Menu planner: Mediterranean beef pot roast

Thinking ahead to your next few meals? Here are some main dishes and sides to try.

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Mediterranean beef pot roast.

Mediterranean beef pot roast.

Cattlemen’s Beef Board

Mediterranean beef pot roast

Makes 6 servings

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: about 3 hours


1 boneless beef shoulder roast (2 1/2 to 3 pounds)

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 1/2 cups water

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

2 small onions, halved and sliced

4 medium shallots, sliced

1/4 cup chopped dates

1/2 teaspoon coarse salt

1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon pepper

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Lightly coat roast with flour. Heat oil in Dutch oven on medium. Brown roast evenly; remove from Dutch oven. Add water and vinegar to Dutch oven; cook and stir until brown bits attached to pan are dissolved. Return roast. Add onions, shallots, dates, salt and pepper; bring to a boil. Cover tightly and cook in oven 2 1/4 to 3 1/4 hours or until roast is fork-tender. Remove roast; keep warm. Cook liquid and vegetables over medium-high heat to desired consistency. Carve roast. Serve with sauce.

Per serving: 316 calories, 36 grams protein, 13 grams fat (37% calories from fat), 3.5 grams saturated fat, 14 grams carbohydrate, 108 milligrams cholesterol, 232 milligrams sodium, 1 gram fiber.

Carb count: 1.

Monster burgers

Makes 8 sandwiches

Preparation time: 25 minutes

Cooking time: 10 to 12 minutes


1 1/2 pounds 93% to 95% lean ground beef

8 whole-grain burger buns

8 slices (3/4 ounce each) reduced-fat American cheese

8 thin slices deli ham

16 slices dill pickle


Form beef into 8 thin patties. Place on broiler pan. Broil patties along with bun tops 3 to 4 inches from heat 5 to 6 minutes per side or until burgers are no longer pink and buns are lightly browned. To assemble: Place bottom halves of buns on serving platter. Place 1 cooked patty on each bun bottom. Cut each cheese slice in half in a zigzag pattern to look like teeth. Place half of cheese slice on burger, with “teeth” hanging off 1 side of patty. Loosely fold ham into tongue shape; place on top of “teeth.” Place remaining cheese “teeth” on top of “tongue.” Top with top halves of buns. Place 2 pickle slices on top for eyes. Dot “eyes” with ketchup for pupils.

Per serving: 315 calories, 30 grams protein, 11 grams fat (32% calories from fat), 5.1 grams saturated fat, 24 grams carbohydrate, 71 milligrams cholesterol, 978 milligrams sodium, 3 grams fiber.

Carb count: 1.5.

Roasted shrimp with spaghetti

Makes 4 servings

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 20 minutes, plus pasta


8 ounces whole-wheat spaghetti

3 teaspoons olive oil, divided

1 pint grape tomatoes

1/8 teaspoon coarse salt

1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1 (15- to 19-ounce) can reduced-sodium cannellini beans, rinsed

1 pound uncooked medium shrimp, peeled and deveined

1 (5- to 6-ounce) package fresh baby spinach

2 ounces crumbled Greek feta cheese

1/4 cup packed chopped fresh dill, plus more for garnish

Heat oven to 450 degrees. Cook spaghetti according to directions; reserve 1/4 cup cooking water. Drain, return pasta to pot. Line a large rimmed baking pan with nonstick foil. In pan, combine 2 teaspoons oil, tomatoes, salt and pepper. Roast 15 minutes or until tomatoes begin to collapse. In medium bowl, toss beans, shrimp and remaining oil. Add to tomato mixture; stir to combine. Spread in a single layer and roast 5 minutes more or until shrimp are opaque throughout. Add spinach to cooked spaghetti in pot (add reserved water if pasta sticks together); toss to wilt spinach. Stir in shrimp mixture, feta and dill. Transfer to serving bowl; garnish with dill sprigs.

Per serving: 462 calories, 32 grams protein, 11 grams fat (20% calories from fat), 3 grams saturated fat, 63 grams carbohydrate, 156 milligrams cholesterol, 519 milligrams sodium, 11 grams fiber.

Carb count: 4.

Vegetable beef soup

Dice the meat and vegetables into bite-size pieces; combine in large pot with enough lower-sodium beef broth to cover, 1 (14.5-ounce) can no-salt-added diced tomatoes and 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme. Thin with water or broth as desired. Heat soup, ladle into bowls and top with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.

Pepper cheese omelet

Cook 2 strips bacon; crumble and set aside. Heat 2 teaspoons canola oil in a large, nonstick skillet. Add 2 cups refrigerated (or frozen and thawed) O’Brien potatoes (about half of a 20-ounce package); pat flat into skillet. Cook on low heat, uncovered, turning once, about 7 minutes or until crisp and brown. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, beat together 3 whole eggs, 3 egg whites, 1/4 cup 1% milk, 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt and a dash of pepper. Pour over potatoes in skillet. Top with 1 cup shredded 50% light sharp cheddar cheese and crumbled bacon. Cook covered 5 to 7 minutes or until egg mixture is set. Loosen omelet from skillet; fold in half. Turn out of skillet onto a serving platter. Cut into wedges to serve.

Tuna melts

Spoon deli tuna salad onto whole-grain English muffins. Top tuna with sliced tomatoes and 50% light cheddar cheese. Broil until hot and cheese is melted. Serve with sweet red pepper soup.

7-layer tortilla pie

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Mash 2 (15-ounce) cans rinsed reduced-sodium pinto beans with a fork. Stir in 3/4 cup picante sauce and 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder until blended. In another bowl, mix another 1/4 cup picante sauce, 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, 1 (15-ounce) can rinsed reduced-sodium black beans and 1/2 cup chopped tomatoes. Place 1 (of 7 total) — 8-inch flour tortilla on a baking sheet. Spread 3/4 cup pinto bean mixture over tortilla to within 1/2 inch of the edge. Top with 1/4 cup (of 2 cups total) shredded 50% light cheddar cheese. Place another tortilla on top and spread with 3/4 cup black bean mixture and 1/4 cup cheese. Repeat layers 2 more times. Top with last tortilla and the remaining pinto bean mixture. Cover with nonstick foil. Bake 40 minutes or until the filling is hot. Uncover; top with remaining cheese. Cut the pie into wedges and serve with additional picante sauce and cilantro on the side.

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