We are at the pointy end of the year (did someone say Christmas?!), the festive season is hot on our heels, and as usual, it’s a love/hate kinda feeling.
Alright, it’s mostly love. But sometimes, the pressure of trying to stay healthy when there are so many temptations around makes us feel a little ambivalent about this cheery time of year.
Parties, feasts and over-indulgence, all in the name of little baby J. By January, the haze of good cheer has worn off, and all you are left with is the ruins of a once glorious health status—and the bad kind of muffin top.
Which is why we enlisted the help of the folks over at Queensland Health to set us on a less destructive—but still very enjoyable—path of silly season celebrations.
In this handy installment, we’ve found some delicious healthy Christmas recipes to replace those calorie-heavy, sickly-rich foods that are foisted* upon us for the duration of the silly season. (*OK, we are willing participants.)
Read on for 11 healthy Christmas recipes to help you win at Christmas noshing.
Berry Parfait | Full of bright berries just bursting with goodness, this parfait is so tasty, you’ll be surprised it’s good for you. Low fat yoghurt in place of cream, and honey instead of sugar, you’ll be fighting fit—and satisfied— until lunchtime.
Banana Smoothie | Bananas are from Queensland and smoothies are delicious. Do you need any more reason to make this delightful cinnamon spiced beverage in the mornings? We say you don’t, so drink up.
Beetroot and Chickpea Salad | Another colourful Yuletide dish, this salad is perfect on its own, or as a side dish to standard festive fare like prawns, ham and turkey. Gobble, gobble.
Grilled Corn on The Cob | Chances are the BBQ is already on 24/7 over the festive period, because cooking outside is what Queenslanders do. This sweet, grilled corn dish is a great side for any type of protein, and a great plate filler for the vegetable-inclined among the guests.
Spiced Chicken and Roast Almond Salad | Do you have mountains of left over roast chicken or turkey from Christmas Day? This salad is genius for using the excess, while changing up the flavours a bit. Leftovers are the best!
Sang Choy Bow | An Asian-inspired dish that’s super simple to whip up, sang choy bow is an easy meal with only a few ingredients. It’s a go-to for post-Christmas shopping and works well for festive get-togethers because it can be made in advance and then assembled just before serving.
Lamb and Mushroom Kebabs | If it’s too hot in the kitchen, then get outside and enjoy the weather while you cook these easy-as-pie kebabs. The marinated lamb and sweet burst of capsicum and tomato are the heroes of this dish. Bonus: This healthy Christmas recipe can go with almost any side dish.
Salsa Fresca | This dip is Christmas on a plate: Tomato (red), parsley (green) and onion (white). Add as much or as little chilli as your taste buds—and those of your guests—can handle, before dipping some crunchy crackers, and snacking without the guilt.
Rockmelon & Kiwi Fruit Ice Blocks | Continuing the fresh theme, these way-healthy ice blocks are the best stop-gap for hot, lazy summer afternoons. We love a picturesque snack here in the TUL offices, and this one has the pretty market cornered.
Plum Sponge Pudding | Christmas just ain’t merry without a gob-full of pudding, we say. And just because you are trying to be healthy doesn’t mean you can’t have your pud’ and eat it too. Plums, a bit of self-raising flour, some milk, a touch of sugar and few eggs make for a simple but yummy dessert that everybody will love.
Rhubarb & Pear Crumble | Crumble is a dessert that really could fit into both the breakfast and after-dinner sweets category, and we think it’s down to the addition of oats and fruit. It’s basically muesli, right?
Want more tips and tricks to keep you sane, and healthy, through the holidays? Visit Queensland Health’s Healthier.Happier Festive website for heaps more recipes, exercise and motivation!
Image Credit: A House In The Hills
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