I'm all about Cooking Light recipes all the time. Hopefully you will find something that peaks your interest and inspires you to use Cooking Light everyday!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Chicken and Basil Calzones

Who doesn't like bread, melty cheese and great herbs?  Seriously, I can't imagine anyone who wouldn't. 

This is one of our favorite comfort food type recipes.  Using pre-made dough really speeds this along.  I have a feeling if you had kids this would be a fun recipe to make with them. We don't make any changes to this recipe, we love it just as it is!  The great thing for us is that we have 2 people in our household, so this makes enough for two meals!  Reheating is easy, toaster oven or microwave will do (toaster oven if you want the crust to remain crispy). 

As of today's post 12 people rated this a 5 out of 5, I think you will too.

Recipe by Karen Levin, Cooking Light, December 2008

Prep Time: 40 minutes
Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 calzone)


  • Cooking spray
  • 2  garlic cloves, minced
  • 1  pound  ground chicken breast
  • 3/4  cup  prepared pizza sauce
  • 1/4  teaspoon  crushed red pepper
  • 1/4  cup  chopped fresh basil
  • 1  (13.8-ounce) can refrigerated pizza crust dough
  • 1/2  cup  (2 ounces) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese


1. Preheat oven to 425°.
2. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add garlic and chicken to pan; sauté 5 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink, stirring to crumble. Stir in pizza sauce and pepper. Reduce heat, and simmer 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; stir in basil. Let stand 10 minutes.
3. Unroll dough onto a baking sheet coated with cooking spray; cut dough into quarters. Pat each portion into an 8 x 6–inch rectangle. Divide chicken mixture evenly among rectangles; top each serving with 2 tablespoons cheese. Working with one rectangle at a time, fold dough in half over filling, pinching edges to seal. Repeat procedure with remaining rectangles. Bake at 425° for 12 minutes or until golden.

Nutritional Information

Calories: 459 (14% from fat)
Fat: 7.1g (sat 1.8g,mono 1g,poly 0.4g)
Protein: 39.1g
Carbohydrate: 56.4g
Fiber: 3g
Cholesterol: 74mg
Iron: 3.7mg
Sodium: 919mg
Calcium: 111mg

Swordfish kebabs with Orange Basil sauce

Swordfish is so tasty. I would eat it more often if fish weren't so expensive. But we were able to get the frozen fillets at Wegman's which were pretty good (skip the Sea bass frozen fillets, they weren't good). 

This recipe is part of the 5 ingredient Cooking Light series that they have in each issue.  All you need are 5 ingredients: swordfish, orange, basil, olive oil and garlic. Since we have olive oil and garlic in the house and basil on the porch, all we needed was an orange and the swordfish.  I love the recipes that are flavorful with only a few ingredients.

We also pulled this dish together quickly. I don't know anyone who would refuse a recipe that calls for few ingredients and a small amount of prep time.

We served it with some instant potatoes to make things easy on ourselves.  The sauce/pesto is delicious, but I love basil like there is no tomorrow so I expected that I would!

Only 2 people reviewed this recipe on myrecipes.com, and they rated it a 4 out of 5.  I would rate it between a 4 and a 4.5. It's definitely a keeper if the non-fish lover likes it!

Recipe by Marge Perry, Cooking Light, June 2010

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 skewer and 2 tablespoons sauce)


  • The 5 Ingredients
  • 1  orange
  • 2  cups  basil leaves
  • 2  tablespoons  olive oil
  • 2  garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1 1/2  pounds  swordfish, cut into (1-inch) pieces


Directions: Prepare grill to medium-high heat. Squeeze orange to extract 1/4 cup juice. Combine orange juice, basil leaves, olive oil, and garlic cloves in a mini chopper; add 1/4 teaspoon salt. Process basil leaf mixture until finely chopped. Sprinkle 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper evenly over fish; thread fish onto 4 (12-inch) skewers. Grill fish 10 minutes or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork or until desired degree of doneness, turning occasionally. Drizzle fish with sauce, or serve sauce separately. Garnish sauce with orange rind, if desired.

Nutritional Information

Calories: 280
Fat: 14g (sat 2.9g,mono 7.7g,poly 2.6g)
Protein: 34.3g
Carbohydrate: 2.8g
Fiber: 0.7g
Cholesterol: 66mg
Iron: 1.9mg
Sodium: 449mg
Calcium: 36mg

Roast Chicken with Balsamic Bell Peppers AND Broccoli and cheese-stuffed potatoes

It's a two-in-one!  We made the Roast chicken with balsamic bell peppers for the first time a while back and decided to make these stuffed potatoes with it (in the background).  The potatoes we've made before and they are DELICIOUS!  Stuffed with broccoli, mushrooms, cheese and bacon, they're a great way to have an individual serving of comfort food without the whole pan of mac 'n cheese or mashed potatoes.

The balsamic pepper chicken was good, but not great. You may like it. We felt for the amount of time you had to put in to make this that it wasn't worth it.  If you like balsamic, you will like this dish.

We didn't make any changes to either of these dishes. 

As of today's post, 9 people rated the broccoli stuffed potatoes a 5 out of 5 (they really are tasty).  As for the balsamic chicken, 79 people rated it a 4 out of 5. 

The broccoli potatoes go into our cookbook, the chicken did not. Decide for yourself though whether you like them!

Roast chicken with balsamic bell peppers

Recipe by Ivy Manning, Cooking Light, January 2010

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 breast half and about 1/2 cup bell pepper mixture)


  • 3/4  teaspoon  salt, divided
  • 3/4  teaspoon  fennel seeds, crushed
  • 1/2  teaspoon  black pepper, divided
  • 1/4  teaspoon  garlic powder
  • 1/4  teaspoon  dried oregano
  • 4  (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breasts
  • 2  tablespoons  olive oil, divided
  • Cooking spray
  • 2  cups  thinly sliced red bell pepper
  • 1  cup  thinly sliced yellow bell pepper
  • 1/2  cup  thinly sliced shallots (about 1 large)
  • 1 1/2  teaspoons  chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1  cup  fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
  • 1  tablespoon  balsamic vinegar


1. Preheat oven to 450°.
2. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Combine 1/2 teaspoon salt, fennel seeds, 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, garlic powder, and oregano. Brush chicken with 1 1/2 teaspoons oil; sprinkle spice rub over chicken. Add 1 1/2 teaspoons oil to pan. Add chicken; cook 3 minutes or until browned. Turn chicken over; cook 1 minute. Arrange chicken in an 11 x 7–inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Bake at 450° for 10 minutes or until done.
3. Heat remaining olive oil over medium-high heat. Add bell peppers, shallots, and rosemary; sauté 3 minutes. Stir in broth, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Reduce heat; simmer 5 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high. Stir in vinegar, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper; cook 3 minutes, stirring frequently. Serve bell pepper mixture over chicken.

Nutritional Information

Calories: 282
Fat: 11g (sat 2.1g,mono 6.4g,poly 1.7g)
Protein: 35.9g
Carbohydrate: 8.8g
Fiber: 1.9g
Cholesterol: 94mg
Iron: 2mg
Sodium: 644mg
Calcium: 38mg
Broccoli and Cheese-Stuffed Potato
Cooking Light, January 2005

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 potato half)


  • 2  baking potatoes (about 1 3/4 pounds)
  • 2  bacon slices
  • 1  cup  broccoli florets
  • 1  cup  presliced mushrooms
  • 1/2  cup  chopped onion
  • 1  teaspoon  bottled minced garlic
  • 1/2  cup  (2 ounces) shredded reduced-fat Swiss cheese
  • 1/4  cup  fat-free sour cream
  • 2  tablespoons  fat-free milk
  • 1/2  teaspoon  black pepper
  • 1/8  teaspoon  salt


Preheat oven to 450°.
Pierce potatoes with a fork; arrange on paper towels in microwave oven. Microwave at high 16 minutes or until done, turning and rearranging potatoes after 8 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes.
While potatoes cook, cook bacon in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until crisp. Remove bacon from pan; reserve 1 teaspoon drippings in pan. Crumble bacon; set aside. Add broccoli, mushrooms, onion, and garlic to drippings in pan; cook 7 minutes or until tender, stirring frequently. Remove from heat.
Cut each potato in half lengthwise; scoop out pulp, leaving a 1/4-inch-thick shell. Combine potato pulp, onion mixture, cheese, and remaining ingredients; divide evenly among shells.
Bake at 450° for 8 minutes or until potatoes are thoroughly heated. Sprinkle with reserved bacon.

Nutritional Information

Calories: 245 (22% from fat)
Fat: 5.9g (sat 3.1g,mono 1.3g,poly 0.3g)
Protein: 12.5g
Carbohydrate: 42.3g
Fiber: 5.3g
Cholesterol: 17mg
Iron: 2.1mg
Sodium: 408mg
Calcium: 297mg

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Cauliflower-Apple Soup with Apple-Cider Reduction AND Buttermilk-Chive Biscuits

You know how Discovery channel does 'shark week'? Well this must be 'soup week'.  Here's another soup, but this one is warm; we made it last week. 

This calls for a lot of cauliflower (maybe a head and a half) but only one apple.  The preparation is very straightforward, made easier with a dutch oven and an immersion blender (thanks mom)!  

We've made this before, but I think we liked it better the first time. Either that or we've just found better soup recipes since then.  

The apple cider reduction makes this soup look very classy; my picture does not do it justice.  You definitely should use Madras curry powder for this recipe, regular curry powder just won't do.  

As of today's post 4 people rated this a 4 out of 5.   We served it with the Buttermilk Chive Biscuits which were FANTASTIC!  I'm a big fan of the sour cream, cheddar buttermilk drop biscuits (See Heaven and I love pigs) but these were equally great.  I was able to whip them up very quickly since I had all of the ingredients in house and chives on the porch (thanks mom for the chives).

As of today's post, for the biscuits, 14 people rated them 4 out of 5. I would give them a 5.

Recipe by Jackie Mills, Cooking Light, December 2008
Yield: 8 servings


  • 1  cup  apple cider
  • 2  teaspoons  olive oil
  • 2  cups  chopped onion
  • 2  teaspoons  Madras curry powder
  • 1  teaspoon  chopped garlic
  • 6  cups  cauliflower florets (about 1 1/2 pounds)
  • 5  cups  fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
  • 1  Gala apple, peeled, cored, and chopped
  • 1/3  cup  half-and-half
  • 2  teaspoons  fresh lemon juice
  • 3/4  teaspoon  kosher salt
  • 1/8  teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper
  • Coarsely ground black pepper (optional)


1. Bring the apple cider to a boil in a small saucepan. Cook until cider is reduced to 1/4 cup (about 5 minutes). Remove from heat, and cool to room temperature.
2. Heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion to pan; sauté 3 minutes. Add curry powder and garlic to pan; sauté 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add cauliflower, broth, and apple; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 15 minutes or until cauliflower is very tender.
3. Remove pan from heat; cool 5 minutes. Place half of cauliflower mixture in a blender. Remove center piece of blender lid (to allow steam to escape); secure blender lid on blender. Place a clean towel over opening in blender lid (to avoid splatters). Blend until smooth. Pour into a large bowl. Repeat procedure with remaining cauliflower mixture. Return to pot. Stir in half-and-half; cook over medium heat 5 minutes or until thoroughly heated (do not boil). Remove from heat; stir in juice, salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Ladle about 1 cup soup into each of 8 bowls; drizzle each serving with 1 1/2 teaspoons cider reduction. Garnish with coarsely ground pepper, if desired.

Nutritional Information

Calories: 98 (24% from fat)
Fat: 2.6g (sat 1g,mono 1.3g,poly 0.3g)
Protein: 4.2g
Carbohydrate: 16.1g
Fiber: 3.8g
Cholesterol: 4mg
Iron: 1mg
Sodium: 450mg
Calcium: 52mg
Buttermilk Chive Biscuits
Recipe by Cooking Light, December 2003

Yield: 20 biscuits (serving size: 1 biscuit)


  • 2  cups  all-purpose flour
  • 1  tablespoon  baking powder
  • 1/2  teaspoon  baking soda
  • 1/2  teaspoon  salt
  • 1/4  cup  chilled butter, cut into small pieces
  • 3/4  cup  low-fat buttermilk
  • 1  large egg
  • 1/4  cup  chopped fresh chives


Preheat oven to 400°.
Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl; cut in butter with a pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse meal. Combine buttermilk and egg; stir in chives. Add buttermilk mixture to flour mixture, and stir just until moist.
Turn dough out onto a heavily floured surface; knead lightly 5 times. Roll dough to a 1/2-inch thickness; cut with a 2-inch biscuit cutter. Place dough rounds, 1 inch apart, on a baking sheet. Bake at 400° for 12 minutes or until golden. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Note: To maximize the number of biscuits, gather the dough scraps after cutting and gently reroll to a 1/2-inch thickness. A light hand with the dough will ensure tender biscuits.

Nutritional Information

Calories: 74 (33% from fat)
Fat: 2.7g (sat 1.6g,mono 0.8g,poly 0.2g)
Protein: 2g
Carbohydrate: 10.2g
Fiber: 0.4g
Cholesterol: 17mg
Iron: 0.7mg
Sodium: 199mg
Calcium: 56mg

Golden Peach Soup with Shrimp and Crab Seviche

Isn't this like the prettiest dish you've ever seen?! Look at all the great colors!  We made this back in August, while it was still ridiculously hot here in the nation's cap, so it may not be a great choice now unless you live in a tropical climate.  It's a cold soup, and I don't think you can make it a 'warm' soup now that it's cooler.  But if you're ok with having cold soup in this weather, I highly recommend it.  We made this the week after making the Avocado-Buttermilk soup, and while that one is our favorite, this soup is a close second.  It's not as creamy as the other since there is no buttermilk, but the delicate peach flavor with the seviche is really awesome.

We followed this recipe exactly.  As of today's post 4 people rated it a 5 out of 5 (I was one of the four).

Recipe by Amelia Saltsman, Cooking Light, June 2010

Yield: 8 servings


  • Seviche:
  • 8  ounces  chopped cooked shrimp
  • 1  cup  fresh lime juice (about 6 large limes)
  • 4  ounces  lump crabmeat, shell pieces removed
  • 3  tablespoons  finely chopped red onion
  • 3  tablespoons  chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1  tablespoon  minced seeded jalapeño pepper
  • 1  tablespoon  extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4  teaspoon  salt
  • Soup:
  • 3  pounds  peaches, peeled, pitted, and chopped
  • 1/3  cup  fresh lime juice (about 2 large limes)
  • 1/2  teaspoon  salt
  • 1/4  cup  finely chopped red onion
  • 1/4  cup  matchstick-cut radishes
  • 1/4  cup  minced red bell pepper
  • 3  tablespoons  chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1  tablespoon  minced seeded jalapeño pepper
  • 1/4  teaspoon  fine sea salt
  • Cilantro sprigs (optional)


1. To prepare seviche, combine shrimp and 1 cup juice in a medium bowl; chill 1 hour. Add crab; toss gently to combine. Drain thoroughly; return shrimp and crab to bowl. Stir in 3 tablespoons onion and next 4 ingredients (through 1/4 teaspoon salt). Chill at least 30 minutes or up to 6 hours.
2. To prepare soup, combine peaches, 1/3 cup juice, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Place half of peach mixture in a blender; process until smooth. Pour pureed peach mixture into a large bowl. Repeat procedure with remaining peach mixture. Stir in 1/4 cup onion and next 4 ingredients (through 1 tablespoon jalapeño). Cover and chill 30 minutes.
3. Arrange 1/4 cup seviche in each of 8 small shallow bowls; ladle about 1/2 cup soup around seviche. Sprinkle evenly with sea salt; garnish with cilantro sprigs, if desired.

Nutritional Information

Calories: 139
Fat: 3g (sat 0.3g,mono 1.3g,poly 0.4g)
Protein: 10.2g
Carbohydrate: 20.6g
Fiber: 2.8g
Cholesterol: 53mg
Iron: 1.3mg
Sodium: 391mg
Calcium: 32mg

Blue Cheese-Stuffed Chicken with Buffalo Sauce, AND Sherried Green Beans and Mushrooms

 What do I love? Buffalo sauce. Give it to me on anything and I'll eat it. You know what would be a great idea for sushi? Buffalo marinated chicken with a chunk of blue cheese. Too bad I don't own a sushi restaurant, I think that would be a great idea. 

 Since I don't own a sushi restaurant, I'll settle for this recipe.  It's definitely healthier than going to a bar and eating a bunch of fried wings (though I wouldn't turn those down). 
The green beans and mushrooms are also great. My mom made them at Christmas last year and as Will Ferrel says as James Lipton 'they are a delight'. 

I've never made the 'buffalo sauce' with this--we just use our Frank's to stay true to the Buffalo flavor.  

As of today's post 31 people rated Buffalo chicken 4 out of 5 and for the green beans, 3 people rated it 5 out out 5.

Recipe by Mark Scarbrough, Cooking Light, March 2010

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 breast half and about 4 teaspoons sauce)


  • 1/2  cup  (2 ounces) crumbled blue cheese
  • 1  tablespoon  reduced-fat sour cream
  • 1  teaspoon  fresh lemon juice
  • 1/8  teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper
  • 4  (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
  • 1/4  cup  all-purpose flour
  • 2  tablespoons  2% reduced-fat milk
  • 1  large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1  cup  panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
  • 1 1/2  tablespoons  butter, divided
  • 6  tablespoons  finely chopped drained bottled roasted red bell peppers
  • 2  teaspoons  water
  • 1  teaspoon  Worcestershire sauce
  • 1  teaspoon  minced fresh garlic
  • 1/2  teaspoon  hot sauce


1. Preheat oven to 350°.
2. Combine first 4 ingredients in a small bowl. Cut a horizontal slit through thickest portion of each chicken breast half to form a pocket. Stuff cheese mixture evenly into pockets.
3. Place flour in a shallow dish. Combine milk and egg in a shallow dish, stirring well with a whisk. Place panko in a shallow dish. Working with 1 chicken breast half at a time, dredge chicken in flour, then dip in egg mixture; dredge in panko. Repeat procedure with remaining chicken, flour, egg mixture, and panko.
4. Heat a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon butter to pan; swirl until butter melts. Arrange chicken in pan; cook 4 minutes or until browned. Turn chicken over; place skillet in oven. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes or until done.
5. While chicken bakes, combine remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons butter, bell peppers, water, Worcestershire, and garlic in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a simmer; cook until butter melts. Remove from heat, and stir in hot sauce. Serve sauce with chicken.

Nutritional Information

Calories: 392
Fat: 12.9g (sat 6.7g,mono 3.4g,poly 1g)
Protein: 47.4g
Carbohydrate: 18.5g
Fiber: 1.1g
Cholesterol: 175mg
Iron: 2.3mg
Sodium: 421mg
Calcium: 120mg

Sherried Green Beans and Mushrooms

Recipe by Julianna Grimes, Cooking Light, December 2009

Yield: 8 servings (serving size: about 1 cup)


  • 1 1/2  pounds  haricots verts, trimmed
  • 3  tablespoons  butter, divided
  • 1/3  cup  thinly sliced shallots
  • 3/4  pound  exotic mushroom blend, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4  cup  dry sherry
  • 3  tablespoons  chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 2  teaspoons  chopped fresh thyme
  • 3/4  teaspoon  kosher salt
  • 1/2  teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper


1. Steam haricots verts 5 minutes or until crisp-tender; remove from heat.
2. Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add shallots to pan; sauté 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add mushrooms; sauté 5 minutes or until liquid evaporates. Stir in sherry; bring to a boil. Cook until liquid almost evaporates (about 2 minutes). Add remaining 1 tablespoon butter and haricots verts; cook 30 seconds or until thoroughly heated, tossing to coat. Remove from heat. Add parsley, thyme, salt, and pepper; toss to combine.

Nutritional Information

Calories: 80
Fat: 4.3g (sat 2.7g,mono 1.1g,poly 0.2g)
Protein: 2.4g
Carbohydrate: 8.3g
Fiber: 3.5g
Cholesterol: 11mg
Iron: 0.8mg
Sodium: 256mg
Calcium: 56mg

Biscuits and Vegetarian Sausage Gravy

The hubs' family makes an amazing biscuits and gravy--I had it for the first time a few years ago.  So when I came across this recipe, I wondered if it would be as good, especially since it calls for fake sausage.  I don't know why, but I was intrigued by this recipe.  Finally, a night with a vegetarian friend who spent the night gave us an opportunity to try it. 

It was good! Even B said 'you can't tell it's not real sausage'. 

This took a looooong time to reduce but may be because I used skim instead of 1% in the sauce.  I think it took like 30 to 45 minutes to really get it reduced to the right consistency.I definitely need to work on my sausage gravy skills.   I must also admit that it took us a while to find this fake sausage in Wegman's, not being veggie people we aren't as familiar with that section. 

As of today's post, 6 people rated this 5 out of 5.  I would give it a 4.

Recipe by Lorrie Hulston Corvin, Cooking Light, September 2004

Yield: 8 servings


  • 1  (16.3-ounce) can reduced-fat refrigerated biscuit dough
  • 1  tablespoon  vegetable oil
  • 1/2  (14-ounce) package meatless fat-free sausage (such as Lightlife Gimme Lean)
  • 1/4  cup  all-purpose flour
  • 3  cups  1% low-fat milk
  • 1/2  teaspoon  salt
  • 1/4  teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper


Prepare biscuits according to package directions.
Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add sausage; cook 3 minutes or until browned, stirring to crumble. Remove from heat; cool slightly. Crumble sausage into 1/2-inch pieces; return to pan.
Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine flour and 1% low-fat milk, stirring with a whisk until smooth. Add milk mixture, salt, and freshly ground black pepper to pan; bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 3 minutes or until thick. Split the biscuits in half. Place 2 biscuit halves on each of 8 plates; top each serving with about 1/3 cup gravy. Serve immediately.

Nutritional Information

Calories: 268 (29% from fat)
Fat: 8.7g (sat 2.4g,mono 4g,poly 1g)
Protein: 11.4g
Carbohydrate: 36.9g
Fiber: 0.6g
Cholesterol: 4mg
Iron: 1mg
Sodium: 910mg
Calcium: 131mg

Marinated Beef Tenderloin with Carmelized Onion and Mushroom Ragout

I'm baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaack!  Apologies for the long hiatus, things got a little hectic prior to the wedding. But now I'm back, married (weird) and ready to blog!  I'll be adding several posts today, some from before the wedding and a few we made this week.

We made this recipe this week, after searching Wegman's for the right beef (both in quality and price). This calls for 2 pounds of beef tenderloin, which can be quite pricey (we found 3 pound beef tenderloin at Wegman's for $45).  So naturally since we don't want to spend $45 dollars for approximately 2-3 meals, we go for cheaper cuts.  The first time we made this we used flank steak and this time we used 'first cut' strip steak.  If you can find beef in your price range, this is so worth it.

If you look at the ingredients, it looks like it calls for a lot of items. However, most of these I have in my house so it doesn't take a lot to make this.  This requires some prep time beforehand--hours of marinating, so make sure you plan accordingly! I really think the sherry makes the flavors in this dish outstanding, so don't skip on it. Other than choosing a different cut of beef, we make no changes to this recipe. The sauce takes longer to simmer down than as mentioned (which seems to be standard for us with cooking light recipes) and the beef tends to cook more quickly than the allotted time, so be sure to watch it closely with your thermometer.

This is really quite tasty.  The caramelized onion and mushroom sauce is really flavorful and delicious.  However, the marinade is a combination of everything I love, so it's good as well.  This would be great with a fuller bodied red wine and perfect for a cold fall night.

Recipe by David Bonom, Cooking Light, November 2008
Yield: 8 servings (serving size: 3 ounces tenderloin and about 1/3 cup ragout)


  • Beef:
  • 1/4  cup  finely chopped shallots
  • 2  tablespoons  balsamic vinegar
  • 2  tablespoons  low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1  tablespoon  Dijon mustard
  • 1  tablespoon  honey
  • 2  garlic cloves, minced
  • 1  (2-pound) beef tenderloin, trimmed
  • 1/2  teaspoon  salt
  • 1/4  teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper
  • Cooking spray
  • Ragout:
  • 1  teaspoon  olive oil
  • 2  cups  thinly sliced sweet onion
  • 2  garlic cloves, minced
  • 8  cups  sliced mushrooms (about 1 pound)
  • 1  tablespoon  low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1  teaspoon  chopped fresh thyme
  • 1/4  cup  Madeira wine or dry sherry
  • 1/3  cup  fat-free, less-sodium beef broth
  • 1  tablespoon  balsamic vinegar
  • 1/8  teaspoon  salt
  • 1/8  teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper


1. To prepare beef, combine first 6 ingredients in a large zip-top plastic bag. Add beef to bag; seal. Marinate in refrigerator 4 hours, turning occasionally.
2. Preheat oven to 450°.
3. Remove beef from bag; discard marinade. Sprinkle beef with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Place beef on a broiler pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 450° for 35 minutes or until a thermometer registers 135° or until desired degree of doneness. Place tenderloin on a platter; let stand 10 minutes before slicing.
4. To prepare ragout, heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion to pan; cook 15 minutes or until lightly browned, stirring occasionally. Add garlic; cook 1 minute, stirring occasionally. Increase heat to medium-high. Add mushrooms, 1 tablespoon soy sauce, and thyme; sauté 8 minutes. Stir in Madeira; cook 2 minutes or until liquid almost evaporates. Add broth; cook 2 minutes or until liquid almost evaporates. Remove from heat; stir in 1 tablespoon vinegar, 1/8 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper.

Nutritional Information

Calories: 212 (26% from fat)
Fat: 6g (sat 2.1g,mono 2.5g,poly 0.4g)
Protein: 25.1g
Carbohydrate: 12.1g
Fiber: 1.4g
Cholesterol: 52mg
Iron: 2.1mg
Sodium: 502mg
Calcium: 35mg