Prunes, also known as dried plums, are rich in antioxidants, beta-carotene, potassium and fiber. Although known for providing relief from constipation, the health benefits of prunes make them a food to include in your regular diet. Prunes can be enjoyed plain, right out of the container, but their flavor and texture complement simple dishes that help you start your day out on a healthy note, or provide you with a snack that's nutrient-rich instead of calorie-laden.
Fill a bowl with 1/2 cup whole, pitted prunes. Pour 1/2 cup water over the prunes and place them in the refrigerator. Allow the prunes to absorb the water overnight.
Add 1/2 cup orange juice and a dash of cinnamon to the bowl. Microwave the mixture on "High" for 2 minutes to bring the liquid to a boil. Turn the microwave off but leave the prune mixture inside for 5 more minutes so the steam can finish cooking and softening the prunes.
Allow the stewed prunes to cool until just warm before serving them with your breakfast or as a snack.
Chop 1/2 cup of pitted prunes so the diced pieces are similar in size to raisins. Drop the diced prunes into a large plastic zip bag.
Add 1 cup of banana chips, 1 cup of nuts and 1/2 cup of yogurt chips to the plastic bag.
Close the plastic zip bag and shake to mix. Eat the prune snack mix plain or served over yogurt or oatmeal.
Alternate to Hot Breakfast Cereal
Place 1/2 cup cooked rice in a microwave-safe bowl. Pour 1/2 cup milk over the rice.
Chop 1/4 cup pitted prunes. Stir them into the rice and milk mixture. Microwave on "High" for 1 minute. Heat the mixture for 30 seconds longer if you want to eat it hot, rather than just warm.
Sprinkle 1/8 tsp. cinnamon over the rice dish and stir.
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Mary Ylisela is a former teacher with a Bachelor of Arts in elementary education and mathematics. She has been a writer since 1996, specializing in business, fitness and education. Prior to teaching, Ylisela worked as a certified fitness instructor and a small-business owner.