cucumberSeafood Salad Cucumber Cups
Cucumber cups transform this high-protein seafood salad into finger food. Surimi is made from whitefish such as pollock and is sometimes called “fake crab” or “imitation crab” (although it does not contain actual crab meat). It’s low in fat and cholesterol, and a lean protein. Surimi does have sodium added during processing, so there’s no need for additional salt in this recipe.

Prep time: 30 minutes
Servings: 6 (4 cucumber cups)

2 English (“seedless”) cucumbers, approximately 12 inches each
1/2 pound (8 ounces) packaged surimi
1/2 cup celery, chopped
1/4 cup and 2 tablespoons green onions, chopped
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 cup canola oil mayonnaise

Chop off the ends of each cucumber and discard. Cut each cucumber into 12 equal-sized rounds (approximately 1-inch slices). Using a melon baller, scoop out the center of the cucumber slices, leaving enough cucumber on the bottom for the base of the cucumber cup.

In a food processor, combine surimi, celery, 1/4 cup green onions, garlic powder, black pepper, and mayonnaise. Pulse 10-15 times or until combined.

Using a spoon, scoop seafood salad into cucumber cups. Garnish with remaining 2 tablespoons green onion.

Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Nutrition information per serving: 105 calories (55 calories from fat); 6 g total fat (0 g saturated fat); 14 mg cholesterol; 430 mg sodium; 7 g carbohydrates; 1 g fiber; 1 g sugar; 5 g protein.

No-Bake Cashew Coconut Bites
These no-bake cashew coconut bites are vegan and gluten-free, work with low-carb meal plans, and take just 30 minutes to prepare. Place the balls into mini cupcake papers to keep them from sticking together. If you can’t find dates, try prunes instead.

coconut pastriesPrep time: 30 minutes
Servings: 15 (1 bite)

1/2 cup salted cashews
10 dates, pitted and coarsely chopped
1/2 cup sweetened, shredded coconut, divided
1 1/2 tablespoons coconut oil, divided
1 tablespoon water

Heat skillet over low-medium heat. Add cashews and toast until fragrant, about 3 minutes, stirring or shaking pan periodically.

In a food processor, pulse toasted cashews for 30 seconds or until very finely chopped. Add dates, 1/4 cup shredded coconut, 1 tablespoon coconut oil, and water. Process for 30-60 seconds or until mixture forms and no large chunks of cashews or dates remain. Add additional 1/2 tablespoon of coconut oil (if needed) to maintain moist texture.

Place remaining 1/4 cup shredded coconut in a shallow bowl. Using your hands (it helps to wet them first), roll cashew mixture into 15 individual balls. Roll each ball in remaining shredded coconut and place in mini cupcake paper.

Refrigerate at least 15 minutes before serving.

Nutrition information per serving: 100 calories (65 calories from fat); 5 g total fat (2 1/2 g saturated fat); 0 mg cholesterol; 20 mg sodium; 15 g carbohydrates; 1 g fiber; 12 g sugar; 1 g protein.

TOPS Club Inc.® (Take Off Pounds Sensibly®) is the original weight-loss support and wellness education organization. Founded more than 66 years ago, TOPS is the only nonprofit, noncommercial weight-loss organization of its kind. TOPS promotes successful weight management with a “Real People. Real Weight Loss.®” philosophy that combines support from others at weekly chapter meetings, healthy eating, regular exercise, and wellness information. TOPS has more than 125,000 members – male and female, age seven and older – in thousands of chapters throughout the United States and Canada.

Visitors are welcome to attend their first TOPS meeting free of charge. Membership is affordable at just $32 per year in the U.S. and $36 per year in Canada, plus nominal chapter fees. To find a local chapter, view or call (800) 932-8677 .