How To Start Cooking Healthier

Looking to eat healthier? Here are 7 principles of healthy cooking help get you started…

A great way to start is to cook more at home. When you cook at home you control the ingredients and restaurant meals are almost always higher in calories and sodium than something you would make yourself. Plus, you get to make what you like! If you’re not sure how to start cooking healthier here are 10 ways to make cooking healthy meals at home a little easier. That is why we provide all natural meats and organic fruits and veggies to your home!

1. Start With A Meal Plan

Without a plan, it’s easy to draw a blank with what to make for dinner (or breakfast or lunch for that matter). For some people meal planning means writing down a detailed menu and shopping list on a Sunday to be good to go all week. For others, it may look more like scribbles on a sticky note—taco night, pasta night, stir-fry night. Whatever your process is, having a plan helps you figure out what you’re going to make and sets you up for success.

2. Fruits and Vegetables Are Your New Best Friend

Only 14 percent of adults eat the recommended amount of vegetables and 18 percent eat enough fruit. That means more than 80 percent of us aren’t eating enough produce! Fruits and vegetables are rich in inflammation-fighting antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and fiber. It’s recommended we eat 2 cups of fruit and 2.5 to 3 cups of vegetables every day (adult men are on the higher side for veg).

When you think about cooking, have produce be the star of your meals. Make a fruit smoothie in the morning, a big salad for lunch and stuff a spaghetti squash at dinner. Use vegetables as noodles by spiralizing a zucchini or sweet potato. Try to make half your plate fruits and veggies. Snacks are a great way to sneak in extra produce servings too—baby carrots, apple slices, dried fruit or vegetable soup are all great options.

3. Choose whole grains

Pick whole grains over refined grains, at least 50 percent of the time. Whole grains like brown rice and bulgur have their bran intact and thus have more fiber, B vitamins, magnesium, zinc and other nutrients. Try quinoa, whole wheat pasta, oats, farro and barley as side dishes, on top of salads and in soups.

4. Mix up your protein

Meat is a great source of protein but it’s often served in really large portions. A serving of protein is 3 ounces cooked or 4 ounces raw, about the size of a deck of cards. So eat smaller amounts of meat, fish and poultry. Fill up the rest of your plate with healthy vegetables and whole grains. And it doesn’t have to be meat. There are plenty of vegetarian proteins and vegan protein-rich foods that are a great way to add more plant protein to your diet.

5. Limit added sugar and salt

Most of us eat more than the recommended amount of added sugars and sodium every day. Eating too much of either, over time, can put you at risk for health conditions like high blood pressure or heart disease.

Aim for less than 6 teaspoons of added sugar per day if you’re a woman, and less than 9 teaspoons if you’re a man. That includes white sugar, brown sugar, honey and maple syrup. Check ingredient labels on products and use sweeteners sparingly when you cook.

As for salt, it’s recommended we eat no more than 2,300 mg of sodium per day (for some people, like those with heart disease or kidney disease, it’s even less). Here’s where cooking can really help you. Sodium is found mostly in processed foods (see the top 10 high-sodium foods in our diets) so the more you cook at home, the easier it is to eat less. Cook with fresh whole foods as much as possible, and use herbs, spices and vinegar to add flavor without adding sodium.

6. Cook with global flavors

Some of the healthiest diets—think Mediterranean diet or traditional Japanese or Chinese cuisine—are rich in vegetables and grains and skip packaged processed foods. Using spices, like curry powder, and herbs, like basil, help flavor your food without adding salt. Plus, eating meals like Thai curries and Greek salads are not only good for you, they’re delicious (and not that hard to make at home!).

7. Keep portions reasonable

Even healthy foods, when heaped onto your plate, can be too much of a good thing. We’re not saying you need to measure out every bite you put in your mouth (that would get old really fast) but having an idea of healthy portions before you plate your meal can help you from eating more than you intended.

If you enjoyed this content, please check out our amazing flash-frozen food service we provide and start cooking healthier at home! Learn more here.

Active Customers: Share these healthy tips with friends & family and let them know about our service. Remember if you get 5 others to join our service, you get 6 Months of Free Food! Refer A Friend

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The Best 6 Burger Recipes For National Burger Month!

In Honor of National Burger Month, we want to share these delicious Burger recipes with you to try out this month. Recipes of Taste Of Home.

Basil-Burgers-with-Sun-Dried-Tomato-Mayonnaise_exps40355_THHC1997845D03_01_1bC_RMS-1-1024x1024Basil Burgers with Sun-Dried Tomato Mayonnaise
Burger Creator:I often end up with a bumper crop of basil—here’s a favorite way to use some of it. These burgers feature great Italian flavor. The gooey, cheesy centers and scrumptious topping are irresistible. —Virginia Kochis

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Spinach-Dip-Burgers_EXPS_HCK18_201020_B04_014_2b-1024x1024Spinach Tomato Burgers
Burger Creator: Every Friday night is burger night at our house. The tomatoes add fresh flavor and the cool spinach dip brings it all together. We often skip the buns and serve these over a bed of grilled cabbage. —Courtney Stultz
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Barbecued Burgers

five star home foodsBurger Creator: I can’t take all the credit for these winning burgers. My husband’s uncle passed down the special barbecue sauce recipe. We love it on everything…it was only natural to try it on, and in, burgers. —Rhoda Troyer

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Five Star Home Foods Herb & Cheese-Stuffed Burgers
Burger Creator: Tired of the same old ground beef burgers? This quick-fix alternative, with its creamy cheese filling, will wake up your taste buds. —Sherri Cox
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All-American-Bacon-Cheeseburgers_exps48107_TH2379798C03_29_1b_RMS-1024x1024All-American Bacon Cheeseburgers
Burger Creator: Where can you get a juicy bacon burger that is so superior to drive-thru fare? Right in you backyard with this delicious cheeseburger recipe. —Jackie Burns
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Buffalo-Turkey-Burgers_exps44917_SD143205D01_28_4bC_RMS-1-1024x1024Buffalo Turkey Burgers
Burger Creator: Celery and blue cheese dressing help tame the hot sauce on this turkey burger recipe. For an even lighter version, pass on the buns and serve with lettuce leaves, sliced onion and chopped tomato. —Mary Pax-Shipley
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If you enjoyed this content, please check out our amazing flash-frozen food service we provide! Learn more here.

Active Customers: With National Burger month being a good time to grill and spend with friends & family, it can also be a great way to get up to 6 Months of Free Food!

Remember if you get 5 others to join our service, you get 6 Months of Free Food! Refer A Friend

Comment below if you want to share more tasty burger recipes or if you are interested in our full service!

Easy Easter Sunday Recipes

Easter Sunday is approaching and what are you going to make? Here are some impressive and simple food items to make your family this Easter!

Continue reading “Easy Easter Sunday Recipes”

5 Reasons Why Flash Frozen Food Is Better

Keep Food Fresh Without Artificial Preservatives

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Flash freezing your vegetables & meat is the only natural way to preserve your food.”Frozen food has come under scrutiny over the years with many people labelling them in the same category as processed grub. But there is a difference between the two – a big difference. In fact, frozen foods can actually do wonders for your health.” – Men’s Health
Here are 5 reasons why Flash Frozen Foods are better for you and your family.

1. Free From Artificial Preservatives
Processed foods are full of salt in order to preserve it for longer. Sodium is also included in processed foods to enhance color and help bind ingredients. Frozen food, on the other hand, does not require preservatives; it’s just being frozen in time until you are hungry.

2. Freshness
Just because you buy fruit and vegetables doesn’t mean they’re fresh. Many supermarket fruit and vegetables are stored for weeks, and with research stating a clear link between storage and vitamin loss, you may be losing out. On the other hand, Frozen vegetables get picked, washed and blanched within the hour, locking in all the goodness that you should be getting from your groceries.

3. Less Waste
We live in a society of wasters. According to research, seven in 10 households will regularly throw away up to 20 items of fresh or chilled food straight into the bin every month. Not only is it a complete waste of good food but think of how much money you are wasting. Frozen food is measured and it’s easy to keep and use. Cook what you need and save the rest.

4. Convenience
Getting lean takes time, effort and a whole lot of good food. Frozen food is generally cheaper than fresh food so you can buy in bulk and keep it in the freezer until you need it. There is nothing worse than coming home and realizing there is nothing in the fridge. A freezer full of food puts an end to that problem.

5. Safe 
There is a belief that frozen foods are dangerous to eat. Not true; the flash freezing process actually reduces harmful bacteria. It’s the thawing process that can be harmful, but providing you store it correctly, and follow directions for thawing and cooking, then there is nothing to worry about.

Wondering how to get all natural Flash Frozen Meat & Organic Vegetables? You are in the right place. Five Star Home Foods provides this service. Please read more on how it works here.
So what is flash-freezing?
Flash freezing is the process of freezing an item quickly at an extremely low temperature with cold, circulating air.This preserves the food much differently than if you were to take chicken or ground beef from the grocery store and freeze it yourself.


Well, quite simply, your home freezer is not designed to freeze foods, it’s designed to keep frozen foods cold.

When you put unfrozen foods in your freezer, it takes hours to freeze them fully. During this lengthy time, ice crystals form between the fibers of your meat and actually “break” the fibers and force the nutritious juices right out of your meats.

So, when you thaw out your meats, you’ll actually see all the juices that have been forced out of them, and then you’ll end up throwing that out or washing it down the drain!

In contrast, when you flash freeze meats, they are frozen so quickly that the ice crystals don’t form between the fibers of your meats. When you thaw out flash frozen meats, you will keep all of the nutrients and juices inside the meat, instead of down the drain!Flash Frozen meat thaw out in warm water within 10 mins, so now microwave thawing process or oops I forgot to put the chicken out to thaw all day.

The air-tight packaging also makes a huge difference. All of Five Star’s meat is packaged in vacuum-sealed, airtight, transparent wrap to protect against freezer burn, dehydration and discoloration. In fact, we guarantee your foods will stay fresh for up to one year, or we’ll replace them, at no cost to you!

Below is a comparison between a frozen piece of chicken from the grocery store that was placed in a Ziploc bag, and a picture of Five Star’s all-natural chicken which have been flash frozen in their air tight packaging. As you can see, the store bought chicken shows signs of freezer burn with ice crystals inside the bag within a week of being in the freezer, but the Five Star chicken shows no signs of this.
sandwhich-bag-chicken.jpgStore Bought Chicken Frozen in a Ziploc Bag:

five-star-chicken-packaging.jpegFive Star’s All Natural Chicken in Air Tight Packaging:

Flash-freezing maintains the food without the use of artificial preservatives. When you hear things like “fresh, never frozen,” doesn’t it make you wonder what they have to add to your meat to preserve it?

Not only is this packaging important in keeping your food fresh, but it’s also very convenient. If you’re just cooking for one, you can simply cut off only the portions you need. If the kids want chicken but the parents are in the mood for steak, it’s easy to just make the portions you want.

You no longer have to buy your meat in bulk from the grocery store and cook it all at once, or freeze the portions you didn’t make.

It’s convenient, it’s fresh and it’s all natural! Now, your family can enjoy healthy meats the way Mother Nature intended.


7 New Products – Plus We Brought Back a Five Star Favorite!

To kick off 2019, we just added 7 new products to our menu of nearly 300 food items! We hope everyone loves these new products as much as we do! We also brought back one of our most requested products that long-time Five Star customers rave about!

We’re hoping to continue adding new menu items throughout the year, so if you have any that you would particularly love to see on our menu, let us know!

Continue reading “7 New Products – Plus We Brought Back a Five Star Favorite!”

Five Star Gives Back By Donating Hundreds of Meals to Two Local Food Pantries

Five Star Home Foods decided to donate hundreds of meals to The Manna from Heaven Food Pantry at the Salvation Army of West Chester, Pennsylvania in December, 2018. The food pantry received boxes of Five Star Home Foods’ all-natural meats, poultry and seafood to help feed local families who were in need.

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VIDEO: Defrost Flash-Frozen & Vacuum Sealed Meats in Minutes!

Five Star Home Food’s Fast Thawing Meats Make Dinnertime Quick & Easy

Our customers have been raving for years about how quick they can go from freezer to dinnertime in a half hour or less because of the fast thawing meats. So, we wanted to see for ourselves, how long does it actually take to thaw our all-natural chicken breast?

Continue reading “VIDEO: Defrost Flash-Frozen & Vacuum Sealed Meats in Minutes!”

5 Quick and Easy Sheet Pan Meals

Sheet pan meals are so underrated. Not only do they make your clean up super easy, but you can actually serve the meal using that same dish! Just throw everything on to the pan and bake it; no stirring, frying, grilling or boiling required! Perfect for meal prepping or feeding an army.

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How The McLean Family Eats Healthier and Saves Time With Five Star Home Foods

When we first met the McLean family, they were struggling to put a healthy dinner on the table every night due to their busy schedule. Both parents work full time and the two kids are involved in multiple activities each season, making it feel nearly impossible to maintain a healthy lifestyle while getting everything accomplished in the day. With Five Star’s help, Laurie and her family were able to cut back on their time spent grocery shopping and make family dinnertime possible, again!

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Here’s Where 40% of the Food Bought in the U.S. Goes…

garbage-2729608_1920In The Trash.
No, seriously… About 40% of the food bought in the U.S. is not eaten. [1]
The average American household of four is throwing away $120 worth of uneaten food each month! [2]
Consumers are responsible for more wasted food than farmers, grocery stores, or any other part of the food supply chain, which is pretty incredible when you consider the amount of perishable food that’s lost on the journey from the farm to your grocery store. [2]

The popular fast food giant Wendy’s boasts a “Fresh Never Frozen Beef” slogan, giving frozen food a bad reputation, but The Natural Resources Defense Council believes frozen food may actually be the key to turning around the food-waste trend.

“Your freezer could be the secret to keeping ingredients fresh, saving money, and reducing food waste.” – The Natural Resources Defense Council

Freezing food isn’t new. How do you think cave dwellers survived without a Sub Zero freezer? They buried their game in the snow until they were ready to use it! In the 17th century, a below ground root cellar was invented in England and used to preserve food, but It wasn’t until 1913 when home refrigerators were invented, making it easy to freeze food at home to consume later. Today, the freezer can be a food waste warrior’s best friend, allowing consumers to safely store food for long periods of time without feeling like they need to eat it.

Think you’re losing nutrition if the food is frozen? This again! Research shows that the nutrient content of frozen fruits and vegetables are nearly equivalent to fresh produce. Frozen produce is usually picked at its peak ripeness and flash frozen within hours of harvesting, which preserves the nutrient content. When you thaw the vegetable to eat them, they are as fresh and nutritious as the day they were harvested. On the other hand, “fresh” vegetables that have traveled for days (often on hot trucks) and transferred through several distributors before ever reaching the supermarket, are far from “fresh.” They are often degraded/dehydrated and lacking much of their nutritional value by the time they even reach the supermarket shelves. “You can store (frozen produce) in the freezer for a year and the nutrient level pretty much stays the same,” says plant scientist Hazel MacTavish-West, a well known food industry consultant. [4]

The same is true for frozen meat and fish. When the food is harvested and immediately flash frozen (a process of freezing food rapidly below 0°F to prevent the formation of ice crystals), it preserves the fresh taste and nutrient content naturally. Flash frozen products are guaranteed to last a year, but should last much longer than that when stored at 0 degrees. The flavor, the nutrients and the texture of our meat retains farm-fresh quality. [6]

According to The U.S. Department of Agriculture, any food stored at exactly 0°F will always be safe.

When meat is stored at refrigerated temperatures it will have a limited shelf life, as well as the potential for bacteria growth. When you’re purchasing “fresh” meat from a local grocery store, there’s always a chance that the meat was previously frozen and thawed, which can harm the quality of the food. [6]

A family of four wastes between $1,350 – $2,275 worth of food each year! [2] Let’s stop this nonsense!

Here’s how you can combat food waste at home:

  • Buy only as much perishable food as you can eat; don’t purchase raw fruits and vegetables at wholesale stores unless you know you’ll definitely eat them.
  • Don’t discard “imperfect” looking foods, they’re usually fine.
  • Buy and consume frozen food.
  • Plan your meals before you grocery shop.
  • Keep your refrigerator and freezer organized so nothing gets “lost” in the back of the freezer.

For more information about the food waste crisis, please visit The Natural Resources Defense Council.


1. “Food Waste.” NRDC, 6 Feb. 2018,
2. Gunders, Dana. “Freeze More. Waste Less.” NRDC, 16 Nov. 2017,
3. Garren, Ph.D. Donna M. “Frozen: A Food Waste Solution.” The Huffington Post,, 25 July 2016,
4. Aubrey, Allison. “Frozen Food Fan? As Sales Rise, Studies Show Frozen Produce Is As Healthy As Fresh.” NPR, NPR, 17 May 2018,
5. “FSIS.” USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service,
6. “Why Is Flash-Frozen Meat Best?” GreenAcres Market, 16 Feb. 2016,