All Posts In Healthy Holidays

Ask the Experts: Favorite Halloween Treats

by in Ask the Experts, Halloween, October 25, 2012

candy bar
As a registered dietitian, my philosophy is to embrace holidays like Halloween without going overboard. This means allowing my children to go trick-or-treating and indulge in SOME treats. I’m not the only nutrition expert with this philosophy—I spoke to top experts around the country who weighed in on their favorite Halloween treats.

Ding Dong at the Dietitian’s House
Nutrition consultant Alexandra Oppenheimer, MS, RD claims “It’s not all apples and raisins at my house; I do give out candy but purchase ones that have some redeeming qualities. When picking out my Halloween offerings, I choose chocolates with nuts like peanuts or almonds and skip the sugary caramel. I choose chocolates (and lean towards the darker varieties) because of the potential heart-health benefits and antioxidants. In addition, they also provide fiber, protein and calcium. For these reasons, I prefer passing out chocolates versus candies made completely out of sugar with little to no other nutrients. Although plain chocolates and those with nuts do contribute nutrients, it’s important to remember they are still a treat and should be eaten in moderation.”

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Curried Pumpkin Soup

by in Halloween, October 23, 2012

This is the dairy-free, gluten-free and vegan curry soup you’ve been dreaming of. A blend of coconut milk, tender white beans and silky pumpkin makes a creamy substitute for the butter or yogurt that is usually added to creamy soups. The topping of fresh cilantro adds a mildly sweet touch and pulls everything together. This soup is perfect to serve alongside a sandwich or enjoy alone for a light meal.

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Make Your Own Popcorn Balls

by in Halloween, Healthy Recipes, October 19, 2012

popcorn balls
Lots of sugar and fat can make this classic Halloween treat super scary. This lightened-up treat has a few tricks – homemade popcorn, a few better-for-you ingredients and smart portions.

Nutrition Facts
Depending on the ingredients, basic buttery and sugary popcorn balls can have anywhere from 200 to 400-plus calories. The numbers only go up from there with the addition of nuts, candy and caramel. Treat trick-or-treaters or Halloween party-goers to this homemade version  — with a fraction of the calories — instead.

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Cinco de Mayo Drinks and Appetizers

by in Healthy Holidays, May 3, 2012
six-layer dip
Food Network Magazine's Slim Six-Layer Dip

In the US, the 5th of May is a day to celebrate Mexican heritage. Get your Cinco de Mayo fiesta started with these tasty bites and killer cocktails.

Festive Cocktails
Ginger Margaritas
Classic Margaritas, Lightened Up
Sangria
Blueberry-Ginger Mojitos

No-Fail Appetizers
Slim Six-Layer Dip (above)
Chili Cheese Dip
Nectarine Avocado Salsa
Mexican Tortilla Pizza
Mango Salsa Scoops
Margarita Chicken Skewers
Cilantro Scallops

Tell Us: What’s on your Cinco menu?

Healthy Passover Foods: Traditional and Fresh Ideas

by in Healthy Holidays, April 2, 2012
matzo ball soup
Food Network Magazine's Matzo Ball Soup

In a Passover food rut? Although it’s wonderful to dine on traditional foods, sometimes you just want to try something new.

Traditional Fare

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Easter Desserts for Everyone

by in Easter, March 30, 2012
easter cupcakes
Make festive, portion controlled cupcakes for kids and grown-up kids.

Whenever a crowd gathers for a holiday celebration, there are bound to be guests with various dietary considerations or food allergies. Accommodate everyone on your Easter celebration guest list this year with these seasonal treats.

Gluten Free
Creamy rice pudding is teamed up with sweet cherries for a magical (and gluten free) combination.

Recipe: Rice Pudding with Cherries (*see note)

Heart Healthy
Low in saturated fat and cholesterol, this down-sized classic will make your guests swoon.

Recipe: Pineapple Upside Down Cupcakes

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Chocolate 5 Ways

by in 1 Food, 5 Ways, Valentine's Day, February 13, 2012
Celebrate Valentine's Day with chocolate treats morning, noon and night.

Just a touch of chocolate is all you need to remind that special someone how you feel. This Valentine’s Day, enjoy any of these scrumptious chocolate delights morning, noon or night.

Breakfast
Start Valentine’s Day with chocolate-filled French toast. Even your kid will be shocked you served chocolate for breakfast! With only 1 teaspoon of bittersweet chocolate chips per serving, a little goes a long way.

Recipe: Chocolate and Strawberry Stuffed French Toast

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Make Your Own Chocolate Ganache Body Scrub

by in Valentine's Day, February 11, 2012
chocolate scrub
Make a chocolate treat for the outside of your body.

Chocolate and spa treatments like massages, facials and pedicures are quintessential Valentine’s Days gifts everyone loves to receive. Oasis Day Spa, with locations in New York City and Westchester, offers romantic packages combining chocolate and spa services like massages using chocolate body oil, and chocolate mousse facials. The oils and scrubs they use in their treatments are all natural and use ingredients you probably have at home, and Sandra Lakatos, the spa director, was kind enough to let us in on her secret recipe for their Chocolate Ganache Body Scrub. So treat yourself or a loved one to a homemade chocolate treat this Valentine’s Day — it will leave you feeling renewed and rejuvenated. Bonus: There are zero calories in this chocolate treat; it’s completely homemade and completely guilt-free.

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29 Days of Romantic Foods

by in 30 Days, Valentine's Day, February 6, 2012
chocolate strawberry
29 ways to treat your sweetheart.

Keep the month of February sweet, hot and spicy with these romantic foods.

1.    Start the month of right with 28 days of chocolate.

2.    Read up on Katie Cavuto Boyle’s sensual Valentine’s dishes.

3.    Check out Valentine’s recipes for kids and grown ups.

4.    Keep red foods on your mind.

5.    Make Ina Garten’s caviar dip.

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Last-Minute Holiday Appetizer: Spinach-Artichoke Dip

by in Healthy Holidays, Healthy Recipes, December 24, 2011


Everyone loves spinach-artichoke dip. But this restaurant favorite is notoriously loaded with fat and calories — from the cheesy dip and the fried tortilla chips it’s served with. But this recipe is incredibly easy to lighten up — Ellie Krieger’s recipe calls for light cream cheese, light mozzarella and light sour cream along with chopped spinach and artichokes, and when you bake it, you can’t even tell the ingredients are better-for you. Skip the deep-fried tortilla chips and serve this dip warm with baked tortilla chips, whole wheat pita chips or crudites.

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