Healthify your favorite comfort foods

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Dietitian Trish Brimhall tells us how we can enjoy our favorite Fall comfort foods in a healthier way.

Here are some ways to enjoy those favorite comfort foods while keeping the nutrition high.

Soups:

  • Soups are an easy way to work veggies into your meals
  • Extra can of beans in chili increases folate, fiber, iron and protein
  • Butternut squash soup is a regular superstar – add in some sautéed veggies
  • Chicken noodle boosts your health even more with whole grain noodles, extra veggies and maybe some spinach or kale tossed in.

One-dish meals:

  • Creamy and cheesy screams comfort – so enjoy that mac-n-cheese with whole grain pasta, and inviting some broccoli to share that lovely cheese sauce.
  • Using a sharper cheese allows you to use less with more flavor.
  • Balance the meal out with produce – ½ your plate should be plants, so if you’re a mac-n-cheese purist, pair it with a side salad and a veggie or fruit.
  • Chicken pot pie makes you want to beeline to the kitchen table, so make sure you maximize the filling with loads of veggies.
  • Top crust only – this saves time, and calories since the calorie culprit isn’t the filling, but the buttery crust. Skip the soggy bottom crust and opt for a simpler, more healthful top-crust pot pie.

Dessert (Pumpkin/Spice):

  • Adding a fruit or veggie into a dessert is always a good nutrition idea
  • Pumpkin cookies – high in vitamin A, and moderate in calories and sugar
  • Apples whether baked or under an nut and oatmeal crust up the overall nutrition of dessert.

Remember that our bodies are designed to get maximum nutrition from foods that appeal – so embrace your healthful, fall comfort foods – knowing that you’re not just feeding your body, you’re feeding your soul.

For more great ideas from Trish, go here.