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Simply Nutritious, Quick and Delicious

Jenna Smith, Extension Educator brings you helpful tips to make meals easy, healthy and tasty!
Baby food

Making Your Own Baby Food

As my son is nearing the age of starting solid foods, I've began to contemplate whether or not to make my own baby food. I want my child to receive fresh food with no additives. However, I'm a little daunted just thinking about the work it may involve! Let's think about this a little more… Some commercial baby food has added sugars, salt and starch. Babies and toddlers are at an age whe...

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Posted by Jenna Smith at 11:07AM on 7/18/2014
Categories: Food Safety

Fruit and Yogurt Parfait

Should You Go Greek?

I'm pleased to introduce guest blogger, Tina Lam! Tina is a graduate student at Illinois State University and is completing her dietetic internship. In the last few years, Greek yogurt has been on the rise in popularity, but what is Greek yogurt? Greek yogurt is strained more intensively than regular yogurt. This removes the sugar called lactose and whey that is found in...

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Posted by Jenna Smith at 9:18AM on 7/10/2014
Categories: Breakfast Fruits and Vegetables Healthy Snacks Nutrition at School

Whole Wheat Pancakes

The Best Way to Start Your Day is With Breakfast

I'm pleased to introduce guest blogger and Illinois State University dietetic student, Tessa Spinelli! You've heard it over and over again, "breakfast is the most important meal of the day", and it's true! Although some of us may not feel hungry right after we wake up, our bodies are in need of fuel. After sleeping for a substantial period of time, your body aw...

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Posted by Jenna Smith at 11:49AM on 6/26/2014
Categories: Breakfast Fruits and Vegetables Nutrition at School

granola bars

Is Honey Healthier than Sugar?

I get this question all the time: is honey any healthier than granulated sugar? The short answer is no, but there are some differences to make note of. Both honey and sugar are carbohydrates, but each carry different characteristics. While ounce for ounce, the nutrients in honey and table sugar are generally the same, honey weighs more than sugar. Therefore, a teaspoon of honey actually...

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Posted by Jenna Smith at 11:37AM on 6/24/2014
Categories: Breakfast Healthy Snacks Nutrition at School

Hazelnut Yogurt Spread

A Label Shocker! The Truth About Hazelnut Spread

A couple of weeks ago, I received a coupon in the mail for hazelnut spread. I've always wanted to try it so I sent my husband on a grocery run and instructed him to pick some up. I was shocked when I took a look at the nutrition facts label and found out how unhealthy this stuff actually is! A few years ago, hazelnut spread was something very few people ever heard of or tried before. Nu...

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Posted by Jenna Smith at 9:48AM on 6/13/2014
Categories: Breakfast Fruits and Vegetables Healthy Snacks Nutrition at School

IMG 0103

A Fettuccine Alfredo Makeover

I’ve always been a sucker for fettuccine alfredo. I can distinctly remember my very first taste of the creamy white pasta; I was a long-haired junior high kid on vacation with my cousin, and when she ordered the dish at an Italian restaurant, I had to be just like her, so naturally I ordered the same thing. And it was love at first bite! Of course, back then I didn’t know and didn’t car...

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Posted by Jenna Smith at 8:34PM on 6/8/2014
Categories: Fruits and Vegetables

Do I Seriously Have to Preheat the Oven?

I’ll admit; I’m not the most patient person. Most standard recipes will begin with the step to preheat the oven. But my growling stomach sometimes causes me to skip over that part and sneak the casserole in the oven before it “beeps,” alerting me that it’s preheated. The casserole seems to always turn out just fine, which makes me pose the question: Is it really necessary to preheat the oven?...

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Posted by Jenna Smith at 3:32PM on 5/23/2014