Healthy Living Recipes

Healthy Recipes for Meals and Snacks

The path to healthy eating can be easy and fun with delicious recipes from the YMCA of Central Florida! Browse our collection for nutritious tips and menu ideas that the whole family will enjoy.

Virtual Chef

Because the Y is here for you in spirit, mind, and body, we want to help you reach your wellness goals in the kitchen, too! If you need help with topics like dining out with confidence, how to read a nutrition label, or simply want to submit a recipe, contact Chef Gary.

Virtual Chef
Healthy Recipes

About Chef Gary

Chef Gary Appelsies has been the Director of Healthy Eating at the YMCA of Central Florida since November of 2014. His passion for healthier eating has led him on a lifelong journey of helping people feel better through food.

Chef Gary

Check out our latest blog articles by Chef Gary!

  • Plan a Picnic
    This week we’re venturing out to (re)connect with people, places, and feelings. We’ve highlighted a few ways to do that already—including no-screen activities and visiting nature trails in your area—and now we invite you to plan a picnic! Central Florida is […]
  • Dinner and Good Conversation
    Welcome to Week 3 of the STRONG Challenge! This week, we’re focusing on connecting and reconnecting. One of the best ways to connect with your family and friends is by having a conversation. What better place is there to start a conversation than in the […]
  • Play with Your Food
    This week in the STRONG Challenge, we’re focusing on Play On! I can’t think of anything better than playing with your food. I’m not talking about pushing it around on your plate and not eating it, or having a food […]
  • Setting Your Food Goals
    Welcome to Week 1 of the STRONG Challenge! While we focus on prioritizing healthy living, the first step is setting goals. Living a healthy lifestyle is more than just exercising; what you eat is just as important! That’s why we’re […]
  • A Toast to Coffee this National Coffee Day
    Photo Credit: Gary Appelsies, MS Did you know that September 29 is National Coffee Day? Thomas Jefferson once said “Coffee—the favorite drink of the civilized world.” But coffee has been around for generations before he started drinking it! While no […]
  • Chef Gary Appelsies in Lake & Sumter Style Magazine
    Chef Gary Appelsies is a familiar face here at the YMCA of Central Florida, and this month he shares his thoughts on healthy eating and helping the community with the readers of Lake & Sumter Style magazine! The Lake & […]
  • Brown Bagging It
    School is back in session and routines aren’t quite the same this year as they have been in years past. Many of us are still working from home as our kids may be either going back into the classroom or […]
  • Summer Nutrition Tips for Active Kids
    Whether your kids are athletes or they just like to get out and play, making sure they have the proper nutrition to fuel their bodies is key any time of year. But it’s especially important in the summertime for sports, […]