Cutting the extra fat and calories in your cooking is easier than you think. Check out these 15 Simple Ways To Cut Fat In Cooking Over The Holidays. This post was sponsored by the National 4-H Council as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own.
15 Simple Ways To Cut Fat In Cooking Over The Holidays
The holidays are just about here and I know we are all thinking about what will be on the menu. And at the same time, we are dreading the calories and pounds that seem to come over the holidays. While we all love eating our traditional holiday foods, there are ways to still enjoy them and we can cut some of the extra fat and calories. I promise, no one will walk away from the dinner table saying that they missed the extra fat 😉
Now, here are 15 Simple Ways To Cut Fat In Cooking Over The Holidays:
- When preparing your pans, use nonstick cooking spray instead of butter or oil. If you need to use something besides cooking spray use olive oil, avoid the solid fats.
- Cut off the visible fat from meat, and don’t eat it 😉 I know some folks love the fatty parts…and the skin. Try to avoid both.
- Don’t deep-fry the turkey. Baking it is a much healthier option.
- Don’t use heavy cream or whole milk. You can use fat-free chicken broth or fat-free milk in your mashed potatoes (if you want to get crazy, add in some cauliflower!).
- Use the fat-free chicken stock and use that in your gravies and stews too.
- Grab the healthier version of soups when using them for your casseroles (green bean casserole anyone?).
- Consider steaming or roasting your vegetables instead drowning them in butter. I never knew my kids would eat broccoli or cauliflower until I started roasting it.
- Add in some extra vegetables into some of your dishes, like pot pies or in your stuffing. We put all sorts of diced vegetables (and sometimes an apple) in our stuffing.
- Use fat-free milk and low-fat cream cheese in creamy soups and casseroles instead of heavy cream.
- Use low-fat cream cheese in your cheesecakes and appetizers.
- Put some fruit and vegetables out with all those appetizers.
- Use reduced fat cheeses and reduce the amount you use. No one needs extra cheesy! When I find a recipe online that calls for cheese, I almost always cut the amount used in half and no one complains.
- Substitute reduced fat sour cream or greek yogurt instead of the full-fat version of sour cream.
- Use applesauce, plain nonfat yogurt or greek yogurt to replace some of the sugar and fats in baking.
- Time for breakfast and brunch? Choose chicken or turkey sausages and Canadian bacon or turkey bacon over the pork and beef options. Just amp up the seasonings a little if you are worried about flavor. I usually add in some red pepper flakes 🙂
Our kids love helping us in the kitchen, every day, but especially over the holidays. There is just something extra special about creating a meal together as a family, because you are also creating memories. And if you are teaching your children how to cook healthier in the kitchen, you are also creating healthy life-long habits. While I love showing my children how to lead a healthier lifestyle, did you know that nearly 16 million children live in households that are food insecure, meaning they don’t have consistent access to food throughout the year. Those households don’t have the opportunity to consistently teach their children how to choose healthier meal options.
Thankfully, there are programs like the 4-H Food Smart Families program that targets families eligible for or receiving SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) and/or WIC (Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children) benefits and teaches them how to plan, shop and prepare healthy meals on a budget.
What is the 4-H Food Smart Families program?
The Food Smart Families program empowers youth and their families by equipping them with the knowledge to make healthy living part of their everyday lives through nutrition education, cooking skills and food budgeting skills to bring more affordable, nutritious foods into their households.
Since 2011, UnitedHealthcare and 4-H have partnered together to deliver healthy living programs to more than 340,000 youth and their families in 14 states, and their goal is to eventually expand it across the entire 4-H Extension network that exists in every county across the country.