We know that planning for your wedding can be agonizingly stressful, and every now and then, there's nothing better than treating yourself to your favorite comfort food. Macaroni and cheese, pizza, grilled cheese... the list goes on and on! However, if you're working on achieving your nutrition goals, your favorite comfort foods might seem to be just out of reach. The average SIDE-serving of macaroni and cheese easily tops 500 calories, and it's very easy to eat more than this small portion, especially in times of stress! So, we've found some solutions for you!
Simple, healthy swaps can be made to these classic comfort foods to either cut down on the calorie count, or simply add in some extra nutrients!
While soup is one of the healthier options on this list, the calories can definitely pile on if you're looking for some ultra-creamy indulgence. An easy swap for heavy cream? Potato! Cooked potato, blended right in, can be an excellent thickening option for those straying from liquid calories.
The simple fix? Skip out on buttering your bread before cooking. Grilled cheese can easily be made in a toaster oven, and can even be made in a pan without the addition of butter. Still want to coat your bread? Try a butter substitute/ olive oil spray directly to the pan. Given that grilled cheese is a pretty plain dish, you're free to dress it up as you wish! Use mozzarella with tomato slices and basil to create a caprese sandwich, or use brie cheese and add fig and prosciutto for a gourmet, elevated sandwich.
While finding a healthy pasta in the grocery store can be a bit difficult, you can delight in its super-healthy alternative - zoodles! Zoodles are noodles made out of spiralized zucchini, and although they do taste closer to zucchini than an actual pasta, they're a great alternative for those who don't mind giving up texture. Carrots and sweet potatoes can be spiralized, too! Want spaghetti without the fuss? Try spaghetti squash. After baking, the meat of the squash easily breaks away into thin strands, akin to angel hair pasta - definitely the closest healthy swap to its original!
Macaroni & Cheese
Macaroni and cheese is probably one of the most indulgent comfort foods on this list, given that it's a dish that combines pasta and cheese, while simultaneously lacking any healthy ingredients. One way to cut calories from this dish is to skip out on making the roux, and instead add your cheese and milk straight to the pasta. If you're looking for a vegan option, adding carrots, potato, and nutritional yeast can achieve a very creamy dish with a similar taste. Looking for an easier way to make your macaroni & cheese a little healthier? Make your additions work for you. Toss in your favorite fruits and veggies, such as broccoli, tomato, fig, spinach - the possibilities are endless!
There are so many ways to make pizza healthier! Beginning with the crust, swap out standard pizza dough for a cauliflower or spinach crust. From there, try to use low-fat mozzarella and natural tomato sauces. For some healthy additions. skip on the meats and additional cheeses and instead opt for some fresh-cut veggies.
Nowadays, it's so easy to use smart baking substitutions to fit yummy desserts into your diet. Want rich, decadent brownies without the unnecessary calories? Try adding in avocado!