Growing Up Fit! by: Robin High & Monica Chapman


With the cost of food products and day to day living going up, it is important that we find ways to get the most out of trips to the grocery store and to local Farmers Markets. 

Cooking more at home is a great start to trimming extra food expenses and eating healthier.

    • Ex: Instead of fried chicken and French fries, you can enjoy oven baked chicken, a baked potato, and string beans that will likely feed a family of four for the price of two in a fast food restaurant.
    • Never shop hungry—you are more likely to choose higher calorie “impulse” items.
  • Look for coupons and sale ads from your local newspaper and on food products
    • Some stores offer price competition, so if your preferred store’s prices are more expensive, they may honor the sale price of another store.
  • Use less convenience items—they are typically more expensive because of their packaging
    • Ex: Instead of buying chicken drummettes or tenders, look for whole chicken wings or chicken breasts and cut them yourself.  Look for sales where you get 2 for 1 bargains.
    • Instead of buying fruit cup products, buy the fresh or canned product and store them in small reusable plastic containers.  Look for fruits in their own juice.



The EFNEP program which stands for Expanded Food and Nutrition Education program is a program for limited resource families that is offered through the Pitt County Cooperative Extension.

    • Office hours are Monday-Friday 8am-5pm, but classes are sometimes taught after office hours.
    • Program teaches about making smarter food choices, cooking more at home, and shopping on a budget.  For more information, call 902-1719.


Featured Recipe: Tuna Burgers –This is one of the recipes that the EFNEP program uses and has been very popular.


Other Tips:

o    Use tuna in water only!

o    Use low fat of reduced fat shredded cheese. 

o    Use fat free ranch dressing

o    Wrap Tuna Burger in a favorite green leaf like Romaine lettuce!

o    Add flaxseed to the bread crumbs to get in more fiber.


Ingredients: (Makes 6 patties)— You can always make more for a family meal~

1(12-ounce) can tuna 

1-1/4 cups bread crumbs, divided 

1cup (4 ounces) cheddar cheese, shredded 

1egg, lightly beaten 

1/2 cup non-fat ranch salad dressing 

1/4 cup finely chopped onion 

Non-stick cooking spray 



1. Drain tuna, separate into flakes using a fork. 

2. In a medium bowl, combine tuna, 3/4 cup bread crumbs, cheese, egg,

salad dressing, and onion. 

3. Form six patties; coat each side with remaining 1/2 cup bread crumbs. 

4. Spray non-stick skillet with cooking spray; heat to medium heat. 

5. Cook patties 3-5 minutes on each side until golden brown 


Nutrition: 280 calories; Total Fat 9g; Saturated Fat 4.5 g ; Protein 23 g; Total Carbohydrate24 g ; Dietary Fiber <1 g; Sodium 750 mg;


Shop at the Farmers Market: Featured Recipe: Mexican Coleslaw—Thanks to the Farmers Market Nutrition Education Program who will be with us in July.


-Goes a long way!

-Can use as a side or on the sandwich itself.

-There are many varieties of cabbage that you can choose from!



6 c. very thinly sliced green cabbage- (about ½ head)

1 ½ c. peeled and grated carrots-(2-3 medium)

1/3 c. chopped cilantro

¼ c. rice vinegar

1 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil

¼ tsp. salt



1.     Place cabbage and carrots in a colander.  Rinse thoroughly with cold water to crisp. 

2.     Let drain for 5 minutes.

3.     Whisk cilantro, vinegar, oil and salt in a large bowl.

4.     Add cabbage and carrots.  Toss well to coat.


Nutrition Information:  Calories 27; Total Fat 0.7 grams; Sodium 97 milligrams; Total Carbohydrates 5.4 grams; Dietary Fiber 1.9 grams


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