Are you finding social distancing difficult–especially when it comes to your fridge? Is cooking and meal preparation a new hobby that you’ve picked up now that you have extra time at home?
If this is the case, then three of our favorite savory sports bites from Jeff Lucchino, MS, RD, CSSD, director of Sports Nutrition, may be just what you need. These easy-to-make recipes pack a punch of energy, and they’re tasty, too. With only a few ingredients each, they’ll help the trip to the grocery store be quick, especially at a time when you probably don’t want to be there. Check out our recipes below, coupled with some healthy hints to help you out.
We interrupt this message to bring you a note about kale: Although none of the sports bites below includes kale, we’ve seen an abundance of this tasty leafy green on the shelves lately; if you stop at the store, you may want to buy some. Not only is kale one of the most nutrient-dense foods on earth, it is an excellent source of Vitamin C; it can help boost your immune system at a time when strong immune health is especially important. Plus, there are a dozen delicious ways to prepare it. Other immune- system boosters that are right up there with kale include citrus fruits, spinach, broccoli, Greek yogurt, sunflower seeds, and poultry, among many others.
Fresh Cucumber Roll-Ups
Coincidentally, each ingredient in this recipe plays an integral role in immune health. Find our recipe card below, or read the following to prepare this tasty snack:
- 1 thinly sliced cucumber
- 2 tbsp Greek yogurt
- 2-3 slices of bell peppers and carrots
Thinly slice a cucumber. Wrap the slice of cucumber to make an overlapping circle. Place 1-2 tbsp of Greek yogurt inside the cucumber and roll. Add sliced bell peppers and carrots to the center of the wrap. Enjoy!
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Parmesan Zucchini Coins
Skip the potato chips and go right for these nutrient-rich and tasty crisps. Find our recipe card and details below:
- 2 medium zucchinis
- ¼ cup grated parmesan
- ¼ cup plain bread crumbs
- A dash of salt
- A dash of ground pepper
Preheat your oven to 450°F. Coat a baking sheet with cooking spray. Slice the zucchini into ¼ inch thick rounds. Toss with olive oil. In a bowl, combine parmesan, bread, crumbs, salt, and pepper. Dip each round into the parmesan mixture, coating evenly on both sides. Place in a single layer on the baking sheet. Bake until browned and crisp (25-30 minutes) and serve!
Southwestern Stuffed Sweet Potato
This treat is a balance of sweet and savory and serves as a delicious and filling lunch or dinner. The recipe card and details are below. Check it out:
- 1 sweet potato
- 1-2 oz shredded rotisserie chicken
- Handful of black beans and corn
- Spoonful of salsa and mozzarella cheese
Pierce the sweet potato with a fork and microwave until cooked though (4-5 minutes). Top with cooked shredded chicken, black beans, corn, salsa, and mozzarella cheese. Then, dig in!
To schedule an appointment with Sports Nutrition at UPMC Sports Medicine, please call 724-720-3081 or email SportsNutrition@upmc.edu. To learn more, visit UPMC.com/SportsNutrition.
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About Sports Medicine
Sports and physical activity bring with them a potential for injury. If you are looking to prevent, treat, or rehabilitate a sports injury – or improve athletic performance – UPMC Sports Medicine and the UPMC Sports Medicine Concussion Program can help. We serve athletes and active people of all ages and experience levels. Our experts partner with the Pittsburgh Steelers, Pittsburgh Penguins, Pitt Panthers, and about 100 other high school, college, and regional teams and events throughout Pennsylvania – working daily to build better athletes.