6 Delicious Recipes to Lose Weight and Help Digestion

From the new Reader's Digest book 21-Day Tummy, these recipes are made with foods that help digestion and also work to shrink your stomach.

By Liz Vaccariello from 21-Day Tummy (Reader's Digest Association) and
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    Andrew Purcell

    Twice-Baked Potatoes

    Hands-on Time: 20 minutes
    Total Time: 30 minutes
    Makes: 4 servings

    • 2 russet (baking) potatoes (8 ounces each)
    • 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
    • 2 teaspoons chia seeds
    • 1 large red bell pepper, diced
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
    • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

    1. Pierce the potatoes and microwave on high for 7 to 10 minutes (depending on the oven), or until firm-tender. Let sit for 2 minutes, then halve lengthwise and set aside until cool enough to handle.
    2. Meanwhile, in a medium nonstick skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the chia seeds and cook for 1 minute to toast. Add the bell pepper, salt, and black pepper and cook for 3 to 5 minutes or until softened.
    3. Preheat the broiler.
    4. Scrape the potato flesh into a bowl, leaving a 1/4-inch shell behind. Add the bell pepper mixture and 1/4 cup cheese to the bowl and mash in.
    5. Place the potato shells on a baking sheet. Spoon the filling back into the potato shells. Sprinkle with the 2 tablespoons cheese and broil for several minutes to brown the cheese.

    Per serving: 163 calories • 6g protein • 5g fat (1.5g saturated) • 3g fiber • 24g carbohydrate • 268mg sodium • 40mg magnesium


    If you have gluten issues: Choose a gluten-free brand of chia seeds.

    Learn more about the plan here. You can also order 21-Day Tummy wherever books are sold.

    Andrew Purcell

    Pork Satay Salad

    Hands-on Time: 20 minutes
    Total Time: 55 minutes
    Makes: 4 (3-cup) servings

    •1 pound pork tenderloin
    •1/2 teaspoon mild to medium chili powder (onion and garlic free)
    • 3/4 teaspoon coarse (kosher) salt
    •3 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
    •2 tablespoons natural peanut butter, at room temperature
    •2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
    •4 cups 2-inch-wide romaine lettuce strips
    •1 Belgian endive, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced crosswise
    •2 cups 1-inch papaya chunks
    •2 navel oranges, peeled and cut into segments

    1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Place the pork on a rimmed baking sheet and rub with the chili powder, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt, and 1 teaspoon of the oil. Roast the pork for 25 to 30 minutes, or until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the pork registers 145°F. Let the pork rest for 10 minutes before thinly slicing.

    2. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together the peanut butter, lime juice, the remaining 2 teaspoons oil, and the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt.

    3. On a large plate, layer the romaine, endive, papaya, orange segments, and pork. Drizzle with the dressing and serve immediately.

    Per serving: 279 calories • 25g protein • 11g fat (2g saturated) • 5g fiber • 21g carbohydrate • 423mg sodium • 56mg magnesium

    If you have gluten issues: Choose a gluten-free brand of chili powder.

    Learn more about the plan here. You can also order 21-Day Tummy wherever books are sold.

    Andrew Purcell

    Cheesy Scrambled Egg "Quesadillas"

    Hands-on Time: 20 minutes
    Total Time: 20 minutes
    Makes: 4 (½ quesadilla) servings


    •3 large egg whites, or 1/2 cup liquid egg whites
    •1/2 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt
    •1/2 cup oat bran
    •1/2 teaspoon salt
    •4 tablespoons water
    •Olive oil spray
    •4 large eggs
    •2 wedges (3/4 ounce each) light spreadable cheese

    1. In a large bowl, whisk together the egg whites, yogurt, oat bran, salt, and 2 tablespoons of the water until well combined.

    2. Coat a large nonstick skillet with cooking spray. Spoon 1/3 cup of the mixture into the pan and, with a silicone spatula, spread it out to a 5-inch wrap. Cook for 15 seconds or until golden brown on the underside and bubbles appear on the top. Flip the wrap over and cook for 15 seconds or until the underside is done. Repeat with the remaining batter to make 4 wraps.

    3. Off the heat, coat the same skillet with cooking spray. In a small bowl, whisk together the whole eggs and the remaining 2 tablespoons water. Heat the pan over low heat, add the eggs and cheese, and cook, stirring constantly, for 4 minutes or until the eggs are just set.

    4. Divide the eggs between 2 of the wraps, top with the remaining wraps, cut in half, and serve.

    Per serving: 153 calories • 15g protein • 7.5g fat (2.5g saturated) • 2g fiber • 10g carbohydrate • 544mg sodium • 36mg magnesium If you have gluten issues: Choose gluten-free brands of Greek yogurt, oat bran, and light spreadable cheese.

    Learn more about the plan here. You can also order 21-Day Tummy wherever books are sold.

    Andrew Purcell

    Hearty Roasted Vegetable Soup

    Hands-on Time: 20 minutes
    Total Time: 1 hour
    Makes: 4 (2-cup) servings


    •1.5 pounds plum tomatoes, cut into 1-inch chunks
    •1 pound russet (baking) potatoes, peeled, quartered, and thinly sliced
    •3/4 pound green beans, cut into 1-inch lengths
    •1 large carrot (8 ounces), thinly sliced
    •2 small parsnips (6 ounces total), thinly sliced
    •4 scallion greens, thinly sliced (1/2 cup)
    •1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
    •4 cups water
    •1 teaspoon dried basil
    •1/2 teaspoon salt
    •1/4 teaspoon black pepper
    •2/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
    •1/2 cup sliced almonds

    1. Preheat the oven to 425°F. On a large rimmed baking sheet, toss together the tomatoes, potatoes, green beans, carrot, parsnips, scallion greens, and oil. Roast, turning the vegetables occasionally, for 30 minutes, or until lightly browned and crisp-tender.

    2. Transfer the vegetables and any juices on the baking sheet to a large saucepan. Add the water, basil, salt, and pepper and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce to a simmer and cook, uncovered, for 10 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.

    3. Ladle the soup into bowls and top with the cheese and nuts.

    Per serving: 368 calories • 14g protein • 15g fat (3.5g saturated) • 11g fiber • 50g carbohydrate • 559mg sodium • 125mg magnesium

    Learn more about the plan here. You can also order 21-Day Tummy wherever books are sold.

    Andrew Purcell

    Salmon with Preserved Lemon

    Hands-on Time: 20 minutes
    Total Time: 20 minutes
    Makes: 4 servings

    •1 lemon
    •1/2 teaspoon coarse (kosher) salt
    •4 skin-on salmon fillets (5 ounces each)
    •1 1/4 teaspoons garam masala
    •1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
    •1 teaspoon slivered almonds or pine nuts
    •1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
    •1 tablespoon water
    •1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

    1. Preheat the oven to 450°F.

    2. With a vegetable peeler, pull off all the lemon zest in strips. In a small saucepan of boiling water, cook the zest for 2 minutes to blanch. Drain and repeat the blanching in new water. Drain again. Rinse under cold water and drain well. Coarsely chop and transfer to a small bowl. Sprinkle with ¼ teaspoon of the salt and let stand while the salmon roasts.

    3. Place the salmon, skin side down, on a rimmed baking sheet and rub with 1 teaspoon of the garam masala and the remaining ¼ teaspoon salt. Roast for 10 minutes, or until the salmon is just cooked through. Using a thin-bladed metal spatula, lift the salmon off the baking sheet, leaving the skin behind.

    4. Drain any liquid from the bowl with the lemon zest. Add the lemon juice, almonds, oil, water, parsley, and the remaining ¼ teaspoon garam masala to the bowl and toss to combine.

    5. Serve the salmon with the lemon mixture on top.

    Per serving: 268 calories • 27g protein • 16g fat (3g saturated) • 1.5g fiber • 3g carbohydrate • 315mg sodium • 42mg magnesium

    If you have gluten issues: Choose a gluten-free brand of garam masala.


    Learn more about the plan here. You can also order 21-Day Tummy wherever books are sold.

    Andrew Purcell

    Strawberry Soufflé-lets

    Hands-on Time: 10 minutes
    Total Time: 25 minutes
    Makes: 6 servings

    •1 small ripe banana (6 ounces), cut up
    •4 ounces frozen strawberries, thawed
    •2 large eggs, separated
    •1 tablespoon turbinado sugar
    •1 tablespoon brown rice flour
    •1 egg white, at room temperature
    •Cream of tartar
    •3 teaspoons pure maple syrup

    1. Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat to 400°F. Line 6 cups of a jumbo muffin tin with paper liners.

    2. In a mini food processor, process the banana and strawberries to a smooth puree. Add the egg yolks, sugar, and flour and process until smooth. Transfer to a large bowl.

    3. In another bowl, with an electric mixer, beat the 3 egg whites with a generous pinch of cream of tartar until stiff peaks form. Scoop about one-third of the whites into the fruit mixture and whisk to lighten the mixture. Gently fold in the remaining whites until no streaks of egg white show.

    4. Divide the soufflé mixture among the muffin cups. Bake for 11 to 13 minutes, or until puffed and browned on top. To serve, transfer the whole muffin cup to a small ramekin. Poke a hole in the top of the soufflé and drizzle 1/2 teaspoon maple syrup down into the soufflé. Serve immediately.

    Per serving: 82 calories • 3g protein • 2g fat (0.5g saturated) • 1g fiber • 14g carbohydrate • 34mg sodium • 13mg magnesium

    Learn more about the plan here. You can also order 21-Day Tummy wherever books are sold.

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