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Power Up with Plant Protein

09/04/2017 01:30 ● Published by Family Features

When it comes to getting energy from the food you eat, it's no secret that protein packs a powerful punch. However, research shows certain plant-based proteins, like peanuts, may carry additional benefits.

According to a Harvard School of Public Health study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, substituting plant-based proteins like peanuts for animal proteins and low-quality carbohydrates can result in lowering diabetes risk by 7-21 percent. Because peanuts are known as a low glycemic index food due to their slow digestion that causes sugar to gradually be released into the bloodstream, they can have positive effects on blood sugar control.

Find more nutritional information and ways to include peanuts in your diet at gapeanuts.com.

Chicken Pad Thai

Servings: 4

  • 1 pound chicken breast
  • freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 teaspoons chili garlic sauce
  • 3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 medium zucchini, spiralized (about 1 cup)
  • 2 medium carrots, spiralized (about 1 cup)
  • 1 cup cooked pad thai stir-fry noodles
  • 1 cup bean sprouts
  • 1 cup thinly sliced cabbage
  • 1 lime, quartered
  • 1/4 cup unsalted peanuts, crushed
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  1. Season chicken with pepper, to taste. In large, nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, heat olive oil and cook chicken until fully cooked and juices are clear. Remove chicken from pan and allow to rest 5 minutes before slicing.
  2. To make sauce: In small bowl, whisk together honey, chili garlic sauce, rice wine vinegar, soy sauce, peanut butter and water.
  3. Add zucchini, carrots, rice noodles and chicken to pan; pour sauce over and toss to coat. Toss in bean sprouts and cabbage. Serve with lime wedge, crushed peanuts and cilantro.

Nutritional information per serving: 295 calories, 12 g total fat, 2 g saturated fat, 60 mg cholesterol, 792 mg sodium, 22 g carbohydrates, 4 g fiber, 9 g sugar, 27 g protein, 109% vitamin A, 46% vitamin C, 7% calcium, 10% iron.

Peanut Butter Banana Overnight Oats

Servings: 2

  • 1/4 cup powdered peanut butter
  • 3/4 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 2 teaspoons ground chia seeds
  • 1 1/2 cups unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup small banana, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon peanuts, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon peanut butter
  1. In medium bowl, stir together powdered peanut butter, oats, chia seeds, coconut milk and vanilla extract.
  2. Divide evenly into mason jars or storage containers and refrigerate overnight.
  3. Before serving, add banana slices, chopped peanuts and peanut butter to each.

Nutritional information per serving: 280 calories, 12 g total fat, 4 g saturated fat, 135 mg sodium, 36 g carbohydrates, 7 g dietary fiber, 8 g sugar, 10 g protein, 8% vitamin A, 4% vitamin C, 35% calcium, 13% iron.

Baked Salmon with Peanut Butter Glaze

Servings: 4

  • 1 pound salmon
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter
  • 2 teaspoons chili garlic sauce
  • 1/4 cup 100 percent orange juice
  1. Heat oven to 400° F and line baking sheet with aluminum foil. Place salmon on baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and season with pepper, to taste. Bake salmon 15-20 minutes until cooked through.
  2. In small saucepot over medium-low heat, whisk together peanut butter, chili garlic sauce and orange juice, and cook until warm.
  3. To serve, pour peanut butter glaze over salmon.

Nutritional information per serving: 334 calories, 23 g total fat, 5 g saturated fat, 50 mg cholesterol, 173 mg sodium, 5 g carbohydrates, 1 g fiber, 3 g sugar, 27 g protein, 8% vitamin C, 4% calcium, 3% iron.

Vegetarian Nourish Bowl

Servings: 4

  • 1 cup large, diced butternut squash
  • 16 ounces Brussels sprouts, halved
  • 1 medium red onion, large diced
  • 1/2 can (8 ounces) reduced-sodium garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 head garlic (about 10 cloves), peeled
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 teaspoon Sriracha sauce
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped peanuts
  1. Heat oven to 400° F and line rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. On prepared baking sheet, arrange butternut squash, Brussels sprouts, onion, garbanzo beans and garlic; toss vegetables in olive oil and season with pepper, to taste.
  2. Roast 30-40 minutes until slightly golden in color. Halfway through baking, shake vegetables or turn over to ensure even browning.
  3. To make dressing: Mix together lemon juice, water, Sriracha sauce and peanut butter.
  4. To serve, top quinoa with roasted veggies, crushed peanuts and drizzle of lemon-peanut butter sauce.

Nutritional information per serving: 323 calories, 14 g total fat, 2 g saturated fat, 308 mg sodium, 42 g carbohydrates, 11 g fiber, 5 g sugar, 13 g protein, 92% vitamin A, 197% vitamin C, 11% calcium, 28% iron.

Sponsored by Georgia Peanut Commission

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