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Healthy Living: Lighten up your cooking

Eating healthier does not mean giving up all your favorite foods.

And it doesn’t mean you have to learn a whole new set of recipes. In fact, you can “lighten up” many of your favorite foods with just a few quick tricks. Here are some of my favorites:

1. Use less oil in baking recipes. If a cake calls for 1 cup of oil, you can get away with using just 2/3 cup.
2. Let soups and stews cool, which allows the fat to rise to the top and solidify. You can then more easily skim off this fat with a spoon. Then, just reheat to serve.
3. Decrease the amount of sugar in recipes by 1/4 to 1/2. Try to never use more than 1/4 cup of sweetener per cup of flour. To compensate, cut back on sour flavors and use a bit more of sweeter flavors like vanilla and cinnamon.
4. Season your dishes with herbs, spices, lemon and flavored vinegar instead of high-fat and high-sugar sauces.
5. Add beans, vegetables and fruits to your favorite dishes to boost the nutrition and flavor, as well as stretch out the number of servings. Adding half a cup of black beans to a serving of your favorite soup will add just over 100 calories, but about 7 grams of fiber and 7 grams of protein to the dish – a very good tradeoff in my book.

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Posted in: Healthy Living

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