Heart Healthy

Recipes & Tips from the American Heart Association

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Recipes, tips and Images provided by The American Heart Association 

One in three woman die of heart disease and stroke. The American Heart Association is dedicated to making a change by building healthier lives. They offer a variety of tips and recipes, flanked with research and advocacies to educate Americans on the best ways to improve their lives.

This month we've teamed up with the American Heart Association to bring our readers heart healthy recipes, along with tips and suggestions that will help you utilize a better, healthier diet in your everyday life.

Berry-Topped Pudding Pie in Meringue-Nut Crust

Serves 8  |  1 slice per serving  |  Recipe courtesy Alton Brown

Canola or corn oil for pie pan
2 large Egg whites
½ tsp Vanilla extract
⅛ tsp Cream of tartar
⅛ tsp Salt
½ cup Sugar
¾ cup Walnuts or pecans, finely chopped
1 small pkg. Fat-free, sugar-free instant lemon or vanilla pudding mix, prepared with 2 cups cold fat-free milk
12 oz. Fresh berries or other fruit, sliced if needed
½ cup Fat-free frozen whipped topping, thawed (optional)

Preheat the oven to 300°F. Pour a small amount of oil onto a paper towel and lightly wipe the bottom and side of an 8- or 9-inch pie pan. In a large mixing bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the egg whites, vanilla, cream of tartar, and salt on medium speed until foamy. With the mixer still running, gradually add the sugar in a slow steady stream, until stiff peaks form. (The peaks shouldn’t fold over when the beater is lifted.)  Very gently fold in ½ cup of the nuts. Using a flexible spatula or rubber scraper, spread the meringue over the bottom and up the side of the pie pan and onto the lip of the pan, but not over the edge of the pan.  Sprinkle the bottom the pan with the remaining nuts.

Bake for 50 minutes, or until the meringue is firm and lightly browned. Transfer to a cooling rack and let cool completely, at least 2 hours. 

Using the package directions, prepare the pudding.  Spread over the cooled crust. Arrange the fruit decoratively over the pudding. Top with the whipped topping.

Note: In warm weather, meringues will get gummy after a few days, so it’s best to serve this dessert within 24 hours.

Nutritional Analysis (per serving): Calories 169; Total Fat 6.5 g (Saturated Fat 0.5g; Polysaturated Fat 4.5 g; Monounsaturated Fat 1.0 g; Trans Fat 0.0 g); Cholesterol 1 mg; Sodium 223 mg; Carbohydrates 25 g (Sugar 18 g; Fiber 3 g); Protein 5 g; Dietary Exchanges ½ fruit, 1 other carbohydrate 1½ fat) 

This recipe is brought to you by the American Heart Association’s Face The Fats program. Recipe copyright © 2007 by the American Heart Association. Look for other delicious recipes in American Heart Association cookbooks, available from booksellers everywhere.

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Oven-Fried Okra 

Serves 6  |  ½ cup per serving

Canola oil cooking spray
1 (20 oz.) bag Frozen sliced okra, thawed
½ tsp Salt 
½ tsp Pepper
2 cups Yellow corn meal (only a half-cup actually adheres to the okra)

This recipe is for an “oven-fried” okra that is trans fat (un)friendly. 

Preheat oven to 475°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray the foil generously with cooking spray. Set aside. Spray the inside of a gallon-sized food storage bag with cooking spray. Add the okra, a half-teaspoon of salt, and the pepper. Close the bag and shake to blend everything well. Let the okra rest for ten minutes to extract juice from the okra. Add the cornmeal to the bag and shake vigorously to coat the okra. Let the bag sit for ten minutes; then, shake it up again. Using a wide mesh strainer or a colander over a large bowl, remove the okra in batches and shake off excess cornmeal into the bowl, discarding the leftover meal.

Place the coated okra on the sheet pan and continue the process until all the okra is on the pan and the pieces are not touching each other.  Spray the okra well with cooking spray. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and stir the okra, trying to turn over as many pieces as possible. Lightly spray them again. Return to the oven for another 20 minutes. Remove from oven and lightly spray the pieces again.

Nutritional Analysis (per serving): Calories 70; Total Fat 0.5 g (Saturated Fat 0.0 g; Polysaturated Fat 0.0 g; Monounsaturated Fat 0.0 g; Trans Fat 0.0 g); Cholesterol 0 mg; Sodium 197 mg; Carbohydrates 16 g (Sugar 3 g; Fiber 3 g); Protein 3 g; Dietary Exchanges: ½ starch, 1 vegetable 

This recipe is brought to you by the American Heart Association’s Face The Fats program. Recipe copyright © 2007 by the American Heart Association. Look for other delicious recipes in American Heart Association cookbooks, available from booksellers everywhere.

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Fresh Veggie and Canadian Bacon Pizza with Homemade Crust  

Serves 8  |  2 slices per serving  |  Recipe courtesy of Alton Brown

It's all about great crust!


4 cups All-purpose flour, plus ½ cup set aside
1 envelope Instant yeast
1 tsp Sugar
½ tsp Salt  
1¼ cups Tepid water
1 Tbsp Olive oil
Cornmeal for dusting the peel


2 cups Part-skim mozzarella or other reduced-fat cheese
2 medium Tomatoes, sliced
2 ounces Canadian bacon, diced
2 cups sliced or chopped Fresh vegetables, such as mushrooms, zucchini, broccoli, asparagus, or onions, or a combination
4 tsps Thinly sliced or finely chopped fresh herbs, such as basil or oregano, or a combination

If using a standing mixer, in the bowl whisk together the 4 cups of flour, yeast, sugar, and salt. Pour in the water. Attach the dough hook. With the mixer on low, beat until the dough forms a ball, stopping the mixer and pushing down the dough with your hands as needed so it combines well. If the dough is sticky, add some of the remaining ½ cup flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, and beat for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the dough pulls away from the side of the bowl. If mixing by hand, in a large bowl stir together the 4 cups of flour, yeast, sugar, and salt using a large wooden spoon. With your hands, blend the dough into a ball. If the dough is sticky, add some of the remaining ½ cup flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, working it in for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and does not stick to the side of the bowl. 

For either method, set the dough aside to rest for 15 minutes. To knead the dough with the mixer, beat on medium-low until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Push the dough away from you with the heels of your hands. Fold the dough back over onto itself. Continue to knead the dough for about for about 30 seconds, or until it is smooth and elastic, then work it into a ball. To knead by hand, turn the dough out as directed above and knead for 8 minutes, or until it is smooth and elastic. Work into a ball. Lightly coat a large, clean bowl with 1 teaspoon of the olive oil. Put the dough in the bowl, cover with a clean kitchen towel, and set aside in a warm place (about 85°F) until the dough doubles in size, about 1 hour. Fold down the dough, patting it into a disk, and place it back in the bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. The next day, remove the dough and cut into two equal portions. Shape each into a ball.

If you plan to use the dough that day, leave it on the counter, covered with a clean kitchen towel, for 1 hour to let it relax so shaping is easier. If you plan to use the dough another day, wrap it well in plastic wrap or put in an airtight plastic bag, and refrigerate for up to 1 week. For longer storage, freeze the dough, then when you’re ready to use it, thaw it overnight in the refrigerator.  To shape the dough, put it on a large, lightly floured surface, such as a counter, and press each ball into a flat disk. Work in your hands, rotating it around and around while pulling it out gently until it is 12 inches in diameter. Repeat with the second disk.

If available, set one or two pizza stones on the oven rack in the lower third of the oven. Preheat the oven to 500°F. Dust prep space with cornmeal and place the dough on top. Brush each pizza with 1 teaspoon olive oil. Sprinkle with the cheese. Top, in order, with the tomato slices, Canadian bacon, vegetables, and herbs. Slide the pizza onto the pizza stone in the oven. If you do not have a pizza stone, turn two sheet pans (at least 12x18 inches) over and sprinkle lightly with cornmeal. Assemble as directed above. Bake the pizzas for 8 minutes, or until the cheese is bubbly and the crusts are golden brown. Let the pizzas rest for 3 minutes before cutting each into 8 slices. Serve 2 slices to each person.

Nutritional Analysis (per serving): Calories 333; Total Fat 7.0 g (Saturated Fat 3.5 g; Polysaturated Fat 0.5 g; Monounsaturated Fat 2.5 g; Trans Fat 0.0 g); Cholesterol 21 mg; Sodium 402 mg; Carbohydrates 51 g (Sugar 2 g; Fiber 2 g); Protein 15 g; Dietary Exchanges: 3½ starch, 1 lean meat 

This recipe is brought to you by the American Heart Association’s Face The Fats program. Recipe copyright © 2007 by the American Heart Association. Look for other delicious recipes in American Heart Association cookbooks, available from booksellers everywhere.

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Tex-Mex Chili Pie 

Serves 4  |  1½ cup per serving


1 lb. Extra-lean ground beef
1 (15.5 oz.) can No-salt-added black beans, rinsed and drained
1 (14.5 oz.) can No-salt-added diced tomatoes, undrained
1 (8 oz.) can No-salt-added tomato sauce

Cooking spray
4 (6-inch) Corn tortillas

½ cup Water
½ cup chopped Red onion
½ medium Yellow bell pepper, chopped
½ medium Green bell pepper, chopped
1 tsp Chili powder
1 tsp Salt-free all-purpose seasoning blend

½ cup Shredded fat-free Cheddar cheese
¼ cup Fat-free sour cream

Perfect for wintry nights or while watching sporting events, this hearty chili is accented with crisp corn tortillas, fat-free Cheddar cheese, and dollops of fat-free sour cream. This recipe is worth repeating, so save time now by making a double batch and storing the leftover chili in an airtight container for up to 6 months in the freezer.

In a large nonstick skillet, cook the beef over medium-high heat for 6 to 8 minutes, or until browned, stirring frequently to turn and break up the beef. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the beef to a 2- to 3-quart slow cooker. Add the remaining chili ingredients to the slow cooker, stirring to combine. Cook on high for 3 to 4 hours or on low for 7 to 9 hours, or until the onions and bell peppers are tender and the flavors have blended.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 375°F. Lightly spray a baking sheet with cooking spray. Using a sharp knife, cut each tortilla into 8 triangles. Place in a single layer on the baking sheet. Lightly spray the tops with cooking spray.

Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the chips are golden brown and crisp. Transfer the baking sheet to a cooling rack. Let the chips cool for 15 minutes.

When the chili is ready, place 8 tortilla chips with a pointed end up around the inside of each rimmed soup bowl. Ladle the chili into the bowls. Sprinkle the Cheddar over the chili. Top each serving with a dollop of sour cream.

Nutritional Analysis (per serving): Calories 371; Total Fat 6.5 g (Saturated Fat 2.5 g; Polysaturated Fat 1.0 g; Monounsaturated Fat 2.5 g; Trans Fat 0.0 g); Cholesterol 67 mg; Sodium 317 mg; Carbohydrates 40 g (Sugar 12 g; Fiber 8 g); Protein 39 g; Dietary Exchanges: 2 starch, 2 vegetable 

This recipe is brought to you by the American Heart Association’s Food Certification Program. Recipe copyright © 2008 American Heart Association.  For more information heart-healthy grocery shopping, visit heartcheckmark.org.

Tips for Weightloss: 

• Instead of counting every calorie and fat gram  TRY keeping a food diary. Once you know what you are eating and how much you may be able to reduce the amount without having to count every calorie. Try eating ½ portions. 

• Instead of skipping meals to lose weight TRY eating
4-5 smaller meals during the day. Eating every 3-4 hours helps control hunger. Just make sure that your smaller meals are nutritionally balanced and do not exceed
your daily total calorie goals. 

• Instead of starving between meals TRY planning ahead and bringing healthy snacks with you wherever you go so you won’t be tempted to pick up something unhealthy on your way. Drink a tall glass of water to get you through a craving.

Information provided by The American Heart Association's "5 Goals to Losing Weight". www.heart.org

To learn more about heart health, read great articles and check out more recipes, visit www.heart.org

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