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Rich and creamy, but without all of the sugar and fat, these pudding cups featuring Voskos® Greek Yogurt are the perfect blend of chocolate & cherries!

Voskos Greek Yogurt Cherry Chocolate “Pudding Cups”

Ingredients

3 cups Voskos® Nonfat Plain Greek Yogurt

28 fresh or frozen dark cherries

4 tbs Torani® sugar-free Dark Cherry syrup

4 tbs Torani sugar-free Chocolate syrup

4 tsp sugar-free, fat-free vanilla pudding mix

Preparation

1. Defrost and chop cherries to a small dice.

2. Combine all ingredients in a non-reactive mixing bowl and blend until well-mixed.

3. Spoon into four small resealable plastic food storage containers.

4. Refrigerate Voskos Greek Yogurt Cherry Chocolate “Pudding” Cups after mixing.

Makes 4 – 3/4 Cup Servings

*Recipe and image courtesy of Voskos®.*

Voskos Greek Yogurt is offering a printable $0.75 off coupon on their website, perfect for nutritious snacking in the New Year! Print the coupon here.

*Image courtesy of Voskos. This is not a paid advertorial. Please see disclosure.*

Snack Smarter in the New Year!

It is that time of the year again when we start to think of ways to improve ourselves in the upcoming year! For most, eating healthier and becoming more fit are high on the list of resolutions. Below are 5 snack-tastic ideas for tasty & nutritious foods to reach for that won’t induce guilt (or pack on the pounds!) in 2011. As always – everything in moderation is a good mantra to live by!

Voskos YoGreek Yogurt

Snack happy with YoGreek! Packaged conveniently, this healthy & delicious new snack from Voskos is just plain fun – one side contains crunchy granola that tips right into the yogurt side for easy snacking, especially on the go! “Mom” is wild about YoGreek, especially the strawberry flavor. Decadent, creamy, and brimming with health benefits, such as calcium, fiber, protein, and live probiotics – who needs ice cream? www.voskos.com

Panda Licorice

Craving something sweet yet natural? Reach for Panda Licorice! Made with fruit puree, this all-natural snack has no artificial colors, artificial flavors, preservatives, hydrogenated fats or salt. In addition, Panda is suitable for vegetarian, vegan, Kosher and Halal diets. Panda Licorice comes in 3 juicy, delicious flavors: Original Black, Raspberry and Cherry! All Panda Licorice come in boxes, re-sealable bags and 100 calorie bars. www.pandalicorice.com

Newman’s Own Organics Chocolate Bars

Stop – that chocolate cake may look tempting, but conquer your lust for chocolate with a square or two of Newman’s Own Organics Chocolate Bars. Rich, satisfying, and made with organic ingredients, a small square savored is sure to please! Plus, the dark chocolate bars pack an additional antioxidant punch! The bars are available in Dark Chocolate, Super Dark Chocolate, Mocha Milk Chocolate, Milk Chocolate, Espresso Dark Chocolate, and Orange Dark Chocolate. www.newmansownorganics.com

Nature’s Path Granola Bars

100% USDA Certified Organic – Nature’s Path Granola Bars make a convenient snack at anytime of the day, whether you need a quick yet healthy bite for breakfast as you dash out the door, or an afternoon pick-me-up that won’t break the caloric bank! The best part? Nature’s Path Granola Bars don’t contain artificial preservatives, additives, genetically modified organism (GMOs) or synthetic pesticides, but they are full of great tasting ingredients such as fruit, nuts and real organic yogurt. Plus, they are a great source of whole grains and omega-3’s.

Nature’s Path Granola Bars are available in 8 delicious flavors:

Pumpkin-n-Spice – mineral-rich roasted pumpkin seeds and Omega-3 rich flaxseeds with a dash of cinnamon.

Mmmaple Pecan – made with organic maple syrup, crunchy pecans and a drizzle of sweet, creamy icing.

Berry Strawberry – a mix of organic strawberries and raspberries, topped off with just the right amount of real, creamy yogurt.

Lotta Apricotta – chock full of dried apricots, roasted almonds and drizzled with real yogurt icing.

Sunny Hemp – a blend of hempseed, flaxseed and sunflower seeds with juicy raisins.

Peanut Buddy – peanut butter and whole roasted peanuts for a chewy bar with crunch.

Peanut Choco – two of our favorite flavors, crunchy peanuts drizzled with dark chocolate.

Chococonut – the perfect combination of dark chocolate chips and a hint of sweet, buttery, nutty coconut.

The bars are available nationwide at Whole Foods, or you can order them online at www.naturespath.com.

Resveratrol WineTime Chocolate Raspberry Bar

Chocolate? Check! Antioxidants? Check! Resveratrol? Check! Fruit? Check! Who says you can’t have it all? WineTime has just introduced their newest bar – Chocolate Raspberry! Brimming with flavor and all manner of good things – this is the bar to reach for when snacking that truly does it all. As they say, indulge in longevity…. www.winetimebar.com

*Companies generously provided samples and images for this article.*

Save on nature’s perfect superfood! Voskos Greek Yogurt offers a printable $0.75 off coupon on their website, just in time for healthy holiday snacking! You can print the coupon here.

*Image courtesy of Voskos. This is not a paid advertorial. Please see disclosure.*

Scare the guilt away with this light, low-fat chocolate & vanilla pie made with Voskos Greek Yogurt. Prep time is only 5 minutes – it can be made the day ahead for any upcoming Halloween party!

Voskos Low-Fat Greek Yogurt Pie
Servings: 8 Servings

Ingredients
1 Organic Chocolate Graham Crust (Oreo if you must)
1 8 ounce Organic Whipped Topping
2 8 ounce Voskos Greek Yogurt Non-Fat Vanilla Bean yogurt (Any Voskos Flavor or Plain will work, too!)
1/2 – 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
1 Dagoba Organic Dark Chocolate (59%) Bar optional for topping.

Preparation
Gently combine whipped topping and yogurt in a large bowl until well blended. Do not use a mixer. Mix by hand only until well blended.

Pour into graham cracker crust. Grate chocolate shavings on top for presentation. Break some into chunks on top.

Place in refrigerator (uncovered) at least two hours or until set. 24 hours is best.

Total Time (median): 2 Hours Active Time: 5 minutes

*Recipe and image courtesy of Ward W. Bond, Ph.D.

Websites: www.drwardbond.com and www.nutritional-living.com.*

Move over ice cream, there’s a new, healthier dessert option to enjoy! Voskos Greek Yogurt offers a delectable treat for those who want to enjoy something sweet after their meal, or who desire a light, healthy snack at anytime. Thick, creamy, & rich – Voskos Greek Yogurt is high in protein, gluten-free, and contains absolutely no rBST, rBGH or GMO! With active, live probiotic cultures, this delectable yogurt helps to maintain the healthy flora in the gut that aid digestion. To learn more about the health benefits of Voskos Greek Yogurt, please click here.

Voskos Greek Yogurt can be enjoyed alone, used in cooking, drizzled with honey, or topped with everything from fresh berries or other fruits, granola, cereal, and wheat germ. Offered in both organic and all-natural varieties as well as non-fat, low-fat and original. Tasty flavors include: Plain, Greek Honey, Wild Blueberry, Honey Vanilla Bean, Exotic Fig, and Wild Strawberry.

To locate retailers near you, or to purchase online, please visit Voskos.com.

*Company generously provided samples and images for this review.*

Voskos Greek Yogurt has outlined the reasons why yogurt has been touted as a “superfood” – this versatile food can be eaten so many different ways and provides an enormous amount of health benefits. Go ahead – break out your favorite flavor and top it with fruit, granola, or even cereal! YUM!

Reasons Why Yogurt is a Top Health Food

1. Yogurt may contribute to steady weight loss: More and more studies are suggesting that a daily consumption of low-fat yogurt may help to burn fat and contribute to steady weight loss.

2. Greek Yogurt is an excellent source of protein: Voskos Greek Yogurt contains 24g of protein and is high in potassium, which some find helpful in elevating mood.

3. Greek yogurt provides a valuable source of calcium: An 8-ounce serving of most yogurts provides 450 mg. of calcium, one-half of a child’s RDA and 30 to 40 percent of the adult RDA for calcium. Because the live and active cultures in yogurt increase the absorption of calcium, an 8-ounce serving of yogurt gets more calcium into the body than the same volume of milk.

4. A Chaser for Antibiotics: It’s good to eat yogurt with live and active probiotic cultures while taking antibiotics. The yogurt will minimize the effects of the antibiotic on the friendly bacteria in the intestines. Antibiotics kill not only harmful bacteria; they also kill the healthy ones in the intestines. The live bacterial cultures in yogurt can help replenish the intestines with helpful bacteria before the harmful ones take over. A 1999 study reported in Pediatrics showed that lactobacillus organisms can reduce antibiotic-associated diarrhea.

5. Yogurt is easier for some people to digest than milk: If you’re lactose intolerant, you should try Voskos Greek Yogurt as it is made with active and live probiotic cultures, which convert lactose to lactic acid, making it more easily digestible.

6. Yogurt contributes to colon health: There’s a medical truism that states: “You’re only as healthy as your colon.” When eating yogurt, you’re also taking care for your colon. Yogurt with live and active probiotic cultures contains lactobacteria, intestine-friendly bacterial cultures such as acidophilus that foster a healthy colon, and may lower the risk of colon cancer.

7. Eating yogurt may improve the bioavailability of other nutrients: Eating cultured yogurts (those with live and active probiotic cultures) may increase the absorption of calcium and B-vitamins. The lactic acid in these yogurts aid in the digestion of the milk calcium, making it easier to absorb.

8. Yogurt is good for the young and the elderly: Yogurt is a valuable health food for all but can be particularly beneficial for young children and elderly persons. For children, it provides a balanced source of protein, fats, carbohydrates, and minerals in a texture that kids love. For senior citizens, who usually have more sensitive colons or whose intestines have less lactase, yogurt is also a valuable food. Elderly intestines may show declining levels of bifidus bacteria, which may be counter-balanced by eating yogurts with live and active probiotic cultures such as Voskos Greek Yogurt.

9. Yogurt can boost immunity: Researchers who studied 68 people who ate two cups of live-culture yogurt daily for three months found that these persons produced higher levels of immunity boosting interferon. The bacterial cultures in yogurt have also been shown to stimulate infection-fighting white cells in the bloodstream.

10. Yogurt may aid healing after intestinal infections: Some viral and allergic gastrointestinal disorders injure the lining of the intestines, especially the cells that produce lactase. This results in temporary lactose malabsorption problems. This is why children often cannot tolerate milk for a month or two after an intestinal infection. Yogurt, however, because it contains less lactose and more lactase, is usually well-tolerated by healing intestines and is a popular “healing food” for diarrhea. Many pediatricians recommend yogurt for children suffering from various forms of indigestion. Research shows that children recover faster from diarrhea when eating yogurt.

11. Yogurt can decrease yeast infections: Research has shown that eating eight ounces of yogurt that contains live and active cultures daily reduces the amount of yeast colonies in the vagina and decreases the incidence of vaginal yeast infections.

12. Yogurt may lower cholesterol: There are a few studies that have shown that yogurt may reduce the blood cholesterol. This may be because the live cultures in yogurt can assimilate the cholesterol or because yogurt binds bile acids, (which has also been shown to lower cholesterol), or both.

13. Yogurt is a “grow food.”: Two nutritional properties of yogurt may help children with intestinal absorption problems grow: the easier digestibility of the proteins and the fact that the lactic acid in yogurt increases the absorption of minerals. And even most picky-eaters will eat yogurt in dips and smoothies and as a topping.

*Tips and image provides by Voskos Greek Yogurt.*

For a healthy, gluten-free recipe, check out this creamy Roasted Red Pepper Dip that features Voskos Greek Yogurt. Makes a great alternative to calorie-laden ranch dips!

Roasted Red Pepper Dip

Ingredients

2 cloves fresh garlic

3 7-oz jars roasted red peppers

8 oz Voskos Greek Yogurt (Plain, Non-Fat)

1 1/2 teaspoons cumin

1/2 cup chopped tomato

1/4 cup chopped green onions

2 cucumbers, sliced

2 green peppers, sliced

2 packages mini cut and peeled carrots

Preparation

Combine garlic, peppers and pepper juice in a food processor and blend until smooth. Blend in yogurt and cumin. Transfer to a bowl and add tomato, and onions. Season with salt and pepper.

Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours. Serve with cut vegetables.

*Image and recipe courtesy of Voskos Greek Yogurt.*