Patricia Bannan’s Comfort Foods with a Healthy Twist

For most of us, Halloween kicks off a season of treats and feasts that last well through the New Year.  Many of these foods come with happy memories and touch a special place in our hearts.  We call them: comfort foods.  For the most part, comfort foods tend to be loaded with fat and calories.  Think meatloaf, mashed potatoes, creamy casseroles and apple pie.  Yum!  This is not to say you can’t have some of your favorites, but with the right substitutions, you can make them healthier and your taste buds won’t even know the difference.

First off, let’s talk baking.  In case you haven’t seen it yet, check out Kelapo’s yummy way to make a better pie crust.  In addition to pie crust, Kelapo Coconut Oil is great for making other seasonal treats like cookies and cakes.  If you make them at home you’ll likely cut out a lot of the chemical preservatives, trans fats and sodium found in store-bought baked goods.  To make it easier for you, Kelapo has embraced the baking spirit with their Extra Virgin Coconut Oil Baking Sticks.  Use them in your favorite recipes in the same amounts that you would use butter or vegetable oil.

While vegetables do exist at holiday gatherings, they all too often come in preparations that undermine their nutritious qualities.  To get all the nutrients and flavor from your vegetables, ditch the classic green bean casserole and creamy potato soup and stick with whole vegetables steamed our sautéed. Try sautéing green beans, mushrooms, and onions in about 2 Tbs. of Kelapo Coconut Oil and top with some slivered almonds.  So good nobody will miss the original!  If you’re craving mashed potatoes, try roasting them (skin on for extra nutrients), then mash them with green onions, garlic, and a little bit of Coconut Oil for a nice savory taste.


Patricia Bannan, MS, RD

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