Kaitlyn Njoroge/ December 6, 2018/ Health Events


Tis the season for incorporating fresh and healthy ideas into your holiday dishes. On Wednesday, Dec. 5, the Regency Health Committee co-sponsored “A Modern Holiday Menu” with Penn Medical Princeton Health. Beth Young, a registered dietitian nutritionist, walked audience members step-by-step through four holiday recipes that use simple ingredients. The recipes included a Greek hummus brought to you by her grandmother, an onion dip with a twist, and an apple cranberry salad and bean dip recipe taken from the “What’s Cooking? USDA Mixing Bowl” website.  At the end of the presentation, audience members were able to taste the healthy creations for themselves. Continue reading to learn how to make these recipes for yourself with mindful cooking advice from Young. 


 1) Layered Black Bean Dip 

From left to right: layered bean dip, onion dip 


1 can of black beans (15 ounce, drained and rinsed) 

¼ teaspoon onion powder 

¼ teaspoon dried oregano 

¼ teaspoon garlic powder 

¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper 

½ cup salsa (thick and chunky) 

½ cup sour cream (light) 

¼ cup green onion (chopped) 

2 ounces cheddar cheese, reduced fat (grated)  



  1. Mash beans and mix them with onion powder, dried oregano, garlic powder and cayenne pepper.  
    • Young says that black beans are high in fiber. According to Mayo Clinic, foods that are high in fiber can help an individual maintain a healthy weight, lower their risk of diabetes, heart disease and some types of cancer. 
  2. Top with salsa, sour cream, green onions and grated cheese.  
    • Salsa is low in fat, says Young, and using cheese that contains 2% milk is more beneficial than those made with whole milk.  
  3.  Young served this dip with reduced fat potato chips and multigrain tortilla chips.
    • Potato chips are a good source of potassium, while multigrain tortilla chips are another good source of fiber.  

2) Hummus

Greek hummus


1 can chickpeas 

1 clove garlic, minced 

Juice of half a lemon 

2 tablespoons of chopped parsley  

Pinch of black pepper 

1 tablespoon of olive oil 

2 tablespoons of toasted sesame seeds 


  1. Place all ingredients in a food processor and mix until smooth. Serve as a dip. 

3) Apple Cranberry Salad Toss

Apple cranberry salad


1 head of lettuce (about 10 cups) 

2 apples (medium, sliced) 

½ cups walnuts (chopped) 

1 cup dried cranberries) 

½ cup green onion (sliced) 

¾ cup vinaigrette dressing 


  1. Toss lettuce, apples, walnuts, cranberries and onions in a large bowl.  
    • If you want to incorporate cheese into your Apple Cranberry Salad, Young suggests using goat, low fat mozzarella, or feta cheese.  
    • Cranberries are high in vitamin C, and may prevent kidney stones says Young.  
  2. Add dressing, and serve!
    • Young made her own vinaigrette by combining a mixture of canola and olive oil with balsamic golden vinegar.

      Dressing used for salad


    4) Onion Dip


Any kind of onion dip 

Substitute a high in fat sour cream for a nonfat sour cream  


  1. Add equal parts nonfat sour cream and onion dip. 

Voila! Young says that grandkids won’t know the difference. 






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