I had the American Heart Association Quick & Easy Cookbook sitting around my house for many years before I finally used it. I had picked it up about 7-8 years ago at a library sale, and it just sat on a shelf in my basement. I was afraid that cutting back on fat would mean losing good taste so I never tried it out.
Abruptly, two years ago, I was told by my doctor I needed to lose a lot of weight. Suddenly, it became my go-to cookbook.
I’ve made quite a few recipes from the Quick & Easy Cookbook and I’ve compiled a list of them. Since I am a vegetarian, all of these recipes are either vegan or dairy.
Below, I’ve listed all the recipes I have made, including my opinion on their tastiness.
5 Star Recipes
My variation on the Delicious Low-Fat Herb Spread was posted a few months ago. In short, the recipe calls for combining dried herbs with low-fat cream cheese. In the book, the spread was used in Cucumber And Herb Cream Cheese Sandwiches, but I skipped the cucumber. The result was wonderful.
From the soup and stews chapter, I tried Three-Bean Chili. This recipe required a little tweaking since it calls for beer, which I don’t like. Three cans of beans are combined with canned tomatoes, beer, cumin and chili powder. After the mixture cooks for a short while, it is topped with yogurt. I made this chili with onion soup instead of beer and it was delicious.
The Broccoli With Easy Mustard Sauce was delicious. By preparing the sauce while the broccoli was cooking, the entire dish was completed was completed within five minutes. The recipe also comes with a version using new potatoes, but I haven’t tried that one yet.
For a snack, I tried the Layered Pesto Spread. If you skip the optional toppings, this recipe is a two ingredient winner. Rinse, drain and process cottage cheese till smooth. Add in purchased pesto and chill. Yum!
4 Star Recipes
The Stuffed French Toast was made from French bread, slit open and stuffed with a low-fat cream and orange mixture. Since I’m not crazy about the taste of orange and cream cheese I substituted peaches. The bread was then dipped in egg whites and fried in Pam. I enjoyed this recipe but I believe that next time I will mix the cream cheese with cherry preserves or try a savory filling. Pizza sauce and shredded cheese may be nice.
The Thirty-Minute Minestrone was the only soup recipe I tried. This soup turned out fine, but since I already make a very similar dish, which I like slightly better, I won’t make it again.
3 Star Recipes
I didn’t love the Open-Face Vegetable Sandwich but that may be my own fault. English muffins are spread with mustard, layered with fresh vegetables and topped with cheese. The sandwich is then heated till the cheese melts. Theoretically, the sandwich tasted fine, but melted cheese on fresh vegetables does not appeal to me.
The German-Style Noodles also came out okay, but it just wasn’t for me. This dish is a combination of cooked medium noodles, carrots, cabbage, low-fat sour cream or yogurt, green onions, caraway, salt and pepper. The problem was that I don’t like caraway. With other seasonings though, I probably would have enjoyed this.
I’m not sure why I didn’t like the Sesame Pasta and Vegetables, but I think it was because I held back a little on the fat. The recipe calls for both margarine and sesame oil and since that seemed a bit much for my diet, I skipped the margarine. To be fair, I might try making this one again, this time using the exact ingredients called for.
Recipes I Still Want To Try
There are still plenty of recipes that I still want to try; Peppery Spaetzle, Toasted Barley Pilaf, Red Pepper and Tomato Sauce and the Savory Snack Mix.
All in all, I believe the American Heart Associate Quick & Easy Cookbook is a winner. The recipes are fast and healthy, don’t require exotic ingredients, and range in taste from 3-5 stars. There is a good nutrient analysis plus some scattered cooking tips, which are very helpful.
Get your own copy of the American Heart Association Quick & Easy Cookbook at Amazon. Sadly, this book is out-of-print so you will need to purchase an inexpensive used copy.