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Monday, May 31, 2010

10 Bikini body food substitutions

Happy Memorial Day!

With today marking the unofficial start to summer,  I thought what better than some swimsuit (I know, bikini-gag) inspired tips!?

 

10 Bikini body food substitutions

Those homemade blueberry scones you love for breakfast? You can have them – simply swap in nutrient-dense ingredients. The burger you can’t live without on the weekend cookouts? Make it lean and trim it down in size. Can’t resist a good plate of pasta? Chef Irby recommends ditching the store-bought marinara (often high in sugar) and making your own fresh tomato sauce. Satisfying flavor is on the menu this summer, ladies, and these simple substitutions can be used all year round.

1. Substitute wheat flour for white flour

Substituting wheat flour for half of the white flour will make your scones, muffins or pancakes more bikini-friendly, but Chef Irby suggests going a step further by adding fresh wild raspberries, blueberries, or blackberries, which will liven up the flavor, wake up the color, and give a fresh, flavorful twist to an otherwise boring breakfast.

2. Swap out full-fat cream for non-fat dairy

Can't resist clam chowder? Swap out the cream and make it a diet-friendly treat. Cream sauces and creamy soups get most of their creaminess from fat- and calorie-laden heavy whipping cream. Replace cream with a combination of half nonfat milk and half nonfat sour cream. Chef Irby says you will get the same coveted creamy texture without the unwanted creamy.

3. Lighten up your egg dishes

You don't need to swear off whole eggs completely; eggs are used as a binder in many dishes and using only egg whites can get pricey. Chef Irby suggests using two egg whites for every one egg for a leaner, lighter breakfast, and when baking or making dishes such as burgers, replace half of the whole eggs with egg whites to keep the texture but save on calories, fat, and cholesterol. "As a side note, the majority of protein in eggs comes from the egg whites, not the yolk, making them a deliciously healthy option all around" the Bikini Chef adds.

4. Cut back on the high-fat beef

If you crave a hamburger, make your own lighter, leaner version by combining lean ground beef and lean ground turkey. You'll find you sacrifice nothing on flavor or texture but save yourself plenty on fat and calories. To further help you reach your beach body goals, trim down the size of these leaner burgers by making sliders (mini-burgers) for lunch and dinner, as well as for tasty bites at summer pool parties.

5. Replace mayo with yogurt

Chef Irby suggests using nonfat vanilla yogurt as a delicious substitution for mayonnaise. Use as a healthy substitution in chicken salad, tuna salad, and dipping sauces such as aioli. It is very flavorful and naturally creamy so you don't need to use a lot of it.

6. Cut the cheese

If you can't go without cheese, Chef Irby recommends lower fat versions such as reduced fat cream cheese, reduced fat Monterey jack, and reduced fat feta. However, if you prefer full fat versions, opt for freshly grated parmesan or parmiggiano reggiano, which are supercharged with flavor, and cut back on the amount you use. 

7. Substitute citrus for salt

Instead of salt, add citrus to both sweet and savory dishes. Chef Irby says, "The rind, or zest, of lemons, oranges, and limes is edible and adds a refreshing flavor to steamed or grilled vegetables, sauces, meat dishes, practically everything."

8. Pass on the bacon

Got to have crumbled bacon in your summer salads? It certainly adds flavor -- along with fat, salt and calories. Chef Irby suggests sidelining the bacon, but if you just have to have it, opt for leaner turkey bacon instead of pork bacon. 

9. Make your own pasta sauce

That seemingly harmless jar of marinara or dipping sauce may be a sugar-bomb in disguise. "Instead, use freshly diced tomatoes with a little freshly chopped basil leaves or cilantro leaves," suggests the Bikini Chef. "Add a hint of lemon zest, drizzle of balsamic vinegar and extra virgin olive oil (about a half-tablespoon each) and finish with a small pinch of sea salt and fresh ground black pepper."

10. Kick the bag of chips habit with homemade chips

Chef Irby relies on baked wonton wrappers to replace high fat, high calorie tortilla chips. Her recipe for wonton chips: Buy the squares and cut into triangles. Brush lightly with olive oil and bake in the oven at 225 degrees F. for 15 to 20 minutes, until crisp and golden. Top with salsa, serve with chicken salad or other dips as you would crostini and chips. She adds, "As a bonus, they are inexpensive and unused wonton wrappers keep in the freezer for up to three months."

Think simple and tasty

These simple food substitutions will help you seamlessly cut calories and reach your beach body goals without decreasing your everyday food satisfaction. Chef Irby concludes, “In fact, most people love the lower calorie, lower fat substitutions once they've tried them and have gotten past their fear of trying what they perceive will be tasteless food." Best yet, they are easy, affordable, flavorful, and will help you stay in bikini shape all year long.



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