Delicious dairy recipes

Jun 5, 2009 at 8:25 a.m. ET

There is more to dairy than milk (although that's quite tasty!). June is National Dairy Month, and besides being healthful and nutrient packed, delicious dairy products can be used for a wide variety of tasty snacks and meals. Here are the health benefits and uses for dairy as well as dairy recipes to help you celebrate National Dairy Month.

Variety of Dairy

Dairy delights

Dairy goes way beyond just milk. Cheese, ice cream, yogurt, butter and cream are all part of the family. Low-fat dairy options allow you to reduce your calorie and fat intake while still enjoying dairy's taste and nutritional goodness. Milk and yogurt offer outstanding health benefits and are sensible, delicious choice to fill your quota of two to three recommended servings. Cheese, ice cream, butter and cream tend to be higher in fat and calories and should be eaten in moderation.

Health benefits of dairy

The calcium and other nutrients in dairy products help prevent osteoporosis, and recent studies show that low-fat dairy can even help reduce the risk of obesity. Still more studies show that dairy can help prevent and reduce the risk of high blood pressure and colon cancer. Probiotics, most commonly found in yogurt, have been found to improve digestion and boost the immune system.

Delicious uses for dairy

Dairy products can be used in so many mouthwatering ways. Smoothies with both milk and yogurt make great snacks or breakfast drinks. Yogurt combined with peanut butter, salsa or herbed soft cheese becomes a creamy dip. Parfaits with ricotta cheese or tarts with cheese and yogurt are dynamite desserts. Yogurt sauces can be used as dips for kebabs and even as tenderizing marinades for chicken. Pudding is a sweet way to use milk, as is the popular Mexican-style dessert, Tres Leches ("Three Milks") cake. These are just a few of the many ways dairy can be a tasty part of your diet.

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