High Satisfaction, Lower Fat: Healthier Comfort Food

January 18, 2013

High Satisfaction, Lower Fat: Healthier Comfort Food

We know, we know: Creamy is dreamy when it comes to comfort food. And sure, macaroni and cheese, pot pies, and ice cream are awesome. But they’re also hard on the waistline, which means these soothing dishes aren’t doing much to help you keep your healthy resolutions.

The good news: You can tweak your favorites with a variety of handy kitchen gadgets and low-fat substitutions to make them whole lot healthier. Try these tips and enjoy some of your classic favorites–without the guilt.

Ice Cream

Make a lower-fat version of ice cream using the Yonanas™ Ice Cream Treat Maker. This kitchen gizmo transforms frozen bananas and other fruit into a low-calorie, nutritious, and creamy treat that actually tastes like soft-serve ice cream. Since Yonanas uses only frozen fruit, the “ice cream” contains zero fat and cholesterol, plus it’s loaded with fiber, vitamins, and minerals.

Macaroni and Cheese

There’s a formula for duplicating thick, rich mac n’ cheese with a low-fat alternative: Cut back on the cheese by 40 percent to 50 percent and replace it with creamy ingredients like low-fat cottage cheese. Make it  even healthier  by using using 1% milk and whole-wheat pasta. If you want more of that yummy, crispy crust on your M&C, try baking servings individually in small stoneware bakers.

Chicken Pot Pie

With its thick, flaky crust, chicken pot pie is traditionally high in fat and calories. You can cut the fat by adding extra veggies, including peas, carrots, and mushrooms and by using low-fat chicken breast combined with low-fat chicken broth. Top the filling off with a 6-layer topping of phyllo dough brushed with olive oil, which creates a luscious crispy coating during baking.

Fried Chicken

This typically deep-fried ultimate comfort food responds well to the low-fat cooking technique of baking. Create a low-calorie version of the well-loved crispy coating by combining breadcrumbs, black pepper and garlic salt mixed with a small amount of olive oil. Coat a baking sheet with cooking spray and bake the coated chicken pieces in a hot oven.


With its rich, creamy texture, pudding tops the charts of classic comfort foods. Try making sugar-free instant pudding with non-fat milk, and give the low-calorie pudding a delectable velvety texture by mixing it in a blender at high speed.


Rich, tempting cheesecake can be transformed into a low-fat version by replacing half of the whole eggs with egg whites, substituting low-fat cottage cheese for cream cheese and using a light graham cracker crust.

Chocolate Cake

Make a dense, moist chocolate cake or cupcakes using pumpkin! Replace the eggs and oil in the recipe on the cake mix box with a 15-ounce can of pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix!). It reduces the amount of fat and calories, and adds fiber, vitamin A, and antioxidants. You won’t taste the pumpkin; just a moist, chocolatey cake.

Did we miss your favorite comfort food? Tell us about it below!

Julie Bawden-Davis

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