Getting ready to host a party this weekend? Or maybe you’re headed to a gathering at a friend’s house and were asked to bring a light snack?
Whatever the plan, there are a number of ways to eat your favorite snacks but without the added calories.
Here are six of our favorites, courtesy of the NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital. Combining several of these ideas could save you hundreds of calories and dozens of grams of fat.
- Pizza: Instead of delivery, make your own. Use a pre-packaged thin crust or a whole wheat tortilla, top with tomato sauce and a mix of full fat and reduced fat cheese to save in both calories and fat. If you’re still craving delivery, order a thin crust and cut the slices in half.
- Baked chicken fingers: Instead of picking up a platter of fried chicken, bake your own at home. Bread chicken breast tenders in crushed cornflakes and then bake until crispy. Save calories by making your own honey-mustard using honey and spicy mustard.
- Turkey chili: With just a few simple substitutions, you can cut over half of the total fat without losing any of the flavors. Replace ground beef with lean ground turkey or lean ground sirloin to lower the saturated fat. Top with reduced-fat cheese to further cut calories.
- Kale chips: Kale is all the rage, as are the chips made from its leaves. And they are easy to make — tear the leaves into small pieces, rub with olive oil, sprinkle on some sea salt and spices, and toss in the oven. Not only will you save calories and fat, you’ll also get Vitamins A and C, potassium and calcium.
- Light beer: Light beer saves about 40 calories per bottle. A good rule of thumb is for every alcoholic drink you consume, drink a glass of water. This will help to pace yourself — an important element, because light beer or not, calories can add up quickly.
- Nacho dip: Replace with a six-layer dip. Use avocado, low-fat Greek yogurt, black beans, tomatoes, lettuce and cheddar cheese for a dip that’s high in fiber and low in fat. Serve with baked pita chips to save calories.
If you’re entertaining at your place, check out these recipes for healthy options like spicy-sweet slaw, Denis Leary’s zesty baked chicken wings and chicken skewers at Health.com. Some tasty recipes can also be found over at MyRecipes.com for chipotle burgers, orzo salad with marinated mushrooms and edamame, and KC-style potato salad.
Follow just a couple of these tips, and you won’t wake up feeling as if you played in the big game – or needing as many aspirin or medicines to treat your indigestion.