Sometimes our favorite recipes call for heavy, fatty ingredients, but it’s not hard to make a few creative, real food substitutions when you cook. Try these fifteen surprisingly delicious swaps if you want to lower the calories.
1. Butter and cream are very nutritious – but they're also high in saturated fat. Mashed potatoes with olive oil and garlic are fabulously still rich with less saturated fat.
2. Swap the sugar in your morning oatmeal for cinnamon. It’s calorie-free and packs a flavor wallop.
3. Bulking up hamburger patties with shredded zucchini cuts calories and fat without detracting from the big, beefy taste.
4. Replace half the oil in brownies and chocolate cakes with naturally sweet applesauce.
5. Mix zucchini wedges with strips of potatoes for lower-calorie mock French fries.
6. Make low-fat canned baked beans taste as rich as their carb-heavy counterparts with chopped onion, yellow mustard and a dash of Worcestershire sauce.
7. Replace white pasta in chicken soup with fiber-rich white beans or chickpeas.
8. Add shredded vegetables to jarred pasta sauce to lighten the calorie load.
9. Try a swipe of plain fiber-filled hummus instead of mayo on burger and sandwiches.
10. Bulk up scrambled eggs with greens. They’re not just for salads!
11. Ditch the butter on corn on the cob. Try a squeeze of lime and a little cumin.
12. Make microwave popcorn at home in a paper bag using olive oil instead of butter.
13. Season plain veggies with vitamin-rich nutritional yeast flakes instead of salt.
14. Use fat-free peanut butter powder in smoothies and oatmeal instead of fat-full peanut butter.
15. Replace sour cream spoonful for spoonful with thick, low-fat Greek yogurt.
These fast and healthy nutritional fixes can make your recipes just a little bit lighter – give them a try next time you whip something up!