Posted by: molander | November 1, 2009

Recipe Makeovers

I’m teaching a class at church this month on Holiday Organization and Nutrition as part of the Stress Free Holiday series. Because I’m lazy… uh, efficient… I thought I’d share the Recipe Makeover portion here. There’s plenty we can do to “have our cake and eat it, too!” (Warning: I’m sure I’ll be revisiting the topic of Holiday Food in the near future!)

Recipe Makeovers

 

Scaredy Cat? Begin by replacing only half!

Scaredy Cat? Start your replacements small - maybe half. After you taste the result, you'll have more confidence!

1. Know your daily caloric allowance. (Here’s a handy-dandy calculator.)

2. Read labels for serving sizes/calories. Pay attention to the % of daily requirement (based on a 2,000 calorie a day diet)

3. Analyze favorite recipes by entering serving sizes and ingredient list at Calorie Count.

4. To reduce FAT:

a. In baked goods, replace oil, shortening, butter, margarine with unsweetened applesauce

b. In other recipes, replace mayonnaise with plain, Greek-style (organic) yogurt.

c. Olive Oil Budget Saver: All olive oil flavors break down when heated. Use regular olive oil for cooking and save Extra Virgin for salads, bread dipping, etc.

5. To reduce SALT:

a. For non-yeast recipes: eliminate entirely

b. For yeast recipes: DO NOT CHANGE at all. Necessary for the proper chemical reaction.

6. To reduce SUGAR:

 

No Artificial Sweeteners!

NEVER a good choice!

a. Reduce by ⅓ to ½.

i. Especially if replacing oil with applesauce.

ii. Spices can be increased.

iii. Vanilla will enhance sweetness.

iv. Artificial sweeteners are non-foods; chemical cocktails. Do not use – no debate. Period. Currently stevia (Truvia) or Xylitol (XyloSweet) are relatively more acceptable because they are less processed and made from natural substances. Here’s a good explanation of the controversy. FYI, we use no substitute at all at our house.

7. Boost Nutritional Content

a. all-purpose flour –> whole wheat flour

b. regular pasta –> whole wheat pasta (Try organic semolina if you have picky ones. They’ll never know.)

c. heavy cream, whole milk –> skim milk

i. add a little cornstarch to thicken if necessary

8. Delete an Ingredient?

a. How would that spice cake taste without the cream cheese frosting?

b. Can you leave out the nuts? (Yes, nuts are good for you but also very high in calories.

c. Coconut?

d. Optional condiments? (pickles, olives, butter, mayo, syrup, jelly, mustard) which can have large amounts of sodium, sugar, fat & calories

i. Put them out for others if you must but no one is twisting your arm to load your grilled chicken sandwich on whole wheat full of extra fat, sodium and sugar (which = extra calories, too, btw.)

9. Change the Cooking Method

a. braising, broiling, grilling and steaming are good choices

10. Reduce Portion Sizes

a. Duh! This is obvious but so few of us do it.

11. Use Organic Ingredients Whenever Possible

a. For a basic overview of why, see a previous post: Living in Ignorant Bliss

The bones of this post were from the Mayo Clinic site. Embellishments were purely me! Looking forward to researching more healthy holiday eating tips!

 

i. Making over recipes

1. Know your daily caloric allowance. http://www.freedieting.com/tools/calorie_calculator.htm

2. Read labels for serving sizes/calories. Pay attention to the % of daily requirement (based on a 2,000 calorie a day diet)

3. Analyze favorite recipes by entering serving sizes and ingredient list at http://caloriecount.about.com/cc/recipe_analysis.php

4. To reduce FAT:

a. In baked goods, replace oil, shortening, butter, margarine with unsweetened applesauce

b.

 

 

Scaredy Cat Tip: Reduce by ½ at first.

In other recipes, Replace mayonnaise with plain, Greek-style (organic) yogurt.

c. Olive Oil Budget Saver: All Olive Oil flavors break down when heated. Use regular olive oil for cooking and save Extra Virgin for salads, bread dipping, etc.

5. To reduce SALT:

a. For non-yeast recipes: eliminate entirely

b. For yeast recipes: DO NOT CHANGE at all. Necessary for the proper chemical reaction.

6. To reduce SUGAR:

a. Reduce by ⅓ to ½.

i. Especially if replacing oil with applesauce.

ii. Spices can be increased.

iii. Vanilla will enhance sweetness.

iv. Artificial sweeteners are non-foods; chemical cocktails. Currently stevia (Truvia) or Xylitol (XyloSweet) are acceptable because they are less processed and made from natural substances.

7. Boost Nutritional Content

a. all-purpose flour àwhole wheat

b. regular pasta à whole wheat

c. heavy cream, whole milk à skim milk

i. add a little cornstarch to thicken if necessary

8. Delete an Ingredient?

a. How would that spice cake taste without the cream cheese frosting?

b. Can you leave out the nuts? (Yes, nuts are good for you but also very high in calories.

c. Coconut?

d. Optional condiments? (pickles, olives, butter, mayo, syrup, jelly, mustard) which can have large amounts of sodium, sugar, fat & calories

i. Put them out for others if you must but no one is twisting your arm to load you grilled chicken sandwich on whole wheat full of extra sodium, sugar and fat (which = extra calories)

9. Change the Cooking Method

a. braising, broiling, grilling and steaming  are good choices

10. Reduce Portion Sizes

a. Duh! This is obvious but so few of us do it.

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Responses

  1. […] not soup-and-grilled-cheese weather, I don’t know what is! Before Thanksgiving, I posted some tips for improving our favorite recipes so let’s see what we can do with my beloved grilled cheese […]


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