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Can potatoes be healthy? 25 healthy potato recipes to prove they can!

Posted Nov 18 2009 10:02pm

healthy-potato-recipe

Did you know that potatoes are among the top 5 vegetables most eaten in America. It’s no surprise that the other four are tomatoes, iceberg lettuce and onions are also among the most eaten vegetables in America. It’s funny how many people who eat French fries on a regular basis actually think they’re eating one portion of the 5 to 10 fruits and vegetables that we should be eating daily to support optimal health.

Let’s get one thing straight: French fries (and chips just in case you were wondering) do NOT (they DO NOT) count as a vegetable when you are trying to eat 5 to 10 fruits and vegetables a day.

Yes, technically, fries are made with potatoes and potatoes are vegetables, but 1) you want to limit how many potatoes you eat in one week because they are high in starch and carbs and 2) once you’ve saturated those potatoes in unhealthy oil that has most likely been used over and over and over again to fry food, it just doesn’t count.

So, let me repeat myself:  French fries do NOT count as a vegetable when you are trying to eat 5 to 10 fruits and vegetables a day!

>>>> Now, should you eat potatoes or ban them from your diet?

Well, I’ll tell you what I do. I eat potatoes. I don’t eat them every week, but I do eat them. No, I don’t eat them boiled either (unless making a Niçoise salad).

Here’s how I like my potatoes:

* I like mashed potatoes (which I’ll eat once in a while and YES I do add cream, but no butter).

* Most of the times when I eat potatoes, I’ll cut them up in cubes, coat them with extra virgin olive oil, add some garlic powder, cayenne pepper (you can skip that if you don’t like spicy foods), sea salt from Italy and sometimes dried thyme. I then bake them in the oven for about 45 minutes and I’m in heaven.

I’ve gone as much as six weeks without eating potatoes, but most times I will have them a couple times a month.

Now when I eat out and I order a steak frites (steak and French fries), I never think twice (especially when I’m in the mood for a steak frites) because I rarely eat fries and never eat them at home.

Now, when it comes to the health benefits of potatoes, you can actually help your case by choosing red skin potatoes because the red colour of the skin contains antioxidants.

>>>> Potatoes contain these nutrients:

* They are high in vitamin C

* They are high in vitamin B6

* They are high in copper

* They are high in potassium

* They are high in manganese

* They are also rich in fibre

* They even contain antioxidants (especially if you choose red skin potatoes) to help fight free radicals

* Potatoes have been proven to help lower blood pressure

I know the potato gets a lot of bad press, but according to World’s Healthiest Foods, potatoes could rival broccoli in phytochemicals! In fact, research has “identified 60 different kinds of phytochemicals and vitamins in the skins and flesh of 100 wild and commercially grown potatoes.”

The purple potato is becoming more and more popular in restaurants and you can even find them at a number of specialty food shops. Here again, you have a potato full of antioxidants because of the deep purple colour of the skin.

>>> Here are 25 healthy potato recipes that you might want to try:

1) Braised Fennel with Tomatoes & Potatoes

2) Honey-Mustard Turkey Cutlets & Potatoes

3) Goat Cheese Mashed Potatoes

4) Loaded Twice-Baked Potatoes

5) Oven “Fries” (what a great alter alternative to fries)

6) Pea & New Potato Salad (Nye kartofler og Ærte Salat) (don’t worry if you cannot pronounce the last part of this recipe … it’s because it’s the original Swedish name for this potato salad recipe)

healthy-potato-recipes_3

7) Salt & Vinegar Roasted Potatoes

#8) Spicy Potato & Kale Soup

9) Spicy Stewed Potatoes & Spinach with Buttermilk (Aloo chaas)

10) Steak & Purple-Potato Salad

11) Parmesan Potato Skin Chips

12) Salt & Vinegar Roasted Potatoes

13) Skillet Gnocchi with Chard & White Beans

14) Spicy Stewed Potatoes & Spinach with Buttermilk

15) Warm Chicken Sausage & Potato Salad

healthy-potato-recipes_3

16) Artichoke & Potato Gratin

17) Warm Chicken Sausage & Potato Salad

18) Country Potato Salad

19) Borscht

healthy-potato-recipes_4

20) Lebanese Potato Salad

21) Steak & Potato Kebabs with Creamy Cilantro Sauce for Two

22) Feta & Olive Baked Potatoes

23) Italian Potato Salad

24) Twice-Baked Goat Cheese Potatoes

25) Crushed Red Potatoes with Winter Greens

Potatoes have been cultivated for thousands of years and they kept the people from Ireland from starving to death during the Great Irish Famine (1740-1741). It’s only recently that they’ve started appearing on the list of many “fad diets” as a diet buster.

Well yes, if you’re going to eat them deep fried or if you buy those mashed potato mixes that come out of a box (OMG – that just makes me want to pull my hair out), then yes you should avoid potatoes at all cost.

If you take time to make healthy potato recipes, then you’ll end up eating better food choices when it comes to potatoes.

Listen, if Italian women eat gnocchi (potato dumplings) and French women eat so many variations of potatoes and neither group of women are stressing over no-carb diets, then I will continue to look at my European sisters as inspiration when it comes to my diet.

Top photo by thebittenword.com

Photos of recipes from Eating Well

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