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Bad to Good Swaps

Holiday parties, birthdays, work functions and eventually, the Super Bowl. So many opportunities to over indulge, over-eat, and feel like a failure come the new year. Parties mean food, drinks, and of course fun but there are ways to make each outing stress-free and low-calorie!

Here are some simple and easy ingredients to swap in those calorie-rich appetizers and desserts!

Ingredient: Sour Cream or Mayonnaise

Swap: 0% Plain Greek Yogurt. Greek yogurt has the same thick consistency as sour cream and mayo but is packed with protein, is low in fat, and has minimal carbohydrates and sugar! Use in dips, dressings, entrees and more!

Ingredient: Oil or Butter in Baking

Swap: Applesauce, Banana, Avacado- Unsweetened applesauce is a great alternative when wanting to cut fat and calories in baked goods. It gives the dish a fluffy and moist consistency while still maintaining the quality of the baked good! Bananas are another great alternative to use in place of oil and even eggs. The flavor of the bananas can be a bit strong so I suggest using in fruity or spice laden cakes and breads and make sure to replace half the amount of oil with banana puree. As a general rule, use half applesauce/banana puree and half fat. Avacados are a great, healthy fat that lends itself well as an oil replacer. Packed with fiber it will only benefit the dessert or dish its in!

Ingredient: Rice

Swap: Quinoa or Cauliflower Rice- Rice isn’t necessarily “bad” for you, however if you’re watching your carbohydrate intake using either Quinoa or Cauliflower rice are great low sugar and carbohydrate replacers! Quinoa is high in protein and low in fat, carbs, and calories. Cauliflower has tons of fiber, is low in calories and fat and while it lacks in flavor, the versatility of the veggie is endless as it will take on whatever seasonings and flavor you give it! Both can be used in a “fried rice” dish, as pizza crust, in a sweet rice pudding, and so much more!

Ingredient: Sugar

Swap: Honey, Maple Syrup, Agave Nectar, Erythritol, Stevia, Xylitol, Swerve, Monk Fruit. When subbing sugar in baking keep like for like; for granulated sugar use Erythritol, Xylitol, Swerve or Monk Fruit, which all come in a granulated form. And, use syrups for recipes that call for a liquid sweetener. Keep in the mind sugar to a substitute is not a 1:1 ratio. Many of the sugar subs containers will list the ratio accordingly so make sure to pay attention when using the substitute for baking. Click HERE to learn more about Swerve Sweetener.

Ingredient: Chips

Swap: Endive, Celery, Carrots, Baked Corn Tortillas, Baked Bacon

Who doesn’t love bacon?! While that may seem like a high-fat item, bacon is a great alternative for chips. They are great for dipping, have a lot of protein, no carbs or sugar, and three slices of bacon are only 80 calories! Cut them into little squares, place on a baking sheet and bake them until they are crispy little chips! Using corn tortillas are another great low-carb chip substitute. Cut them into triangles, spray the tops with cooking spray and bake until crispy! Dip into salsa, guacamole, hummus…dip options are endless! Endive is a small veggie that lends itself perfectly as a chip or dip holder! Find them in the produce section!

I’ve listed some great ingredient substitutions and I have a lot more on my Pinterest page! Click here for recipe ideas and other healthy hints!

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