By Carleton Rivers, MS, RD, LD
1. When baking, replace 1 cup of oil or butter with 1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce, drained crushed pineapple, or smashed ripe bananas.
2. Instead of using sour cream as a food topper, switch to fat-free plain Greek yogurt. It tastes just like sour cream but is packed with protein and has a nice thick consistency!
3. To lighten up mashed potatoes, replace butter and cream with equal amounts of chicken or vegetable stock.
4. Looking for a way to make more nutritious brownies that are moist and rich? Replace flour with drained and mashed canned black beans at a 1:1 ratio (Replace 1 cup of flour with 1 cup of mashed black beans).
5. For a lower calorie option, replace noodles with thinly sliced zucchini. This is great for lasagna, fettuccine and even spaghetti (Blanch in boiling water for 30 seconds to bring sliced zucchini up to temperature).
6. To lighten up your egg dishes (Quiche or omelets), use half real eggs and half egg substitutes like Egg Beaters. Just remember, 1/4 cup of egg substitute is equal to 1 large egg.
7. When a recipe calls for cream cheese, replace the entire amount with low-fat cream cheese or use a blend of half low-fat and half fat-free cream cheese to reduce calories even more without altering the taste of the original recipe.