Ladies, now that the New Year has ushered its way in, some of us probably have in mind to start a new year’s resolution that includes choosing healthy foods. While making right food choices is an important part of eating right, cooking them in a healthy way is an extremely huge part. A great example of using the same food and preparing it in a healthy way and preparing the unhealthy version is sautéing zucchini in olive oil vs. battered and deep fried. What we add to foods makes all the difference in the world when it comes to home cooking.
The key to transitioning from unhealthy prep to healthy preparation of your foods is to take a good look at your recipe before purchasing the ingredients. Remember, most recipes are okay to use but before you start chopping and mixing, scan the recipe to see if there are any things that will boost the calories. Look for that extra cup of cheese, those extra pats of butter and oils, and the added sugar.
Below are some tasty, yet, healthy ideas to help you become a master recipe over hauler:
-Sauté’ the healthy way: Instead of using that good ol’ butter and all that saturated oil, use vegetable broth to sauté’ your foods. Using this method will add a nice flavor to the food that you are preparing as well as add a little moisture. Once you sauté your veggies, you can serve with a side salad and pour an olive oil-based dressing over the top.
-Cut the skin: Removing the skin from a piece of chicken breast will cut your calories by 50. Yes, skin is very tasty; but it’s the skin that contains mostly heart-unhealthy saturated fat. Cooking with the skin on is a great way to retain moisture in your meat. Just add fresh herbs, seasoning, and/or citrus zest between the skin and the meat to add that extra flavor. Be sure to remove the skin before taking a bite to help save on calories and saturated fat.
-Put the squeeze on the citrus: Use squeezed citrus (lemon or orange) on your steamed vegetables instead of butter or on your favorite salad instead of high calorie salad dressing. Adding fresh citrus juice will add a bit of zest to your pasta salad.
-Homemade marinade: Instead of using store bought marinade, ladies, try making your own. Just grab a bowl…add vinegar, citrus combos, and a little olive oil. You can also try fruit juice or cooking wine. These agents will still tenderize and flavor your meat. When you season your meat with herbs and spices, mixed with the marinade, the flavor is sure to come out. Try cutting the meat in strips before soaking it in the marinade. That will allow it to really soak in.
These are just a few of the ways you can cut calories in your recipes. As you can see, there are endless ways you can boost the nutrition and reduce the calories of almost any recipe. Test your creativity and experiment in your kitchen this week. You just may surprise yourself.