"One night I wanted to make something different for dinner," writes Susie Kohler from her home in Union, Missouri. "I started with black beans and added things I thought would taste good." The end result was as delicious as it was economical...two burritos coast a mere 89¢.
"I found this idea in a magazine several years ago," notes Irene Wilson. "I have shared it with many people and everyone enjoys it." The Grand Junction, Colorado cook says the crisp celery sticks stuffed with peanut butter filling and dressy enough for holidays.
Pineapple chunks, mandarin oranges, strawberries and grapes are treated to a dressing of wine and sparkling club soda in this delightful salad. Serve in dessert dishes or set the whole bowl on the table for a fetching presentation.
Reduced-fat Italian salad dressing is the minute-saving marinade in Dorothy Acker's cold vegetable medley. "I've made this easy salad for the past 40 years and it's still a family favorite," says the Fort Wayne, Indiana reader. You can also use fresh green beans instead of frozen.
"Summer is a great time for potato salad but making it with regular mayonnaise adds too much fat," writes Janet Lewis of Bangor, Pennsylvania. "Salsa perks up this version and disguises the fact that it uses fat-free items."
This swift side dish is as beautiful as it is delicious. Red and yellow peppers, zucchini, corn and mushrooms are seasoned with garden-fresh herbs. Grilled in a foil pan, it's no-fuss cooking. —Maria Regakis
I lightened up this soup recipe by substituting black beans for the ground beef originally called for, and by topping off bowlfuls with reduced-fat sour cream and cheese. Spiral pasta adds a fun twist. —Colleen Zertler, Menomonie, Wisconsin
Things don't get much quicker than this mouthwatering side dish from Edna Hoffman. The Hebron, Indiana reader broils sliced eggplant before topping it with a speedy garlic-seasoned tomato sauce and a little Parmesan cheese.—Edna Hoffman, Hebron, Indiana
Serve the fast fillets alongside Green 'n' Gold Veggies shared by Opal Sanders of Glouster, Ohio. The buttery skillet side dish features beans, corn and green onions and works well with nearly any main course.
"I use canned corn and green beans when I'm really in a hurry," says Opal. Fresh corn is nice when it's available, too. Regardless, the results are always well received at get-togethers."