4 Substitutes for Healthier Holiday Meals
By Brandi Swieter
Holiday meals are often full of calories, fat, and sugar. With so many dishes laid out on the table, it is easy for people to overeat and consume a full day’s worth of calories in one sitting. Rather than serving up a fattening feast to the family, some substitutions can be made for a healthier solution.
Fruit-Infused Water Instead of Punch
Many holiday gatherings use punch as an easy way to serve up a drink to the entire party. Often made with sherbet, soda, and juice, the drink contains much more sugar than one person needs. Instead of serving this sugary beverage, fruit-infused water is a much healthier alternative. Place the sliced fruit into a pitcher of water and let it sit for at least a few hours before served. Apples and cinnamon sticks are a great recipe to try for a holiday gathering, but berries work as well.
Eggnog is a popular holiday drink, typically served at Christmas but sometimes as early as Thanksgiving. The drink is high in calories and fat, making it a less than healthy beverage choice. Those that still want to enjoy the holiday favorite can create a homemade version that is low-fat and easy to make. All it takes is nonfat milk, orange zest, eggs, sugar, one vanilla bean, cornstarch, and a hint of nutmeg.
Avocado-Feta Dip Instead of Chip Dip
Those who serve appetizers throughout the day before the big meal gets served often set out some sort of chip dip for people to enjoy. Chip dip can be high in calories, particularly if a store-bought version is used. Instead of having this option for the holidays, create an avocado-feta dip instead. It pairs well with vegetables, definitely a healthier alternative to chips, or crackers and bread slices.
Roasted Potatoes Instead of Mashed
Mashed potatoes and gravy is a classic side dish for any meal, not just during the holidays. With the gravy, salt, and butter mixed in, this isn’t the healthiest choice a person could make. Instead of mashed, try roasted potatoes instead. Seasonings can help add flavor and they still have the potato taste many people enjoy.
Eating healthy doesn’t have to stop a person from enjoying a holiday meal. Rather than skipping out on the family festivities, whip up some healthier alternatives to the common offerings instead. It lets you enjoy a few of the favorites while eating clean for the rest of the meal.
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