One huge benefit of home cooking is that you can make most dishes healthier with some simple ingredient substitutions. And no, you won’t be sacrificing flavor or satisfaction! Typically, these swaps bring extra layers of flavor. Want to know some of my favorite ways to slash excess calories, added sugars, and saturated fats?! Here are my top three…
- Plain nonfat Greek yogurt INSTEAD of sour cream – if you haven’t tried this… DO IT NOW. I love having a creamy element on tacos, baked potatoes, chili, and burrito bowls, and Greek yogurt is the perfect swap for sour cream. Seriously… so good, you won’t even notice the switch! When shopping, make sure to get plain and the nonfat variety that way there will be 0 grams of saturated fat. As a bonus, Greek yogurt is a good protein source too. Bring this topping to your next taco Tuesday.
- Avocado INSTEAD of mayonnaise – avocados bring that creamy texture and flavor without those not-so-good fats found in mayo. Avocados are rich in healthy monounsaturated fats, fiber, and vitamins and minerals. They also bring an extra level of flavor to any dish. So, the next time you want to put mayo on a sandwich, use avocado or even smashed avocado instead. Making a tuna salad, pasta salad, or mayonnaise-based dish? Try replacing the mayo with avocado. You can even blend up the avocado with a little water or olive oil to make it creamier to distribute.
- Unsweetened applesauce or mashed banana INSTEAD of sugar – especially when baking, these pureed fruits still bring the sweetness without the excess calories coming from added sugars. It is also a fun way to bring an added taste and texture to your dish. A good takeaway… it doesn’t have to be all or nothing! For example, take your favorite baked dessert recipe, swap out half of the regular sugar and replace half with applesauce or banana. Typically a 1:1 ratio can be used, but for every cup of added pureed fruit, make sure to reduce the amount of liquid in the recipe by ¼ cup.
What are your favorite ingredient swaps? Let’s hear them!