OK, I must confess I am not a huge believer in “Healthy Holidays;” I mean, come on, I eat healthy most of the year and exercise religiously, so the Holidays for me are THE TIME to indulge in those treats that I deprive myself of all year long (I do continue to workout during the Holidays though). With that said, I believe in BALANCE. A few “healthier” options balance out my “indulgent” favorites…cheeses, desserts, baked goods and of course there’s always wine!
Some of you have asked me for some healthier options to serve or bring to Holiday parties. I’m happy to do that, but be aware, if you come to a party at MY house, there will be of course a couple of sensible, “Doctor Jacq-approved” menu items, but mostly I will serve delicious, 100% home made food that tastes amazing and deserves to be eaten during the Holidays!
- Feeling Dippy ?
Dips can be great and healthy or VERY dangerous! Take cheese dips, spinach-artichoke (no, having spinach doesn’t automatically make it healthy!), and even commercial ranch dressings for that healthy veggie tray. Try hummus, bean dips and bean salsas or homemade guacamole. Check out my corn and bean guacamole here http://doctorjacq.com/recipes/ I’m definitely including this adorable platter of pita wedges, guacamole and peppers or tomatoes with a pretzel…adorable!
Nuts are always a great and easy snack to have on hand. Almonds, walnuts or mixed nuts are instant winners. Fruit and nuts- need I say more? It’s the Holidays on a dish! I like to stuff whole dates with a little goat cheese, top with walnut halves and drizzle with honey! Sweet and crunchy and can be made ahead! Of course, feel free to slice a date, stuff with a little gorgonzola and a walnut half, wrap in bacon and bake at 375F degrees for 30-40 minutes turning halfway if you prefer…wink, wink…did I write that?!
Let’s face it: It wouldn’t be a holiday party without holiday desserts! Offer richer desserts in bite-size portions, use small plates and don’t forget the fruit! Red and green fruits are festive and delicious! Think Green: kiwis, green grapes, green apples, and honeydew melon (which btw, you can wrap in prosciutto and voila! Sweet ad salty heaven! Add Red: strawberries, cherries, red grapes, cranberries, pomegranates and red apples. Again, don’t be afraid to play with your food!
If you have kids at your party, then you know they will be your easiest (they appreciate “cute” food), and your toughest critics (“Is that green? I don’t eat green”). Make sure to have “kid-friendly” options, and they can be (and should be) simple; think mini sandwiches, mini burritos, small wraps cut up and arranged to form a Christmas tree, and why not Christmas Santas! Check out more cute ideas on Pinterest
Additional Healthy Holiday Party Food Ideas:
- Shrimp cocktail
- Chicken kabobs
- Ahi tuna, fish or shrimp ceviche
- Thin crust veggie pizzas
So there you have it, have a happy and healthy holiday season! Although I much prefer my “real” holiday party with real holiday food! Just kidding, it’s all about balance! Happy Holidays! Feel free to share and comment!