Homemade Red Cranberry Sauce

9 Healthy Holiday Recipe Swaps

Not to abolish everything you thought you knew about cooking your favorite Holiday recipes but… It can actually be easy and delicious to eat healthy on those big Holiday Feast days.

Say what?!

Yes, it’s true! Many of the traditional comfort foods we’ve come to know and love are already packed with nutrition.  With a few easy swaps, they can be even more “nutritionalized” into an equally satisfying AND exponentially calorie friendly dish.

Behold:

Apple Cranberry Walnut Salad

Homemade Autumn Apple Walnut Spinach Salad with Cheese and Cranberries

This salad is a looker sure to make your guests swoon when you set it on the table. Packed with crisp apples, cranberries, walnuts and feta cheese, all the Autumn favorites came to play.  And the homemade dressing? The homemade dressing sends it home… well, not all the way home. With these yummy flavors, there won’t be any leftovers.

Cranberry Sauce

Sugar? What sugar. With so many fall flavors at play your guests won’t know you swapped the sugar for fresh real food. This recipe combines natural juices and warm tastes from cinnamon, nutmeg, orange peel and other natural ingredients to mimic the sugar loaded cranberry sauce you’ve eaten, but knew you shouldn’t have, in years past.

Crispy Roasted Green Beans

Why not swap out that heavy green bean casserole for actual green beans? This recipe has great tips on crisping up green beans and adding savory flavor through natural ingredients. The green stuff has never tasted so good! Plus, you’ll get to taste the green beans this year instead of all the stuff trying to disguise last year’s canned version.

Herb Roasted Turkey Breast

Let’s talk turkey. Straight to the point: It’s awesome and we don’t eat it enough! Did you know it’s a rich source of protein, iron, zinc, potassium, phosphorus and even Vitamin B6 and Niacin? This simple recipe flavors the turkey with savory herbs, lemon juice and white wine. You can feel good about eating this on Thanksgiving day and gobbling the leftovers for many days after.

Low Calorie Thanksgiving Stuffing

If you love stuffing then you really love stuffing. Are we right? The good news is, with a few easy replacements, this stuffing recipe hosts all the familiar herbs and spices without the calorie conundrum. With its use of light bread and less butter, it comes in lower in carbs and fats (and thus, calories) than grandma’s traditional stuffing recipe. These easy swaps really add up, or should we say, subtract down?  

Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Mashed potatoes are a close second to the turkey. You’ve gotta have ‘em! This recipe swaps russet potatoes for red potatoes. It’s still got the creamy, garlicky traditional taste you crave this time of year but with a nutritional boost. Red potatoes are lower in calories and carbohydrates yet higher in fiber. The skin of a red potato (no peeling potatoes for this recipe) provides B vitamins, iron and potassium.

Turkey Veggie Tray

It’s simple; if you want to eat healthier eat more vitamin-carrying greens. This easy and playful idea may even get the kids table excited about eating their veggies. Instead of Ranch, try mix it up by using hummus as the dip. Healthy tip: Always eat the green stuff on your plate first then move to the rest. Your appetite will be curbed just enough so you won’t go overboard when consuming the higher calorie stuff.  

Skinny Sweet Potato Casserole

Sweet potato baked

Sweet potatoes on their own are awesome when it comes to being a nutritional super star. They are loaded with Vitamin A, beta carotene, dietary fiber and vitamin C. The trouble is, Holiday recipes often drown them with butter, brown sugar and marshmallows which jack that calorie count way up. This recipe does away with the calsplosion and allows the sweet potato to breath while still adding the sweet flavors we’ve grown to expect. Your guests will be shocked to know this casserole is made with all natural ingredients.

Sweet Potato and Cauliflower Mash

Try this recipe if you prefer savory over sweet when it comes to the iconic sweet potato dish. You already know the benefits of a sweet potato, now add the benefits of cauliflower and you’ve got a plate that’s basically a nutritional show off. As it turns out, cauliflower is a great source of vitamin C, vitamin K, folate, pantothenic acid and vitamin B6. It’s also an excellent source of vitamin B1, B2, B3 and minerals like potassium and magnesium as well as protein.

This year, enjoy your Holiday recipes meal with uninhibited joy as you know little by little you’re making healthier choices and your mind, body and outlook will follow suit.

Happy Holidays!