The last few weeks of the year can be the perfect time to create new, healthy traditions with your friends and family–especially in the kitchen. As a special treat, the coaches are sharing their favorite holiday recipes, including low-sugar sweets, delicious sides and savory, veggie-rich breakfasts to warm up you you and your guests on chilly winter mornings.
- Paleo Chocolate Chip Blondies – Coconut sugar replaces white sugar for a lower glycemic index and more nutrients, while the almond flour and almond butter add protein and fiber to keep things balanced.
- Healthy Almond Joy – You’ll never feel the need to buy a candy bar again! This “almond joy” recipe lives up to its name, and includes a variety of options to keep it low in sugar.
- Spaghetti Squash and Chard Gratin – This delicious lower-carb gratin is nutrient-dense and uses low fat sour cream and cottage cheese in place of heavy cream.
- Cranberry Kale Salad – Festive and bright, this salad hits the spot. If fresh cranberries aren’t an option, swap them for pomegranate seeds or a sliced pear.
- Ginger and Maple Brussels Sprouts – You can never have too many recipes for Brussels sprouts. The first with ginger and maple syrup is a winner at our holiday dinner table.
- Mashed Cauliflower with Garlic – I love cauliflower mash instead of mashed potatoes, and sometimes my kids don’t even notice the difference! Check out this recipe for a super easy option, add some roasted garlic to make it extra nutritious.”
- Pear and Brussels Sprout Hash – I was introduced to this recipe over Thanksgiving and it’s sure to be a holiday regular in our house. Leftovers are great with a poached egg on top.
- Herbed Baked Chicken Breasts – ‘Tis the season for roasting. This recipe uses chicken breast, fresh herbs and olive oil for a super tasty, healthy lean protein.
- Sweet Potato Hash – When we have house guests, I’m a big fan of healthy hash breakfasts.
- Sheet Pan Roasted Vegetables + Beautiful Roasted Vegetables – Roasted veggies are always part of our holiday meals, whether adding them to stuffing or salad or as a simple, flavor-packed side dish. Buying precut butternut squash to save time and feel free to combine the two recipes. We often add peppers and onions too. Recipes are just a guide, so have fun experimenting!
- “Roux-less” Cauliflower Mac-n-Cheese – I love the comfort of mac-and-cheese without the guilt. This recipe is significantly lower in calories, fat, and carbs that traditional versions. Instead of butter, flour and cream, I use Greek yogurt and ricotta cheese to give it a smooth, creamy texture. It’s also vegetarian, nut-free, low-sodium, low-carb, low-fat, diabetic and weight-loss friendly. It can be modified to be gluten free by using quinoa or brown rice macaroni.
- Secret Stuffed Mushrooms – This holiday finger-food has become a family favorite. Marinating the mushrooms in balsamic vinegar is my “secret” that gives the mushrooms an extra special depth of flavor. The fresh garlic and Italian parsley stuffing provides many heart healthy, anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer benefits. The part-skim mozzarella cheese is naturally lower in fat than provolone and the whole wheat panko bread crumbs have half the fat, 30% less carbs, 36% less calories and 88% less sodium than traditional breadcrumbs. It can be modified to be vegan and dairy-free by eliminating the cheese and gluten-free by eliminating the breadcrumbs or choosing gluten-free panko bread crumbs.
- These recipe favorites focus on local and seasonal ingredients for the Pacific Northwest. All include either whole grains or complex carbs, seasonal veggies, and healthy fats.
- Homemade Corn Tortilla Chips – Keep up your energy by pairing this great holiday snack with hummus, salsa, bean dip or all three.
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