Are your cravings starting to bother you? Missing that comfort food you love to eat? Do you want to satisfy your hunger without breaking your healthy eating lifestyle? If yes, I have 8 quick, easy and healthy alternatives to your favorite comfort foods.
There is always a healthier option to any meal you crave. The key is to find the right alternative and the right ingredients, that still keep the flavor, but lose all the fats and unhealthy ingredients. I’ve listed 8 great healthy alternatives to some of your favorite comfort food.
Craving: Mashed potatoes
Mashed potatoes are a comfort food staple. Perfect as a side dish but can be heavy on your sides. A serving of mashed potatoes is worth 300 calories!
Healthy Alternative: Mashed cauliflower
A healthier alternative to mashed potatoes are mashed cauliflower. This yummy vegetable makes the perfect substitute to our favorite mash because of its fine texture. A serving of mashed cauliflower is only 70 calories! That’s a quarter of the calories in mashed potatoes.
Cravings: Ice cream
Yum, who doesn’t want an ice cream cone in the summer? This sweet confection has been a comfort food for us since our childhoods and have followed us through adulthood, but ice cream is full of calories and sugar. A half cup of our favorite store bought ice creams an have up to 300 calories and 17 grams of fat. If you want to satisfy that sweet tooth and is thinking of devouring that pint of ice cream think again! A pint of ice cream can go up to 1200 calories.
Healthy Alternative: Sorbet
Sorbet is a great low calorie alternative to ice cream. It only has 110 calories and 0 grams of fat. What a treat!
No one can deny how delicious spaghetti can be. It is easy to cook and is perfect for parties, but pasta is known to have high amounts of carbohydrates. Two cups of cooked pasta has 80 grams of carbohydrates and 400 calories. If you count the other components to pasta like the sauces and the meat it would total to roughly 780 calories! Skipping the Parmesan cheese won’t really make that big of a difference in the calorie count.
Healthy Alternative: Soba noodles
Soba noodles are amazing! They are made from healthy buckwheat and is only 220 calories. Soba noodles contain 12 grams of protein and works well with pesto and stir fried veggies.
Cravings: Salt-and-vinegar potato chips
Salt and vinegar potato chips are great for pigging out while watching tv but remember that one and half ounce bag can have up to 210 calories!
Healthy Alternative: Salted air-popped popcorn
Popcorn is known to have a small amount of calories. A cup of this fiber rich snack is only 31 calories. So munching on more than a cup won’t hurt the scale.
Cravings: General Tso’s Chinese chicken
This deep fried and sweet dish is delicious, but 2 cups of this comfort food favorite are 830 calories. That includes the sugary vegetable. This dish has a total of 37 grams of fat.
Healthy Alternative: Szechuan chicken
This white protein based dish is a perfect alternative. The vegetable is sautéed, so it mostly keeps all the vitamin and nutrients in the food. Two cups of the chicken are 500 calories.
Cravings: Candy bar
Chocolate bars are probably one of the foods that are most likely to ruin someones diet. Treats like the Milky Way and Snickers can have roughly 250 calories each bar. These yummy treats are great for some occasion, but should be eaten in “fun size”.
Healthy Alternative: Dark chocolate
Healthy alternative to chocolate is chocolate! Dark chocolate that is. This type of chocolate is a definite alternative to the sugary version. It is loaded with antioxidants and only have 154 calories. Dark chocolate can increase mood and help with blood circulation.
Craving: Hot chocolate
Before ordering hot chocolate from your favorite Starbucks barista consider how much calories and fat you are consuming. A tall cup with whipped cream totals to 18 grams of fat and 28 grams of sugar. This drink can total up to 330 calories.
Healthy Alternative: Homemade hot chocolate
Homemade hot chocolate is a healthier alternative to the sugar filled hot chocolate. Always opt for fat free milk and unsweetened cocoa powder. Use agave syrup for sweetness and use cinnamon and vanilla extra to taste. Homemade hot chocolate can be as low as 50 calories.
Cravings: French fries
French fries what a wonderful tasting sin! A medium size of our favorite McDonald fries contains 350calories! Imagine eating those calories and fat filled fries with a 740 calorie milkshake and 560 calorie Big Mac Yum. You have just managed to consume 1,650 calories in one sitting.
Healthy Alternative: Baked fries
Instead of deep frying your fries in unhealthy oil opt for slicing sweet potato and rushing it with a bit of sea salt and coconut oil. Bake the sweet potato in the oven at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until crispy. The simplest alternative is buying store bought frozen fries and baking them. A serving will only cost you 200 calories.