First Look: Innit recipe app has lots of easy-to-follow instructions

The creators of the new Innit recipe and cooking app recently asked me to review it. I’m getting some thank-you items in return (a shopping bag, T-shirt and spatula so far, just thought you should know. That’s not enough to really change what I’m about to say one way or another). The app is free, you can download it by clicking here.

My first impression is Innit is suited to people who don’t like to cook or who have never cooked. Its step-by-step videos, some as basic as how to boil water, can take the novice past any jitters about cooking so they can prepare their own meals rather than relying on take-out every night.


The app even provides a shopping list for each dish and can talk to smart appliances  (I don’t have a smart oven, so I can’t test that out).

The app also tells you how long it will take to prepare your meal, giving you an end-time. I’m sure type A people will strive to beat that to show just how good they are.

I was able to find 10 possible recipes. The app’s website says you can personalize recipes to take into account allergies, etc. I haven’t found how to do that yet. I’d like to customize the recipes available to take out fat, salt and sugar, my three evil foods.

One salmon teriyaki recipe,for example, has 3,560 mgs of salt, two days supply for me. I’d substitute Mrs. Dash salt-free teriyaki sauce to cut that considerably. I’ll let you know in a subsequent post if I can find a way to do that.

To find nutritional info for each recipe,you tap on the calorie count to reach the nutrition info screen. Continue reading “First Look: Innit recipe app has lots of easy-to-follow instructions”

12 days of low-salt, low-sugar, low-fat Christmas recipes — low-salt pizza

With Christmas only two days away, this Saturday is likely one of last-minute rushing around and hurried eating for you. So what better meal tonight than some quick pizzas…no, not the store-bought or ordered kind, pizza you make at home to ensure it is low in salt and fat.

The finished pizza, basil added along with a dash olive oil. Bake at 400 for about 12-15 minutes.

I written about different low-salt crust options (crusts are normally loaded with salt). You can buy a pre-made lower-salt crust and use that. Any marked extra-thin are usually lower in salt simply because there’s less crust there to begin with.

Matzo is another option and is generally salt-free. Costco usually sells large boxes of large, round matzo that are perfect for making a pizza.

For the tomato sauce, either make your own, limiting the salt, or buy a salt-free sauce. I’ve used both Trader Joe’s and Hunt’s salt-free sauce in the past, as well as my own. Continue reading “12 days of low-salt, low-sugar, low-fat Christmas recipes — low-salt pizza”

Some simple, yet tasty, salmon recipes from Costco Connection

Low salt, low fat and low sugar recipes are the main reason readers come to this site, so I’m always on the look-out for more great, and easy to make recipes. I found these two salmon recipes in the May issue of The Costco Connection, Costco’s magazine.

In another sheet of aluminum foil, place your four pieces of salmon and separate with aluminum foil. Then rub in marinades for each.
Grilling salmon is a luscious experience. Click the links here to see two grilled salmon recipes form Costco.

One is for grilled salmon with grilled vegetables. I’ve done variations of this many times, either grilling veggies on skewers or in big pans. This calls for putting zucchini, pepper and onions in foil, seasoning with basil, garlic and olive oil and then just grilling the packet for five minutes. What could be easier? The salmon itself int his recipe is simply brushed with olive oil and grilled. Continue reading “Some simple, yet tasty, salmon recipes from Costco Connection”

Slow-Roasted chicken with lots of garlic

Garlic is one of my old-time food loves. Growing up Italian, it was always around and I came to love it. As an adult, I had roasted garlic for the first time and feel in love with that a swell. So whenever I see a recipe that talks about lots of garlic, like this one from Bon Appetit, I’m interested.

Try skinless chicken breasts instead of the whole chicken to cut the fat.
Try skinless chicken breasts instead of the whole chicken to cut the fat.

Slow-roasted chicken with all the garlic was the headline in the BA newsletter I received recently. I had to click through. As with most recipes I see, I’d make some modifications to make it lower-fat and lower-salt. Use chicken breasts instead of a whole chicken as the recipe calls for. Continue reading “Slow-Roasted chicken with lots of garlic”

Here’s why I should only cook, never bake

“Cooking is an art, baking is a science.” That phrase has been a round in print since at least 1967, according to one source I found. The corollary to that for me is —  stick to cooking, avoid baking. I am not now, nor ever will be a scientist.

My deflated, soggy three-ingredient muffins.
My deflated, soggy three-ingredient muffins.

Baking is a science because baking recipes really are formulas. Change one amount or one ingredient and it all goes haywire, much like all the test tubes I blew up in science class while trying to distill wood my freshman year in high school.

I like to use recipes as a starting point, not as dictates, so I always mess something up while baking. Continue reading “Here’s why I should only cook, never bake”

Eating out salt, fat and calorie minefields from WebMD

I’ve been writing this week about a special issue of the WebMD newsletter dealing with eating out. One article got very specific about items to avoid as various fast-food outlets and what to buy instead.

Deep dish pizza--those were the days my friend, we thought they'd never end.
Deep dish pizza–those were the days my friend, we thought they’d never end.

I pointed out those substitutes all were too high in salt, as far as my diet is concerned. This post looks at another article entitled Worst Restaurant Meals.

Continue reading “Eating out salt, fat and calorie minefields from WebMD”

Tilapia — with a little chili kick

Tilapia is one of my go-to fish choices these days because its quick to make. It’s not supposedly as healthy for us as salmon or other good-fat fish, but it can be made in lots of ways, check some of ym past recipes for it on our recipe page.

Tilapia is a fast, easy dish to make at home, or enjoy out as I did with this meal.
Tilapia is a fast, easy dish to make at home, or enjoy out as I did with this meal.

I recently saw this recipe from trainer Jillian Michaels on her site that I thought might interest you, especially if you’re into spicier fare. It includes chili powder and garlic powder. Continue reading “Tilapia — with a little chili kick”

An original eggplant recipe from the Frank family, next generation

Christmas 2015 brought a rare and special gift for me, both my adult children and their partners were able to be back in our home for Christmas dinner. My son lives in St. Paul, Minn. these days and my daughter is even farther away in Portland, Ore., so this was truly a very special holiday for me, and one that ended up producing some new holiday dishes I recommend to you, especially if you’re a fan of eggplant as I am.

I was creating an extensive low-salt, low-fat, low-sugar Christmas menu but also was thinking about my daughter’s vegetarian diet when I decided to give my children a menu challenge of their own — we would stage Battle Eggplant ala the old Iron Chef show, a program we enjoyed watching together when they were younger.

The contestants, from left to right, Matt and Kelsey, me, Daniel and Jenny.
The contestants, from left to right, Matt and Kelsey, me, Daniel and Jenny.

I presented them each with a large eggplant and opened our kitchen to them in terms of spices and other ingredients. Anything we had was open to use, much like the Iron Chef shows. My wife’s family, which came after the cooking was done to eat dinner with us as well, would be the judges and not know who made which dish. Continue reading “An original eggplant recipe from the Frank family, next generation”

Shrimp for everyone — if you like spicy, saucy dishes

Shrimp is something I can eat on my post-angioplasty diet, according to the nutritionists I’ve consulted. The days when shrimp were thought to somehow be bad for cholesterol apparently have past.

So I was excited to see this Cooking Light compilation of more than 100 shrimp recipes, until I started scrolling through them.

The first few have either too much spice or too much sauce or other item, like butter on a roll, that I can no longer eat.

The grilled lemon bay shrimp could be one I’d enjoy, minus the salt in the recipe. Here’s the ingredient list:

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon olive oil $
1/2 teaspoon salt [omit this see if you notice the difference]
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 garlic cloves, minced
32 large shrimp, peeled and deveined (about 1 1/2 pounds) $
32 fresh bay leaves
4 large lemons, each cut into 8 wedges
Cooking spray


A Chinese food recipe that actually works as low-sodium?

Chinese food is a cuisine I love but have given up since my 2012 angioplasty because of the high sodium content of almost anything containing soy sauce or other salt-heavy Chinese sauces. I did binge on Chinese food for a birthday a few years back, but that’s been it.

A low-salt broccoli beef recipe from the American Heart Association.
A low-salt broccoli beef recipe from the American Heart Association.

So I was excited to see this recipe for broccoli beef stir fry from the American Heart Association. It uses only a tiny amount fo low-sodium sauce sauce, one tablespoon, for a pound of beef and two pounds of broccoli. I might add some Mrs. Dash salt-free teriyaki marinade to intensify the Chinese flavors a bit. Continue reading “A Chinese food recipe that actually works as low-sodium?”

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