Father’s Day Dinner

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Cooking for Dad is not only the fastest way to his heart, it’s also a father’s day gift that he’ll be sure to love! The key to cooking him something special is to plan ahead with a simple menu of foods that he already loves. Check out these easy, healthy recipes along with foolproof cooking tips, videos, and do-ahead ideas.

That’s Appetizing!

cherry-peppersDon’t leave Dad waiting on an empty stomach! Sit him down with a homemade iced tea, cool beer, or a chilled glass of wine along with one of these tasty appetizers that you’ll have ready before you head back to the kitchen to make Dad’s main meal.

Try a black bean quesadilla that you can eat with your fingers, no plates required. Make it ahead and reheat in a preheated 400F oven, on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray.

If your Dad is more of a beer and bar food fan, try this version of jalapeño poppers that are baked but still have the yummy creamy filling with crunchy breadcrumb coating.

Or perhaps he’d love to nosh on this delectable guacamole. Buy your avocados at least 2 days ahead if your local grocery store doesn’t have a bin of pre-ripened or “ripe” stickers on the ones that are ready to enjoy. Ripe avocados should give slightly when pressed. Does Dad love vino, perhaps a chilled Chardonnay or hearty glass of Cab? Then start with stuffed cherry peppers, stuff them ahead of time and just warm in a 400° F oven for 10 to 15 minutes.

Beef Man

filetmignon283Is dad a serious beef fan? Well, you can indulge him the healthy way. Start with lean sirloin or try this tasty turkey burger to make a leaner option. Top with guacamole or baby spinach to add plenty of feel-good fiber. Eating more fiber means better digestion and slower uptake of carbs into your body, for a better fat burn.

If you’re going the steak route, search for lean filet or flank steak. Watch this easy video to make the perfect filet with a side of kale, the uber-superfood.

Tender Chicken

Juicy buttermilk chicken fingers might just hit the spot for Dad, or perhaps you’re ready to take it to the next level with these unique quinoa crusted fingers that are crisp and can be breaded and stored in the fridge up to 5 hours before you cook them.

If one-pot meals is more Dad’s style, try chicken enchiladas that you can prepare up to 30 minutes before you’re ready to serve. Just loosely cover the casserole dish with a piece of aluminum foil to keep warm.

Looking for something you can unveil on a platter? Nothing is easier or more beautiful than a roasted chicken. Plus, use left-overs to make a delicious salad or for sandwiches.

Sweet Finale

Chocolate Chip Cookie BarsIs your Dad a chocolate chip cookie-aholic?

Here’s a twist on a classic that he’ll enjoy, chocolate chip cookie bars, that can be made one day in advance. This recipe makes a whole batch so that Dad can treat himself all week long. Looking for something chilly? This rich chocolate sorbet is 100% dairy-free, low in calories but looks wonderfully elegant. Cocoa powder adds plenty of fiber and has an exotic flavor of added spices. Spread it between two low-fat grahams to make it into an ice cream sandwich for the casual version that you can eat with your hands.

Looking for a great gift for the grill this Father’s Day? Try a 4-pack of my new sauce line, Skinny Chef Superfood Sauces.

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