Thanksgiving is known as the holiday where we stuff ourselves until we feel sick. There are endless amounts of food, and not all of them are healthy options. When preparing for Thanksgiving, or cooking in general, here are some cooking substitutions to create a healthier dish.
Instead Of This ---> Try This!
Appetizers Play with your food ---> Make a turkey out of cut up vegetables! Get creative!
Bacon ---> Canadian bacon, turkey bacon, smoked turkey, or lean prosciutto
- Oil: Substitute 1 cup of vegetable oil with 1/2 cup pureed fruit (applesauce, banana). Start by replacing half the amount of oil and adjust as needed
- Sugar: Cut the amount of sugar in half
Butter (for sautéing) ---> Healthy Oils such as olive oil or coconut oil
- Evaporated skim milk
- Light coconut milk
- Pureed vegetables (potatoes, steamed cauliflower) to thicken
Eggs ---> Two egg whites or 1/4 cup egg substitute for each whole egg
Fattening sauces or gravy on meat/poultry/fish
- Marinate meat/poultry/fish with healthy oils
- Season with fresh herbs and spices
- Top with fruit salsa
- Sprinkle powdered sugar
- Heat frosting and drizzle on baked goods
- Fruit toppings
Gravy ---> Chill until the fat hardens, then remove fat
Lettuce, iceberg ---> Arugula, kale, spinach, watercress, romaine
- Use skim milk, chicken broth, garlic or garlic powder, and Parmesan cheese instead of whole milk and butter
- Light mayo
- Plain fat free Greek yogurt
Meat (especially in soups, chili, and burgers)
- Use half of meat and bulk the recipe up with more vegetables (cut up mushrooms, onions, celery, etc)
- Vegetarian sources of protein such as beans and Lentils
- Ground turkey instead of ground beef
Poultry ---> Remove the skin before eating
Salt ---> Herbs and Spices
Sour Cream ---> Plain Fat Free Greek Yogurt
Toppings and Dressings ---> Less bread and fried onions, more onions, celery, vegetables
White Grains ---> Whole Grains
Remember the true meaning of Thanksgiving, to be thankful and spend time with our family, friends, and loved ones!