Blogger Spotlight: Anne-Marie Nichols, of This Mama Cooks! On a Diet

Join Food Network's Healthy Eats in discovering the best healthy bloggers around the web. Today we're talking to Anne-Marie Nichols of This Mama Cooks! On a Diet.
Anne-Marie Nichols started out blogging in 2004 as a way to share her favorite family recipes. Three years later, Nichols—and her blog—went on a diet. This Mama Cooks! On a Diet is her way of sharing the wholesome recipes and healthy lifestyle tips that fuel her and her family. Over the years, she's mastered finding easy alternatives, whether it's gluten free, veggie heavy or dairy free. For a family diet revamp, Anne-Marie Nichols is your mama.
How did This Mama Cooks! On a Diet get started?

I started posting Thanksgiving recipes on my mom blog. Since I love cooking at Thanksgiving, it made sense to start a new blog just to document what I planned to cook that year. From there This Mama Cooks! morphed into a diet blog and then a healthy food and lifestyle blog.

What’s the best tip you can give to busy people looking to get healthy?

Small changes! If you do it all at once, you'll be overwhelmed and won't be successful in changing your life for the better.

Which This Mama Cooks! On a Diet recipe do you recommend for someone looking to please everyone in the family?

Chili made in a slow cooker. My favorite is Healthy Slow Cooker Pumpkin and Bean Chili (pictured above). You can quickly put it together before leaving for work. It’s delicious. And the kids won’t notice that you snuck in healthy vegetables and high fiber beans.

What’s your favorite wholesome ingredient to bring into your dishes?

Veggies, veggies, veggies! You can always sneak some extras in to soup, chili or stew – canned diced tomatoes are perfect for this. I also love adding frozen pre-sliced okra or green tomatoes to curry dishes.

How do you slim down your baking recipes in particular? Do you have a secret weapon?

I have two! I like using Stevia instead of sugar. I’m also a big believer in baking with buttery spreads instead of regular butter, which helps lower the saturated fat content.

What do you want readers to gain from This Mama Cooks! On a Diet?

Some recipes and lifestyle tips to help make their lives easier, less complicated, and more healthy.

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