Skip to Content

Delicious AND Nutritious… Why I Loved Microwave Cooking

by Caitlin McFeely, Communications Associate, Children's Health Fund

Cara, of the Nutrition Team at the New York Children’s Health Project, shows the class how to cook up a proper family meal. Try these sure-to-please recipies from the team Microwave Chicken Parmesan with Whole Wheat Spaghetti in Marinara Sauce Green Beans Simply Easy Cheesecake.

Yesterday, I visited a shelter in New York City with members of the New York Children’s Health Project (NYCHP)’s nutrition team (Vicky, Cara, and Maya) to take part in a cooking class that teaches moms in the shelter how they can create a healthy and delicious meal, all in the microwave. As I admitted in yesterday’s blog post, I was skeptical that the meal we cooked would really be tasty. Could microwave chicken parmesan really compare with my mom’s chicken parmesan made from scratch? Well, sorry mom, but it really did!

A few reasons why I loved yesterday’s class:

  1. The class is really helpful for the moms in the shelter and they totally appreciate learning how to cook using the microwave. In fact, a few moms had just moved into the shelter and were attending for the first time. You could see they were really paying attention to the recipe and I think were as surprised as me to find out how good the food tasted!
     
  2. Vicky and team do a great job of integrating nutrition tips into the lesson. For example, since we were cooking pasta, one of the important nutrition tips focused on portion size from foods in the grain group. Since 1 serving of cooked pasta = ½ cup and women are only supposed to have 5 servings from the grain food group for the entire day, Vicky explained that it’s important to watch how much pasta you serve yourself and your kids!
     
  3. Cooking in the microwave is quick, easy, and the food tastes good. I was amazed at how tender and tasty the chicken was, and it only took 15 minutes total to prepare. And the cheese cake… INCREDIBLE!

But for me, the absolute best part about the class was that the moms can bring their children. It was adorable to see the 3-year olds helping mix the pasta sauce or the batter for the cheesecake. I hope that by participating and learning how to cook a meal that is delicious and nutritious from such an early age, these kids will be set on a healthy track throughout their childhood.

Vicky and team are in the process of working on a cookbook of microwave recipes that they can share with other shelters across New York City.

But as a little treat, Vicky has agreed to share our recipe from yesterday. Try it out… I know you won’t be disappointed!

Thanks to the NYCHP team and the moms for letting me join in on class yesterday!