Ditch Sour Cream for Greek Yogurt!
Any side that requires sour cream—mashed potatoes, casseroles, sauces—can instantly be made healthier by subbing in an equal amount of plain, nonfat Greek yogurt. When incorporated into a recipe, Greek yogurt tastes nearly identical to nutrition-devoid sour cream. “With this substitute, you’ll enhance the protein in your dishes,” says the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
Forget traditional pasta, instead go for Zucchini noodles!
If your family traditionally starts off holiday meals with a pasta dish, you can get those same tomato and garlic flavors by swapping out noodles for spiralized zucchini, cut out empty carbs while filling your plate with vitamins and fiber.
Lose the old fashioned mashed potatoes, switch to Cauliflower mashed!
For every spoonful of mashed potatoes you heap onto your plate, just know that a cup racks up over 200 calories (and that's before the added butter and gravy). Cut calories and empty carbs by making mashed cauliflower instead. Mashed cauliflower has the same texture and similar flavor, and in addition to being more waistline-friendly, cauliflower is loaded with vitamin C.
Pies no more!
Instead of the holiday pie... create your own healthy version! Simmer your berries of choice in some lemon water and create a healthy crust out of rolled oats!
Chips and dip? Nope! Veggies with Hummus or Babaganoush!
Serving up snacks pre-feast? Serve hummus or baba instead of a cream cheese-based dip, which can pack on around 50 calories from fat and 14 grams of cholesterol per serving. These both taste great, and are full of protein, fiber, and calcium. Add an array of fresh, colorful veggies to the plate for dipping—it’s an quick and easy substitute for chips or crackers and can add nutrients like vitamin A from carrots, folate and vitamin C from bell peppers, and vitamins B and C plus fiber from raw broccoli.
White bread stuffing is no match for Sprouted Grain Stuffing!
Stuffing tastes great... but that doesn’t mean the filler has to contain nutrition-devoid white bread, a refined, simple carbohydrate that can spike your blood sugar levels, since it contains added sugar. Substitute that Wonder Bread for a sprouted, whole-grain loaf when making your stuffing. Sprouted grains can be easier to digest. Plus they contain more good-for-you nutrients, such as zinc, calcium, and iron.
Or, take out the bread entirely and use grains instead! Try quinoa, couscous or farro-based stuffing to cut down on cholesterol, saturated fat, and empty carbohydrates. When these grains are blended with all the other stuffing ingredients, you won’t even be able to taste the difference between the traditional and your healthified version.