Tis the season for dropping temperatures, colorful foliage, and delicious comfort foods that leave many saying, “Seconds, please!” Before you start indulging in deliciousness, though, check out these flips to make your favorite Fall treats more waistline-friendly.
Swap Apple Pie For Baked Apples
Flour, sugar, and butter — these are just a few ingredients that you can easily ditch when craving a slice of sweet apple pie. Try swapping out the traditional Fall dessert for wholesome baked apples. Just fire up your oven to 350ºF, core your apples, stuff them with something yummy, and bake on a cookie sheet for about 30 minutes (or until soft).
When it comes to the filling, get creative! Rolled oats mixed with a little maple syrup, cinnamon, cranberries, and chopped nuts is a drool-worthy stuffing idea. Or simple almond milk with a little cinnamon may be all you need!
Swap Mashed Potatoes For Cauliflower Mashed “Potatoes”
Love the idea of mashed potatoes, but dread that overly stuffed feeling you get from just a single serving? Surprisingly, jazzed up cauliflower makes a satisfying substitute. My secret? Roast the versatile veggie vs boiling! Start by chopping your cauliflower into large chunks. Place on a baking sheet and coat with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Add a few garlic cloves and then roast until golden brown. Next, transfer your roasted veggies to a food processor and pulse until very smooth. Add almond milk or coconut cream until you reach your desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper to serve.
Swap Pasta For Spaghetti Squash
Nothing says comfort food quite like a big bowl of pasta. Personally, though, I don’t do so well with pasta — not even gluten-free pasta. So, instead, I get flexible with spaghetti squash. Try my beef bolognese with spaghetti squash, or just top your cooked spaghetti-like strands with your favorite sauce. Also, another great pasta swap is zucchini noodles!
Swap Fatty & Sodium-Rich Soups For Cleaner Versions
Soup always seems like a good, healthy idea when the weather turns cooler — but soups that use cream as the base or artificial soup powders defeat the purpose of a wholesome bowl. You can achieve the same creamy deliciousness that you crave by creaming your veggies! Start any soup by sautéing an onion, celery, garlic or any other fragrant seasoning of choice. Add your veggie (carrot, squash, or tomato are my fave). Cook for 45-60 minutes and then blend with a hand blender. If you desire an additional creamy pop, add a touch of coconut cream or a bit of butter to add decadence.
Swap Casseroles For Roasted Veggies
Instead of making a traditional creamy green bean casserole, simply sauté or roast some vegetables (you’ll save on calories and on hassle: double win). Roasting oil-coated veggies at 425ºF for 30-40 minutes will help them stay crisp on the outside and soft on the inside. Also, spice top your seasoning beyond the traditional salt and pepper. Try cumin and coriander or curry powder for a more robust flavor.
Swap Traditional Stuffing For A Gluten-Free Version
Who says stuffing is just for Thanksgiving? Come those cold nights, you may be compelled to serve up some stuffing with dinner. Gluten-free stuffing makes you feel somehow less stuffed and bloated the next day. Follow your usual stuffing recipe, but get your hands on a good gluten-free flour. My favorite is Cup4Cup and it’s available HERE.
Swap Store-Bought Pastries For These Gluten-Free Pumpkin Spice Cookies
Hello Fall and pumpkin spiced everything! Pumpkin spice cakes, cookies, and pastries are usually loaded with not-so-good-for-you ingredients that leave you feeling less than spicy. If you’re a fan of the pumpkin spice craze then you’ve gotta try my gluten-free pumpkin spice cookies. They’re soft, chewy, and have a cake-like texture — yum!
Swap Sugary Lattes For Flavored Coffee With A Splash Of Almond Milk
Pumpkin spice latte, caramel latte, mocha latte, vanilla latte — whatever your kryptonite, a warm and sugary beverage sure brings a cozy feeling. This Fall, leave the calories behind by simply brewing a flavored coffee and adding a splash of almond milk. Make it more satisfying by adding a dollop of dairy-free coconut cream on top!
What’s your favorite Fall food? Share a dish with me in the VIP Facebook Group, a place to chat with fellow Flexible Chefs, find inspiration, and ask me your burning questions. See you inside?!