Cold Weather Comfort Food


Winter in Vancouver is finally here and so are the cravings for warm, savory, delightful cold weather comfort food. Here are a few options that will keep you happy and full without adding those extra unwanted holiday pounds.

Spicy Tuna Melts


  • 8 oz pouched low-sodium tuna or canned low-sodium water-packed tuna, drained
  • 1/3 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 rib celery, diced
  • 3 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 tbsp lime juice
  • 1/2 tsp each chile powder and ground cumin
  • pinch cayenne pepper
  • sea salt and black pepper to taste
  • 4 slices whole-grain bread, lightly toasted
  • 1 cup shredded low-fat mozzarella-cheddar cheese blend


  1. Preheat oven to 400F
  2. In a medium bowl, combine tuna, yogurt, celery, onions, lime juice, spices, and salt/pepper.
  3. place bread on a parchment-lined baking sheet and spread tuna mix on each slice evenly. Top each with 1/4 cup cheese. Bake in oven for 4 to 6 minutes, until cheese is melted and bubbling, and tuna is warm.
  4. Serves 4

Nutritients per melt: Calories: 237, Total Fat: 7g, Sat. Fat: 4g, Omega-3s: 201mg, Omega-6s: 490mg, Carbs: 14g, Fiber: 3g, Sugars: 2g, Protein: 25g, Sodium: 390mg, Cholesterol: 37mg.


Beef Danube


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 1/2 lb lean top round steak, trimmed of fat and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1/2 tsp each sea salt and black pepper, divided
  • 1 large onion, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 10 oz carrots (approx 6 medium) cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 1/2 lb white potatoes (approx 6 medium) cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
  • 1 large tomato, seeded and diced
  • 2 cups low-sodium beef broth
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 2 tsp finely chopped thyme
  • 2 tsp finely chopped rosemary
  • 3/4 cup red wine
  • 1 10-oz bag frozed artichoke hearts (approx 3 cups) thawed
  • 1 cup frozen peas, thawed


  1. Heat oil in a large, deep, straight-sided saute pan on medium-high. Sprinkle steak with 1/4 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper, then brown in a pan for about 1 to 1 1 /2 minutes. Add onion, carrots, and garlic. Cook until beginning to brown, about 3 to 4 minutes more. Add potatoes and cook for another 2 minutes.
  2. Mix flour into pan, reduce heat to medium and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring constantly so mixture doesn’t burn. Add toamto, broth, and 2 cups water, scraping up brown bits from bottom of pan. Incrase heat and bring mixture to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Add bay leaves, thyme, and rosemary. Cover and cook for 45 minutes or until meat is tender.
  3. Add red wine, remaining 1/4 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper, and artichokes. Re-cover and simmer for 15 more mintues or until meat and vegetables are tender. Stir in peas, remove pan from heat and re-cover. Let stand for 5 mintues.
  4. Serves 8.

Nutrients per 1 1/2-cup serving: Calories: 340, Total Fat: 6g, Sat. Fat: 1.5g, Monounsaturated Fat: 2g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Carbs: 48g, Fiber: 8g, Sugars: 4g, Protein: 20g, Sodium: 247mg, Cholesterol: 38mg.


Creamy Carrot Soup


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 stalk celery, diced
  • 2 tsp fresh grated ginger
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 1 lb carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 medium potato, peeled and diced
  • 3 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 cup unsweetened light coconut milk
  • 1/4 tsp salt to taste
  • 6 tbsp pesto (optional)
  • 6 tbsp nonfat plain Greek yogurt (optional)


  1. In a large saucepan, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and celery and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 7 minutes or until onion is translucent. Add ginger, curry powder, cinnamon, and red pepper and cook, stirring, for 1 more minute. Add carrots, potato, and broth. Bring to a boil, then cover, reduce heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes or until vegetables are tender.
  2. Using a hand-held or countertop blender, puree soup in 2 batches. If using a coundertop blender, pour soup back into pot. Stir in coconut milk and salt. Serve immediately. Garnish with 1 tbsp pesto and 1 tbsp yogurt if desired.
  3. Serves 6

Nutrients per 1-cup serving: Calories: 127, Total Fat: 5g, Sat. Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 2g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.5g, Carbs: 19g, Fiber: 4g, Sugars: 7g, Protein: 2g, Sodium: 222mg, Cholesteral: 0mg.


Have any recipe suggestions? Looking for a way to make your favourite dishes healthier? Send me your questions and thoughts at !

Sarah Rathwell – Kalev Fitness Solution

w: t:604-568-6006