Make Those Special Recipes Healthier
One of my favorite things to do as a Dietitian is to modify recipes and food items to make them healthier and less fattening than the originals. I’ve done this with family recipes (my version of Grandma’s Cheese Pancakes would make my Nana proud). Sometimes it’s a matter of trial and error, but more often than not there are tried-and-true methods that work like a charm. Here are a few of my faves:
- Substitute nonfat Greek yogurt for sour cream; it’s amazingly rich-tasting but contains a fraction of the calories and saturated fat. Also It is a great source of protein.
- Blend one cup of low-fat cottage cheese with 1/4 cup trans-fat-free light margarine for a tasty cream cheese substitute that’s much lower in calories and saturated fat.
- Add extra vegetables to just about any sauce, stew, or casserole to dilute the calorie content while amping up the nutritional value.
- Use vegetable oil sprays instead of butter, oil, or margarine when frying eggs, veggies, and other items. A high-quality nonstick frying pan is also a great investment when it comes to cutting back on fat calories.
- Try baking with less sugar. I’ve been able to eliminate up to a third of the sugar in many recipes without sacrificing taste. Next time you make cookies and the recipe calls for 1 c of granulated sugar try ½ c and you will never notice the difference.
Here is one of my favorite salad dressing to try.
Ginger Lime Dressing
Fresh Lime juice ¼ cup
Honey 2 Tbsp
Fresh ginger pulp 1 Tbsp (find as a tube in the produce section)
Optional: add some olive oil for more body and richness
Adjust ingredients to your taste. Use on fresh fruit, all green salads; also great for a marinade base.
As a variation try —
Lemon Grass pulp (or even garlic!) found in same location of HEB (produce section)
Lemon grass with honey, lime juice also add a touch of olive oil use as marinade for chicken, meats also add to rice and bean salads
Kidney, pinto, garbanzo beans
Chopped celery, bell pepper, cilantro, cucumber, Jicama, onion etc all kinds of veggies would work here! Top bed of greens with this bean salad ½ cup is 1 starch and 1 protein
Adrien Paczosa is a Registered and Licensed Dietitian practicing in Austin, Texas and the surrounding counties.
She is the owner and founder of I Live Well Nutrition her Dietitian practice which started in 2007 and serves clients in the Austin, Texas area in two locations. Fearless Practitioners, the division of her business that offers training to dietitians and wellness professionals.