Nutrition for Newlyweds

November 8th, 2013

Whether you’re a newlywed or a simply fun-loving couple who love food here are few ideas to help you stay happy and healthy, together.

Cook Together

If you’re looking to spend quality time with your lover, look no further than your kitchen! Cooking together is an awesome way to bond all the while sharing and exploring the world of food. Getting in the habit of cooking and eating meals at home will set the stage for a healthy family meal routine in the future. Check out Chapters for a collection of Newlywed Cookbooks. Who knew such a thing existed? I speak from experience when saying “Two in the Kitchen: A Cookbook for Newlyweds” is a lovely edition to my collection.

2. Enlist Helpers

Menu planners, slow-cookers, freezer dishes and rice cookers are kitchen essentials for busy people. My cooking philosophy is: “Cook once, Eat twice.” When I make rice I make enough to freeze for a later-in-the-week dish or when I make a one-pot meal, like lasagna, I always make two batches so I can freeze one for another day. Another great helper is If you’re a beginner cook this is the place to visit.

3. Plate Your Own

One of my first food memories with my husband Alex is the first breakfast he made for me. A true powerlifters breakfast with perogies and hashbrowns piled high. I was grateful, but shocked by the amount of food before me. I did my best to eat what I could, trying to be polite, but that was a one time thing, lol. Since that morning I quietly instituted a plate your own meal “policy.” This way no food is wasted and no one eats more than they want.

4. Take Turns Packing Lunches

Packing lunches can be a pain, no doubt. So, share the responsibility. I love opening my lunchbox to find a surprise or two from time to time. Not knowing what’s in there is half the excitement. By taking turns packing lunches your taking that extra stock in your partners health and an active role in nurturing their well-being and healthy living goals.

5. Be Adventurous

Try new things. Take advantage of your differences and aim to try a new food or recipe every week or two. Perhaps even start a cooking club with friends or neighbours. Variety is one of the keys to a healthy diet so spice it up with foods of various cultures and recipes from around the world. Who know you may fall in love with Malaysian cuisine or an amazing new Thai dish. The world, and your kitchen is your oyster.

Feature Recipe

Every family has recipes that have been passed down – that must have Christmas dinner side dish or go-to dessert. My Grandmother taught me that food is about a lot more than nourishment – it’s about love. I thought I’d share a new take on a family favourite. Alex’s Dad side of the family is Ukrainian and they love perogies, sausage and all the fixings. We’ve taken the inspiration of the perogy dinner and transformed it into protein-rich lasagna and that’s sure to warm you up this fall.

Perogy Lasagna


  • 9 whole-grain lasagna noodles, cooked or oven ready
  • 1 ½ cups (375 mL) mashed potato
  • 1 ½ cups (375 mL) pinto beans, pureed
  • 1 cup (250 mL) low-fat sharp cheddar cheese, grated
  • 2 cups (500 mL) 1% MF cottage cheese
  • ¼ cup (60 mL) green onion, chopped
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • ½ tsp (2 mL) salt
  • ½ tsp (2 mL) pepper
  • 4 cups (1 L) fresh baby spinach
  • 1 ½ cups 375 mL onion, diced
  • 1 Tbsp (30 mL) canola oil


  1. Preheat oven to 350F (180C).
  2. Coat a 9 x 13 baking dish with a non-stick vegetable spray.
  3. In a bowl, combine potatoes, bean puree and Cheddar cheese.
  4. In separate bowl, combine cottage cheese, green onion, egg, salt and pepper. Add baby spinach and mix well.
  5. Place lasagna noodles on the bottom of the baking dish. Spread bean mixture over first layer of noodles and cover with next layer of noodles. Spread cottage cheese mixture over 2nd layer of noodles. Cover with the last of the noodles.
  6. In a skillet, sauté onion in margarine until translucent. Remove from heat and spread over final layer of noodles.
  7. Cover with foil and bake on middle oven rack for 60 minutes.
  8. Remove from oven and let stand for 10 min, covered, before serving. Serve with a side salad of dark greens and your favorite vinaigrette. Enjoy!


  • To prepare pinto bean puree, rinse and drain a 19-ounce can of beans. In food processor, add ¼ cup hot water, and puree until the mixture is very smooth, adding more water in small amounts to reach desired consistency. Refrigerate or freeze unused bean puree for your next batch.
  • If you’d like to add meat, I suggest ground turkey. This can be easily sprinkled in between layers for added protein, texture and spice.
  • Garnish with a dollop of fat-free Greek yogurt instead of sour cream.
  • Try this recipe in your slow-cooker. Prepare all ingredients, same as above; however, layer in crock pot instead of oven dish. Cook on low for 4-6 hours.

Recipe #2 – Cauliflower Crust Pizza