Senior Nutrition: Recipes & Facts

  • What are some easy recipes for healthy meals for seniors?

    For breakfast, some easy recipes include scrambled eggs with vegetables, yogurt parfaits, breakfast pizza, breakfast tortilla with nutella, and oatmeal.

    Lunch recipes include a turkey wrap, peanut butter and jelly sandwich, oyster stew, egg salad sandwiches, and a tuna melt.

    For dinner, try a chicken cordon bleu casserole, a calzone, stuffed pork chops, vegetable spaghetti, and a potatoes and ham casserole.

  • What are some healthy snack options for seniors?

    Healthy snacks can include sliced apples with peanut butter or almond butter. Trail mix and turkey roll-ups are also good healthy options that are easy to make.

  • What is the best healthy snack that's easy to make?

    Fruit smoothies can make excellent healthy snacks and can come in a wide variety. They can be purchased pre-made or made at home.

    They can even be a meal replacement.

    Vegetables, protein powders, and other nutrients can be added to fruit smoothies as needed for extra nutritional benefits.

Many of us worry about our loved one’s eating habits as they age.  Are they eating enough? Are they taking in the correct number of nutrients and vitamins in their meals? These are justifiable concerns, as when we age, our sense of taste and smell decrease which lessons our natural craving for food.  Other factors that affect older adults such as depression, health, mobility and medication issues to mention a few factors that can adversely affect their nutrition intake.

Here are some easy recipes for Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner and some mid-day snacks.  All recipes are a single serving unless otherwise stated. Enjoy!

Breakfast:

Scrambled Eggs with vegetables

Sauté a ¼ cup diced onion, spinach, green or red peppers in a

fry

pan in 2 tablespoons of olive oil to desired tenderness.  Beat 2 eggs, ¼ cup milk in a separate bowl add to vegetable mixture and cook thoroughly.  Enjoy!

Complete the meal with juice, whole grain toast, and fruit.

Yogurt parfait

1cup Vanilla yogurt, ¼ cup diced strawberries mix with the yogurt or place on top (blueberries, raspberries even diced papaya can be substituted for the strawberries), top with diced nuts.  Enjoy!

Complete the meal with a cup of hot coffee or tea.

Breakfast Pizza

1 English muffin split, spread 1 tablespoons pizza sauce on each ½ of the English muffin. Scrabble an egg and add ½ of the scrambled egg to each ½ muffin.  Top with 1tablespoon shredded mozzarella cheese.  If you desire you can add spinach leafs, mushrooms or diced onions to add a little zip.  Bake in pre-heated 350-degree oven for 5-7 minutes checking often as to not overcook.  Enjoy!

Complete the meal with a cup of fruit and coffee/tea.

Breakfast Tortilla with Nutella

Take a tortilla at room temperature and spread 1 tablespoon of Nutella on it.  Add 1/2 sliced banana and ½ cup sugar-free whipped topping.  Roll up tortilla. Enjoy!

Complete the meal with a cup of coffee, tea or juice.

Oatmeal

To make creamy oatmeal in a saucepan place ¾ cup of old fashioned oatmeal, ¾ cups of cold water, and a pinch of salt, heat to boiling and cook over medium heat for 2 ½ to 3 minutes. You may also use packaged oatmeal following package directions.  Top with any of the following:  berries, brown sugar, raisins, nuts, honey or yogurt.  Enjoy!

Complete meal with hot cocoa, tea or coffee.

Lunch:

Turkey wrap

Take 1 wheat or whole grain tortilla wrap, spread 1 to 2 tablespoons yogurt dressing and spread evenly over wrap.  Place 2-3 slices turkey (just baked or store bought) on tortilla add lettuce leaf(s), tomatoes slices, cucumber slices and a slice of provolone cheese. Roll tortilla and Enjoy!

Complete meal with a hot cup of your favorite soup and beverage.

Peanut butter and Jelly

Tried and true heaven on earth.  Start with 2 slices of wheat or whole grain bread.  Spread 1-2 tablespoons of peanut butter on the bread and add 1 tablespoon jelly (your choice of flavors). Enjoy!

Complete the meal with a glass of milk and a sliced apple.

Oyster Stew

½ pint oysters, 1 pint water, 1 pint milk.

Over medium heat, heat 1 pint of water in a sauce pan until it comes to a boil. At the same time bring 1 pint of milk to a boil over medium heat.  When the milk begins to boil pour it into the boiling water.  Add oysters.  Heat over medium heat until the oysters come to the top.  Serve at once with a teaspoon of butter and salt and pepper to taste.  Enjoy!

Complete meal with bread and butter.

Egg salad sandwiches

Boil 2 eggs in a saucepan for 10 minutes over medium heat, drain hot water and then cool the eggs in cold water.  Peel eggs and place peeled eggs in a bowl.  Using a fork chop up the eggs to desired coarseness.  Add 1 tablespoon plain yogurt (or mayonnaise) and 1 teaspoon mustard. Mix together (you may need to add more yogurt/mustard for consistency and or taste.  Put egg mixture on whole wheat or whole grain bread (can be toasted if desired).  If you want, you can add diced onion and or celery to the egg mixture. Enjoy!

Complete meal with ice tea, baked potatoes chips and pickles.

Tuna melt (2 servings)

1 can tuna in water drained and placed in a medium sized bowl.  Add ¼ cup diced onion, ¼ cup diced celery and ½ – ¾ cup plain yogurt(mayonnaise) mix well.  Butter a slice of whole wheat or whole grain bread and place butter side down in a fry pan.  Top the bread with a cup of the tuna mixture and spread it out.  Top with a slice of cheese (Provolone, Swiss, American). Top that with another slice of bread this time buttered side facing up.  Turn burner on to medium heat and heat until bread is a golden brown.  Carefully flip the sandwich over and toast other side until golden brown and cheese is melted.  Remove from heat and serve warm.  Enjoy!

Complete the meal with a nice warm cup of tomato soup.

Dinner:

Chicken Cordon Blue Casserole (2 servings)

1pound penne pasta cooked al-dente drained.  Add 1 cup cooked and cubed breast of chicken, 1 cup cooked and cubed ham.  In a medium saucepan over low heat combine 1½ cups milk, 8 oz. cream cheese and 2 tablespoons diced onion. Stirring frequently until it becomes a smooth texture 3-5 minutes.  Add pasta/chicken/ham mixture and add 2 cups shredded Swiss cheese, stir until mixed.  Transfer to a baking dish and top with bread crumbs.

Pre-heat broiler and place baking dish under broiler for 4 minutes or until brown.  Enjoy!

Complete meal with a tossed green salad and beverage.

Calzone

Using frozen bread dough that has been brought to room temperature (bread dough can be found in the freezer section of your local grocery store) roll dough into a 7-inch circle. Spread ½ cup to ¾ cup pizza sauce on dough leaving a clear boarder around the edges of the dough.  Add turkey pepperoni, spinach, diced onions, peppers and mushrooms on ½ of the dough.  Top with shredded cheese.  Fold the unfilled side onto the filled side and pinch the edges together.  Place on a lightly greased baking sheet.  Before placing the calzone in a pre-heated 425-degree oven, brush the calzone with a beaten egg yolk.  Cook at 425 for 10 – 15 minutes or until golden brown.  Enjoy!

Complete the meal with a small tossed green salad garnished with parmesan cheese.

Stuffed Pork Chops (2 servings)

2 – 1inch Pork Chops.  Cut  a pocket on each pork chop, bone side.  Mix well ¾ cups bread crumbs, 1/8 teaspoon salt and pepper, ½ tablespoon minced Parsley, 1/3 teaspoon sage, ½ tablespoon minced onion and 1 tablespoon milk.  If desired, you can add ½ cup minced apple to the mixture.  Stuff each chop with ½ of the mixture.  Bake in pre-heated 350-degree oven for 45-60 minutes.

Complete meal with apples sauce and whole wheat roll.

Vegetable Spaghetti

Boil water with a pinch of salt and a tablespoon of oil.  Add 1 cup of pasta, either spaghetti pasta or Penne.  Cook according to package directions.  Drain pasta.

Dice ½ cup each zucchini, onion, broccoli, mushrooms (any and all vegetables are great in this dish).  In a pan with 1 ½ tablespoons butter, sauté the vegetables together  over medium heat for 3-5 minutes or until desired tenderness is reached.  Add 1 ½ cups jarred spaghetti sauce to the vegetables and heat through.

Place a serving of pasta on a plate top with vegetable/pasta sauce mixture. Top with shredded parmesan cheese.  Enjoy!

Complete meal with some Italian bread.

Potatoes and Ham Casserole (4 servings)

1 8oz package hash browns thawed, ½ cup chopped onion, ½  can cream of chicken soup, 1 8oz container sour cream, 1 ham steak diced, ½ stick melted butter, 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese.  Mix all ingredients together and place in an 8-inch baking dish.  Top with 3 cups crushed cornflakes.  Bake in a pre-heated 350-degree oven for 25-35 minutes or until golden brown and center is bubbly. Careful it’s hot Enjoy!

Complete meal with a green salad and whole wheat roll.

Midday or after dinner snack:

Smoothies are always a good idea as snacks or even meal replacements.  You can make either of the ones below or pick up pre-made ones in your local grocery store.  If you make the ones below it is important to have a blender that can crush the ingredients to make the smoothie smooth.  If you don’t have a power house blender, then substitute the whole nuts in the recipes with slivered or chopped ones.

Fruit smoothie number 1 with protein

Place 1tablespoon almonds,1/2 teaspoon flax seed, ½ teaspoon chia seed, 1 cup spinach leaves, ½ cup kale leaves, ¼ cup water, ¼ cup almond milk, ½ cup pineapple, ½ granny smith apple sliced, 1 scoop protein powder ½ banana in a blender.  Blend until smooth.  Serve and Enjoy! Place remaining smoothie in the fridge.

Fruit smoothie number 2 without protein

2 oranges sliced, 1 banana, ½ cup spinach, ½ cup kale and 1.2 cup almond milk. Blend until smooth. Serve and Enjoy!  Place remaining smoothie in fridge.

Fruit smoothie number 3

1 cup vanilla yogurt, ½ cup milk, a handful of blueberries, strawberries, raspberries and ¼ cup whey powder.  Blend until smooth.

Other healthy snacks

Sliced Apples

Apple slices with peanut or almond butter.  Slice ½ apple and spread 1 – 2 tablespoons peanut or almond butter. Serve with a glass of milk.

Trail mix

Mix together ½ cups unsalted peanuts, ½ cup slivered almonds, ½ cup raisins, ½ cup mini chocolate chips or M&M’s, ¼ cup flax seed, ½ cup wheat Chex’s, ½ cup sunflower seeds.  Makes enough for several snacks.

Turkey roll-ups

2 pieces of sliced turkey, 2 slices provolone or Swiss cheese, ½ cucumber sliced thinly and yogurt dressing.  Take each turkey slice and place flat.  Place a slice of the cheese on each turkey slice followed by half of the cucumber slices and a teaspoon of yogurt dressing.  Roll up the turkey slice and eat.