Good-for-You Pasta and Other No-Guilt Comfort Foods
Here are five delicious cheats that you'll feel good about eating.
The 58-Calorie Spaghetti
Using a spiralizer
or a vegetable peeler, you can transform fresh, whole zucchini into thin, pasta-like noodles or ribbons. A generous three-cup portion sets you back only 58 calories
and supplies nearly 20 percent of your daily adequate intake needs for potassium (more than four times its starchier counterpart), a mineral that helps control blood pressure. To take the raw edge off, briefly heat the zucchini "pasta" in your sauce (pesto pairs with it nicely).
Get the recipe: Zucchini "Spaghetti" with Pesto
The High-Fiber Mashed Potatoes
If you haven't tried whipped cauliflower yet, prepare to be amazed: Somehow, the cruciferous vegetable is a superconvincing substitute for mashed potatoes when you steam it and puree it with coconut milk, salt, pepper and coconut oil. It becomes thick and creamy, just like spuds do, but with a much higher fiber content (12 grams versus 2), and considerably fewer calories and carbs.
Watch the how-to: Whipped Cauliflower
Ranch Dressing with a Green Twist
Is there anything the humble avocado cannot do? We've seen it in chocolate pudding
, and the latest feat this wonder-ingredient has pulled off is none other than ranch dressing. Its mild taste and creamy texture makes it a natural for the smooth dressing that's delicious on everything from salads to chicken wings. And the recipe includes no dairy; it's just garlic, avocado, vegetable broth, lemon juice, olive oil, onion powder, paprika, salt and fresh dill.
Get the recipe: Avocado-Ranch Dressing
The Crustless Apple Pie
Soft, yielding fruit and warming cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg don't have to be accompanied by loads of sugar and a crust that's heavy with butter. Actually, a baked apple sprinkled with raisins, unsweetened shredded coconut and antioxidant-rich spices tastes so delicious, you won't even miss eating the dessert the traditional way. The apple makes a lovely serving vessel on its own; just dig out the core and spoon in the filling.
Get the recipe: Baked Apples
Insta-Soft Serve Made from an Unlikely Ingredient
We didn't believe it until we tried it, but blitzing frozen bananas in a food processor really does transform them into a convincing alternative to soft-serve ice cream. You simply pulse the frozen fruit in the bowl of a food processor to break it up, and then run the machine for a few minutes, scraping down the bowl occasionally. You can transfer it to a serving bowl and eat it immediately, or let the puree set in the freezer for 15 minutes, or until it's scoopable. Cinnamon, shaved dark chocolate or crushed, low-calorie ginger snaps make great toppings, as does maple syrup.
Get the recipe: Banana Soft-Serve