Transform spuds from side dish to main entree

LOS ANGELES There are ways to dress up your potato to make it a whole meal on its own.

Along with your potato, you're going to want to add produce, protein and a bit of fat to make your spud a real supper. Here are some combinations that will have your taste buds saying fun and filling like our version of a French Nicoise.

Combine drained canned tuna, brined olives, blanched green beans and sliced egg. Drizzle a little olive oil or vinaigrette if desired.

For an Italian super spud, combine crumbled Italian veggie burger with sun dried tomatoes, grilled sweet peppers, mushrooms, onions and shaved Parmesan. Add a tablespoon of bruschetta made of tomato, olive oil, garlic and basil.

Another tasty dish is a barbecue chicken potato with some sliced green onions.

A Japanese-style spud includes cooked shrimp, shredded carrots, blanched snow peas, broccoli and slivered almonds. Top the whole thing off with Annie's or Trader Joe's Goddess Dressing.

A bit of Mexico can be yours with a combination of black beans, corn, green onions topped with salsa, cilantro and a smattering of Monterey Jack.

Finally, if you like a more decadent baker, go with a classic. Add one slice of bacon, low fat cheddar and low fat sour cream with a sprinkle of chives.

A 1- to 2.5-inch potato is considered small and amounts to about 150 calories. Medium potatoes ranging 2-to 3.75-inches long amount to almost 200 calories. Something larger will be over 300 calories before you add any extras.

As you might have guessed, portions count, so with a larger potato, try eating just half.

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