Recipe for Good Health
Cooking at home is a sure-fire way to plan and keep track of calories, portion size and nutrients. Often, staying on track is just a matter of knowing give your recipes a healthy makeover.
Change Everyday Recipes to Healthy Recipes
Your favorite foods can still be good for you if you make a few simple ingredient or cooking style changes. You can lessen the amount of salt (sodium), sugar and fat without losing flavor.
- Cut the amount of salt by half or leave it out entirely in soups, sauces, salads and main dishes. If you're baking, cut back the amount of salt by one-half in recipes that don't use yeast (when using yeast, you'll need to use the amount of salt noted).
- Search for lower sodium soups and other ready-made products.
- Rinse canned vegetables with water before adding them to casseroles or other dishes.
- Lessen the amount of sugar by one-third to one-half, then add spices, such as cinnamon, nutmeg or cloves, or flavoring, like vanilla extract, to boost the sweetness.
- When baking, cut the amount of butter, margarine, shortening or oil in half and replace it with unsweetened applesauce, mashed banana, prunes or other fruit-based fats.
- Use fat-free (skim) milk instead of whole milk— 1 cup of fat-free milk will save 60 calories and 8 fat grams.
- For dips, sauces and toppings, use non-fat yogurt or fat-free sour cream.
- Instead of using onion rings, top casseroles with almonds.
- Replace one egg with two egg whites when recipes call for a whole egg. Or try egg substitute in place of whole eggs—using ¼ cup will usually be the same as using one egg.
- Leave out foods that are high in sodium, sugar and fat, such as pickles, olives, syrup, jelly, frosting, butter, nuts, coconut and mayonnaise—or use less of them.
- Change your cooking method from frying to a healthier technique—baking, broiling, grilling, poaching or steaming. You'll get the food's flavor without adding extra fat.
- Sauté foods with two tablespoons of water or low-fat chicken broth instead of using cooking oil.
Cooking healthier doesn't stop there. Visit Blue Access for MembersSM and you'll find more healthy eating tips through the Personal Health Manager, like menu planning and grocery shopping hints.