Home > Nutrition > Reviewing Ellie Krieger's The Food You Crave

Reviewing Ellie Krieger's The Food You Crave

March 24, 2010

A couple of weeks ago, I committed to cook dinner once a week from one of the following cookbooks and then to report back here as to whether the cookbook was any good, in my humble opinion.

After making the low calorie black bean brownies from Rocco Dispirito’s Now Eat This!, I was a little gun shy about jumping into these healthy cookbooks again.  I still can’t believe that one’s on the NY Times bestseller list – to each his/her own, I guess.  But today, my faith in healthy cookbooks was not just restored, but I think I may have found the holy grail of healthy eating cookbooks – Ellie Krieger’s The Food You Crave.  Ellie also has a new book out (So Easy), but The Food You Crave is now a couple of years old and has received a couple of awards, including a coveted James Beard award.  You may also recognize Ellie Krieger from her Food Network show, Healthy Appetite.  I’ve seen the show a few times, but I’ve never really watched it as much as some of the other shows on the Food Network (which may explain why I’m now on this weight loss journey!).  Anyhow, around the time I was assembling the list of healthy cookbooks I’d review as part of this series, my nutritionist Rachel told me about The Food You Crave, and I added it to the list.

I’m sure glad I did!  I’ve been thumbing through the book for a week or so now, and first, it’s just really well done as a cookbook.  The book is easy to navigate and has beautiful photography, plus a number of good pages that provide tips for healthy eating and quick ideas for things like simple breakfasts, what to have for lunch, etc.  It’s really well-done.  And the food itself is simply prepared.  Not a ton of obscure dietetic ingredients, but real, nutritious foods, put together in delicious ways.  Ellie Krieger is a registered dietitian, giving her credibility as a nutrition expert (and evident in the wonderful nutritional information provided for each recipe), but what becomes evident as you prepare and taste her food is that Ellie is pretty darn talented as a cook, too.

I started my day long exploration of The Food You Crave this morning with a Peanut Butter Split Smoothie, which is basically banana, peanut butter, skim milk, and yogurt – all ingredients I already had on hand.  Well, it was fantastic.  I’m a peanut butter fiend, and this gave me my fix for the day!  With a meager amount of the all-natural unsweetened peanut butter, I wasn’t sure if I’d like this or not, but it worked – perfectly!  You can tell some work and thought was put into these recipes’ proportions and ingredients, which can’t be said for all cookbooks, so I was impressed.

I made two more recipes from The Food You Crave at dinner tonight.  Mom’s Turkey Meatloaf and Smashed Potatoes with Sour Cream and Chives.  Both were easy, clearly written, and awesome!!!  I would describe Ellie Krieger’s recipes as very clean.  The ingredients are good, fresh, real food (no gimmicky, obscure substitutions here), and they work really well.  The meatloaf may well be the best, most moist meatloaf I’ve ever tasted, which is pretty amazing considering it’s made with turkey breast!  And the potatoes were awesome at only 130 calories per serving.  I paired the recipes with a simple sauteed rappini, and it was a fantastic meal!

I highly recommend The Food You Crave, and in what is truly the highest compliment I can pay a cookbook, I’ll be returning to this one soon, long before I finish reviewing the other books in this series.  I really believe this may become my go-to cookbook in the near future.  If you want to learn more about it, simply click on the image of The Food You Crave in the slide show of all four books above to check it out.

Up next week in my cookbook review’s: Devin Alexander’s I Can’t Believe It’s Not Fattening!

  1. March 24, 2010 at 10:02 PM

    Awww man, you keep posting these and I’m going to have to start actually cooking my meals again.

    Oh, wait, thats a good thing. WooT!

    Great review!

    • March 24, 2010 at 10:17 PM

      It’s been a shift for me – this was a great way to manipulate myself into cooking again! LOL

  2. March 24, 2010 at 10:21 PM

    I can’t believe I hadn’t heard of this cookbook. I am helping a lady here in my town and she was looking for a new cookbook. I can recommend this one to her!

    • March 24, 2010 at 10:23 PM

      It’s really good – I can’t wait to cook my next meal from it! And that peanut butter smoothie is going to become a regular breakfast for me, too!

  3. March 24, 2010 at 10:44 PM

    The PB smoothie sounds so good. Do you think someone that hates yogurt would like it??

    • March 24, 2010 at 10:47 PM

      Probably! I’ve gotten pretty used to yogurt, so I don’t really notice the yogurt “twang” anymore. (This doesn’t include greek yogurt, which I can’t stomach at all!) This really was mainly the peanut butter and banana flavors coming through, though, so I think you might like it okay.

  4. March 25, 2010 at 5:12 AM

    I like Ellie Krieger’s recipes, too! I made her Herbed Bulgur-Lentil Pilaf this past weekend, and I thought it was really good. I think she’s an expert at maximizing flavor while reduce calories and fat.

  5. March 25, 2010 at 9:45 AM

    That book sounds great! I’m sure its good and I love peanut butter but I can’t wrap my mind around peanut butter smoothies — I don’t know why either. A lot of people drink these.

    Good review!

  6. March 25, 2010 at 12:50 PM

    I’ve always been scared to try new cookbooks because I rarely end up liking any of the recipes. But this one sounds great because she uses real food. I really can’t stand fake diet-y foods!

  7. March 26, 2010 at 12:34 AM

    Wow! I think I’ll have to try this cookbook–sounds way better than the first cookbook! Loving this series you’re doing.

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