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Refrigerator Look Book: Ellie Krieger

Ellie Krieger
(Photo: Ellie Krieger)

“We tend to frame things as either delicious or healthy. There’s a binge or diet mentality,” says celebrity nutritionist Ellie Krieger, RD, host of the Food Network’s Healthy Appetite. “My whole thing is finding that sweet spot where you can have both.” And she doesn’t want you to spend your whole night looking for it, either.

Krieger’s new book, Weeknight Wonders, only includes healthy meals that can be on the table in 30 minutes or less. “For real 30 minutes or less, not, like, if-you-have-a-sous-chef, 30 minutes or less,” she says. “I literally timed every recipe myself, and that includes boiling, chopping…everything.”

So what’s the key to achieving delicious, healthy success before The Mindy Project’s over? “I streamlined the recipes, so there’s not a lot of prep work, and I really help you manage the actual process,” she says. Meaning she won’t say you need “one onion, diced,” she’ll tell you when to chop the onion, while the oil’s heating.

Need more direction? Here’s how the busy nutritionist and personality manages her own kitchen at home on New York’s Upper West Side.

Alright, why the two different kinds of milk? I use nonfat milk for cereal and in recipes and cooking. I like to have some whole milk in coffee, and I get that brand from the farmer’s market. I also use the nonfat to make smoothies—I actually trained my daughter to make me smoothies. The basic formula I taught her is frozen bananas and then another frozen fruit like mango and strawberries and cover with milk and add a handful of almonds, or I might put a scoop of almond butter in there.

ElliefridgeTeach them smoothie skills young! You’ve got lemons front and center. Do you use them for cooking a lot? I do, and right now it’s citrus season so I have a lot. I really love Cara Cara oranges. They’re pink inside, and they’re juicy and just the right sweet-tart balance for me. I just love them all winter long; I devour them. I also like to keep fruit on hand for my daughter for an after-school snack. Like the grapes—they’re pre-washed and easy to reach.

Good strategy. Is the yogurt a go-to breakfast item? Actually I’m addicted to those Bites as a little snack. They’re just 100 calories. I always also have a big tub of plain Greek yogurt in there. I’ll eat it with toasted nuts, fruit, and some honey for a meal.

Any other foods you always have on hand? Eggs are obvious, perhaps, but many people don’t think of them as a dinner food. They’re such an economical, quick-cooking, satisfying protein, and I think people should take advantage of them more at dinnertime. I always have leftovers because I love to make extra whenever I’m cooking. You see the chocolate bar—I always have some good quality dark chocolate in my fridge. Even just a few bites gives me the sweet satisfaction and then I move on. I also eat some kind of nuts every single day, and I would recommend other people do that also.

And is that bubbly hiding towards the back of the top shelf? I always have champagne or sparkling wine like Prosecco or Cava. Because you shouldn’t wait until New Year’s Eve to celebrate life. —Lisa Elaine Held

For more information, visit or check out Weeknight Wonders