On this episode of The Weekly Wrap…
The Trick to Healthy Halloween Treats : Devilishly Tasty Treats That will Leave You Screaming for More
Yes! It’s Halloween! I love this time of year particularly because it’s quite acceptable for the “Young at Heart” to participate in the festivities. However, it’s also that time of year when we start to gain weight like we’re going into hibernation… So for this installment of The Weekly Wrap, I’ve bundled together some tips and recipes that will help keep you looking more like a Sinful Spartan through the end of the year, and less like a Santa Clause (no offense, St. Nick ;)).
Tips for Healthy Treats
1. Use flax instead of oil
As this helpful article from Livestrong details, you can replace the oil or shortening called for in any baking recipe with flax seed meal at a 1 to 3 ratio (oil to flax meal). If the recipe calls for 1/3 cup of oil, use 1 cup of flax seed meal. Even replacing just part of the oil in a recipe with flax meal revs up the wholesomeness factor; flax seed oil contains less fat than most oils and butters, and the fat that flax seed does have is high in Omega-3. Double bonus!
2. Try vegetable bases
That’s right. Put some carrots in your cookies and some tubers in your treats! Most of the time, the veggie flavors we’re so used to become incredibly mild or wholly innocuous in baking recipes. Most recipes will call for about 1-2 cups of whatever the veggie might be. For summer vegetables, you’ll want to squeeze out the extra water- too much moisture in a baked good is just a recipe for disaster. I’ve seen recipes with beets, carrots, zucchini, spinach, and avocados. Obviously sweet potatoes and pumpkins work too, though you might try to utilize some of the healthy baking tips listed here.
3. Sweeten Without Sugar
As Mother Earth Living will tell you, maple syrup is a very good subtitute for sugar, and it contains all kinds of nutrients while delivering fewer calories to the body. Because it is a viscous liquid, some careful adjustments will have to be made to your recipe. 1.5 cups of maple syrup can be substituted for 1 cup of sugar, however, you’ll want to add .25 teaspoon for each cup of maple syrup. Agave nectar and honey are two other viable sugar replacements.
So there you have 3 ways to make your holiday snacking and treat time a little better for your body. Check out the egg replacement strategy I blogged about before too. If you’re planning on incorporating every possible healthy replacement maneuver you can, I recommend a couple of small batch test runs. I find baking to be challenging enough when you’re following the instructions on the back of the Pillsbury box.
Have a safe and happy Halloween and Happy Holidays!
Healthy Recipe Links:
If you support healthy eating, swing over to Life’s Healthy Pleasures campaign on Indiegogo. Life’s healthy Pleasures is attempting to raise money to donate 1 million of it’s healthy Omega-3 chia cookies to underprivileged children.