Most people don’t want to hear what they can’t eat during the festive holidays. But there some alternatives to the high-calorie comfort foods in a traditional holiday meal, that you can make that won’t leave you or your guests feeling guilty afterward, but still full and satisfied. In some cases, it is making a low calorie/low-fat substitution or two to your normal fare.
Type of Healthy Substitutions with the traditional holiday meal:
First of all, you can substitute applesauce in your pumpkin muffins on your snack tray. That is in place of the oil you normally use. Not only does it cut down the fat and calories, but it keeps the moisture.
2. Fat-free chicken broth
Another good substitution that nobody will even notice is to use fat-free chicken broth. This should be in place of turkey drippings for your gravy. You’ll cut the calories from 100 to 15 per cup, along with cutting out over four grams of fat.
3. Turkey breast
Turkey breast is naturally low in calories and fat at 34 calories per 33 gram (1 ounce) serving and 1 gram of saturated fat, so there isn’t much to change there.
4. Mashed potatoes
Mashed potatoes have to the all-time great holiday comfort food but when made the traditional way is full of high calorie/high-fat ingredients. To make them healthier, substitute olive oil for butter and nonfat sour cream for buttermilk.
5. Sweet potatoes
What is a holiday meal without sweet potatoes? But when made with butter and topped with marshmallows, it can be a calorie disaster. Instead, this year try roasting your sweet potatoes. Just search Google for sample recipes.
Cranberries are naturally low in sugar, but many recipes add large amounts of sugar to make them sweet. To cut down on the amount of sugar, replace the one cup you normally use with 1/4 cup of sugar and ¼ cup of Stevia in the Raw®.
Lighten up your stuffing by using olive oil and fat-free chicken broth. Also, add in flavorful, but filling, nuts, dried fruits, celery or carrots. It adds flavor and bulk to the dish, but without many calories.
8. Pumpkin pie
You have to have pumpkin pie for dessert. But you can make it healthier by substituting low-fat or fat-free milk in place of whole milk and egg substitutes in place of real eggs into your normal recipe.
Try this as a test:
Don’t tell your guests ahead of time about the substitutions you made. After the meal asks them about the dishes and what they thought about each one. Then tell them about the changes you made. They will be amazed and in most cases not notice any appreciable difference in taste or texture.