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8 Eat Clean, Get Lean Recipes

A variety of delicious ways to include our top power foods in your next meal

Freekeh soup with shrimp

Erin Kunkel

Freekeh Soup With Spicy Harissa Shrimp and Dates.

En español

Freekeh Soup With Spicy Harissa Shrimp and Dates


2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling

1-1/2 cups chopped red onion (about 1 medium)

1-1/2 cups chopped celery (1/2-inch pieces; about 3 stalks)

1-1/2 cups chopped red bell pepper (1/2-inch chunks; about 1 bell pepper)

1 to 2 cloves garlic, peeled and slightly crushed

1 tablespoon minced fresh sage

2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves

1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt

4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth

2 cups water, or cooking liquid from the lentils topped off with water

1 cup cracked freekeh

1-1/2 cups cooked French lentils, or 1 (15-ounce) can, rinsed and drained


1 to 2 tablespoons harissa paste*

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric

1/2 teaspoon Aleppo pepper

1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt

1 pound extra-large shrimp, shell-on or peeled and deveined

To finish

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

2 tablespoons lemon juice, or more as needed

1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

3 tablespoons finely chopped firm dates

1 lemon, cut into 6 wedges, for serving

1. To make the soup, heat a large Dutch oven or heavy saucepan over medium heat. Swirl in the olive oil and wait until it shimmers. Add the onion, celery, bell pepper, garlic, sage, thyme, and 1/4 teaspoon of the salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables soften, about 5 minutes.

2. Stir in the broth, water, freekeh and the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and bring to a boil. Decrease the heat to maintain a simmer, cover, and cook until the freekeh is tender with a slight chewiness, 18 to 20 minutes. Stir in the lentils.

3. Meanwhile, prepare the shrimp: Place a rack about 4 inches from the broiler and heat on high for about 5 minutes. Grease a large rimmed baking sheet with olive oil or coat with cooking spray.

4. Combine 1 tablespoon harissa paste (more if you like it spicy), the olive oil, turmeric, Aleppo pepper and salt in a small bowl. Place the shrimp in a medium bowl, gently rub in the harissa mixture, and allow to marinate for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the soup is almost done. Using paper towels, gently pat dry the shrimp and place on the baking sheet.

5. Broil until opaque throughout, 3 to 4 minutes, flipping them once in between with a metal spatula.

6. To finish, remove the soup from the heat and add the pepper and the lemon juice. Season with salt, pepper and lemon juice to taste. Drizzle with a bit more olive oil and sprinkle with 1/4 cup of the parsley.

7. Divide between six wide, shallow bowls and place 4 to 5 shrimp on top of each. Sprinkle each with 1/2 tablespoon of the dates and a bit of the remaining 2 tablespoons parsley, and serve at once, with lemon wedges on the side.

* Harissa is a traditional Tunisian chile paste infused with spices such as garlic and coriander. Look for it in well-stocked supermarkets or Middle Eastern stores.

Reprinted with permission from Simply Ancient Grains by Maria Speck, copyright (c) 2015. Published by Ten Speed Press, a division of Penguin Random House Inc. Photography (c) 2015 by Erin Kunkel.

Quinoa, arugula and fig salad

Courtesy of Amy Riolo

Quinoa, Arugula and Fig Salad.

Quinoa, Arugula and Fig Salad

Serves 4 as a vegetarian main dish or 8 as a side

1 cup dry quinoa, rinsed

4-5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Juice of 1 lemon

1/4 teaspoon unrefined sea salt or salt

Black pepper, to taste

1 pint fresh figs, quartered

11 ounces baby arugula


1. Bring 2 cups of water to a boil in a medium saucepan over high heat. Add the quinoa, stir, reduce heat to low, and cover. Allow to simmer until all liquid is absorbed, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from the stove and allow to cool completely. Whisk the olive oil, lemon juice, salt and black pepper together to form vinaigrette.

2. Place the quinoa in a large bowl and lightly fluff with a fork. Combine with the vinaigrette. Gently stir in figs. Place the arugula on a platter. Pour the quinoa mixture over the arugula and serve.

Used with permission from the author, Amy Riolo. Recipe adapted from The Ultimate Mediterranean Diet Cookbook: Harness the Power of the World's Healthiest Diet to Live Better, Fair Winds Press, 2015.

Citrus-marinated salmon with fennel cream

Courtesy of Amy Riolo

Citrus-Marinated Salmon With Fennel Cream.

Citrus-Marinated Salmon With Fennel Cream

4 servings

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1/4 cup orange juice

1/2 teaspoon unrefined sea salt or salt

Freshly ground pepper

4 salmon fillets (4 ounces each), skin on

1 fennel bulb, thinly sliced (reserve fronds)

1/2 sweet onion, thinly sliced

1 cup plain Greek yogurt

2 oranges, 1 zested, 1 thinly sliced


1. In a small bowl, whisk the olive oil, orange juice, salt and pepper together until emulsified.

2. Place the salmon fillets in a glass baking dish and pour marinade over the top. Allow to marinate for 1 hour.

3. Preheat the oven to 400°F.

4. Scatter fennel and onion around the sides of the salmon, and cover the baking dish with aluminum foil. Bake until the fish flakes easily with a fork and is opaque in color, 20 to 25 minutes.

5. While the fish is baking, combine the Greek yogurt with 2 tablespoons fennel fronds, finely chopped, and orange zest.

6. Remove the fish from oven and place on a serving plate. Dollop with about 1/4 cup of yogurt mixture and garnish with orange slices.

Used with permission from the author, Amy Riolo. Recipe adapted from The Ultimate Mediterranean Diet Cookbook: Harness the Power of the World's Healthiest Diet to Live Better, Fair Winds Press, 2015.

Escarole and white bean soup

Monica Bhinde

Escarole and White Bean Soup.

Escarole and White Bean Soup

8 servings

2 teaspoons olive oil

1/3 cup finely chopped prosciutto

1 medium onion, chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 large carrot, peeled and diced

1 celery stalk, diced

1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

4 cups low-sodium, low-fat chicken broth or vegetable broth

1 can (14.5 ounces) diced tomatoes

1 can (15 ounces) chickpeas, drained and rinsed (or cannellini beans or your favorite white beans)

2 cups washed and chopped escarole, kale, spinach or Swiss chard

2 tablespoon thinly sliced fresh basil

Freshly ground black pepper

Juice of 1/2 lemon


1. Heat the oil and prosciutto in a large saucepan over medium heat. Sauté the prosciutto for 2-3 minutes until lightly crisp. With a slotted spoon, remove the prosciutto from the pan and set aside. Add the onion, garlic, carrots and celery to the pan and sauté for 6 minutes. Add in the flour and salt and sauté for 2 minutes.

2. Add in the broth, tomatoes and beans, and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes.

3. Add in the escarole and basil and cook until greens wilt, about 3-4 minutes. Season with black pepper, lemon juice and additional salt as necessary. Top each bowl of soup with prosciutto.

Recipe by cookbook author and food editor Robyn Webb

Beet salad with yogurt dressing

Sang An

Beet Salad With Yogurt Dressing.

Beet Salad With Yogurt Dressing

Serves 4

4 beets, preferably an assortment of colors, trimmed

1/2 teaspoon white pepper

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon ground coriander

3/4 cup plain low-fat yogurt, stirred

1/4 teaspoon minced peeled fresh ginger

1/2 teaspoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

Chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish


1. Preheat oven to 425° F. Scrub beets well, and pat them dry.

2. In a medium bowl, mix pepper, oil, 1 teaspoon salt, and coriander. Add beets, and toss to combine. Place beets on a large piece of aluminum foil, and wrap to cover, ensuring that beets stay in a single layer; close seams tightly to keep steam inside as the beets cook. (If you are using different colors of beets, wrap each color separately.) Discard remaining marinade. Place foil packet on a rimmed baking sheet, and bake 50 minutes or until cooked through. (Beets are ready when easily pierced with a knife.) Remove from oven, and let cool to room temperature.

3. Remove beets from foil. The skin should easily peel off with your fingers or a paring knife. To protect hands from getting stained, you may want to rub skin off with paper towels or wear gloves. (The spice marinade may have concentrated itself on parts of a beet. If so, gently scrape it off.) Cut beets into wedges and arrange on 4 individual salad plates.

4. Place the yogurt, ginger, sugar and › teaspoon salt in a bowl; whisk to combine. If you prefer a thinner dressing, add a little water. Drizzle a bit of dressing on beets, wait a few minutes, and then drizzle some more; the beets will absorb the dressing. Garnish with cilantro, and serve immediately.

Used with permission of author Monica Bhide. Recipe from her book Modern Spice, published by Simon & Schuster, 2009.

Cherry, walnuts and avocado salad with champagne dressing

Monica Bhide

Dark Cherry, Walnuts and Avocado Salad With Parsley and a Champagne Vinegar Dressing.

Dark Cherry, Walnuts and Avocado Salad With Parsley and a Champagne Vinegar Dressing

Serves 4 as a salad

For the dressing:

2 tablespoons diced pitted dark cherries

3 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons Champagne vinegar or red wine vinegar

2 teaspoons honey

For the salad:

5 ounces arugula, rinsed and dried

1/2 small red onion, peeled and thinly sliced

1 avocado, peeled and diced

1 cup cooled cooked whole grains (barley, wild rice, quinoa)*

2 tablespoons toasted sunflower seeds

3 tablespoons chopped toasted walnuts

1 cup pitted and halved dark cherries (preferably fresh but you can use frozen)

Garnish — finely chopped parsley


1. For the dressing: In a blender, combine all the ingredients along with a couple of tablespoons of water. Set aside.

2. For the salad: Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl.

3. Pour the dressing over the salad. Toss to mix well.

4. Garnish with the parsley.

5. Serve immediately.

Recipe by Monica Bhide

Asparagus and baby vidalia onion salad with vinaigrette

Monica Bhide

Asparagus and Baby Vidalia Onion Salad With Lemon-Tarragon Vinaigrette.

Asparagus and Baby Vidalia Onion Salad With Lemon-Tarragon Vinaigrette

Serves 4

1-1/2 pounds medium asparagus, trimmed

4 baby Vidalia onions, white and green parts, thinly sliced on the diagonal

Juice of 1/2 lemon

1 tablespoon sherry wine vinegar

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 English cucumber, partially peeled in strips, seeded and cubed

3 tablespoons chopped fresh herbs (such as flat-leaf parsley, tarragon, chives and mint)

Coarse kosher salt and freshly ground white pepper


1. Prepare an ice-water bath by filling a large bowl with ice and water. Line a plate with paper towels.

2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the asparagus and cook until bright green and just tender, about 3 minutes. Without draining, add the onions and cook until both vegetables are tender, an additional 30 or 45 seconds.

3. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, vinegar and oil. Set aside. Drain the asparagus and onions well in a colander, then set the colander with the asparagus and onions in the ice-water bath (to set the color and stop the cooking), making sure the asparagus is submerged. Once chilled, remove the asparagus and onions to the prepared plate. Pat dry and transfer to a large bowl. Add the cucumbers and herbs. Add the reserved dressing and toss to coat and combine. Taste and adjust for seasoning with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.

Recipe and photo used with permission from Lighten Up, Y'all by Virginia Willis, published by Ten Speed Press, 2015.

Pasta with lentil and spinach sauce

Hannah Kaminsky

Pasta With Hearty Lentil and Spinach Sauce.

Pasta With Hearty Lentil and Spinach Sauce

Serves 6

8 to 10 ounces rotini, miniature penne or other short, chunky pasta

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil or 3 tablespoons vegetable broth or water

1 medium onion, finely chopped

3 to 4 cloves garlic, minced

1 medium red bell pepper, diced

1 to 1-1/2 cups sliced white or cremini mushrooms (optional)

One 28-ounce jar good-quality marinara sauce (see Note)

One 14- to 16-ounce can diced tomatoes undrained, or 2 cups diced ripe fresh tomatoes

3 to 3-1/2 cups cooked or two 15- to 16-ounce cans (drained and rinsed) brown lentils (see Note)

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 teaspoon sweet or smoked paprika

6 to 8 ounces baby spinach, rinsed well

1/4 cup minced fresh parsley or sliced fresh basil, or more to taste

Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Crushed red pepper flakes to taste (optional)


1. Cook the pasta in plenty of steadily boiling water in a large pot until al dente, then drain.

2. Meanwhile, heat the oil, broth or water in a medium skillet. Add the onion and sauté over medium-low heat until translucent. Add the garlic, bell pepper, and mushrooms, if desired, and continue to sauté until the onion is golden and the bell pepper is tender.

3. Return the cooked pasta to the large pot and stir in the marinara sauce, diced tomatoes, lentils, oregano and paprika along with the vegetable mixture in the skillet. Simmer gently over medium-low heat for 5 to 8 minutes, or until everything is well heated through.

4. Add the spinach, about half at a time, cover, then stir in once it's wilted.

5. Stir in the parsley or basil and season with salt and pepper. If you'd like a little heat, add a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes. Serve at once.

Note: Using canned lentils makes this a breeze, but when you aren't in a hurry, by all means use home-cooked lentils. For this recipe, use 1 cup dried lentils. Rinse and sort them and combine them in a saucepan with 2 cups water. Bring to a rapid simmer, then lower the heat and simmer gently, covered, for 30 minutes, or until the lentils are tender and still hold their shape. Drain any excess water. This step can be done ahead of time. The same goes for the marinara sauce.

Recipe from Plant Power: Transform Your Kitchen, Plate, and Life with More Than 150 Fresh and Flavorful Vegan Recipes by Nava Atlas., published by Harper One, 2014. Photo by Hannah Kaminsky.