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Mom's Day Off: Quick-Meal Tips for Dads and Kids

Don't cook? Don't worry! You can still whip up a mom-worthy meal
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WebMD Weight Loss Clinic - Expert Column

If you're a mom who normally cooks for your family, there is one thing I'm pretty sure you DON'T want to do on Mother's Day -- and that's cook! (If you're married to such a mom, take heed.)

Even if mom's loved ones aren't exactly seasoned chefs, they can give her the day off from cooking by using products found in any supermarket. This isn't so much "cooking" as "assembling" the meal.

Still, we're not talking about junk food. All of the dishes described below can be part of a healthy diet, and we've emphasized trimming extra calories and fat grams and adding higher-fiber, higher-nutrient foods wherever possible.

So, Mom, print this article out and leave it where Dad and the kids can find it. Hint shamelessly. Then, prepare to be pampered!

Make Mom breakfast:

  • Bake reduced-fat cinnamon rolls (in the pop-fresh can from Pillsbury).
  • Use reduced-fat Bisquick and follow the directions on the box to make pancakes or waffles. If you are making pancakes, jazz them up by stirring in some frozen blueberries. If you are making waffles, top them with sliced strawberries and serve with a dollop of Light Cool Whip or light whipped cream (from the pressurized can).
  • Serve up a smoothie using frozen or fresh fruit, fruit juice, yogurt, and light vanilla ice cream or fat-free frozen yogurt.
  • Layer up a beautiful yogurt parfait. Use flavored yogurt, top with berries or sliced fruit, then low-fat granola. Repeat the layers, if there's room in the parfait glass.
  • Start with multigrain toaster waffles. Top with fresh fruit, a sprinkling of powdered sugar, and a dollop of Light Cool Whip or light whipped cream.
  • Grill a ham-and-cheese bagel open-faced in a toaster oven: Top a whole-grain bagel half with a couple of slices of extra-lean ham, and sprinkle with the shredded, reduced-fat cheese of your choice. Broil or toast until cheese is nicely melted.
  • Make a bird's-nest breakfast: Coat a 9-inch, nonstick frying pan generously with canola cooking spray while heating over medium-high heat. Top with a cup of frozen, shredded hash browns (choose some with 0 grams of fat per serving) and cook until nicely brown on bottom. Coat the tops of the hash browns with canola cooking spray, then flip them over and brown the other side. Once they're nicely browned, push hash browns all around the edges of the pan (to make an opening in the middle of the pan). Coat the hole with canola cooking spray, then crack an egg into the opening. Cover pan and let egg cook if you like it sunny side up. If you like it fried on both sides, turn the whole shebang over to fry the egg's other side. Serve with sliced tomato, catsup, and fresh fruit.
  • Serve any of the above breakfast items with a fresh fruit kabob (just line up fruit chunks on a skewer) or a melon slice topped with grapes or fresh berries.
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