Healthy Party Foods!

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Healthy Party Foods!

Are you worried that holiday treats and temptations are going to wreak havoc with your diet? Me too!  With the holidays coming upon us, I know I've been more tempted than usual. I don't want to eat junk so how great it would be to bring something with me that I know I can eat!  We don't want to eat this stuff every day, but for those times when we might be's great to have a way to plan ahead.

My friend, Countrymama, of Life and Love in the Country, challenged us to post healthy recipes to help us stay on track this December on our weight loss blog, Gettin’ Thin Together. I was so impressed! What a super idea!  She posted a recipe for Lunchbox Oatmeal Cookies and Spinach pesto, sausage  and pasta dinner. Click here for the recipes.

I've been winging it for quite some time, but was recently encouraged to try South Beach's cookbook as they have put together some great recipes that are 'OK' for me to eat; low carb and low fat--perfect!
I went through the cookbook and these are some  recipes I plan to try this week.


Strawberries (or berries) with Vanilla Yogurt Parfait

4 ounces non-fat, sugar -free vanilla yogurt
1/2 cup chopped strawberries.
South beach suggests 'Uncle Sam's Cereal' as a layer too. It's just a high fiber cereal, so probably any high fiber cereal would be good. or even toasted oats. Yummy!

Spoon the yogurt into a parfait glass then add the strawberries. Serve immediately.

Valentine's Day Dinner 043-400

An easy and healthy snack that can easily be taken to parties, is ...

Chocolate dipped strawberries 

South Beach recommends this dessert (four strawberries only--just a little chocolate).  It's a painless splurge that can get you past the unhealthy snacks. Delicious! You can see how to make these here.


Spinach-Stuffed Mushrooms
 (South Beach Recipe)

1 package 10 oz. frozen chopped spinach
1/8 t. salt
8 large mushrooms
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
In a saucepan, bring 1/2 c. water to a boil. Add spinach and salt. Cover and cook according to package directions. Wash the mushrooms. Remove the stems, trim off the ends, then chop the stems.

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet and saute for 4-5 minutes. Remove the caps to a heatproof serving platter.
Drain the spinach. Stir in the sauteed chopped mushrooms.

Spoon the spinach mixture into the caps and serve immediately or place in the oven on low heat to keep warm.


Grandma's Pineapple Cucumber Lime Jello Salad Recipe

  • 1 6oz package of Jell-O Lime gelatin (sugar-free!)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups hot water
  • 2 cups cold water
  • 1 1/2 cups peeled, diced cucumbers
  • 3 Tbsp horseradish  (I'm leaving this part out. :o)
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated onion
  • 2 Tbsp vinegar
  • 1 1/2 cup of diced or crushed drained canned pineapple (you cannot use fresh pineapple with gelatins. The bromelaine enzyme in fresh pineapple will keep the gelatin from bonding.)
1 In a bowl, dissolve lime jello and salt in 2 cups of hot water (don't use boiling water, just regular hot water). Add 2 cups cold water. Chill until slightly thickened - the consistency of egg whites, about 30 minutes.
2 In a separate bowl mix cucumber, horseradish, grated onion, and vinegar. Fold pineapple and cucumber mixture into jello. Pour into a jello mold and chill for several hours (about 6) until gelatin sets.
3 To remove jello from its mold, fill up a basin half-way with hot water. Lower the jello mold into the hot water, metal side down, until the water comes up almost to the edge of the mold. Keep it there 5 seconds and remove. Place a plate on top of the jello mold and turn upside down. The jello salad should just slide out.
Serves 6-8.
mocha ricotta creme

1/2 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
1/2 t. unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 t. vanilla extract
1 package sugar substitute
Dash espresso powder
5 mini chocolate chips 
Mix together the ricotta, cocoa powder, vanilla extract, and sugar substitute in a dessert bowl. Serve chilled with a dusting of espresso powder and sprinkled with the mini chocolate chips.

261 calories, 15 g. protein, 17 g. carbs, 14 g. fat, 9 g. saturated fats

If you are going to indulge, and just can't help it, then this is much better than most desserts: low carbish, low fat-ish, and enough protein to keep your blood sugar level stable.  This would be great to make on the night the rest of the family is having pie or icecream or to take to a party (x 4 or 5) 

Surprise South Beach Mashed "Potatoes"  

This is one recipe that my friend, Shona, uses and I have wanted to try. I really need this one in my repertoire

4 cups cauliflower florets
1 ounce I can't Believe it's not butter! spray
1 ounce Land O Lakes Gourmet Fat-free half & half
pinch salt
pinch freshly ground pepper
Steam or microwave the cauliflower until soft. Puree in a food processor, adding the butter spray and half-and half to taste. Season with salt and pepper.

This is the recipe that  I’m most determined to make this week! I’ve heard so much about how good it is.  I don’t know if you all are trying to stay on a diet this Christmas, but I sure am! My weight was slowly creeping back up from my loss in the summer—three months on the road sure didn’t help much—and now I’m trying to get back in the swing of things. I don’t want anything to derail my efforts, including Christmas!

How about you? Are you planning ahead to avoid dietary pitfalls? Got any recipes you would recommend?

Happy Homemaking!


1 comment

GlorV1 said...

Everything looks so good Donna. Funny I see you have spinach pasta and that way my plan for dinner. I use Linguine. I saute the bell peppers, red/green and the mushrooms and onions/garlic in olive oil and then toss all together. I'll make biscuits with that or corn bread. Hey, we only live once and as long as we "moderate" we should be okay. Yes, gloria....practice what you preach. Tee Hee. Have a great rest of the week. Thanks for sharing all those wonderful recipes.

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