Bethenny’s Lasagna + Bon Bons

July 29, 2012 · 7 comments


One thing you will learn pretty quickly from reading my blog is that I’m a huge Bethenny Frankel advocate. I don’t necessarily agree or relate with everything she says or does, but I honestly don’t remember the last time someone has inspired and influenced me so much. In fact, it was Bethenny’s book, A Place of Yes, that prompted me to become a Health Coach! (More on that another time.)

And one thing I have learned about cooking and entertaining guests from Bethenny’s book, The SkinnyGirl Dish, is to KEEP.IT.SIMPLE. As silly as it may seem, Luke and I tend to bicker the most in the kitchen! My non-sensical ways of doing things clash with his methodical way of thinking, so when we invited our friends Lorraine and Christopher over for dinner, I knew it was important to make a stress-free meal.

What’s easier (or tastier) than bruschetta? Tomatoes+olive oil+pesto+shredded cheese+toast. Pop it under the broiler for about 60 seconds and you’re done.

We decided on Bethenny’s Classic Lasagna for the main course. Who doesn’t like lasagna? I followed this recipe pretty closely, although the proportions didn’t quite work out for me for some reason, so I left out a layer of meat. I also used no-boil lasagna noodles from Trader Joe’s which made the cooking process that much easier. You can also cut the parsley and mix it with the ricotta cheese in advance so you’re not doing everything at once.

So yeah, lasagna is loaded with cheese, but if you get lower fat versions (not non-fat, ick!) and stick to one serving, it ain’t no thang. And when you load up on veggies, it’s that much easier to fill up and pass on a second helping.

I made a spinach salad with cherry tomatoes, onion, toasted walnuts and a drizzle of Bethenny’s Simple Salad dressing: Juice of 1 lemon+2 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil+Salt/Pepper to taste. I also added a drizzle of pure honey to cut the sour taste. Bethenny includes dijon mustard to her recipe, but I like it just fine without it.  The asparagus was cooked at 400 for about 13 minutes with a healthy drizzle of EVOO + plenty of pepper and dash of salt. After cooking, I always squeeze lemon over my veggies like crazy—this simple step really makes a difference and adds a nice fresh touch!

I knew that there would be a good amount of boozin’ throughout dinner, which is why I kept dessert small.

In the cup: Frozen grapes+strawberries+Trader Joe’s Bons Bons. Easy, tasty and refreshing—it was the perfect way to end the meal.

Tell me: What’s your favorite go-to meal when cooking for guests? (I could use some new ideas!)


{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

sarahkwhitaker July 30, 2012 at 5:24 pm

One of my go-to meals for easy entertaining is a frittata. I always have eggs on hand and SOMETHING else that can be added (potatoes, cheese, asparagus, etc). You should try raw lasagna sometime! Veggies and cashew cheese…surprisingly good and easy! Oh, and i am obsessed with frozen grapes right now…more fun than even popsicles, and healthier too. Love the new blog Elle, congrats!


Ellen July 31, 2012 at 11:35 am

Great idea, Sarah! And I agree with you…if you have eggs and some sort of veggies in the fridge, you can make a tasty meal. Thanks for checking out the blog! :)


Wannabe Health Nut August 6, 2012 at 6:09 pm

 @sarahkwhitaker I’m with you, Sarah! I have always said that a tasty dish can be easily whipped up if you have eggs and veggies on hand. I’m undecided on the raw lasagna, but I’ll let you know if I try it!


lorrainesullivan July 31, 2012 at 5:54 pm

It was all sooooo delicious! And Christopher still raves about the frozen grapes!


Wannabe Health Nut August 6, 2012 at 6:10 pm

 @lorrainesullivan LOL! You are such a good cook, I had a lot to live up to. :) Glad you enjoyed the meal and the super-special grapes! ;)


Sunkist809 August 21, 2012 at 5:19 pm

I love to make Quiche and a salad when entertaining.  Quiche is so versatile – brunch with fruit, mimosas and coffee or for dinner with wine and a side salad – even a small slice as a snack is healthy and filling! I almost always use whole wheat crust and I load up the veggies and use low fat swiss and gruyere cheeses.  You can adjust the ingredients as you see fit depending on time of the meal and taste preferences for guests. One of my favorites is asparagus and prosciutto! :)


Wannabe Health Nut August 21, 2012 at 5:37 pm

 @Sunkist809 I’m always a fan of eggs for dinner—great idea! I will definitely keep these ideas in mind the next time I have guests over. Thank you in advance. :)


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