Wellness for the Family: Go Further with Food

All this month we have been celebrating National Nutrition Month with Grace Derocha, a registered dietitian with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan.

In this week’s Wellness for the Family we talk about a big problem: food waste.

Slow Cooker Healthier Broccoli and Cheese Soup


  • 5 cups broccoli florets (about 16 ounces), finely chopped
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • 1 medium yellow onion, finely diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 ounces reduced fat cream cheese (do not use fat free)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 2 1/2 cups reduced sodium chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 cup fat-free half and half (the fattier your milk the creamier your soup)
  • 1 (12-ounce) can 2% evaporated milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 (8-ounce) block sharp cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1-2 cups shredded extra sharp cheddar cheese


  1. Place the broccoli, carrots, onion, and garlic in the bottom of 5-to-6-quart slow cooker. Top with the cream cheese, oregano, nutmeg, and chicken broth. Stir to evenly distribute the ingredients. Cover and cook on high for 2 hours or low for 4-6 hours, until the broccoli is tender.
  2. Remove the lid and stir in the half and half and evaporated milk, slowly.
  3. Place the lid back and let cook on low for 10-20 minutes until warmed through.
  4. Then, stir the salt, pepper, and grated cheese. Taste and add additional salt and pepper as desired. Recover and cook on high until the cheese is fully melted and the soup is hot, about 5 additional minutes. Serve warm. Enjoy!

Healthy Broccoli Slaw


  • 2 cups broccoli stems, shredded or thinly sliced
  • 1-2 cup shredded or julienned carrots
  • 2 cups of cabbage, finely sliced or shredded
  • ½ cup diced sweet onions
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • ½ cup apple cider vinegar
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp dill weed
  • ½ tsp celery seed
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp turmeric
  • ¼ tsp onion powder
  • ¼ garlic powder
  • ¼ tsp paprika
  • 1 cup sliced almonds


  1. Place the broccoli, carrots, cabbage and onions in a large bowl. Combine thoroughly.
  2. In a shaker container with lid or shaker cup, combine the olive oil, vinegar and all the spices. Shake well.
  3. Pour the dressing over the vegetables. Stir fully to coat.
  4. Mix in sliced almonds right before serving. Enjoy!

Grace Derocha is a registered dietitian, certified diabetes educator and certified health coach with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. For more tips on how to live a healthier lifestyle, click here.


Categories: Recipes, the four, Wellness for the Family