86 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol

BROCCOLI BURRITOS

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Makes 6 burritos

This delicious dish turns broccoli into a meal. Roasted red peppers are available in jars in most markets, and tahini is sold in natural food stores, ethnic markets, and many supermarkets.

1 bunch of broccoli

1 15-ounce can garbanzo beans

½ cup roasted red peppers

2 tablespoons tahini (sesame seed butter)

3 tablespoons lemon juice

6 flour tortillas

6 tablespoons salsa (more or less to taste)

Cut or break the broccoli into flowerets. Peel the stalks and cut them into ½-inch thick rounds. You should have about 2 cups. Steam over boiling water until just tender, about 5 minutes.

Drain the garbanzo beans and place them in a food processor with the peppers, tahini, and lemon juice. Process until very smooth.

Spread about ¼ cup of the garbanzo mixture on a tortilla and place it face up in a large heated skillet. Heat it until the tortilla is warm and soft, about 2 minutes. Spread a line of broccoli down the center of the tortilla and sprinkle with salsa.

Fold the bottom of the tortilla up, then starting on one side, roll the tortilla around the broccoli. Repeat with the remaining tortillas.

Per burrito: 244 calories; 9 grams protein; 39 grams carbohydrate; 5 grams fat; 130 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol

Tip: You can reduce the fat content by using fat-free flour tortillas, which are sold in many supermarkets. Or try using chapatis (Indian flatbreads), which are made with whole wheat flour and are usually fat-free. Look for them in your favorite natural food store.

QUICK BLACK BEAN CHILI

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Serves 6

There are so many ways to enjoy delicious Black Bean Chili: serve it with brown rice and a green salad, use it as a filling for burritos, or try it over potatoes, as suggested in the next recipe. For a hotter chili, add some cayenne or fresh chopped jalapenos.

½ cup water

1 tablespoon soy sauce

2 onions, chopped

4 garlic cloves, crushed

2 15-ounce cans black beans

1 15-ounce can crushed tomatoes

1 4-ounce can diced chilies

2 teaspoons oregano

½ teaspoon cumin

¼ teaspoon salt

fresh cilantro, chopped

Heat the water and soy sauce in a large pan, then add the onion and garlic and cook until the onion is soft, about 5 minutes.

Add the black beans with their liquid, the tomatoes, chilies, oregano, cumin, and salt. Cover and simmer 25 minutes. Top with chopped fresh cilantro and serve.

Per serving: 138 calories; 7 grams protein; 26 grams carbohydrate; 0 grams fat; 199 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol

POTATOES WITH BLACK BEAN CHILI

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Makes 4 potatoes

4 red or yellow potatoes

1 cup black bean chili, homemade or commercial

½ cup salsa

2 green onions, sliced

¼ cup chopped cilantro

Scrub the potatoes and steam them until they are just tender when pierced with a fork, about 35 minutes. Cut a slit in the potato and press on the ends to open it. Top with black bean chili, salsa, green onions, and cilantro.

Per serving: 376 calories; 11 grams protein; 82 grams carbohydrate; 0.5 gram fat; 450 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol

BAKED FALAFEL SANDWICH

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Makes 20 falafel patties

Stuff a piece of whole wheat pita bread with these baked falafel patties for a delicious “Middle Eastern Taco.”

1 potato, diced

1 15-ounce can garbanzo beans, drained

1 small onion, finely chopped

½ cup fresh parsley, chopped fine

2 garlic cloves, minced

2 tablespoons tahini (sesame seed butter)

2 tablespoons soy sauce

½ teaspoon turmeric

½ teaspoon coriander

1 teaspoon cumin

⅛ teaspoon cayenne

Pita bread

Garnishes: lettuce, cucumber, tomato, green onions

salsa (optional)

Steam the diced potato over boiling water until soft. Place the drained garbanzo beans in a bowl, add the cooked potato, and mash. Add the onion, parsley, garlic, tahini, soy sauce, turmeric, coriander, cumin, and cayenne. Mix well.

Preheat the oven to 350°. Form the garbanzo mixture into small (walnut-sized) patties and place on a greased baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes, then turn with a spatula and bake an additional 15 minutes.

Warm the pita bread in foil in the oven, or by steaming it, or heating it briefly in a microwave oven. Stuff two or three falafel patties into the warm pita bread and garnish with lettuce, cucumber, tomato, and green onions. Top with salsa if desired.

Per falafel: 214 calories; 8 grams protein; 39 grams carbohydrate; 2 grams fat; 260 mg of sodium; 0 mg carbohydrate

Tip: Fantastic Foods makes an excellent instant falafel mix: just add water and let it stand a few minutes, then form into patties and bake as above.

PASTA WITH CREAMY PESTO

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Serves 8

This is pesto that you can enjoy to your heart’s content. It’s made with silken tofu and contains no added oil.

1 12-ounce package pasta

¼–½ teaspoon salt

1 10.5-ounce package firm silken tofu

2 cups fresh basil leaves

1 garlic clove

½ teaspoon salt

Cook the pasta in boiling water until it is tender, then drain and rinse it. Sprinkle with ¼ teaspoon of salt and toss to mix.

While the pasta is cooking, combine the remaining ingredients in a food processor. Blend until completely smooth, stopping the processor occasionally and scraping down the sides with a rubber spatula.

Add the pesto to the pasta and toss gently to mix. Serve at once.

Per serving: 158 calories; 8 grams protein; 28 grams carbohydrate; 1 gram fat; 204 to 270 mg of sodium; 0 mg cholesterol

CURRIED MUSHROOMS AND CHICKPEAS

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Serves 8

This spicy Indian dish is delicious with rice or couscous. You can make it hotter or milder by adjusting the amount of cayenne.

½ cup water

2 large onions, chopped

1½ tablespoons cumin seeds

1½ pounds mushrooms, sliced

1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes

1 15-ounce can garbanzo beans, drained

1 teaspoon turmeric

1 teaspoon coriander

½ teaspoon cayenne

½ teaspoon ginger

Heat the water in a large pot, then add the onions and cook until they are soft. Add the cumin seeds and mushrooms, and continue cooking over medium heat until the mushrooms are light brown.

Add the tomatoes, garbanzo beans, and spices. Cook 30 minutes or longer, until the mushrooms are tender and the flavors are well blended.

Per serving: 116 calories; 5 grams protein; 20 grams carbohydrate; 1 gram fat; 286 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol