Can cool weather comfort foods ever be good for you? When you start with healthful ingredients, you can end up giving yourself a satisfying meal and a nutritional boost.
Tomato products should be a key ingredient for any meal as they are some of the healthiest foods you can have in your kitchen.

Scientific studies suggest that tomato products may protect the body against cardiovascular disease, inflammation and various forms of cancer. All of that, plus they are a very affordable way to get an extra serving of vegetables.

For more delicious ways to give your favorite comfort foods a healthful boost, visit



Chili Colorado

Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 2 hours, 20 minutes (mostly unattended)
Makes 4 to 6 servings
2 pounds beef round, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 large onion, peeled and chopped
1 14 1/2-ounce can Mexican-style diced tomatoes
1 6-ounce can tomato paste
1 4-ounce can diced green chiles
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano leaves and ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon salt or to taste
Freshly ground pepper to taste

Diced avocado, shredded Mexican blend cheese, cilantro leaves (optional)

Stir together all ingredients except optional toppings and bring to a boil over medium high heat. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 2 hours or until beef is tender. Remove cover and cook over medium heat until sauce is thick. Season with pepper and serve with diced avocado, shredded cheese and cilantro leaves, if you like.

Nutritional analysis per serving: Calories: 330, Fat: 9g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Trans Fat: 0g, Cholesterol: 120mg, Sodium: 790mg, Potassium: 742mg, Carbohydrates: 19g, Fiber: 5g, Sugar: 11g, Protein: 42g, Vitamin A: 30%, Vitamin C: 30%, Calcium: 6%, Iron: 25%


Pulled Pork

Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 5 hours to 10 hours
Makes 10 servings
4 pounds boneless pork loin roast, cut into 2-inch cubes
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon each: paprika and chili powder
2 teaspoons ground cumin and dried oregano
1-1/4 teaspoons each: garlic salt and cinnamon
1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
1/3 cup lime juice
1-1/2cups chopped onion
2 to 3 minced chipotle peppers plus
2 to 3 tablespoons adobo sauce from can
Soft rolls or tortillas

Cut pork into 2-inch cubes. Stir together dry seasonings in a small bowl and sprinkle over pork, turning to coat all sides. Place in a large slow cooker with tomatoes, lime juice and onion. Cover and cook on high for 5 hours or low for 10 hours.

Remove pork from slow cooker with a slotted spoon and place in a large bowl; shred using 2 forks or a potato masher. Stir in enough cooking liquid to make pork saucy and add chipotle peppers and adobo sauce to taste. Serve on warm rolls or tortillas with remaining sauce, if desired.

Nutritional analysis per serving (without bread or tortillas): Calories: 310, Fat: 11g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Trans Fat: 0g, Cholesterol: 105mg, Sodium: 300mg, Potassium: 787mg, Carbohydrates: 13g, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 4g, Protein: 40g, Vitamin A: 25%, Vitamin C: 20%, Calcium: 8%, Iron: 15%


Tomato Risotto with Portabella Mushrooms

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: about 40 minutes
Makes 4 servings
2 tablespoons butter
1 cup Arborio or short grain rice
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 large shallots, peeled and thinly sliced
1 teaspoon dried basil
4 cups vegetable stock or reduced-sodium broth, warmed
1 8-ounce can tomato sauce
1/3 cup white wine
1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes, drained and minced
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese, plus extra for topping
4 small portabella mushrooms

Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat; stir in rice, garlic and shallots. Cook for 10 minutes or until vegetables are soft; stir in basil. Reduce heat to low and stir in stock, 2/3 cup at a time, cooking and stirring until stock is absorbed before adding more to skillet.

Stir in tomato sauce, wine and sun-dried tomatoes; cook over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until excess liquid has cooked off and rice is thick; stir in Parmesan.

Meanwhile, while rice is cooking, grill or broil mushrooms. Place spoonfuls of risotto inside each mushroom and sprinkle with additional Parmesan, if desired.

Nutritional analysis per serving: Calories: 420, Fat: 11g, Saturated Fat: 5g, Trans Fat: 0g, Cholesterol: 20mg, Sodium: 960mg, Potassium: 1265mg, Carbohydrates: 67g, Fiber: 6g, Sugar: 10g, Protein: 15g, Vitamin A: 35%, Vitamin C: 25%, Calcium: 15%, Iron: 15%


Italian Tomato Eggs

Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: about 1 hour
Makes 6 servings
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for brushing on bread
1 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup thinly sliced and chopped fennel or anise (optional)
1-1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 28-ounce can tomato puree
2 teaspoons dried Italian herb seasoning
1 teaspoon sugar, or to taste
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
6 1-inch-thick slices rustic Italian bread
1-1/4 cups shredded Italian blend cheese
6 fried eggs, seasoned with salt and pepper
Shredded Parmesan cheese and snipped
fresh basil

Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add onion, fennel and garlic; cook, stirring frequently, for 10 minutes to soften. Stir in tomato puree, herbs and sugar. Cook, uncovered, over medium-low heat for 45 minutes or until tomato sauce is very thick, stirring frequently to make sure sauce does not scorch on the bottom.

Brush one side of each bread slice with olive oil and place on a foil-lined baking sheet. Top each with 3 tablespoons shredded cheese and place in a hot oven or under the broiler for a few minutes or until cheese is melted and edges are lightly browned. Top each with a fried egg, a generous spoonful of tomato sauce, Parmesan cheese and fresh basil to taste.

Recipe may be doubled.

Time saving tip: Substitute 2 cups prepared pasta sauce for tomato sauce recipe above.

Nutritional analysis per serving: Calories: 350, Fat: 15g, Saturated Fat: 6g, Trans Fat: 0g, Cholesterol: 235mg, Sodium: 1030mg, Potassium: 712mg, Carbohydrates: 37g, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 9g, Protein: 18g, Vitamin A: 25%, Vitamin C: 30%, Calcium: 30%, Iron: 25%

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