8 Ways to Lighten Up Your Holiday Menu + a free e-cookbook!

Between holiday parties and family get-togethers, it can sometimes be hard to keep things healthy. The holidays are known for rich dishes and decadent desserts.

While we certainly don’t want to take away from classic dishes or family recipes, there are simple ways to lighten up those dishes by swapping an ingredient or adding a veggie!

Here are our favorite tips to lighten up holiday meals (which also work for any meal throughout the year!)

Swap sour cream for Greek yogurt

When making casseroles, sauces, dips and more, swap out the sour cream for plain Greek yogurt for fewer calories and fat. Serve veggies with this homemade Tzatziki dip for snacking.

Skip condensed soup and make an easy homemade version

Canned condensed soup can be packed with sodium. Cut down on the amount of sodium in your holiday dishes with an easy homemade version. It only takes a few ingredients that you probably already have on hand like butter, flour, milk and stock, to make.

Opt for whole wheat or whole grain breads

Whole wheat and whole grain bread are higher in fiber and other important nutrients. And don’t forget to use whole wheat bread for your stuffing!

Add flavor with herbs and spices, not butter, cream, sugar or salt

Try adding fresh garlic or thyme to your mashed potatoes to add flavor without a lot of salt or butter. Or, season veggies with fresh lemon juice over butter.

Load up on fruits and veggies

Include a fruit or veggie tray at your gathering for healthy munching. Plus, you’ll fill up on healthy fruits and veggies!

Add veggies where you can

Pureed cauliflower is a great addition to mashed potatoes, casseroles, macaroni and cheese, and more. Or add chopped veggies or greens to stuffing instead of meat.

Healthy baking substitutions

Used mashed avocado, ripe bananas or applesauce instead of butter, oil or sugar in baked goods. Black beans also make a great swap for flour

Festive Flavors e-cookbook

Lucky for you, we’ve made over your favorite holiday recipes in the Festive Flavors: 12 Fresh Takes on Holiday Favorites cookbook.

Download your free copy below for healthier holiday classics like Sweet Potato Casserole and Cranberry Apple Crisp, plus some new favorites like Apple Pumpkin French Toast Muffins.

Healthier doesn’t mean you have to overhaul your entire meal. Just a few small swaps can make a big difference!

Also in the cookbook are a few fun holiday-themed snacks along with tips for creating a healthy holiday meal plan and using up all those leftover in new and creative ways.