The fall season is upon us, which means holidays filled with family gatherings are just around the corner. Besides family, what is one of the staples at your holiday get togethers? – Food!
Food not only fills the belly, but it also fills the spirit and helps to unite people. There is nothing more endearing than sharing a great meal together. However, all of those delicious treats that are served often end up leaving you feel a little guilty – and your pants feeling a little bit tighter. Enjoying great food and full bellies doesn’t mean that you have to eat foods that are high in calories. This holiday season, keep your family and friends happy – and healthy – by serving some of these guilt-free holiday dishes.
Image Courtesy Of: Nanalena
Instead of setting out bowls of deep fried potato chips and dips that are high in fat and calories, welcome your guests with this sweet and savory snack mix. Made with garbanzo beans, wheat cereal, raisins, dried pineapples, and honey, this snack is certainly a much healthier alternative to bags of potato chips and cheese puffs. The addition of Worcestershire sauce and chili powder adds a little hint of spiciness, which perfectly accents the sweetness of the pineapples, honey, and raisins.
Stuffing is one of those quintessential holiday side dishes. However, while the traditional version certainly is mouthwatering, it isn’t necessarily very healthy for you. For a healthier alternative that has no fat and is very low in calories, but is just as high in deliciousness, try this wild rice version. It is made with a combination of brown and wild rice, as well as mushrooms, celery, and green onions; and it takes hardly any time to whip up. Talk about a delicious, healthy holiday dish.
Is ham a main dish for your holiday affairs? If so, try substituting that cured variety for a healthier, and even tastier, Tuscan pork loin. Use a lean cut of pork loin and add garlic, rosemary, and lemon zest to give it a delicious, mouth-watering taste. Not only is this holiday main dish better for your and super tasty, but it will leave you feeling less “over” stuffed than your traditional ham dish. Oh, and it’s really easy to prepare-another added bonus.
When the dinner dishes are cleared, gather your family back around the table to satisfy their sweet tooth; but, instead of serving not-so-good for you pies, cakes, and cookies, try out a healthier sweet treat, like this holiday bark. It is made with white chocolate, as well as dried cranberries and almonds, which add a bunch of antioxidants and protein. Not only will that sweet tooth be tickled, but your family will gain the health benefits of the ingredients, as well. The holiday bark also contains much less fat and calories than a big ol’ slice of chocolate cake or pumpkin pie.
Image Courtesy Of: Suzanne Caisse
Food certainly is one of the main ingredients of a holiday gathering. While you do want to retain the memories of a great family meal, you don’t want to retain the excess calories. This year, be more health conscious and avoid the extra weight by serving up healthier food options.
Naomi Shaw is a freelance writer and mom of three in Southern California. She loves to cook and with the holidays approaching, she knows that being more health-conscious will make for a much happier crowd. You can find more of her writing at the Candy Concepts Inc. blog.