Thursday, September 2, 2010

Top Ten Tips for making favorite food healthier




Have you ever remade a recipe into a healthier version?  I have and most of the time it involves using more fresh ingredients and less over processed foods.  Over the years I've learned by trial and error, simple ways to cut fat, cut salt and cut sugar without my family knowing.  A big culprit you have to keep your eye out for is high fructose corn syrup.  This added sugar can rack up the calories of many of our favorite foods.  What ways do you make your family favorite meals healthier? 

TOP 10 Ways to make Family Favorite Foods healthier!

1) Salt- My husband was having high blood pressure issues years ago. The doc said cut the salt in cooking so I did just that.  How to do it? Just cut the salt out of your food prep.  Salt is needed in baking but when it comes to making a casserole, don't add salt to what you are cooking.  Use fresh herbs and Mrs Dash to add in extra flavor. Scary facts about salt.

2) Fresh herbs- Learn about them, use them and grow to love them.  They will be your best friend in the kitchen!  Your food will taste fresh and your taste buds will crave them.  This is one add to add some green into you food. It is easy to substitute dry herbs for fresh herbs.  Read some tips.

3) Milk vs low sodium chicken broth- Yes you got it! Substitute low sodium chicken broth for milk when you have mashed potatoes.  You family will NEVER know the difference on taste.  I make my own chicken broth with the chicken carcass after we have rotisserie chicken. 
4) Make your own bread- Ok this doesn't seem like something easy but it IS! Last year I took on the challenge of making our own bread.  It used low sugar, low salt, whole wheat flour and other fiber rich ingredients.  No processed ingredients!  In just 5 minutes a day you can have fresh bread daily!  Check it out here.
5) Cut out extra starch- Every meal does not need to include a starch.  Get away from having a bread product at every meal.  Add an extra vegetable or a fruit to the dinner table.  Get out some veggies and let your kids come up with their own addition to the meal. See what my daughter did for us!  Less starch means less sugar and that means less calories.

6) Portion control- A great way to make a favorite food healthier is to just eat less of it.  Serve a salad along with the not so healthy fried chicken. Instead of two pieces, just eat one.  If a serving is 15 chips then only eat 15.  Take and make snack packs that are smaller in portion.  

7) Say NO to processed sweet snacks- Do you  know that you can make a healthier cookie? A healthier brownie? At home you can use less fat when baking. You can substitute the oil for applesauce.  You can add in shredded zucchini or carrots to increase the nutritional value of the dessert. Tips on making substitutes. 

8) Change milk- Stop purchasing higher fat milk.  Whatever you are using cut back a percent every time you buy milk until you get your family drinking skim milk.  You don't need the extra added fat in cow's milk. If you do it slowly your family won't notice much of a difference. 
9)We love mashed potatoes.  Sometimes you need to make a batch to go with your low fat pork roast!  Here is a tasty version using cauliflower.  I've been told it is low-carb!
10) Cut out taco shells!  We love tacos, fajitas, bean burritos,etc at my house.  Cut out the extra fat, starch and white flour of the taco shell and use lettuce as your wrap!  WE LOVE IT!  Great recipe here! 

Do you have some recipes or tips to share on making some of your favorite family food healthier? What is your experience?  Did you family like it?  Did you bomb a meal because of a change? 

Please leave some comments here. You link up recipes under my recipe tab, too!  Check them out. Not all of them are healthy but you will find some there!  


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