This is the season for both sweet and savory treats. The holidays bring quite a lot of good things, but the problem is that these temptations can put enormous pressure on your nutrition goals.
If you are whipping up some delicious vacation dishes this season, you do not have to make a choice from health and indulgence favorites. Turn any recipe into a healthier version by simply following clever tricks from registered dietitian Dawn Jackson Blatner, RDN CSSD.
Swap 25 percent white flour for a specialty flour like almond or oat flour. Because specialty flours do not work the same as white flour, you cannot make a full 100% swap, but a small amount will provide more nutrition.
Try swapping the 25 percent butter in a recipe for an additional cream such as white bean puree, mashed banana, pureed pumpkin, Greek yogurt, mashed avocado, or peanut butter. It shouldn’t affect recipe results and reduce fat and calories.
Not all eggs are created equal. Eggland’s Best Eggs have twice the omega-3s of normal eggs, “essential” fatty acids that are important for good health. Since the body cannot make it on its own, you must eat it. Omega-3s also result in better cake recipes, as they improve their emulsifying qualities. Blatner says Eggland’s Best Eggs are the only eggs he recommends to clients and their families for that added nutrition.
Reduce sugar in recipes by up to 25 percent and do not add the rest in its place. Recipes will be fine if you recall some of the sugar, even if you do not swap it for the rest.
You want Grandma’s famous cookies, but you do not need four dozen tempting you for weeks. Instead, make half the dough by halving all the ingredients in the recipe. Then you can enjoy the food memories without lingering too much.
Want some vacation baking inspiration that uses these smart baking tips? Prepare some cute and delicious Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars and make your whole crew happy.
Coconut Chocolate Chip Biscuits
Prep time: 20 min
Cooking time: 20 min
Result: 25 cookies
Eggland’s 2 Best Eggs (large)
1 (14 ounce) bag sweetened coconut flakes, plus more for sprinkling
2 cups of dark chocolate chips
2 cups of almond milk
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon Himalayan pink salt
1 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 cup dark brown sugar, packed
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
6 tablespoons of heavy cream
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a 13 by 9 baking dish with aluminum foil.
In a large bowl with a hand mixer or a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, stir together the coconut flakes and chocolate chips.
Add the almond milk, vanilla extract, flour, salt, melted butter, brown sugar and eggs and beat until combined.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 30-35 minutes or until the bars start to turn golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Let it cool for 5 minutes.
In a medium mixing bowl, beat the powdered sugar, heavy cream and vanilla until smooth.
Smooth gently over the cooling rod.
Sprinkle with toasted coconut and let cool totally before eating.
Tip: Try cutting the bars and placing them in the fridge, they taste better cold!