Healthier app options at your next holiday party


Instead of waiting for the New Year, kickstart your healthier eating goals at your next holiday party!

Dietitian Kim Galeaz is introducing some appetizers with perks including lean pork tenderloin and plenty of fruits and vegetables.

Cuban Pork Tenderloin Sliders


  • 2 pork tenderloins (about 2 1/3 to 2 ½ pounds total), trimmed
  • ½ cup orange juice
  • ½ cup grapefruit juice
  • 4 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 4 very finely minced garlic cloves
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper

Ingredients for slider assembly:

  • Whole wheat or white slider buns
  • Yellow mustard
  • Cubano pork tenderloin, sliced
  • Ham deli-meat slices
  • Swiss cheese slices
  • Dill pickles

Mix orange juice, grapefruit juice, cilantro, cumin, oregano, garlic, salt and red pepper in a freezer gallon-size zip-top plastic bag. Add both pork tenderloins, close, shake and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes and up to 4 hours. When time to cook, heat oven to 425⁰F. Place tenderloins on rimmed baking sheet; drain briefly from marinade. Discard marinade. Cook pork until instant-read thermometer in thickest part/center of pork reads 145⁰F, about 20 to 30 minutes depending on your tenderloin size. Transfer to cutting board and let rest at least 3 minutes before cutting into thick slices for slider-size buns.

To make sliders, spread a little mustard on both sides of bun, then arrange pork tenderloin slice, ham slice, cheese slice, and dill pickles over bottom bun. Place top bun on each slider and serve immediately. Cooked pork must stay food safe – do not leave sliders out at room temperature longer than 2 hours. Refrigerate any leftovers. Makes approximately 18 to 22 sliders.

NOTE: Cuban Pork Tenderloin Recipe and Photo courtesy of, your Indiana Pork Farmers and National Pork Board. Adaptations for pork and slider recipe by culinary registered dietitian nutritionist, Kim Galeaz, RDN LD

Caprese Salad Skewers with Balsamic Drizzle


  • 24 grape tomatoes, cut in half* (use larger sized grape tomatoes)
  • 24 fresh mini mozzarella balls, patted dry (cherry tomato-size, also known as ciliegine)
  • 48 – 72 baby spinach leaves, stems trimmed
  • 24 whole basil leaves

Ingredients for balsamic drizzle:

  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2/3 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2/3 cup fresh basil, thinly sliced
  • Garnish: additional basil leaves
  • 24 skewers, about 5-6 inches long

On skewer, thread one tomato half, mozzarella ball, two or three spinach leaves, one basil leaf and other tomato half. Arrange all prepared skewers on serving platter/dish if serving immediately or refrigerate in tightly covered container. In a medium bowl, whisk together olive, vinegar, salt and pepper and basil thinly sliced. Set aside or refrigerate in tightly covered container. When ready to serve kabobs, drizzle dressing over kabobs liberally. Garnish with additional thinly sliced basil if desired. Place remaining dressing in small bowl and serve with kabobs. Makes 24 skewers.

NOTE: Recipe by culinary registered dietitian nutritionist, Kim Galeaz, RDN LD

Asian Spiced Pork Wonton Appetizers


  • 24 to 36 wonton wrappers
  • Sweet Thai chili sauce (ingredients below)
  • 1 ½ teaspoons sesame oil
  • 1.25 pounds lean ground pork
  • 2 large garlic cloves, very finely minced
  • 2 teaspoons very finely minced fresh ginger
  • ½ cup finely chopped water chestnuts
  • ½ cup finely chopped green onion (Plus more for garnish)

Ingredients for Sweet Thai chili sauce:

  • 1 ½ tablespoons unseasoned rice wine vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons less sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons ground fresh chili paste (sambal oelek)
  • 1 – 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 1 ½ teaspoons sesame oil
  • ½ – ¾ teaspoon Chinese five spice powder

Heat oven to 375⁰F. Trim pointed edge off every corner of wonton wrap with a kitchen scissors or knife. Very carefully, place one wrapper in cup of mini muffin tin and arrange sides so it forms a complete “cup.” It’s okay for sides to overlap slightly. Bake 8 – 9 minutes until lightly browned (slightly more if you want them darker brown and even crispier).

In a small bowl, whisk sauce ingredients together until blended. Set aside. In a large skillet over medium heat, add oil and heat until hot. Add ground pork and cook, breaking up into crumbles, until partially done. Add minced garlic, minced ginger and sauce mixture, and cook until ground pork is completely done (160⁰F). Stir in water chestnuts and green onions. Taste and adjust seasonings as desired.

Fill each baked wonton cup with pork mixture. You should get at least 24 appetizers, maybe even 36, depending on how you fill them. Garnish with additional finely chopped green onion and serve immediately with sweet Thai chili sauce. Ground pork appetizers must be served within 2 hours (food safety) if served at room temperature. Refrigerate leftovers in a tightly covered container. Makes 24 to 36 appetizers.

NOTE: Recipe by culinary registered dietitian nutritionist, Kim Galeaz, RDN LD

Bacon Wrapped Dates with Cheese & Almonds


  • 18 Medjool dates
  • 6 to 8 ounces favorite cheese (goat, feta, Gouda, Havarti, sharp cheddar, Butterkase, Asiago are Kim’s favorites)
  • 36 roasted, salted almonds (or any favorite nut like walnuts or pecans)
  • 9 thick-cut slices bacon, cut in half

Preheat oven to 400⁰F. Slice dates length-wise to remove pit and make cavity for cheese. Spread/fill with a rectangular chunk (cut slightly higher and longer than the size of the date) of your favorite hard cheese or a couple teaspoons of goat cheese. Place two almonds in cheese area, pressing firmly. Wrap half slice of bacon around date and secure with toothpick. Place on large rimmed baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Bake 10 minutes, then turn and bake additional 5 to 10 minutes, until bacon is desired crispness. Cool a couple minutes then transfer to serving platter. Serve warm. (Use within two hours of cooking when serving immediately after cooking.) Otherwise, refrigerate in tightly covered container, and reheat in warm oven or microwave before serving. Makes 18 appetizers.

NOTE: Recipe by culinary registered dietitian nutritionist, Kim Galeaz, RDN LD

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