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Healthy Holiday Cooking Guide

With the holidays here I thought it would be helpful to share some healthy cooking, baking, and recipes for you and your family to try and enjoy.

Healthy (or healthier) holiday cooking is possible, try some of these substitutions to cut down on calories or fat:

  • Use whole wheat flour.
  • Try fruit juice as the base for salad dressings or marinades.
  • Instead of using cream, try evaporated skim milk. You will be able to whip it, use it in sauces, casseroles, and even pies.
  • Cocoa powder is a healthy chocolate alternative; it works in brownies, cakes and fudge (use three tablespoons for every ounce of unsweetened chocolate).
  • Applesauce can substitute for oils in your baked goods (use equal amounts of it in muffins, breads, cakes, cookies, etc.).
  • Instead of butter, use canola oil, olive oil, prune puree or applesauce.
  • Use only the egg whites or an egg substitute in place of regular eggs.
  • Instead of sour cream, try plain yogurt.
  • Low-fat ricotta cheese plus yogurt substitutes beautifully for cream cheese.
  • Use a calorie-free nonstick spray, like Pam, instead of butter for greasing cookware.

Need ideas for a healthy holiday snacks or dinner?

  • Try to use a yogurt or fat-free sour cream for the base of dip for veggie sticks, fresh fruit, or baked pita chips.
  • Assorted, unsalted raw nuts and dried fruit.
  • Cheese, veggies, and fruit trays.

Drinks anyone?

Try to keep alcoholic drinks to one, and in place of alcohol try:

  • Warm apple cider
  • Sparkling juices (you can even mix sprite or ginger ale with your favorite juice, my mom always mixed sprite and apple juice and called it Christmas champagne)
  • Flavored, calorie-free water
  • Low sodium vegetable juice
  • Light egg nog (or you can do ½ skim milk and ½ egg nog)

What healthy substitutions do you and our family do? Have any delicious healthy recipes to share with us?

December 22nd, 2008

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