To manage weight, spread protein throughout day
Many Americans are searching for ways to improve their health and manage their weight. Unfortunately, by now, many New Year's weight loss resolutions have been forgotten. Instead of turning to another fad diet, the answer might be as simple as changing the way we fill our plates at each meal.
A growing body of evidence indicates that many people may benefit from eating more protein foods throughout the day to maximize optimal health, manage weight, age healthfully, maintain muscle and prevent disease.
In general, people tend to consume about 65 percent of their protein in one sitting at dinnertime, not realizing all the benefits of spreading protein intake throughout the day. Research suggests that including protein like lean beef at breakfast promotes satiety, which can curb hunger when trying to maintain or lose weight. Three ounces of lean beef on average provides few calories -- only about 154 -- yet is a naturally rich source of 10 essential nutrients. It partners perfectly with whole grains, fruits, vegetables and low-fat dairy products making it easy to create a healthful plate.
There are many simple, creative and delicious ways to include lean protein in a breakfast routine. You can find an easy recipe search tool at Beef Nutrition.com that can help you match beef cuts to healthful, delicious recipes. I currently recommend welcoming spring by enjoying some delicious springtime vegetables with this Beef and Veggie Frittata. This recipe can be both a dinner and breakfast solution. Make it ahead of time for an evening meal and save yourself time and money by serving it for breakfast the next day. You can easily change the mealtime offerings for your family slightly by making the sides more suitable for dinner or breakfast.
For more recipes, visit www.sdbeef.org or www.beefitswhatsfordinner.com. For more information on creating healthful diets, contact Holly Swee, director of nutrition and consumer information for the South Dakota Beef Industry Council, at (605) 224-4722.
Beef and Veggie Frittata
Total Recipe Time: 45 to 50 minutes
1 pound ground beef (93 percent lean or leaner)
4 small red-skinned new potatoes (about 6 ounces), cut into 6 wedges each
1/2 cup water
1 cup thinly sliced yellow onion
1 small zucchini, cut lengthwise in half, then crosswise into 1/4-inch thick slices
1 teaspoon salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon pepper, divided
6 large eggs
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
3 tablespoons shredded Italian cheese blend
1/2 cup chopped tomato
1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Combine potatoes and water in 10-inch nonstick ovenproof skillet; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer 8 to 10 minutes or until potatoes are tender.
Remove from skillet; keep warm. Pour off remaining water from skillet, if necessary.
2. Brown ground beef with onion in same skillet over medium heat 6 minutes, breaking beef up into 3/4-inch crumbles. Add zucchini. Cook 2 to 3 minutes or until zucchini is just tender. Pour off drippings. Return potatoes to skillet. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper; mix thoroughly.
3. Whisk eggs, basil and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in large bowl. Pour evenly over beef mixture. Sprinkle with cheese. Bake in 350 degrees F oven about 18 to 20 minutes or until eggs are set.
4. Sprinkle frittata with tomato. Cut into 4 to 6 wedges.
Makes 4 to 6 servings
Test Kitchen Tips: Cooking times are for fresh or thoroughly thawed ground beef. Ground beef should be cooked to an internal temperature of 160 degrees F. Color is not a reliable indicator of ground beef doneness.
-- Recipe courtesy of the Beef Checkoff Program