Four Simple Comfort Food Substitutions

Winter—the time of year our tummies crave comfort food. Unfortunately, many common winter dishes such as casseroles, hearty pastas, and chowders can be calorie-heavy from fat. Eating too much fat can be bad for your heart’s health; however, you can typically substitute a healthier ingredient without sacrificing taste.

Here are four tips to comfort your tummy while watching your fat intake:

  1. When a recipe calls for heavy (whipping) cream, try substituting half-and-half or whole milk. This eliminates many unneeded calories without losing that rich, creamy taste and texture.
  2. Many comfort foods include layers of melted cheese, which can be a calorie bomb. Try using part-skim cheeses, such as mozzarella or ricotta. They still melt well without a noticeable difference in taste.
  3. One of the easiest ways to reduce your fat calorie intake is to choose grilled dishes over fried whenever possible. Sure that breading is tasty, but are the calories worth it?
  4. Don’t forget that spices can also add a lot of flavor without adding fat. Look for recipes with spices that can add a little heat to your winter-warming recipes, such as cinnamon, cloves, cumin, or chili powder.