Keeping things healthy around Christmastime is very difficult. We all have our traditional recipes that we make every year, and it wouldn’t feel like the Holidays unless we served them. I’m not one to ditch a tradition, so here are some ideas to make a few of your favorite holiday recipes a little bit less of a guilty pleasure.
Pecan pie. I love pecan pie, however, the amount of sugar in it is frightening. Decrease the sugar by about 25%, and use real maple syrup instead of corn syrup. The maple flavor will knock your socks off, and it’s so much better for you.
Pastry crust. Never use shortening in your pie crust. Actually, never use shortening ever! It has the nutritional qualities of axle grease. Use butter or lard in your crust. Butter has the best flavor, and lard is super easy to work with. They are both great choices.
Toffee, caramel corn and other candies. Replace any recipe that calls for corn syrup with maple syrup. The real stuff.
Quick breads, muffins and cakes. Liquid oil makes any quick bread or cake super moist. Unfortunately,one of the only healthful liquid oils is extra virgin olive oil. This sounds gross, and it will smell a little strong in the batter, but once it is baked there will be no olive taste at all. The texture will be incredibly moist.
If you decrease the sugar in your recipes, replace some of the white sugar with other options such as maple syrup or honey, and replace bad fats with nutritional fats like butter, lard, extra virgin olive oil, and coconut oil, you will be making these holiday treats quite a bit more healthful, and in my opinion, they will taste even better.