Did you know Super Bowl Sunday is the day for the 2nd largest amount of calories consumed in the year? Second only to Thanksgiving. And, unfortunately, this day of gluttony comes as many people are trying to lose weight after all their holiday feasting.
Following are our Top 10 Tips for dealing with all those caloric dips – trying to make them a little healthier and trying to put a little more nutrition into the upcoming day of feasting and grazing.
Most of us know that those sour-cream rich dips are high in calories. So, what can you do to reduce calorie intake in the midst of all that creamy temptation?
1. Serve a variety of vegetables with your dips. Add some new veggie choices beyond the usual broccoli, carrots, celery and cucumber. Ideas are some colorful bell pepper strips, peeled and thinly sliced jicama, yellow and orange tomatoes (in addition to the usual red ones).
2. When making dips, substitute plain Greek yogurt for sour cream. The yogurt will have a little more of a ‘bite’, but will give your food the same creaminess and almost the same taste.
3. Use Neufchatel (1/3 less fat) cream cheese instead of the full-fat cream cheese.
4. Avoid Fat-Free sour cream. Have you ever looked at the ingredient list for that stuff?
5. Instead of mayonnaise, substitute plain Greek yogurt. Add a touch of mustard for more of a ‘mayonnaise’ taste.
6. If a recipe calls for grated cheese, use part-skim Mozzarella or feta for less fat.
7. Updated Spinach Dip: Instead of sour cream in your favorite spinach dip recipe, drain a can of white beans. Puree the beans in the food processor, then substitute the pureed beans for the sour cream to reduce the amount of saturated fat and increase the fiber.
8. Salsa and hummus generally have less fat than most dips. And, hummus is made with ground garbanzo beans, so there’s more fiber in the hummus than in most other creamy dips.
9. Updated Guacamole: Yes, avocados have healthy fats, but one half cup of guacamole can supply over 180 calories! In a recipe that calls for 3 avocados: just use 1 avocado. Instead of the remaining 2 avocados, you can cook and puree 2 cups of frozen peas, then add them to the mashed real avocado, onion, tomatoes, cilantro, etc. Using pureed peas will also add more fiber to your “guacamole”.
10. Substitute whole-grain options for some of those chips: How about substituting whole grain crackers, bean tortilla chips or pretzels?